MAY 2017 WRAP UP

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May started off as a really good reading month for me. I wanted to read all the time, and for the first couple of weeks I was reading a book every two days (this is when I read a majority of the books I read this month). However, while reading THuG and then ACoWaR, they took me slightly longer than the rest of the books. I wouldn’t call it a slump, it’s just that they’re both long and heavy books! Plus I became obsessed with ‘That ’70s Show’ and watched all eight seasons in less than two weeks… (I shouldn’t have admitted that). I read 11 books this month and I love most of them – I also reached the half way point for my 2017 goal of 100 books (I’m now at 54).

Anyway, here are the books I read this month!

 

My Sister's Keeper - Jodi Picoult

Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate, a life and a role that she has never questioned until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to ask herself who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister – and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and perhaps have fatal consequences for the sister she loves.

I’ve watched this movie a million times, and bawled my eyes out every single time. I finally decided to pick this emotionally captivating story up, and I really enjoyed it. I already knew that the ending was different and when I heard about how this ended, I thought it was stupid, but after reading it I understood it and it made more sense than the movie ending. I didn’t cry as much and I can’t decide which ending I prefer, but it was still a good read.
3.5 Stars

My Sister's Keeper

The Crying Lot of 49 - Thomas Pynchon 

Suffused with rich satire, chaotic brilliance, verbal turbulence and wild humor, The Crying of Lot 49 opens as Oedipa Maas discovers that she has been made executrix of a former lover’s estate. The performance of her duties sets her on a strange trail of detection, in which bizarre characters crowd in to help or confuse her. But gradually, death, drugs, madness and marriage combine to leave Oedipa in isolation on the threshold of revelation, awaiting the Crying of Lot 49.

I had to read this book for my uni class, Intro to English: Ideas of the Real. To be honest, I didn’t really enjoy it or understand the story. I thought it sounded fun in the beginning, but I got bored pretty easy. The cover I own is really pretty though!
2 Stars

The Crying of Lot 49

Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad

The silence of the jungle is broken only by the ominous sound of drumming. Life on the river is brutal and unknown threats lurk in the darkness. Marlow’s mission to captain a steamer upriver into the dense interior leads him into conflict with those who inhabit the forest. But his decision to hunt down the mysterious Mr. Kurtz—an ivory trader who is the subject of sinister rumors—leads him into more than just physical peril. The short story Youth, in which Marlow tells of his unlucky experience onboard a ship where the cargo caught fire, is also included.

Another book I read for uni; Lit and Society in Victorian Britain. I also didn’t really enjoy this one and I struggled to understand what happened. I’ve read so much about it and watched so many explanation videos, and I still don’t get it! It’s a bit annoying because I’m doing a group presentation and individual essay on it. Wish me luck!
2 Stars

Heart of Darkness

Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda - Becky Albertalli 

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

Eeeek! I loved this book so so much! I read THE UPSIDE OF UNREQUITED last month and freekin loved it, and I knew I was going to enjoy this one too. It was fun, the characters were amazingly written, and the story line was both inciteful, deep and light hearted. I cannot wait for the movie to come out.
5 Stars

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

But Then I Came Back - Estelle Laure

Estelle Laure is a bright new talent with a gorgeous voice – perfect for fans of John Green and Rainbow Rowell. Eden has always let her head lead the way. It’s why she excels at ballet, at school, and at life in general. But when she nearly drowns and then wakes from a month-long coma, everything is different. She’s troubled by dreams that seem more real than waking life, and her neat cookie-cutter existence is no longer satisfying. Unable to stifle her passionate heart anymore, she finds herself drawn to a boy with melting-chocolate eyes, and to a future different to what she ever imagined. That’s when Eden discovers that when it comes to love, first you fall, then you have to leap. Estelle Laure’s debut, This Raging Light, was a stunning debut with an unforgettable voice that has captured the hearts for readers.

Another incredible book that I loved. After such a streak of boring books, I had two in a row that I loved and finished in a day. The characters were amazing (especially Eden and Joe), the story line was both beautiful and unique, and it is one of the best books I’ve read this year. More thoughts on my review;
5 Stars
Review:

But Then I Came Back

The Names They Gave Us - Emery Lord

Lucy Hansson was ready for a perfect summer with her boyfriend, working at her childhood Bible camp on the lake. But when her mom’s cancer reappears, Lucy falters—in faith, in love, and in her ability to cope. When her boyfriend “pauses” their relationship and her summer job switches to a different camp—one for troubled kids—Lucy isn’t sure how much more she can handle. Attempting to accept a new normal, Lucy slowly regains footing among her vibrant, diverse coworkers, Sundays with her mom, and a crush on a fellow counselor. But when long-hidden family secrets emerge, can Lucy set aside her problems and discover what grace really means?

This was a great story about a teenage girl experiencing new and different things in her life – some good and some bad. Overall I really enjoyed this one; it focused on religion which is something that I rarely read about in YA, but it also focuses on serious topics as well. More thoughts in my review.
4 Stars
Review; June 9

The Names They Gave Us

Countless - Karen Gregory

When Hedda discovers she is pregnant, she doesn’t believe she could ever look after a baby. The numbers just don’t add up. She is young, and still in the grip of an eating disorder that controls every aspect of how she goes about her daily life. She’s even given her eating disorder a name – Nia. But as the days tick by, Hedda comes to a decision: she and Nia will call a truce, just until the baby is born. 17 weeks, 119 days, 357 meals. She can do it, if she takes it one day at a time …

I LOVED this book (I even finished it within a day). It talked about some really touching and heartbreaking topics that aren’t spoken about enough in YA, and I learnt a lot. It was hopeful and emotional, and one of the best books I’ve read this year so far.
5 Stars
Review: June 13

Countless

Rapture - Carol Ann Duffy

The effortless virtuosity, drama and humanity of Carol Ann Duffy’s verse have made her a most admired contemporary poet. Rapture, her seventh collection, is a book-length love poem, and a moving act of personal testimony. But what sets these poems apart from other love poems is Duffy’s refusal to simplify the contradictions of love, and read its transformations–infatuation, longing, passion, commitment, rancour, separation and grief–as either redemptive or destructive. Rapture> is a map of real love, in all its churning complexity; simultaneously direct and subtle, with poems that will find deep resonance in the experience of most readers, it is a collection that speaks for us all.

I read this book of poetry for uni; Intro to English: Ideas of the Real. I love modern poetry, especially love poems, so I thought I was going to enjoy this one. However, I only loved a few, and the rest felt a bit meh. When we start talking about it in class and focusing on individual poems, I might find that I enjoy others too.
3 Stars

Rapture

The Hate U Give - Angie Thomas

Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed.

Such a heartbreaking, touching and important read that everyone needs to pick up! I felt such a wide range of emotions while reading this, but overall I loved it (except it was really long). More thoughts in my review coming soon.
4.5 Stars
Review: June 16

The Hate U Give

A Court of Wings and Ruin - Sarah J. Maas

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.
As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

Overall I enjoyed the conclusion to this trilogy, even though I’m still slightly confused about pretty much the entire second half of the book. I seem to be the only one who prefers ACOTAR to the rest of the books in the series, but I love walking my own path! I’ll have a review up soon!
3.5 Stars
Review: June 20

A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3)

Always and Forever, Lara Jean - Jenny Han

Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.
But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.

This was such a beautiful and heartwarming end to my favourite contemporary series. There was drama, romance, family, weddings, fights, graduating and so much more going on in this books, and Jenny once again took me on an emotional roller coaster. I just finished reading this less than an hour ago and I already miss the characters and their story (especially Peter who is my number 1 book boyfriend!). If you haven’t read this series and love contemporary, than I HIGHLY recommend you do!
5 Stars

Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #3)

 

Comment below how many books you read in May and what your favourite was. I read so many amazing books this month and it’s hard to pick, but I would have to say my favourite is Lara Jean!!!

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APRIL 2017 WRAP UP

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Hello fellow readers!

Another month done and dusted, and we’re a third of the way through 2017?!? April was another decent reading month;
I read 10 books in total
7 books were for review (reviews coming soon)
2 were for uni
1 was for my own benefit, and it was a poetry book!

I also participated in Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon on the 30th and read two and a half books. A blog post will be up about that soon.

Comment below how your reading month was!

Milk and Honey - Rupi Kaur

milk and honey is a collection of poetry and prose about survival. It is about the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. It is split into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose, deals with a different pain, heals a different heartache. milk and honey takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look.

Everyone talks and posts about this poetry book and I’ve wanted to pick it up for so long. They finally had it in stock so I bought it and devoured it in a day because it made me feel so many emotions! I decided to tag all my favourite poems… which ended up being a majority of the book.
5 Stars.

Milk and Honey

Seven Days of You - Cecilia Vinesse

Sophia has seven days left in Tokyo before she moves back to the States. Seven days to say good-bye to the electric city, her wild best friend, and the boy she’s harbored a semi-secret crush on for years. Seven perfect days…until Jamie Foster-Collins moves back to Japan and ruins everything. Jamie and Sophia have a history of heartbreak, and the last thing Sophia wants is for him to steal her leaving thunder with his stupid arriving thunder. Yet as the week counts down, the relationships she thought were stable begin to explode around her. 

I liked this book, but I feel like it lacked a lot of things that would have made this a great story. I did a spoiler free review where I discussed everything in more detail, but it was a fun and quick contemporary read.
3 Stars.
Review:

Seven Days of You

Windfall - Jennifer E. Smith

Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes.

I loved this book! It had been such a long time since I had read a book that I really loved, but as soon as I picked this up I couldn’t put it down! I think I ended up finishing it in a day; it was fun and different and I think it was what I needed to read to get me back into that reading mood. More thoughts in my review!
5 Stars.
Review: May 4th

Windfall

The Upside of Unrequited - Becky Albertalli

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.
Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.
There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

Another incredible book that I couldn’t put down. I also finished this in a day; it was diverse, I loved the romance, there was family aspects, and it was so much fun. I haven’t read Simon but I now own it and plan on reading it soon. More thoughts in my review.
5 Stars.
Review: May 12

The Upside of Unrequited

King's Cage - Victoria Aveyard

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.
As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

Considering I didn’t really like the previous book in this series, I actually really liked this one. I was more interested in the story and I loved how Mare continued to develop throughout. More of my thoughts can be found in my review coming soon.
4 Stars
Review: 16th May

King's Cage (Red Queen, #3)

Mrs Dalloway - Virginia Woolf

Clarissa Dalloway, elegant and vivacious, is preparing for a party and remembering those she once loved. In another part of London, Septimus Warren Smith is shell-shock and on the brink of madness. Smith’s day interweaves with that of Clarissa and her friends, their lives converge as the party reaches its glittering climax.

I had to read this for my Intro to English: Ideas of the Real uni class. To be honest, I really couldn’t get into the story and I ended up skim reading it and just reading a summary. I was just bored and confused and I really didn’t like that it didn’t have chapters because I didn’t know when to put the book down.
2 Stars.

Mrs Dalloway

Middlemarch - George Eliot

Dorothea is bright, beautiful and rebellious and has married the wrong man. Lydgate is the ambitious new doctor in town and has married the wrong woman. Both of them long to make a difference in the world. But their stories do not proceed as expected…
Middlemarch contains all of life – the rich and the poor, literature and science, politics and romance – and is a stunningly compelling insight into the human struggle to find contentment

Another book I read for uni, this time for my ‘Lit and Society in Victorian Britain’ class. I didn’t hate this book; I enjoyed how we got the life stories of two different characters whose lives linked together, but not “too” together (as in they were from the same town but weren’t romantically connected as I initially assumed). It was just SO long and it dragged on (900 pages!) so I began to lose interest in the end.
3 Stars

Middlemarch

Close Your Eyes - Nicci Cloke

Southfield High School is oh so normal, with its good teachers, its bad, and its cliques. But despite the cliques, there’s a particular group of friends who have known each other forever and know that they can rely on each other for anything.
There’s the twins: Aisha, rebellious, kind, and just a tiny bit worried about what the hell she’s going to do once this year is over, and Vis, smart, quiet and observant. Then there’s Remy, the loudmouth, and Gemma, who’s more interested in college boys and getting into the crap club in town. And then there’s Elise: the pretty one.
But at the start of Year 11, when the group befriend the new boy, Elijah, things start to change. The group find themselves not as close as they used to be.
Until one Tuesday, when the students are trapped inside the school building. And one of them has a gun.

Overall, I really liked this book. I’ve never actually read a book based on a school shooting before so I found that really interesting to read about. I also enjoyed how it was told through different forms of communication; interviews, blogs, messages. It was a bit slow to begin with, but the mystery and suspense in the end made up for that.
4 Stars.
Review: May 19 (my birthday!)

Close Your Eyes

Indelible - Adelia Saunders

Magdalena has an unsettling gift. She sees writing on the body of everyone she meets – names, dates, details both banal and profound – and her only relief from the onslaught of information is to take off her glasses and let the world recede. Mercifully, her own skin is blank.
When she meets Neil, she is intrigued to see her name on his cheek. He’s in Paris for the summer, studying a medieval pilgrimage to the rocky coast of Spain, where the body of Saint Jacques was said to have washed ashore, covered in scallop shells. Desperate to make things right after her best friend dies – a loss she might have prevented – Magdalena embarks on her own pilgrimage, but not before Neil falls for her, captivated by her pale eyes, charming Eastern European accent, and aura of heartbreak.

Despite the blurb sounding really interesting when I first requested it for review, I read it and did not enjoy it at all. Luckily I read it during the 24 Hour Readathon and because it’s a short book I finished it quickly. If it wasn’t for that, I probably would have DNF’ed it because I wasn’t interested in the story or the characters. More details in my review.
2 Stars
Review: May 23

Indelible

The Blue Cat - Ursula Dubosarsky

A boy stood in the playground under the big fig tree. ‘He can’t speak English,’ the children whispered.
Sydney, 1942. The war is coming to Australia – not only with the threat of bombardment, but also the arrival of refugees from Europe. Dreamy Columba’s world is growing larger. She is drawn to Ellery, the little boy from far away, and, together with her highly practical best friend Hilda, the three children embark on an adventure through the harbour-side streets – a journey of discovery and terror, in pursuit of the mysterious blue cat …

I also read this during the 24 Hour Readathon and I managed to finish it in one sitting. It was a nice quick read that was able to educate me on the 40’s war time in Australia. There were some aspects to the story that I enjoyed, but it fell short for me due to the lack of character connection. More of my thoughts will be in my review.
3 Stars
Review: May 26

The Blue Cat

 

Comment below what your favourite book from April was, and what you plan on reading in May!

MARCH READING WRAP UP

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Another average month of reading! I read 10 books again; 4 for uni, 3 for leisure and 3 for review. My favourite book of the month was ‘Love Letters to the Dead’ and it is officially one of my favourite books (everyone check it out if you’re looking for mental health and grief recs)!

Also comment below how many books your read this month and what you’re favourite was!

This Song Will Save Your Life - Leila Sales

Making friends has never been Elise Dembowski’s strong suit. All throughout her life, she’s been the butt of every joke and the outsider in every conversation. When a final attempt at popularity fails, Elise nearly gives up. Then she stumbles upon a warehouse party where she meets Vicky, a girl in a band who accepts her; Char, a cute, yet mysterious disc jockey; Pippa, a carefree spirit from England; and most importantly, a love for DJing.

I really enjoyed this book and it had such a touching story – one that will definitely stay with me for a long time. It probably wasn’t as intriguing of plot driven as I thought it would be, but there was a great representation of mental illness present in the story and the main character and it was described in such a thoughtful way.
4 Stars

This Song Will Save Your Life

* Frogkisser - Garth Nix

Poor Princess Anya. Forced to live with her evil stepmother’s new husband, her evil stepstepfather. Plagued with an unfortunate ability to break curses with a magic-assisted kiss. And forced to go on the run when her stepstepfather decides to make the kingdom entirely his own.

I have a blog post all about this book and fairy tale retellings which I will link below. I was excited for this book because sounded like a fun and intruiging concept, however it didn’t end up meeting my expectations.
2.5 Stars
review:

Frogkisser!

Great Expectations - Charles Dickens

Dickens’s magnificent novel of guilt, desire, and redemption. The orphan Pip’s terrifying encounter with an escaped convict on the Kent marshes, and his mysterious summons to the house of Miss Havisham and her cold, beautiful ward Estella, form the prelude to his “great expectations.” How Pip comes into a fortune, what he does with it, and what he discovers through his secret benefactor are the ingredients of his struggle for moral redemption.

I started reading this book in high school, but stopped now far through because I was bored and didn’t understand it. I had to read it again for my English; Ideas of the Real class, and surprisingly I actually really enjoyed it. Obviously it is a bit slower and focuses on different themes than what I’m used to, but I was invested in the characters and their story. I’m excited to study this further in class!
4 stars.

Great Expectations

Love Letters to the Dead - Ava Dellaira

It begins as an assignment for English class: write a letter to a dead person – any dead person. Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain – he died young, and so did Laurel’s sister May – so maybe he’ll understand a bit of what Laurel is going through. Soon Laurel is writing letters to lots of dead people – Janis Joplin, Heath Ledger, River Phoenix, Amelia Earhart… it’s like she can’t stop. And she’d certainly never dream of handing them in to her teacher. She writes about what it’s like going to a new high school, meeting new friends, falling in love for the first time – and how her family has shattered since May died.

This is one of the most beautifully written books that I’ve read in a long time, and the story touched me in a way that very few books do. I cried, I laughed, and I fell in love with Laurel and her story. I think it’s a really important story that everyone should read, and I love how Laurel saves herself in the end.
5 stars.

Love Letters to the Dead

* We Come Apart - Sarah Crossan & Brian Conaghan

Nicu has emigrated from Romania and is struggling to find his place in his new home. Meanwhile, Jess’s home life is overshadowed by violence. When Nicu and Jess meet, what starts out as friendship grows into romance as the two bond over their painful pasts and hopeful futures. But will they be able to save each other, let alone themselves?
For fans of Una LaMarche’s Like No Other, this illuminating story told in dual points of view through vibrant verse will stay with readers long after they’ve turned the last page.

Another incredible book that is a really important read and gave me all the feels! It’s the first book I’ve ever read that’s told in free verse and I thought this made the story all the more emotional. More details in my spoiler free review soon to come!
4.5 stars.
Review; April 18th

We Come Apart

Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte

Orphaned into the household of her Aunt Reed at Gateshead and subject to the cruel regime at Lowood charity school, Jane Eyre nonetheless emerges unbroken in spirit and integrity. She takes up the post of governess at Thornfield, falls in love with Mr. Rochester, and discovers the impediment to their lawful marriage in a story that transcends melodrama to portray a woman’s passionate search for a wider and richer life than Victorian society traditionally allowed.

I read this last year and to be honest I found it boring and stopped paying attention to the story about half way through. I’m doing an essay on Jane Eyre for my Victorian Britain Lit class so I decided to reread it, and I LOVED IT!!!! It’s become one of my favourite classics and I appreciated Jane as a character and her incredible story.
5 Stars

Jane Eyre

Amy and Roger's Epic Detour - Morgan Matson

Amy Curry is not looking forward to her summer. Her mother decided to move across the country and now it’s Amy’s responsibility to get their car from California to Connecticut. The only problem is, since her father died in a car accident, she isn’t ready to get behind the wheel. Enter Roger. An old family friend, he also has to make the cross-country trip – and has plenty of baggage of his own. The road home may be unfamiliar – especially with their friendship venturing into uncharted territory – but together, Amy and Roger will figure out how to map their way.

I’ve read all of Morgan’s other books and I’ve loved all of them – the romances are always adorable and the stories are always fun. Amy and Roger is no exception! Although this isn’t my favourite of her works and the story fell slightly short for me, it was still a fun and light hearted read.
3.5-4 stars (I can’t decide)

Amy & Roger's Epic Detour

Because You'll Never Meet Me - Leah Thomas

Ollie and Moritz are best friends, but they can never meet. Ollie is allergic to electricity. Contact with it causes debilitating seizures. Moritz’s weak heart is kept pumping by an electronic pacemaker. If they ever did meet, Ollie would seize. But Moritz would die without his pacemaker. Both hermits from society, the boys develop a fierce bond through letters that become a lifeline during dark times—as Ollie loses his only friend, Liz, to the normalcy of high school and Moritz deals with a bully set on destroying him.

What I loved about this book is that it focused on the developing friendship between two teenage boys, and this is somethings that I rarely read about. Both characters are diverse and have been through a lot in their lives which definitely added to the plot and character development, however I found myself disinterested in most of the story. Find out more of my thoughts in my review coming soon.
3 Stars
Review: April 21st

Because You'll Never Meet Me

Our Mutual Friend - Charles Dickens

Following his father’s death John Harmon returns to London to claim his inheritance, but he finds he is eligible only if he marries Bella Wilfur. To observe her character he assumes another identity and secures work with his father’s foreman, Mr Boffin, who is also Bella’s guardian.

I read this for my Victorian Lit class. I actually struggled to read this because there were so many characters and so many different things going on and I actually couldn’t even understand half of the million story lines! Luckily for me I don’t have to do an assignment on this one!
2 Stars

Our Mutual Friend

The Importance of Being Earnest - Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde’s brilliant play makes fun of the English upper classes with light-hearted satire and dazzling humour. It is 1890’s England and two young gentlemen are being somewhat limited with the truth. To inject some excitement into their lives, Mr Worthing invents a brother, Earnest, as an excuse to leave his dull country life behind him to pursue the object of his desire, the ravishing Gwendolyn. While across town Algernon Montecrieff decides to take the name Earnest, when visiting Worthing’s young ward Cecily.

I enjoyed the play despite the quick and basic story line. However, I watched the 2002 movie and I actually liked it a lot more! The humour definitely came out a lot more, I found anyway, and I really liked the romance between the boys and their love interests.
3 Stars

The Importance of Being Earnest

FEBRUARY 2017 WRAP UP

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February was another great reading month and I don’t know how I did it! 10 books is slightly less than last month – but I’m still really happy with how much I read. Since it was my last month of holidays and I just started back at uni the other day, I might not be reading as much for leisure anymore, so I made sure that February was going to be a good one! I read some really good books, a couple of books that I didn’t enjoy, and I even reread a few books that I haven’t read for years.

Comment below how many book you read this month, and what you’re favourite was.

*: review book

 

Quiet – Susan Cain

For far too long, those who are naturally quiet, serious or sensitive have been overlooked. The loudest have taken over – even if they have nothing to say.
It’s time for everyone to listen. It’s time to harness the power of introverts.
It’s time for Quiet.

Being an introvert myself, I was really excited to read this book! I haven’t read many non-fiction books, and although I was enjoying the read and learning a lot about myself, I found myself just wanting to read a real story! There was a lot of information and Cain made good use of real life examples, I found myself slightly bored in some chapters.
3.5 stars (almost 4)

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

 

Dancing in My Nuddy Pants – Louise Rennison

Georgia thought she had put her “red-bottomosity” to rest when she finally chose Robbie the Sex God over Dave the Laugh. Anyway, Dave the Laugh is now dating her friend Ellen (which didn’t stop Georgia from snogging him at a party…)
But when Dave breaks up with Ellen and the Sex God is never around, Georgia doesn’t know what to do! As always, in Georgia’s life, nothing ever turns out as planned!

I continued on with my reread of this series, and I’m still really enjoying it! I finished this in one sitting and I wanted nothing but to keep reading!
4.5 Stars

Dancing in My Nuddy-Pants! (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, #4)

 

* The Chemist – Stephanie Meyer 

In this gripping page-turner, an ex-agent on the run from her former employers must take one more case to clear her name and save her life.
She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that. An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn’t even have a name. And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning.
Now, she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long. They’ve killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat. They want her dead, and soon.

I was really excited to read this book (thanks to Hachette for sending me a copy for review), but unfortunately it didn’t live up to my expectations. You can read my full thoughts in my review below.
2 Stars.
Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2017/02/19/the-chemist-stephanie-meyer/

The Chemist

 

Finding Audrey – Sophie Kinsella 

Audrey can’t leave the house. she can’t even take off her dark glasses inside the house.
Then her brother’s friend Linus stumbles into her life. With his friendly, orange-slice smile and his funny notes, he starts to entice Audrey out again – well, Starbucks is a start. And with Linus at her side, Audrey feels like she can do the things she’d thought were too scary. Suddenly, finding her way back to the real world seems achievable.

I am so glad that I read this – it was such a fun, adorable, touching and informative read. It was great to expand my knowledge on anxiety and to also feel that I can slightly relate to Audrey in many ways. It promotes a positive outlook on mental health, but there were so many other aspects to this book that also made it incredible.
4.5 Stars

Finding Audrey

 

* Dramarama – E. Lockhart

Two theater-mad, self-invented, fabulositon Ohio teenagers.
One boy, one girl.
One gay, one straight.
One black, one white.
And SUMMER DRAMA CAMP.
It’s a season of hormones, gold lamé, hissy fits, jazz hands, song and dance, true love, and unitards that will determine their future
and test their friendship.

I absolutely loved this book, just as I have loved ever other E. Lockhart book that I’ve read. It was so fun to dive into the world of drama and theatre, and to see how Sadye and her friends coped in this world that is different to anything she’s experienced before. I have more details on my thoughts in my spoiler free review.
4.5 stars.
Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2017/02/26/dramarama-e-lockhart/

Dramarama

 

* Our Own Private Universe – Robin Talley

Fifteen-year-old Aki Simon has a theory. And it’s mostly about sex.
No, it isn’t that kind of theory. Aki already knows she’s bisexual—even if, until now, it’s mostly been in the hypothetical sense. Aki has dated only guys so far, and her best friend, Lori, is the only person who knows she likes girls, too.
Actually, Aki’s theory is that she’s got only one shot at living an interesting life—and that means she’s got to stop sitting around and thinking so much. It’s time for her to actually do something. Or at least try.

This was a really fun and light hearted read that was still able to cover a wide range of topics that aren’t talked about enough. This is the first book about a bisexual teenager that I’ve ever picked up, and I think that there needs to be more! Hear the rest of my thoughts in my spoiler free review.
4 Stars
Review: will be up 17th March

Our Own Private Universe

 

* Wing Jones – Katherine Webber

Jandy Nelson meets Friday Night Lights: a sweeping story about love and family from an exceptional new voice in YA. With a grandmother from China and another from Ghana, fifteen-year-old Wing Jones is often caught between worlds. But when tragedy strikes, Wing discovers a talent for running she never knew she had. Wing’s speed could bring her family everything it needs. It could also stop Wing getting the one thing she wants.

I enjoyed this book so much that I finished it in less than a day because I literally couldn’t put it down! There was cultural diversity, romance, emotion and drama, and so much more! The author actually wrote the majority of this book during Nanowrimo in 2015 which I think is amazing, and it only inspires me even more to continue working on my Nanowrimo novel.
4.5 Stars.
Review: will be up 21st March

Wing Jones

 

* A Shadow Bright and Burning – Jessica Cluess

Henrietta Howel can burst into flames. When she is brought to London to train with Her Majesty’s sorcerers, she meets her fellow sorcerer trainees, young men eager to test her powers and her heart. One will challenge her. One will fight for her. One will betray her. As Henrietta discovers the secrets hiding behind the glamour of sorcerer life, she begins to doubt that she’s the true prophesied one. With battle looming, how much will she risk to save the city–and the one she loves?

I was really excited to pick this book up. I haven’t been in a fantasy mood so I’ve procrastinated reading it for a few months, but I decided to just read it this month. Unfortunately, I really couldn’t stay interested in what was happening. I was bored and ended up skim reading most of it. I have a review/discussion going up on my blog soon where I go into detail about reading genres that you’re not in the mood for and I talk about ASBaB in that post.
2 Stars.
Review: will be up March 24th

A Shadow Bright and Burning (Kingdom on Fire, #1)

 

* Vigilante – Kady Cross

It’s senior year, and Hadley and her best friend, Magda, should be starting the year together. Instead, Magda is dead and Hadley is alone. Raped at a party the year before and humiliated, Magda was driven to take her own life and Hadley is forced to see her friend’s attackers in the classroom every day. Devastated, enraged and needing an outlet for her grief, Hadley decides to get a little justice of her own.
Donning a pink ski mask and fueled by anger, Hadley goes after each of the guys one by one, planning to strip them of their dignity and social status the way they did to Magda. As the legend of the pink-masked Vigilante begins to take on a life of its own, Hadley’s revenge takes a turn for the dangerous. Could her need for vengeance lead her down a path she can’t turn back from?

This book was incredible! I’ve never read a book that’s left me feeling angry, annoyed and disgusted, yet so touched by the story and how the events panned out. I agree with a lot of people when they say tat it isn’t the best written book, but I think the story line is really important and more YA books need to discuss this issue.
4.5 Stars.
Review; will be up March 28th

Vigilante

 

Before I Fall – Lauren Oliver

They say ‘live every day as if it’s your last’—but you never actually think it’s going to be. At least I didn’t.
The thing is, you don’t get to know when it happens. You don’t remember to tell your family that you love them or—in my case—remember to say goodbye to them at all.
But what if, like me, you could live your last day over and over again? Could you make it perfect? If your whole life flashed before your eyes, would you have no regrets? Or are there some things you’d want to change…?

I read this book in high school about three years ago and I loved it – it was the perfect book that I needed to read during that time in my life. Since the movie is out (today!!!!) I wanted to reread it before going to see the adaptation. I forgot just how much I loved this book and how many lessons Sam learn and teaches the readers. I cannot wait to see this movie!
5 Stars.

Before I Fall

 

And that’s it for February! See you guys soon for my very first book haul!

JANUARY 2017 WRAP UP

I can’t believe that the first month of 2017 is already over! Near the end of 2016, I was in a bit of a slump. I was still reading a quite a few books a month, but I just wasn’t in the reading mood and I felt like I was forcing myself to read most of the time. Surprisingly, a few days into the new year, I suddenly wanted to read every single book on my TBR (good luck!) and I was back in the reading mood again.

My goal this year is to read 100 books (50 less than 2016), which means I need to read 8 books a month which is definitely doable. In January, I managed to read 13 books which I’m really happy with. So without further ado, here are the books I read this month.

 

This Beats Perfect – Rebecca Denton

Amelie Ayres has impeccable taste in music. Bowie. Bush. Bob. So when she finds herself backstage at The Keep’s only UK gig she expects to hate it; after all they are world’s most tragic band. In fact she feels a grudging respect – not (obviously) for their music, but for the work that goes in to making them megastars. And when lead singer, ‘Maxx’, is not dressed up as a cross between Elvis and a My Little Pony, he is actually rather normal, talented and has creative struggles not too dissimilar to her own.
But the next morning she wakes up rolls over and discovers a million new @’s on social media. Overnight a photo of her backstage has made her a subject of global speculation. Suddenly the world needs to know #Who’sThatGirl? – but for all the wrong reasons.
All Amelie wants is to play her music. She’s got the guitar, the songs, the soul and, in the safety of her bedroom, she’s got the voice. But when it comes to getting up on stage, she struggles with self-doubt.

If you love music, and reading books about music, then you will absolutely love this book… and I did. I’ve read a couple books that focus around this theme – girl falling in love with a guy from a band that she’s never been interested in before. I know it sounds cliche and kind of like a fan fiction, but it was so fun to read.
4 stars.
Review: will be out this Sunday (5th Feb)

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The One Memory of Flora Banks – Emily Barr

Seventeen-year-old Flora Banks has no short-term memory. Her mind resets itself several times a day, and has since the age of ten, when the tumor that was removed from Flora’s brain took with it her ability to make new memories. That is, until she kisses Drake, her best friend’s boyfriend, the night before he leaves town. Miraculously, this one memory breaks through Flora’s fractured mind, and sticks. Flora is convinced that Drake is responsible for restoring her memory and making her whole again. So when an encouraging email from Drake suggests she meet him on the other side of the world, Flora knows with certainty that this is the first step toward reclaiming her life.

This was the book that really got me back into reading again – and I managed to finish it within a day. It is different to anything that I’ve read before, and despite what she is going through, Flora is such a unique and fun character to read about. She goes on so many adventures in the book and feels so many different emotions, and I felt all of it with her. And can we talk about the ending… I had tears in my eyes!
5 Stars.
Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2017/01/15/the-one-memory-of-flora-banks-emily-barr/

The One Memory of Flora Banks

 

The Duff – Kody

Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “Duffy,” she throws her Coke in his face.
But things aren’t so great at home right now. Desperate for a distraction, Bianca ends up kissing Wesley. And likes it. Eager for escape, she throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with Wesley.
Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out that Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone.

I watched this movie when it first came out, and I’ve seen it countless amounts of times since because I love it so much. I heard that the book was completely different, but I thought I’d check it out anyway. It’s true – the book and movie are almost completely different, and if I didn’t know any better, I would think they’re not even meant to be the same story. But I didn’t really mind. I still really loved the book – I laughed, I fell in love with the characters, and I became invested in the story line.
4.5 stars.

The DUFF

 

To Capture What We Cannot Keep – Beatrice Colin

In February 1887, Caitriona Wallace and Émile Nouguier meet in a hot air balloon, floating high above Paris–a moment of pure possibility. But back on firm ground, their vastly different social strata become clear. Cait is a widow who because of her precarious financial situation is forced to chaperone two wealthy Scottish charges. Émile is expected to take on the bourgeois stability of his family’s business and choose a suitable wife. As the Eiffel Tower rises, a marvel of steel and air and light, the subject of extreme controversy and a symbol of the future, Cait and Émile must decide what their love is worth.

From the synopsis, I thought I was going to love this book. I love Paris and I was excited to read something set during this time in history, specifically a romance story. But the book fell short for me. I don’t have a lot to say about it that I haven’t already said in my review which you can check out below.
3 stars.
Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2017/01/22/to-capture-what-we-cannot-keep-beatrice-colin/

To Capture What We Cannot Keep

 

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk – Ben Fountain

Billy Lynn’s Long Half-Time Walk is a razor-sharp satire set in Texas during America’s war in Iraq. It explores the gaping national disconnect between the war at home and the war abroad.
Ben Fountain’s remarkable debut novel follows the surviving members of the heroic Bravo Squad through one exhausting stop in their media-intensive “Victory Tour” at Texas Stadium, football mecca of the Dallas Cowboys, their fans, promoters, and cheerleaders.

I saw the trailer to the movie first and it looked incredible, so I decided to pick the book up first. Although the book wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t nearly as good as I anticipated. The plot was a bit boring and I felt myself losing interest. However, it was touching to read about Billy’s day at home with his family and hearing his thoughts. Hopefully, I can watch the movie soon because I feel like I might enjoy it more.
4 stars.

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk: A Novel

 

Big Magic – Elizabeth Gilbert

Readers of all ages and walks of life have drawn inspiration and empowerment from Elizabeth Gilbert’s books for years. Now this beloved author digs deep into her own generative process to share her wisdom and unique perspective about creativity. With profound empathy and radiant generosity, she offers potent insights into the mysterious nature of inspiration. She asks us to embrace our curiosity and let go of needless suffering. She shows us how to tackle what we most love, and how to face down what we most fear. She discusses the attitudes, approaches, and habits we need in order to live our most creative lives. Balancing between soulful spirituality and cheerful pragmatism, Gilbert encourages us to uncover the “strange jewels” that are hidden within each of us. Whether we are looking to write a book, make art, find new ways to address challenges in our work,  embark on a dream long deferred, or simply infuse our everyday lives with more mindfulness and passion, Big Magic cracks open a world of wonder and joy.
My mum won this book in a contest a couple years ago, and even though the cover always intrigued me, neither of us have ever read it. A few Aussie Booktubers that I watch (The Bed Time Book Club) were reading this for the book of the month, so  decided to join them and finally give the book a shot. Although I felt a little inspired to be more creative after reading it, I felt a bit bored at times. Some of the short essays I skimmed over because I found no interest in them. However, things picked up closer to the end which left me wanting to write more and I started working on a short story.
3 stars.

 

Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear

 

Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging – Louise Rennison

Angus: My mixed-breed cat, half domestic tabby, half Scottish wildcat. The size of a small Labrador, only mad. Likes to stalk Mr. and Mrs. Next Door’s poodle. I used to drag him around on a lead, but, as I explained to Mrs. Next Door, he ate it.
Thongs: Stupid underwear worn by old Swotty Knickers, Lindsay. What’s the point of them, anyway? They just go up your bum, as far as I can tell.
Full-Frontal Snogging: Kissing with the trimmings, lip to lip, open mouth, tongues…everything (apart from dribble, which is never acceptable). As taught to me by a professional snogger.

I decided that I want to start rereading this series again over the next couple of months, and I’m so glad that I did. I forgot just how much I love this series – it’s fun, hilarious, and over dramatic. Something that I have realised from rereading this is that Georgia is a little bit annoying and a brat, but I think that only adds to the entertainment of the story.
5 stars.

Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, #1)

 

Before You Forget – Julia Lawrinson

Year Twelve is not off to a good start for Amelia. Art is her world, but her art teacher hates everything she does; her best friend has stopped talking to her; her mother and father may as well be living in separate houses; and her father is slowly forgetting everything. Even Amelia.

This was such a touching and emotional book. There were so many aspects to it, and I really felt like I was going through everything with Amelia. I talk more about it in my review, but it was an amazing read and I highly recommend everyone read it.
4.5 Stars.
Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2017/01/29/before-you-forget-julia-lawrinson/

Before You Forget

 

It’s OK, I’m Wearing Really Big Knickers – Louise Rennison

Brilliantly funny, teenage angst author Louise Rennison’s second book about the confessions of crazy but lovable Georgia Nicolson. Louise is an international bestselling author and her books can’t fail to make you laugh out loud.
What is the matter with my life? Why is it so deeply unfab?
• It’s a day and a half now since I snogged the Sex God…
• I think I have snog withdrawal. My lips keep puckering up…
• I tried snogging the back of my hand, but it’s no good…
• I wonder if the Sex God is having second thoughts about me because of my nose…
• I have a HUGE nose that means I have to live for ever in the Ugly Home

I continued rereading this series – I think I like this one better than the first one because I feel that more actually happens throughout the story. I finished it in one sitting.
5 stars.

It's OK, I'm Wearing Really Big Knickers (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, #2)

 

Zayn – Zayn Malik

ZAYN opens up with this collection of thoughts, inspiration, and never-before-seen personal photographs. After five years of massive success with One Direction, ZAYN launched his career as a solo artist with Mind of Mine, becoming one of the most successful artists in the world. Now, for the first time ever, ZAYN is going to tell and show all in this intimate and raw scrapbook of his life. Never-before-released photos give readers insight to ZAYN, no-holds-barred. Gorgeously designed with hundreds of full-color photographs and Zayn’s notes, drawings, song lyrics, and personal stories, the book captures Zayn’s most private moments and his candid feelings on fame, success, music, and life. The next chapter of ZAYN’S evolution into global superstar, told by the artist who is living it.

Being a fan of 1D and Zayn, I’ve wanted to read this for a while. Although it isn’t the best autobiography that I’ve read, I thought it was good to read Zayn’s perspective on what happened when he first left the band and decided to pursue a solo career. The media definitely twisted a lot of the things that happened during that time, so I was able to learn a lot about Zayn and hear his side of the story (the real story). I really loved the song notes that he included about each song on his album.
4 stars.

Zayn: The Official Autobiography

 

Girl In Pieces – Kathleen Gasglow

Charlotte Davis is in pieces. At seventeen she’s already lost more than most people lose in a lifetime. But she’s learned how to forget. The broken glass washes away the sorrow until there is nothing but calm. You don’t have to think about your father and the river. Your best friend, who is gone forever. Or your mother, who has nothing left to give you.
Every new scar hardens Charlie’s heart just a little more, yet it still hurts so much. It hurts enough to not care anymore, which is sometimes what has to happen before you can find your way back from the edge.

Although this is a chunky book with 400 pages, I managed to finish it within a day because I literally couldn’t put it down. It made me cry, gave me goose bumps, and left me hopeful. It is one of the most beautifully written books I’ve ever read and has touched me in a way that no other book ever has. I finished it and I couldn’t stop thinking about it, or Charlie, for days. Even though I loved Mikey and the part that he played in this book, I loved how Gasglow didn’t romanticise mental health and self harm – Charlie proved that she didn’t need a guy to fix her (even though I really love Mikey!).
5 stars (and more if I could!).

Girl in Pieces

 

Knocked Out By My Nunga-Nunga’s – Louise Rennison

Georgia Nicolson is now the girlfriend of the Sex God (aka Robbie), and things are wonderful. Except her loony parents are dragging her off to Och Aye land (aka Scotland), and the Sex God’s band’s chance at a record contract has left her something of a “pop widow.”
Then up rears temptation in the form of old flame Dave the Laugh. Is Georgia about to become a shameless vixen?

I continued with my rereading of this series.
5 stars.

Knocked Out by My Nunga-Nungas (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, #3)

 

The Edge of Everything – Jeff Giles

It’s been a shattering year for seventeen-year-old Zoe, who’s still reeling from her father’s shockingly sudden death in a caving accident and her neighbors’ mysterious disappearance from their own home. Then on a terrifying sub-zero, blizzardy night in Montana, she and her brother are brutally attacked in a cabin in the woods–only to be rescued by a mysterious bounty hunter they call X.
X is no ordinary bounty hunter. He is from a hell called the Lowlands, sent to claim the soul of Zoe’s evil attacker and others like him. Forbidden to reveal himself to anyone other than his victims, X casts aside the Lowlands’ rules for Zoe. As X and Zoe learn more about their different worlds, they begin to question the past, their fate, and their future. But escaping the Lowlands and the ties that bind X might mean the ultimate sacrifice for both of them.

I did not expect to enjoy this book as much as I did. Bloomsbury sent it to me for review at the beginning of December and I have been putting it off for so long because I wasn’t in the mood for fantasy. Despite it only being released at the end of January, if I knew how good it was going to be, I would have read it sooner. There was the perfect combination of romance and fantasy, and I can’t wait for the next book to be released.
4 Stars.
Review: will be live on Feb 12th

The Edge of Everything

 

So those were the thirteen books I read this month, and I would say it’s a good start to the year. Be sure to comment below what books you read this month!

DECEMBER 2016 READING WRAP UP

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I can’t believe December is over – another year done and dusted! This post is a bit late, but I’ve had so many other posts that I’ve wanted to upload so this one got pushed back a bit. I didn’t read as much as I wanted to last month since I was so busy with Christmas, family and just enjoying the sunshine. It didn’t bother me too much though because I still read seven books, and I not only reached my Goodreads reading goal of 150 books, but I reached the 153 mark!

Comment below what the last book you read in 2016 was!

 

Lyrebird – Cecelia Ahern

I was sent a copy of Lyrebird by Harper Collins in exchange for a review, which you can check out below. I was a little bit dissapointed with this book because I have read two of Ahern’s books before (Love, Rosie and Flawed) and I absolutely loved both of them, so I had high expectations. Unfortunately, I found the story kind of boring and felt like I had to finish the book because I needed to write a review. It is adult chic lit which is different to the usual YA that I read, but I usually like chic lit still (and I loved Love, Rosie). It wasn’t bad, it was just boring.

3 Stars.

Review:  https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/12/11/lyrebird-cecelia-ahern/

Lyrebird

Songs About A Girl – Chris Russel

This book put me back in the reading mood and I was so grateful. I’ve talked about it a few times (and it even made it in my Top 16 of 2016) but it was such a fun and creative read. It reminded me a little bit of a fan fiction since the main character falls for two members of a band, but I liked it and it was perfect for the mood that I was in. I don’t usually like love triangles, but I didn’t mind it in this instance and I think Russel did a good job at it. I’m Team Gabriel <3.

5 Stars.

Songs About a Girl

Looking For Alibrandi – Melina Marchetta

Another book that made it on my Top 16 of 2016, and this is probably my new favourite book of all time. It counted as my classic for the month of December – it’s an Australian modern classic that most kids have to read or watch the film in high school. My class never did, so when I watched the movie a few months ago, I fell in love with it straight away. I read the book in less than a day and I loved it even more. I relate to Josie so much, and her Italian family reminds me so much of my own. I already want to read it gain!

5 Stars.

Looking for Alibrandi

My Best Friend Is A Goddess – Tara Eglington

Thanks to Harper Collins for sending me a copy of the book to review, which you can check out below. This book follows the story of two teenage girls in high school, and although I feel like younger readers may appreciate the story a lot more, I found it a fun and lighthearted read which can be good sometimes. I liked how the story was told between the perspectives of the two girls, and we got post present and past stories and thoughts from both of them. I liked the realistic and unpredictable end, and even though romance was a big part of the book, it was more about the friendship between the two girls.

4.5 Stars

Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/12/18/my-best-friend-is-a-goddess-tara-eglington/

My Best Friend is a Goddess

My True Love Gave To Me – Stephanie Perkins

This is an anthology or series of short stories with the theme focusing around the time of Christmas and New Year. I read this about a week before Christmas which was good because it really got me in the festive spirit despite all the stories being set in winter and snow, when I was reading the book in 40 degree celcius heat (I’m not even joking)! There were some stories that I absolutely loved, and a few that I just skimmed through because they didn’t really interest me, but overall I liked the book and I just love Christmas in general.

4.5 Stars

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories

The Song From Somewhere Else – A.F. Harrold

Thanks to Bloomsbury for sending me a copy to review, which you can check out below. This book is directed to a younger audience and I think it’s classified as a children’s book – it’s short and contains illustrations, but this only made me love the story more. The pictures definitely added character to the book and helped me visualise the story. Although it’s a book for younger readers, it wasn’t childish, despite the main characters being young children. It was dark and scary, yet beautiful at the same time. I was left with goosebumps at the end.

4.5 Stars

Review: https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/the-song-from-somewhere-else-a-f-harrold/

The Song From Somewhere Else

A Quiet Kind Of Thunder – Sara Barnard

This was sent to me by Pan Macmillan to review as part of their official blog tour which you can check out below. This is such a touching and beautifully written book and I am so glad that I read it. Both the characters are so diverse – Rhys is deaf and Steffi is a selective mute and has suffers from anxiety. What I love is that these two completely different characters come together and they really do bring the best out of each other. I have a lot more to say, but you can check it out in my review.

5 Stars

Review:

A Quiet Kind of Thunder

And that’s my last reading wrap up of 2016! Comment below how many books you read in December and if you managed to reach your reading goals!

NOVEMBER 2016 WRAP UP

 

FullSizeRender (45).jpgNovember was a big month for me. We had Nanowrimo and I managed to write 50000 words this month (plus to 10000 words I wrote last month meant I was able to finish the first draft of my novel with 60000 words!) I also had my exams for uni and finished off the year before summer break! And somehow I still managed to read eight books this month which I did not expect. Most of the books I read were quick so I read them within a day or two.

So here’s what I read in November!

Girls Can Vlog – Emma Moss
This was sent to me by Pan Macmillan for review. It’s definitely directed to a youner audience, but it was a cute and quick read. Since I have been in a slight reading slump over the last couple of months, it was good to read something light heatrted and easy.
4 Stars.

Heartless – Marissa Meyer
I was chosen to be apart of the blog tour with Pan Macmillan Australia (https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/11/25/heartless-marissa-meyer/). I didn’t love it as much as The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer, but I still really enjoyed the uniqueness of the storyline and the fantasy aspect.
4.5 Stars.

Emma – Jane Austen
This was my classic for the month and even though it’s a really long book, I somehow managed to read it pretty quickly. I enjoyed the book and loved the romantic aspect and the character of Emma, however it isn’t my favourite classic that I’ve read.
4 Stars.

Gemina – Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
I finally got around to readng Gemina! I bought the book at the launch over a month ago and I finally got around to reading it. The book was so amazing and I loved it even more than Illuminae. Although the sci-fi aspects still confuse me most of the time, I still managed to enjoy it. The new characters that we are introduced to, their romance, and the heartbreak was all perfect.
5 Stars.

What I Thought Was True – Huntley Fitzpatrick
I was really in a contemporary mood so I decided to pick another Huntley Fitzpatrick book up. I loved My Life Next Door when I read it, so I had high expectations. Although I didn’t love this one as much, I still really enjoyed it. The story line was intriguing and the adorbale romance between the main characters was cute and everything that I needed.
5 Stars.

Girl Online Going Solo – Zoe Sugg
Thanks to Penguin for sending me a copy to review which you can check out here (https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/11/28/girl-online-going-solo-zoe-sugg/). I love Zoella and her YouTube videos and I really enjoy the Girl Online series despite it being directed toward a younger audience. It is perfect for its aged audience and if you are looking for a light and heart warming read.
5 Stars.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – J.K. Rowling
I saw the movie about a week before I read the scrip, and I loved both of them. There was so much humour in the characters, the plot was full on and driven with drama and magic, and the characters were so fun to read about. I cannot wait for more movies and screen plays to be released based around these characters.
5 Stars.

Blood for Blood – Ryan Graudin
I read the first Wolf by Wolf book at the beginning of the year, and I absolutely loved it. However, I didn’t enjoy this conclusion as much. Despite finding it less exciting and intruiging than the first book, I still enjoyed it and found that it was a good ending to such a unique duology.
4.5 Stars.

 

And that’s by November Wrap Up. Comment below how many books you read this month and what your favourite was. I would have to say mine was Gemina or What I Thought Was True.

OCTOBER 2016 WRAP UP

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I had a pretty average reading month – I read a few really good books, but a lot of books that I read I thought a bit “meh” about. I read twelve books overall; six YA, one graphic novel, four adult fiction, and one classic. Nine of the books I read were sent to me for review and you can check my reviews out for each of these books below. I also participated in Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon and I did a wrap up on my blog which you can also check out.

So without further ado, here’s what I read in the month of October…

‘USERNAME; REGENERATED’ – Joe Sugg
-This is the second graphic novel that Joe (MY FAVOURITE YOUTUBER!!!) released earlier this month. These are the only graphic novels that I’ve read so I have nothing to compare them to, but I really enjoyed both books. The story line and Evie herself developed so much in this book and I can’t wait to see where else Joe is going to go with this series.
-5 Stars

‘WITCH’S PYRE’ – Josephine Angelini
-This is the last book in the Worldwalker trilogy and I loved the ending to this adventurous series. You can check out the full review I did on this series on my old blog here; http://gabbytheblogger.blogspot.com.au/2016/10/worldwalker-spoiler-free-series-review.html
-4.5 Stars

‘VAMPIRE ACADEMY’ – Richelle Mead
-I really loved this book and can’t wait to read the rest of the series. I watched the movie a few months ago and can understand why people told me not to watch it first because it doesn’t do the book justice. Although it isn’t the best fantasy book I’ve read, I’ll definitely be reading the rest of the series over the next couple of months.
-5 Stars

‘HOLDING UP THE UNIVERSE’ – Jennifer Niven
-I have been looking forward to this book for a while, and I can say that I loved it. I’ve read mixed reviews about it, but I personally found it so unique and diverse and I’ve never read anything about it. You can check out the review I did on my old blog here; http://gabbytheblogger.blogspot.com.au/2016/10/holding-up-universe-jennifer-niven.html
-5 Stars

‘THE DEVIL YOU KNOW’ – Trish Doller
-I haven’t read a mystery/thriller book in a while, so I was really excited to pick this one up. Although it isn’t the best I’ve read, I really enjoyed it. There was a lot of suspense and thrill, and it was quite short which made it a nice quick read. You can check the review I did on this blog here; https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/10/18/first-blog-post/
-4.5 Stars

‘THREE DARK CROWNS’ – Kendare Blake
-When this book was first sent to me, I had really high hopes for it. The story concept was really interesting to me and I couldn’t wait to pick it up. But when I was reading it I found myself a bit bored at times and couldn’t enjoy the book as much as I wanted to.
-3.5 Stars

‘GOODWOOD’ – Holly Throsby
-I won this in a Dymock’s competition to review on their website, and I didn’t have high expectations since it was an Australian set adult culture book (I think that’s what you could call it). But I actually really enjoyed it and loved the tint of mystery in it. You can check my full review out here; https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/10/21/goodwood-holly-throsby/
-4.5 Stars

‘THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR’ – Nicola Yoon
-MY FAVOURITE BOOK OF THE MONTH! I absolutely loved this book and I want to talk about it forever. The book is told through multiple perspectives, and not all of the perspectives are human, and I loved that. And the ending left me in chills. You can check out my full review here;
– 5 Stars

‘SENSE AND SENSIBILITY’ – Jane Austin
-My classic for the month. I enjoyed the book and loved reading about the characters and their relationships with the boys. I loved the first half of the book, but it wasn’t the best Austin book I’ve read. I’m working my way through watching the movies now.
-4 Stars

BOOKS I READ DURING ‘DEWEY’S 24 HOUR READATHON’ – https://alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com/2016/10/28/deweys-24-hour-readathon/
‘THE FENCE’ – Meredith Jaffe
‘MISS YOU’ – Kate Eberlen
‘BETWEEN SISTERS’ – Kristin Hannah

 

So that was what I read this month. Comment down below what your favourite book was that you read this month, and if you read any of the same books as me! I’ll see you guys all next week with a new blog post 🙂