Posts Categorized: 4 star books

Speechless: review & giveaway

Speechless: review & giveaway

Speechlessby Hannah Harrington I was not going to read this book. I promise you, I was not. I was so fully aware of my (standing) disappointment with Harrington’s debut Saving June, and was certain I had a firm grasp of her writing style that I had prematurely made up my mind. Well. Sometimes people act like snobs, okay. It’s not a crime. It just makes you highly unlikeable as a human being. Anyway. I requested this on NetGalley and as fate would have it, I got approved. It was there for my taking. And then all these reviews were popping up, giving Speechless four stars, five stars! Scoff, I say! But. But they’re not entirely, completely, like totally wrong, like they’re kind of right because it’s really not that bad omg I’m giving this four stars! I really, really liked Speechless. Harrington’s growth as a writer is monumental. One aspect… Read more »

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Every Day: review & giveaway (plus bonus recipe!)

Every Day: review & giveaway (plus bonus recipe!)

Every Day by David Levithan What makes us fall in love–and what makes us who we are? Those are the questions at the heart of this novel, which tells a thoughtful, touching story that will surprise readers with its sentient literary style and gentle feeling. Everyone longs for human connection, but 16-year-old A.’s search for it seems to be a losing proposition. Every day, for as long as he can remember, he wakes up in a different body: sometimes as a girl, sometimes with a different ethnicity, sometimes with a different sexual orientation. He’s long recognized the futility of trying to create lasting relationships, but everything changes when he meets Rhiannon, a girl who makes him want things he’s never thought possible. This story reminds me of one of my favorite TNG episodes with a similar concept, and A. also follows a sort of prime directive in his self-imposed policy… Read more »

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Amber House: review

Amber House: review

Amber Houseby Kelly Moore, Tucker Reed, Larkin Reed I love a good Gothic novel, so I could not have been more eager to finally be able to sit and crack open this story. Amber House delivers a gothic/horror/scary tale in all its intrinsic glory. It involves a young girl, called Sarah, who returns with her family to the old family estate, Amber House, to bury the matriarch of this strange, strange dynasty. They decide to stay for a couple of weeks and very soon Sarah discovers shadows, echoes, and mysteries in every corner of this ancient place. Mysteries of her ancestry, of the past lives that walked among the halls and rooms she now occupied; disturbing revelations about her cold, abrupt mother, ones that threaten to loosen the already delicate ties holding the two of them together; and frightening enigmas about the house itself, a house that seems to have… Read more »

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False Memory: review

False Memory: review

False Memoryby Dan Krokos Of the many young adult science fiction novels that have been released recently, False Memory stands out as an extremly fun, solidly entertaining debut. This action-packed, suspenseful story follows Miranda North, a teenage girl who wakes up without any memory of who she is. Before long, she discovers that her unusual ability to release a painful pulse of energy is the reason why she’s being relentlessly pursued…and the reason why her life, as well as the lives of many others, is now in danger. From brain wave manipulation to rogue agents to a tonally genuine romance, this book includes a lot of different elements, and manages to present them all in a surprisingly engaging way. The author understands how to balance tension and levity, as well as how to up the ante both physically and emotionally as the story builds to its climax. It’s rare to find… Read more »

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Girl of Nightmares: review and giveaway!

Girl of Nightmares: review and giveaway!

Girl of Nightmares (Anna #2)by Kendare Blake “It’s probably going to be blood,” Thomas says in a regretful tone that doesn’t match the devious excitement in his eyes. “It’s almost always about blood.” If your dead, ghostly girlfriend sacrificed herself for you, you’d hope she’d at least finally be at peace, right? But it turns out poor Anna is still a lost, unmoored soul, and Cas Lowood is still haunted by her face everywhere he goes. In this sequel to Anna Dressed in Blood, which was one of my favorite books from 2011, Cas must find out what’s happened to the girl he loves, all the while uncovering more long-held secrets from his past. Sequels are always a tricky business, so I breathed a sigh of relief when I found that it was easy to immerse myself in this world again. I love the dark beauty of Kendare Blake’s writing… Read more »

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Shadow and Bone: review

Shadow and Bone: review

Shadow and Boneby Leigh Bardugo The correct term for my current condition is Tskdn;ieajnrja. It is a state in which the mind of a reader of young adult fiction is awesomely blown. I’ve lost all sense of decorum. You see, all I want to do is fangirl. That’s it. All the time. I come near the book and it’s a reaction — I just squeal and squeeze my hands to my heart and bat my lashes and swing side to side, breathe in air, breathe out wishful thoughts.  It’s a symptom, a side effect, a sickness, a who cares. I don’t mind that Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone has turned my brain to mush, or that it has limited my mental capacity to that of a tween girl. I’ve written notes and I have things to say, I just can’t piece them together to make enough sense that they would… Read more »

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Above: review

Above: review

Above by Leah Bobet Above is a deeply human tale. Bobet takes human problems, human hates, human sadnesses and disappointments, and human hopes, and wraps them up in a jarringly sparse, backwards prose about an underground community of Freaks, who wish for nothing more than to be left alone.   Above is a challenge, evidenced by the numerous reviewers who’ve abandoned ship before they ever set sail. Which is a shame. Because while this may be categorized under paranormal and science fiction, it’s really no more than a disguise. Bobet’s story hits much closer to home than might be expected. The prose. It is the gift and curse. The dialect is disordered and requires deciphering. Basic rules of grammar does not apply here. Our protagonist, Matthew, is a young man born underground, in Safe. A Freak-built safe-house for those who have gills, lion’s feet, and crab claws; for those who… Read more »

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