Monday, October 21, 2013

Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

I loved Amy and Roger's Epic Detour which was Morgan Matson's debut novel. So when I heard about Second Chance Summer, I added right away on Now that I've read it, it is safe to say that Amy and Roger Epic Detour is still my favorite book by Morgan Matson.

The book has a great start. Taylor who is the main character goes to a lake house with her family as a way to say goodbye to her father. It is their last summer together before he dies. But then memories start to float back to surface. And readers are taken back years ago when that lake house was her life. Where she met her first boyfriend and lost her best friend.

The book is about finding broken parts and collecting them. It leaves you wondering if things can go back as they were. As much as this book was about correcting your past mistakes and enduring the obstacles that many goes through, it was very predictable.

I knew what was going to happen midway reading this book. There were no plot twists. This took away the fun in finding out the ending.

However,  Taylor's family stood out to me. They were strong in the midst of the new changes that they were going through. I hope everyone who reads this book, feels better. And I think this is the aim of the book is to inform its readers that they are not alone.  

Monday, October 14, 2013

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

The setting of this novel is very unique, giving it an edge that is hard to find in many novels. I think Shadow and Bone will be easy to remember its details when reading the second book because I dont recall ever reading a book with a similar theme. I think that’s what stood out for me.

Of course there were parts that I wanted to skip but they were necessary to understand the details of this world. At the same time, I wished there were more history given to us and more about the ruling structure in this world. That would have been great. But I think the world will be clearer in the second book (I hope so!). That is why I am so eager to read the second book.

I didn’t feel the romance between Alina and Mal. I saw them as siblings more than anything else. That’s why I had hard time getting into them. However what happened between them towards the end of the novel-the sacrifices-might had convinced me, a little, of their love. But, still, I need more.

The cover is iconic. I mean I am pretty sure you've noticed it in the bookstores. You probably stopped, picked it and read the synopsis. Its stands out which makes it the perfect cover for this book to sell and become more marketable.

Overall, it was a great book but it would have been perfect if extra details were incorporated throughout the novel. And if the love between Alina and Mal was given more time to develop because I felt like it was rushed. I needed more time to understand and feel the romance aspect of the novel.   

Monday, October 7, 2013

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

This book was a little boring in the beginning. But then towards the last 200 pages the pace was very fast, leaving me in awe after each chapter. Here is the thing:I didn’t know anything about this book until I started reading it. I am not one of those people who read the synopsis beforehand. I just heard that it was a great book and so I had to read it.

It circled around Germany before and during World War II.How this war was a lot to take…not on the world but on the Germans. What I really liked about this novel is that it focused on the Germans during this devastating period of time. And especially on the book thief. The book thief is the main character of this book and we witness her growth over the years.

She suffered the sight of watching her brother dying. And this had impacted her for a very long time. Then she developed a passion for reading. But there was one problem: BOOKS WERE FORBIDDEN. Apparently Hitler didn’t like books so everyone was forced to throw all their books to a pile. That pile was later to be burned to ashes. That however did not add a single flame onto The Book Thief's passion. The Book Thief had the willingness to sacrifice her life for a book.

This book really showed me how it was like back then. The clock kept ticking in 2013 but my whole being was in the late 30s and early 40s.

I don’t recommend this book to people who don’t like history and politics. I mean I like history but this book took forever to explain or discuss anything historical.

Fun fact: of course there were a lot of German words thrown here and there. I don’t know German but I recognized the word "Leader" and "My Struggle" in the German language. I remembered them from history class in high school. Did I mention that I love history? And so that made me feel proud.

The writing style was just amazing. I mean that last sentence was a great way to end this book. I even tweeted two quotes from the book. So many great meanings and lyrical words.

The first thought that came to me after finishing this book was "I gotta check out more of Markus Zusak's novels."

Monday, September 23, 2013

Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier

I need the third book of the series now. (Note this review was written in May)

Ever since I read Ruby Red in 2011, it left me with this love/pain. I kept thinking about Gwen. And how I just rooted for her and completely loved this main character. I wanted her to win, to be the best. I easily felt sorry for her. And I wanted nothing but happiness for her. The author had created a very smart and witty character and she makes her sound like a teenager. Taking references from the trendy pop culture and the way Gwen invoice her thoughts makes her real.

I dont know how the author did this. But she skilfully made this book sound and feel so real to me. It was not just ink on paper. It was real. I could feel myself.

The second book came with awesome-packed stuff. The events Gwen attended. All this time travelling made me it really possible to travel through time and space? How? And the author here gives you the time and space to think about it but at the same time, makes it seems like every day science.

Now onto my favorite part, Gideon. I love him. He is the best male character. Again, I cannot stop thinking about him since book 1. And in book 2, the author just gives me all I need. His so many sides and angles. He is simply a human being (in terms of making mistakes). And every time Gwen fights with him, I just go to Switzerland. And that last scene kills me every time I think about it.

I love this book. Beautiful. And I really wished all of Kerstin Gier's books got translated because I would like to read everything she had written so far.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi

As we all know, I loved Shatter Me. In fact it was one of my favorite reads in 2011. This made my expectations for Unravel Me go up the rooftop.

 The number one thing I loved the most in Unravel Me was how every character stood out, turning them all into main characters. I felt like they were all essential to the storyline and I don’t usually feel that way. Like, in novels where they are love triangle, I get to only think and care about the 3 involved. However in this book I cared about each one of them, liked them and memorized their names. I have the worst memory but I still could recall Castle, Kenji , the Twins, etc.

The one thing I didn’t like is that I didn’t feel anything towards James this time around. I am leaning more towards Warner, even though I shouldn’t be. James was just boring in this installment. Really. So I had no choice but to look forward to Warner's part every time I turned a page. From book 1, I have been leaning towards Warner but Juliette was disagreeing with me. And she is finally listening to me in this book. I had to yell on top of my lungs for her to hear me. I mean Warner is a bad guys, but lets not forget that no one was born with pure evilness in their bloods. Warner just needs a chance. And I really like how the author made the relationship among the 3 so complicated even more. I was just going " no oh nooo. That cant be happening. I didn’t see that. What why?"

You talk to yourself a lot, reading this book.    

I also felt like the writing style had changed too. Not sure if that is a bad or good thing. Just thought I should mention it.

Finally, I want to say that I'm super excited for book 3.  


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