Saturday, August 29, 2015

Stacking the Shelves #7

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga at Tynga’s Reviews. Stacking the Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, physical or virtual. This includes books you buy from your local bookstore or online, ebooks, ARCs, and books you borrow from your friends or library.

If you want to find out more about Stacking the Shelves, please visit the official launch page.

This has been one crazy week! I am so glad the weekend is finally here, even though I am sure it will fly by way too fast. Next weekend I am going to Dragon Con and I couldn’t be more excited. Dragon Con is hosting quite a few authors each year and this year their guests include Sara Raasch, the author of Snow Like Ashes. I really hope I’ll get a chance to meet her. I’ll probably end up rambling more about this topic once I come back from the con, but until then, here is my book haul for this past week:

P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han – I read ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’ earlier this year and really enjoyed it so I am curious to see where Lara Jean’s story is going next.

The Demon in the Wood: A Darkling Prequel Story (The Grisha Trilogy) – I think out of all the books I got this week, I am most excited about this novella. I absolutely loved the Darkling in The Grisha Trilogy, and I am beyond excited to find out the Darkling’s back story. I will read this this weekend as it is only 67 pages. Cannot wait!

The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun David Hutchinson & Christine Larsen – To be perfectly honest, I don’t know much about this book except that lots of people in the bloggerverse love it; so, when I found it on sale earlier this week I decided to grab it. I’m not sure when I will get a chance to read it, but hopefully soon.

Remembrance by Michelle Madow – My friend Eve at FunctioningInsanity read and reviewed this book. She really enjoyed it so I decided to give it a try. Again, not sure exactly when I’ll get a chance to read it, but eventually I will.

Books received for review:
To Nowhere by C.E. Wilson – The author of this book contacted me and asked if I’d be interested in reading and reviewing her novel. The novel has a very unique dystopian concept and I am looking forward to reading it. She was kind enough to send me a copy of her book and I will read and post my review sometime in October.

Critical Hit-On (The Games of Love Book 1) by Deanna Dee – This was also sent to me by the author in exchange for a review and I’m looking forward to reading it as well. This is a new adult romance debut and it sounds absolutely adorable. My review of this book will also be posted sometime in October.

Starters by Lissa Price – This book has been around for a few years now and it seems to have gotten lots of love; so when I saw the audiobook available at my local library I thought I’d give it a go and see how I like it. I hope to get to listen to it in the next couple of weeks.

Tricks by Ellen Hopkins – This audiobook was also available at my local library. I’ve had this book on my tbr list for a while now and I am very happy to finally get to it. The book was originally released in 2009 and people still seem to be talking about it so it must be really good.

Reviews posted this week:
Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon – Last week, I was lucky enough to receive an ARC for this book from NetGalley. I read it in one day and absolutely loved it. Please check out my spoiler free review here. Also, make sure to grab a copy of this book, you won’t regret it. It was a fantastic read!

Have you read any of these books? Please let me know in the comments below. Also, if you reviewed any of these titles please make sure to leave me a link to your review. Hope you guys have a great weekend and thank you so much for stopping by!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

This innovative, heartfelt debut novel tells the story of a girl who’s literally allergic to the outside world. When a new family moves in next door, she begins a complicated romance that challenges everything she’s ever known. The narrative unfolds via vignettes, diary entries, texts, charts, lists, illustrations, and more.

My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.

But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly.

Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster.

Rating: 5 stars

This book was provided to me by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was so excited to receive my approval email as this has been one of my most anticipated debuts for 2015; and not only was I not disappointed with this read, but I was completely blown away by the amazingness of this novel. I will definitely purchase a physical copy of this book to add to my personal library.

Nicola Yoon’s debut Everything, Everything is a quick and heartwarming read that will leave readers looking forward to more novels. Everything, Everything is the perfect rainy day read as it has just the right amount of romance, humor, and heartache. The story takes us on a wonderful journey about love, loss, hardship, trials and tribulations, abuse, forgiveness, teenage angst, and just generally growing up and letting go. It is the kind of read that once it captures your heart it won’t let go, and what’s more you won’t want it to let go. The novel is narrated by Madeline (Maddy) Whittier who has a severe combined immunodeficiency, SCID; in short Maddy is allergic to the outside world and therefore is confined to her house. She hasn’t left her house in seventeen years and that won’t change in the future as there is no cure for her disease. The only two people she physically interacts with on a daily basis are her mother and her nurse Carla. She has online tutors, but basically her life is limited to books, school which she attends online, movies, and game nights. She is content with her life, until one day her entire world is turned upside down when a new family moves in next door. Maddy instantly knows that she will fall in love with Olly, the boy next door, and she also knows that it will be a disaster. But if you think this is a story about a sick teen with a doomed life story you couldn’t be more wrong. There are laugh out loud moments and tears to be shed, but the story has a very hopeful feel.

The book opens with a lovely quote from The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-ExupĂ©ry “Here is my secret. It's quite simple: One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes.” This is not only Maddy’s favorite novel, but it also fits the story perfectly.

Nicola Yoon managed to create easy to love characters that will stay with the reader long after the last page. I loved how Yoon portrayed several ethnicities in her characters; Maddy is a biracial protagonist, which I found very refreshing. This was not the emphasis of the story, but it was a great way of including a more diverse cast of characters.

The use of annotations, IMs, charts, and Maddy’s hand written notes that were included throughout the novel allowed the reader to further connect with Maddy, giving her a unique voice and making her more personable to the reader. I also really enjoyed Maddy’s one sentence spoiler reviews of classic novels that were included throughout the book and “Madeline’s Dictionary”, which I found extremely clever.

“Madeline’s Dictionary:   promise – 1. The lie you want to keep [2015, Whittier]”

The story touched on a several issues, such as depression and family abuse. I can’t say much about this as it would be a spoiler, but I loved the psychological bread crumbs that were given throughout the book, without actually giving everything away. I found the twists to be a bit predictable, but that might be because psychology is one of my favorite subjects and I took several classes on the subject.

All in all I loved this book; I found the story to be very well written, unique in its composition, and with amazing characters that I easily fell in love with. Yoon is an excellent storyteller and I am looking forward to reading more from her. Fantastic read!

Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: September 1, 2015
Sold by: Random House Children’s

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: Soundless by Richelle Mead

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.
This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait-to-read” selection is:

By Richelle Mead

Publisher:  Razorbill
Release date: November 10, 2015

From Goodreads:
From Richelle Mead, the #1 internationally bestselling author of Vampire Academy and Bloodlines, comes a breathtaking new fantasy steeped in Chinese folklore. 

For as long as Fei can remember, there has been no sound in her village, where rocky terrain and frequent avalanches prevent residents from self-sustaining. Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom. 

When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink and many go hungry. Fei’s home, the people she loves, and her entire existence is plunged into crisis, under threat of darkness and starvation.

But soon Fei is awoken in the night by a searing noise, and sound becomes her weapon.

Richelle Mead takes readers on a triumphant journey from the peak of Fei’s jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiugo, where a startling truth and an unlikely romance will change her life forever... 

My Thoughts:

Richelle Mead is one of my auto-buy authors and I can’t wait to get my hands on this book! This is her first fantasy standalone novel and it should be an extremely fast read as the page count listed is 272. When she announced this novel and shared details on the story line, I was intrigued. A village without sound? That’s such a fascinating concept. I cannot wait to see how that will be portrayed. I don’t know anything about Chinese folklore, but I have yet to meet a story engrained with folklore that I didn’t enjoy. I absolutely love learning new things and I think this book will be able to provide a glimpse into a new folklore world I know nothing about.

If you are interested in this book, there is currently a Giveaway on GoodReads you may enter until September 1, 2015. If you would like to enter this giveaway, make sure to click on the cover picture above for a link to this amazing giveaway.

Is this book on your TBR list? Please share your thoughts in the comments below. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday [4]

Top Ten Tuesday is an amazing weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

The topic I chose for this week is: “Top Ten Books/Series That Would Be on the Syllabus If I Taught 101 YA Literature”. 

I decided to do a very generic list because my tastes are very diverse when it comes to genre, but I mostly stay within YA and NA; I love fantasy, dystopian, adventure, contemporary, paranormal, sci-fi, and everything in between.  So here is my list, in no particular order:

Harry Potter by J.K.  Rowling

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

The Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy by Laini Taylor

The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

To be honest if I were to actually teach a YA Literature class, I would have multiple options for each genre and allow my students to pick what they wanted to read. I never enjoyed being forced to read certain books in school. I think that is one of the reasons people don’t read more; they never found that one genre that speaks to them. Recently I’ve mostly read fairytale retellings and fantasy; I go thorough phases. Do you have a favorite genre? Let me know in the comments below :)

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Stacking the Shelves #6

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga at Tynga’s Reviews. Stacking the Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, physical or virtual. This includes books you buy from your local bookstore or online, ebooks, ARCs, and books you borrow from your friends or library.

If you want to find out more about Stacking the Shelves, please visit the official launch page!

This has been yet another great book week for me. I managed to get quite a few amazing deals on physical books and ebooks, I got approved by NetGalley for a book I really wanted, and I finally got a copy of an audiobook I had been on hold for over 5 months. So here is my haul for this week:

Fairest by Marissa Meyer – This is the only book in The Lunar Chronicles I haven’t read yet. I am really hoping I’ll be able to read it before Winter is released as I have it on pre-order and I’ll probably want to read it as soon as I get it.

Willowgrove by Kathleen Peacock – I haven’t started reading this series yet, but I hope to get to it soon. I already had the first two books in hardcover so now that my series is complete I have no excuses. I’ve heard great things about this series so I am super excited to start reading it.


We Were Liars by E. Lockhart – I recently listened to the audiobook of this novel and really liked it. I borrow all audiobooks from my local library, so when I found it on sale I knew I had to purchase it and add it to my personal library. I also wrote a spoiler free review for this book, so if you want to get more details you can check out my review here.

Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock—As I mentioned above, I already owned the first 2 books in the series (Hemlock and Thornhill) in hardcover. However, I found this on sale for Kindle and decided to get it. When I travel I like to carry only my kindle because I am very protective of my physical books, so having a good kindle library is very important.

Ballad: A Gathering of Faerie by Maggie Stiefvater—This is another book I own a physical copy of, but since I found it really cheap for kindle I decided to add the digital copy to my library.

Across the Ages by RaShelle Workman—This was on the kindle daily deal earlier this week, and I knew nothing about the premise of this book. But when I looked at it it sounded super interesting and at $0.99 it was a steal so I decided to give it a try. Who knows, could end up a favorite. :)

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – Thank you NetGalley and Random House for approving my request. I have heard amazing things about this book and it has been on my list of most anticipated releases for 2015, so I was super excited to start reading it. I actually managed to read this in one day, yesterday, so I will post my review sometime this week. This title will be released on September 1, 2015. 

Yes Please by Amy Poehler—I’ve had a hold for this audiobook for over 5 months, and I finally got it! I am super excited for my commute to get laugh out loud funny next week.

 Have you read any of these titles? Let me know in the comments below. If you wrote a review make sure to leave a link so I can check it out. Have an amazing week!