From the Bookshelf #12


Hello, lovelies!

I apologize wholeheartedly for no posts last week, but my brother's getting married this week and I've had my hands full of all kinds of wedding things (not including cake *sad face*). But I've managed to finish a decent amount of books recently, so here's what I've had my nose in lately.

(If you're wondering if you'd like any of these, I tried to include a little bit of what it's about under each book, so feel free to take a peek.)

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Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Star Rating: 4
Genre: Realistic Fiction, Romance
Notes:
This book was an adventure. It's really sad at times, but their relationship is just too adorable to not love. Both of these characters have home lives that are less than perfect (Eleanor's being abusive at times), and school life isn't all it's cracked up to be either. And when they find each other, it isn't instant sparks, but they're not at each other's throats like most cliche books start out with. There are decently mature things in here, so it's up to you to judge if you think you can handle it.


The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Star Rating: 4
Genre: Historical fiction
Notes:
This is definitely a well-known piece of literature that takes place in the 1920s. I didn't see the entire movie before reading this, but I did accidentally see a spoiler part of the older version of the movie (the one not with Leonardo DiCaprio), so there is that. With so much hubbub built up around the book, I'd felt an instant disliking to it, but as I eased into it, I really did like it. The main character, Nick, is very relatable, just trying to find his way in a world where his neighbor is a party host every weekend and his cousin-in-law is having an affair. It's a little hard to get into, but overall a lovely, yet sad, book.


Zac and Mia by A.J. Betts
Star Rating: 4
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Notes:
I like to think of this as the Fault In Our Stars with way less cheesiness and making out. It's a cancer story, told by Zac and Mia, who both have it. But instead of trying to create soliloquies and woo each other, they keep things real. I love that it wasn't a depressing cancer book, but it wasn't unrealistic either. So if you liked TFIOS but you want something that hits you like a freight train, that this is for you. It's very much about strength and overcoming, but also just being there when it's impossible to overcome.


Hungry by H.A. Swain
Star Rating: 2
Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian
Notes:
I went into this thinking it was a similar story to the Giver, just with food. This takes place in the future, and instead of food, the people drink these weird nutrition things and take medication to keep hunger at bay. The plot was predictable at best, and the characters were so dull. The MC and her love interest would fight just because the author needed filler, and the entire thing wasn't interesting. It felt really shallow and weak, and their society wasn't intoxicating and didn't hook me. 

Just another cliche "Our government is secretly corrupt! Let's join an underground movement and start a rebellion! Oh wait, people are chasing us!" book. The ending was terrible, and it took almost 3/4 of the book for things to finally start moving along. (Also, nobody poops in their society because of the nutrition things, which kind of weirds me out. Sorry if that's TMI!)


One Past Midnight by Jessica Shirvington
Star Rating: 3
Genre: Fantasy
Notes:
This is a story of a girl who has two lives. Every night at midnight, she shifts into that life. Both take place in about the same area, but she's completely different people in each life, and eventually she has to figure out what to do when her "rules" of shifting start changing. Interesting idea, for sure. 

But the plot was almost sickening to read. There's one point where she starts cutting herself to see if she'll be cut in her alternate life, and that angered me, because some people seriously struggle with cutting and drug abuse (which she also has a little bit of in this book). Her love interest is . . . okay. But the author tried too hard to pull a fast one on the audience at the end, and there was nothing earlier to hint to this plot twist. It just wasn't realistic. But there were a few underlying good themes to it, which is why I didn't rate it a 2.


A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall
Star Rating: 4
Genre: Realistic Fiction, Romance
Notes:
Each short little chapter segment is different people (like a squirrel, teacher, Starbucks barista, waitress, etc.) narrating this love story. Two shy people who just make eye contact and smile in class, but are too bashful to admit anything. It was so cute to see other people's observations on Lea and Gabe's relationship that starts to become apparent. I just thought the whole thing was adorable and it made me smile.


The Young Elites by Marie Lu
Star Rating: 2
Genre: Fantasy
Notes:
I enjoyed Marie Lu's Legend trilogy, but this book horrified me. It's about teens who survived a plague, and ended up marked, scarred, and shunned by their communities. However, some survivors gained strange powers along with their marks. Those were called the Young Elites. The idea sounded cool. Teens with powers to kick butt sounded good to me. But this book was so dark. The MC has darkness laced in her powers, but instead of being fascinating like darkness can be, it filled me with such disgust for the MC. She seemed weak to me, and all of the darkness seemed pointless. It was like the author was trying to hype up something that just didn't have the power to be exciting. 

There are a few deaths in the book, but they had no meaning. I raised my eyebrows, but I didn't care about them. I was really excited to read it, but it just left this bitter taste in my mouth. I did not enjoy this book like I'd hoped. I just wish the plot was stronger and the characters had more depth than the cliche ones where one hates the MC and other is in love with her.

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That is all.

Cheers,
Seana

Comments

  1. Congratulations to your brother!

    I have not read any of these books. I've heard of some of them, though (that's gotta count for something).

    Hmm... this was a nice little boring comment. *sigh*

    ~The Unstoppable Child (I don't know why your blog won't let me comment as a WordPress user...)

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    Replies
    1. There's lots of things I've heard of, but I always forget about them until someone brings them up again.

      (I'll try to fix this if I can!)

      Delete
    2. I've been known to forget about a book until it's on sale for really cheap on Amazon. And then I have to tell myself not to buy it.

      (I don't mind. As long as you don't forget that I'm The Unstoppable Child.)

      ~TUC

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    3. Ah, le curse of sale priced books. (:

      (I tried to make it a thing but Blogger is just not having it. I promise, there's no way I could forget you're the Unstoppable Child.)

      Delete
    4. I suffer from Impulsive Book Buying. :P

      (MWAHAHAHA! Excellent!)

      ~TUC

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    5. *guiltily raises hand* Same here. I'm just an impulsive buyer in general. (:

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  2. Okay, Hungry was just weird. I love the cover--anyone want to join me in that?--but the actual story was creepy. I have nothing more to say about it.
    I remember liking The Young Elites. Or I remember really looking forward to reading it. But yeah, some parts were kind of messed up. I can only remember one character that I liked. I think he had silver hair. But I always like characters with silver hair. I know I didn't like his occupation, because it was really wrong, but I liked his character. Ya know?
    And I'll save the best for last. Gastby is one of my favorite books ever. I don't really like the actual story, but the writing and the characters are fantastic.
    I've been wanting to read Eleanor and Park, but then I picked it up and saw about 20 f-bombs in the first couple pages and I put it down. Yup...
    I haven't read any of the other books on this list, but I might want to read A Little Something Different eventually.
    If you have time and you're looking for something wonderful to read, check out The Grisha series by Leigh Bardugo. It's fantastic. 'Nuff said.

    ~D. Skye <3

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    Replies
    1. Cover was amazeballs. The story was disgustingly twisted. I mean, harvesting things from PEOPLE and feeding them to PEOPLE disguising the food as NOT PEOPLE? Gross.

      I liked the guy with the long hair whose name I can't remember. And the guy who can do artsy things whose name I also forget. Oops. But I feel you. Sometimes I turn a blind eye to character occupation things because they're so amazing.

      Gatsby was so good. I thought it was only gonna be decent, but Nick is definitely one of my favorite characters, and I feel so bad for poor Gatsby.

      Yeah, it has a wonderful story if you can get past the language and some undertones. I thought it was really honest, and sometimes language helps get the meaning across.

      A Little Something Different is one of those books that just makes you smile and want a nice cup of cocoa by the fire.

      Ooh, never heard of those! What are they about? (:

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    2. It's about Russian wizard people called, wait for it, Grisha. :) Basically, a girl discovers powers she didn't know she had and then goes on an amazing journey to save her country. I know it sounds horribly cliche, but it's really a fantastic trilogy.

      I forgot to say, congrats to your brother! I can't imagine either of my brothers getting married. But only one of them is in college yet so yeah...

      ~D. Skye <3

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    3. Haha, well if you say it's good, then I will be sure to check them out! (:

      Their wedding was very adorable. And yes, it would be quite weird to imagine your brother getting married.

      Delete
  3. Congrats to your brother! Family weddings are so much fun.

    The only one of those I've read is Gatsby, which I love love LOVE. When I started it I was expecting to love it, because of all the hype, but I actually didn't enjoy it that much. However when I read it again for school I understood it so much better and now it's one of my favourites. (Which is why I do not get people who claim that studying books ruins them. If you have a good teacher, it makes them so much better.)

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    Replies
    1. Yes they are! (: It was very cute.

      Gatsby was actually much deeper than I'd thought it would end up being. I thought it wouldn't live up to the hype, but I did quite enjoy it. I do think that sometimes school can kill the joy out of reading books, but some teachers do make it worthwhile.

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