Two Book Reviews

I come armed with two reviews of the young adult variety. I’m eight books down for my ten book a month challenge. The ninth book has yet to be decided, but the tenth book which I have saved for the last week of January will be one of my classics for the year. I’ve chosen Persuasion as I simply fell in love with Austen’s work after struggling to finish a rather flat copy of Pride and Prejudice. After a simple change in edition (to the Penguin Classics which I now adore!) I finished P&P in a day after it had taken me a year to get through the first 200 pages. Lesson is that an edition changes everything.

I’ve also signed up for Library of Clean Reads Italy Challenge. I’m not sure which level I’m going for yet, but I have four books I’m eying for use in the challenge. I’ve set so many challenges for myself. Let’s hope I can make them.

Anyway on to the reviews. First up is the Private Prequel, The Book of Spells.

The Book of Spells (Private #0.5)The Book of Spells by Kate Brian

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Reading this book was kind of bittersweet. It’s the last of the Private books that I haven’t read yet. Having read the other books, I had heard about the Billings Literary Society. I was really excited to learn more about them. When I started reading the books I kind of got deja vu. From reading the Private novels, I know that Reed and Noelle are descendents of Eliza. But Eliza’s introduction to the school seemed just like Reed’s.

I initially thought Theresa was more like Noelle in the first few Private books, but it turns out she’s an ancestor of Paige and Dylan. I think the books said something about that. My memory is vague. Of course I knew that Catherine was a great-great-great aunt of Ariana. I didn’t get the killer vibes from Catherine.

Catherine ends up dying and the coven tries to bring her back to life. They do the spell and they do. I have to say it was anti-climatic. The creature just tried to choke Eliza. Is that all? Maybe it was my impression in reading the Private novels, but I expected some worse or more gruesome. Apparently the creature looked and sounded just like Catherine, but obviously it wasn’t her.

All in all though I enjoyed the book and it was a quick read.

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I was really expecting more out of this book. The end of the Private series was kind of anti-climatic and from the way things were explained in the main series, I was expecting the creature to be more gruesome or something. That’s the way they made it sound, but all it did was choke Eliza before they used a spell against it. Seriously? I kind of wished there were an epilogue though. I want to know if Eliza ended up with Harrison. I know she had children because of Noelle and Reed, but who did she marry? Questions, I have them Kate Brian.

Next up was Alicia’s part of the Clique Summer Collection. It was a quick read at 112 pages and I finished it in an hour. Beyond some minor complaints about word usage. I generally enjoyed it. It was fun and very chick lit for teens. Also as someone that likes to invent words, I kind giggled at some the Clique-isms. True story, I checked out the Clictionary at my local library and I regret that I didn’t pursue it closer because then I would know what some of the acronyms mean.

Alicia (Clique Summer Collection, #3)Alicia by Lisi Harrison

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

So I read the first two Clique novels and I enjoyed them and thus I bought the subsequent books. While shopping I saw four of the five summer collections going for $0.97 each. Now while I spend a lot of money on books, I loves me a good bargain! So of course I bought them.

I picked up Alicia’s book this evening. Keep in mind that I haven’t read the series since late 2011. It took me a minute to get back into the flow.I immediately knew I had missed some things, but that didn’t bother me too much. What did bother me were the words used. Some of the stuff I could let slip by and I have to admit I liked some of the terminology. But spelling hot hawt and not nawt? That was just too much for me. It’s minor, but I can get really picky about using proper language.

I did feel for Alicia for being thrown over by her cousins, but she bonded with Nina and I thought that was sweet. In the end she won the day when Nigel turned out to be the Spanish pop star. That did kind of surprise and I admit my inner thirteen year old cheered. Everything turned out okay.

So in conclusion I will be reading the other Summer Collections, maybe sooner than later and I’ll get back to reading the main novels.

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And Only To Deceive Review

Six books down and four to go for the month of January. I’ve made it a goal to read 10 books a month including a classic of my choice. And Only Deceive is my sixth book.

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When I first started reading the book, it took me awhile to get into it. Usually I intend to read a full 100 pages, but I only got into the thirties at first. But after I took some time off and I started to read again, I found myself becoming engrossed in the book.

I’ve always loved to learn and reading about Emily’s thoughts on the Illaid and Greek art. There were some lovely snippets from the epic poem and it made me want to pull out my copy and try again. But the copy I have is a different edition of the classics I usually use. I prefer the Penguin Classics editions because I find them more readable.

I thought the mystery was solved in a very nice way for the era. I didn’t get the vibe of being a detective or anything though. The villain turned out to be the Palmer brothers specifically Andrew. I have to admit I thought Colin would be the perpetrator, but he was actually investigating the case. I guess that shows that things are not always as they seem.

Now that I’ve read the first book, I will be order the next one as soon as I can. Although it may took a little while for me to read it because I try not to get overwhelmed by the characters by reading books back to back!

Thoughts on The Summer I Turned Pretty

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The Summer I Turned Pretty (Summer, #1)The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I kinda of sorta love this book. I did think the name Belly was kind of silly, but when I learned it was sort for Isabel suddenly I thought it was cute. Weird of me huh? I liked how some chapters were flashbacks to previous ages. I kind of felt sorry for Cam and Jeremiah getting the short end of the stick. But I was pretty happy with the end. I have the second book on my shelf. Now all I need to do is get the third and then everything will be right in my world!

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In other entertainment news, I’ve been buying music since three this morning. Music is such a big part of my life. I’ve just got into Tori Amos’ stuff and I just love it!

Several Reviews and an Explanation

On the day after my last post here, my internet was turned off. It’s a long story, but they claimed we didn’t pay them. So for almost two weeks I was without internet. I almost went insane. But what did I do with the time, you ask? I read of course. I think I finished eight books. I also wrote up my thoughts on the books.

I have a new laptop (yay!) that I love and I’m hoping to be posting more regularly here. There is something to be said about updating your blog from your bed, am I right?

There are some spoilers for Beautiful Days by Anna Godbersen.

Thoughts on Matched by Ally Condie

I had heard good things about Matched, but I was hesitant to pick it up because of my own bias. But I finally started reading it. I’ve recently become fascinated with dystopias which I have to give credit to my first one, The Giver. While The Giver and Matched aren’t particularly violent, the means that the government suppresses their respective people made me think about my government. I’ll be the first to admit that the government here isn’t perfect, but it does seem to me that things could go along that way. But without going on a political rant, Matched was very interesting and I’m looking forward to reading the second one.

Thoughts on Desperate Duchesses by Eloisa James

A few months ago, I bought a lot of romance novels. This isn’t out of the norm for me as I tend to buy a lot of books in short spans of time. But anyway, around the 21st of this month, I was looking at my bookshelf and I saw this book. The blurb on the book piqued my interest, so I started reading. Immediately I knew why people raved about Eloisa’s writing. It was so funny! I mean I laughed out loud so many times. Damon and Roberta had perfect chemistry and Teddy was so cute. Also I thought it was great that even though Teddy was illegitimate Damon still cherished him. I’m also really interested in Elijah and Jemma. I hope their story is expanded upon in future books. I am definitely looking forward to more of Eloisa’s books.

Thoughts on The Bride’s Bodyguard by Beth Cornelison

I decided to pick up this book because I was looking for some action and if you know me, you know I love romance. So it seemed like a perfect combo. Within the first few pages, the action started, which was a plus for me as I have a very short attention span. So after Paige’s wedding got fucked up (Excuse my language, I couldn’t think of a better word). She and Jake, the bodyguard, take off. While they’re running from the terrorists the two start to fall in love. I thought it was believable enough. But on point, the story was good and I thought the author did a good job with it. Also she’s from Louisiana and I think she might be from around my area and that simple fact made me way too excited. So go, Louisiana!

Thoughts on Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

I read The Hunger Games a little while ago. But it wasn’t until Christmas that I picked up Catching Fire. I don’t know if it was because my Christmas wasn’t so great, but I was without internet, so I decided to read. I wasn’t disappointed. The whole book was a ride and I finished it in a day. For Katniss and the other victors to have to go into the Games again was just terrible. I also noticed that there were little signs of rebellion. What with the mockingjay symbol and all. At the end of the book, I wasn’t too surprised at what happened, as it’s rare that I don’t look up spoilers for things. But still, I loved it. Now I’m contemplating should I go ahead and read the last book? It’s a tempting prospect.

Thoughts on the Dark Divine by Bree Despain

I bought this book way back on May 20, 2011. I had already wanted the book and when I saw it in the store, I immediately picked it up. It wasn’t until the last week of December that I actually started reading. The font of the book kind of threw me off, but I got used to around page 100. The story is really interesting. I already knew it would involve werewolves somehow, but I wasn’t sure how. I actually quite liked the heroine, Grace Divine and despite her name, she didn’t seem to be holier than thou. That sort of behavior really annoys me as I know a few people who are so like that. I didn’t see the end coming, but I like to be surprised. I also found Grace and Daniel’s relationship to be believable. That’s really important to me in books. But I’m looking forward to reading the next book as soon as I can!

Thoughts on Fallen by Lauren Kate

I started on this back in August or September or something. I don’t know what made me put it down but I did. During the last week of December, I picked it up again. I do really enjoy it. I wouldn’t quite say Luce is a stalker, but she does give off the vibes of it. I like Daniel, but he’s so hard to read sometimes. I think it’s rather strange that while I am completely fascinated by religion and all that. I’m currently in dispute with my own religion, whatever that means haha. But I really liked this book despite a few qualms I had with a few minor details. I will be reading the next book soon.

Thoughts on Beautiful Days by Anna Godbersen

After reading Bright Young Things, I was eager to read the sequel. I remember counting down the days until the book came out. In October after it had been released, I ordered it and waited for the book to arrive at my door. I had intended to read the book as soon as I could, but for some reason I never got around to it. It wasn’t until the last day of December during my exile from the net that I actually picked it up.

It took me about fifty pages to get back into the story, but after that hurdle. I remember why I had liked the first book. I still find Astrid to be dreadfully boring though. I don’t know what it is about her, but when I read a chapter about her, I find my eyes glazing over. Right now, Letty is my favorite girl.

I really wasn’t expecting Astrid to get kidnapped. I honestly thought it would be Cordelia. From the way Astrid was acting about being engaged to Charlie. I didn’t expect them to get married in the end. I REALLY wasn’t expecting Max’s mother to be black. But he did seem to be guarded and that was why. My girl Letty is finally living her dreams, but I can’t help feeling something is iffy about Valetine O’Dell. It just sounds suspicious. I’m hoping it works out for her though.

Girls on Film by Zoey Dean Review

I think I’m in a young adult mood. But when am I not in a young adult mood? I finished up Girls on Film and now I’m reading Matched by Ally Condie and really enjoying that. Here’s a short little review for Girls on Film.

Girls on Film (A-List, #2)Girls on Film by Zoey Dean

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I liked the second edition to the A List series. I found myself empathizing with Anna more. She didn’t seem as boring or perfect as she did in the first book. I thought Cammie was a total nutcase as usual. What she did to Susan was messed up. I will be reading the third book in the series as I’ve really begun to enjoy myself.

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Catching Up

The days have gotten away from me clearly. But I have been reading!

I started The Diamond Secret by Suzanne Weyn. I was half way through it and really enjoying it when I discovered the book started over again from page 35. Now I have to call Amazon and tell them of this mistake. Although I’m sure it was probably a mix up at the printer. I’m thinking that maybe I should just buy the ebook and try to finish it that way.

I’ve just recently finished my first Christmas romance. It’s called Royal Holiday Bride and the author is Brenda Harlen. I really enjoyed it, especially since it takes place on two fictional countries and lately I’ve been writing about my own fictional universe. It was a sweet little book.

Speaking of writing, I’ve put most of my stuff on hold until I can acquire a new laptop. My Toshiba, which was only two years old and had recently gotten a new battery, will not even charge. The horror! So in January, I’m hoping to be able to buy a new one or maybe if I’m lucky my brother will buy me one for Christmas. But that’s a big maybe.

Radiance by Alyson Noel Review

I feel oddly productive today. I did all the things on my to-do list. I bought a couple of movies and I think I’m still wired for that Starbucks energy shot. I knew I should have just got a coke. But I finished the first book of December and I quite enjoyed it.

Radiance (Riley Bloom, #1)Radiance by Alyson Noel

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve read two of the Evermore series by the author of this series. I have to say that Riley is a tad more interesting than her older sister Ever. I don’t know why, but Ever seems kind of dull, while Riley is pretty spunky. It’s been awhile since I’ve read literature intended for children, but I really enjoyed this book. I’m looking forward to learning more about the Here After. Oh and I thought the book sent a good message about living your own life.

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Movies and A Begone Era

In total this year, I’ve watched only eleven movies. To me that’s a good thing, but since I have no recollection of other years, I’m not sure if I’ve decreased or increased my viewing.

I’ve been a major Natalie Portman fan since the age of fourteen. This is also around the time I became obsessed with Star Wars. But I’m veering off topic. I knew Natalie was up for the Best Actress. I waited for news to hit the internet of the 2011 Best Actress win and I was euphoric when she was announced as the winner. But it wasn’t until November 2011 and after the purchase of both a portable DVD player and the purchase of the Black Swan, did I see the performance that won her the Oscar. As a person with a mental illness, it hit a nerve watching Nina. But I found the movie very enjoyable and it also sparked an interest in ballet.

I have a list of films that I would like to watch. Most of the films are independent, but there are a few blockbusters. I’m an equal opportunity viewer after all. I find myself wanting to watch silent films. I’ve always been fascinated by history and wouldn’t it be perfect to see it in action?

Any recs of films that I should watch? I’m making my way down the Best Picture nominees, but I’m open to all suggestions!

Secrets in a Small Town Book Review

So I guess this would be my first blog post. Well not really, since I’ve been blogging since I was fifteen, but this one would be my first public one. I had a lot of trouble deciding what type of blog this would be, but I’m thinking it’s going to be an entertainment blog. My definition of that would be books, music, movies, television, etc. It might also double as a DIY blog.

So here’s my first review:

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I started this book (Secrets in a Small Town by Kimberly van Meter) a few days ago. It started off strong and I thought that the author was doing a good job. My only qualm with it, is that it ended too quickly. I think there were too many sub-plots running and they weren’t wrapped up in a good way. I know that Harlequin has a certain amount of words for their specific lines, so I think Secrets in a Small Town would have done better in the HQN line by the same publishing company. But I did enjoy Piper and Owen, I just didn’t like the way the story was wrapped up.

All in all. I liked it, but I thought it would been better suited for another publishing line. I felt like I didn’t get a chance to really know the characters and their respective stories were wrapped up too quickly. So I think it merits three stars.