Review: Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Saint Anything

Saint Anything
Author: Sarah Dessen
Publisher: Penguin
Publication: May 5, 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
My Rating:

five-stars

Peyton, Sydney’s charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton’s increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?

Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.

The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.

MY THOUGHTS…

Saint Anything

“That’s the thing, though. You always think you want to be noticed. Until you are.”

My first ever Sarah Dessen read and I loved it!

It’s kind of difficult to explain how I feel about this book by just using words. I don’t even think I can give justice to this book through this review, because until now I’m still in a state of an emotional high.

Saint Anything is INCREDIBLY AMAZING!

I’ve just marked it as a new favorite, because it’s hard not to.Sarah Dessen has written something so powerful and heartfelt and a dozen other expressive adjectives that can’t even begin to adequately describe how great this book is.

Saint Anything isn’t a total romance and a common story you often encounter in a Young Adult contemporary book. It’s deeper and a lot more emotional. It basically talks about family relationships, personal growth, tragedy/recovery, true friendship, and love.

What made me admire this book was the writing style. Sarah Dessen has this eloquent, beautiful way with words that flow with enough sensitivity and understanding. All throughout the book, I felt the calming, comforting feels which is a rare thing that happens to me when reading a book.

Everything in Saint Anything is captivating. It showcases real life— the ups and downs, struggles, and joy we feel. It also has a well-plotted ending– which I couldn’t imagine being any more perfect. I have to admit that after experiencing this emotional journey, I had sad and happy tears. This book will stay with me for a very long time!

Rating: 5 Stars

READ ALL MY REVIEWS HERE 🙂

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Review: P.S. I Still Love You

P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2)P.S. I Still Love You
(To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #2)
Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Published: May 26, 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
My Rating:

threestars

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.

MY THOUGHTS…

PS I STILL LOVE YOU

“So much of love is chance. There’s something scary and wonderful about that.”

— Spoilers ahead —

The second book of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is more entertaining, witty, and hilarious.

What disappointed me was Peter.

Wait a minute…

Is Peter Kavinsky the same Peter Kavinsky I’ve read in the first book? Why the heck did he turn out to be such an effin’ dick?

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Seriously. Why did Jenny Han build transform his character like that? I admire Lara Jean’s character development here. She grew up emotionally with so much calmness and control despite the hell that happened to her.

But Peter. Why, Jenny Han? Why made me hate Peter? You know I love him in the first book, right? Did you seriously just turn him into an immature A-hole? The way Peter treated Lara Jean? It didn’t sit well on me. It just didn’t. Not to mention the fact that he’s still attached to his ex-girlfriend, Genevieve. SMH.

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And the plot. Why was it such a big mess?

And that ending. THAT’S IT??! Like, THE END? And just like that? Whoa! I don’t even know if that’s a good ending at all.

But the good thing, nevertheless, is that I enjoyed most parts of it. Like I said, it was highly entertaining and even funnier. Give it all to KITTY!!

Another good thing was JOHN AMBROSE MCCLAREN. This guy is a total bae and I just want to make that unequivocally clear. Ha! While Jenny Han made Peter such a dick, she built such a great character out of John. A complete opposite with the male lead. And up until now, I still could not get why the author did that. Transforming the lead man into a complete jerk and highlighting a secondary male character by giving all the good traits on him.

The ending was unsatisfactory. There was no real conclusion whatsoever. I don’t even agree with Lara Jean accepting Peter back like that. I think the kiss-and-make up thing was too easy. After all?

*sigh

Honestly, I feel like I’m being generous with my 3-star rating on this, but well.

It was still a fun read after all.

Rating: 3 Stars

READ ALL MY REVIEWS HERE 🙂

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Review: The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutroski

The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1)The Winner’s Curse
(The Winner’s Trilogy #1)
Author: Marie Rutroski
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens Books
Published: July 3, 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy, Dystopia, Historical Fiction
My Rating:

2star

Winning what you want may cost you everything you love.

As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions. One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction.

Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin. But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.

MY THOUGHTS…

THE WINNER'S CURSE

There are books that despite the high ratings and the enormous hype will never work out for you. This book is an example. I tried so hard to like it, but doing it only made me feel like I’m forcing myself in a relationship where I’m not happy and there’s no spark and magic (what an analogy *laughs).

I had a very hard time liking The Winner’s Curse. I found the world-building too tame, vague, and poorly executed. The characters are also underdeveloped. The whole book lacks magic. No questions about the author’s writing style. It was good, but it was not enough to make me spellbound.

The book was (I hate to say this) boring .

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I also think that the slavery and forbidden love theme are not my liking. Sorry, I really tried but I guess there are other books that are much better for me. This one isn’t one of those. The cover and the overall physicality of this book are spectacular though. And that, I think, is the good side of it. But I don’t think I will read the next sequel. There are way too many books on my tbr list right now, so….

Rating: 2 Stars

READ ALL MY REVIEWS HERE 🙂

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Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)Throne of Glass
(Throne of Glass #1)
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Published: August 2, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
My Rating:

five-stars

Meet Celaena Sardothien.
Beautiful. Deadly.
Destined for greatness.

In the dark, filthy salt mines of Endovier, an eighteen-year-old girl is serving a life sentence. She is a trained assassin, the best of her kind, but she made a fatal mistake: she got caught.

Young Captain Westfall offers her a deal: her freedom in return for one huge sacrifice. Celaena must represent the prince in a to-the-death tournament—fighting the most gifted thieves and assassins in the land. Live or die, Celaena will be free. Win or lose, she is about to discover her true destiny. But will her assassin’s heart be melted?

MY THOUGHTS…

THRONE OF GLASS

“My name is Celaena Sardothien. But it makes no difference if my name’s Celaena or Lillian or Bitch, because I’d still beat you, no matter what you call me.”

This is something I never truly expected. Guess this is the best thing about setting low expectations in a book– you get to be surprised! The moment I started Throne of Glass, I was already sure that it’s going to be just an okay book. I didn’t even wish to read its sequels for the reason that it’s quite a lengthy series. I was just curious because of the hype.

But holy crap! What was I’ve just read? Seriously, did I just read such a freaking amazing book? Wow, just wow!

Miss Sarah J. Maas, you’ve just gained another fan right here. Count me in!

I love everything in this book. From all its epicness glory to its impressive world and character building. Such a beautiful, high-fantasy read! If you want to know why I love it, here are the reasons why:

1.) It’s compelling and a total page-turner.

Ever had that feeling when you just want to devour word after word just to sink everything in to your mind because you just want to savor every little detail in the book and enjoy it? I’ve just felt that in every chapter.

2.) I love the characters.

Celaena Sardothien, the main character of this book, is my kind of character. Kick-ass, strong-willed, and not angsty and annoying. I love how she turned out to be such a strong girl despite her awful past.

Dorian Havilliard. Holy mother of all Gods! I just love him so much. And don’t be mad at me guys (I know there are lots of you, Team Chaol. Ha!) but he’s such an adorable character. I have always been a fan of princes, dukes, and royal characters so it was not hard for me to like him, and even adore him from the first up to the last chapters. I’m Team Dorian all the way!!!

Chaol Westfall. All right, so even if I’m Team Dorian, I have to be honest that I do admire this guy. I love his character and the way he’s too composed and protective towards Celaena. He’s a character every girl will drool over, okay! (which makes the love triangle really, really hard af)

3.) The author’s writing style is perfection.

In every book, the author’s writing style is the one that really matters. In Throne of Glass, the author just made a perfect job. Sarah J. Maas was able to pull me into the high-fantasy feels I’ve always wanted to delve into. I love how her words were easy to digest. It makes everything smooth, given the fact that there were many terminologies and names that readers need to get to know.

4.) The love triangle.

I have to admit that love triangles in books are a bit challenging for me, because they could either hit or miss. But this book– it’s just… I don’t know what to say. The love triangle is amazingly done. Have you experienced being put in a situation where you just don’t know who to choose between two guys because both are just amazing? I experienced that during the first chapters. But well, I have to say that I’m biased because like I said, Dorian won my heart. (But the series is not yet done, so I don’t know. Maybe I could change my mind. But for now though..) *sigh*

5.) Perfect plot.

The plot is really good! There were no dull moments. There were lots of twists and turns and surprising events that will absolutely blow your mind!

6.) Epic action scenes.

Best of all, I love the action side of this book. It’s just the beginning of the series and yet the energy is already there!

As a whole, the book is AMAZING. I was not prepared for this, but yes– I already decided to invest in this series and read its sequels. It’s now a new favorite!!! Hopefully the series will continue to become epic. Looking forward to that!

Rating: 5 Stars

READ ALL MY REVIEWS HERE 🙂

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Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #1)Daughter of Smoke and Bone
(Daughter of Smoke & Bone #1)
Author: Laini Taylor
Publisher: Hodder Paperback
Published: August 5, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
My Rating:

five-stars

Errand requiring immediate attention. Come.

The note was on vellum, pierced by the talons of the almost-crow that delivered it. Karou read the message. ‘He never says please’, she sighed, but she gathered up her things.
When Brimstone called, she always came.”

In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance. On the one hand, she’s a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family. Raised half in our world, half in ‘Elsewhere’, she has never understood Brimstone’s dark work – buying teeth from hunters and murderers – nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself, plagued by the sensation that she isn’t whole.

Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing, and Karou must choose between the safety of her human life and the dangers of a war-ravaged world that may hold the answers she has always sought.

MY THOUGHTS…

DOSAB

“Do monsters make war? Or does war make monsters?”

Took me some time to finally make a review because quite honestly, I wasn’t able to come up with some coherent thoughts after reading this book last night. It was so damn good it left me totally speechless– in a very good way!

Picking this up was sort of a gamble for me, because despite the positive reviews and the hype, I mostly tend to dislike a book. But this– This book just made me look like this:

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It’s totally EXCELLENT, EPIC, PERFECT! No words. Certainly one of the best fantasy books I’ve ever read so far!

Now let’s talk about why this book instantly became an easyfavorite.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone has the following:

Brilliant concept
Amazing writing style
Excellent imagination from the author
Hands down creativity
Intriguing characters
Fast pacing
Entertaining, page-turning plot

The concept of this book is indeed brilliant– And it’s quite unique. I have read a couple of books that talk about angels and most of them really impressed me. But this book– it does not only impress me. It surprises me all the way.

“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well.”

Never have I read something that talks about angels and devilschimaera. What was thaaaat again? Chimaera. I had to google the term myself because I needed a better perspective about those creatures lurking around this book. I was totally fascinated! Chimaeras and angels in a book? Whoa! That is something I’ve never encountered before. Thank you, Laini Taylor for introducing this to me! God bless you and your imagination!

What also made me fascinated with the book is of course, the amazing world-building. The settings are a jaw-dropper. If you think this book has only one setting, you’ve got it all wrong. It has otherworldly places that will put you in a full-on surprise and amazement.

When it comes to the author’s writing style… well, you can never go wrong in Laini Taylor. She really knows how to lure her audience and bring them to her majestic world. And not only that. She also incorporates humor in her lines. I really enjoy it every time I’m in Karou’s head. She has entertaining thoughts she had me laughing at times.

And speaking of Karou, this book also has intriguing characters. I like Karou best of all. She’s not at all annoying (This trait is becoming a constant issue, eh? Lol). I simply like her! She’s a combination of badass and sweet and funny.

I also love Akiva. Can I pause for a while and sighhhh? The feels! This guy is such a swoon-worthy guy. Heart heart! I also love the chimaeras Brimstone, Issa, Yasri, and Twiga. They are so adorable I just want to hug them all!

What’s even great about it is its fast pacing. There was never a dull moment here. From the very first page up to the last, I found myself really, really compelled. And oh, did I say that each chapter also has something to reveal and surprise?

The book is totally a page-turner. It kept my attention all throughout. In fact, it took me a while to finish it because I simply had to devour it word after word just so I can totally seize and enjoy the experience being in that world.

I could not thank Laini Taylor enough for bringing her awesome imagination to life through this book. It was simply a great adventure! I am certainly going to read the sequels soon!!!

(I also want to thank my dear, sweet friend AJ the Ravenous Reader for encouraging me to read this book. Love you, girl! x)

Rating: 5 (or more) Stars

READ MY ALL MY REVIEWS HERE 🙂

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Review: Graceling by Kristin Cashore

Graceling (Graceling Realm, #1)

Graceling
(Graceling Realm #1)
Author: Kristin Cashore
Publisher: Gollancz
Publication: January 22, 2009
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance
My Rating:

fourstars

In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are both feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of killing.

Feared by the court and shunned by those her own age, the darkness of her Grace casts a heavy shadow over Katsa’s life. Yet she remains defiant: when the King of Lienid’s father is kidnapped she investigates, and stumbles across a mystery. Who would want to kidnap the old man, and why? And who was the extraordinary Graced man whose fighting abilities rivalled her own?

The only thing Katsa is sure of is that she no longer wants to kill. The intrigue around this kidnapping offers her a way out – but little does she realise, when she takes it, that something insidious and dark lurks behind the mystery. Something spreading from the shadowy figure of a one-eyed king…

Kristin Cashore - Graceling

MY THOUGHTS…

“When a monster stopped behaving like a monster, did it stop being a monster? Did it become something else?”

High fantasy at its best!

This book is to be admired. And I definitely agree with everyone who says that the book is truly amazing. There are a lot of elements that make this book extra-ordinary.

Graceling is a story about the main character Lady Katsa of the Kingdom of Middlun. Graced with an unnatural gift that can easily kill anyone whenever she wants, she grew up under the influence of her uncle Randa, King of Middlun, who basically used her ability for his own interest. The book is set in a world where seven kingdoms exist– including Middlun and the story starts off when one of the leaders (the Grandfather) of the Kingdom Lienid was kidnapped. The incidence resulted to Katsa and her companions’ rescue involvement and investigation. She eventually met Prince Greening “Po” Grandemalion while rescuing the Grandfather and since then, they worked together to find the one responsible for the kidnapping. (Sorry for my lame attempt of summarizing the book. Lol)

Anyways, what I love about this book is the way it gives me the epic fantasy feels. You know when you’re reading a kind of book that just seems to take you to that certain world? This book does it!

The world building of this book is good, but I have to admit that I had a rough time at first because there were just too many names of persons and places. However, it was resolved as the chapters went by.

I especially love the characters here. Katsa and Po! Oh my goodness. I love this pair!

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A Prince and a King’s niece? Why not? OTP! I found myself shipping them together all throughout the book. I actually love how they work together as a team. How they fight and train together– it was awesome and entertaining! And did I mention that Prince Po is such a swoon-worthy character? Bae! And when it comes to Katsa, well, I really adore her. She’s not difficult to like. Strong-willed, badass, and without angst. Definitely my type of heroine!

This book, however, has some flaws and one of them is the ending. Turns out it’s a bit hurried or something. And I was actually expecting a different ending especially for Po and Katsa. I was not so satisfied by that.

Another thing is the action scenes. I kind of expected extreme, heart-pounding action scenes but they were just mild ones and not so challenging in my opinion.

But as a whole, I really love this book. I love the characters, the setting, and the whole story itself. I highly recommend this book to everyone, especially for those of you who love fantasy books such as The Grisha trilogy and Red Queen. 🙂

Rating: 4 Stars

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Review: Vampire’s Bane by Suzannah Daniels

Vampire's Bane (Vampire's Bane Book 1)Vampire’s Bane
(Vampire’s Bane #1)
Author: Suzannah Daniels
Publisher: Suzannah Daniels
Publication: April 14, 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Science Fiction
My Rating:

five-stars

VAMPIRE’S BANE is a mature young adult paranormal fantasy/romance/action & adventure/post-apocalyptic story.

Now available for pre-order on Amazon…will be released on Amazon on April 14, 2015.

A lethal sword.

A dangerous mission.

A seventeen-year-old girl finding her way in a world that is nothing like she remembered.

When Maylin Kavanagh’s parents surrendered her to The Program, they swore it was for her protection. After being confined in a small underground cell for nearly two years, she is finally released.

But the world has changed.

Most of the populace has been wiped out by a deadly disease, and the rules of society have regressed. But that’s not the worst of it. When her group is kidnapped by a band of rogue vampires, Maylin realizes the decline of the human population has brought other races to the forefront—races she never knew existed. And now they’re all battling for survival and power.

In his father’s absence, Thane Warwick must lead his people. He has two priorities: find his father and find humans who can supply blood to his tribe. Immediately intrigued by his latest captive, he becomes interested in Maylin for more than just her blood, but he soon discovers that he must make a choice between his father and her.

Despite their attraction, Maylin and Thane each have an agenda, and only one can be the victor.

VAMPIRE’S BANE is the first book in the VAMPIRE’S BANE series. While it does end at a natural turning point in the heroine’s journey, it is an ongoing story, and not all questions will be answered. You will need to read this series in order.

MY THOUGHTS…

And in that moment, I claimed her as mine.

(ARC generously provided by the author Suzannah Daniels in exchange for an honest review. *This does not influence my rating and review*)

I have always fancied vampire-themed books, especially when they’re blended with deep, dark romance. It’s a genre that I’ve always been a sucker for. This book, to be honest, met my expectations. I absolutely loved it!

Vampire’s Bane is the first book of the Vampire’s Bane series. It talks about the main character Maylin Kavanagh, a girl who was surrendered by her parents to be moved to “The Program” by which she was able to endure two years of being imprisoned and watched by the scientist Dr. Canton to prepare her, along with other teenagers, to fulfill a purpose in the future. After being freed, she and her peers started to have their journey to discover their purpose. But things had gotten rough when they met a group of vampires on their way and was held captive by the vampire leader, Thane Warwick. All throughout the book, Maylin discovered lots of things about the dark, twisted world they were living, which made her decide to escape and fulfill her mission to lead her group.

There are lots of reasons why I loved this book. One of them is *sigh* Thane Warwick. Let’s all admit it. Hot fictional guys always tickle every readers’ fancy. When the author introduced this sexy vampire, that was my undoing.

Thane is perfectly described and molded. He’s the kind of vampire that has a dark side which is very well added to the mystery and his overall appeal. Maylin Kavanagh, on the other hand, is a character you will either love or hate– or both, at the same time. Although she’s a strong character, sometimes you want to strangle her because she’s annoying at times. Not a perfect character, but she’s admirable when it comes to her dedication to her peers– and that’s more important.

Another reason why I loved this book is the author’s writing style. Very impressive! The plot was also well-done and there were surprising twists all throughout the book. And the romance? Perfect! I’ve already said this in my status but hell yeah, Thane and Maylin are the new OTP!

As a whole, this book is a very promising start to a great series. I totally enjoyed it. The ending left me wanting more and I can’t wait to read its next. 🙂

Rating: 5 Stars

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