Reviews, YA Paranormal

Short Book Review: Hallowed (Unearthly #2) by Cynthia Hand

hallowed-cynthia-hand

Goodreads Summary:

For months Clara Gardner trained to face the fire from her visions, but she wasn’t prepared for the choice she had to make that day. And in the aftermath, she discovered that nothing about being part angel is as straightforward as she thought.

Now, torn between her love for Tucker and her complicated feelings about the roles she and Christian seem destined to play in a world that is both dangerous and beautiful, Clara struggles with a shocking revelation: Someone she loves will die in a matter of months. With her future uncertain, the only thing Clara knows for sure is that the fire was just the beginning.

In this compelling sequel to Unearthly, Cynthia Hand captures the joy of first love, the anguish of loss, and the confusion of becoming who you are.

Review:

All aboard the Cynthia Hand train!

I absolutely loved Hallowed. The writing was better. The plot got juicer. The love triangle became even more intense. Ladies and Gentlemen, the sequel to Unearthly was not just better, it was phenomenal. I seriously hope that Boundless, the last book in the Unearthly trilogy, does not falls short when put next to this book.

I don’t know exactly how I feel about Angela yet. Something about her seems to be off. I am also warming up to Christian, a lot. I would be a fool to say I am not starting to root for Christian. The twists that were in this novel regarding Clara’s father, Jeffrey and other characters were done great and I never saw them coming. It kept me on my toes. You know a book is good when it turns your mind into mush. 🙂

Rating: 5/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hate it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I like it /A fun read.

4/5: I really like it.

5/5: I love it!

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Reviews, YA Paranormal

Short Book Review: Unearthly (Unearthly #1) by Cynthia Hand

7488244Goodreads Summary:

When Clara Gardner learns she’s part angel, her entire life changes. She now has a purpose, a specific task she was put on this earth to accomplish, except she doesn’t know what it is. Her visions of a raging forest fire and a mysterious boy lead her to a new high school in a new town but provide no clear instruction. As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she’d have to make—between the boy in her vision and the boy in her life, between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. . . . When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?

Review:

At first, the book was slow and the writing was weird. I was also in Fantasy slump so that probably didn’t help. The first time I attempted to read this book, I was only able to get through the first 70 pages and I quit. A month later, I decided to give it another chance and Bam! Best decision I’ve made. It takes about a hundred pages to get used to Cynthia Hand’s writing style but once that happens, it is smooth sailing from there.

There is so much I could say about this book but I don’t want to write a review full of spoils so I’m going to try to make this short and sweet. The characters in the story are infuriating at times but in a good way. The plot is a good and the world is well built. By the end of the book, I had been sucked into Clara’s world, the world of angels and angel-bloods, and I did not want to say goodbye. I love that the book wasn’t all love and gooey stuff, it had action and lots of it.

Rating: 4/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hate it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I like it /A fun read.

4/5: I really like it, but something is missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!

Reviews, ya contemporary, ya romance

Book Review: The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler

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Goodreads Summary:

Jude has learned a lot from her older sisters, but the most important thing is this: The Vargas brothers are notorious heartbreakers. She’s seen the tears and disasters that dating a Vargas boy can cause, and she swore an oath—with candles and a contract and everything—to never have anything to do with one.

Now Jude is the only sister still living at home, and she’s spending the summer helping her ailing father restore his vintage motorcycle—which means hiring a mechanic to help out. Is it Jude’s fault he happens to be cute? And surprisingly sweet? And a Vargas?

Jude tells herself it’s strictly bike business with Emilio. Her sisters will never find out, and Jude can spot those flirty little Vargas tricks a mile away—no way would she fall for them. But Jude’s defenses are crumbling, and if history is destined to repeat itself, she’s speeding toward some serious heartbreak…unless her sisters were wrong?

Jude may have taken an oath, but she’s beginning to think that when it comes to love, some promises might be worth breaking.

What I liked:

I can describe this book in one single word… perfection. There is a reason why I bought this book without even glancing at the synopsis and just on the basis that it is written by Sarah Ockler. Her writing is phenomenal. I can just read and lose myself into the pages she has written. That my friends is a God given talent.

I was not expecting the ending because the new trend in YA is to have a unhappy ending or as some people call it, a realistic ending. Excuse me, there can be a happy ending in real life too. Its how you view it, half empty or half full. I loved all of the characters, especially the Holy Trio, or Jude’s three older sisters. Being the youngest girl in my family, I can connect with Jude with how difficult it is being the youngest.

I think a reason this book hit home with me is because of the use of the spanish language and hispanic boys. I loved the way hispanic americans were portrayed. A little bit of our past culture mixed in with the american culture. Just how we are in real life.

One more thing, where can I find an Emilio Vargas all for myself? 🙂

What I disliked:

I wish we had more Emilio and Jude moments. I also wish the book was longer.

Overall:

The Book of Broken Hearts deals with a heavy subject without making you sob uncontrollably (Can we all say The Fault in Our Stars?). It has romance, family, good advice, and it mentions amazing food that I wish I could be eating right now. Empanadas anybody?

If you are a fan of Sarah Dessen, Morgan Matson, or just some good YA Contemporary, this is the book for you.

Rating 5/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hate it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I like it /A fun read.

4/5: I really like it, but something is missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!

NA Romance, Reviews

Short Book Review: Crossing the Line Novella(Pushing the Limits #1.5) by Katie McGarry

crossing the line (2)Goodreads Summary:

Lila McCormick, Echo’s best friend from Pushing the Limits, first met Lincoln Turner when tragedy struck both their lives. But she never expected their surprise encounter would lead to two years of exchanging letters—or that she’d fall for the boy she’s only seen once. Their relationship is a secret, but Lila feels closer to Lincoln than anyone else. Until she finds out that he lied to her about the one thing she depended on him for the most.

Hurting Lila is the last thing Lincoln wanted. For two years, her letters have been the only thing getting him through the day. Admitting his feelings would cross a line he’s never dared breach before. But Lincoln will do whatever it takes to fix his mistakes, earn Lila’s forgiveness—and finally win a chance to be with the girl he loves.

Review:

This is a nice fluffy read for those who loved Pushing the Limits. We get to see Lila, Echo’s best friend, in a new light as she is having to deal with her own problems. In Pushing the Limits, we saw her as the ditzy but protective best friend. I even doubted she would stay by Echo’s side, but in this story we see how much she loves Echo and that she would do anything for her. Even though it was short, it is a novella after all, I really liked it. In the few pages we  had, we got to know not only lila but lincoln really well and were able to understand and empathize. I almost want to say I liked Crossing the Line more than Pushing the Limits. If you liked Pushing the Limits, I’m pretty sure you’ll like this novella as well. (Both Echo and Noah make a cameo appearance.)

Rating: 4/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hate it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I like it /A fun read.

4/5: I really like it, but something is missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!

Reviews, ya contemporary

Book Review: Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally

Stealing Parker (Hundred Oaks #2) by Miranda Kenneally
Stealing Parker (Hundred Oaks #2) by Miranda Kenneally

(Author Edit 12/22/2014: I just wanted to add that I know I wrote a negative review about Stealing Parker and I vowed not to ever read any more of Keneally’s books, but I will say that I gave her a second chance and I absolutely love them! Please read her books! I will say that this one is still not my favorite for obvious reasons, but please don’t let my review sway you from reading any of her other books!)

Goodreads Summary:

Parker Shelton pretty much has the perfect life. She’s on her way to becoming valedictorian at Hundred Oaks High, she’s made the all-star softball team, and she has plenty of friends. Then her mother’s scandal rocks their small town and suddenly no one will talk to her.

Now Parker wants a new life.

So she quits softball. Drops twenty pounds. And she figures why kiss one guy when she can kiss three? Or four. Why limit herself to high school boys when the majorly cute new baseball coach seems especially flirty?

But how far is too far before she loses herself completely?

What I Like:

Miranda Kenneally did it again. I did not see that end coming at all. I guessed something would happen but not how it ended up happening. Yes, I am being very vague because I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone. I love that Kenneally writes stories that can seem cliche and adds her own twists that make it new and refreshing. The theme of sports within her books is something I like a lot. I think that hasn’t been done in YA, or at least not recently. I adored that Will and Parker were characters that were relatable. They both have crappy family issues going on. Both are not experts at dealing with difficult life circumstances but together along with some good friends, they figure it out. Somewhat, but that’s how life is. The ending isn’t perfect but it is believable. I love the open-endedness at the end of the book.

What I Dislike:

Here comes the bad stuff. I am sad to report that I will stop reading books written by Miranda Kenneally. Why? Because I don’t like an author trashing my believes. I dislike that she is making Christians look really bad. Yes, there are hypocrites within the church. Yes, there are some people in the church that are judgmental. What irritated me was the fact that the character, Parker, made the assumption that all Christians were the same. You may say, “but Veronica, Parker goes to another church and they don’t treat her like crap?” Well, Parker’s reasoning in the book is that they don’t judge her because they don’t know what happened. If they knew, she would become a social pariah again. It seems to be that the Christian characters being portrayed in the book are what I would call “Cultural Christians,” and not the real deal. The Christian characters in the book also disregard the bible and it is all about your personal relationship with God. Actually, it is supposed to be about both.

Another thing I disliked was Parker’s dad and his inability to stand up for himself. He seemed to read the bible so much in the book. I guess he forgot to read the book of Joshua where God calls us to be brave and not to worry because he will always be with us. It seemed to be that Parker’s dad was not being brave at all but was hiding behind the church as an excuse not do to anything in regards to all of the family issues. Okay, my rant is over.

Overall:

Overall, the story line was good, but I hated the incorrect portrayal of Christians. My reviews are a combination of the writing and my personal opinion on them. That’s how I calculate the rating.

Rating: 3/5

(The only reason it got a 3 was because the story line was great. If I only took into account what I disliked, It would be a 2.)

Rating System:

1/5: I hated it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I liked it (A fun read).

4/5: I really like it, but something was missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!

 

Reviews, ya contemporary

Short Book Review: Catching Jordan (Hundred Oaks #1) by Miranda Keneally

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Goodreads Summary:

“Whoever said football and girls don’t mix hasn’t read Catching Jordan. I couldn’t put it down ” — Simone Elkeles, New York Times bestselling author of the Perfect Chemistry series

ONE OF THE BOYS

What girl doesn’t want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn’t just surrounded by hot guys, though-she leads them as the captain and quarterback of her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys and that’s just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university.

But everything she’s ever worked for is threatened when Ty Green moves to her school. Not only is he an amazing QB, but he’s also amazingly hot. And for the first time, Jordan’s feeling vulnerable. Can she keep her head in the game while her heart’s on the line?

Review:

I was a bit skeptical about this book because I thought to myself I can not in any way relate to Jordan, I’m not a football player but after reading the first chapter at Barnes & Nobles, I went against my previous stance and bought the book. This book was perfect. Some people say it was cliche but I have a different opinion. To me it was the opposite of cliche. The love triangle was very different in the sense of I didn’t expect it to turn out like it did. I loved this book and the fact that Jordan stood up for herself and when she saw that something was wrong for her, she changed her behavior and did what was best for her. In YA we see a lot of female characters be at the mercy of the guy and I loved that Jordan was not that girl.

Rating: 5/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hated it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I liked it (A fun read).

4/5: I really like it, but something was missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!

Reviews, YA Mystery

Short Book Review: Perfect Cover (The Squad #1)

pcdropGoodreads Summary: 

Bayport High operates like any other high school–jocks at the top, outsiders at the bottom, and everyone else in between. Enter Toby Klein, a sophomore computer hacker who doesn’t play well with others. She has zero school spirit, a black belt in karate, and what her guidance counselor calls an attitude problem. She’s the last person you’d expect to be invited to join the varsity cheerleading squad.
But things are different at Bayport.
Bayport’s varsity cheer squad is made up of the hottest of the hot. But this A-list is dangerous in more ways than one. The Squad is actually a cover for the most highly trained group of underage government operatives the United States has ever assembled. Athletically, they’re unmatchable, though they make it all look easy on the field. Mentally, they’re exceptional–but with one flash of their gorgeous smiles, you’ll completely forget that. Socially, they’re gifted, so they can command and manipulate any situation. And above all, they have the perfect cover, because, beyond herkies and highlights, no one expects anything from a cheerleader.
Toby Klein might not seem like the most likely recruit, but she’s never been one to turn down a challenge. If she can handle the makeover, Bayport Hight may just have found its newest cheerleader.

Pretty, popular, armed, and extremely dangerous–meet THE SQUAD.

Review:

The first time I tried to read this book I was like, “NO… NO… Why did I buy this book again?!” I put it down for about 2-3 weeks and decided to give it a second chance a few days ago. Boy was I happy I did because it just became one of my favorite books of 2013. It is fun to read, it is witty, it has great, strong female characters, and it is action packed. It made me look at a cheerleader in a whole new way.  Even though I had a lot of work to do, I still managed to finish this book in one day. Talk about accomplishment right there.

I recommend this book to anyone that is stressed out. Get past the first two chapters and you’re going to thank me I told you to read it. Go on now.. GO BUY IT!

If you want to know more about the book and discuss it with me, leave a comment below! I’m all for talking about it!

Rating: 5/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hated it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I liked it (A fun read).

4/5: I really like it, but something was missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!