Unfinished Reads | Spring 2015

UR
Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk

I had been looking forward to reading Fight Club since forever because I’ve been dying to watch the movie. I adore Edward Norton (Brad Pitt, not so much) but wanted to get to the book first. Of course it took me forever to even get to it. Unfortunately, I knew almost immediately that I wasn’t going to like it. I’ve attempted to read Palahniuk’s work before but it’s just so…pretentious, I feel like. Anyways, about 50 or so pages, I gave up. Started watching the movie and got as far in the story as I did in the book…

Rating: DNF 


12987216A Once Crowded Sky by Tom King

I was so looking forward to this book since I saw it at ALA. My aunt bought it for me last year at the LA Times Festival of Books and I was really excited to finally read it. Especially since I’m reading so many superhero/anti-hero comics right now. But this book..bleh it was so disappointing! I couldn’t get through twenty-something pages of it. The idea behind it is amazing, but the execution is terrible. I get that King was trying to show the reader a comic book through words but it was so frustrating and repetitive and just annoying. I was really sad that this one wasn’t what I had been hoping for.

Rating: DNF


City Love by Susane Colasanti22873037

I thought this would be a fun one to get into for the start of summer, but unfortunately it was more disappointing than anything. The first thing I didn’t like was how the characters were introduced. It reminded me of the way The Babysitters Club books would always start off (I’d always skip those pages…) Also, all the characters felt so..the same. There was a ton of insta-love which kind of drove me a little crazy. And they would all obsessively talk about how fantastic New York was (I get it!) I was about 51% done and determined to finish it, but then found out it was the first book in a series. I knew I didn’t care enough to read more so I skimmed a few more pages, saw more of the same and gave up on it.

Rating: 1/5 stars

Monthly Rewind: June 2015 + July TBR

June in one word:
Struggle

June has been a difficult month, kind of. I’ve struggled with a few personal issues, and struggled to lose more weight (I only lost 2.5lbs this month.) And I’ve also struggled with reading. One afternoon I went on a run and as the thoughts overwhelmed me, I began to sob. I was running and crying and it felt like my heart and lungs were both going to explode. But I got through it and when I was done with my run, I felt so much better. I had thought things through and realized that what is really important, is doing things that make me happy. Because this is my life and I’m the one who will live it. With that being said, June also had some very great moments and I am looking forward to more of those this summer.

5 Things that Happened in June

1. I tried a pre workout and it was really weird
2. I went to a Crossfit class and it kicked my butt but I am ready to join
3. Despite all the sad stuff, I laughed a lot and that’s something I should note
4. Was dog sitting for a few days, which was fun and bird sitting as well (and they had baby birds!)
5. Did a lot of cardio (running, walking, bike riding, and hiking)

New Books on my shelf

I decided it was time to start requesting some books for reviewing, and even though it was a slow reading month for me in June, I am excited to get to some of the review books I got and am looking forward to reading them

For review:
Absolutely True Lies by Rachel Stuhler
Very in Pieces by Megan Frazer Blakemore
Madly (The Potion Trilogy #1) by Amy Alward
A Curious Beginning: A Veronica Speedwell Mystery by Deanna Raybourn

Reading Goals

Except for the comic books, I finished both books I wanted to get through during June (Drive Me Crazy and All the Bright Places.) Since I have a few review books, I am hoping to get through all four of them this month, maybe one more but we will see.


Very in Pieces by Megan Frazer Blakemore (currently reading)
Deadpool: X Marks the Spot by Daniel Way (currently reading)
Absolutely True Lies by Rachel Stuhler
Madly (The Potion Trilogy #1) by Amy Alward
A Curious Beginning: A Veronica Speedwell Mystery by Deanna Raybourn

 

Giveaway | It’s Summer &..

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Summer weather finally arrived in So Cal. We basically have summer weather most of the year, but it’s been sort of a bleak spring. It hasn’t felt like summer yet. So when our 80 degree weather hit Monday morning, I thought “It’s here!” and went around with a smile on my face. Summertime is vacation time for me from school. I have fun and read tons and just enjoy life. It’s awesome and one of my favorite times of the year.

So with that in mind, I decided to have a little giveaway here on my blog. Since it’s been a while since I’ve had one, and I’m in such a good mood because I am excited about this weather (seriously, I cannot wait to hit the beach) I’ve set a little prize pack for one winner.

What you’ll get:
A fun summer read: To All the Boys I’ve Loved by Jenny Han
(1) $10 Fandango Gift Card for a summer blockbuster
Bookmarks, stickers and other book swag!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review | I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

Review | I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy NelsonI'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
Publication: Dial Books for Young Readers on January 1st 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Format: Audiobook
Source: Audible
three-half-stars
A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah's story to tell. The later years are Jude's. What the twins don't realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant novel from the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

Let me start by saying, I liked it. But I didn’t love it like so many did. I think part of the reason why is because I did listen to it instead of reading a physical copy, and that sort of pulled some of the magical feels I think I would’ve gotten instead. For some reason, I don’t want to make this review too long either, so let me get straight to it.

I’ll Give You the Sun is a powerful story about a twin brother and sister. It is set in two different timelines, Noah telling the 13 year old version, and Jude narrating years later at the age of 16. Many things happen to both of them, both that could’ve been prevented and that couldn’t have, which causes their strong friendship and bond to break. It was kind of weird to read both perspectives because I felt that the younger version was moving too slowly and I wanted to know how they got to their present situation.

I liked both Jude and Noah, but found them both a little peculiar and wasn’t sure how to grasp their realities. Noah sees everything like art, while Jude talks to her dead grandmother. They both adore each other immensely so it was kind of heartbreaking to see their friendship falter for so long. I am not sure how I felt about the writing, other than I did feel that the story sort of dragged on. 12 hours (almost 13) was a long time when I felt it could’ve been told in about 7 or 8 hours instead. From others I’ve read that the Chapters were extremely long, which I didn’t really notice since, again, I was listening to it.

Yes, I enjoyed it. No, it didn’t make me feel the way most people felt. I would recommend it but I would say warn you that it may not live up to the hype. Or maybe for everyone else, it does.

Take a Listen:

three-half-stars

Review | How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford

Review | How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie StandifordHow to Say Goodbye in Robot Publication: Scholastic Press on October 1st 2009
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
three-stars
From bestselling author Natalie Standiford, an amazing, touching story of two friends navigating the dark waters of their senior year.

New to town, Beatrice is expecting her new best friend to be one of the girls she meets on the first day. But instead, the alphabet conspires to seat her next to Jonah, aka Ghost Boy, a quiet loner who hasn't made a new friend since third grade. Something about him, though, gets to Bea, and soon they form an unexpected friendship. It's not romance, exactly - but it's definitely love. Still, Bea can't quite dispel Jonah's gloom and doom - and as she finds out his family history, she understands why. Can Bea help Jonah? Or is he destined to vanish?

This is a book that sat on my shelf for years. I don’t really remember what it was that made me want  to read it but I’ve been meaning to get to it forever. When I picked it up, I had no idea what it was about anymore. So How to Say Goodbye in Robot really caught me by surprise, because I had no idea what to to really expect from it. Not sure how I even feel about it now, really, because it was so…different than anything else I’ve read.

Bea and Jonah are a pair of outsiders, basically. Bea is new and has the opportunity to befriend a couple girls but instead becomes friends with Jonah, aka Ghost Boy, who doesn’t have any friends. I’m not sure if I liked either of them, but I liked seeing them develop and their friendship develop, although it felt so weird most of the time. I think I might be too used to every other book where the relationship eventually turns into something romantic, but Bea and Jonah’s relationship never really does. They care for each other, very much so, and sort of depend on each other more than the other cares to admit. But romance? Nope, not really.

The other characters, parents and…others, were all extremely unique but also not exactly likable. It’s also a little rare, I think, to see parents thrown into such negative light as both Bea and Jonah’s parents were, both for very different and somewhat disturbing reasons. It did add to the uniqueness of the story though, which led to a somewhat confusing and somewhat surprising conclusion.

Standiford’s characters and plot were unique, but her writing didn’t really stand out to me in any particular way. I’m not sure if she’s written anything else since the release of this one, and I’m not sure if I would be willing to pick up another book of hers. I wasn’t really sure what to rate this book, so I gave it an average 3 stars. Mostly because it was unique, because it has a surprising ending and, just because. I don’t not recommend it, but I also don’t recommend it either. Again, not really sure how I felt about this one, other than relieved that I finally read it after so many years of having it on my bookshelf ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

three-stars