Book Review: Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

21224486_102718037114814_8900334880664059904_n“Madeline Whittier is allergic to the outside world. So allergic, in fact, that she has never left the house in all of her seventeen years. She is content enough—until a boy with eyes the color of the Atlantic Ocean moves in next door.”

As most of you know, I tend to read more fantasy than contemporary YA, but I was blown away by this book! I picked this up for a read-a-thon that I didn’t complete back in the summer, but I did managed to read this book, and boy!, it delivered. This is by far one of the best books I’ve read this year. It is fresh, exhilarating and diverse – no wonder is the #1 New York Times Bestselling debut. 👏

the characters

The characters: Madeline, a young woman of half-Asian, half-black heritage is allergic to the world (rare disease called SID), confined into her house since she was a baby. Ollie, the new boy next door is charming, rebellious and full of life. What I really like about the characters is that they don’t whine, they don’t mope around.They each have their difficulties: Ollie’s father is abusive to their family, whilst Maddie is confined to her house, unable to leave and has only known the company of her nurse and her mother’s frequent visits. Both their stories are heart wrenching, however they have the ability to pull themselves together and work with what they’ve got. I really liked her nurse as well, she was a kind, warm character who understood Maddie a lot more than her own mother did at times.

The only way to describe the relationship between Ollie and Maddie is magnetic. When reading the story, it feel like they are pulled together by an unseen force, gravitating towards each other naturally, like the world is finally righting itself. I felt nothing forced about their relationship, it all falls into place the more they interact and their stories are revealed like puzzle pieces.

The characters in this book are Everything because their relationships, their hardships and sorrows is what makes you connect with each and every single one of them and to care about their lives. I will not be able to forget any time soon how angry and sad I felt after all the puzzle pieces fell together. It all does resume to the human condition, doesn’t it?

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The plot is pretty simple: girl meets boy, they fall in love, the world wants to tear them apart. Nothing I’ve not seen so far. What makes this book great, is the writing of Nicola Yoon, the way in which she is forcing these characters to act or react to show what they really made of (and that’s good stuff!). This is not groundbreaking stuff, but the characters, plot and writing complement each other so much it is hard to put down. It is the kind of book that stays with you after you finish reading it. You’re angry, happy and sad with the characters and it works great. I also thought that I might have problems with the format of the book as the characters communicate online a lot, however I found that in this instance it worked well.

I loved, hated and wept with this book, and I highly recommend it. The movie was out recently as well, however I did not had a chance to see it yet, so I will have to wait until it comes out on DVD.

Have you seen the movie or read the book yet? What did you think? Please comment down below with your thoughts and recommendations for some more diverse reads. I recently bought The hate u give by Angie Thomas and I am really looking forward to read it.

Love always,

Jane

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Children of Blood and Bone (sample) by Tomi Adeyemi – Review

cover118800-medium.pngChildren of blood and bone is a Young Adult Fantasy novel and I was lucky enough to be be able to read the first 6 chapters though Netgalley and OMG I am in love with this! Seriously, if you can get your hands on this book, do not hesitate! I repeat, Do Not Hesitate!

The book is set in a world, Orïsha, where magic was manipulated by gifted beings called the Maji. However, one night the magic disappeared and a vengeful king took the throne, killing the Maji, and punishing their children. But all of a sudden there is a shift and it seems that magic wasn’t all gone…

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Full Cover – Goodreads

 

 

Children of Blood and Bone is beautifully written, the world is seems well crafted so far, and I thoroughly enjoyed to see the situations from different perspectives, so you see the world from a Maggot’s perspective (a descendant of the Maji), as well as from the perspective of the Princess and her brother. These POV’s definitely work very well and add substance to the story, as well as tackling prejudice in different ways. I also must say that Zelie is a total bass ass! I enjoyed her fighting sequences so much, I am in love!

the writing

 

The writing is also good. I generally prefer more contemporary fantasy; books that are set in a different world I find them quite confusing and hard to relate with, however I had no problem with this one so far as the writing flows really well. The characters are also spot on and you know in who’s head you are thinking.

would i buy it

 

 

Hell’s yes! I am so excited for this book to be released! *Dreaming of an ARC right now*

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Night school by C.J.Daughterty (this review contains spoilers)

12576579“Allie Sheridan’s world is falling apart. Her brother’s run away from home. Her parents ignore her. And she’s just been arrested. Again. This time her parents have had enough. They cut her off from her friends and send her away to boarding school, far from her London friends. But at Cimmeria Academy, Allie is soon caught up in the strange activities of a secret group of elite students.” (Goodreads blurb)

I am a massive fan of novels that take place in boarding schools so I was really excited to tenor.gifread this book! However, I’m happy I learned how to cope with disappointment because I wanted to hurl this book at the wall. It gripped me from the beginning, taunting me with sweet promises and whispers of mystery to betray me in the end. I’m still steaming about it two weeks after I finished reading it.

This review contains spoilers!

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The plot follows the classic triangle formula of girl out of her comfort zone meeting the strange boy and the charming boy. Insta-attraction is a given and protagonist has a hard time choosing between them two. Some mystery and danger sprinkled on the top and voila!… the YA cake. The plot worked, but the writing and characterisation didn’t work with it, making it flop like a fish on dry land. And what kind of ending is that? Everything made me believe that there was a fantasy element to this book and… it wasn’t! IT WASN’T! It’s like somebody decided it was a good idea to throw a plot twist on the reader; I’m sorry but I didn’t enjoy the joke. The Night School was literally an after school class sort of thing where they trained to become… world influencers? I am still stunned about that twist.

the characters

The characters lacked depth, felt uni-dimensional and generally pissed me off. I really liked Allie before she went to Chimera Academy. I didn’t understand what happened to her once she got there she had some sort of personality transplant as she suddenly became docile in 2 seconds flat. I really do not understand how a troubled young person suddenly is able to abide by the rules and behave like the past doesn’t matter; made no sense.

The males providing the angles for the love triangles are sponsored by the brooding Cliche Love TriangleCarter, and the charming and awfully rich Sylvain (I see what you did there!). I quite liked Carter, he was always telling her straight, although the miscommunication between them for three-quarters of the book was borderline stupid. I knew they were “it”, but somehow the plot kept maneuvering Allie between Carter and Sylvain; the latter I never liked.

To begin with Sylvain was merely conceited, however he was soon elevated to the statue of almost-rapist. Yup, you read that right. At the whatever ball, Sylvain got Allie drunk, although I strongly believe that he spiked her drink even though he denied it and cornered her into a quiet space. “He kissed her so hard her head hit the wall and she bit her tongue. Tears filler her eyes from the blow. She struggled to get away, her fists pounding at his chest, but it was all a bit hazy and she couldn’t quite remember why she was fighting.” And this goes on and on for two pages until Carter intervenes. What the F*ck?! I didn’t understand why Allie didn’t report him to the headmistress, and why she Wtf-Did-I-Just-Read-Wtf-Meme-Imageaccepted his apology for almost raping her. She was still not convinced she wasn’t into him. What the flying f**k was that? Why? Attempting rape is not ok! Shall I repeat that? Attempting rape is NOT ok! Just because someone likes you, doesn’t give you the right to touch them against their will, and someone under the influence is not able to consent. Also, writing about a character not reporting rape is also not ok! What kind of message is that? It get even27981106 worse as Allie briefly talks with Carter about it and her thoughts are that Carter might believe that she is a slapper (British slang for slut) for almost getting raped, and he just lets her believe that it was her fault when it wasn’t! Worse thing was that Carter knew that Sylvain did this kind of thing in the past to other girls. It pissed me off the way it was dealt with and I cannot forgive it!

If you want to learn more about consent, please click here and watch this short video about Tea and Consent. Share it as well if you’d like! 

the writing

The writing wasn’t particularly bad, but the book was incredibly long for no good reason. Nothing really happens for almost two thirds of the book and when something happens it makes me want to hurl the book at the wall, so there you go. Why I continued to read it? Because I really wanted to know what was happening.

would i recomment it

No, however if you still want to read it after reading the review, please do so and let me know of your opinion. A lot of people liked this book, I didn’t, but that’s ok because we can have our different opinions, can’t we?

Xoxo 💋

Jane

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The frozen witch by Odette C. Bell (book review)

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Book cover

Lilly White opens a strange box which puts her into the path of the God of Revenge himself because the box is not an usual box…

I picked up this book firstly because it has a pretty-pretty cover, and secondly because it features witches. The frozen witch starts with a really good premise when Lilly gets herself in trouble by touching a box owned by the Gof of Revenge and it awakens powers inside of her. In order to pay for her sins now, Lily much work for Vali and bring in other sinners in order to become free again. The story is fast-paced, full of adventures, and although I loved it to bits and read it in one sitting, it feels like sometimes it lacked further development and became too rush in the quest to having things happening sooner rather than later and therefore the plot had to suffer in places. The descriptions were spot on which enabled the reader to immerse into the world. SONY DSC

In terms of characters, sometimes Lilly proved to be quite annoying, especially when she was – quite often – a quivering mess in the presence of brooding Vali. I gather that he is THE Alpha male, full of sex appeal, and manliness, and god-ness (sic!), but surely she could contain herself. The plot however, it was not in Lilly’s favour as she was mainly told to do things and expect to do or die without being explained why and how to do things! She was given a magic gun and wasn’t even told how to use it. Other characters that were supposed to support and guide her more often than not gave half the information she needed in order to achieve her goals. I was quite proud of her for managing to achieve things despite these issues.

Lilly’s relationship with Vali  is obviously strained throughout the story, partly due to her own faults, and partly to the fact that Vali seems to have two alternating personalities, however there is a flicker of romance between the two. Personally I would’ve liked to see more positive interaction between them two which would’ve made the story much better.

Overall I liked the read! I actually gulped it down, then moved to the next book, devoured that one too before finishing book thee as well. happy-jelloFlaws and all, this entire series kept me wanting more, and more.

Book four just got out in February so I am looking forward to see what happens next!

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Awakened, book 1 by Brenda K. Davies

Book coverAs everyone knows, I am a sucker for pretty covers and so I got this book with vampires at the forefront. From the maker of Twilight and hideously sparkly creatures, how badly can you fuck up?

*** Might contain peanuts and spoilers***

In this book, Serendipity is is the leading lady and when I say leading lady I fucking insult a lot of great women, so I retract that. Serendipity, or Sera, is one of Bella Swan’s multiple personalities and happens to meet this guy at a frat party and … Kaboom! love at fucking first sight. They don’t even talk and she’s consumed by these intense feelings towards a very handsome, and strong, and very manly man. Shallow much?! However, in this book we get to see what he is thinking as well, so we find out she is smoking hot, extremely shy and apparently oblivious that men are horny around her because of her sexiness. Are you really fucking joking me at this stage? A few pages after she tells him that she was crowned prom queen and she was a very popular girl in school, say what?! I understand that she is skittish around men because she was nearly raped by her boyfriend and nobody believed her, but she still knew she was beautiful as she was crowned a frigging queen at prom! That’s not just how it works. And on the same note, it is really hard for me to believe that a whole town, included her father, did not believe she was almost raped because the guy was quarterback (or something) in the football team, and said that she was actually in a car accident, and she was lying in order to ruin him. This does not even make sense! I am pretty sure that the Police can rule that out in less than half an hour and a nurse can confirm that those wounds she had on her body were consistent with attempt of rape. If you’re a writer, do your fucking homework and give me more believable shit that I can relate to, because until now you managed to piss me off really badly with these characters.

Another thing that it’s pissing me off, is their relationship. Like they meet about 15% in the book and they’re already in lovevampires-2 after three weeks of knowing each other and have sex at 30%. Yes, this book features sex scenes which look like a monkey trying to imitate Sandra Brown. Arrrrgh!!! By this time I am already fucking bored out of my mind and I’m wondering when the fuck will he reveal himself that he’s a vampire because the title suggests it, so he’d better be. We get the big reveal halfway down the book when our damsel is in distress after a lot of drama and love triangles that are not even triangles. The guy who tried to rape her in college is back to finish the business. Long story short, he cuts her throat, the vampire Liam saves her, kills the baddie, and then sucks him dry. She is obviously just lightly wounded, survives the ordeal, then he tells her what he really is, she decides that after three weeks of knowing him, and Liam lying to her twice already, she is safe enough to stay with him and love him because…lady boner?

4FX9p0tSay whaaaat? This is where I stopped. This book pissed me off so badly, especially with these scenes where she was always calming him like beauty and the beast. Just stop it already, OK? I am really fed up with this stories where love is pre-destined and she can tame the beast from within him because the power of boners is strong. Also, in this book so far, every single character is beautiful as a model. I am not freaking joking! Examples on describing Kathleen: She was a little plump, but most of her weight rested in her overwhelming chest.; on describing Michelle: She wore little makeup, but she didn’t need much to illuminate her refined features and startling beauty.; describing Sera: The girl was beautiful.; describing Liam: He was by far the most gorgeous man that she had ever seen […] he became the only thing that she could see, the only thing that she could feel. Why do all of these characters have to be over sexualised? I get it that is 18+, but this is books is an excuse for poor porn and it makes me want to be violent towards my tablet and wall.

The interaction between characters is flat and fake. Also the writing itself is atrocious! This is an orgy of adjectives and pronouns. For example, the opening paragraph: Shoving a loose strand of her blond hair aside, Sera balances her books in her arms as she searches for her keys. Finally locating them in her cluttered pocket, she pulled them free and slid them into the lock. Bumping the door open with her hip, she muttered a curse as the force of it knocked her precariously balanced books free. I can also say that this book couldn’t been a hell lot shorter! If this is the end product, I wonder how this looked before she even had an editor…

I am so disappointed in this story. It’s not like I had high hopes for it anyway, as I realized from sentence one that it would not be surprisingly delicious, but at least better than what it actually is, if that makes sense. I can even argue and say that Twilight is a far better story. It is impossible not to compare as these are both within the same target audience and genre.

I will not finish reading this book, I will stop it there, halfway, and leave it at that. The plot was so poorly done that I actually feel like the book concluded. There is nothing that I would wish to know further. We would probably find out in Breaking Dang that she is expecting and will be a bloodsucker as well, however I am fine without reading anything else written by this author. I would rather read S. Meyer, she has better characters.

half-star

Divergent (or the random acts of stupidity) – Veronica Roth

I remember the first time I found out about „Divergent” was just as I was exiting the cinema and this big, bad-ass poster caught my attention and I was immediately interested so I looked up for the book. I am a sucker for Dystopian novels and I looked forward to get home and get my hand on the book. The story had an interesting premise: in this futuristic world, sometime after “a Great War”, the people were separated into factions, according to their personalities, with strict rules: Abnegation, Erudites, Candor, Dauntless and Amity. They A9ym6mXCUAE-1Kvhave to choose who they shall be according to their personality and fall in one of the categories. The world  as they know it (which is just a city, really!) is enclosed in a high security fence guarded by the Dauntless to keep them safe (and of course they don’t wonder of what they have to be kept safe of). But 16 old Beatrice, born in an Abnegation faction discovers she is different, that she is what they call a Divergent, someone different that has to be eliminated by the system, a threat. She transfers to Dauntless where she reborn as Tris… or she should do so if not for her constant whining and lack of action.DivergentMemes_ReadBreatheRelax Tris is so boring, that most of the times I wanted to shove her over the railing and be done with! She is now a Dauntless, but besides having that super cool self-control, cannot act in any direction and she’s quite dumb. She is supposed to question the system, find what’s happening and become a fighter and a leader, instead of waiting for things to happen. She disappointed me immensely. When I bought Veronica’s Roth book I was looking for something gripping, enticing and new. I’ve read The hunger games and it’s impossible not to compare them, but I must say, that even if The hunger games wasn’t great, at least I was gripped into a story filled with action, not bored to death by a girl whose only interest is jump off trains and moan that she misses abnegation and proves herself by getting another tattoo. Plus that, Katniss had a kick-ass skill with that bow that even I find it hot! tumblr_n2gv86bPQi1qgl39lo1_250 The side characters are doomed from the beginning and there is no real evil character in this setting. We cannot count Eric just because he looks weirdly tattooed and pierced and has a smart, evil mouth. The other competitors in the “arena” are so boring and predictable that makes me poke my eyes out with a fork. I really tried to like Divergent, but I was halfway through the book and she was still wondering why she felt so weirdly hot around Four (Ha!), their mentor and awesomely-hot and rarely talking leader. Four, is her love interest, but there’s little love and even less interest as far as I was concerned. I’ve been shown more kissing and pillow talking in The hunger games than here. already named our children gifAnd of course that he is hot and drolly and if I wouldn’t know better, I’d say British too, but he’s not, because using too many clichés would make any reader puke their guts out. Instead, Veronica made him aloof, mysterious and he also does the Stare Game, just like in Twilight.

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This is Four!

*I swear to God, these people are falling in love only by staring at each other? * The story took way too much to develop into something that would hold my interest and finish reading the book, instead of abandoning it at 80% and watching the movie instead. It’s a pity because it could’ve been great, but it failed miserably. I know it’s YA, but that’s not an excuse for poor writing and miserable characters. DivergentMotto                    BUY BOOK HERE: Divergent (Divergent Trilogy, Book 1)