The Art Of Going Home – Nicole Sorrell

The Art Of Going Home.jpgI received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review of the book and as part of a Goodreads Bookclub.

When Maddie Chandler was ten years old, her twin sister, Angeline, was murdered. Her mother then goes insane, being placed into an institution and with her father being who he is, Maddie is placed into the care of Aunt Ceci, who then raises and treats Maddie as though she is her own daughter. Maddie goes through high school being blamed for her sisters death, also for being constantly told that and therefore believing that wrong sister died. So, Maddie leaves this town as soon as she’s able and leaves for college. It takes her ten years before she comes back to her home town, but sadly, she only come back to attend the funeral of her beloved Aunt Ceci. But as soon as she is back, she is forced to face her troubled past that she has hidden even from herself. There is some happiness, in the form of her old high school crush Zac, her friends and her home made family. Will she find the truth behind the murder of her sister? Is she going insane or is she really seeing her sisters ghost?

I was genuinely shocked that I enjoyed this book as much as I did, simply because I thought that I thought I wasn’t going to, I put off reading it until the last minute it had to be read for the bookclub on Goodreads. There are so many topics in this book, which was surprising as it isn’t that big of a book, such as; Mystery, Romance, Crime, Death, Paranormal, that I wasn’t sure which was the main theme of the book. There is another topic/theme, but I didn’t want to include it above, as it will give away one of the main surprises to the plot of this book, but it may be a trigger warning for some.

Some of the characters did have some strong developments, and I did like the relationship between Maddie and Zac. I even liked the relationship, or lack there of, between Maddie and her father. Even the writing was good and easy to follow and once I started reading it, it took me less than 2 days to finish it. There were so many questions left unanswered when I finished this book, which left me wanting answers and unsatisfied. On saying that, there is going to be another book coming out, so maybe that’s why there were things left unanswered, as they will be included in it’s sequel, but this book didn’t leave me wanting more and I wouldn’t rush out to buy it. So for that reason, I had to give it 2.5/3 stars out of 5.

Now if you like mysteries you may like this one. It keeps you guessing right up until the last page, with constant twists and turns. If you’ve read this book, let me know what you thought of this book. Do you agree or disagree with my rating?

2.5 Stars

Blood Rights (Book 2) – Kyle Andrews

Blood RightsI received this eARC from the author in exchange for an honest and unbiased review of this book.

This is the second book in the Freedom/Hate series and it picks up from where the first book left off. I am going to try and give this review without giving away to many spoilers from this book, or from the first book, Freedom/Hate, but I give no promises sorry. So to be on the safe side, I am going to provide the description from Goodreads:

“It’s in our blood.”
The last words spoken by Uly Jacobs, seconds before his death was televised across the nation.

Since that day, the authorities have been hunting Libby Jacobs. She doesn’t know why they want her, or why they killed her cousin. Desperation has forced her into hiding with a group of people that she once thought of as terrorists. Living among them, she soon comes to realize that everything she once believed in was a lie.

Justin Becker was Uly’s best friend. He grew up with Libby. Once upon a time, he even loved her. Now, Justin has taken on the task of picking up the pieces of Libby’s shattered life. The first step will be finding Libby’s mother. She is critically ill, alone and lost in the broken system. Finding her will be difficult. Saving her may be impossible.

The city is changing. Collin Powers was nobody until the authorities turned him into a symbol. Now his ideas have taken root. His words are forcing people to question their beliefs. His sacrifice will push Freedom out of the shadows and give them the courage to start living up to their name.”

I loved this book!! How much simpler can I put it? I had been waiting for this book ever since I first read the first book, which I received and read in advance, so you can only imagine the wait. Again, thank you to Kyle Andrews, for sending me this sequel in advance and let me tell you, I was not disappointed! I thought that I enjoyed the first book, but then after reading this one, it not only reminded me why I loved the first book, but it also added so much more, to my enjoyment, my excitement, and to the development of the story and to the characters. Freedom/Hate left off with an ending that left me desperately wanting more! Literally. I remember emailing the author back screaming NOOOOOO!! You can’t end it like that! So you can understand my excitement to finally be sent and asked to read and review the eARC sequel of that book 😀

Blood Rights picks up exactly where it left off in Freedom/Hate, so yes, you definitely have to read the first book in order to understand and fully grasp everything that happens within this book. You wouldn’t be able to get away with skipping the first book, Freedom/Hate and starting with this book, hoping to grasp everything and picking everything up from what’s being mentioned. But that is the fun part. You get to enjoy the full extent of the series by actually reading the whole series. Oh, by the way, this is a Dystopian themed series, in case you hadn’t guessed.

You get to know more about other characters  in this book, while still keeping the main ones from the original. We still have Libby Jacobs, Collin Powers, and Justin has our three main characters, but now we get to see some extra characters through their interactions. We get to see more of Libby’s boyfriend Sim and her mother Amanda, but now we get to see them with the aftermath from previous events and see if and how that’s might have affected them. We also get to see more of Freedom this time round, the actual Freedom and not just the Hate that everyone has been lead into believing is the truth. We also get to see another side of HAND that we haven’t got to see yet, the inside and vicious side that nobody wants to see.

He did it again!! The author knows how to leave you wanting more because that’s how I’m left right now. I finished reading, what I thought was the end of a chapter and turned a page to find out it was the end of the book! NOOOOOOO!!! I need more. I just finished reading a book that was just under 500 pages, my copy, (Goodreads says 352 pages), in almost no time and I could’ve gladly and easily have read more. But OMG that ending!! How could he do that again. I love this series and really do enjoy reading it, which shocked me at first at how much, because this type of book, and this whole dystopian theme and type, which isn’t really my usual type. But it’s really well written, has some strong characters, and the story and plot is what makes me beg for another book to arrive sooner.

I definitely recommend you read both books in this series, and I mean BOTH books in this series, with one of my highest recommendations I can and have given so far! Prepare for the cliff-hanger ending, needing the next book immediately, but knowing you’ll have to wait, which is the only disappointment I faced. However, the third book is out now so, lets see how it can compare. 😀 😀 Super Excited!!! I give this book a MASSIVE 5 out of 5 stars!!!

Have you read any of these books? What are your thoughts? Have you read a book or series where the ending made you need the next book in series right away? Or if it was a stand alone book, what stand alone book do you think just needs to have a sequel? Comment below 😀

5-stars

Freedom/Hate (Book 1) – Kyle Andrews

FreedomHateI was sent a free eARC of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review of the book.

This book tells the story of Collin Powers on the run from the police and even worse, HAND, who have convinced the world that he’s a murderer and terrorist, involved with the terrorist organisation known to the country as HATE, who have been blamed for countless more deaths and destruction. Collin, in fact, belongs to the group known as Freedom, whose incentive is trying to get theirs and everybody’s else’s freedom back to them. This is why they are all being targeted and why even their groups name has been changed in the media to the HATE, making out that they are the bad guys. This book also tells the story of Libby, a school girl who has problems of her own, at home, at school, family problems, boyfriend problems, food problems and so much more. When it comes to Libby we get to see the side of the story of the people who are living under the lack of freedom. The lives of people who have no choice of what days they are allowed to go shopping, allowed to picked what food they pick or put on their shopping list, what extracurricular subjects they take in school, as everything is picked and allocated for and to them. No freedom. Then one day everything changes….

There is no question in my mind that I am going to be giving this book a great review, as I finished this book in two days and stayed up reading until 3 am because I couldn’t put this book down!!. This book was amazing and now I really can’t wait to read the next book in the series so I can find out what happens next. I’m really invested in the characters, even the secondary characters had some great development and has me rooting and hoping that they’re going to be okay, especially because there is death and violence in this book so you’re afraid that you’re favourite characters may actually die next.

There were some editing issues, but that’s a very small issue, which can be expected with an arc, and the main aspect takes a long time to get discovered, which annoyed me a little because it was pretty obvious. This book is set in a dystopian world, which I will admit always takes me longer to get into, because the logical side of my brain always kicks in and asks a million questions. That’s when I have to try and just sit back and escape to the place where I’m reading, but once I’m there and connected, it’s like I’m there.

This book was so exciting, with so much packed in, that it flew by so quickly, getting to the end before I realised that I had read 435 pages by the time I had reached the end of the book. This was made worse by the fact it was an eARC which meant that when I went to slide for another page, the book had ended. I need to read Book 2 fast! This is definitely a series that I see myself becoming hooked into.

I definitely and highly recommend this book!! Enjoy and get ready to get hooked to this brand new series. Massive 5 stars.

5-stars

Book Review: Replica – Lauren Oliver 

(4.5 stars)

This book took me completely by surprise and that is one of my ultimate, favourite things when it comes to reading a book. If I’m being completely honest, I picked this book up without reading the description or knowing what this book this book was about at all. I simply picked this book up because I was enthrilled by the whole layout and presentation of this book. Look at it and tell me that it doesn’t appeal to you because of how different it is from the majority of books?. I’d never seen a book like this one and with this beautiful cover, it just screamed out to me. So, I didn’t know what I was actually expecting from the storyline when I purchased this book, just that it was told from two peoples persepective, I would have to flip it upside down and that their stories, or perspectives, met in the centre of this book. 

But on saying that, I actually really enjoyed this book!! The way it works and is presented, with the storyline and how it is all written, blending together but yet having their own individuality, it was so clever. Each characters perspective is written slightly different to emulate each characters different personality and I loved that fact. There are a couple of ways that you can read this book, choosing one person’s first, Reading it in its full then continuing on by reading the other person’s story, or visa versa. However, I chose to read it a different way. I read a couple of chapters at a time and then flip it over to switch to the other characters perspective, so that it wouldn’t feel like I was reading the same book twice and I am glad I did it that way. They each select and include different things and have their own thoughts and moments to include, that when brought together make this story complete as a whole, so when reading it the way I did, I felt like I wasn’t missing anything. You do get some duplicate reading surrounding the same events, however as they are told from different perspectives, they feel like and are in themselves, different stories and need to be duplicated and I’m glad they were. 

There was so much hype that surrounded this book, even before it came out and based on my opinion, it was definitely worth all the hype that surrounded this book, even if most of the hype was about the way this book presented the two characters stories. I would’ve like a little bit more at the end, a conclusion or something, where they reached where they were heading and got to see all of the reactions and a bit more because I was looking forward to that, but we didn’t. Instead, we had to settle for a phone call, which wasn’t as dramatic as the ending I was looking forward to and a bit of a let down and I don’t want to say why as I don’t want to give away spoilers. I have found out that there is a second book coming out, so maybe that’s why this book ended the way it did, but I still had to remove half a star because of it. Edit

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, #4 – J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is the fourth book in the Harry Potter series and this is the book where everything changes. This was the first Harry Potter book that I ever read and I am so glad that I have re-read it now and am continuing to read the rest in the correct order. I discovered so much more and everything has hit me a lot more this time round. The emotions of what took place in this book and everything that was getting ready and being set up for the upcoming books is just so emotional. Knowing what’s coming, I can see everything being set up so perfectly now (possibly because I know what’s going to happen) and its so brilliantly done, which is something I never noticed before. I can’t wait to read the last three books, but they are going to be even more emotional, as it’s all hitting me a lot more now as an adult. 

Book Review: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl – Jesse Andrews

I really enjoyed reading this book and I can’t believe I held off on reading it for soo long!! I lovvve the way this book is written, with it being written as through the author, aka the main character Greg, is speaking directly to the reader the entirity of the book. Right down to the beginning of the book where there is “A note from Greg Gaines” which just added that little bit extra something. I love it. 

This book feels honest, in a brutal way. There wad no holding back when it came to things that you would think not to include and tell people about, because of the awkwardness and out of embarrassment. Especially after we find out who and why Greg is actually writing this book for. But at the same time, Greg is in some serious denial, both about his feelings and when he says how all of this didn’t change or affect him. But with all that, it just adds to how realistic this story feels. Even the title is just honest and just tells you exactly what you’re in for! But on saying that, it’s not a book that just focuses everything on Rachel and the illness, but on the teenagers, growing up and other aspects, and. the illness is just another thing in this book.

You get these little parts within the story that look like a film script, which is so fitting and suits this characters personality down to a tee. These little extras are just so perfect, especially considering this book is written in the way that Greg is meant to have wrote it, and Greg states how he more a filmmaker, not a writer. 

In the Epilogue, there is a funny little thing that was just so funny to me, because of hindsight and because I waited so long to read this book. Greg states how he want be “making a film out of this book. There is no way in hell that is going to happen.” This made me laugh so much because I know that they made a film based on this book, so I found it hilarious. 

I’m so glad I’ve finally read this book!!!

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – J.K. Rowling

wp-1488892121012.jpeg“Welcome to the Knight Bus, emergency transportation for the stranded witch or wizard. Just stick out your wand hand, step on board and we can take you anywhere you want to go.”

When the Knight Bus crashes through the darkness and screeches to a halt in front of him, it’s the start of another far from ordinary year at Hogwarts for Harry Potter. Sirius Black, escaped mass-murderer and follower of Lord Voldemort, is on the run – and they say he is coming after Harry. In his first ever Divination class, Professor Trelawney sees an omen of death in Harry’s tea leaves… But perhaps most terrifying of all are the Dementors patrolling the school grounds, with their soul-sucking kiss… ”

This is the second time within a year that I have read this book and I am not disappointed. How is it that you can read the same book within a close proximity to each other and still see it differently each time? It’s amazing. I only read this book last year because it was the only Harry Potter book that I hadn’t read and it became my favourite. This may possibly have been because I was reading it as an adult and knew roughly was going to happen because of the films and the other books, which I had read, so I already felt like I was reading it for a second time with an all knowing eye. My enjoyment of this book, made me fall back in love with this series and made me want to re-read the whole entire series again, but this time doing it right for the first time.

I was apprehensive re-reading this book again so close, but boy was I wrong to be nervous. It felt so much better reading this book this time around. Because I was doing right and I had just read Book 1 and 2 in the series already, the story carried on and it flowed that much better. All the little jokes, although deep within me made sense the first time around, didn’t need any thinking, which made me enjoy them so much. There was just so much more that I just picked up on and because of this, made the story that much more special.

This is one of the books where there is so much more in the book that is just left out of the movies, so if you decide to read this, you uncover so many more layers. The most simplest of things, such as, who wrote and created the Map that Fred and George gave to Harry. The names are so clearly there for all to see, in both movie and book, it made me feel like I had been so ignorant when I had been watching the film’s before for not noticing them before because of how obvious they were and I had to have them explained to me so clearly.

I loved everything about this book, and this is one of those few books that definitely did live up to and exceed the hype that surrounded it. The characters that you already know and love are growing up slowly and you can see it happening and I only wish that I read them in the right order so I could’ve seen that more clearly. You can see that the style of the book is growing as the age of not only the characters are growing older, but the age of the readers are also growing older alongside the characters. This is shown with the writing style and the language that takes a darker turn and with there being a more complex storyline to follow. The book is also bigger in size, as there is more of a story to tell, requiring the reader to have more determination to read and finish this book. I loved it!

I would definitely recommend this book and this ENTIRE series to everybody and to anybody who wishes to go on an adventure. I would say to start off with the first book Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone and make your way through the series in the correct order, regardless if you’ve already read them because re-reading them now as an adult are way more enjoyable now, than when I was a child. These books are NOT just for children and are fantastic reads. You will not regret it. Enjoy!!! 5 out of 5 stars.

5 Stars

Book Review: Spontaneous – Aaron Starmer

wp-1488893370918.jpeg*I was lucky enough to win an Uncorrected Proof Copy of this book in a Goodreads Giveaway, so I would first like to say thank you for choosing me as one of the winners.*

“Mara Carlyle’s senior year is going as normally as could be expected, until—wa-bam!—fellow senior Katelyn Ogden explodes during third period pre-calc.

Katelyn is the first, but she won’t be the last teenager to blow up without warning or explanation. As the seniors continue to pop like balloons and the national eye turns to Mara’s suburban New Jersey hometown, the FBI rolls in and the search for a reason is on.

Whip-smart and blunt, Mara narrates the end of their world as she knows it while trying to make it to graduation in one piece. It’s an explosive year punctuated by romance, quarantine, lifelong friendship, hallucinogenic mushrooms, bloggers, ice cream trucks, “Snooze Button™,” Bon Jovi, and the filthiest language you’ve ever heard from the President of the United States.

Aaron Starmer rewrites the rulebook with Spontaneous. But beneath the outrageous is a ridiculously funny, super honest, and truly moving exemplar of the absurd and raw truths of being a teenager in the 21st century . . . and the heartache of saying goodbye.”

When I read the premise of this book I was so excited and even more so when I won this book on Goodreads and was eager to read it. It’s not every day you read a book about teenagers/young adults just spontaneously combusting, so this definitely had me intrigued. There were some really good and enjoyable aspects to this book. This book did make me laugh, in certain parts, considering that this is a book about 17/18 year olds randomly exploding, so it’s good to have those little light hearted parts in this book. Trust me, I got some weird looks off my mum when she saw my me reading this book, which she knew was about exploding people, and randomly chuckling every now and again. Yeah, she thinks I’m kind of weird.

However, I was disappointed when it came to actually reading Spontaneous as a whole. I was expecting something more or something different, but this book just let me down and disappointed me. When it came to the development of the characters in this book, it was very sloppy and poorly done. This book is told from a first persons perspective, told from the point of view of the character Mara Carlyle, who witnesses a lot of these combustions. Considering the vast number of characters in this book, we maybe get three main characters, and a couple of additional characters who also play essential parts in the story. It is hard to therefore get strong character development on all of these characters, but even the main three characters, Mara, Tess and Dylan, I don’t believe that they had a strong enough development throughout the whole book. And the most disappointing part of the whole book is that YOU DON’T GET ANY ANSWERS at the end! It basically tells you to make up your own mind, literally. Plus, it gives you an ending where you can interpret two ways.

I was so hoping to enjoy this book way more than I actually did and all of the potential was there with the initial storyline. I think that disappointment just let this book down as I had built up this hype in my own mind. For this I am going to give this book, 2.5 stars, for the let down, the frustration, but it wasn’t the worse book I’ve read. It had so much potential!

2.5 Stars

Book Review: We Were Liars – E. Lockhart

wp-1488929385768.jpegA beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

Read it.

And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.”

I went into reading this book, completely and utterly oblivious to what this book was about whatsoever! All I knew was the title and that I had seen it popping up here and again, so I wanted to see why this book was so popular. Sometimes, I love to just dive into a book that I have no idea what it’s about. I haven’t read the description, any reviews, nothing. Just taking the cover and the title and going for it. Have you ever done that? Because that’s exactly what I did when it came to this book and I will admit that it was different to what I was expecting. Honestly, I don’t really know what I was expecting if I’m being honest.

I will admit that there were parts of this book that were a little bit blah when I was reading it. It felt like I was reading some ramblings or something and I wasn’t that keen to keep reading. It felt like a chore, which is sad because it’s only a short book, at about 200 odd pages. But then I didn’t want to put the book down and I became engrossed and felt as though I was involved in the mystery of the story. I wanted to discover the truth, just like Cady. But believe me, I was completely shocked by what I discovered towards the end of the book. That kind of ending is either cleverly or poorly executed, in order to surprise the reader and I was completely surprised and I think in this case it was cleverly done. I felt so stupid for not realising and uncovering the truth for myself, because once I knew, parts were obviously hinted at. It’s now making me want to re-read the book again, as soon as I finished it tbh, to see if I can now see the plot better and spot what so clearly put in place for the readers, especially knowing what I now know. But also to see all the ways to see where the author tried to trick the reader, seeing if I can spot any inconsistencies.

I don’t want to give too much away when it comes to this book, because I am glad that I went into it completely blind. The less you know the better. There is something that did irritate me and I’m am stilling questioning as I’m typing up this review, but that may cause a spoiler. But props to this book as not many surprised me and get me like this book did, which is why I’m giving it four stars out of five! So if you want to read a Young Adult, Contemporary book with a lot of Mystery, then give this book a read. Plus, it’s a quick read with only 227 pages.

4 Stars