May 2017 Wrap Up

Despite how busy I was, May was an exceptional reading month! In May I completed my real estate course, bought a new car, went on a road trip and it was my mum’s, cousin’s and grandpa’s birthday as well as mothers day, so there was lots of celebrating. And let’s not forget that A Court of Wings and Ruin was released! I ended up reading a total of 14 and one novella, 8 of which were ARCs. There were four 5 star reads and five 4 star reads! I also got around to re-reading one of my favourite books!

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

My review    ★★★☆☆

Three sisters. One crown. A fight to the death.

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose . . . it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown.

The Cozy Life: Rediscover the Joy of the Simple Things Through the Danish Concept of Hygge by Pia Edberg

My review   ★★★☆☆

In today’s world, we’re constantly rushing from one thing to the next and are struggling with information overload. We’re more disconnected from ourselves and our loved ones than ever before. Rediscover the joy of the simple things through the Danish concept of Hygge in The Cozy Life. This book will inspire you to slow down and enjoy life’s cozy moments!

Learn about the Danish cultural phenomenon of Hygge, and the secret to why
Denmark is consistently rated the happiest country in the world
Embrace the little things and take simplicity and minimalism up a notch
Add Hygge into every aspect of your life with practical examples and tips
Say goodbye to the Winter Blues and live a healthier, centred life

This charming little book, filled with hand drawn illustrations, beautifully addresses that yearning we all have for a more authentic life, created by ourselves instead of external forces.

What’s stopping you from living a more meaningful and connected life?

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

My review   ★★★★★

A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

 

 

Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson

My Review   ★★★★☆

Mary B. Addison killed a baby.

Allegedly. She didn’t say much in that first interview with detectives, and the media filled in the only blanks that mattered: A white baby had died while under the care of a churchgoing black woman and her nine-year-old daughter. The public convicted Mary and the jury made it official. But did she do it? She wouldn’t say.

Mary survived six years in baby jail before being dumped in a group home. The house isn’t really “home”—no place where you fear for your life can be considered a home. Home is Ted, who she meets on assignment at a nursing home.

There wasn’t a point to setting the record straight before, but now she’s got Ted—and their unborn child—to think about. When the state threatens to take her baby, Mary must find the voice to fight her past. And her fate lies in the hands of the one person she distrusts the most: her Momma. No one knows the real Momma. But who really knows the real Mary?

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

My review    ★★★★☆

Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan’s life. Having missed her flight, she’s stuck at JFK airport and late to her father’s second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon-to-be stepmother Hadley’s never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport’s cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he’s British, and he’s sitting in her row.

A long night on the plane passes in the blink of an eye, and Hadley and Oliver lose track of each other in the airport chaos upon arrival. Can fate intervene to bring them together once more?

Quirks of timing play out in this romantic and cinematic novel about family connections, second chances, and first loves. Set over a twenty-four-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver’s story will make you believe that true love finds you when you’re least expecting it.

Future Leaders of Nowhere by Emily O’Beirne

My review   ★★★☆☆

“Finn’s solid. Not in body, but in being. She’s gravity and kindness and all those good things that anchor.”

“Willa’s confusing. Sometimes she’s this sweet, sensitive soul. Other times she’s like a flaming arrow you hope isn’t coming for you.”

Finn and Willa have been picked as team leaders in the future leader camp game. The usually confident Finn doesn’t know what’s throwing her more, the fact she’s leading a team of highly unenthusiastic overachievers or coming up against fierce, competitive Willa. And Willa doesn’t know which is harder, leaving her responsibilities behind to pursue her goals or opening up to someone.

Soon they both realise that the hardest thing of all is balancing their clashing ideals with their unexpected connection. And finding a way to win, of course.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

My review  ★★★★☆

You can’t stop the future.
You can’t rewind the past.
The only way to learn the secret . . . is to press play.

Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker–his classmate and crush–who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah’s voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out why.

Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah’s pain, and as he follows Hannah’s recorded words throughout his town, what he discovers changes his life forever.

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

My review   ★★★★☆

It’s a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets to the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.

Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.

Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder – would they be better off staying in this place forever?

Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.

The first in a sweeping science fiction trilogy, These Broken Stars is a timeless love story about hope and survival in the face of unthinkable odds.

Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner

My review   ★★★★☆

Can a text message destroy your life?

Carver Briggs never thought a simple text would cause a fatal crash, killing his three best friends, Mars, Eli, and Blake. Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident and even worse, there could be a criminal investigation into the deaths.

Then Blake’s grandmother asks Carver to remember her grandson with a ‘goodbye day’ together. Carver has his misgivings, but he starts to help the families of his lost friends grieve with their own memorial days, along with Eli’s bereaved girlfriend Jesmyn. But not everyone is willing to forgive. Carver’s own despair and guilt threatens to pull him under into panic and anxiety as he faces punishment for his terrible mistake. Can the goodbye days really help?

180 Seconds by Jessica Park

My review   ★★★★★

Some people live their entire lives without changing their perspective. For Allison Dennis, all it takes is 180 seconds…

After a life spent bouncing from one foster home to the next, Allison is determined to keep others at arm’s length. Adopted at sixteen, she knows better than to believe in the permanence of anything. But as she begins her third year in college, she finds it increasingly difficult to disappear into the white noise pouring from her earbuds.

One unsuspecting afternoon, Allison is roped into a social experiment just off campus. Suddenly, she finds herself in front of a crowd, forced to interact with a complete stranger for 180 seconds. Neither she, nor Esben Baylor, the dreamy social media star seated opposite her, is prepared for the outcome.

When time is called, the intensity of the experience overwhelms Allison and Esben in a way that unnerves and electrifies them both. With a push from her oldest friend, Allison embarks on a journey to find out if what she and Esben shared is the real thing—and if she can finally trust in herself, in others, and in love.

Noteworthy by Riley Redgate

My review  ★★★★★

A cappella just got a makeover.

Jordan Sun is embarking on her junior year at the Kensington-Blaine Boarding School for the Performing Arts, hopeful that this will be her time: the year she finally gets cast in the school musical. But when her low Alto 2 voice gets her shut out for the third straight year—threatening her future at Kensington-Blaine and jeopardizing her college applications—she’s forced to consider nontraditional options.

In Jordan’s case, really nontraditional. A spot has opened up in the Sharpshooters, Kensington’s elite a cappella octet. Worshipped…revered…all male. Desperate to prove herself, Jordan auditions in her most convincing drag, and it turns out that Jordan Sun, Tenor 1, is exactly what the Sharps are looking for.

Jordan finds herself enmeshed in a precarious juggling act: making friends, alienating friends, crushing on a guy, crushing on a girl, and navigating decades-old rivalries. With her secret growing heavier every day, Jordan pushes beyond gender norms to confront what it means to be a girl (and a guy) in a male-dominated society, and—most importantly—what it means to be herself.

When It’s Real by Erin Watt

My review   ★★★☆☆

From #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt comes the addictive contemporary tale of a teen rock star in need of an image makeover and the teen girl hired to be his fake girlfriend.

Meet Oakley Ford-teen celebrity, renowned pop star, child of famous movie stars, hottie with millions of fangirls… and restless troublemaker. On the surface he has it all, but with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley’s team decides it’s time for an intervention. The result: an image overhaul, complete with a fake girlfriend meant to show the world he’s settled down.

Enter seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett-devoted sister, part-time waitress, the definition of “normal.” Under ordinary circumstances she’d never have taken this gig, but with her family strapped for cash, she doesn’t have much of a choice. And for the money Oakley’s team is paying her, she figures she can put up with outlandish Hollywood parties and a team of publicists watching her every move. So what if she thinks Oakley’s a shallow, self-centered jerk? It’s not like they’re going to fall for each other in real life…right?

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

My review   ★★☆☆☆

The second installment in the epic Starbound trilogy introduces a new pair of star-crossed lovers on two sides of a bloody war.

Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet’s rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Rebellion is in Flynn’s blood. Terraforming corporations make their fortune by recruiting colonists to make the inhospitable planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.

Desperate for any advantage in a bloody and unrelentingly war, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape the rebel base together, caught between two sides of a senseless war.

The stunning second novel in the Starbound trilogy is an unforgettable story of love and forgiveness in a world torn apart by war.

One Of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus

Review coming on Saturday!   ★★★★★

Yale hopeful Bronwyn has never publicly broken a rule.

Sports star Cooper only knows what he’s doing in the baseball diamond.

Bad body Nate is one misstep away from a life of crime.

Prom queen Addy is holding together the cracks in her perfect life.

And outsider Simon, creator of the notorious gossip app at Bayview High, won’t ever talk about any of them again.

He dies 24 hours before he could post their deepest secrets online. Investigators conclude it’s no accident. All of them are suspects.

Everyone has secrets, right?

What really matters is how far you’ll go to protect them.

 

How many books did you get around to reading in May? Have you read any of these book? Let me know!

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When It’s Real by Erin Watt review

When It’s Real by Erin Watt
Published by Harlequin on May 30 2017
Genres: Young adult, contemporary, romance
Pages: 416
Goodreads

From #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt comes the addictive contemporary tale of a teen rock star in need of an image makeover and the teen girl hired to be his fake girlfriend.

Meet Oakley Ford-teen celebrity, renowned pop star, child of famous movie stars, hottie with millions of fangirls… and restless troublemaker. On the surface he has it all, but with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley’s team decides it’s time for an intervention. The result: an image overhaul, complete with a fake girlfriend meant to show the world he’s settled down.

Enter seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett-devoted sister, part-time waitress, the definition of “normal.” Under ordinary circumstances she’d never have taken this gig, but with her family strapped for cash, she doesn’t have much of a choice. And for the money Oakley’s team is paying her, she figures she can put up with outlandish Hollywood parties and a team of publicists watching her every move. So what if she thinks Oakley’s a shallow, self-centered jerk? It’s not like they’re going to fall for each other in real life…right?

I was kindly sent an e-arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

REVIEW

When It’s Real is an entertaining fast-paced read which unifies the lives of a full-blown celebrity and an imperfect 17-year-old girl. It’s fast-paced and captures your attention from the beginning chapters, it won’t be long before you find yourself at the end chapters wondering how time seemed to fly by!

The easy effortless writing of When It’s Real complements the light-hearted story and lends to the fluffy, amusing feeling of the overall story. The characters were likeable and engaging to read about. Vaughan was humble and mature for her age, and it was admirable seeing her care for her two younger brothers as her parents had passed away. Oakley was a spontaneous spirit, and it was interesting to watch his growth throughout the novel. He wasn’t exactly what you’d expect him to initially be, his outward persona is seemingly different to his inward personality. Through their slightyly forced relationship, Vaughan and Oakley uncovered alternate sides of themselves, and ultimately developed into more improved and genuine versions of themselves. Having the dual perspectives of Vaughan and Oakley gained us a better insight into both the characters, as we obtain access to their inner most thoughts and feelings.

The plot is compelling, with its doses of drama and celebrity affairs. Despite it being semi-predictable, for the most part it was an engrossing read and is a great, light contemporary to get lost in. With its happy ending, it’s definitely a feel good upbeat book. The celebrity aspect added interest to the story, with insights into the secretive world of a celebrity superstar. I also enjoyed the social media aspect of the book and I think it’s something our young generation today will have fun relating to. At the beginning of each chapter there are tweets, some of which are between Vaughan and Oakley and others which are from fans/supporters. I found this added uniqueness and a modern touch to the story.

Conclusively, When It’s Real is an entertaining read focused around two unlikely characters. If you find the life of celebrities intriguing than I definitely would recommend this book! It’s a fast, fun read that will leave you with a smile on your face by the end. I will be checking out Erin Watt’s The Royals series, as from what I gained from When It’s Real, I have a good feeling The Royals will be extremely entertaining addictive reads!

★★★

Have you read When It’s Real or Erin Watt’s The Royals series? Let me know your thoughts!

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Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday is a meme created by Marcia of To Be Continued, you can find the dedicated blog here.

PHYSICAL BOOKS

Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

Would you trade your soul mate for your soul?

A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by honor. The word of a Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love.

Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides?

Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own.

When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.

EBOOKS

Storm Siren by Mary Webber

“I raise my chin as the buyers stare. Yes. Look. You don’t want me. Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.”

In a world at war, a slave girl’s lethal curse could become one kingdom’s weapon of salvation. If the curse—and the girl—can be controlled.

As a slave in the war-weary kingdom of Faelen, seventeen-year-old Nym isn’t merely devoid of rights, her Elemental kind are only born male and always killed at birth — meaning, she shouldn’t even exist.

Standing on the auction block beneath smoke-drenched mountains, Nym faces her fifteenth sell. But when her hood is removed and her storm-summoning killing curse revealed, Nym is snatched up by a court advisor and given a choice: be trained as the weapon Faelen needs to win the war, or be killed.

Choosing the former, Nym is unleashed into a world of politics, bizarre parties, and rumors of an evil more sinister than she’s being prepared to fight . . . not to mention the handsome trainer whose dark secrets lie behind a mysterious ability to calm every lightning strike she summons.

But what if she doesn’t want to be the weapon they’ve all been waiting for?

Set in a beautifully eclectic world of suspicion, super abilities, and monsters, Storm Siren is a story of power. And whoever controls that power will win.

Spindle by E.K Johnston

The world is made safe by a woman…but it is a very big world.

It has been generations since the Storyteller Queen drove the demon out of her husband and saved her country from fire and blood. Her family has prospered beyond the borders of their village, and two new kingdoms have sprouted on either side of the mountains where the demons are kept prisoner by bright iron, and by the creatures the Storyteller Queen made to keep them contained.

But the prison is crumbling. Through years of careful manipulation, a demon has regained her power. She has made one kingdom strong and brought the other to its knees, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. When a princess is born, the demon is ready with the final blow: a curse that will cost the princess her very soul, or force her to destroy her own people to save her life.

The threads of magic are tightly spun, binding princess and exiled spinners into a desperate plot to break the curse before the demon can become a queen of men. But the web of power is dangerously tangled–and they may not see the true pattern until it is unspooled.

 

Have you read or heard of any of these books? Please let me know (no spoilers please!)

The Friday 56 (3)

 

One Lovely Blog Award

Thanks to Nadwa @ Painfully Fictional for nominating me for this award! Be sure to check out her blog, it’s amazing!

Rules for the Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and link their blog
  • Add the One Lovely Blog Award to your post
  • Share 7 things about yourself
  • Pass this on to as many people as you like (max 15)
  • Include this set of rules
  • Inform your nominees

7 facts about myself:

  1. I am a morning person, I like to wake up at around 6:00-6:30am and do my morning routine which includes journaling and meditation.
  2. I am a minimalist, except for when it comes to books, Lush products and Topshop jeans!
  3. I own around 285 physical books, with more than 200 of them being unread.
  4. I’m from Melbourne, Australia and I love where I live. I’m so lucky to be living in the most livable city in the world 🙂
  5. I lOVE travelling and have visited many places including Hawaii, Japan and Singapore! At the end of this year I’m travelling to Dubai and I’m super excited!
  6. I’m vegan and have been for a year and 9 months. I’m doing it for my health, ethics and the environment and It’s honestly one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life!
  7. I’m avid about saving the environment, and one day I want to go full zero waste!

I nominate:

Birdie Bookworm / TeenMemoir / Priyasha @ Books And Co. / Ellyn @ allonsythornraxx

 

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Noteworthy by Riley Redgate review

Noteworthy by Riley Redgate
Published by ABRAMS Kids on May 2 2017
Genres: contemporary, young adult
Pages: 400
Goodreads

A cappella just got a makeover.

Jordan Sun is embarking on her junior year at the Kensington-Blaine Boarding School for the Performing Arts, hopeful that this will be her time: the year she finally gets cast in the school musical. But when her low Alto 2 voice gets her shut out for the third straight year—threatening her future at Kensington-Blaine and jeopardizing her college applications—she’s forced to consider nontraditional options.

In Jordan’s case, really nontraditional. A spot has opened up in the Sharpshooters, Kensington’s elite a cappella octet. Worshipped…revered…all male. Desperate to prove herself, Jordan auditions in her most convincing drag, and it turns out that Jordan Sun, Tenor 1, is exactly what the Sharps are looking for.

Jordan finds herself enmeshed in a precarious juggling act: making friends, alienating friends, crushing on a guy, crushing on a girl, and navigating decades-old rivalries. With her secret growing heavier every day, Jordan pushes beyond gender norms to confront what it means to be a girl (and a guy) in a male-dominated society, and—most importantly—what it means to be herself.

I was kindly sent an e-arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

REVIEW

Noteworthy is an extremely entertaining, humorous book with lots of OMG moments, diversity and exploration of important topics. It’s a book about self-discovery, social norms and breaking barriers. Once you pick up Noteworthy, trust me that you won’t be able to put it down!

The premise of Noteworthy is undeniably amusing, a Chinese-American student who decides to disguise herself as a boy so she can gain entry into the all boys a cappella group. There were so countless moments in which Jordan was on the brink of revealing her true self that I was on the edge of my seat the entire time, watching her try to pull off this incredible feat! Not only was it absolutely hilarious but we get to witness Jordan’s self-discovery process throughout all this experience. Cross dressing as a boy opens up Jordan’s mind and she starts questioning things, namely her sexuality, gender identity and thoughts on gender roles and stereotypes. It was refreshing seeing Jordan undergo this exploration of herself as she breaks down boundaries.

There are a plethora of relevant topics that are delved into within this book such as femininity, masculinity, sexuality and gender roles. Alongside this there is great representation with a diverse cast of characters including characters that are Chinese, Indian, Sikh, disabled, dyslexic, transgender and LGBTQ+. There are characters in this book from all walks of life, including those who are wealthy and those who are struggling financially. And what I loved most was that all this diversity was normalised in this book, there was little to no discrimination toward others and everyone was so loving and accepting.

Speaking of which, I found the characters incredible! I absolutely adored all the boys in the Sharpshooters a cappella group, they were all so quirky and unique, but ultimately they really looked out for each other. They weren’t those cocky, self-centred typical teenage boys, they had depth and loveable personalities. There was a romance but it wasn’t the main focus of this book, I’m not going to say who Jordan ends up with because I feel like that would spoil the book, but I will say that I enjoyed the romance, it was both cute and heartfelt.

Noteworthy is not only a book about Jordan’s experience of obtaining a male persona and her time being a member of the Sharpshooters. It was largely about the discovery of ones self, the breaking down of barriers and rethinking social norms. If anything this book will give you a positive outlook toward diversity and will make you reconsider what you thought of society’s social standards.

★★★★1/2

QUOTES
*Quotes have been pulled from arc and are subject to change*

“It was impossible to feel alone in a room full of favorite books. I had the sense that they knew me personally, that they’d read me cover to cover as I’d read them.”

“I hadn’t given it serious thought, how my act (cross dressing) contrasted with the way some trans kids lived their lives. I was just playing a role, and trans people weren’t, so it hadn’t felt relevant, hadn’t felt like it was in the same ballpark. But it had weird echoes, didn’t it?”

“It wasn’t enlightenment to live like you had no history and no consequences. The world wasn’t just made out of instants – it was made out of plans, too, and the ability to learn from your mistakes.”

“A hint of confusion awake. What did it say that I’d gotten so addicted to my male disguise? If girlhood felt frustrating and boyhood felt freeing, did that say more about girlhood, boyhood, or me? I’d never questioned being a girl until now… But the longer I thought about the possibility that I might not be a girl, the more I became sure that I was one. I knew it innately. The struggle to fit into some narrow window  of femininity didn’t exclude me from the club. At the same time, even just pretending to be a guy was changing me. It was letting me access parts of me I’d pushed back, and parts I didn’t know I’d had, and I wanted that version of me. I liked her better. She was new, she was interesting. She felt in charge. My old self was losing traction, and as she fell further behind, I realized I didn’t particularly miss her.”

“No, the point of rivalry is not to ruin each other’s lives. It’s an incentive to make everyone better.”

“Every person I knew was such a work of art. Beauty was beauty and want was want and a beating heart was a beating heart. I was drink and my synapses were firing in sluggish delirium and everything was absolutely stupid and utterly profound.”

“I stepped into the skin of a perfected average boy, and with it came the string of self-assurance.”

“All I understood about sexuality was its uncertainty, discovering your way through yourself day by day, stepping tentatively, hitting on some term that seemed to fit and hoping it stuck.”

“kindness has no gender, had no race or age or category.”

“Maybe there was no right answer to being born filthy rich, like there was no right answer to being born dirt poor. Maybe everyone was just looking for reasons to think everyone else was ungrateful.”

“Love was a sea of red ink, and once you folded under the waves, there was no solvent that could scrub it out of your skin. You could only wait to discover what you were when you wandered out of the shallows: something rose, or crimson, or carnelian.”

“I mean, we’re so comically, laughably tiny. You know? The universe is expanding forever, and there are nebulas and a hundred billion miles away, like, spectacularly shitting out of stars, and suns collapsing every twenty seconds, and essentially what I’m trying to say is that we’re the tiniest speck of dust on an infinite space plain and our lives are these insignificant little minuscule pinpricks on the timeline.”

“Time was the rope that hung into the pit of heartbreak and I’d finally climbed over its lip. I had no desire to look back over the edge. Some things are made to end. Storms, and winters, and hurts.”

 

Have you heard of or read Noteworthy? If so, what did you think about it? Do you want to read this book after reading my review?

The Friday 56 (3)

 

Book Beginnings on Friday and The Friday 56

Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Rosecityreader and The Friday 56 is hosted by Freda’s Voice, be sure to visit their blogs!

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

Book beginning:

There’s a guy staring at me from the other end of the bar. I can only see him because I’m in the habit of leaning forward, elbows on the plastene surface, so I can see past the row of heads. From here I can keep an eye on the whole place by watching the bartender’s mirror overhead. And the guy I’m watching is using the same trick.

Page 56:

“Well you do think I’m a pretty high-grade moron.”

The Friday 56 (3)

180 Seconds by Jessica Park review

180 Seconds by Jessica Park
Published by Skyscape on April 25 2017
Genres: New adult, romance, contemporary
Pages: 300
Goodreads

Some people live their entire lives without changing their perspective. For Allison Dennis, all it takes is 180 seconds…

After a life spent bouncing from one foster home to the next, Allison is determined to keep others at arm’s length. Adopted at sixteen, she knows better than to believe in the permanence of anything. But as she begins her third year in college, she finds it increasingly difficult to disappear into the white noise pouring from her earbuds.

One unsuspecting afternoon, Allison is roped into a social experiment just off campus. Suddenly, she finds herself in front of a crowd, forced to interact with a complete stranger for 180 seconds. Neither she, nor Esben Baylor, the dreamy social media star seated opposite her, is prepared for the outcome.

When time is called, the intensity of the experience overwhelms Allison and Esben in a way that unnerves and electrifies them both. With a push from her oldest friend, Allison embarks on a journey to find out if what she and Esben shared is the real thing—and if she can finally trust in herself, in others, and in love.

I was kindly sent an e-arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

REVIEW

180 Seconds is a feel good contemporary novel, complete with an adorably cute romance, complex characters and a relatable social media aspect. This book is a crazy whirlwind of events, and trust me when I say once you pick this book up you won’t want to put it down! You’ll whiz through the story finding yourself at the end in what felt like 180 Seconds…

Let me start off by saying that 180 Seconds is my favourite 2017 contemporary read of this year so far, and that’s saying a lot from someone who’s read 57 books, yet I only rated 3 books 5 stars… 180 Seconds was one of them! Convinced yet? If not, here’s my reasons why I loved this book so incredibly much.

Trust me when I say it only takes approximately 180 seconds for you to be completely invested in this book. From the beginning, with the easy writing and relatable characters, this book pulls you in from the get go. First we’re introduced to our main character Allison, I felt like I connected to Allison in a way, she was a little bit shy, tentative and for the most part a hermit. Not to mention she also shares my love for falafel, who knew? Allison likes to keep to herself in her dorm room and isn’t particularly interested in social interactions, she was also adopted at age 16 by her wonderful father (who happens to be gay), Simon, I’ll talk about him more later. However this all changes when Allison collides with Esben, a social media star, in a social experiment. There is an insane instant attraction between the two. Esben was hands down my favourite character within the book, at first he comes off as cocky and self-centred, but as Allison and Ebsen become closer we learn that he is the sweetest most compassionate guy ever! Not only was Ebsen intelligent, insightful and deep but I especially loved how he uses his social media platform to positively impact the lives of others. Just seeing him so thoroughly invested in helping others brought joy to my heart, this book will make you believe in miracles again!

The relationship between Esben and Allison was beautiful, Esben fully respected Allison and constantly supported her. They were one heck of a duo and I loved it! In this book Allison was surrounded by people who truly cared about her and wanted the best for her. Steffi, Allison’s best friend was always reminding Allison to be the best version of herself and wanted her to live her life to the fullest. Simon is everything you want from a father, he’s understanding, supportive and most of all acts more like Allison’s friend than anything. Seeing Allison’s incredible support system and unbreakable connections she had with these people was so heartwarming and uplifting. And it was through these people that Allison could break out of her shell and discovered her true sense of self.

Despite this book seeming like a light, fluffy contemporary it also contains some darker themes. 180 seconds explores topics of cancer, death, sexuality, rape, consent and sexual assault. There is also a diverse cast of characters with characters that had been in foster care, adopted, a single gay father, numerous LGBTQ+ characters, a character that had cancer and more! This book had me laughing, crying and squealing in delight, it definitely took my emotions on a roller-coaster ride!

Ultimately, 180 Seconds is the prefect all-round contemporary novel. With a cute romance, diverse characters, important topics, it is one crazy ride, to say the least! I would highly recommend this book if you’re looking for something to cheer you up, after reading this you’ll definitely believe miracles are real!

★★★★★

Have you read 180 Seconds or any other Jessica Park novel? If so, let me know your thoughts! Do you want to read 180 Seconds?

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WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Worlds, be sure to check out her blog! To participate just answer these questions:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently reading

When It’s Real by Erin Watt

I received an arc of this via NetGalley. Erin Watt is the author of the Royals series. I have yet to read Paper Princess, but with what I’ve read so far of When It’s Real I think I’m going to pick it up soon! So far this book is a cute, funny contemporary read and I’m really enjoying it! I started this yesterday and I’m planning on finishing it today or tomorrow, it’s an incredibly quick read! My review should be up on Tuesday next week.

 

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

This Shattered World is the companion book to These Broken Stars, you can read my review of that book here. I started This Shattered World yesterday I’m only around 30 pages in, so far it’s quite interesting but it’s a bit too early on to tell if I’m really going to enjoy it. I’m also planning on finishing this on this week. My review should be up sometime next week, so keep a look out for that!

Recently read

Noteworthy by Riley Redgate

I received an arc of this on NetGalley and I LOVED it! I finished this on Monday and rated it 4.5/5 stars! This book is essentially the movies She’s The Man and Pitch Perfect combined. It’s full of diversity and great representation and I had a blast reading it! My review for this one will be up this Saturday, this book has already been published so go ahead and read it, you won’t regret it! Trust me.

 

Reading next

One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

This is another book which I received an arc of via NetGalley, this one is being released on June 1st! One Of Us Is Lying has great reviews on Goodreads and I’ve heard some amazing things about it. It’s a murder mystery surrounding a group of high school students with lots of diversity. It has been compared to the Breakfast club, so I’m super stoked to get into this one! My review for this should be up sometime late next week!

 

Have you read or heard of any of these books? If so please share your thoughts below (no spoilers please)! Let me know if you also participated in WWW Wednesday so I can check out your post! Hope everyone has a happy hump day 🙂

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Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner review

Goodbye Days by Jeff Zenter
Published by Penguin Random house on April 6 2017
Genres: young adult, contemporary, realistic fiction
Pages: 418
Goodreads


Can a text message destroy your life?


Carver Briggs never thought a simple text would cause a fatal crash, killing his three best friends, Mars, Eli, and Blake. Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident and even worse, there could be a criminal investigation into the deaths.

Then Blake’s grandmother asks Carver to remember her grandson with a ‘goodbye day’ together. Carver has his misgivings, but he starts to help the families of his lost friends grieve with their own memorial days, along with Eli’s bereaved girlfriend Jesmyn. But not everyone is willing to forgive. Carver’s own despair and guilt threatens to pull him under into panic and anxiety as he faces punishment for his terrible mistake. Can the goodbye days really help?

I was kindly sent an e-arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

REVIEW

Goodbye Days is a heartfelt story of grief, love and closure. It follows the main character Carver as he mourns the loss of this three best friends alongside the families and friends of the those involved in the accident.

Carver was an intriguing character, he was extremely insightful and introspective, his mind seemed to run one thousand miles and hour. Being a writer, Carver was incredibly expressive and it was fascinating being inside his head. I think this correlates closely with Jeff Zenter’s writing style, with its lush, vivid descriptions and poignant style, Zenter embellished every sentence with poise and preciseness. The connection between Carver’s distinct voice and Zenter’s writing created a magnificent harmony, resulting in a plethora of abstract quotes. The grievance that the characters were experiencing emanated off the pages, and I was surely alongside them, grieving in their company.

In addition to Carver, we’re introduced to an array of extraordinary people, we have Carver’s three best friends; Eli, Mars and Blake. The undeniable appreciation and love they had for one another was heartwarming. Together they had forged an inseparable bond and memories to last a lifetime. Jesmyn, Eli’s girlfriend prior to the crash, was an equally as engaging character. Understanding Carver’s grief, she supported him through his hardships, she was a rock that kept him stable throughout this mourning period. As the characters all attended a school for the arts, it was refreshing to see the abundance of creativity these characters exuded. Jesmyn played the piano, and listening to her play soon became a coping method for Carver. Jesmyn also had synaesthesia, a condition in which she visually see colours correlating to certain sounds. It was fascinating listening to Jesmyn explain the world as she saw it through her own eyes. Carver’s sister Georgia was equally as supportive as Jesmyn, another person helping him through the tough times. And we can’t forget Nana Betsy, Blake’s grandmother who raised him, she is such a sweet and adoring character, it was beautiful seeing her interact with Carver. There was also a fair amount of diversity present in the book, there is a Philipino character who is adopted, an LGBTQ+ character, an African-American character and representations of dysfunctional families. Topics of racism, LGBTQ+ and mental illness were touched upon, in a way in which they were seamlessly integrated into the story.

Despite these incredible characters however, romance wasn’t present in this book. Carver develops a romantic interest later on in the book. But this doesn’t result in a romantic relationship. Regardless, I felt that this story didn’t necessarily require romance, as its main focus is on bereavement and finding closure.

This leads into my next topic of discussion, the plot. Goodbye Days isn’t largely plot based, we follow Carver through his (mostly) usual motions. The main points of interest are the ‘Goodbye Days’, which are days in which Carver spends with the family members of the deceased in order to commemorate their life, sharing stories about their life and doing activities that they loved. This act was a way for Carver and the families of the those involved in the accident to honour the lives of those who passed as well as find closure for themselves. In saying this, Goodbye Days isn’t massively plot heavy and I found it to be a slower, more unhurried read.

Conclusively, Goodbye Days is a touching story that deals with overcoming grief and finding closure. This book had an air of mourning accompanied with the reminiscence of the joys of life. Both the characters and writing will touch your heart, leaving you with a sense of longing even after you’ve finished the last sentence.

★★★★

QUOTES
*Quotes have been pulled from arc and are subject to change*

“I sometimes look at my bookshelf now and think about how someday I’m going to die without ever reading a lot of the books there. And one might be life-changingly goog and I’ll never know”

“Night decends as a falling blanket. The city is a constellation of lights, each one representing a hand that turned on a lightbulb. A hand attatched to a mind containing a universe of memories and myths; a natural history of loves and wounds. Life everywhere. Pulsing, humming. A great wheel turning. A light blinks out here, one replaces it there. Always dying. Always living. We survive until we don’t. All of this ending and beginning is the only thing that’s infinite.”

“Sure, I’ve written a few stories here and there, but my masterwork was a two-sentence-long text message that ended three stories. I’m the only writer in the world who makes stories disappear by writing.”

“Grief is weird. It seems to come in these waves out of nowhere. One minue I’m standing in the ocean, fine. The next minute I’m drowning.”

“Sometimes, though, you want to remember every minute you spent with someone. You want to remember even the most mudane moments. You wish you had inhabited them more completely and marked yourself more indelibaly – not in spite of their ordinariness, but because of it. Because you’re not ready for the story to end. But you only discover this when it’s too late.”

“Our minds seek causality because it suggests an order to the universe that may not actually exist, even if you believe in some higher power. Many people would prefer to accept an undue share of blame for a tragic event than concede that there’s no order to things. A Capricious existence where bad things happen to good people for no discernible reason is frightening.”

“You don’t want to live life you’re constantly in the shadow of death, but unless you do that, there’ll alwys be things that went unsaid or unappreciated fully.”

“‘Will I ever be okay again?’ I ask. I expect so. It’ll take time and work. But someday your world will be put right. I’ve never found it to be a matter of purging yourself of feeling, but rather of coming to live with it. Making it a part of you that doesn’t hurt so badly. You know how oysters make pearls?’ I nod. ‘Like that,’ he says. ‘Our memories of our loved ones are the pearl that we form around the grain of grief that causes us pain.'”

“There’s a water cycle. Water never goes away. It never dies or is destroyed. It just changes from form to form in a continuous cycle, like energy. On a hot summers day, you’ve drunk water that a dinosaur drank. You might have cried tears that Alexander the Great cried. So I’m returning Eli’s energy – his spirit – and all that it contained . His life. His music. His memories, His loves. All the beautiful things in him. I give it to the water so he can live that way now. Form to form. Energy to energy. Maybe I’ll meet my son again in the rain, or in the ocean. Maybe he hasn’t touched my face for the last time.”

“I tell him I believe we are stories of breath and blood and memory and that some things never finally end. I tell him I hope, after we’re gone, there’s a day when a great wind fills our stories with life again again they rise from sleep; and that I write the best story I can – one that echoes in the void of eternities at least for a time.”

Have you read this book or Jeff Zenter’s debut novel The Seperpent King? Let me know your thoughts! Do you want to read Goodbye Days?

The Friday 56 (3)

 

Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday is a meme created by Marcia of To Be Continued, you can find the dedicated blog here.

Last week was fantastic as I found 5 paperback books for $10, that’s $2 each!

ARCs received

Odd & True by Cat Winters

Trudchen grew up hearing Odette’s stories of their monster-slaying mother and a magician’s curse. But now that Tru’s older, she’s starting to wonder if her older sister’s tales were just comforting lies, especially because there’s nothing fantastic about her own life—permanently disabled and in constant pain from childhood polio.

In 1909, after a two-year absence, Od reappears with a suitcase supposedly full of weapons and a promise to rescue Tru from the monsters on their way to attack her. But it’s Od who seems haunted by something. And when the sisters’ search for their mother leads them to a face-off with the Leeds Devil, a nightmarish beast that’s wreaking havoc in the Mid-Atlantic states, Tru discovers the peculiar possibility that she and her sister—despite their dark pasts and ordinary appearances—might, indeed, have magic after all.

The Impossible Vastness of Us by Samantha Young

I know how to watch my back. I’m the only one that ever has.

India Maxwell hasn’t just moved across the country — she’s plummeted to the bottom rung of the social ladder. It’s taken years to cover the mess of her home life with a veneer of popularity. Now she’s living in one of Boston’s wealthiest neighbourhoods with her mum’s fiancé and his daughter, Eloise. Thanks to her soon-to-be stepsister’s clique of friends, including Eloise’s gorgeous, arrogant boyfriend Finn, India feels like the one thing she hoped never to be seen as again: trash.

But India’s not alone in struggling to control the secrets of her past. Eloise and Finn, the school’s golden couple, aren’t all they seem to be. In fact, everyone’s life is infinitely more complex than it first appears. And as India grows closer to Finn and befriends Eloise, threatening the facades that hold them together, what’s left are truths that are brutal, beautiful, and big enough to change them forever…

Physical books

Spellcaster by Claudia Gray

When Nadia’s family moves to Captive’s Sound, she instantly realizes there’s more to it than meets the eye. Descended from witches, Nadia senses a dark and powerful magic at work in her new town. Mateo has lived in Captive’s Sound his entire life, trying to dodge the local legend that his family is cursed – and that curse will cause him to believe he’s seeing the future … until it drives him mad. When the strange dreams Mateo has been having of rescuing a beautiful girl—Nadia—from a car accident come true, he knows he’s doomed.

Despite the forces pulling them apart, Nadia and Mateo must work together to break the chains of his family’s terrible curse, and to prevent a disaster that threatens the lives of everyone around them. Shimmering with magic and mystery, New York Times bestselling author Claudia Gray’s new novel is sure to draw fans of the Hex Hall and Caster Chronicles series, and fans of the hit CW TV show The Secret Circle.

Steadfast by Claudia Gray

Nadia, Mateo, and Verlaine have saved Captive’s Sound from the dark Sorceress Elizabeth…or so they thought. Despite their best efforts, a crack opened and a new, greater evil seeped through. With Mateo as her Steadfast, Nadia’s magic is magnified and she is more powerful than ever. But there is still so much she doesn’t know about the craft, leaving her open and vulnerable to a darker magic…which has begun to call Nadia’s name.

 

 

 

 

Sorceress by Claudia Gray

To save the lives of countless people in Captive’s Sound, Nadia has sworn herself to the One Beneath, to black magic. Her plan, and the town’s only hope, is for Nadia to learn enough sorcery to strike back against the forces of darkness. But now that she’s separated from her friends, her family, and her Steadfast, Mateo, Nadia is more vulnerable than ever to darkness. And as the sorceress Elizabeth summons torrential rains and brings the One Beneath closer to the mortal world, Nadia is running out of time to stop her. The final battle lines are drawn, surprising alliances are made, and true love is tested in the action-packed conclusion to the breathtaking Spellcaster series.

Sorceress is richly woven with New York Times bestselling author Claudia Gray’s signature dark magic, captivating mystery, and star-crossed romance.

Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder

Hunted, Killed—Survived?

As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avry of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of her friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomanical King Tohon from winning control of the Realms, Avry is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confident, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle.

Though she should be in hiding, Avry will do whatever she can to support Tohon’s opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon’s most horrible creations yet; an army of the walking dead—human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat.

War is coming and Avry is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible … again

Iron Warrior by Julia Kagawa

The Iron Prince—my nephew—betrayed us all.

He killed me.

Then, I woke up.

Waking after a month on the brink of death, Ethan Chase is stunned to learn that the Veil that conceals the fey from human sight was temporarily torn away. Although humankind’s glimpse of the world of Faery lasted just a brief moment, the human world has been cast into chaos, and the emotion and glamour produced by fear and wonder has renewed the tremendous power of the Forgotten Queen. Now, she is at the forefront of an uprising against the courts of Summer and Winter—a reckoning that will have cataclysmic effects on the Nevernever.

Leading the Lady’s Forgotten Army is Keirran himself: Ethan’s nephew, and the traitor son of the Iron Queen, Meghan Chase.To stop Keirran, Ethan must disobey his sister once again as he and his girlfriend, Kenzie, search for answers long forgotten. In the face of unprecedented evil and unfathomable power, Ethan’s enemies must become his allies, and the world of the fey will be changed forevermore.

eBooks

Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

The only daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has always known she’d been raised for one purpose and one purpose only: to marry. Never mind her cunning, which rivals that of her twin brother, Kenshin, or her skills as an accomplished alchemist. Since Mariko was not born a boy, her fate was sealed the moment she drew her first breath.

So, at just seventeen years old, Mariko is sent to the imperial palace to meet her betrothed, a man she did not choose, for the very first time. But the journey is cut short when Mariko’s convoy is viciously attacked by the Black Clan, a dangerous group of bandits who’ve been hired to kill Mariko before she reaches the palace.

The lone survivor, Mariko narrowly escapes to the woods, where she plots her revenge. Dressed as a peasant boy, she sets out to infiltrate the Black Clan and hunt down those responsible for the target on her back. Once she’s within their ranks, though, Mariko finds for the first time she’s appreciated for her intellect and abilities. She even finds herself falling in love—a love that will force her to question everything she’s ever known about her family, her purpose, and her deepest desires.

The Love Interest by Cale Dietrich

There is a secret organization that cultivates teenage spies. The agents are called Love Interests because getting close to people destined for great power means getting valuable secrets.

Caden is a Nice: The boy next door, sculpted to physical perfection. Dylan is a Bad: The brooding, dark-souled guy, and dangerously handsome. The girl they are competing for is important to the organization, and each boy will pursue her. Will she choose a Nice or the Bad?

Both Caden and Dylan are living in the outside world for the first time. They are well-trained and at the top of their games. They have to be – whoever the girl doesn’t choose will die.

What the boys don’t expect are feelings that are outside of their training. Feelings that could kill them both.

Rides by Veronica Rossi

Nothing but death can keep eighteen-year-old Gideon Blake from achieving his goal of becoming a U.S. Army Ranger. As it turns out, it does.

While recovering from the accident that most definitely killed him, Gideon finds himself with strange new powers and a bizarre cuff he can’t remove. His death has brought to life his real destiny. He has become War, one of the legendary four horsemen of the apocalypse.

Over the coming weeks, he and the other horsemen—Conquest, Famine, and Death—are brought together by a beautiful but frustratingly secretive girl to help save humanity from an ancient evil on the emergence.

They fail.

Now—bound, bloodied, and drugged—Gideon is interrogated by the authorities about his role in a battle that has become an international incident. If he stands any chance of saving his friends and the girl he’s fallen for—not to mention all of humankind—he needs to convince the skeptical government officials the world is in imminent danger.

But will anyone believe him?

Seeker by Veronica Rossi

When Daryn claimed she was seeing visions during her sophomore year of high school, no one believed the truth.

She wasn’t losing her mind; she was gaining the Sight—the ability to see the future. Daryn embraced her role as a Seeker. The work she did was important. She saved lives.

Until Sebastian.

Sebastian was her first—and worst—mistake.

Since the moment she inadvertently sealed him in a dark dimension with Samrael, the last surviving demon of the Kindred, guilt has plagued her. Daryn knows Sebastian is alive and waiting for help. It’s up to her to rescue him. But now that she needs the Sight more than ever to guide her, the visions have stopped.

Daryn must rely on instincts, intelligence, and blind faith to lead the riders who are counting on her in search of Sebastian. As they delve into a shadowy realm where nothing is as it seems and where Samrael is steadily amassing power, Daryn faces the ultimate test. Will she have to become evil to destroy evil?

The very fate of humankind may rest in the answer.

Marlena by Julie Buntin

An electric debut novel about love, addiction, and loss; the story of two girls and the feral year that will cost one her life, and define the other’s for decades

Everything about fifteen-year-old Cat’s new town in rural Michigan is lonely and off-kilter, until she meets her neighbor, the manic, beautiful, pill-popping Marlena. Cat, inexperienced and desperate for connection, is quickly lured into Marlena’s orbit by little more than an arched eyebrow and a shake of white-blond hair. As the two girls turn the untamed landscape of their desolate small town into a kind of playground, Cat catalogues a litany of firsts—first drink, first cigarette, first kiss—while Marlena’s habits harden and calcify. Within the year, Marlena is dead, drowned in six inches of icy water in the woods nearby. Now, decades later, when a ghost from that pivotal year surfaces unexpectedly, Cat must try to forgive herself and move on, even as the memory of Marlena keeps her tangled in the past.

Alive with an urgent, unshakable tenderness, Julie Buntin’s Marlena is an unforgettable look at the people who shape us beyond reason and the ways it might be possible to pull oneself back from the brink.

 

And That’s all the books I acquired last week! Let me know if you’ve read any or if any of them are on your TBR! I’d love to hear your thoughts

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