May 2016 Wrap Up

  • The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater –
  • Everlasting by Elizabeth Chandler –
  • Everafter by Elizabeth Chandler –
  • Someone Like You by Sarah Dessen –
  • Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (re-read) –
  • You Are Here by Jennifer E. Smith –
  • That Summer by Sarah Dessen – ★★★☆☆
  • Summer Days and Summer Nights edited by Stephanie Perkins –
  • Forever Innocent by Deanna Roy –
  • After the Rain by Renee Carlino –

Total Books: 10
Average Rating: ☆ (3.6 stars technically)

This month was about half and half. It seemed like one book was really good and then the next was a let down. I’m hoping June treats me a little better.

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Stacking The Shelves – May 28, 2016

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Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

If you want to find out more about Stacking The Shelves, please visit the official launch page!


after the rain

From Barnes & Noble:

  • After the Rain by Renee Carlino

Just one book this week! I don’t even care because it’s such a perfect book. I’m about halfway through with it and already it’s one of my faves of 2016.

Did you get any exciting new books this week?

Review – Summer Days & Summer Nights

REVIEW

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Title: Summer Days and Summer Nights

Edited by: Stephanie Perkins

Authors: Leigh Bardugo, Frencesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Brandy Colbert, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, Nina LaCour, Stephanie Perkins, Veronica Roth, Jon Skovron, Jennifer E. Smith

Originally Published: May 17th 2016

Format: Hardcover

Pages: 384

Rating: ★★☆☆ (3/5 stars)

Synopsis: Maybe it’s the long, lazy days, or maybe it’s the heat making everyone a little bit crazy. Whatever the reason, summer is the perfect time for love to bloom. Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories, written by twelve bestselling young adult writers and edited by the international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins, will have you dreaming of sunset strolls by the lake. So set out your beach chair and grab your sunglasses. You have twelve reasons this summer to soak up the sun and fall in love.

This was not nearly as good as the winter themed anthology by Stephanie Perkins – My True Love Gave To Me. I don’t know if it’s because of the different authors that were selected or just that I probably prefer stories about Christmas rather than those that go on and on about the sweltering heat. Also could be that I’m not that into anthologies but who knows.

I actually kept track of each story through my Goodreads updates so I’m just going to copy and paste those here and then add on anything I might also want to add.


  • 3.5 stars to Head, Scales, Tongue, Tail by Leigh Bardugo
    • This one was good… a bit confusing as first to figure out who was who but I loved the plot

  • 4 stars to The End of Love by Nina LaCour. Bonus points for being LGBT+ friendly
    • This was a great LGBT+ story that would’ve been great as a full-length novel. Like maybe I’d prefer a prequel to this?

  • 2 stars to Last Stand At The Cinegore by Libba Bray. Basically it was the epitome of a straight white boy.
    • Like I said….. this was very Heterosexual (TM). Like in your face. All the MC thinks about is having sex with this girl who is, of course, Not Like The Other Girls At All. Then the author tries to make up for it by giving him a gay best friend who was so terribly written.

  • 1 star to Sick Pleasure by Francesca Lia Block. I felt so disconnected from the characters and honestly.. the writing and story were just really bad.
    • I don’t even know… this story had no point to it? I can’t really say anything beyond that without spoilers but if you’re going to read this anthology and plan on skipping some of the stories… this is the one to skip.

  • 4 stars to In Ninety Minutes, Turn North by Stephanie Perkins
    • Probably helps that I was already familiar with these characters from Perkins’ other anthology. I didn’t like how it started but I did love how it ended.

  • 4 stars to Souvenirs by Tim Federle. I love stories about really great people breaking up with insensitive jerks and realizing they deserve better and that’s exactly what this story gave me.
    • Another LGBT+ friendly story! I loved the MC and wish I could read more about him after the events of this story.

  • 3 stars to Inertia by Veronica Roth. It was a little hard to get into but got better as it progressed though it did feel a bit much for a short story.
    • Reminded me of that movie “Never Let Me Go”. You know, with Carey Mulligan and Andrew Garfield. I haven’t seen that movie in a while and really don’t remember much but this story gave me that vibe.

  • 3.5 stars to Love Is The Last Resort by Jon Skovron. It was good but the way it was written makes me feel like it would be better as a movie.
    • It took me way too long to remember what this one was about… Anyways it kind of makes me think of Clue (but without the murder) and The Suite Life of Zach and Cody. Weird combination but okay. Plus like I said it feels like it would have been better as a movie or something… the whole thing was narrated from some unknown character and I kept thinking that if it were a movie, Morgan Freeman would be that narrator.

  • 3 stars to Goodluck and Farewell by Brandy Colbert. This one just kinda fell flat to me? Like it was good but there was just nothing that made me really want to keep reading.
    • I honestly can’t think of anything significant about this story other than the fact that it had pretty much the only POC characters out of the whole anthology.

  • 2.5 stars to Brand New Attraction by Cassandra Clare. Nice premise but I don’t like her writing.
    • Maybe it could just be that I don’t like Cassandra Clare??? Going into this story I thought maybe I’d like it but then it just got weirder and made me think of how I felt when reading City of Bones – she just tries to put so much into one story that it feels overdone.

  • 5 stars to A Thousand Ways This Could All Go Wrong by Jennifer E. Smith. This has been by far my favorite from this anthology. It perfectly captures the feel of summer. Jennifer E. Smith writes characters with so much depth and that’s what made this amazing.
    • !!!!!!!!!!!! As I said, Smith gives her characters depth. But she does it in such simple ways like dropping small bits of information about them and it’s like… wow I feel like I’ve known this person my entire life.

  • 4 stars to The Map Of Tiny Perfect Things by Lev Grossman. This was my favorite out of the non-contemporary stories. Anything with messed up timelines usually interests me so I’m not surprised that I liked this one.
    • Basically it’s Groundhog Day with only two people who know that time is repeating itself. I loved this story and the characters. As with most time-related stories, there were some plotholes and I still have some questions. But really this is the only story from the whole anthology that felt right as a short story.

Have you read this collection of short stories? Did any of them stick out to you? Let me know!

WWW Wednesday – May 25

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WWW Wednesday is hosted by Taking on a World of Words

The Three Ws are:

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

What are you currently reading?

forever innocentForever Innocent by Deanna Roy

“Our baby died on prom night, and nothing was ever the same again.”

Corabelle doesn’t feel like any of the other college girls. On what should have been one of the happiest nights of her life, she and her boyfriend Gavin watched a nurse disconnect the ventilator from their seven-day-old baby. During the funeral two days later, Gavin walked out and never returned.

Since then, her life has been a spiral of disasters. The only thing that has helped is her ability to black out whenever the pain gets too hard to bear, a habit that has become an addiction.

When Gavin shows up in her astronomy class four years later, he is hell-bent on getting her back, insisting she forgive him. Corabelle knows she can’t resist the touch that fills the empty ache that has haunted her since he left. But if he learns what she has done, if he follows the trail back through her past, her secrets will destroy their love completely. And once again, she’ll lose the only person who always believed she was innocent.

I’m still not decided about how I feel about this. Some parts are super good but then other parts are really bad and very cliche.

What did you recently finish reading?

that summerThat Summer by Sarah Dessen

The more things change…

As far as Haven is concerned, there’s just too much going on.

Everything is changing, and she’s not sure where she fits in.

Then her sister’s old boyfriend shows up, sparking memories of the summer when they were all happy and everything was perfect…

But along the way, Haven realizes that sometimes change is a good thing.

Probably not a good sign that I don’t remember much of this right?


summer days

Summer Days and Summer Nights edited by Stephanie Perkins

Maybe it’s the long, lazy days, or maybe it’s the heat making everyone a little bit crazy. Whatever the reason, summer is the perfect time for love to bloom. Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories, written by twelve bestselling young adult writers and edited by the international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins, will have you dreaming of sunset strolls by the lake. So set out your beach chair and grab your sunglasses. You have twelve reasons this summer to soak up the sun and fall in love.

Featuring stories by Leigh Bardugo, Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Brandy Colbert, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, Nina LaCour, Stephanie Perkins, Veronica Roth, Jon Skovron, and Jennifer E. Smith.

This was kind of a let down. Out of the 12 different stories I think I enjoyed maybe 4 of them? But also part of me hopes that Stephanie Perkins makes another anthology like this… maybe an autumn themed one?

What do you think you’ll read next?

after the rainAfter The Rain by Renee Carlino

I’m very desperately hoping this arrives in the mail later today. Maybe tomorrow. I’ve been dying to read another book by Carlino so I hope this one doesn’t disappoint!

 

What are you reading this week? Have you read any of these books? Let me know!

 

Musing Mondays – 5/23/2016

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Musing Mondays is hosted at Books And A Beat, where a certain question is asked every week. This week’s question: Name a book you thought you wouldn’t like, but ended up loving.

My first thoughts went to Six of Crows. It’s a fantasy setting which I normally can’t get into but the characters were so fantastic and kept me hooked.

six of crowsTitle: Six of Crows

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Pages: 465

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge.

A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.

A runaway with a privileged past.

A spy known as the Wraith.

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.

A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Kaz’s crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

 

Stacking The Shelves – May 21, 2016

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Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

If you want to find out more about Stacking The Shelves, please visit the official launch page!


From Book Outlet’s awesome Mother’s Day Sale:

  • Hopeless by Colleen Hoover
  • The Outlandish Companion vol. 2 by Diana Gabaldon
  • Spellcaster by Claudia Gray
  • Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick
  • Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
  • Cress by Marissa Meyer
  • Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
  • That Summer by Sarah Dessen

I’d read Hopeless, Spellcaster and Silence beforehand so these were just to add to my collection. I’ve already read That Summer since ordering it and it was pretty good! Hopefully with the two Lunar Chronicles purchases I’ll finally finish the series!


 

From the public library:

  • Slammed by Colleen Hoover
  • Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover
  • This Girl by Colleen Hoover
  • Never Never by Colleen Hoover and Tarryn Fisher

I really don’t know if I’ll read these before they’re due back at the library. They were really just books I picked up because I didn’t want to just go to the library for one movie.


From Barnes & Noble:

  • Summer Days and Summer Nights edited by Stephanie Perkins

I’ve read the first story in this anthology which was written by Leigh Bardugo. I really liked it but I feel like either it should’ve been shorter or just a bit longer.

I also started a free two month trial for a B&N membership! Loving the free shipping. I just wish I had an actual B&N in my town instead of Books a Million.

Free download from Amazon:

  • Forever Innocent by Deanna Roy

This was a total impulse buy. I don’t know.. it was late at night and I was scrolling through facebook. There happened to be an ad for this series and I usually ignore ads but this looked pretty good. I’m 20% done with it and I like it but I don’t know if I’ll like it enough to read the rest of the series.

Have you read any of these books? Are they sitting on your shelves? Let me know 🙂

 

WWW Wednesday – May 18

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WWW Wednesday is hosted by Taking on a World of Words

The Three Ws are:

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

What are you currently reading?

that summer

That Summer by Sarah Dessen

The more things change…

As far as Haven is concerned, there’s just too much going on.

Everything is changing, and she’s not sure where she fits in.

Then her sister’s old boyfriend shows up, sparking memories of the summer when they were all happy and everything was perfect…

But along the way, Haven realizes that sometimes change is a good thing.

I’ve only read the first few pages so I’m not sure if I like it or not. I’ve liked the other Dessen books I’ve read so far and I’m hoping this one goes well also.

What did you recently finish reading?

simon vs

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

This was a re-read and every bit as perfect as the first time I read it.


you are here

You Are Here by Jennifer E. Smith

Sometimes to find out where you’re going, you have to discover what you’ve left behind: Two teens hit the road in this breathtaking novel from Jennifer E. Smith, author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight.

Emma and her neighbor Peter are both lonely in a way that only bothers them occasionally. They both come from families they don’t quite understand. They both feel like something big is missing from their lives and they’re both about to search for answers. When Emma makes a discovery that shakes the foundations of her identity, she convinces Peter to join her for a road trip. Each of them has something to find: For Emma, it is a grave – a grave that may be her only connection to her family. Peter is seeking something harder to define, but perhaps easier to navigate – a freedom, a sense of something more than what he has. Together, they take to the open road, engaging in a universal quest to make sense of who they are and where they come from and learning a thing or two about love along the way.

Not my favorite by Smith but still good. I’d rather recommend ‘The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight‘ if you haven’t read anything by this author and want a quick read.

What do you think you’ll read next?

summer days

Summer Days and Summer Nights edited by Stephanie Perkins

I really liked the anthology ‘My True Love Gave To Me‘, also edited by Perkins. This one has different authors, many of which I’ve never read before so I’m pretty excited to read it. I’m expecting it in the mail sometime later in the week and I’ll be starting on it as soon as it’s delivered.

What are you reading this week? Have you read any of these books? Let me know!