Category Archives: Review

Book Review: The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave #2) by Rick Yancey

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16131484The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave #2) by Rick Yancey

Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Published September 16th 2014 by Putnam Juvenile
Source: The Library

How do you rid the Earth of seven billion humans? Rid the humans of their humanity.

Surviving the first four waves was nearly impossible. Now Cassie Sullivan finds herself in a new world, a world in which the fundamental trust that binds us together is gone. As the 5th Wave rolls across the landscape, Cassie, Ben, and Ringer are forced to confront the Others’ ultimate goal: the extermination of the human race.

Cassie and her friends haven’t seen the depths to which the Others will sink, nor have the Others seen the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate. – Goodreads

Review: Overall, the book was wow. It picks up right away from where the first book, The 5th Wave, ended. They are holed up in a motel and Cassie is waiting for Evan. Ben… you have no chance anymore… Its all about Evan now. To say the least that the team has been through a lot is saying something. They need to find a more permanent shelter especially now that there are more of them and they need to find the other survivors. The plan they have seems solid. Until of course things go wrong, as they are likely to do during an alien invasion. Ringer takes on a more main character role in the books than she did in the first and we see her transform from the bratty doesn’t believe in anything, doesn’t care about anyone to understanding Evan and who he is as well as understanding more about the aliens and who they are.
Cassie– Cassie is still kicks butt but not as much as in the first, I feel like that is because we had to learn more about Ringer and her journey. However, we see her making the choice between the guys basically as she sees how broken Ben is and so is Evan, however, mentally broken versus body broken is different. We see how much she cares about both of them as well as Nugget. I feel like she also takes a step back because she feel left out of the team as they all have their military nicknames and she doesn’t and they all know each and her brother isn’t the same anymore, he is harder and tries to act less like a child and more like a soldier.
Ringer– Ringer and Cassie do not get along. Ringer doesn’t want to believe anything Cassie tells her about the Silencers or Evan or surviving outside the compound it seems like. We also learn about her history and why she is the way that she is. But then her story changes as she also begins to experience love or atlas liking someone and then her story really changes as she realizes about her connections to other people especially Teacup and what she is willing to do for her. She also discovers the truth about the aliens after her capture and what they do to her makes her understand Evan more. The way she also saw the world and how she changes makes me root for her.
Ben– Ben is just broken. He has kind of given up and Cassie is trying to pick him up to make him want to live, we don’t really get his perspective in this book.
Evan– Evan is sticking to his save Cassie, must save Cassie at all costs. He is willing to sacrifice himself again to save Cassie. He is totally in love with her. After the explosion of the base in 5th Wave his body is more or less broken. He is rescued by another Silencer who tries to make him fall in love with her but even with the broken body he finds Cassie and there things go bonkers. I feel like he sacrifices too much for Cassie and she is getting annoyed with it because she wants him to stay with her and not die.
Overall, the book was fast paced and I couldn’t put it down. The next and last book in the trilogy is coming out in May 24th and I can’t wait to get it to read. I wonder who Cassie will finally choose and if the Others are going to win in the end or not. I’m also really curious on what’s happening with Ringer and how it will affect the group.
5 out of 5
Other reviews:

Book Review: The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave #1) by Rick Yancey

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17899336The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave #1) by Rick Yancey

Audible Audio, Unabridged, 13 pages
Published May 7th 2013 by Penguin Audio
Source: The Library
After the 1st wave, only darkness remains.
After the 2nd, only the lucky escape.
And after the 3rd, only the unlucky survive.
After the 4th wave, only one rule applies: trust no one.Now, it’s the dawn of the 5th wave, and on a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs from Them. The beings who only look human, who roam the countryside killing anyone they see. Who have scattered Earth’s last survivors. To stay alone is to stay alive, Cassie believes, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan Walker may be Cassie’s only hope for rescuing her brother–or even saving herself. But Cassie must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death. To give up or to get up. – Goodreads
Review: This was so much fun to listen to. I feel like the book ended faster listening to it then by reading and I think this book got me so excited to start listening that it got to me to start listening to more books. It also made it really easy to do other errands at the same time. I think that might be partially why I enjoyed the book so much. 🙂 (Love multitasking.)
Anyways on to the actually book review. Overall, the book was fast paced, action packed, and very nice character developement. There were amazing plot twists and the twists were ones that were completely unexpected.
The plot: I loved the way that the book began with Cassie shooting the Crucifix soldier and how it works throughout the book in how it’s brought out in the choices she makes. I found it interesting the way it jumped back and forth between Ben and Cassie and how you were able to see the comparison of the two characters and how their lives changed. The comparison was pretty neat to see what happens if you were one of the kids that was put on the bus vs one that wasn’t. The main question for me in that aspect however is, why did they take Ben and not Cassie? They are the same age but yet Cassie wasn’t allowed on the bus. The rescue of Evan was also kinda of really awesome and but the kind of trust he shows was suspicious and Cassie being suspicious the entire book of him was spot on and I love how Yancey alluded to Evan’s “condition” throughout.
The charaters: Cassie was awesome. I loved the way the book started with her having to show the hard choices she has to make in this new world. I also love how she explains the way that the Others took over the planet and how they wiped everyone out. I also love how she sees herself as so normal and unremarkable and a regular teenager but yet she grows into a badass. I loved that she takes almost every opportunity to learn something from Evan. And how at the end when it comes down to saving her brother you got to see everything she learned come together and she even surprises herself I think by how much she has learned.
Ben/Zombie… Ben just starts off cool from how we see him in Cassie’s eyes and declines from there. The interesting part for his parts in the book is that we can see what its like to be one of those that get on the bus. That gets “rescued” and how he gets trained to kick butt. The only difference is that he appears to have lost his hand eye coordination, because he can’t shoot a gun. And he appears to have become a little broken due to loss of his entire family. This is the comparison to Cassie, she also lost her family (included her brother because he got taken away) but she strives to get better and find him while Ben gives up sort of and just tries to take care of “Nugget.”
Evan, oh dreamy dreamy Evan. He is amazing. He made her a HAMBURGER… and made the bread himself… What can’t he do? That’s all I want to know. What can’t Evan Walker do? I think that’s something that Cassie was also wondering. He knows how to cook, hunt and fight. I think that that is something important to look for in this type of environment/world and I think that’s what makes feel so safe with him. But he is very suspicious. Where does he go when he isn’t with Cassie? He is just a mysterious character and then when we find out along with Cassie what he does and discover his story… OMG!!! I will not spoil it for those of you that haven’t read and are considering reading this but let me just say WOAH. It’s a good one.
The book was just amazing. I don’t think I stopped listening to it at all once I played it and stayed up at night to listen. It was that good. It kept me on the edge of my seat and it just rocked.
Rating: 5 out of 5
Other Reviews:

Review: Every Last Promise by Kristin Halbrook

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Every Last Promise by Kristin Halbrook

Paperback, 288 pages

Published April 21st 2015 by HarperTeen

Source: Publisher for honest review

Perfect for fans of Laurie Halse Anderson and Gayle Forman, Every Last Promise is a provocative and emotional novel about a girl who must decide between keeping quiet and speaking up after witnessing a classmate’s sexual assault.

Kayla saw something at the party that she wasn’t supposed to. But she hasn’t told anyone. No one knows the real story about what happened that night—about why Kayla was driving the car that ran into a ditch after the party, about what she saw in the hours leading up to the accident, and about the promise she made to her friend Bean before she left for the summer.

Now Kayla’s coming home for her senior year. If Kayla keeps quiet, she might be able to get her old life back. If she tells the truth, she risks losing everything—and everyone—she ever cared about. – Goodreads

Review: From the start I knew/expected what the book would be like based on the subject matter however, I didn’t expect it to depress me as much it did. It’s a story about a girl, Kayla, who goes through something extreme in her life. It makes her question many things and we don’t necessarily find out what it is until about three quarters of the book. Which I think is really good because that way we get to experience what someone who is going through something like this must be experiencing. (I don’t want to say what that something is as it might be a spoiler, and I don’t want to spoil the book for anyone.) Anyways throughout the book, I kept thinking how similar this seems to be to Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson.

Anyways, back to plot, I didn’t read the synopses of the story and just dived right into it. Kayla is from the perfect, small town with the super close community in which everyone knows everybody. And once Kayla does the “inexplicable” to the community by causing an accident after witnessing a crime, she is, for lack of better words, ostracized by the community and her friends. However she does make one friend in particular that somehow knows something about what she saw and why she had the accident. Throughout the story, Kayla struggles with the way everyone is treating her and with the decision of telling or not telling the truth.

The writing in the book is very good. Like I said earlier, as soon as I got through about twenty pages, the writing reminded me very much of Laurie Halse Anderson’s writing and especially of Speak. The story is also very similar, in regards to subject matter, perpetrator, even the treatment of the main character. Throughout the story, the way that Kayla reacts to the treatment that she receives is very interesting because if I was put in that situation, I would be telling the reason for the accident. However, she was also thinking about protecting herself all the same and the victim. What made the situation even worse however, is that in comparison to Speak, the rapist, is not ust some boy she met at a party but someone she knows very well and who she thought could never do something like this.  The way that she is treated is probably what causes her to question everyone and everything about her decision to tell or not. She is afraid that if she tells anyone that the treatment will get worse or that it would happen to her too. She is also afraid of the way the community would start treating her differently also especially since if she tells, their “golden boy” would be going to jail.

 The story is good and compelling and keeps you on edge to figure out who the victim is and what will happen to Kayla once/if she decides to tell what she saw/ experienced. But it’s just too similar to Speak for me and it just takes too long for Kayla to decide.

Overall: 3.5 out of 5

Similar books:

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson  l  All The Rage by Courtney Summers

Other reviews:

YA Book Central  l  Dark Faerie Tales   l   Cuddlebuggery

Movie Review: Spectre (2015)

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In SPECTRE, a cryptic message from Bond’s past sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organization. While M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind SPECTRE.

CAST:

Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, David Bautista with Monica Bellucci and Ralph Fiennes as ‘M’

DIRECTED BY:

Sam Mendes  – Official Movie Site

Review: Now I know that it has been out for a little while now. I saw it on opening night but haven’t had the opportunity to review it yet so here it is. I was really excited to go see Spectre. I love action movies; some of my favorites are the Transporter series with Jason Statham and I love the other James Bond movies as well. The movie started off amazing. The opening scene was greatly done. The action was superb and I have to say that it was probably one of two of the biggest scenes of the movie.

All throughout the movie, Daniel Craig was great. The movie was mostly a story/plot that was pretty predictable. I was disappointed. You could tell right away who the bad guy/guys is/are after the opening scene almost because Bond looks at it basically. The interesting part of the movie was that it basically went through his life and also we find out who the love of his life is and Vesper apparently.

For me, as I stated previously, I was there for the action that I was expecting of a James Bond movie. It was not that interesting to me overall, however, for a person that really likes the James Bond movies and is not very intersted in action and more of a story/plot then this is perfect for you. It makes Bond more rounded as it build up his past/history. So built him into a more believeable character however some of the characteristics were not believable. The love story was pretty interesting. I have to say that the “Bond Girl” this time was super intereting and as I believe the bad guy says something to the effect of “this is the perfect girl for yoy, that could understand you.” And from what I understood of the movie, they all knew each other when they were younger.

Something that I was disappointed was that the gadgets… were almost nonexistent and also. The biggest was the car… and a watch. I think we (those who have seen the movie) can agree that this James Bond is an absolute alcoholic. Anytime he had a breakthrough, he had a drink in his hand. Something that was however amazing was the visuals. We see some amazing views of the Swiz Alps and… let me just say breath taking.

Overall: The movie was good, just not $10.50 worth of good. I would wait to see it at home when it comes out on Blu-Ray/DVD.

3.5/5 stars

Some more reviews: Rotten Tomatoes : Metacritic

Movie Review: The Duff

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The Duff is directed by Ari Sandel and is based on the novel by Kody Keplinger of the same title with the screenplay written by Josh A. Cagan. I reviewed it last week,(review can be found HERE). It stars Mae Whitman as Bianca and Robbie Amell as Wesley.

A high school senior instigates a social pecking order revolution after finding out that she has been labeled the DUFF – Designated Ugly Fat Friend – by her prettier, more popular counterparts. – IMDB

My opinion: This was funny, really funny. I really enjoyed it. I watched it when it was in the theaters and I just re-watched it again on DVD and it was still as funny as the first time. There are some differences from the book to the movie. One of which was the parents of Bianca, Bianca’s father is absent and she lives with her mother who is still a motivational speaker/self-help book author. Her friends are still pretty cool and she and Wesley live next door to each other, which is different.

Another difference is that they do not have sex all the time, as it is in the book. Another major difference is Bella Thorn’s character, Madison, she isn’t in the book, however, the role that she had was really nice and it added to the story a little more I feel like. It created an adversary like character to her protagonist.

There were so many funny moments. Mr. Arthur was hilarious, I loved him. I feel like he made the movie. I also really liked the shopping trip Bianca and Wes had. It started off Pretty Woman and then went from funny to funnier to hilarious.

The progression of the plot points was similar to that of the book and the movie was overall very good and funny.

4 out of 5

Review: City Love (City Love #1) by Susane Colasanti

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City Love by Susane Colasanti

Hardcover, 336 pages

Published April 21st 2015 by Katherine Tegen Books
Source: Publisher for honest review
Three girls are about to discover the meaning of city love. From bestselling YA romance author Susane Colasanti! Sadie, a born and raised New Yorker, is hopeful and romantic and an eternal optimist who is ready to find her soul mate.Darcy is a free spirit from SoCal with rebellious tendencies and unlimited financial resources, looking for summer boy adventures.Rosanna leaves Chicago for NYC with a grand total of seventy-three cents so she can reinvent herself and forget about her past.Sadie, Darcy, and Rosanna are living together in New York City the summer before their freshman year of college begins. With no parents, no rules, and an entire city to explore, these three girls are on the verge of the best summer of their lives. Told from alternating points of view, City Love captures the moments in each girl’s life when everything is thrilling, amazing, and terrifying all at once…in a way it will never be again. – Goodreads

My opinion: I don’t know why but it was so hard for me to get into this book. I did finish it, but it was torturous as times. I did like the three girls, Rosanna and Darcy and Sadie are different characters. They come from different socioeconomic status as well as different cities and they all like different things but they get along and work together. They also meet three different boys that are different but similar to them as well. For instance, Sadie meets Austin and they both like looking at buildings. The girls also develop a strong bond with each other as they talk about different activities they do together.

The reason I think that I didn’t enjoy the book as much is that although it was  good romance, I have been reading a lot of books that have a romantic feel to them and the romance progression was very obvious I feel like.

I was trying to figure out why I didn’t enjoy it and I remember I review that I read when the book first came out and I have to say I think Bri from Once Upon a Time put the words in my mouth or fingers as I am typing this. I think I wanted a strong friendship between the girls and not just the boys. That is what I think the book was missing. I think that if there were more moments of the girls bonding and spending time together, the book and I would have gotten along much better. There were times when they were bonding but that was mostly at the beginning of the book, however after about a quarter of the way of the book the focus is on the relationship with the boys and the rest of the mentions of the girls spending time together is from things they were thinking of things that happened in the past days.

Overall, I don’t really think that this was my “cup of tea” and it didn’t really meet my expectations but the story was okay.

2 out of 5


Other reviews of City Love

Review: The Duff: The Designated Ugly Fat Friend by Kody Keplinger

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The Duff: The Designated Ugly Fat Friend by Kody Keplinger

Hardcover, 280 pages
Published September 7th 2010 by Little Brown/Poppy (first published 2010)
Source: Library

Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “the Duff,” she throws her Coke in his face.

But things aren’t so great at home right now, and Bianca is desperate for a distraction. She ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him.

Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone. – Goodreads

My opinion: I laughed, I cried, I swore along with the Bianca. This book was so funny as times that I was laughing while at work from reading. I probably looked crazy. Wes was an interesting character, so well liked by everyone but in trouble. Bianca was sassy and a strong female character that I enjoy to read about. She is complex and her relationships with her friends and parents seem very interesting and complicated.

The relationship she has with her dad seems to be one that is very complex. At times, Bianca seems to be the adult. This can be seen especially when her dad finds out that her mother wants a divorce and he kind of loses his mind a little and becomes an alcoholic. Her relationship with her mom is also one that is almost none existent and she travels and doesn’t really communicate with Bianca. Based on the facts that her mom wasn’t really there for her and also that her dad isn’t that attentive, signifies that Bianca had to grow up quickly.

The group of friends she has seem to be a great support system for her that is until Wes mentions how she is their Duff and then she begins to question them a little and stops to talk to them as much as she used and they feel left out.

Her relationship with Wesley is also very sexual and it mostly begins to be like that because an ex of Bianca’s makes an appearance in town and she doesn’t want to deal with the way that the relationship ended and what happened during. The reason Wes agreed is because he is having problems with his parents not being present in his life and he is feeling lonely.

Overall this book has its ups and downs. I loved the way that characters interacted with each other and I also love the way that they came together. I also really liked the way that Bianca figured out what she wanted out of her relationships and she realized who was important in her life and how to balance those relationships (especially her parents).

4.5 out 5

I am planning on watching the movie once more to do a review of it and try to do a comparison to see what has changed from the book to the movie adaptation.

Giveaway + Review: The Night Sister by Jennifer McMahon (CLOSED)

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The Night Sister by Jennifer McMahon

Hardcover, 336 pages
Expected publication: August 4th 2015 by Doubleday
Source: Publisher for honest review
The latest novel from New York Times best-selling author Jennifer McMahon is an atmospheric, gripping, and suspenseful tale that probes the bond between sisters and the peril of keeping secrets.Once the thriving attraction of rural Vermont, the Tower Motel now stands in disrepair, alive only in the memories of Amy, Piper, and Piper’s kid sister, Margot. The three played there as girls until the day that their games uncovered something dark and twisted in the motel’s past, something that ruined their friendship forever.Now adult, Piper and Margot have tried to forget what they found that fateful summer, but their lives are upended when Piper receives a panicked midnight call from Margot, with news of a horrific crime for which Amy stands accused. Suddenly, Margot and Piper are forced to relive the time that they found the suitcase that once belonged to Silvie Slater, the aunt that Amy claimed had run away to Hollywood to live out her dream of becoming Hitchcock’s next blonde bombshell leading lady. As Margot and Piper investigate, a cleverly woven plot unfolds—revealing the story of Sylvie and Rose, two other sisters who lived at the motel during its 1950s heyday. Each believed the other to be something truly monstrous, but only one carries the secret that would haunt the generations to come. – Goodreads

My opinion: I have to say the way the book started was really interesting with the murder of Amy. As the story continues we see three different separate story lines occurring at the same time, Amy, Piper and Margot from the present and from the time of which they were teenagers. The other timeline is of Rose and Sylvie when they were teenagers and how the London Motel became so decrepit and how it fell apart in essence. There is a mention of a “monster” through out the book called a mare.

I love how Piper and Margot and Amy, in their teenage years, work through evidence that they discover to find out what happened to Sylvie, Amy’s aunt who disappeared one night after her 18th  birthday. I love the way that that investigation is brought forth when Piper comes back after Amy’s murder and she and Margot, begin their own investigation into Amy’s murder bringing in what they discovered during their investigation into Sylvie’s disappearance. It creates a very good tie into the what happened in the past and the present.

Some of the twists were obvious as is common in books, however the twists that are not expected are many, the biggest of which is who/what  killed Amy? Some of the things that I didn’t like in particular was that somethings weren’t cleared up for a stand alone, at least I felt they weren’t. One of which was Fenton’s disappearance and who was responsible. One person takes credit for it through another person, however, we don’t really know how it happened. It was a minor plot twist, but I wish I knew a little more about it.

Overall, the book was intriguing and I couldn’t put it down. It was a page-turner and kept me interested and guessing who/what the monster was and who/what was responsible for the murder of Amy as well as the disappearance of Sylvie.

4 out of 5 stars


Giveaway:

This giveaway is sponsored by DoubleDay. Ends on August 8th. Winner will be contacted on August 9th. US only.

GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED: WINNER IS GRACE Y.

Review: The One (The Selection #3) by Kiera Cass

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The One (The Selection #3) by Kiera Cass 

Hardcover, 323 pages
Published May 6th 2014 by HarperTeen
Source: The Library

The time has come for one winner to be crowned.

When she was chosen to compete in the Selection, America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown—or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the end of the competition approaches, and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose—and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants. – Goodreads

My Opinion:  This was interesting. It has been a while since I last read the first two books in the series and the progression of events in The One was I feel like sorta of how a relationship is supposed to progress however, there were some plot points that were a little extreme. The extremism is reasonable considering the danger the main characters are thought to be in.
What I found really interesting was that the although Prince Maxon isn’t aware of the relationship between America and one of the guards was that when he does find out he is so insecure about his whole relationship with her. Oh and don’t get me started on the King and his need to control every aspect of the people’s lives and that of the girls participating in the selection.
There were some plot twists that were kind of fun and unexpected and some that were not. but overall the book was okay. I think it wrapped up the character stories pretty well and the story itself ended as I thought and assumed it would.
Overall: 3 out of 5

Review: Under a Cruel Star: A Life in Prague 1941-1968 by Heda Margolius Kovaly

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Under a Cruel Star: A Life in Prague 1941-1968
Heda Margolius Kovaly
Paperback, 192 pages

Published January 5th 2012 by Granta Books

Source: Own copy

The story of a Czechoslovakian Jew, Heda Kovaly, who was sent to Auschwitz during World War II. She escaped the death camp and made her way back to Prague. But the horrors did not end with the war–her husband became a victim of the Stalinist purges. – Goodreads

My Opinion: This was really well written. I had to read this for a class but I enjoyed it so much that I thought you guys should check this out. Its about the author, Heda, and how she survived World War II. I have to say that the way this is written is very captivating and made me want to keep read the entire book in one sitting (which is basically what I ended up doing), but anyways, the author talks about the ways that she kept her family going basically and avoiding any extremely bad situations except for some experiences that are unavoidable, for lack of a better word.

I felt as though I got an actual experience for what life during WWII would have been like. The ways that Kovaly wrote the book, its so easy to feel what she felt during that time, the tension of your neighbors watching your every move… it’s intense.

I definitely recommend this to you history buffs and also to others that just want to experience some nonfiction that is a heavier topic but also so intriguing that you can not wait to finish and find out how it ends.

Overall: 5 out of 5