Saturday, December 29, 2012

Review: CROAK by Gina Damico

Fed up with her wild behavior, sixteen-year-old Lex's parents ship her off to upstate New York to live with her Uncle Mort for the summer, hoping that a few months of dirty farm work will whip her back into shape.

But Uncle Mort's true occupation is much dirtier than shoveling manure. He's a Grim Reaper. And he's going to teach Lex the family business.

She quickly assimilates into the peculiar world of Croak, a town populated by reapers who deliver souls from this life to the next. But Lex can't stop her desire for justice - or is it vengeance? - whenever she encounters a murder victim, craving to stop the attackers before they can strike again.

Will she ditch Croak and go rogue with her reaper skills?


Kick-butt girl? Check.

A major twist in said girl's life? Check. 

A very cute guy to add cuteness in this story? Check. 

Death and mystery? Check and check. 

Lexington has been acting up for two years. She's described as being a bully, but an equally fair bully. Fat, skinny, jock, nerd, handicapped or not, she punches anyone so you better watch out. Any little thing sets her off and she's learned the routine with the principal's office. Unlike all the trouble kid stories, she actually has a really loving family. Her parents care about her and her twin sister more than anything. Her best friend, and the only person who sticks up for her at school, is her twin sister Cordy. 

Finally, her parents have reached their point and send her off to her elusive Uncle Mort's. She's instantly done with the town of Croak when she arrives. No internet, no cell service, and she doesn't start with good terms with her uncle. Also, there's a Titanic poster in her room. 

But instead of milking cows and other farming duties she thought she would be forced to do, she learns she's a Killer. There's Killers and Cullers, both partners and both a necessity for the dead to reach their Afterlife.  Driggs is her partner and is the culler. AND they carry around personalized scythes! How cool is that? If I got a personalized scythe I would be like this. 

Lex has a hard time at first trying to understand that Grims help the dead. In the Afterlife, people like Edgar Allen Poe, Elvis, and Emily Dickens are having a peaceful, but fun time. 

We meet the Juniors, the majority of the Field workers. Although I liked them, I thought they could be way better. There wasn't much to connect with, even though some of their pasts were revealed. There was little connection for me, which was a disappointment since I felt I could truly love them. 

I also have three other problems with Croak:

1. Lex's mistakes annoyed me. Mistakes make a character. It's how they learn and how they grow. But with her, her mistakes made me want to roll my eyes. She's a blabbermouth, gullible (with certain people), and I couldn't really understand her for a portion of the book which then leads to #2.

2. I don't like bullies. I do love how tough Lex is. She isn't like normal heroines and doesn't take crap from anybody. However, I hate that there's no remorse afterwards for her bullying. I get being a Grim, it's your "destiny" and everyone acts out before they become a Grim. It's a part of the process. But since Lex sounds so mean, I want to go up to every person she's bullied and say sorry on her behalf and explain to them. It wasn't their fault she has low tolerance and likes to punch people. Of course, I have to give her credit for saying she's tried to stop...but still.

3. The Afterlife. I did foresee this one though. Please don't get me wrong. I knew this might have been the only way for this story to be written. The Afterlife was a major point. The Damning was too. But my beliefs, whatever you want to call them, conflicted with those so I struggled more than I thought I would. I wish I could voice my thoughts on this part better, but my brain is a mixed up, tired mess. 

So I'll go on. Driggs is lovable in my eyes, although the "mystery" concerning the picture was obvious to me from the first second it was introduced. There were a few good twists throughout the story, although again, I figured out who was behind it all from Day Numero Uno. 

The ending though? WOW. Just wow. I reread it a couple times, not believing my eyes. "What are you doing to me, Gina Damico? WHAT ARE YOU DOING?" I mentally screamed. I had quite a good chuckle though when my sister read it after me and gave me the deadpanned look of, "Why didn't you warn me?"

But thinking back, I knew it was the best choice. Just like other books (which I cannot name because it would ruin everything), some twists are crucial to a novel. To make things real, you sometimes have to break a few readers' hearts. 

Croak is filled with dark humor. Jokes are surrounded by death and instead of making it depressingly heavy, Ms. Damico turns it around by making it amusing and enjoyable. 

Although I had a few problems with this book, I really did love it. The pros were great in number and I cannot wait for the sequel. 


Brownie points for: Driggs, Uncle Mort, the twists, humor, and the lovely town of Croak 

Mushroom points for: un-connectable minor characters, "duh" moments, and bullying

Word to Parents: cursing, lots of death

**If any of you are slightly confused by "brownie points" and "mushroom points" that is my way of saying "added points" and "subtracted points." Brownies are delicious, mushrooms are not. No matter what my family says, mushrooms will always be mushy, disgusting, and I will only think of the fungi they are. 

What do you think of Croak?

Comment any thoughts below!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Wishlist Wednesday #7

Property of Pen to Paper

After having a WONDERFUL Christmas, I feel quite greedy for posting a Wishlist post right after this. I'm in such a grateful mood that I want nothing. However, this is a book that isn't published until 2013, so that doesn't mean I'm greedy...right? 

Being a 16-year-old safecracker and active-duty daughter of international spies has its moments, good and bad. Pros: Seeing the world one crime-solving adventure at a time. Having parents with super cool jobs. Cons: Never staying in one place long enough to have friends or a boyfriend. But for Maggie Silver, the biggest perk of all has been avoiding high school and the accompanying cliques, bad lunches, and frustratingly simple locker combinations. Then Maggie and her parents are sent to New York for her first solo assignment, and all of that changes. She'll need to attend a private school, avoid the temptation to hack the school's security system, and befriend one aggravatingly cute Jesse Oliver to gain the essential information she needs to crack the case . . . all while trying not to blow her cover.

Did you read that amazing-ness? Because I don't know how anybody can't be excited for this. She's a spy, going to New York (my dream home), going undercover, and it's all written by Robin Benway! 

I'm reading one of her novels right now: Audrey, Wait! thanks to the incredible Alice from Alice in Readerland. I'll post a review of it once I'm done, but her writing is great. So along with the mentioned things above, I really don't see how it can get any better. 

Also, I'd like to point out something: 

The cover.

You guys, just take a moment and look. It's not gorgeous or anything, but I adore it. It reminds me of another spy book (well, series) The Gallagher Girls by Ally Carter. The lower part of her outfit in this cover is so cute that I wouldn't be able to pull off, but my little sister could. Then there's all the different words in the background. Espionage. Mole. Spy. Sleuth. 


What are YOU wishing for this Wednesday? What do you think of Also Known As?

Monday, December 24, 2012

I Dreamed a Dreaaaam!

School reading always equals boredom to me. Dreading agony that I trudge along with and try to get out of as much as possible is what I associate school reading with. "Fun reading" would be books I pick out and can either toss if it's not for me or devour in a day's time if it's SO good, which hopefully it is. School reading is something I'm forced to stick with and is full of words I don't usually understand. To me, it's like trying to read the King James Bible. Don't get me wrong, I love the Bible. But King James version? It's full of thee's, thy's, and thou's and takes me so much longer to decipher than the "normal" version.

Why did I say all that? Well, folks, if you look to the picture above, you would know I'm about to rave about Les Miserables! Les Mis was a book that I picked out from a list to read for school. Unlike other school books, it actually grabbed my attention. My cousin though was first to read it. She called it the greatest love story and even named her child after one of the main characters. That's true fandom.

I read the book late last year and held off watching any of the movies because my mom didn't care for them and I wasn't about to taint my image of Les Mis. But this new movie? It's coming out Christmas Day and I have already declared repeatedly that I WILL be seeing it. Unfortunately, I won't be going out tonight for the midnight showing. Instead, after present-opening and lunch, I will be dragging my mother out to see it.
Me on Christmas Day

The trailer? Goosebump worthy. The actors? Fan girl is jumping up and down.

On our way to see The Hobbit, another school book I read last year that I was intrigued with, we passed by the poster I posted on the top of the page. Also, the poster which is posted on the left. Let's just say that when we passed by the huge poster, I made a spectacle out of myself.

But honestly, look at the posters. Gorgeous. I personally love the poster on the right. It shows all the characters and the flags being waved.

Two other posters that I love. 

The poster on this left isn't that whoop-dee-doo, except for the line on the top. The poster with Cossette (higher up left) has the same line, but not as noticeable. "Fight. Dream. Hope. Love." Everyone knows the saying "Live, Laugh, Love." I personally am tired of everyone saying it and making little tweaks with it. I have a feeling that "Fight. Dream. Hope. Love." might be on every status in America, but right now, it makes me feel empowered. I want to yell, "HUZZAH!" 

To conclude this jumbled mess devoted to Les Miserables, here is the trailer for you to drool over. 


Are you going to see Les Miserables

Merry Christmas Eve!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Cover Love #4

Property of Bookshelvers Anonymous

It’s 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer. She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street.

Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.

With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny.

**Since Blogger is messing up ONCE AGAIN, I have to do it in this format. Not terrible, but not what I'm used to.**

Anyways, I've been looking at this cover for the longest time, impatient to put it in Cover Love. When I first saw it, I thought, "COVER LOVE!"

First of all, I love the colors. Then of course, the bird cage. It definitely fits into the synopsis with her wanting to get out of New Orleans and her past. You can't look at the bird cage without looking at the girl behind the cage either, which I like. She's just looking at it, as if that's her only life...which it kind of is. 

And although it's not part of the cover, can I rave about how much I love the past? It's not too historical, only the 1950s, but I love that time period. I also just love history. Period. 

I didn't realize until now after reading the synopsis for the hundredth time that Ruta Sepetys wrote this book. Seriously, if it didn't have a gorgeous cover, I would have just shoved it into a Wishlist Wednesday post since I can't wait to read this book. But Ruta Sepetys? My sister, *ahem* the one who actually runs Cover Love, just finished reading her bestseller Between Shades of Gray, which she drooled over. The same book that I now am dying to read. WWII! 

I know I'm rambling, but this looks great and I can't help but start squealing over other books. 

Now, what cover do you love? 


Friday, December 14, 2012


Dying of a broken heart is just the beginning.... Welcome to forever. 

BRIE'S LIFE ENDS AT SIXTEEN: Her boyfriend tells her he doesn't love her, and the news breaks her heart—literally. 

But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping a secret about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost—and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there's Patrick, Brie's mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul . . . who just might hold the key to her forever after. 

With Patrick's help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she's ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces?

So I know I will probably be saying this a lot in the future and have said it a couple times already, but this is a book that is SO hard to review because of spoilers. I've been mulling it over for a couple days and it feels like spoilers are just cropping up everywhere! 

I had seen this book a few places and while I thought the title sounded melodramatic, I thought her dying of a broken heart just sounded...dumb. I already have to read about all these teenage girls whining about relationships on Facebook, did I really need it now becoming a cause of death in a book? Then there it was in the library and I picked it up against what I previously thought. 

The Verdict? It sucked me in and wouldn't let go. I loved the style of writing, the characters, and Brie. 

Brie (yes, like the cheese) has the perfect life. Her parents are together, she has a great relationship with her little brother, she has three amazing best friends, and a relationship with the boy she's loved for years. What could go wrong? *cue the suspenseful music* 

One night during dinner with her boyfriend, Brie hears the words no girl wants to hear from her boyfriend, "I don't love you." She feels a pain in her chest and dies that night. Everyone thinks it's from the heart murmur in her chest she's had since she was little. However, Brie knows it's from a broken heart. Even her cardiologist dad becomes obsessed with her case when all the medical professionals open her up and sees her heart literally in pieces. 

In her afterlife, the waiting place is her favorite pizza joint, Little Piece of Heaven. There she sees different kids and meets Patrick, an eighteen year old guy from the 80s with a bomber jacket and an intriguing scar. They instantly connect and have quirky and humorous conversations. 

He gives her a list that she has to go through for the grieving process: denial, anger, sadness, bargaining, acceptance. He tells her that she's way deep in the denial stage and takes her to see her family and friends back on earth. 

Her family is broken, her friends are grieving, and her boyfriend has a secret with her best friend. This, my friends, is the point in where I have to stop. 

From here, Brie makes some really dumb decisions. If you think about it, you can see why she would do it. If you were a ghost and could do some pretty wicked things, wouldn't you if you were in the anger stage? I sure would. I would be so mad that I couldn't speak to the people I loved, why wouldn't I take it out on the person who I thought caused it? 

I must say that I even became a little emotional wrought in the scene with her dog Hamloaf. I'm a sucker for sweet dog moments. Reminds me of in Air Bud when Josh yelled at Buddy to go away. Who DOESN'T hate that part? 

The revelations were usually hinted at before they actually happened so I already figured them out, but when they DID happen, I was still a little surprised. There's one thing for you to guess something and it's another when it really does happen. There was about two revelations that really did take me by surprise though. 

The ending is pretty twisted and I had to take a moment and think about it. Although her actions and complaining wore on my nerves, I really enjoyed the book. The surprises? I personally loved them. Brie's voice? Enjoyable. Patrick and his motorcycle? I want. I considered this whole book brilliant and charming. There have been quite a few books kind of like this, but this book is different. Unique.

And I liked it. 

Will YOU read it? Have you read a book like this before? What was it? 


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Wishlist Wednesday #6

Property of Pen to Paper!

It's...Wishlist Wednesday time! This is a meme where book bloggers, like myself, can share and squeal what they cannot wait for to be either released or received. It's hosted by the lovely Dani at Pen to Paper, so go check out hers and the list of others who are participating.

On to what I'm wishing for!

Things I know about Reece Malcolm:

1. She graduated from New York University.
2. She lives in or near Los Angeles.
3. Since her first novel was released, she’s been on the New York Times bestseller list every week.
4. She likes strong coffee and bourbon.
5. She’s my mother.

Devan knows very little about Reece Malcolm, until the day her father dies and she’s shipped off to live with the mother she’s never met. All she has is a list of notebook entries that doesn’t add up to much.

L.A. offers a whole new world to Devan—a performing arts school allows her to pursue her passion for show choir and musicals, a new circle of friends helps to draw her out of her shell, and an intriguing boy opens up possibilities for her first love.

But then the Reece Malcolm list gets a surprising new entry. Now that Devan is so close to having it all, can she handle the possibility of losing everything?

Publication date: February 5th, 2013 (by Entangled Teen)

I personally love stories like this, where they find long-lost family member and are forced to live with them. It's not exactly the same, but I think of Sarah Dessen's Lock and Key. I'm always interested to see how they get along and what feelings will be brought to the surface.

The only worry I have with this is that it will be centered too much on Devan's new life and not on the dynamic with her and her mother. I'm not saying I want it to be ONLY AND ALL about just them (because I am interested in her new life and with her love interest), but I don't want the parent to be ignored once again in a YA novel. I especially don't want her mother to be just passed over...considering this is partly about her.

What are you wishing for?

~~ Comments make me giddy, so feel free to comment away! ~~

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Regrets of Blogger Me

We all have regrets. It's human nature. But once I became a blogger, I found new regrets from my pre-blogging days. It's not as if I knew I would have a blog. How would I have known that? I was just reading, blog-stalking, and entering giveaways!

My one main regret is that I read so many books (GOOD books) and I don't remember too much about them. Oh, I remember if it was good or not. I remember the characters and a couple scenes. But enough to write a review? Nope. I guess I could go back and write a review for them, but I've already read them. My TBR is growing as we speak. So here are books (in no particular order) I've read that I wish I had been a blogger when reading:

1) The Opposite of Hallelujah by Anna Jarzab. This was a good book. I won it in a giveaway where I was sent a box full of ARCs. My naive self thought they were older books since I never heard of it. Oh, pre-blogger Sunny, why did you think that? I held it off and when I did finally read it, I devoured it up. I loved the relationships. I didn't like the cursing, but the pros outweighed the cons at least.

2) The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Everyone basically has read this book. At least, I hope they have. This is in my top all-time favorite series. I own the box set and have read every book in the series at the minimum of 7 times. I refuse to read the book again until the 2nd movie comes out though. It gives me more intense heartaches each time I read them.

3) Underworld by Meg Cabot. I LOVE Meg Cabot. She's so funny and creates such relatable characters. This book was the start of something new for me. I read it and thought the whole time, "An underworld? This is so different!" I understand now that it's not too different in some people's minds. But I really liked this book. I cannot wait until the 3rd.

4) The Gallagher Girl series by Ally Carter. I ADORE ALLY CARTER. You know how I just said I love Meg Cabot? Times that love by about ten and you won't even close to my love for Ally Carter. Seriously, I love her. I own this whole series and Heist Society. I've read these books multiple times and I still get shivers in the 5th book. I will probably bawl when the 6th comes out.

5) Little Women and Me by Lauren Baratz-Logsted. So, I remember the main character annoyed me a bit. But I also remember liking it. I know I was excited because while I haven't read the real book, I have watched the movie. Gosh, I love the movie. This is definitely a book I wouldn't be able to write a review from memory.

6) The Secrets of My Hollywood Life by Jen Calonita. I have a lot of favorite authors. Jen Calonita is also on that list. I have this horrible fascination with celebrities. I really don't know why and I don't think it's good either. I like to know what they do and all this background information in the Hollywood world. So reading this filled that appetite. I get to hear about secrets and read about a fictional celebrity who I connect with SO easily. The last book was also awesome because it's a parallel universe. Parallel universe = WIN.

7) While He Was Away by Karen Schreck. This and Little Women and Me would probably be considered the bottom of my liking pole. Really, I regret this book being in my pre-blogging days is because I see it EVERYWHERE. I do this blog for me, but I also like to be with the times. So I would've been able to give my thoughts on it more if I read it while I'm a blogger, instead of...not. All I really remember is the characters and the ending being frustrating.

There are probably WAY more. I mean, come on, I've been a pre-blogger my whole life and now I'm a blogger for a couple months. That's a lot of books I've read without writing a review for them. Maybe someday (soon or not) I'll go back and review the books I've mentioned or the other books I haven't. You just never know.

For bloggers: have you read a book in your pre-blogging days that you wish you would've read and reviewed now? What is it?

For everyone else: have you read the books I mentioned? What are some of your book-related regrets?

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Cover Love #3

Property of Bookshelvers Anonymous!
This is my third Cover Love. It's where bloggers can gab about covers they adore, love, are interested in, etc. So go to Bookshelvers Anonymous and check it out! You can also look at any other links there. Enjoy!  

Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else--two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren't they settling? Why isn't one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn't... 

For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she's still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable-hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet...for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything.

There are a couple reasons why I really like this cover. While there seems to be more and more covers showing only half of a girl's face, I like how they twisted it around on this cover. It's as if it's going to consume all of her and we just see a snapshot of it before it covers the whole page.

Her eyes tell a good story as well. They look watery as if she was crying. The expressions she has is stony, but sad and I like the coloring around her forehead. If you read the synopsis (come on, if you didn't, GO BACK), it's pretty obvious to emphasize "me." At the same time, I didn't notice it at first and when I did, I thought it was a nice touch.

I've had this on my wishlist for a while and this was supposed to be my first Cover Love, but other covers kept drawing my attention. However, personally, I thought this cover deserved some love as well.

Do you want to read What's Left of Me? What cover are you intrigued by? 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Review: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now. 

Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault. 

Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.

Wait! Before you disregard this because it is a "cancer book" and you are like my sister who doesn't like sad books, just STOP. Read the review then make up your mind. My goodness, this was a great book. I went from laughing to surprised to sad and the Ride of Emotions just went on forever. 

Hazel is an only child and has terminal cancer. She has thyroid cancer, lung tumors, and has an oxygen concentrator to help her breathe named Phillip. She knows she will never get better and will die before her parents. Her mother makes her go to a support group held in the Literal Heart of Jesus (it's in a church) where surviving cancer patient Patrick leads the group. The group is pretty depressing. Everyone always says their name and what cancer they have. Patrick prays for healing and has a super long list of the deceased from their group he says every meeting. 
Courtesy of Teen Lit Rocks and Simini Blocker

Her closest friend in the support group is Isaac. He already only has one eye and is slowly going completely blind. Through Isaac, she meets Augustus Waters. Augustus comes to the meeting for Isaac and the exchange between the two of them is pretty funny. He also can't stop staring at Hazel. After Hazel makes a speech regarding what Augustus says, he officially wants to get close to her. While Hazel thinks he's hot and is flattered (and taken aback) by his compliments and Augustus is curious about Hazel, I have insta-love for Augustus. 

On page 19 and 20, I felt exactly like Hazel. She sees him pull out a cigarette and blows up, "The whole thing where a boy who is not unattractive or unintelligent or seemingly in any way unacceptable stares at me and points out incorrect uses of literality and compares me to actresses and asks me to watch a movie at his house. But of course there is always a hamartia and yours is that oh, my God, even though you HAD FREAKING CANCER you give money to a company in exchange for the chance to acquire YET MORE CANCER. Oh, my God. Let me assure you that not being able to breathe? SUCKS. Totally disappointing. Totally."

In her speech/rant, I both laughed out loud and applauded which is hard to do on a treadmill. (Spoiler alert: he doesn't actually smoke. You shall see.) 

Augustus and Hazel become very fast friends. You can tell from the get go (and he doesn't want to even hide it) that Augustus has a super crush on Hazel. They bond over Augustus's favorite book and Hazel's favorite. Hazel's is a very important part to the whole story. An Imperial Affliction is by her favorite author and "third best friend" who she's never met, Peter Van Houten. AIA is about a girl Anna with cancer who has no hope that she will live. It is also a book that doesn't finish. Hazel has written Peter lots of times to figure out what happens to Anna's mother, the Dutchman, and her hamster. She knows what happens to Anna. Since AIA is written in first person and stops in the MIDDLE of a sentence (so cruel), Anna either is too sick to write anymore or dies. Like probably all the other readers, I googled this book in case it was actually real (Spoiler alert: it is not).

They begin to write Peter Van Houten's assistant and then Peter himself. Happily for them, Peter even offers a invitation to visit him if they are ever in Amsterdam. Well, of course, Hazel and Augustus try to think of any way to get there. Like the Make A Wish Foundation, the Wish factory grant wishes to dying kids. Since Hazel uses her for the cliche Disneyland wish, Augustus makes his wish to let Hazel and himself travel to Amsterdam to meet Peter. 

"I bet you say that to all the boys who finance your international travel," he answered. 

We then learn Augustus had a previous girlfriend who died from cancer and Hazel immediately wants to not get close to him. She doesn't want to be a "grenade" to him because she knows she will die. I realized just now that I haven't been clear and I apologize for it. You see, Augustus also has cancer but his cancer has 80% survival rate. He has been declared cancer-free for a while, but lost a leg. So Hazel doesn't want him to live and be hurt again by having a girlfriend die and she makes that clear to him. 

In the night, Hazel wakes up in the middle of the night with an "apocalyptic pain" in the center of her head. She's rushed to the hospital. Fortunately for her, there are no new tumors but only that her lungs were filled with liquid and she had lack of oxygen. That whole time, Augustus had been in the waiting room for her. (so sweet!) 

After overcoming complications with the trip, they (Gus, Hazel, and Hazel's mom) reach Amsterdam. They're in a huge surprise when they meet Peter Van Houten. Although Peter might have been a big part of Amsterdam, it wasn't the biggest surprise. Unfortunately, I can't say what because that would be a spoiler. Stupid spoilers. 

Courtesy of The Book Smugglers
Gosh. I really, really liked this book. In the first 38 pages, I was laughing out loud. Not a lot of books make me do that. Yes, since it's a "cancer book" it is sad in parts, but it was humorous as well. Hazel and Augustus were my favorites, of course. I love Isaac, their blind friend. Green even made her parents great. In most YA books, parents are either the bad guys or just pushed aside. But Green gives them personality and special moments and makes them very good characters. 

Mostly, I loved Hazel and Gus's relationship. LOVED. I wanted an Augustus. When I read the inside flap to see what it was about, I wasn't a big fan of his name. At the end of the book, I wanted to name everything in sight after that boy. All of the characters were completely witty. At some points, I kept asking myself, "Are these really teenagers?" because they were just wonderfully amazing. 

Don't be afraid of reading it because it might be a sad book! YOU WILL BE MISSING OUT. 

Absolute favorite quote that made me literally LOL: 
I didn't tell him that the diagnosis came three months after I got my first period. Like: Congratulations! You're a woman. Now die. 

Other favorite quotes: 
"I strongly suspect you wrote it in the book." 
He broke out into that goofy smile. "And you say we don't know each other." 

"As I recall, you promised to CALL when you finished the book, not text." 

"But we both know that okay is a very flirty word. Okay is BURSTING with sensuality." 

"Just so you know, I'm right here," Mom said. "Sitting next to you. Your mother. Who held your hand as you took your first infantile steps." 
"It's friendly," I reminded her, turning to kiss her on the cheek. 
"Didn't feel too friendly," Gus mumbled just loud enough for me to hear.

"I'm in love with you and I'm not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I'm in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we're all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we'll ever have, and I am in love with you." 

"Oh, I wouldn't mind, Hazel Grace. It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you."

"With each passing minute, I'm developing a deeper appreciation of the word mortified."

"You used," he said, and then took a sharp breath, "to call me Augustus." 

Think you won't die is yet another side effect of dying. 

Courtesy of and Tessa Max 
There are so many GREAT quotes. Other reviewers might have put the longer quotes in and put less quotes, but I personally love the short ones. Also, I can put more quotes in that way. After reading those quotes, don't you now want to now go read the book? So go and read! 

I would also like to say thank you to Mr. John Green for writing this fantastic book. *searches library system for more John Green books* 

Word to Parents: language, a mention of having sex but no details, cancer, death 

Will you read The Fault in Our Stars? Do you cry in books? 

COMMENT below! 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

My confessions

Oh, every blogger has some confessions. I have seen several posts from several different bloggers who have revealed them whether it be in a Top Ten Tuesday post or just a post like this one. I thought it would be fun to join in on the confessions! Hello, who doesn't like them (think: sleepovers) and it involves a list. 

Lists = greatness which I thank my mother for. 


1. I am 16 years old.I'm still a junior in high school, but I AM in college at the same time. Might be a bit confusing, I know. However, I dual enroll in a college nearby while I still do high school work. I have heard of high school bloggers, but usually, they are seniors in high school. So if any of you are high school junior bloggers, give me a shout-out! (I also hope adult/older bloggers on here do not now regard me as "too young." Please still like me!) 

Mother/daughter reading duo! 
2. Adult books have a place in my heart.It sounds shocking since this is a YA blog, but I was first introduced to reading through adult books. Well, at least that's how I remember it. I was always very picky about my reading and the only books I actually remember (right now) only really liking were the Christy Miller series, the Mandy series, and the Elizabeth Gail series. The other books were my mom's. The Hawk and the Jewel (and the rest of the Kensington Chronicles) by Lori Wick will ALWAYS have a place in my heart. It, along with other Lori Wick books and books in my mom's closet (even Amish!), are my go-to read when I want to reread something. You know how when you pack for a vacation, you will bring new books, but always have at least one book for "safety?" What if you don't like the new books? What if you're not in the mood for them? The books my mother introduced me to are definitely my safety books. (Seven Daughters and Seven Sons is the book my sister introduced me to that got me to start liking her books a bit more) 

3. I haven't read Harry Potter.I know I really should considering the characters and books pop up in every Top Ten Tuesday post! To be honest, it never really interested me and my mom wasn't big into me reading witchcraft of any sort (Narnia does not count). Now that I'm a blogger, I really want to know the appeal. Hermoine sounds awesome and it helps that I can picture Emma Watson. Also, I have to confess that I have not read Twilight either. I will NEVER read that. I'm sorry to you all Twi-hards. 

4. I am a Les Miserables fan.It might not be a whoop-dee-doo to you all, but it IS to me. I read it for school last year and it was one of the most interesting school books I ever read. Sure, I had check cliff notes some and there was a bit of skimming, BUT it was interesting. Goosebumps pop up whenever I watch the Les Mis trailer to no fail

5. Mr. Darcy = love.Yes, there are LOTS of fictional guys that I absolutely adore and wish I had. Peeta, Michael, Perry, Roar...I can go on. You can actually see my list of Top Ten Fictional Crushes if you click on the link. Hint, hint. But Mr. Darcy is so swoon-tastic. However, I didn't list him in my Top Ten because I don't remember much of what I thought of him in the book. I had to read Pride and Prejudice for school in, I think, middle school? Was not impressed. I am, though, in love with the 2005 movie version. All the girls in my family can re-watch it and keep re-watching it without it ever getting old. 

6. Blogger friends are awesome.A perk of being in the blogosphere is the friends! Sure, we never meet (some do) and they don't even know my REAL name, but they are a great bunch of people. We get to squeal over books, encourage each other, comment on posts, and support! I'm new to blogging, but I have already "met" some awesome people. I thought my sister was crazy when she said she had friends on here, but (don't tell her) SHE WAS RIGHT. 

7. My dream is to travel.My first priority is New York. NY is the one place I have been strongly dreaming about for my whole stinking life. After that, I fully intend to study abroad for a semester in Europe and then travel in Africa. I hope to see Boston someday and even take my little sister to Hong Kong (I have no idea why that's her dream place, but it is). Russia is even a fascination with me since I have always loved Anastasia. So traveling is my biggest dream. They also have some very cool book covers overseas. 

8. My Christmas list is a big thing to me.I can tell a lot of how I like the book by asking myself if I would put it on my Christmas list. My Christmas list is very special to me. I don't ask for just anything. Well, I might sometimes just to beef it up, but usually I think really hard on what I want. Do I really want to own that book? Will I EVER read that again? It was good, but worth rereading? My Christmas List is basically a guideline for how I liked a book I read. 

9. I have so many book ideas.I have tried to write them, but I can't seem to do it. Writing summaries or certain scenes or even what the characters are like are more fun to me. Maybe someday I'll write a book, but I would really rather give someone else the idea. 

Property of
Makes me smile every time I read it.
10. I mispronounce. A lot.You know, as a blogger and a slightly intellectual person, you would think I would not have a problem with things like mispronunciation. I guess that's the problem with reading. You see it, but they don't pronounce it for you. Genre, meme, Amish...there are so many others that I have problems with. I FINALLY got Amish down, but I keep forgetting the former two. 


Alright, the list is pretty tame. No shocking revelations, pregnancies, or soap opera situations. There aren't even really weird bookish confessions. These are just MY confessions, MY quirks, and MY feelings. Some people might have the same confessions, some people might think they are stupid, or some people might think differently. 

It does feel good to declare it all to the world. I recommend it. And you all know ten more things about me instead of just a pseudonym. 


11. I am Downton Abbey-obsessed.I will be happy to converse/squeal/rant/WHATEVER with you about books, but also Downton Abbey. Oh my gosh, love that show. (It got renewed for a 4th season!) 


What are YOUR confessions? Do you have some of the same? 

COMMENT below! 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wishlist Wednesday #5

Property of Pen to Paper

This is a meme hosted by Dani from Pen to Paper where each blog that signs up will post about a book they want to read/cannot wait for to come out. It can be an old or a new one. Basically, it's where on a Wednesday, we will talk about an item on our Wishlist that we hope to own or read in the near future. Click here to see everyone else's beautiful Wishlist Wednesday's! 

(Picture from Goodreads is messing up, sorry!) 

She’s been six different people in six different places: Madeline in Ohio, Isabelle in Missouri, Olivia in Kentucky . . . But now that she’s been transplanted to rural Louisiana, she has decided that this fake identity will be her last.

Witness Protection has taken nearly everything from her. But for now, they’ve given her a new name, Megan Rose Jones, and a horrible hair color. For the past eight months, Meg has begged her father to answer one question: What on earth did he do – or see – that landed them in this god-awful mess? Meg has just about had it with all the Suits’ rules — and her dad’s silence. If he won’t help, it’s time she got some answers for herself.

But Meg isn’t counting on Ethan Landry, an adorable Louisiana farm boy who’s too smart for his own good. He knows Meg is hiding something big. And it just might get both of them killed. As they embark on a perilous journey to free her family once and for all, Meg discovers that there’s only one rule that really matters — survival.

Thanks to another blog (unfortunately, I cannot remember who), I saw this wonderful book! Goodness, there are a couple things that get me excited in the description. 

For starters, I love the name Meg. Might sound stupid, but Meg is just a really good name and I like it better than the full "Megan." I think part of it is because I really like a book who's main character is named Meg and the other part is that I absolutely adore Meg Ryan. You've Got Mail? Timeless. 


Also, it is about witness protection program! I already like the whole "girl moves a lot and gets a new identity" story. That story is what made me most excited for Sarah Dessen's What Happened to Goodbye. However, this time, the girl HAS to get a new identity. I want to know what her real name is, what her father did, and of course, I want to know what her love interest, Ethan, is like. 

"...there's only one rule that matters -- survival." <--that line in the description above gets me really, really giddy. 

I hope to get this soon and thank you to whoever posted about this! 

--By the way, sorry about the pictures. I see that it is Blogger's fault and not Goodreads. Only letting me do it this way. Blah. 

What can you NOT wait for?