A Love Story Told By Love (IT WAS ADORABLE) // REVIEW: The Romantics by Leah Konen

Title: The Romantics
Author: Leah Konen
Publication Date: October 17th 2017
Publisher: Harry N Abrams (Amulet Books)
Part of a Series?: No, A Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: Abrams & Chronicle Books Ltd (THANK YOU!)
Buy Links: Amazon US || Amazon UK || Barnes and Noble || The Book Depository || Wordery || Foyles || Waterstones || WHSmith || Kobo || Books A Million || Chapters Indigo || Google Books
Blurb Description: Perfect for fans of Lauren Myracle and Rainbow Rowell, The Romantics will charm readers of all ages. Gael Brennan is about to have his heart broken when his first big relationship crumbles on the heels of his parents’ painful separation. Love intervenes with the intention of setting things right—but she doesn’t anticipate the intrusion of her dreaded nemesis: the Rebound. Love’s plans for Gael are sidetracked by Cara, Gael’s hot sauce–wielding “dream girl.” And the more Love meddles, the further Gael drifts from the one girl who can help him mend his heart. Soon, Love starts breaking all her own rules—and in order to set Gael’s fate back on course, she has to make some tough decisions about what it means to truly care.
THIS BOOK IS ADORABLE.

And by ADORABLE I mean that it had me laughing at the funny moments (there was a scavenger hunt in a zoo), cringing at the awkward parts as we all tend to do in a romantic comedy and going “aww” (a word I almost NEVER use) when everything was cute and fluffy.

The one liner on the cover sold me on reading this book – ‘A rom-com about love. Told by Love’ – and I loved every second of it.

Let’s break it down:

WRITING:

One of my favourite parts about this book was that it was ACTUALLY told from Love’s perspective, but we got to saw Gael’s thoughts with commentary from Love on what he was thinking. It was ADORABLE, with all these sidenotes about the different types of people who fall in love including Dreamers, Loyalists, Serial Monogamists, Romantics and Cynics, and it was such fun to read that I honestly didn’t want the book to end.

PLOT:

Just like your typical romantic comedy, this book is about a Grade A Romantic who gets cheated on his girlfriend and his best friend and is then on the search to find The One, and all this mishaps that happen along the way. 

The fact that Love was narrating this book made this SO MUCH MORE FUN because you constantly got to see the small things that Love did to set Gael on the right path including small signs, rain (because when do rom-coms NOT have a scene in the pouring rain) and even THE AIRPORT SCENE.

CHARACTERS:

One of my other favourite parts about this book was HOW MUCH it concentrated on family. As Gael’s got cheated on and dumped, his parents were also separating. There was a lot of anger and lashing out, but I LOVED THAT parental control and influence were such a big part of the story. More than ANYTHING, I loved Gael’s baby sister, Piper with her Scavenger hunt skills, French phrases and the optimism only an eight year old can have.

I also loved Mason, Gael’s best friend despite what he did. He is one of the ONLY fictional best friends I’ve found it in me to forgive for cheating because this guy was ADORABLE in his own right and strangely loyal.


I loved Sammy Sutton, Cara and all the other characters in this book too but MOST OF ALL, I LOVED LOVE. The narration and mishaps were what brought this book to life and made it one I will definitely remember.

CONCLUSION:

One of the most hilarious and adorable love stories I’ve read in a while – told by Love itself!


If you’re looking for a read that will have you laughing and rooting for everyone involved, PICK UP The Romantics. 4.5 stars. 
Leah Konen

Leah Konen grew up in a two-stoplight farming town in Washington State before moving to suburban North Carolina, where there were many more stoplights and lots of sweet tea. After studying journalism at the University of North Carolina, she headed to New York City to pursue her dream of becoming a writer. When she’s not working on novels and articles or writing for fashion brands, she enjoys devouring new books, spoiling her dog, Farley, biking around Brooklyn, checking out live music, and binge-watching TV. 

Find her online at www.leahkonen.com.
What are some of the cutest contemporary novel that you've read?
Have you had the chance to read The Romantics? What did you think of it?
Have you read another book that is told from Love's perspective?
I can't wait to hear from you!
 

Dark And Twisty // REVIEW: The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

Title: The Midnight Star (The Young Elites #3)
Author: Marie Lu
Publication Date: October 13th 2016 
Publisher: Penguin Books UK
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 3 on 3 of the Young Elites Trilogy
I Got A Copy Through: Penguin India (THANK YOU!)
Buy Links: Amazon IN || Amazon US || Amazon UK || Barnes and Noble || The Book Depository || Wordery || Flipkart || Infibeam || Foyles || Waterstones || WHSmith || Books A Million || Chapters Indigo ||
Blurb Description: The thrilling finale to the New York Times bestselling Young Elites series from Marie Lu.
There was once a time when darkness shrouded the world, and the darkness had a queen.
Adelina Amouteru is done suffering. She's turned her back on those who have betrayed her and achieved the ultimate revenge: victory. Her reign as the White Wolf has been a triumphant one, but the darkness within her has begun to spiral out of control, threatening to destroy everything.
When a new danger appears, Adelina must join the Daggers on a perilous quest in order to save herself and preserve her empire. But this uneasy alliance may prove to be the real danger . . .
For the longest time, I’ve been staring at the Young Elites trilogy sitting on my TBR pile and hoping that someday, I would find the time to read this series that sounded absolutely brilliant. So, when my semester closed this Tuesday, I thought what better time than NOW to do so?

Within a span of four days, I read the whole Young Elites trilogy and I HAVE THOUGHTS. SO SO MANY THOUGHTS.

In brief, though, let me explain what I thought of the first two books in this series:

The Young Elites: I LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT IT

The Rose Society: THIS WAS SO MEDIOCRE, AND REPETITIVE, except for the last 70 pages which was action packed but when I reached the end of this book, I couldn’t help wishing it was more.

And so, after the two days it took me to read both these books, I was unsure if The Midnight Star was the book I wanted to dive into JUST then. I took a break for a day, and then decided why NOT binge this series altogether?

Which brings me to nowThe Midnight Star was a perfect ending to a series I liked, but didn’t love all because of the middle part.

MY THOUGHTS:

1.       For the longest time in The Midnight Star, I struggled to cope with the kind of ruler that our main character, Adelina was. She was queen, sure, but she was a horrible queen. She had no care for her citizens, had horrible policies and was basically a vengeful conquer and not a ruler at all.

   2.       The main reason for Adelina being such a horrible ruler was because of the voices in her head, driving her to kill and conquer, and it’s also the reason I didn’t like The Rose Society – because voices in her head made her do everything wrong. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE ‘BAD’ CHARACTERS or anti-heroes, but through the entire series, there was a “NORMAL” part of Adelina and then there was the “voices and the darkness” which totally RUINED the part where this book’s protagonist is NOT AN EVIL PERSON, BUT SOMEONE TORTURED BY UNRELENTING VOICES.

Image result for the midnight star   3.       Which is why I called The Midnight Star the PERFECT ending to this series – it was when the voices lose the extent of their control and the real Adelina comes back, flaws and all. I preferred the flawed, angry girl so much more than the slave to the voices in her head girl and her character growth was astounding.

   4.       Another thing I loved about The Midnight Star was the sense of camaraderie that came across all the main characters – Raffele, Teren, Adelina, Magiano, Maeve, Lucent, Voiletta and everyone else. I was HAPPY to see that they were all working together, towards a common goal.

   5.       Like I mentioned, when the series mostly focused on the “voices” and the “darkness” and what they made Adelina do, it got BORING AND REPETITIVE. FAST. And yet, The Midnight Star had a totally different plot. It was about a greater goal, and power and mythology and it was just BRILLIANT executed.

Image result for the midnight starIf there’s one thing I learnt from bingeing The Young Elites Trilogy, it’s that maybe bingeing something isn’t always for the best. I feel like the fact that I read them all together and so fast might have caused things to be repetitive, and for me to get slightly bored with the world.

At the same time, I was happy that I could read it altogether without any breaks or time to survive the revelations and cliff-hangers.

Yes, I’m a confusing person.

Would I recommend this series? Definitely.

Would I recommend BINGEING this series? Probably not. It’s best to take a break between books (preferably with another book)


A dark, twisty young adult series that COULD HAVE been better.
Marie LuMarie Lu is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling series The Young Elites, as well as the blockbuster bestselling Legend series. She graduated from the University of Southern California and jumped into the video game industry as an artist. Now a full-time writer, she spends her spare time reading, drawing, playing games, and getting stuck in traffic. She lives in Los Angeles with one husband, one Chihuahua mix, and one Pembroke Welsh corgi.
Have you read any Marie Lu Books?
Do you prefer the Prodigy series, the Young Elites series of Warcross? 
How excited are you for Batman: Nightwalker and for the rest of the DC series? 
What are some of your favourite books with anti-heroines? I'd love to hear from all of you.
 

Interview with Erin Summerill, Author of Ever The Brave

Hi Everyone!

I've been bombarding you with reviews lately and I thought it's time we do something different.

I had the opportunity to interview the ABSOLUTELY lovely Erin Summerill, which was organised by her lovely publishers, HMH Teen. Her debut series, a duology (Clash Of Kingdoms), with the two books titled Ever The Hunted and Ever The Brave and the both of them are a) GORGEOUS and b) I can't WAIT to read them. Scroll down and see the lovely interview that I did with Erin and I hope you love it!
1. If you could teleport into any place (real or fictional) where would you first go? 

Ah! I want to go to so many places. I want to go to Alaska and see the northern lights. I want to go to Rome and see the Vatican. I want to explore Machu Picchu. I want to see the Serengeti at sunset. I want to go on a castle tour in Germany and France! 

I have to stop, because I could go on forever. 

But if I had to pick one to go to first, I would want to go back to Hawaii, and spend time with my grandmother again. 


2. Which five fictional characters would you take with you on a heist? 

I would take: Darrow, from Red Rising - he's the perfect lead. Gen from The Theif - he is the trickster. Katsa from Graceling - she survives everything! Rhysand from A Court of Mist and Fury because he's just perfect. And Britta from Ever The Hunted, because she's clever and soft-footed.  


3. What are some of your favourite 2017 book covers? 

preorder.jpg
Learn about the Pre-Order Campaign for Ever The Brave here
Without sounding glib or like a braggart, I love EVER THE BRAVE's cover. It is my most favorite cover ever and all the credit goes to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and the artist, Martin Schmetzer. 
But I really love The Wish Granter by CJ Redwine. That cover is so striking and unique to me. 


And now, moving onto your masterpiece: 


4. For those readers who haven't read wither Ever The Brave or Ever The Hunted yet, could you tell them a little about what the series is about? 

It's about a girl, Britta, who must track down her father's killer before the killer gets her. The problem is, the accused is the one boy she loves, Cohen. 

These books are an adventure and mystery and romance rolled into one! 


5. If you could give one piece of advice to your main characters, what would it be? 

Be vulnerable and open yourself to new ideas and relationships.


6. Are you a plotter of a pantser or somewhere in between? How did writing books one and two differ from each other? 

I'm somewhere in the middle. I know the main points of the story before I begin (the start, the middle, the end, and the source of conflict). Then I start writing and often try to write through scenes without a plan.


7. What were your first thoughts when you saw the cover for Ever The Hunted? What was the design process like? 

OH my! I cried. I saw how beautiful the font and design was and tears dripped down my cheeks because I was so happy. Authors often have little say in what their covers look like, so when I saw mine I felt like I had won the cover lottery!
Title: Ever The Brave (Clash Of Kingdoms #2)
Author: Erin Summerill
Publication Date: December 5th 2017
Publisher: HMH Books For Young Readers
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 2 on 2 of the Clash Of Kingdoms Series
Buy Links: Amazon US || Barnes and Noble || The Book Depository || Wordery ||
Blurb Description: Ever the Divided. Ever the Feared. Ever the Brave.After saving King Aodren with her newfound Channeler powers, Britta only wants to live a peaceful life in her childhood home. Unfortunately, saving the King has created a tether between them she cannot sever, no matter how much she'd like to, and now he's insisting on making her a noble lady. And there are those who want to use Britta’s power for evil designs. If Britta cannot find a way to harness her new magical ability, her life—as well as her country—may be lost.
The stakes are higher than ever in the sequel to Ever the Hunted, as Britta struggles to protect her kingdom and her heart. 
Erin SummerillErin Summerill was born in England. After spending years bouncing between Air Force bases in Hawaii, England, and California, her family settled in Utah, where Erin graduated with a B.A. in English from Brigham Young University. She had aspirations to write the next great American novel, but writing proved tougher than she first thought. So she grabbed a Nikon and became a professional photographer while crafting manuscript after manuscript. The scenic detour of shooting weddings across the United States, as well as internationally, provided world-building inspiration. It gave her the vision to draft her debut YA fantasy, EVER THE HUNTED. Now when she isn’t writing, or shooting a wedding, she’s chasing her four kids, two dogs, one cat, and five chickens. This could be why she downs massive amounts of Coke Zero and Hot tamales.

You can follower her on twitter: @erinsummerill

 Have you had the chance to read the Clash of Kingdoms series yet?
What do you think of it?
I can't wait for hear from you.
Also, don't forget to say hi to Erin in the comments. I'm sure she'd love to hear from you.

Five Reasons Why You NEED Dive Into Jason Segel and Kristen Miller's Otherworld

When I got the email that I would be receiving a special package containing a hot off the presses hardback of one of my MOST anticipated releases of the year, I might have happy danced around the place.

Do bookdragons happy dance? I think we can, when it comes to bookish news and then spew fire on everything else? And also devour all books. Yup, that is the life.

Anyway, over the weekend I FINALLY found the time to dive i nto Jason Segel and Kristen Miller's BRILLIANT YA novel, Otherworld and I fell in love with everything it had to offer. So, instead of doing a simple review, I decided to do a post talking about the Five Reasons Why You NEED Dive Into Otherworld:

~*~*~*~*

In Short: This book was BRILLIANT – filled with a plot structure that kept evolving, brave and lifelike characters and a virtual reality game that was more real than virtual. It was fast paced, filled with twists and a changing environment and unlike anything I’ve ever read
.
There are so many reasons why you should already be holding Otherworld in your arms, including:

1.       SIMON EATON:

Within the first few chapters, I was ALREADY in love with Simon Eaton, the protagonist. He was reckless and ruthless in this world and Otherworld and unflinchingly loyal to the girl he loved. I loved his courage, his ability to brave any situation but most of all, his readiness to go to the ends of this Earth and a virtual reality for a girl he loved. He was a BRILLIANT character, deep and I loved every second of his three hundred plus page narration.

2.       OTHERWORLD:

This world- the virtual reality people could step into was a whole other level of insane. I thought this book would be about an unreal life in a very believable video game made to satisfy your every desire BUT IT WASN’T. Otherworld was about how a virtual reality game took a life of its own, a conspiracy, survival, love, loyalty, secrets and human nature and so different from anything I’ve ever read before.

3.       THE EVOLVING PLOT STRUCTURE:

The plot of Otherworld is something I marvelled. It was a little confusing at first when Simon put on a disk and entered the game instead of a headset, with the Children and the realms but that was one of the biggest mysteries and best parts of this BRILLIANT BOOK. We move from the real world to Otherworld and inside Otherworld itself, we switch between realms that people virtually settle in to indulge in their desires and I LOVED IT ALL. I loved the conspiracy, the characters, the pace – EVERYTHING.

4.       THE PACE AND THE DIMENSIONS:

Otherworld was FAST paced. There was never a dull moment, and the story kept moving and moving until we reached the end. Otherworld itself was filled with so many different dimensions – ones that revolved around rage, desire, greed and others, ruled by Elementals and it was BRILLIANT. The pace is also unrelenting and it just keeps going and I loved it.

5.       KAT, BUSARA, CAROLE, GOROG AND EVERYONE ELSE:

As much as I LOVED Simon, I also loved all of the other secondary characters especially Kat. They were fully rounded and flawed characters with their own desires that hit you in the face as you read through the book. I loved Busara and I’m very excited to see where the next book takes us with her.


Otherworld is a high stakes BRILLIANT fast paced novel centred around a more real than virtual virtual reality game that will keep you on the edge of your seat and you will love every minute of it. 4.5 stars.  
Title: Otherworld (Otherworld #1)
Authors: Jason Segel and Kristen Miller
Publication Date: October 31st 2017
Publisher: Rock The Boat UK (Oneworld Publications)
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 1 on 2 of the Otherworld Duology
I Got A Copy Through: Rock The Boat (THANK YOU!)
Buy Links: Amazon IN || Amazon US || Amazon UK || Barnes and Noble || The Book Depository || Wordery || Foyles || Waterstones || WHSmith || Books A Million || Chapters Indigo || 
Blurb Description: The Company Welcomes you ToOTHERWORLDThe new generation of gaming.
Welcome to real life 2.0.Are you ready to play?
There are no screens. There are no controls. You don’t just see and hear it—you taste, smell, and touch it too.In this new reality there are no rules to follow, no laws to break.You can indulge your every desire.Why would you ever want to leave?Step into Otherworld. Leave your body behind.
Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller have created a brilliant and terrifying view of a possible future that’s not far away. OTHERWORLD asks the question we’ll all soon be asking: if technology can deliver everything we want, how much are we willing to pay?
Jason Segel
Kirsten MillerJason Segel is an actor, a writer, and an author. Segel wrote and starred in Forgetting Sarah Marshall and co-wrote Disney’s The Muppets, which won an Academy Award for Best Original Song. On television, Segel starred on How I Met Your Mother and Freaks and Geeks. He is the co-author of the New York Times bestselling series Nightmares!  Otherworld is his first novel for young adults.
Kirsten Miller is the author of the acclaimed Kiki Strike books, the New York Times bestseller The Eternal Ones, and How to Lead a Life of CrimeOtherworld is the fifth novel Kirsten has written with Jason Segel.  kirstenmillerbooks.com
What are some of your favourite futuristic books? 
What do you think about Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality?
Are you a gamer? What are some of your favourite games?
If you've read Otherworld or have any recommendations like it for me, I'd love to hear what you think!

It's Intense (AND THE HYPE IS REAL) // REVIEW: Turtles All The Way Down by John Green

Title: Turtles All The Way Down
Author: John Green
Publication Date: October 10th 2017
Publisher: Penguin Books
Part of a Series?: No, A Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: Vivek Tejuja and Penguin India (THANK YOU!)
Buy Links: Amazon IN || Amazon US || Amazon UK || The Book Depository || Wordery || Flipkart || Snapdeal || Infibeam || Foyles || Waterstones || WHSmith || Kobo || Books A Million || Chapters Indigo || Google Books
Blurb Description: It’s quite rare to find someone who sees the same world you see.
Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.   Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.  In his long-awaited return, John Green, the acclaimed, award-winning author of Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars, shares Aza’s story with shattering, unflinching clarity in this brilliant novel of love, resilience, and the power of lifelong friendship.
“The way he talked about thoughts was the way I experienced them – not as a choice but a destiny. Not a catalogue of my consciousness, but a refutation of it.”

When you flip open a new book by an author you’ve read multiple books from before, it’s only natural to compare the books and figure out where this new one stands on your list.

Which I think was a mistake because Turtles All The Way Down is unlike anything I’ve ever read before and when you do read it, you’ll fully understand what I’m talking about.

Turtles All The Way Down was ABSOLUTELY EXCEPTIONAL and INTENSE and reading it was a journey that everyone should take. Turtles All The Way Down was a harrowing depiction of life from a teenager who suffers from mental illness and it was astoundingly well done.

MY THOUGHTS:

1.       I have missed John Green’s writing. Nobody else writes like him, with shrewd observations, quirk, sass and dialogue that will make you think. It’s been forever since I experienced his writing, but waiting all these years for Turtles All The Way Down was worth it. I’ve never seen mental illness represented better.
 Image result for turtles all the way down
2.       AZA WAS A BRILLIANT CHARACTER. I LOVE her name and the story behind it but I loved the girl the name belonged to too. I realised mid-way through the book that even though the whole thing was told from her own point of view, she barely spoke at all. This book is told mostly through her thoughts and her illness. She was extremely intelligent and flawed and me describing her doesn’t do justice to her character at all.

3.       The OCD/ Anxiety rep is INTENSE. And it felt so real and palpable to me. There was this one particular scene where Aza’s ‘rational’ brain and her illness are battling it out against each other and I had to put the book down after because John Green and Aza make you FEEL and I needed a breather.

Image result for turtles all the way down john green4.       I think one of my big problems and the reason that this book wasn’t a five star for me is the pretentiousness of the characters, specifically the best friend Daisy. I’m ALL for pretentious characters but why does EACH AND EVERY CHARACTER HAVE TO BE PRETENTIONS/ MANIC PIXIE DREAM-Y? Daisy was… obnoxious. And RUDE and honestly, AN ASSHOLE. AND RUDE AND HORRIBLE and she *SPOILER* wrote fanfic about her best friend who had a debilitating mental illness by calling her ‘useless’ and an idiot and it HURT ME PHYSICALLY THAT SHE COULD DO SOMETHING LIKE THAT. HOW. I wanted to strangle her because she was NOT A GOOD FRIEND AT ALL. STOP.

5.       I’m not 100% sure how I felt about the romance between Davis and Aza. I LOVED them as individual characters and I loved their interactions but it was a little too flawless for two teenagers. I loved them and I also… didn’t? I’m a confusing person, I know.


All in all, this book is real and brilliant and intense and it talks about who we are, who are thoughts belong to and it will make you FEEL. This book makes you understand mental illness in such an intimate and personal manner and I have, once again, been left in awe of John Green’s masterful writing. 4 stars. 
John GreenJohn Green's first novel, Looking for Alaska, won the 2006 Michael L. Printz Award presented by the American Library Association. His second novel, An Abundance of Katherines, was a 2007 Michael L. Printz Award Honor Book and a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. His next novel, Paper Towns, is a New York Times bestseller and won the Edgar Allen Poe Award for Best YA Mystery. In January 2012, his most recent novel, The Fault in Our Stars, was met with wide critical acclaim, unprecedented in Green's career. The praise included rave reviews in Time Magazine and The New York Times, on NPR, and from award-winning author Markus Zusak. The book also topped the New York Times Children's Paperback Bestseller list for several weeks. Green has also coauthored a book with David Levithan called Will Grayson, Will Grayson, published in 2010. The film rights for all his books, with the exception of Will Grayson Will Grayson, have been optioned to major Hollywood Studios.

In 2007, John and his brother Hank were the hosts of a popular internet blog, "Brotherhood 2.0," where they discussed their lives, books and current events every day for a year except for weekends and holidays. They still keep a video blog, now called "The Vlog Brothers," which can be found on the Nerdfighters website, or a direct link here.
What's your favourite John Green book?
What are some of your favourite book on mental health?
Have you read Turtles All The Way Down? What did you think of it?