Friday Read- Bittersweet by Sarah Ockler

Standard

Summary: “Once upon a time, Hudson knew exactly what her future looked like. Then a betrayal changed her life, and knocked her dreams to the ground. Now she’s a girl who doesn’t believe in second chances… a girl who stays under the radar by baking cupcakes at her mom’s diner and obsessing over what might have been.
So when things start looking up and she has another shot at her dreams, Hudson is equal parts hopeful and terrified. Of course, this is also the moment a cute, sweet guy walks into her life… and starts serving up some seriously mixed signals. She’s got a lot on her plate, and for a girl who’s been burned before, risking it all is easier said than done.
It’s time for Hudson to ask herself what she really wants, and how much she’s willing to sacrifice to get it. Because in a place where opportunities are fleeting, she knows this chance may very well be her last…”

So I’m kinda cheating by counting this one, but hey I did finish it on Friday! I started this about a week ago for my book club and finally was able to sit down and finish it.

Warning: My reviews may contain spoilers. Nothing major but a few minor things that aren’t revealed right away. Beware!

This book had me instantly hooked. It’s a really cute story and has great characters. Hudson is extremely creative with cupcakes, all of which I would LOVE to eat. Her younger brother, whose name I’ve forgotten because she always calls him Bug! Bug seems like he’d be so cute. He’s young but is very smart and invents and creates new things. He is way beyond his years. Her best friend Dani is cool too but she bothered me a lot. Her character is probably my only complaint in this book. They’re constantly bickering. Towards the end it seems like every time Hudson does something it sets her off.

There’s quite a bit of boy drama and it’s hard to choose whose side to be on. If you’ve already read this, who did you like best?? Both treated her so well, it’d suck being her. There’s a lot of other guys in the book as well who are on the school’s hockey team. They’re all really funny and seem like fun high schoolers to be around. They tease her and end up quite brotherly.

Her relationship with her parents is so wacky. She doesn’t communicate with her mom well and doesn’t communicate with her at all. These relationships are very hard on her and a struggle throughout the book. Because of the situation she is in with them, she is forced to grow up quickly; working at the family diner, taking care of her brother and even has to help with bills!

This book shows a slight glimpse of the journey of a young, confused girl who is trying her best to keep it all together. recommended for girls with the warning that things to get sappy at times. But also a few doses of exciting sports!

4/5 Stars

Advertisements

Tuesday Read- Food, Girls, and Other Things I Can’t Have by Allen Zadoff

Standard

Summary: “FOOD, GIRLS, AND OTHER THINGS I CAN’T HAVE is the story of a boy who doesn’t fit–in his pants, in his family, in his school, or in his life.  If Andrew Zansky can only be thin enough, smart enough, or popular enough, he thinks everything in his life will be perfect. His father will come back home. The pretty girl in school will fall in love with him.  His Mom will be happy again.
While he’s working to achieve this fantasy future, Andrew eats.  A lot.  He buries his problems in his Mom’s mini-snacks, analyzing his world while stuffing down his feelings. “When I chew loud enough,” he says, “I can’t hear myself think. It’s like a little vacation.”  FOOD, GIRLS, AND OTHER THINGS I CAN’T HAVE follows Andrew’s journey to self-awareness and self-acceptance (by, unexpectedly, joining the high school football team). By the end of the story, Andrew stops living in his head and starts participating in life. Perhaps most importantly, he comes to understand that feeling different doesn’t make him weird or special; it makes him just like everyone else.”

Now I know I said my first read was going to be Wolfsbane, but the book proved to be too long! Also, I tried for three days to try to get into it, but I’m having a really hard time! It’s not bad and I’m making progress, but it’s still too much to finish in just one day.

So, my first book-a-day challenge book was Food, Girls, and Other Things I Can’t Have. Such a quick and easy read! This book is funny, touching, and inspirational.

Andrew Zansky tries something new: football. It reminded me a lot of the book Stupid Fast by Geoff Herbach in this way since the main character in that book also takes up football (another great, funny book). I liked this book too because of the fact that I’ve never read a book in which the main character struggles with being over weight. The insight was so surprising and real. While he attempts to appear cool and collected and at peace with his weight and tries his best to just live with it, he can’t. Girls don’t like fat guys, fat guys don’t fit in desks, being fat draws negative attention. These are all things that go through his mind and that he struggles with through the book. He’s extremely insecure and is constantly embarrassed. I felt so bad!

But, when he joins the football team, a lot of things start to turn around. While he still has family problems and a few best friend problems, school starts to be a lot different for him and he even scores friends in the popular crowd. Something that I found that was consistent throughout the story is how much Andrew lives inside his head. He day-dreams all the time and constantly is having conversations with himself in his head.

A problem I had: One thing that bothered me was at the end he started to get really mean and angry! And the thing is, I felt like he never really came back from that which bothers me. We all enjoy to see characters change and grow which he did, but he started to change negatively and by the end I didn’t see a lot of change in that.

Overall this book is great! A humourous, quick read that is one-hundred percent high school.

  4/5 Stars

 

 

 

Reading Habits = Sad

Standard

So it’s been a ridiculous amount of time since my last post. I didn’t check the date but I know I haven’t dont a post in months. I’m embarrassed by my reading habits and blogging habits these past few months to be honest. I couldn’t even remember my log in password! I even get behind in my book club, which never happens! But, I am going to get myself back on track! A lot of things have been keeping me busy lately but I love to read, so I’m no longer letting anything get in the way of it.

Starting today I am attempting the book-a-day challenge over Spring Break (wish me luck!). The first book I chose is pretty lengthy but it’s the second in a series that I have put off for a long time so I’m anxious to read it. Over this next week I’m going to attempt this book-a-day challenge and then have a post to go along with each!

My reading and blogging are waaaay behind, I know. 😦 But today that is turning around!

Forgive me??

First book for the book-a-day challenge = Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer

Wake by Lisa McMann

Standard

Summary: For seventeen-year-old Janie, getting sucked into other people’s dreams is getting old. Especially the falling dreams, the naked-but-nobody-notices dreams, and the sex-crazed dreams. Janie’s seen enough fantasy booty to last her a lifetime.
She can’t tell anybody about what she does they’d never believe her, or worse, they’d think she’s a freak. So Janie lives on the fringe, cursed with an ability she doesn’t want and can’t control.
Then she falls into a gruesome nightmare, one that chills her to the bone. For the first time, Janie is more than a witness to someone else’s twisted psyche. She is a participant.”

I’ve heard nothing but good things about this series, and even know people who have read is multiple times. So I’m not sure why I waited so long to read it! Lisa McMann visited my school (thanks, Lisa!) and we were able to pre-order books to get signed so that kind of gave me the little push I needed to get reading it.

This book is unlike any book I’ve ever read. It was sort of paranormal, but not as far fetch as most. At first it was hard for me to get into mostly because I was so confused. The way it’s set up is also different from most books so it took me a little while to get used to it. It gives you the date and time so you can tell how much time as passed, which later on I found to actually be helpful. After you’re all caught up on why things are happening it’s a really easy read.

This book is complete with the paranormal aspect of it, along with romance and also we see that Janie has a rough home life. Her mom is pretty much useless so Janie truly is raising and taking care of herself. This is sad because it really takes away from her childhood. I loved how Janie was so strong about it though. She wasn’t always whining and complaining, she accepted it and realized she was going to have to provide for herself. Who doesn’t love a strong female character? The romance in the story is also AMAZING. It wasn’t a full-blown romance novel by any means, but Janie and Cabel are perfect. Of course their relationship isn’t ideal and is far from easy but what fun would that be? I loved seeing them work together and be willing to look past certain things just so they can be together. I can only think to describe them as ‘so cute’.

One thing I’d like to say that bothered me was that when Janie would get sucked into someones dream, numerous times they’d be having the same dream. Even if it was a few years apart, the dream would be the same. Maybe this is just me, but I don’t ever recall having a repeat dream.

I cannot wait to read the second book in this trilogy, Fade! I think both guys and girls will enjoy this unique read, but I can’t exactly decide what kind of reader I would recommend this to! I think because it’s a little bit of everything, you’ll just have to read it to find out for yourself!

 4/5 Stars

 

 

 

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Standard

Summary: “Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris – until she meets Etienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he’s taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.

 As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near – misses end with the French kiss Anna – and readers – have long awaited?”

Love, love, LOVE this book! After I finished it I wished I could just keep on reading. I read this for my school book club and I’m so jealous of the people who are reading it right now. That’s how much I love this book.

From the very beginning I was hooked by the humor, romance, setting and the characters in this book. The setting was amazing for obvious reasons. I mean c’mon, it’s Paris! The craziest part is, Anna didn’t even want to go in the beginning! I want to go to Paris SO bad, so I was very much jealous of her. There was a lot of romance in this book and I’m also jealous of Anna again because she’s met Etienne. Everything that is Etienne seems amazing. He’s English, he’s funny, he’s charming, he’s hot. It’s no wonder everybody at the school is in love with him. The one problem for Anna is, Etienne has a girl friend.  Through out the book she struggles with this fact because Etienne seems to be giving her some signals, but she’s not sure how to interpret them. I loved reading about Anna’s feelings for him because it’s obvious she’s so in love, and whats better than a good love story, right? The whole time I was thinking, ‘Just be together’! But..something always seems to be standing in their way.

Anna was a good character because she’d never really had a relationship, and I enjoyed reading about her first real interest in someone. Her new friends were also neat characters because they all had such different personalities and along with the description of them, I could picture all of them really well. Her friends back at home, Bridget and Toph, I could also picture really well. Which is important because there’s nothing more irritating then reading a book and having a blank face for a character. Of course she loses touch with these two, but that’s to be expected since they’re so far away from each other for so long. But you do get to learn a little bit about them. My best friend also read this book and said she thought it was funny how at the end of the emails Bridget would send, she would say thing like ‘You suck’ instead of ‘I miss you’ or ‘I love you’. She said she could see me saying something like that to her if she went away 🙂 I don’t really have an opinion about Anna’s mom because she isn’t really a big part of the story but her dad definitely is and my thoughts about him aren’t good ones. He’s all about image, which is the reason Anna is away to begin with. He’s a famous author whose books get turned to movies, so he thought it was important his daughter went to school somewhere that meant something. In the end it turns out, but what kind of dad does that?!

Over all, I LOVED this book (Have I mentioned how much I love this book?). There was plenty of surprises and romance to keep it interesting and I could really connect with the characters. For sure one of my top favorites. I recommend this book for anyone looking for a good love story.

 5/5 Stars

The Sweetest Thing by Christina Mandelski

Standard

Summary: In the world of Sheridan Wells, life is perfect when she’s decorating a cake. Unfortunately everything else is a complete mess: her mom ran off years ago, her dad is more interested in his restaurant, and the idea of a boyfriend is laughable.

But Sheridan is convinced finding her mom will solve all her problems – only her dad’s about to get a cooking show in New York, which means her dream of a perfect family will be dashed.

Using just the right amount of romance, family drama, and cute boys, The Sweetest Thing will entice fans with its perfect mixture of girl-friendly ingredients”

I read this book for my book club. We drew names on who got to choose the first book, and my name was drawn! After looking at my to-read shelf on Goodreads, this is the one I decided on.

Sheridan Wells is a very confused girl in my opinion. She’s lived without a mother for years, and her father is really busy trying to get a deal in showbiz so he isn’t around that often. She also has a huge crush on the hottest guy in school, and to her surprise, he likes her back. But, another surprise for her, her best friend Jack also likes her. All of this, plus the fact she has to move to New York (but not if she can help it), is a lot of stress on her and at a few points she cracks. My fellow book club members thought that she was a brat and a drama queen, but I didn’t. Not that I can relate to anything that she went through, but to me it just made sense why she was so upset. Yeah, a few times she was a handled things the wrong way but how would you feel if you were in High School and your dad just up and moved you? She has two really close friends, and is also really close to the other people in town because she’s made so many cakes for so many different people. So I can see why she wouldn’t want to leave all of that behind.

This book also made me SO hungry. Her family owns a restaurant and a bakery and Sheridan is always talking about different dishes her dad is making and talks in detail about all the different pastries and cakes at the bakery. I watch Cake Boss sometimes and if you’ve ever seen it, these are the kind of cakes Sheridan is making. All by herself! I can’t imagine even trying to make a cake like those so I thought it was cool to read about someone my own age making them.

This story also had some romance in it, though it’s not the main focus. She’s torn by her feeling for Ethan (the hot, popular guy) and Jack (her best friend since pre-k). Through out the story you’ll see her struggling to decide you is best for her. Both really do like her and at first it was hard for me to decide who I personally thought was the better choice, but then after some unacceptable events, the choice was obvious.

Overall this was a really cute book and I think a lot of people will agree. I recommend this book to people who enjoy realistic fiction, love stories and don’t mind a bratty main character 😉 This book tells a really good and honest story

 5/5 Stars

Teach Me by R. A. Nelson

Standard

Summary: Teach Me invites readers inside an experience that fascinates everyone an affair between a teacher and student and gives an up-close-and-personal answer to the question: How does this happen?”

Teach Me is a book about a girl named Carolina who gets wrapped up in a forbidden relationship. Why forbidden? He’s her teacher, Mr. Mann. When I first picked this book up and read the description I assumed it would be similar to the book Boy Toy by Barry Lyga. I loved Boy Toy even though it was extremely disturbing, and disappointingly, this book didn’t compare :/ Maybe it was because it was nothing like I expected? I’m not sure. But I had a really hard time getting through it and an easy time putting it down. There’s a pretty big part of this that happens in the middle of the story that you may be able to guess, but I don’t want to give it away! The book mainly focuses on that part of the book.

An interesting part of this book, is that it made sense. It wasn’t weird and disturbing that they were together (If you read it, you’ll get it). They’re so much closer in age than the characters in Boy Toy so you’re not focusing on WHY the whole time. It kind of felt like the author was holding back a little bit. A lot of things were implied but it was kind of like okay this happened, don’t really want to get into that, so now let’s move on! And I can’t stand that! Certain things were detailed but a lot was just like yep, this and this and then this happened, and that’s all you get out of it. I think another reason I had a hard time reading it was because there were a lot of complicated words used and I felt like every other sentence was a simile or metaphor and I had to keep rereading it to catch it.

What I did like about this book was Carolina, because she is so real and you understand why she is feeling the things she is. Sometimes she does get on the dramatic side and you wonder, ‘What is she thinking?!’. But in the second half of the book she doesn’t know what to feel, and when she is feeling something she doesn’t know how to control it. She is pretty much going mad and it affects her life in so many negative ways. I also really liked her friend Schuyler, because no matter what he was ALWAYS there for her. Even when she was wrong, even when she screwed up big time, he still loved and accepted her. And friends like that are hard to find.

Overall, this book was okay. I’ll admit that the very ending was exciting and it was nice to finally figure out what was going on with Mr. Mann, but I wasn’t all that interesting in finding out, because it didn’t seem like that big of a deal.

 2.5 stars