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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2

Hey, everyone! It’s Monday again, which means I’m back with another “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” post, hosted by Kathryn @ Book Date. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to meet my weekly goals last week since True Born took so long to read. That’s probably why I’m a little less ambitious for my reading list this week… Hopefully it works out well! 🙂

What I Read Last Week: 

true-born geekerella

What I’m Currently Reading: 

paper-hearts

What I’m Planning to Read Next: 

radio-silence just-visiting

Well, that’s all I’m planning to read for now! I’m especially excited for Radio Silence and hope to read it soon! 😉 What are you reading this week? Is it any interesting? Let me know in the Comments Section below! And thanks for reading!

–  Sumaya

Book Blitz: True North by L.E. Sterling

About the Book:

True Born by L.E. Sterling

Published on May 3rd, 2016

Published by Entangled Teen

Genre: YA Fantasy/Science Fiction

Summary:

Welcome to Dominion City.

After the great Plague descended, the world population was decimated…and their genetics damaged beyond repair.

The Lasters wait hopelessly for their genes to self-destruct. The Splicers pay for expensive treatments that might prolong their life. The plague-resistant True Borns are as mysterious as they are feared…

And then there’s Lucy Fox and her identical twin sister, Margot. After endless tests, no one wants to reveal what they are.

When Margot disappears, a desperate Lucy has no choice but to put her faith in the True Borns, led by the charismatic Nolan Storm and the beautiful but deadly Jared Price. As Lucy and the True Borns set out to rescue her sister, they stumble upon a vast conspiracy stretching from Dominion’s street preachers to shady Russian tycoons. But why target the Fox sisters?

As they say in Dominion, it’s in the blood. 

Add to Goodreads

Purchase from the publisher’s site

True North by L.E. Sterling

Published by Entangled Teen

Published April 4th, 2017

Genre: YA Fantasy/Science Fiction

Summary:

Abandoned by her family in Plague-ridden Dominion City, eighteen-year-old Lucy Fox has no choice but to rely upon the kindness of the True Borns, a renegade group of genetically enhanced humans, to save her twin sister, Margot. But Nolan Storm, their mysterious leader, has his own agenda. When Storm backtracks on his promise to rescue Margot, Lucy takes her fate into her own hands and sets off for Russia with her True Born bodyguard and maybe-something-more, the lethal yet beautiful Jared Price. In Russia, there’s been whispered rumors of Plague Cure.

While Lucy fights her magnetic attraction to Jared, anxious that his loyalty to Storm will hurt her chances of finding her sister, they quickly discover that not all is as it appears…and discovering the secrets contained in the Fox sisters’ blood before they wind up dead is just the beginning.

As they say in Dominion, sometimes it’s not you…it’s your DNA.

Add to Goodreads

Purchase from the publisher’s site

About the Author:

I was a voracious devotee of sci-fi and fantasy novels all through my childhood, so I suppose it doesn’t come as much of a shock that I’ve returned to the genre with a vengeance.

For a while I turned my back on the genre in favour of ‘high-brow’ literary texts. Ironically, it was my doctoral degree that saw me circling back. There’s something about the way postmodern literature plays with the arcane that had me utterly fascinated, and it wasn’t long until I fell headlong back into my old ways and haven’t looked back since.

My first novel, which isn’t in the Urban Fantasy or Fantasy genres, isn’t high literature, mind you, even if it tangles with some serious statements about politics and the way our western world runs. My editor described it as something between Charles Dickens and The Catcher in the Rye: Serious Fun, in other words.

My second novel, Pluto’s Gate, is where I’ve come home to myself: it’s a contemporary retelling of the Demeter-Persephone-Pluto story from Greek mythology. Folded into the mix is a Shaman-in-training, a magical book, Underworld Gods, a world covered in ice, a three-headed dog, and one lousy ex-boyfriend.

But I’ll tell you this much: I believe in the power of words and stories to transform our inner worlds. Whether the characters be vampires or vagabonds, a good narrative sucker punches so-called reality anyhow.

Author links: Website|Goodreads|Twitter

Excerpt: 

Read the first 6 chapters HERE

Giveaway:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

www.yareads.com

Down the TBR Hole 2

Hey there, wonderful readers! I’m back for a second time round with the meme, Down the TBR pile, hosted by Lia @ Lost in a Story. This meme is dedicated to uncluttering your TBR pile, going through each book and choosing which one should stay or go. So, without further ado, here are the books I’m considering this week!

The books:

1.  The Royal We by Heather Cocks

the-royal-we.jpg

I actually read a sneak peek of the novel way back when and didn’t like it as much as I thought I would. I just forgot to take this book off my TBR pile right after that…

The verdict: Go

2. Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler

under-the-lights.jpg

Even though I didn’t really like the first book, I’m willing to give the second book a try That’s because the secondary characters that I loved in the first book are going to be the protagonists of this one! Now, if only I could just get around to reading it…

The verdict: Keep

3. The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

the-kiss-of-deception.jpg

I actually borrowed the book from the library several times without having even read it. I don’t think I will at this point…

The verdict: Go

4. Crave by Melissa Darnell

crave

I remember putting this on my TBR at a time that I really liked this sort of thing. Now, I’m not really into the whole star-crossed lovers trope.

The verdict: Go

5. Dark Mirror M.J. Putney

dark-mirror.jpg

Every time I think about removing this book from my TBR, I read the synopsis, reminding me why I want to read it and makes me unable to let it go! And this time is no exception! 😀 It just has this Shadow Falls vibe that I really like.

The verdict: Keep

Well, that’s it for this week’s Down the TBR Pile! Were there any books here that you’ve read and liked? Or are they on your never-ending TBR pile as well? If you have any thoughts about this week’s Down the TBR Pile, feel free to leave a comment in the section below. Take care, everyone! And keep reading! 😉

–  Sumaya

Review: #famous by Jilly Gagnon

My rating:

pink3

Hey there, fellow readers! I’ve finally gotten around to reading #famous by Jilly Gagnon! Hooray! 😀  It’s always nice to see a book go from your TBR pile to the Read pile on Goodreads. 😉 Even though I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would, I’m glad that I read it. The book alternates between the perspective of our two protagonists, Rachel’s and Kyle. One day, while at the mall, Rachel posts a picture of Kyle working at Burger Barn to her friend, Monique, only to have it become viral within just a day’s time. This book focuses on how they both handle the pressure of being put into the spotlight, all the while wondering if there is something between them. It sounded really cute, and I still like the idea of the premise; I just don’t like certain aspects of the book.

One thing I was in full support of was the romance factor in the book. That was just off-the-charts-cute! Usually, I wouldn’t care as much about the romance within a book compared to the other components, like plot or character. It’s not that I don’t like a good pairing; it’s just that sometimes, I don’t think it really adds anything to the story. In this case, it was all about the pairing, and I think the author did a good job in making sure they clicked.

What I didn’t like though was the way girls were only portrayed as “catty” to each other. The day after the picture went viral, people were downright horrible to Rachel, but super nice to Kyle. Even Kyle didn’t think much of it other than the fact girls could be mean. He didn’t think more of it unless prodded by his friend later on. I’m not sure if it’s the author’s way of critiquing society at the moment or if it’s just part of the cliched contemporary YA novel, where cliques and status quo in high school matter… There wasn’t much reasoning behind it, which made me question whether the Contemporary YA stereotype of mean girl is being used just for a nemesis role rather than another character with complex feelings. At least I could see more of a developed character with one of the popular girls, who actually felt bad for Rachel and empathized with her…

I also didn’t like how some issues were left unresolved, like with Rachel and Jessie, or Rachel’s mother. I wish we were given more answers from their point of view, but we don’t get more than the limited perspective of our two protagonists.

Well, that’s my take on #famous by Jilly Gagnon. While I did start out liking it, the book didn’t stand out for me compared to the other Contemporary YA novels out there… What did you think of #famous? If you have any thoughts or questions, feel free to leave them in the Comments Section below. Thanks for reading!

– Sumaya

Review: The Warden’s Daughter by Jerry Spinelli

My rating: blue3

(3.25 stars)

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Hello, wonderful readers! I recently read The Warden’s Daughter by Jerry Spinelli, brought to me via NetGalley. It’s about a girl named Cammie who lives in a prison as the warden’s daughter. During the summer of 1959, before Cammie turns thirteen, she deals with problems of both past and present, working to ultimately move on.

It’s hard to know if I liked this book or not. I mean, I did want to read it till the end, but during that point, there was mostly skimming involved. I got really bored with the protagonist’s story after hearing about all the mayhem she caused. I felt as if someone should have been there for her a long time ago, and that she got away with way too much just because she’s the warden’s daughter as well the tragedy that surrounded her. I felt that the treatment she was receiving was not the proper response in raising a child. It’s not that her father didn’t do the best that he could, but there were hints that there relationship wasn’t the most communicative.

That’s actually a big problem area for Cammie. All throughout the novel, I wished for  more interaction between Cammie and others. That girl was more stuck inside her head that outside with the rest of the world. For good reason, too, she was the protagonist and it was her personality. It was probably what the author was going for anyways, seeing as Cammie does refer to herself as an isolated person. I just didn’t like it so much because all you saw was her being mean to people. I think it was meant to point out how damaged Cammie’s relationships with others was and if she wanted to mend those relationships, something had to change. And while I did like her maturity at the end, I didn’t like how it developed: out of nowhere. I really don’t like when that kind of development is rushed because it’s less satisfying for me to read about. I thought that Cammie’s development within the novel was really flat until the end, where it suddenly spiked and she was shown to be a level-headed and mature person. Overall, this book had its ups and downs, making it more of a 3 star rating than a 4 star one.

That’s all I have to say about The Warden’s Daughter by Jerry Spinelli. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave them in the Comments Section below. Have a nice day, everybody!

-Sumaya

Top Ten Tuesday: New-to-me authors

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Hello, fellow readers! I know it’s been a while since my last Top Ten Tuesday (two weeks), but I’m back now! 😀 This week’s Top Ten is dedicated to those authors you’ve just discovered within 2016, no matter if they are actually new or not. Here are the authors that have made my TTT, along with the books I’ve read by them:

1.  Lindsay Ribar

falling-rocks

2. Colleen Hoover

it-ends-with-us.jpg

3. Kendare Blake

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4. Emery Lord

the-start-of-me-and-you-2

5. Cinda Williams Chima

the-demon-king

6. Huntley Fitzpatrick

16101144

7. Amie Kaufman

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8. Alice Pung

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9. Dahlia Adler

behind-the-scenes.jpg

10. Jodi Picoult

off-the-page.jpg

Well, that’s it for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday! In the case of some of these authors, I can’t believe I waited this long to read their books! Were there any authors on your TTT that made you feel that way? If you have any thoughts or questions, feel free to leave them in the Comments Section below. Have a nice day!

–  Sumaya

Review: Alterations by Stephanie Scott

My rating: pink3

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Hello, fellow bloggers! I haven’t reviewed a book in a while, but I’m breaking that streak with this review! 😉 It’s on Alterations by Stephanie Scott, which focuses on Amelia’s story as she goes to New York for a summer fashion program and leaving behind everything familiar, including the Laurenti brothers, Ethan and Liam. It sounded interesting, due to the fashion aspect, so I requested it on NetGalley right away. Even though I didn’t like Alterations as much as I thought I would, I’m glad I got a chance to read it.

I liked reading this book at certain times, like when Amelia is working on her fashion projects. I just love seeing the enthusiasm that comes out of her in those moments. Truth be told, I actually chose to request this book because of the fashion side of things. I wanted to see more of that, instead of the weird love triangle that Amelia has surrounded herself in. So, yeah, I’m a bit bias in that regard, and it is probably the reason I didn’t completely like the book. Because I only liked part of the premise. In fact, I kind of wished that the book ended with Amelia finishing her summer program, and expanded a bit more on that instead of the romance factor that had to be dragged out longer than it should have been. Even when she had an epiphany about it.

As for the characters themselves, I don’t think I really liked them. With a few exceptions, like Amelia’s relationship with her mother and grandmother, I didn’t like the characters’ personalities or their interactions with each other. I guess the main thing I didn’t like when it came to the characters was Amelia, Ethan, and Liam. They were just so annoying at times that I couldn’t even believe them! Plus, there’s the fact that I’m not really a fan of love triangles (unless it’s Tessa, Will, and Jem from The Infernal Devices).

Well, that’s all I have to say about Alterations by Stephanie Scott. If you like love triangles and fashion (but not necessarily together), then this is the book for you! If you have any thoughts or questions, feel free to leave them in the Comments Section below. Thanks for reading, everyone!

– Sumaya

Review: The Silent Songbird by Melanie Dickerson

My rating: green1-5

(DNF at 33%)

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Hello, again! Another day, another review! This one is on The Silent Songbird by Melanie Dickerson. Now,  I don’t believe I’ve ever written a DNF review, but there’s a first time for everything. The story is based on The Little Mermaid and follows Evangeline, a ward of King Richard, as she tries to escape her a political marriage by running away and pretending to be a mute servant. Along the way, she meets Westley, whose kindheartedness and good looks she falls for. But things get complicated as the truth about Evangeline’s true standing becomes known. When NetGalley granted my wish for this request, I was really excited. Especially since I enjoyed the author’s previous book, The Merchant’s Daughter. I’m sorry to say that I had to DNF this book at 33%. The reason behind this was that I didn’t want to read a book that I had a lot of problems with. For instance, I felt as if the book had more potential to be uncovered by the author. The amount of dialogue in this book compared to description is a lot more, and I didn’t think it was that developed. The story premise was intriguing to me, so maybe if the book is worked on a bit more, then it would have reached its potential.

Then, there was the insta-romance. When it comes to love and romantic relationships, I really hate instal-romance. I feel as if it’s a quick way to get characters to connect with each other for the purpose of the story. It didn’t seem like Evangeline and Westley were really attracted to each other, but more of their ideas of the other. I’d rather have a build up when it comes to emotional attachment, instead of characters liking the first pretty face they saw and just trusting them because of that. In fact, what really bothered me was the fact that in this novel, pretty equaled good guys and ugly equaled bad. If this was simply meant to be a fairytale set in the 1300s, I get it, but come on; this is a fairytale adaptation. It should be at least more complex than that.

Other than that, it just didn’t feel real enough to me. The story depends on people being kind hearted to Evangeline in a time where things were really tense since the peasants’ Uprising happened recently. And I’m not just talking about respecting others. I’m talking about how no one minds that she can’t really work even though she’s pretending to be a servant. Wouldn’t anyone be suspicious of her real talents? Overall, I think that I was expecting more from the premise, but the book didn’t meet my standards.

That’s all I have to say about The Slient Songbird by Melanie Dickerson. I didn’t really enjoy it, but maybe it gets better in the second half of the book. Who knows? If you have any comments or questions, please leave them in the section below. Thanks for reading!

–  Sumaya

Which Cover Wednesday 44

Hello again, lovely readers! Welcome back to another Which Cover Wednesday! Which Cover Wednesday is a meme I host where I compare two different covers of the same book and give my opinion on which does it better. And you can join in on the fun as well, by commenting about these covers in the Comments Section below. Here are this week’s covers:

1. The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh

the-rose-and-the-dagger.jpg or the-rose-and-the-dagger-2

I really like the second cover! It’s so simple in design but the execution behind the idea is amazing! Those rose petals look exquisite as well as the dagger and the cloth under them. Plus, the typography is great! Not that I don’t like the first one; I just like the like the second one more…

2. This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

this-savage-song.jpg or this-savage-song-2.jpg

This is a really, really hard choice! Both these covers would have my vote against almost anything else, but given some context, I like the first cover a bit more since it has a violin on the cover. These two covers look really gorgeous though…

3. Boys Don’t Knit by T.S. Eaton

boys-dont.jpg or boys-dont-2.jpg

While both these covers look pretty similar, I guess I like the darker cover of the two. It uses more of its background. Plus, I prefer a darker background in comparison to a brighter one.

4. Fury by Elizabeth Miles

fury-2.jpg or fury.jpg

Second cover, second cover, second cover! The model’s bold stare on cover two is giving me chills! That’s the main reason I like this one better than the first cover.

Those are this week’s covers! Which one did you like the best? Any thoughts of questions are welcome in the Comments Section below. Thanks for reading!

–  Sumaya

 

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