Thursday, 29 August 2013

Summer Wrap-Up

How was your summer? I know I had a great summer, and read some great books. This list is the books I've read since June 28th until now. I will be listing them and providing a very short mini-review of how I felt about them, as well as the rating.
A gorgeous picture of the lake we visited, before sunrise,
taken by my dad. (: 

1) Fairest by Gail Carson Levine (re-read)
*** (three stars)
I first read this book many years ago when I was younger, and loved it. It was sitting on my shelf and I just felt like reading it again, so I did. This time around, I still enjoyed it and am glad I took the time to re-read it, but it's definitely geared for younger people. 

2) City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
*** (three stars)
I thought I would love this book, but it was okay. Some parts were very good, but I disliked the main character and many parts were drawn out. I was also extremely disappointed and lost all respect for Clare when I saw how much resemblance it bore to Harry Potter (and the fact the book was originally a Harry Potter fan-fiction doesn't help), and I've heard she's plagiarized other sources. 

3) Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris
**** (four stars)
There aren't many YA mysteries out there (other than mean-girl types, like Pretty Little Liars or Gossip Girl), so I was really excited when I was reading this and it had awesome mystery elements. However, the way the romance played out wasn't my favourite, and I may've been the only one who liked it better without the sci-fi twist. That being said, it was still an amazingly exciting, suspenseful thriller. 

4) Pivot Point by Kasie West
*** */* (three and a half stars)
I enjoyed this book, though not quite as much as I thought I might. It was really interesting to see how Addie's two different lives would play out, and the supernatural element was wrapped into the story in a really great way. That said, it didn't completely enrapture me with the story.

5) The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
**** (four stars)
This was a very entertaining, fun twist on the classic piece by Shakespeare, A Midsummer's Night Dream. The 'iron king' idea was brilliant. I didn't love the main character (or the romance between her and Ash, which I've heard just increases as the series goes on), and though I loved Grimalkin, he was exactly like the Cheshire Cat. Still though, I really enjoyed this read. 

6) The Help by Kathryn Stockett
***** (seven-hundred-thirteen stars)
This is by far the best book I read this summer. It was absolutely phenomenal, and there was nothing I would change at all. Not only was it a very important story to be told, it was entertaining, funny, heartfelt, and made me feel every emotion at once. I couldn't have asked for anything else in a book. 

7) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
**** (four stars)
Though this was a very enjoyable book, considering the hype, I didn't love it as much as I had completely expected I would. I really liked the characters, and middle and end part of the book was very emotional, and also love John Green's writing style and amazing quotes. But it just didn't completely move me and amaze me like say, the Help did.

8) Once Upon a Time: A Collection of Classic Fairytales by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, illustrated by Kevin Tong
**** (four stars)
I originally saw this on The Readables channel, and had been wanting to read The Grimm Brothers original fairytales for a while, but the deciding factor for me buying this and taking it on vacation was because I became obsessed with the TV show Once Upon a Time. I had to return the first season to the library, and I needed more fairytales. So when I saw this

9) Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
**** */* (four and a half stars)
I absolutely loved the first book is this trilogy, Shadow and Bone, so I really wanted to read the sequel. This one was almost as good as the first, it was very exciting and I loved the new character. However, this third person also turned the love triangle into a love square, which was annoying. And one word why my rating was bumped from an averaged five to four: Mal.

10) Ink by Amanda Sun
**** (four stars)
I loved the Japanese culture throughout this book, it was really interesting to read about another place and the unique mythology. The idea for this book was brilliant, but often got bogged down by Twilight-esque romance. I think this novel could've gone a lot further if the mythology was more developed and took more of a main role in the story.

11) Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt
**** (four stars)
It took me less than two days to read this super-short contemporary. It was super fun and entertaining to read! I loved the idea of the list from her grandmother's time, and it was overall just really fun to read. I didn't like how it felt she always had to be reliant on a boyfriend, but still a super cute read.

12) Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
***** (five stars)
I can't get over how amazing this book was! I am not a huge contemporary person as far as genre goes, but this just completely surpassed my expectations. I wasn't a big fan of my first Dessen book (What Happened to Goodbye), so I was happily surprised at the emotion I felt at reading this book. It had everything in it: humour, sadness, lonliness, family, romance... just everything. And I loved the characters, particularly Annabel, Clarke and, of course, Owen.

Wow. That does look like a lot of books. Anyway, I am currently reading Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas, and so far it's super entertaining, exciting, and funny. I'll tell you about it once I'm finished. Next I'm planning on reading another Sarah Dessen book or My Life Undecided by Jessica Brody.

Thanks for reading!

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