Patron Saints of Nothing – Randy Ribay

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Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: PRH Canada
Published: June 2019
Publisher: Kokila
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Mystery, Family, Coming of Age, Culture


REVIEW:

This felt like a familiar tale in the beginning. Someone close to the main character dies and the main character is angry and seeks justice. Except in this case the tragedy happens in the Philippines, far away from the protagonist, and Jay is reluctant to accept the events that lead to the death of his cousin so he travels to the Philippines in order to find out the truth his family is potentially hiding from him. Continue reading

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Lanny – Max Porter

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Lanny by Max Porter

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: PRH Canada
Published: May 2019
Publisher: Strange Light
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Fantasy, Mystery, Magical Realism, Creepy, Short, Family


REVIEW:

This is an odd little book that I did not want to stop reading one second. It’s perplexing, confusing and creepy at times, but it has a fairytale-esque atmosphere that gives it a mystical quality, as though you’re lost in a forest, trying to find your way out of it, and the only way you can do that is by getting to the end of this story. Continue reading

Blog Tour: The Storm Crow – Kalyn Josephson

38330596The Storm Crow by Kalyn Josephson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: July 9th, 2019
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mental Health, Adventure, Romance, Friendship, Magic


REVIEW:

For some people, what apparently drew them to this book are the crow element as well as the allusion to Six of Crows, which I have yet to finish. Feel free to hate me. But what made me excited to start this personally was the fact that mental illness is discussed, even though fantasy worlds prefer to focus on the action and magic more than the relationship one has with themselves, their own body – mental health. I think bringing something typically contemporary into a non-contemporary genre can be refreshing, interesting and the pavement for new establishments in the said genre.

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Girls on the Verge – Sharon Biggs Waller

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Girls on the Verge by Sharon Biggs Waller

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: April 9th, 2019
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co (BYR)
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Abortion, Feminism, Women’s Rights, Friendship, Road Trip, Friendship


REVIEW:

It’s not easy to take a controversial topic, like abortion in this case, and create a not only meaningful but also engaging, refreshing and satisfying story that highlights this subject and makes you think critically about it. Yet the author succeeded. Whenever I pick up a book with a heavy theme, I brace myself and oftentimes expect to cry so I choose a ‘‘right moment’’ to read it. But the beautiful truth here is that every moment is the right one for GIRLS ON THE VERGE. Continue reading

Tell Me How You Really Feel – Aminah Mae Safi

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Tell Me How You Really Feel by Aminah Mae Safi

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: June 11th, 2019
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, LGBTQIA+, Romance, Filmmaking, Coming of Age, Family Dynamics, Enemies to Lovers


REVIEW:

This is a decent enemies-to-lovers story. I say ‘‘decent’’ because so many so-called love/hate relationships are so… tame. There’s no real hate, just annoyance. There’s also no real reason to hate the other person, just mild disagreements. But what I liked about this book is that it shows how two people—in this case two teen girls—can misjudge one another completely, assuming they have nothing in common and no way to connect, only to find themselves being drawn to one another almost unconsciously. Continue reading

You Asked for Perfect – Laura Silverman

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You Asked for Perfect by Laura Silverman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: March 2019
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, LGBTQIA+, Mental Health, Romance, School Pressure, Friendship, Family Dynamics


REVIEW:

I could have used this book a year before applying to college. That year, and the one before actually, I was intensely focused on my studies and cancelled many plans with friends, so many that by the end of the school year, I barely had anyone to say goodbye, good luck to. And I only realized my mistake when I did get into university, went to a few classes and realized that it’s harder to make friends when the teacher lectures and there’s little time to discuss in or between classes. Unless you go to events, socialize. Continue reading

Killing November – Adriana Mather

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Killing November by Adriana Mather

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: March 2019
Publisher: Knopf BFYR
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mystery, Boarding School, Secret Society, Romance


REVIEW:

I have no patience for this book. It’s all telling, no showing. I was warned but I like to SEE things for myself and I saw… very little. This secret society is way too secret for the reader’s wellbeing. By that I mean, I don’t know about you, but it drives me crazy to keep reading while learning almost nothing. Sure, the History of the secret society is somewhat provided, however I found everything to be so… unbelievable. Continue reading