Wilder Girls – Rory Power

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Wilder Girls by Rory Power

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Published: July 9th, 2019
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mystery, Horror, LGBTQIA+, Disease, Friendship


REVIEW:

Survival stories tend to grip me. There’s something really fascinating, I think, about the idea of ‘‘the survival of the fittest’’ or strongest, smartest, prettiest. It’s a competition. It’s a deadly game. Sometimes, there’s no use even trying because you can’t compare. You don’t have it in you to survive. You’re a follower, not a leader. Continue reading

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Every Note Played – Lisa Genova

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Every Note Played by Lisa Genova

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Library
Published: March 20th, 2018
Publisher: Scout Press
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Contemporary, ALS, Family


REVIEW:

Like a lot of people, I read STILL ALICE and let it change my way of perceiving Alzheimer’s disease. It was an unforgettable story and I learned more from it than I could have predicted. I still remember this one thing that has stayed with me for years: Alice claims that apparently if you hold someone’s gaze for longer than five seconds and they don’t look away, it means they either want to sleep with you or KILL YOU. That alone made me go WOW. Unfortunately, nothing in this book made me go like that. Nothing blew me away or made me say: ‘‘What, really? Noooo. I can’t believe this!’’ It did act as a tool to teach about ALS disease but I did not feel as connected to the characters as I did to those featured in STILL ALICE. Continue reading

Slayer – Kiersten White

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Slayer by Kiersten White

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Received: Simon & Schuster Canada
Published: January 8th, 2019
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, Powers, Family


REVIEW:

Read The Mortal Instruments instead. If you’ve read The Mortal Instruments, try Vampire Academy. If you’ve tried Vampire Academy, dive into Lady Helen. If you’ve dived into Lady Helen, plunge into The Stars Never Rise. If you’ve plunged into The Stars Never Rise, open Monsters of Verity. If you’ve opened Monsters of Verity, give the Grisha Verse a chance. If you’ve given the Grisha Verse a chance, lose yourself in Daughter of Smoke and Bone. If you’ve lost yourself in Daughter of Smoke and Bone, I’M OUT. Just read this book, it’s FINE. UGH you’re such a bookworm. You don’t need me. Continue reading

Blog Tour: Enchantée – Gita Trelease

36613718Enchantée by Gita Trelease

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: February 5th, 2019
Publisher: Flatiron/Macmillan
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Magic, Family, Romance


REVIEW:

Let me just take a quick second here to say that I finished four novels this weekend. It feels like I’m binge-reading (so you know it won’t last), because I only recently got back into reading fiction so it’s like my subconscious (and body overall) is trying to make up for the ‘‘lost time.’’ That said, if this book had been awful, I would not have forced myself to read it. My experience reading it may be a little different than an Anglophone’s experience because I went to a Francophone school and we looked at the French Revolution again and again and again. I also studied Marie Antoinette in my Art History classes, which helped humanize her in my eyes, because her family portraits showed her love for her children. Continue reading

Famous in a Small Town – Emma Mills

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Famous in a Small Town by Emma Mills

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: January 15th, 2019
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Romance, Friendship, Family


REVIEW:

I opened this gorgeous book expecting to smile and laugh at every chapter. Emma Mills always makes me think that, what with her original and feel-good-sounding premises. And her stories do start in a lovely, fun manner. But eventually and slowly, heavy themes creep into the storyline and grow. This is good, because it means we are gently guided towards more impactful situations instead of being thrown into them without warning. That doesn’t mean this book didn’t make me smile or laugh. On the contrary, I loved it BECAUSE it made me feel such diverse emotions: happiness, sadness, befuddlement, surprise, warmth… Continue reading

Two Can Keep a Secret – Karen M. McManus

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Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Published: January 8th, 2019
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mystery, Contemporary, High School, Romance, Family


REVIEW:

Overall, I found this to be much less eye-roll-worthy than ONE OF US IS LYING. The author still is too much in love with stereotypes… I mean, homecoming queens dying? Please. But I felt more engaged somehow with only two narrators, a boy and a girl (Ellery and Malcolm), love interests to each other and both involving themselves in the mystery case(s). Both are likeable and smart(ish) leads. Actually, anything I say about one of them basically immediately applies to the other because, frankly, they have such similar voices it’s hard at times to distinguish them. Continue reading

The Gilded Wolves – Roshani Chokshi

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The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi

My rating: 1 of 5 stars
Received: Library
Published: January 15th, 2019
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Action (I guess)


REVIEW:

The world is confusing: the more I read, the less I understand. The characters are bland: the more I struggle to picture them, the less invested I am. The premise promises but never before have I wished to chop a premise’s head off as much as right now. The writing is beautiful, so it has that going for itself, but I’m not as shallow as I used to be and so will not finish this book by consuming the purple prose alone. I need to CONNECT. If you can’t make me connect, you’ve failed in my eyes. Sorry not sorry. Continue reading