Book Review

Book Review | TARNISHED ARE THE STARS, by Rosiee Thor

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Tarnished Are the Starsby Rosiee Thor

Publish Date: October 15, 2019 (audiobook published October 1, 2019)
Published by: Scholastic Press
Audiobook Narrated by: Rosie Jones
Length: 11 hrs 17 min (384 pages)
Genre: YA Sci-Fi/LGBTQ+
My Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 out of 5 stars)


Synopsis:

A secret beats inside Anna Thatcher’s chest: an illegal clockwork heart. Anna works cog by cog — donning the moniker Technician — to supply black market medical technology to the sick and injured, against the Commissioner’s tyrannical laws.

Nathaniel Fremont, the Commissioner’s son, has never had to fear the law. Determined to earn his father’s respect, Nathaniel sets out to capture the Technician. But the more he learns about the outlaw, the more he questions whether his father’s elusive affection is worth chasing at all.

Their game of cat and mouse takes an abrupt turn when Eliza, a skilled assassin and spy, arrives. Her mission is to learn the Commissioner’s secrets at any cost — even if it means betraying her own heart.

When these uneasy allies discover the most dangerous secret of all, they must work together despite their differences and put an end to a deadly epidemic — before the Commissioner ends them first.


My Review:

I listened to this as an audiobook and so it took a little bit of getting into and understanding the world-building, but once I did I absolutely enjoyed it. I loved the characters and the plotline was intriguing, and it kept me completely enthralled throughout it.  Continue reading “Book Review | TARNISHED ARE THE STARS, by Rosiee Thor”

Book Review

Book Review | THE INFINITE NOISE, by Lauren Shippen

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The Infinite Noise (The Bright Sessions #1), by Lauren Shippen

Publish Date: September 24, 2019
Published by: Tor Teen
Pages: 336
Genre: YA Paranormal/Romance/LGBTQ+
My Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher through my workplace in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Caleb Michaels is a sixteen-year-old champion running back. Other than that his life is pretty normal. But when Caleb starts experiencing mood swings that are out of the ordinary for even a teenager, his life moves beyond “typical.”

Caleb is an Atypical, an individual with enhanced abilities. Which sounds pretty cool except Caleb’s ability is extreme empathy—he feels the emotions of everyone around him. Being an empath in high school would be hard enough, but Caleb’s life becomes even more complicated when he keeps getting pulled into the emotional orbit of one of his classmates, Adam. Adam’s feelings are big and all-consuming, but they fit together with Caleb’s feelings in a way that he can’t quite understand.

Caleb’s therapist, Dr. Bright, encourages Caleb to explore this connection by befriending Adam. As he and Adam grow closer, Caleb learns more about his ability, himself, his therapist—who seems to know a lot more than she lets on—and just how dangerous being an Atypical can be.


My Review:

I’m not really sure where to begin with this one. Part of me liked it, for sure, especially since I felt like I didn’t want to put it down a lot of times. But the other part of me felt…disconnected from the characters and storyline at times too. It had some good characters and a very cute and honest romance, but I also found myself at times feeling like I wasn’t completely invested in the characters and story. Continue reading “Book Review | THE INFINITE NOISE, by Lauren Shippen”

Book Review

Book Review | THE SUMMER OF JORDI PEREZ, by Amy Spalding

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The Summer of Jordi Perez (And the Best Burger in Los Angeles)by Amy Spalding

Publish Date: April 3, 2018
Published by: Sky Pony Press
Pages: 284
Genre: YARomance/LGBTQ+
My Rating: ★★☆☆☆ (2 out of 5 stars)


Synopsis:

Seventeen, fashion-obsessed, and gay, Abby Ives has always been content playing the sidekick in other people’s lives. While her friends and sister have plunged headfirst into the world of dating and romances, Abby’s been happy to focus on her plus-size style blog and her dreams of taking the fashion industry by storm. When she lands a great internship at her favorite boutique, she’s thrilled to take the first step toward her dream career. Then she falls for her fellow intern, Jordi Perez. Hard. And now she’s competing against the girl she’s kissing to win the coveted paid job at the end of the internship.

But really, nothing this summer is going as planned. She’s also unwittingly become friends with Jax, a lacrosse-playing bro-type who wants her help finding the best burger in L.A.; she’s struggling to prove to her mother—the city’s celebrity health nut—that she’s perfectly content with who she is; and she’s desperately trying to remain behind the scenes and off-camera where she feels she belongs, when she hangs out with Jordi, who documents her entire life in photographs.

Though crazy, summer’s been fun, and just as Abby starts to feel like she’s no longer the sidekick in her own life anymore, Jordi’s photography surprisingly puts her in the spotlight for the first time, and it feels more like a betrayal rather than a starring role. Can Abby find a way to reconcile her positive yet private sense of self with the image that other people have of her?


My Review:

I was looking for something that would make me super happy and swoony with romance and…sadly this was not it. I so wanted to like this book because I had heard such good things about it, but it just didn’t hit the right spots for me, you know?

Continue reading “Book Review | THE SUMMER OF JORDI PEREZ, by Amy Spalding”

Book Review

Book Review | GIRLS OF PAPER AND FIRE, by Natasha Ngan

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Girls of Paper and Fire, by Natasha Ngan

Publish Date: November 6, 2018
Published by: Jimmy Patterson Books
Pages: 336
Genre: YA Fantasy
My Rating: ★★★☆☆ (2.5 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an egalley from the publisher through Edelweiss in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Each year, eight beautiful girls are chosen as Paper Girls to serve the king. It’s the highest honor they could hope for…and the most cruel.

But this year, there’s a ninth girl. And instead of paper, she’s made of fire.

In this lush fantasy, Lei is a member of the Paper caste, the lowest and most oppressed class in Ikhara. She lives in a remote village with her father, where the decade-old trauma of watching her mother snatched by royal guards still haunts her. Now, the guards are back, and this time it’s Lei they’re after–the girl whose golden eyes have piqued the king’s interest.

Over weeks of training in the opulent but stifling palace, Lei and eight other girls learn the skills and charm that befit being a king’s consort. But Lei isn’t content to watch her fate consume her. Instead, she does the unthinkable–she falls in love. Her forbidden romance becomes enmeshed with an explosive plot that threatens the very foundation of Ikhara, and Lei, still the wide-eyed country girl at heart, must decide just how far she’s willing to go for justice and revenge.

TW: violence and sexual abuse.


My Review:

I really wanted to like this book. Going in, I was so excited for an Asian-inspired fantasy story about two girls falling in love while prisoners to a tyrannical King. It sounded inspiring and beautiful, and while there were moments of both, particularly in certain passages and quotes, I was just so utterly bored throughout the whole story that I can’t help but being disappointed in this book. The plot dragged, with characters that were only slightly interesting, and the twists were so predictable that I was completely unenthused even when the action started happening. If it hadn’t been for the fact that I made it past the halfway point and was not in the mood to start something new while I was in tech for a show, I would have DNF’ed this a lot sooner. But with all the positive reviews I just kept hoping it would get better, but it just never did for me. Continue reading “Book Review | GIRLS OF PAPER AND FIRE, by Natasha Ngan”