Sunday, April 1, 2012

Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter

Wow this was a wonderful story!!! The levels of emotion in this book had me breathless. The moments of self doubt, jealousy, worthlessness, inadequacy, and longing are feeling that are not very foreigh to most people. Sometime I thought she was whinny, but when you look at it she was like many of us. She was insecure and she wanted badly not to be like the sister she felt she was constantly compared too. She wanted to be her own person, stand up for what she believed, protect the ones see loved, and be loved in return. She was very bold even in situations when I personally would have told her to shut up, but I respect her bravery and see did see results even when they were not the results she wanted.

This story was a huge emotional journey. She couldn't see in herself what others saw in her (like many of us) and it drove her to be even more miserable. Kate is a wonderful and beautiful character. Each book and novella shows her growing more mature and admirable. She is one of my new favorite heroines that I have discovered so far this year. Her courage is inspiring, and even her longing to be loved and excepted did not throw a bad light on her. She showed that yes it's ok to feel lonely and desire to be loved, however, it's your actions, motivation, purpose, and your treatment of others that make you who you are and affects how others will respond to you. Also, I think she shows that it's ok to be vulnerable with someone if it's for the right reasons. She also showed that it's ok to love someone and not be with them if it's better for your health and happiness. I loved her character for that.

Her relationship with Henry is so very strained at times, but I love her dedication and I understand her need for his reassurance. His past relationship showed the importance of thinking out your decisions when signing up to be committed to someone or something for a period of time. Because when/if you decide that one day that lifestyle is no longer for you, there will be many broken hearts/lives/spirit that will lay in you wake when you go. Also, Henry's past is more evidence of the need to look at things the way it is. It will save you much hurt in the end.

I really enjoyed the Mythological aspect of it. To me it was not the main focus of the story. It was really for the emotion and struggles in the book. I can not wait for the next installment!! This is such a beautiful story added in with the Mythology makes this a 5 star for me! (:      

♥ Valencia ♥

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff

First of all this is a Horror book so you might want to be wary of it. It is not spooky it's Horror. I had to stop midway through because stupid me started it as soon as I woke up. It can kick you down in the middle of the morning. I needed to get out of my head for a little while because it's not bad it's just something you shouldn't immediately wake up to. After coming back to it I was fine. The rest of the book I was fine too. It just got into my head a little bit too much. So with that rambling portion done let's get on to the book shall we?

So this town is crazy because I would have moved out way before I had a kid. Because they steal your kid. And replace it with one of their sick... creatures. And Mackie is one of those creatures. His family knows it but it's something they don't talk about. His "sister" is pretty devoted to him even though there is that underlying problem where he isn't really her brother. It's actually kind of odd to me how much they care and how he got friends because he was really sick in the beginning and everything was going wrong with him. I'm surprised. He wasn't a barrel of laughs if you know what I mean.

He stays in the background because everyone knows what he is but they deny it. But whenever something bad happens like oh say a girl in your class's sister dies he needs to keep his head down before he's bludgeoned to death. It wasn't even her sister Tate says. She's desperate to talk to him because he's the obvious choice. It's not like anyone else would know. So he avoids her. But with a person like Tate that isn't going to last very long.
This is where everything goes awry with Mackie's seemingly good life but truth is he's dying and there is only one place he could get help so of course there is a catch. Now Mackie has to make a choice. The life he's always known or the life he should have had.

Again so creepy but so good in the same sense. I know I keep on saying it and I know I'll probably say it the rest of my life concerning books but I didn't expect this book to be this way. I know what it was about actually in this case which I usually don't or don't remember before I start reading it.... But the characters were so different then what I expected. I didn't expect Mackie to be so... gloomy. And such a background type of guy. He was scary just because of how he acted and then he was not really human so that added to his odd vibe. I seriously could not have kept him if I were his mom. That's just depressing but whatever. Mackie was still quite interesting in his own way and I sort of warmed up to him. I know I must sound weird but this book was really good. If you've read it or if you are going to read it then you'll understand why I can't really describe that it was really good... it was just odd too so that's why I keep tripping over my words. So if you like Horror books I recommend this one and if you know of any others please tell me.

Rating: 4 stars

Gym Candy by Carl Deuker

This is NOT A GIRLY BOOK. Just wanted to put that out there because the title can sound misleading to others. I mean Gym Candy? Very misleading...

Mick Johnson was made for football. His father was once a football star even going all the way to the NFL but he didn't last... His father even set him back a grade so he would be a year older than everyone else. He has an advantage with his age and his who his father is because since he was small he was taught the game and he never gave him an inch. His mother doesn't really understand how much football means to him but that's alright. As long as he has football he'll be okay. And then he's starting as a freshman Running Back with his friend Drew by his side as Quarterback. They've known each other for a long time and their friendship will be rocked by how Mick starts to act. Standoffish, too busy, and unnecessarily angry. The problem is that Mick isn't good enough. If he was only stronger he could have won a game. And then later on he is threatened by another Running Back. He goes to steroids and from then on out we will discover how strong he really is.

Ah-Mah-Zing! There aren't that many YA Sport books out there so this one was a treat and then it was about steroids so it made it even more fascinating. I felt for Mick but I couldn't see why he was doing it only at the end. I guess since his father never went to his games unless he was starting... there was pressure from him. And with the new guy coming in but I really didn't see so much pressure in the beginning. One little mishap and then you go for steroids and then the side effects? Ew. Nevertheless this book was crazy good. I loved every minute of it. I think it was so close to being a 5 star book but then the pressure thing I didn't get. I didn't see it there.

Nice twist Deuker. You had me thrown off there for a second. It made you wonder at the end which I love when author's do that. I was even more impressed with this book because I read Runner by the same author and I didn't like it that much so when I read this one I was happy and relieved. Deuker redeemed himself in my eyes. So check it out if you like Sports books.

Rating: 4 stars

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Jump by Elisa Carbone

P.K. isn't doing so well at school and her parents have had enough so there shipping her off to boarding school miles and miles away. But P.K. is going to have the last word. Before they send her off she's going to run away. Not for long. Just long enough for her parents to change their minds. They just don't get her like her friends parents. I mean she showed them a book of teenage rebellion and she was allowed to study for classes at home. Not P.K.'s parents. So she wants to go on an adventure but no one wants to go with her until this boy walks in and he volunteers rights away. She doesn't know anything about him and that's fine by her... for now.

That boy I was talking about? Well his name is Critter and he's just got out of a psych ward. He has these really weird ideas about life. He sees the light of people so he can tell what their moods are.  He has different philosophies about life and his parents just think he is insane. He had to get out of there. His parents never gave him a chance. So he's hitchhiking with P.K. this incredible cute girl that no one wants to go with. Life's a hundred percent adventure. There is no past or future only now. And now he's not going to worry about the cops or being locked up again. But what happens when he starts to really fall for the girl? Will he be able to let her get hurt because of his problems?

LOVED THIS BOOK! So beautiful.... I want more books like this. I love nature books/sport books like this. And I kind of like books about crazy people. But Critter isn't crazy... well it depends on your point of view but he's just weird to me. I really cared for Critter and that... that AUTHOR! RUINED MY LIFE FOR A SECOND! That was messed up... you know what you did. But then there is P.K. and she was like sort of the stable one. She's like you when you're reading about Critter. Lack of a better word she's the sane one. I understand some of what Critter was saying but some of the things just went over my head honestly. Basically live your life to the fullest.

Her parents were killing me! Both of their parents in fact. P.K.'s parents and Critter's needed to listen to their children. Everything could be solved if you just listened. Critter's parents at the end... I realized they didn't really care. There are a couple of loose ends at the end but that's too be expected. In the end this book left me wanting more... more books like this and more stories that are deep in its way like this. It was so rewarding.

Rating: 5 stars

Monday, March 5, 2012

Video Rapper Lifestyle

We have all see those flashy music videos of the rappers throwing 100 dollar bills out like peppermints, with chains down to their kneecaps, and too many half-naked women to count. Many times when I watch these videos I have to wonder to myself, "What's the point?"

What's the point of having all this money every where, girls shaking what they mama should not have given them, and these ridiculously big chains that I'm pretty sure has your neck slightly suicidal? It finally dawned on me that it's all a show. At the end of the day those girls get dressed and go home, the money goes back to the bank, and the chains to a gold refinery. There is no point to this at all. It's just a show to make it seem like they are the ones with the ideal life.

I beat you're asking "What's the point of that statement?" The point is many of us are living the Video Rapper Lifestyle. We dress up and make our outside look real nice and pretty. We go about our day putting on an act trying to show everyone else how good our life is, or better yet trying to prove to ourselves how good our life is. You can make the outside the most beautiful thing in the world but that doesn't keep the inside from rotting and caving in. Your inside will continue to rot and spread poison until every cell, every thought, every breathe is infected with the poison you try to hide. The truth is when you go home and take off the jewelry, give back the money, and dismiss the video hoes the pain is still there. Until you confront the source of your troubles and give it to the person equipped to handle it, the poison will continues to spread. And once the  inside is gone and the outside has collapsed it will take more to repair what has been loss, eaten away, and torn apart than it was to give your problems to the Lord. He is the only one that can truly relieve you of your troubles. He knows all, has seen all, and loves all. There is nothing He can not do in your life! You don't need that Video Rapper Lifestyle the true beauty that lies in you is  great than any Video Rapper Lifestyle you can ever conceive. Don't be afraid to let your beauty shine!!! And remember His love for you is infinite no matter your Video Rapper Lifestyle. Read. Live. Learn. Love.

"Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved."- Psalm 55:22

Imagine Me- Kirk Franklin
Who You Are- Jessie J
Mirror- Lil Wayne ft. Bruno Mars
Today My Life Begins- Bruno Mars

♥ Valencia ♥

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Love You Hate You Miss You by Elizabeth Scott

Amy's tired of her parents acting like they actually care about her and not there ever loving relationship. She's always felt alone in her life. She's had friends before Julia. Friend's that treat her like crap and now it's Caro a.k.a. Corn Syrup who gets the abuse of her former leader Beth who could ruin your life in a second. Amy's so thankful she had Julia but now that she's gone she doesn't know what to do. She still hears her mother's whisper Murderer and knows that is what she is she'll never escape it. Now her life is After Julia. She has to deal with Laurie with her questions and pen clicking. As well as Mel who just talks and talks. Patrick is there too. Her almost... he's always quiet and she wonders what his sadness and anger mean. Love You Hate You Miss You is about choices in our life and whether or not we can forgive ourselves.

This was a pretty good book. Amy got to me when she started to describe their way of life. Alcohol, drugs, and sex. And maybe I don't know the people who do that and maybe Julia was a nice person but seriously I look at the people at my school and can't think beyond what I see. I really need to stop doing that. But the way they talk... so that was that. I felt bad for her. She was lonely because her parents were the opposite of what other books and actual people portray. They love each other a lot. To the point they are making out. Ugh. It's cool that they love each other so much but she was like a burden to them. I'm glad they were trying at least.

I actually liked Patrick and all his weirdness. I'm surprised other girls didn't. Girls like guys that they can "fix". But that wasn't it. He had a tough time and you know he saw life completely different. A way where you can have conversations with him that mattered. It was really weird that they just touched and were going to do it. That can't be realistic. Also the whole sex thing in high school... whatever. But it was a good book. I liked it. It was different then what I expected but again it was still good. I'm happy that I read it.

Rating: 3 stars

Monday, February 20, 2012

A Little Wanting Song by Cath Crowley

Charlie is the quiet type of girl who is awesome at singing the blues but can never get up on stage to show it. She was nine when her mom died. Her father has never gotten over it. He went from cool quiet everything under control to just quiet and never around. Whenever she tries to talk to him about something important he looks at his hands and gives her money so she'll go away. She used this so she can get some recording equipment. She works at a music store and sometimes gets singing lessons from one off the owners as well as guitar lessons from the other. The book has songs in the pages so you get sort of the feel of what she is like and what she sounds like even if it's only in your head. She has all this recording equipment but she never sings in front of people. Not even her dad.

Rose is always with her boyfriend Luke and friend Dave. Luke is always getting in trouble and Dave and her always get dragged down with him. Dave more than anyone because his dad has always given him a hard time... Well Rose wants more than anything to get away to the city. She got this scholarship to go to this science school but she never can tell her parents. Her parents who are going nowhere fast. Who gave up in life. She wants so bad to leave even if it means leaving Luke and Dave. She gives Charlie a hard time because all she does is stare at the group. But this "summer" which is during Christmas time??? It's Australia but I still don't understand. Well this summer she's figured out a way to get out of this miserable old town. She's going to make friends with Charlie. She'll be doing her a favor. She's going with her when she leaves.

Charlie is beyond likable. I was always angry at Rose because IF SHE DARED HURT HER! She would be in some real trouble with me. I mean she has like no friends and is just dangerously shy. Her two "ghosts" that follow her are her Grandma and Mom. She talks to them and it's so sad because those are the only two she could ever really talk to and now they're gone. Her father was killing me. NOTICE YOUR CHILD. I would be suffering too though. Seven years and I know I would be like him but seriously if I had a kid I hope I wouldn't act so stupid all the time.

God Rose. Finally I started liking you because you actually saw her. You were very irritating you know. Dave was cool. He was so sweet. I LOVE him. And then he's hurting too and you want to give him and Charlie a big old hug. I absolutely loved this book. It was beautiful. I think it's going to be in my favorites pile. It's that good. Read this book. You will fall in love too.

Rating: 5 stars

Friday, February 17, 2012

Sweethearts by Sara Zarr

Jennifer Harris now Jenna Vaughn and Cameron Quick used to be best friends as children. They were the outcasts. Jenna used to be bullied for her lisp and because he was chubby. She would cry a lot which inevitably gave the bullies more fuel to their fire calling her Cry Baby. She like Cameron had a tough home life. Well maybe not as much as Cameron... Jenna's mom is never home. She spent hours without her and when she really needed her she couldn't go to her. She has no father and no one else. She is alone.

Cameron has a similar situation in which he is also alone. His home life is tougher. You get a piece of it when Jenna slowly starts to tell you the story of her ninth birthday at his house with his father. And then soon afterwards he disappeared. Just. Like. That. But now he has suddenly reappeared. That boy who loved her. That boy who cared for her. That boy who made her feel safe. But now Jennifer is Jenna. She has a stepdad and she lives in a nice house, has friends, and even has a boyfriend. She's also skinny and will always watch her weight, what she wants to say (mainly that she's not always happy like her boyfriend wants her to be), and that she always smile even when she wants to cry. She is shocked when discovering that Cameron's back. He's supposed to be dead. And with him comes a whole set of feelings that she thought was left behind with her nine year old self. And now he wants to relive it.

This was a great book. When you finish it you start to contemplate life. But there is also this wanting more at the end. It had some "unfinished business" that needed to be addressed. First Jenna herself. She completely changed her name and at the end it was like she was okay with it. Maybe now that I think about it it did address it a little. It did say that maybe this was her now. But it was very vague. Also the food. She did start to eat more when Cameron came and let herself indulge in some things but it also was not really addressed. Those things could have added more to this otherwise great book. But I have to complain about the end before I continue. Well.. I have to be more specific now. The relationship at the end. It was so ridiculous how it ended. Can't say more without giving anything away.

So other than that it was quite good. There was the mystery of what happened on her birthday, her mother frustrating the hell out of me, and Cameron himself. Cameron was so weird. But I think he was always quiet like that. It was just weird seeing him in Jenna's world. The ring was odd too. It sent mix signals for the obvious reasons as well as it was kind of stalkerish creepy... Now Jenna and her boyfriend.... she spoke her mind once. Everything she said I was totally agreeing with her on. It was a pretty memorable moment that would make all women out there go "yeah!" So even though I've complained a bunch about the book know that all around it was really great.

Rating: 4 stars

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Chime by Franny Billingsley

Briony Larkin is wicked. She must always remember what she did. She sent a wind to knock her twin, Rose, down and she lost her wits because of it. She sent a wave to hit her stepmother which broke her spine which would have killed her if the arsenic didn't kill her first. She didn't kill herself though. Her stepmother loved life. She always protected her. Protected her from what she was. Warned her never to go to the swamp because her and the swamp are dangerous. They cause fire, water, and wind to come up and hurt everything and everyone she loves.. well she can't really say loves because she doesn't love anyone. She hates herself so how could she love anyone? It all comes down to jealousy. Jealousy of her stepmother spending more time with Rose. And for what? She ended up killing her. It ended up killing a part of her.

Now comes in the knight in shining armor right? Well sort of. Eldric the man-boy comes in with his golden mane of hair and his bad boy attitude. He becomes a friend. He actually makes her smile. He is there for her. But she's a witch. Unable to even cry much less feel that way. But why is it that he makes her want to cry?

As I got into this book I couldn't help comparing it to Plain Kate which I reviewed before. The difference was originally while I was reading that it was Plain Katey but easier to swallow. But it's more than that. The language was a bit hard to get into in the beginning especially with the self deprivation she had against herself. But I got into the story easily after that because it was unlike Plain Kate. It was about a girl who hated herself. A girl who was in pain. I just loved the story after that. I loved the tales of Wolfgirl and Lionboy. When he actually saw her it was truly magical. When she let a part of her let loose it was just fantastic. I never really thought about this till I got to the end. And oh how I loved how it just twisted into a direction completely opposite of where it said it was going. I had an inkling towards the end about what would happen but still. It unfolded beautifully.

I don't know what else I can say. Something cliched like it cast a spell on me perhaps? I guess I should go into the swamp. That's the most terrifying swamp I've ever heard of. It can just eat you up! The creatures that only she could see well.. also the Chime Girl who was no girl at all but an old woman. She had one foot in the shadow? world. The spiritual world I guess you'd say better. I just couldn't fathom from first reading this book how fantastic it was going to be. It was just that. Fantastic. I praise Billingsley with all my might! This was truly fantastic!

Rating: 5 stars

Monday, February 13, 2012

Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins

When Sophie Mercer was sent to monster school she had no idea what she would get into. She never thought she'd be best friends with a vampire who may or may not be killing off the school's mean girls, be haunted by a ghost who is actually her dead grandmother, or fall in love with the "pretty" boy of the school. But she did. Then a bomb was dropped on Sophie. She's a demon. And then she drops a bomb on everybody else. She wants to go through the Removal where she can get all her powers and demoness removed but the cost could be her life.

Now I'm sure you're wondering what happened with all of that. Well 6 months later she's still at Hex Hall after declaring she wanted to go through the removal. Her mom is there with Cal which sounds strange writing it now but didn't sound strange reading it so there must have been some sort of arrangement where he moved.... whatever. Her father comes to get her and she spends the summer at Thorne Abbey with...... Jenna and Cal! Yes, my friends Jenna is there. And Cal you know is just there to add to the whole love triangle thing. Hawkins sends you another of one those *gasp* moments with those two.

There are another two people thrown into the mix and they happen to be demons. "Wait. What?" you ask. "Demons are being raised?" *knowing smile*. Bwahahaha!!! Well Nick and Daisy are a strange bunch. Daisy is quiet until it's just them. The adults are just way too happy in Thorne Abbey. Creepily so. Nick is a bit wilder and you know it just by looking at him. And then of course there is the thing about Archer being in London....

So much better than the first! The other one wasn't bad at all but it even got better! The second book usually is eh compared to the first or an utter disappointed making you cry out and rant maniacally how horrible the author is and why? Why would they do this to you!? But Demonglass exceeded my expectations. My mind was blown more than once. The secrecy underneath... and then the Cal and Archer situation. I still can't decide! So many exclamation points....

Sophie again was her same sarcastic self which I am very happy about. She was what made me love Hex Hall from the beginning so I'm happy she didn't change much. She kind of grew up from the last book. She has more confidence. As you can tell from the difference in the two lovely book covers. The end is so evil! Like that's it and then I sob from wanting more. Nevertheless it was a great ending that has kept my mind occupied with different scenarios and hopefully there won't be any betrayals but I have a bad feeling that there will be which will make me rant and curse Hawkins! You know. The old standby. So you know I'm expecting Spell bound to be just as great if not better than Demonglass.

Rating: 5 stars

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sleepless by Cyn Balog

One word. Sandman. I was hooked when I saw that word. But I'll let you know a little more about it so you can be crazy hooked. Eron DeMarchelle died almost one hundred years ago in a milling accident. He is exactly as he was when he was human. A shy, sweet, dashing gentleman. He is finally able to turn back human to finish his "unfinished business" which he has no idea what it is. The deal was that he would spend a hundred years as a Sleepbringer and then get back to his life. He was able to have one of his charges his "beloved." Julia took her place after she died. He cares for her and would do anything to protect her.

Julia has always had people walking on egg shells when they were around her. At seven she had something happen to her. Something that left three marks on her cheek that she has always been self conscience of so when Griffin albeit not the nicest boyfriend ever accepts her she is happy. But then he dies. She doesn't show anything like he taught her. She doesn't even really know what she feels. And then there's Bret his best friend and he's like Griffin's twin. He starts acting weird as soon as Griffin dies. And so does her dreams.

I read this one slow on account of it was a group read that I suggested may I add. So the drama felt was even more because I had to wait. And I don't know how but the pages I had to read would always end perfectly with a cliffhanger. Duh duh duh! moments. Griffin was such a mystery to me. I had no idea if he cared about Julia or anything really. I still don't know if he cares about her. It was really weird but in a good way.

I HEART Eron. He's the type of guy that holds your door out for you and you just stare at in class dreamily. He basically made the book. I tried to picture him and the way he talked with the way he was described and my brain was all in a jumble. He's supposed to be this handsome Italian born guy who talks ridiculously proper. I just can't fathom it. Bret, Griffin's best friend, was an interesting mix to the plot. He kept me on my toes. Chimire, an Original, also provided me with questions to her character. Mostly who she liked and what was her deal? I seriously liked this book. It was well worth all that waiting.

"Whoa, whoa, whoa. How do you know they're not going to get it on?
"Get it...?" I begin but shake my head. -LOLOL!

Don't forget me, he seemed to say. You belong to me.

Rating: 4 stars

Monday, February 6, 2012

As Easy as Falling Off he Face of the Earth by Lynne Rae Perkins

Ry has gotten himself into a little bit of trouble. Well let's be honest a lot of trouble. He's gotten himself stuck out in the middle of nowhere after he left his train to get a signal. Why on earth would he do that you say? He just maybe forgot to read an important memo that the camp he's going to is no longer running. So what does he do? Leave his stuff on a train and goes climbing up a hill to get reception on an almost out of commission cellphone. So he heads his way to a town where he meets Del. Del loves fixing problems. And he just happens to be the one to find Ry disheveled with cuts all over his arms, a black eye, and only one shoe. But the big problem with Dell is he's stubborn. And he'll stop at nothing to get him home.

As he's adventure takes place he's parents, grandfather, and even his dogs are having their own little adventure. The parents can't communicate with him because monkeys have their cellphone, his grandfather fell down in a ditch, and his dogs trying to do something or get help (God knows what was going on in their head) decide to go home. Well something like that....

Ry was so very dramatic it was ridiculous. He was the comic relief. With all the things he got himself into it was nice having him there so I can see thing through the eyes of a normal human being. You know who's not normal? Dell. Dell just pissed me off throughout the book. Sure he was helping this guy out but no wonder you have no one with you... And I know that was just supposed to be his character and everything would turn out right in the end but you know what? I don't care. I still didn't like him. Half way through in fact I was tired of him. Which leads up to what I have to say next: This book was too long. Now I know you are going to think really? That's your problem with the book? Well to that I say yes. The book was too long. I have read books that are plenty long but this one just dragged on. Half of the book I liked and without Ry I would have stopped reading a long time ago. So for that I still say I liked it. I think others might have a better perspective of it so if you are shaking your head at me go ahead and read it. It might be just me.

Before I end the review I have to say that I really like this cover. It reminds me so much of Spirited away. (:


Rating: 3 stars

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder

A year ago Brooklyn's boyfriend Lucca died in a car crash now his best friend Gabe committed what suicide? Or was it an accident? She doesn't even know because they grew apart after his death. He overdosed and she can't believe it. He was given a chance while her boyfriend was not. Now the pain is even more unbearable. Everyone keeps dying around her. People keep leaving even her mother left with her twin brothers leaving her alone with her father who can't do anything so she does it for him. Making dinner, cleaning the dishes, doing the laundry.

She writes in her journal well Lucca's journal everyday. Tells him how much she misses him. Tells him how much she loves him. She has changed after his death. She won't make art like she used to. Won't draw her flowers. Everything is grey now. And then her dreams turn gray and ugly too because Gabe comes in them and then she runs away fear gripping her. He won't leave her alone either. Why is she dreaming about him when she's supposed to be dreaming about Lucca? What does he want?

Nico is running faster than ever. Running from the pain of losing his brother. He may be all cheery on the outside but it's only a mask. Impenetrable. Not only did his brother die but his best friend and even though he feels that everyone rather have Lucca here than him he still misses him. Bad. And when Gabe dies he feels it again but more anger then pain. How could he do that when his brother is dead? Why did he have to create more pain. Now the school is up to three deaths the first being a boy named Jackson that died about 6 months before Lucca or something like that. Then Lucca comes to him. Telling him to help Brooklyn. How's he going to do that? He isn't him.

I have been waiting to read this over a year and when I finally open it I'm like "What the...?" It's all because

The book
is written
like this.
It's called
which I
have no idea
what that is.

And I was like "Oh no!" Only because then I wouldn't be able to get to know the characters more. I liked it at times because some of the things said were powerful but other times I didn't especially towards the end because it was just too much. I wanted to get to know the characters. I wish there was only some verse. Or maybe it wasn't that. Maybe it was just that the characters didn't have much depth.

The whole thing with Gabe was really engaging me into the story. But then when he finally caught up to her I was disappointed. I thought it was just dumb. Why? It was just disappointing. Nico and Brooklyn's relationship was the good part of the book. Nico was sweet to her but then that's it. It wasn't as great as I hoped. It was just okay.

There were two sneak peeks of her other books and they sound exactly the same. Sorry but I don't think I'll be reading them.

 Rating: 2 stars

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The DUFF by Kody Keplinger

Snarky Bianca Piper couldn't be more different than her two friends. They are the tall, all legs, blond hair, bubbly, cheerleading type of people. It doesn't matter really. She's known Casey since Kindergarten after she defended her from schoolyard bullies and she has been doing the same ever since because Bianca likes to bottle things up so she worries about her. Jessica is always as sweet as can be and is unaware that her brother caused her pain many years ago.

Her real problems consist of a mother who never is home and a father who might break if she doesn't.Things start to get tough at home and her pure hatred towards the slut Wesley turns into desperation because he can offer her an excuse, an escape... distraction but when he starts to be a little more bearable and a little more understanding actually listening to her she questions whether or not she has feelings other than hatred towards the guy.

Honestly, I must have skipped the part where it says friends with benefits because that is NOT what I thought this would have. I thought they would just kiss or something... I guess my mind is a little bit innocent. Well not too much because I read it and may I add liked the book. First of all I was so happy that the problems in her life didn't feel fake. One thing I hate is when authors say how hard their characters life is but doesn't provide the emotion for it. Ahem *coughs* Perfect Chemistry...

Oh the most important thing I forgot to mention.  The DUFF stands for Designated Ugly Fat Friend. It's a nickname Wesley dubbed her. He explains that there is one in every group and you are considered The DUFF when you meet the description of the DUFF and you have really hot friends. He continues to say that if her friends see him with her he will win points with them and will have a better chance of getting them in bed. This little speech forces her to dump a cherry coke in his face. For good reason.

Why did I decide to read this you ask? Well you know how bad boys never change in real life? In books they do and I love when that happens. You may roll your eyes at me but I don't care. I can dream right? Wesley turns out all right in the end. There is a certain moment that you see the change and I absolutely loved it. It's a fist in the air type moment. Bianca unfortunately gets a little and I mean a little bit irritating. Her comments and the way she acted was kind of getting old towards the end but then the book ends so I didn't have that feeling for very long. Casey also kind of got on my nerves because she liked to poke around in Bianca's business way too much. She wanted to save her it felt all the time. Like she was that kindergartener that needed help from getting her pigtails from being pulled or whatever it was. I would be annoyed with her too if I was Bianca but Casey changed my mind and by the end I was liking her. Authors are always changing my mind at the end of books.

Speaking of authors. This one? Kody Keplinger? I always read the authors summary at the end of the book and really? REALLY!? You are 19 and are on your THIRD book? How I envy you... I have a bad feeling thought that Shut Out which I really want to read is going to be exactly like this one. We'll see I guess. Hopefully she stays on this promising author run.

And the end you learn a lesson. Haven't had a lesson laid out to me like that since I don't know when. So be prepared.

                                      Rating: 4 Stars

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Death Cure by James Dashner

Finally I can say that I read this book. After months of waiting (for some unknown reason) and rereading the others in the trilogy. So here we go. After the shocking ending where Brenda talk's into Thomas's head  you might be wondering what's with that!? So sorry that would be ruining some things. *evil grin* Anyways Thomas is left in an all white room his hatred growing for weeks. What's happened to the others? Thomas is patient and hardly reacts at all when the Rat Man comes in telling him he will see them again and soon he will get his memories back. But part maybe his guilt? doesn't want to get his memories back. He doesn't trust them poking around in his head anyways. He knows what they are capable of. He won't have them controlling them. The Rat Man drops a bomb. Some people are immune some people are not. *Cue crying* - you'll be doing this as early as the first 50 pages. It's just so horrible. Teresa seems to be against him all the way through and he can't seem to forgive her for that and what she did. Now The Death Cure is after all the trials. Now the cure will be revealed with a pretty shocking conclusion to what the cure is.

Ugh. I would sooo like to reveal to you the ones who aren't immune but I won't do it. I'm trying my hardest not to give it away. It creates a wave of pain in my heart... The last book isn't as action packed as the others but it's kind of expected. But I've got to say it wasn't as great. I know I shouldn't judge it negatively just because it doesn't have that much action but... what really got me wasn't that. The end just left me with... ugh inside. It was not very fulfilling. The book wasn't the great conclusion that I thought it would be. It still has its great twists.  but I really lost respect for Thomas. Still you kind of have to read it because it's the end of one of the greatest trilogies out there. And now I finally say farewell Thomas. I'll miss you...

                                     Rating: 4 Stars

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Young Love (Ladies)

Okay so I'm a senior this year *yay me* and this is one topic that really bugs me. I can't tell you how many people I see on a daily basis saying, "I love him so much! He's my 'boo thang'. We're going to be together forever!!" and then two weeks later they're hanging on someone else saying that other relationship was nothing serious. This is utterly ridiculous! I really wonder if these people can hear the ignorance pouring out their mouths. There's nothing wrong with dating in high school and having a serious relationship. The problem happens when after two days you're claiming that you're in love. So here's my two main reasons why this is a problem:

1. You're in high school. You have you're entire life ahead of you. It makes absolutely no sense to make such statements about your future, when you can't even decide on which earrings match your outfit. Don't try to make such commitments at such a young age. Thing change quickly and unexpectedly. Have fun with your relationships. Even if you do find yourself falling for a guy, maintain your standards. Never let your feelings blind you from the truth, and remember to ride the wave of life and be happy.

2. Love is a game. No it's not a happy thought all the time, but love is a game. You play your cards/assets (you're clothes, eyes, smile, figure, intelligence, etc.), put on your poker face, and see who's brave enough to match your bet. In high school with so much uncertainty surrounding your existence, purpose, and/or future, you're a much weaker player than most guys (since many of them don't give much thought to the future except to see which girls they can/will get). Women are greatly underestimated and many live up to their 'underestimations'. I hate this fact, but I see it so much. I AM NOT saying this is true for all young ladies, but it is true for many. If you want to succeed in life/love you have to learn to play the game and play it well.

Relationships are fun and the attention is awesome, but don't let the need/want for that attention change who you are!!! You have your whole life ahead of you. Don't let love/relationships interfere with your life goals/ambitions. If that relationship is meant to be IT WILL BE. Here's my quote of the day to live by: You is kind, you is smart, you is important!!- The Help

Who You Are- Jessie J
Who's Laughing Now- Jessie J
Perfect- Pink
Best Thing I Never Had- Beyonce
Single Ladies- Beyonce
Irreplaceable- Beyonce
Raining Men- Rihanna ft. Nicki Minaj
Fly- Nick Minaj ft. Rihanna
Take A Bow- Rihanna

*Disclaimer* Everything posted is my own personal opinion/experience. Nothing I have said is directed at anyone in particular. I love you all and wish only to help and advise.

If you have any songs you'd like to add to this advice post them below. Notice that the theme is female empowerment and surviving breakups/bad relationships.

♥ Valencia ♥

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The next installment of The Maze Runner is as great as the last maybe even better.

Thomas and the other Gladers have escaped the Maze. Now they are off to bed but their lives will soon turn into a nightmare... again. They thought this was it. Their rescue. But they wake up to bars covering where the windows were and people who can't really be called people, Cranks, are screaming like Banshees. This is the result of the Flare. People start to slowly lose their minds. The disease that everyone who went through the changing saw and feared.

Thomas screams out in his head for Teresa but she doesn't reply. Left in her place is a boy named Aris who was with a group of girls before and he has the uncanny ability to connect with Thomas's mind. This discovery comes as a shock to the Gladers but what did hey expect? It makes total sense that there is another group out there. And another twist to the plot is what's next to what was Teresa's door. The Betrayer. All of the boy's have something tattooed to the back of their necks. Thomas's is the most disheartening. I won't give it away. You'll never guess it. So now they are given a new mission. A new trial. Cross the Scorch, the most desolate part of the world, filled with Cranks and ungodly weather. I two weeks they must do this. What will happen with Teresa and the other group of Gladers? Will it ever end?

Fantastic sequel. I mean bravo! Thomas's neck and all the others... Teresa's too. Such a great plot twist. I really hated Teresa after this just to warn you. But maybe you unlike me have more compassion towards her. The two new arrivals, Jorge and Brenda, are the best additions possible. I kind of didn't like Jorge's hermano every time he talked. Kind of offended here but I got over it. I love how they are crazy. Brenda was interesting. Can you say love triangle? And then the end! THE END!!!! I love Dashner's endings. So many twists and turns... Aris was cool but he didn't seem to matter. Kind of in the background type of person. Nonetheless he still added something. The Scorch Trials do not disappoint. The Death Cure review coming soon. The end of the trilogy. So sad.

                                       Rating: 5 Stars

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Steel by Carrie Vaughn

I have never read a pirate're getting excited now aren't you? Yes, my friends I said a pirate book. And not just any pirate book (I don't think you can ever say that with a book like this but whatever) a pirate book with time travel.

Jill is a Fencer. Once she started she never looked back but now her resent loss is starting to get to her. Half a second. That's all it took. And she knows she shouldn't be moping especially while she's on vacation in the Caribbean but she can't stop thinking about it. She finally gives into her mother's persistence and joins her and the rest of her family on the beach. She takes a walk and seems to walk endlessly to a place that just illuminates peace and quiet. She just wants to leave. She doesn't want the pressure. And then that's when she feels something at her feet. It doesn't fell like a shell.... She leans down and picks up a rust covered sword. Not just any sword. A rapier. What her fencing originated out of. It must have been there for hundreds of years! She could give it to a museum... It's only part of a rapier but she still pockets it and before she knows it she's not on vacation. She is not with her family. There are a bunch of men who surround her. Big, burly men with gold piercings and menacing weapons. She's on a pirate ship. It's the rapier. She knows it. It's the key to getting her out of there but she doesn't know how. Maybe the Captain's the connection to it can lead her back home. Meanwhile she befriends another pirate her age with that has a sly grin on his face all the time. As well as discover adventure on the high seas and that maybe her life isn't as bad as she thought it was.

Well first of all it's a pirate book so I liked it instantly. I mean when do you get to read about pirates anymore? It completely entrapped me into their world and I loved every minute of it. Jill was a bit annoying sometimes. It was brief little moments. The whole pressure situation and seeing something that gives her a revelation that she could have it worse seemed kind of fake. Well... unnatural the way it was written. I did like her otherwise. She's got guts. I have a hard time believing the captain was so nice and she was a girl. I know there has been girl pirates and I should think this is all a good thing but it was still weird to me. I just didn't like how she was represented. It was a very interesting and fun book to read. I would have never thought I'd be reading a book about pirates or time travel. It was something completely new so I liked it for that. I'd like to read one now that had less back story. I just want pure adventure.

                                    Rating: 3 Stars 


Monday, January 23, 2012

Matched by Ally Condie

I've read some of the reviews of this book, and I can honestly say that with this type of book it doesn't matter where the author got the setting/government of the book it matters in the end the message trying to be conveyed! I don't know about you, but when I read a book I look for it's meaning. I look for the good in the story not reasons to complain. In some way/form/fashion every Dystopian world has some similarities. It doesn't matter how the author portrays it. The only thing that matters is the characters fighting for freedom and the revelations the character has along the path of gaining freedom.

Cassia is a girl who is basically going through the motions of life. In the beginning that is. She doesn't stand out. She doesn't have any super amazing skill. She's just....average. Until she has a reason to be anything but average. If everything seemed perfect to you what reason would you have to fight? It only takes one thing so perfect, wonderful, and beautiful in life to make you want to rebel and fight. When there's only one thing in life that you truly want but are unable to have, is when you will find the will to fight. And that is what happens to Cassia. She finds someone perfect, wonderful, and beautiful to her, but is denied her right to be with him. Yes Zander is perfect, kind, and handsome BUT he isn't right for her and she for him. The only reason that Zander is really hurt is because he has no reason to look for a deeper meaning behind their Match/love. I'm sure that if he looked he would find someone who holds his attraction like Cassia holds Ky's. I don't really see this book as having a love triangle, because everyone knows who has Cassia's heart right from the beginning. Zander is a wonderful friend. I could tell from the start that he wouldn't be anything more to her that a friend. The emotions and the intimacy just wasn't there. There was no growth in the relationship so I was fine with her falling for Ky. Ky has secrets. He had reasons to rebel, to fight. While Zander could possibly fight and cause changes, he was still no Ky. He lacked that passion.

I absolutely loved this story. I spoke volumes to me because it made me think of all the things in life that are set out for me to follow. Go to school. Get good grades. Go to college. Get a job. Get married. Tell my kids the same lines my parents told me. It's just a cycle. This book made me look past all that, and at everything beautiful in life. Everyone now a days is only concerned with politics, governments, tragedies, and the like. How many of you stop and look at the trees and flowers and imagine a world where everything is burned to the ground? How many of you like at a group of rebelling teens and imagine a world without opinions or voice or freedom to express yourself. How many of you writers/painters/musician can imagine a world without your art? This is what I thought about while reading this story. Yes there's a lot of bad in this world. BUT there is also a lot of good. No matter how bad this world gets, I would never trade my art or my independence. This book reminds me that it's the little things that matter in life. The little things that give us purpose.

Rating: 5 Stars

♥ Valencia ♥

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins

First of all there is no cat in this book so I don't know what's up with the cat in the cover. Maybe representing witchcraft? Weird.

Sophie Mercer is a witch. She's known since she was 12. 3 years ago. Her mother left her father after he confessed that he was a warlock and believing he was crazy left him but when Sophie was born she quickly learned the ways of magic and witchcraft. She is constantly worried about her and for good reason. She lived in 19 states in her short life. Finally she goes too far and her father sends her packing to Hecate Hall a.k.a. Hex Hall a boarding school for Prodigium. Prodigum are witches, faeries, and shapeshifters (not necessarily werewolves). All of the kids have been sent there on account of their bad behavior in the real world. Here at Hex Hall they will learn all about themselves and how to stop revealing their magic in front of "normal" people. And as our main character of course there comes trouble in the form of three other girl witches who claim she has great power like them and want her to join their coven. Her? A powerful witch? She's not powerful. She can't conjure any really great power and anyways it always goes wrong. These girls are particularly mean about it it too. But before that she met a smart alec boy who of course has to be totally hot and way out of her league. The type of boy every girl crushes on. And then she finds out that she's bunking with the school's outcast. The vampire who has been sent here because of a program kind of like a foreign exchange student. Oh yeah. A ghost likes to stare at her but no one else seems to see it. Will she be able to survive and fit in? For her sake she better hope so because something or someone dangerous is just lurking in the shadows having their eye on her.

Sophie's personality makes you like her instantly. I HEART witches so I'm glad her character was done right. The whole thing is kind of typical. The boy she cannot get and girls who just hate her guts. But it is also what makes it good. Going that way the author still was able to let me fall in love with the characters and the story. There are some interesting things that occur to her. The end was the most interesting of course making sure you want to read the next ones. I would have never expected it. I actually liked the love interest Archer especially since he wasn't that bad boy that I thought he was going to be. He was actually pretty sweet right away and very likable. So was Jenna the Vampire. You really felt sorry for her with all the things going on. You know I detect another love interest going on later in the books. See if you can guess who when you read it. It was a really good read and I'm pretty happy that I read it. I should be reading the others soon because honestly I haven't read a witch ya for awhile or a witch book in general and I couldn't put this one down so I'm going to grasp on that magic tightly. Here's me hoping that the others are as good as this one. Happy Reading!

P.S. I've noticed in the acknowledgement page in this one and maybe Hush, Hush that they thank authors. And basically the same authors I have read seem to be friends. Like she thanked Lindsey Leavitt- Sean Griswold's Head and Becca Fitzpatrick- Hush, Hush which I've both read and reviewed either here or somewhere else. Thought it was interesting and sweet.

                                    Rating: 4 stars


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Stardust by Neil Gaiman

Now I've seen the movie Stardust so I'll be comparing it to the book at the end. It's basically the same thing with some differences. Every nine years there is a market outside the city of Wall. The Wall is a farming town and there is an 18 year old boy named Tristran (I'm calling him Tristan from now on like the movie) who has a sister 6 months younger than him and unbeknownst to him his mother is not his mother. His father went to this same market 18 years ago and fell in love with a woman after a gentlemen agreed to pay him for letting him stay at his house. He gives him his heart's desire I think he calls it for him and his child. His father never told him this and he has never thought to question it. His "mother" always stares at him oddly but he doesn't know why. He's fallen in love with Victoria Forester who every boy or man even has too. He will give her anything and then he promises her a fallen star that he sees. She just laughs at him but he sets out in search for the star. And when he finds it to his surprise it is not a clump of rock but a girl who is the star and so he and she set about to go to his home to his city of Wall to show her to his one true love. Unfortunately for him the star called Yvaine doesn't take to kindly to this and with her broken leg and her ever present foul mood it is hard for him to take her there. Add that to the princes of Stromhold who are chasing after because what made her fall, a topaz necklace, is the key to them being named king. Also, there are a couple of witches that want her heart to make them younger. All in all it's going to be one crazy adventure.

So I loved this movie. It was a sweet tale of love and magic. I'm glad they changed his name to Tristan in because Tristran was utterly annoying me. The name not the person. The movie was more light and funny. It was more of a family movie maybe not for the young ones though. This one has a little bit of something so I wouldn't recommend it for younger teenagers. It was pretty amusing how Tristan had one pointy ear like his mother. His mother had cat ears which you didn't see in the movie. The book and the movie had the same back story but the book of course had a little more background. The difference is the comedy of it and a little of the ending. The book didn't show that much love between the two. I mean you couldn't see it blossom. That's what I really wanted. It didn't seem much of a relationship. The writing was whimsical but it lacked what the movie could give. I still liked it but the movie was better. I have to watch it now!

                                       Rating: 3 Stars

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

This is a book I never wanted to read. That seems to be a pattern... It does start off slow for me when I read it last Summer at least. Most likely more for me because I was reluctant to read it. I mean. A book about a boy running in a maze... not that interesting. But of course it's more than that. It's kind of like The Lord of the Flies or so I'm told it is. There's a group of boys about 50 of them living in a maze with monsters all around they named The Grievers. They are part animal and part machine. Just looking at them will make a shiver go down your spine. These boys have been living two years in what they call The Glade. It's like a perfect square in the middle of the maze where they farm, raise crops, and it's basically there safe haven. There are doors around The Glade to go to the maze. They close when it gets dark. Here comes Thomas. He is experiencing what everyone has. Being boxed in and terrified before being introduced to his new home knowing only one thing about himself. His name. Thomas comes in and after a little while something starts feeling familiar. It's like he's been here before. He wants to become a Runner. It's like there's an imaginary string pulling him to want to be one. A Runner is a person who goes out into the maze trying to find an escape by mapping the whole area. They need to be quick, tough, a decision maker, smart, and of course they must be athletic. They are the best of the best and he wants in.

The next day after he arrives a girl arrives which has never happened before. Not only was she there a month early but she's a girl! The Glade is only filled with boys. She has paper in her hands saying something like it'll all end soon. Now everyone is looking at Thomas wondering what he knows but he can't say that this place feels familiar he'll sure to be in trouble after that. But what gets him is that the girl feels familiar too. He doesn't know what's going on. He just wants to escape. He just wants his memory back like everyone else. He didn't mean to trigger the end.

This book is pure awesomeness. I absolutely love Thomas. He was one of my favorite male main characters in 2011. You just fall in love... *clears throat* Well, he is awesome. Chuck on the other hand annoyed the crap out of me. I don't know how Thomas liked him. He was his only friend in the beginning so I'll let it slide. It might have also been because he resonated home or something... but whatever. He still annoyed me and creeped me out. I loved Newt as well. What with his bum leg it didn't matter. He was still tough and he cared about Thomas. I remember reading this the first time around. The twists that I never saw coming. My mouth hanging open all the time. There is sadness also which is expected. They are a bunch of kids fending for themselves. But let me tell YOU. This trilogy only gets better. I've just read The Scorch Trials being that way. I have yet to read The Death Cure and I can't wait. It'll be a glorious finale. Too bad though. I'll miss Thomas.
                                        Rating: 5 Stars

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sean Griswold's Head by Linsey Leavitt

Hey guys! This being my first post on here I just want to say hope you guys enjoy them. Some books I've reviewed earlier so this is why this one may sound weird.

Payton Gritas has been clueless of her father's MS until one startling discovery of her mother putting a needle in her father's butt. Yeah. Awkward. 6 months of lying by not only her parents but her brothers too. Did they not think she could handle it? Furious she stops speaking with them. Two weeks later she's in the counselor's office after her parents scheduled a meeting for her. Now she must get advice on dealing with her father's disease from a woman that dresses sporadically and probably has never seen a file in her life. She suggests getting a Focus Object so she can focus her emotions and be able to deal with her dad's MS. She hasn't been very organized or even focused so when she remembers she has a meeting after this periods over she looks around for one. She goes over some inanimate objects but she wants something that changes and that's when she sets her eyes on the back of Sean Griswold's head. It's perfect! Jac is there too helping her with being a "Research Analyst" by getting to know more about the man behind the head. But what follows is pretty unexpected. She's starting to get a crush on someone who was just to be her focus. You knew that was going to happen didn't you?

First book of the New Year! I've been wanting to read this book for a little over a year so I was pretty happy when I got it for Christmas. It wasn't what I expected. It made me go back in forth with what I believed the story was like. For instance Sean himself. Midway I thought he wasn't what the book is focusing on. He didn't seem necessary anymore. By the end I was like okay he's okay. Not that I didn't like him I just thought the whole story should become bigger than that and it did. With his introduction to biking for her and her friend telling her she was selfish. It played out well and really made me want to bike or exercise at least. But that isn't the main thing. She goes with the lie that her parents lying to her for 6 months was the reason she was so angry but it turned out to be more than that. The beginning was hard to get into because I don't know... she sounded conceited? But, I did end up liking it. In its own way it was a really good story. I also really liked Jac. Even though I would want to kill her too her pushing showed she cares. It was a sweet unassuming book. Here's something that I think fits just right for this review. I's between her and her best friend Jac bu it's basically Jac:

"Are you serious? My dad has a disease--" "Oh, boo freaking hoo. At least he' still around! Jac cries, her cheeks wet with tears. "You want some professional advice? You have the most perfect life and you can't even see it. A friend who goes out of her way to help.Parents who love you and worry about you and book counseling sessions for you. You have it so good, you have to create drama. Walking around wearing your dad's T-shirt like he's dead.He's not going to die, Payton. He's right there. He's right there and you're acting like he's already gone."

Yeah it's a good moment Also, if you like Seinfeld you might like this book. It was weird them knowing the episode numbers but whatever. I'm glad that I know Seinfeld As you can tell I did like this book and do think you should read it.
                                                Rating: 4 stars

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Welcome all to the new Young Adult Enthusiasts blog!!  We are a group from who love to read, comment, discuss, and discover new and old books. We welcome all ages, races, ethnicities, and opinions because we are a family with a love of reading!! On this site you can find great reviews, recommendations, advice columns, and even a few polls/tourneys. Stick around for lots more to come!!!!