Saturday, June 24, 2017

THE MEMORY OF LIGHT BY FRANCISCO X. STORK - BOOK REVIEW

This book was a lot to take in. It was unapologetic and heavy in every way imaginable.

Friday, June 23, 2017

THE DEVIL YOU KNOW BY TRISH DOLLER - BOOK REVIEW

Despite the mixed reviews I've seen with this one, this book was exactly what I was looking for right now and I devoured it!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI BY SANDHYA MENON - BOOK REVIEW

This book was so cute. It was one of my most anticipated reads of the year, and I am happy to say it definitely lived up to my expectations and the hype!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

THE CATCHER IN THE RYE BY J.D. SALINGER - BOOK REVIEW

Before I go into this review, I just want to say that I thought this book and I would jive. I didn't know a lot about it, but I knew that Holden was an unlikable MC, I knew he was basically talking to a bench (still not 100% on that one), and I knew that people either loved it or hated it. With these things in mind, I had so much higher expectations.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

ALL THE RAGE BY COURTNEY SUMMERS - BOOK REVIEW

Wow, this book. I had heard some amazing things about it but I didn't really know what I was getting into. Also, this book and review include trigger warnings for rape and sexual assault, please proceed with caution.

Monday, June 19, 2017

SUICIDE NOTES FROM BEAUTIFUL GIRLS BY LYNN WEINGARTEN - BOOK REVIEW

Well, I don't quite know what I was expecting going into this book, but it wasn't what I got.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

CHAIN REACTION BY SIMONE ELKELES - BOOK REVIEW

Well, that is the end of the Perfect Chemistry series. And I kinda feel let down, to be honest.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

RULES OF ATTRACTION BY SIMONE ELKELES - BOOK REVIEW

It's been a good minute since I read the first book in this companion series. I forgot how much I guilty-pleasure loved these books.

Friday, June 16, 2017

AND THE MOUNTAINS ECHOED BY KHALED HOSSEINI - BOOK REVIEW

To complete my Hosseini mini-marathon, I picked up his latest novel. While The Kite Runner will always hold a special place in my heart, I think ATME might be a close second.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS BY KHALED HOSSEINI - BOOK REVIEW

Going into this book only having read Hosseini's debut novel, The Kite Runner, I kind of knew what I was getting myself into. But I don't think I properly prepared myself for this book.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

WHAT WE SAW BY AARON HARTZLER - BOOK REVIEW

Going into this book, I knew it was going to be hard. This book and review include trigger warnings for rape and sexual assault, please proceed with caution.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

INTO THE WATER BY PAULA HAWKINS - BOOK REVIEW

I was pleasantly surprised with the latest book from Hawkins, especially after the event that was The Girl on the Train.

Monday, June 5, 2017

OUR LITTLE SECRET BY ROZ NAY - BOOK REVIEW


Hello everyone!

I am so excited to share my review of this book with you today, it is Our Little Secret by Roz Nay. Thanks so much to Simon and Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy of this book for an honest review. As always, all opinions are my own.


This story follows Angela, a woman who is brought into the police station for questioning after the disappearance of her ex, HP's wife, Saskia. During the interrogation, Angela delves back 10 years ago when she and HP first met and started dating. The story of their past develops, they fell in love, she moved to England for school and on a visit, he met Saskia, who is from Australia. The pair moves to Australia for a little bit but they soon announce their engagement and move back to the small town HP and Angela grew up in after the wedding.

As the story progressed, I didn't really know where it was heading. Angela was in for questioning, so obviously, they suspected she had something to do with Saskia's disappearance and possible murder. But as she told the story, I became less and less convinced that she had anything to do with it. Sure, she was a little over-attached, but I don't think she had it in her to do something to Saskia.

I really enjoyed the writing style of this book, Nay does a great job of creating a story that is completely engrossing. Despite the fact that Angela was telling the story to the detective, it felt as though we were getting the story first hand. The writing manipulates you into believing everything Angela says, regardless of its validity. There were a couple of times where I stopped and questioned because we were only getting Angela's side of the story, but I took her word because she felt so real and pessimistic. There was just something in the way she looked at the world that made me believe her because she just got it. The world isn't all sunshine and rainbows and she understood that.

I think Angela was a really interesting character, a product of both her parents' high expectations and quirky parenting style and the experiences in her life generally. It has been a long time since I've read such a messed up character whom I've loved. Probably not since Joe in You by Caroline Kepnes. They are both such charismatic, real characters that, despite their dark outlook on life, you find appealing.

The only thing that is holding me back from giving this book a full five stars is the ending. I felt like there were some loose ends that weren't really tied up with other characters who, while not super integral to the story, came up often enough that I would have liked to see more there. I also felt like while we find out what happened to Saskia, there is just a bit missing there. Perhaps under further reflection, I will be able to accept the ending for what it is.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I think it will be a great thriller for the summer!


Saturday, June 3, 2017

LIGHT OF DAY BY ALLISON VAN DIEPEN - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Light of Day by Allison van Diepen.


Well, I'm not sure this one was as good as the first book in the series...

This book is a companion novel to On the Edge and follows a new couple, Gabby and X. One night, after sneaking into a club, Gabby and her friend Maria narrowly escape their drugged drinks after a stranger warns them. Gabby soon finds out that the man who tried to drug them was going to kidnap them and force them into prostitution. Things pretty much go back to normal until Gabby's ex-friend Bree doesn't come home from a party one night.

Like I mentioned earlier, this novel is part of a series of companion novels, so it is set in Miami like book one and involves the Destinos gang, human trafficking rings, etc. like the first one. There are a couple of character cameos in this one which was fun to see after reading book one. I do think you have to read this series in order, though, because there are spoilers for Maddie and Lobo's story in this book.

This book had all the elements that I enjoyed in the first book so I'm not too sure why it didn't click as much as the first one did. I can't quite pinpoint it, but there was something that made me not love this book as much as I could have.

It may be because the romance, a major part of this book, didn't jive with me. I felt like it was a little bit forced. Obviously, the stranger who saves them at the bar is superattractive and there's bound to be a connection but I just felt like I didn't want a romance. I'm not necessarily blaming the book for that, I think it's just where I am right now with the books I've been reading. I thought X was hot and cold, understandable but still annoying, and Gabby seemed to be doing just fine on her own.

I wished there was a bit more of the family dynamic in this one, I think there was a greater opportunity to delve into both character's family/backstory a bit more and I would have enjoyed that.

The pacing in this book was good, it was a quick read. I think some parts dragged a bit, and I felt like van Diepen couldn't decide whether to stick with the high school drama or the gang drama. There's a mix, but the transitions between the two felt jarring like one second Gabby was out with her friends and the next she dropped everything to run to X and help him. I felt like that aspect could have been re-worked a bit.

There were a couple times when I couldn't believe how reckless Gabby was. For the most part, I didn't mind her character but every once in a while she would do something rash and I was left wondering if she even thought it through. I knew right away at the major conflict towards the end that something didn't feel right but she was too set on helping out to stop and make a plan.

Overall, I wanted to enjoy this book so much more than I did. I still have hopes for the series and am planning on picking up book three soon.

Friday, June 2, 2017

LAST YEAR'S MISTAKE BY GINA CIOCCA - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Last Year's Mistake by Gina Ciocca.


I think I'm outgrowing YA. Or, at least, high school drama YA.

This book follows Kelsey, a senior in high school who, after moving a year ago, finally has the life she dreamed of, adoring boyfriend, Ryan, tight (do people still say tight? I feel so old after reading this book) best friend, Candy, etc. Then one day, her old best friend, David, rolls into to town and back into Kelsey's life. Cue boy drama, friend drama, etc.

I really want to stress that the way I am feeling right now, about this book, about the school setting it has, the writing, all that is not bad. I just think I'm over it. Stories set primarily in schools have never really been my favourite and I find that as I get older, even though I'm only in university, I just don't find these types of books as appealing anymore. So a lot of my negativity in this review stems from that, not the book itself.

Character-wise, this book was okay. Kelsey didn't blow me away as an MC but she wasn't too terrible. There were a couple of times when I thought she was a little bit annoying, but not enough to completely ruin the book. Ryan, her boyfriend was a bit of a jerk. But she stuck with him, hurray! Seriously though, there were times when I felt like Ciocca was setting Ryan up to be the biggest jerk so that when Kelsey inevitably got together with David, we wouldn't feel too bad for him. David wasn't anything special either. I felt like we didn't get to know him until closer to the end of the book and by then I didn't really care too much about him.

I also think that the "night a misunderstanding turned Kelsey into the school joke" situation was so pointless. The only real value I see in it is to show what NOT to do in that situation. But when I read that in the synopsis, I thought a million different things that weren't what it actually was. It wasn't what it looked like and anyone with half a brain would have figured that out. But alas, we needed some petty high school drama.

My other issue with this book is that the central romance is basically built on the idea of a sort of star-crossed, best friends but ripped away before anything could blossom situation. There was zero chemistry in either of Kelsey's relationships and I felt like the only reason she and David liked each other was because they were in the right place at the right time when they met. I bet you any amount of money that if Kelsey's sister was hit with that baseball or any other girl for that matter, he would have been head over heels for her.

I will say that Ciocca's writing style is really good. She was able to flow between the two timelines, the summers when Kelsey and David met, and senior year "present" day. I think that was the only reason I was able to get through the book.

Overall, I wasn't a fan but if you are into slightly cheesy, slightly annoying high school dramas, here you go.


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

CUT ME FREE BY J.R. JOHANSSON - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Cut Me Free by J.R. Johansson.



I don't really know what I expected with this book, but what I got was so much more horrific and terrifying.

The story follows 17-year-old Charlotte who has recently escaped her abusive parents. Her little brother, Sam, however, wasn't as lucky. His death was one of the reasons that pushed Charlotte to try to escape. Now she is living in a bigger city with a new identity thanks to Cam, a teen who has connections in the Mafia, and a new home. One day while she is out, she spots a little girl with bruises and burn marks, being practically dragged by a man. Unable to ignore the obvious signs of abuse, Charlotte decides she needs to save the girl. However, soon Charlotte begins to find threatening packages left in her apartment addressed to her old name, Piper and has no idea who is leaving them.

Firstly, this was an extremely difficult book to read. Charlotte has nightmares and flashbacks to her life with her parents and they are pretty intense. Child abuse is horrific in any instance, but reading it firsthand through Charlotte was nauseating. Then, when Charlotte finds the little girl, your already broken heart absolutely shatters.

I'm not sure that Charlotte's abuse is discussed as much as it could have been. It definitely has a major impact on her life, but sometimes I forgot about it and had to remind myself that this wasn't just a thriller, that there was more to the story.

Johansson does a spectacular job of writing this story. She is able to evoke real emotions in the reader, not just sadness and anger but also terror. I don't think I can recall any book where I was genuinely afraid but there were a couple of scenes in this book that made me terrified. This book deals with something that a lot of books don't, it's not a widely discussed topic and Johansson is able to portray all the emotions the characters are going through and makes the reader feel them as well.

This book also has a bit of a thriller component, with the packages in the apartment. I had no idea what was going on with that, I mean I had a few guesses as to who was behind it but I would never have guessed it. I think Johansson does the thriller aspects well and I think that she wove it well with the story of abuse.

I didn't love the romance elements between Cam and Charlotte. I felt like the story didn't need it - and I didn't really want it. I went for this book for the horror/thriller not the romance. That being said, I am glad there was a little light in this story, especially for Charlotte who has been through so much already. Cam is sweet and wants to help Charlotte but there were a couple times where he just wouldn't mind his own business!

I don't know if I connected with Charlotte as well as I could have or would have if this was a different book. I think that's okay though because this isn't the kind of book where you need to like the character or connect with the character to understand what they are going through. I don't think I could tell you who Charlotte really is, but I feel like that's not really a problem in this book because there is so much else to worry about.

Overall, I read it in 2 hours and highly recommend if you are looking for a scary read!


Monday, May 29, 2017

THIS IS WHERE THE WORLD ENDS BY AMY ZHANG - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, This Is Where The World Ends by Amy Zhang.


This book won't be for everyone. I wasn't sure it was going to be for me for a bit, but then I started to love it.

The story follows the perspectives of Micah and Janie. They're best friends who don't associate with each other in public but behind the scenes they are partners in crime, bringing good things to good people and forcing karma on those who've done wrong. Life is going pretty good until Micah wakes up in the hospital with no memory of what happened before. He soon finds out there was a bonfire at Janie's house, he was there and no one will tell him where Janie is.

This book is told in a non-linear way. The After chapters are in Micah's perspective where he tries to piece together what happened and is sprinkled with glimpses of the past. The Before chapters are in Janie's perspective and tell the story of what happened leading up to the night of the bonfire, filling in the gaps of Micah's memory. Like with Zhang's debut novel, Falling into Place, I really enjoyed the writing style. I know for some it is all over the place but I liked the way she worked to slowly put the pieces together.

It doesn't take a genius to see the toxicity in Micah and Janie's relationship but the way Zhang writes the nuances of it create a setting where you can't always see the lines of this toxicity. I mean, they don't interact in public, but they are always there for each other, no matter what. This depiction of a toxic relationship shows that the poison isn't always so easy to see but can still be just as effective.

Character-wise, I liked both characters. Micah was a good character, I don't know if I would really say he was a super dynamic character, I'm not sure I know him, but I did like how Zhang portrayed him most of the time. I did, however, really like Janie. She was just on the cusp of a manic-pixie-dream-girl but without pushing it over the line. She was very pessimistic, but I think that was why I related to her so well. She loves fairy tales and make-believe but at the end of the day, she is a straight shooter. I really appreciated how Zhang would bring her character to the edge but didn't push her over the extreme.

I absolutely loved the way Zhang played with fairy tales in this book. At first, Janie wrote her life as a fairy tale, broken down to what happened in perhaps a not so happily ever after way. But then as the book progressed, Janie begins to write the fairy tales as they would have happened in modern day. If the prince didn't make it to the princess in time, if the mermaid drowned, if the fairy tale ended differently. These little snippets throughout the story were great additions and I thought Zhang worked them in wonderfully.

My only complaint about this book is that it's not really about the apocalypse. I mean it's kind of about the end of the world in some aspects but it's about the end of the character's worlds.

Overall, despite the other negative reviews on this one, I loved it and highly recommend.


Saturday, May 27, 2017

ASYLUM BY MADELEINE ROUX - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Asylum by Madeleine Roux.



I've been putting this book off for two reasons: 1) the horror genre is a bit outside my comfort zone, and 2) I was a little bit nervous about the pictures, especially because of the horror genre.

But, I finally decided to pick it up and I'm not sure how I feel.

The story follows 16 year-old-year Dan who is away at a college prep class. He arrives to find a strange roommate in his asylum turned dorm. Then things start happening. Creepy notes get left in his room even though he's sure he locked the door. Pictures left with eyes scratched out. He begins to explore the locked, off-limits portion of the building with his new friends Jordan and Abby.

First off, when I started the book, I immediately thought of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. The layout was very similar, the chapter header on a separate page, the cursive first letter, etc. And that's not a bad thing, it's just a formatting thing and truthfully, I'm not sure which book was formatted first.

Story-wise, it was fairly interesting. I liked the mystery aspect of the story, finding out who was behind everything. But I didn't really understand the big reveal at the end. How was that even possible? I feel like I missed a part of the story where things were explained.

The pacing was good, I flew through this book. I'm not sure if it was a combination of the writing style, the large font size and the pictures on every other page.

I didn't love the narration though and I think that messed things up for me. It's told in third-person so there is already some disconnect with the story. And then, I wasn't really a fan of Dan's internal voice. He felt really young to me and his voice kind of irritated me. The narration felt like it was coming from a middle-grade character, not a higher aged YA.

I felt like the relationship between Dan and Abby was kind of pointless. I mean it didn't really add to the story at all and they didn't even acknowledge the situation. There were just some awkward comments that were random. I also felt that their characters were lacking. I don't know if I could tell you one dynamic detail that is specific to each of the characters. They felt so flat that there were times when I could only tell them apart by their cliches, awkward super-student = Dan, quirky, artsy girl = Abby, moody jerk = Jordan.

I'm not too sure what else to say about this book. I definitely didn't love it, but at the same time, it was interesting enough to finish it. It wasn't as scary as I thought it would be. In fact, I only got genuinely scared two or three times, all those times it was just a quick thing that got resolved on the next page. The book had a lingering creepiness, but it didn't constantly scare me.

I was expecting a lot more from this book and unfortunately, it didn't deliver as well as I had hoped.

Overall, I don't think it is worth the read.


Friday, May 26, 2017

THE MYSTERY OF HOLLOW PLACES BY REBECCA PODOS - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, The Mystery of Hollow Places by Rebecca Podos.


I think I've found a new favourite book, this one very pleasantly surprised me!

The story follows Imogene, a high school senior whose mother, Sidonie, left when she was a baby. She doesn't know anything about her, except for what her father has told her. Now her father is missing and she and her stepmom are trying desperately to find him. Imogene believes that the only place he would have gone was to find Sidonie. Now she just has to find her dad and maybe meet her mom for the first time since she was a baby.

I think what I loved most about this story was its originality. I was expecting some run-of-the-mill mystery but I got something much more than that. Sure the story is about Imogene finding her parents, but it's also about her finding herself and recognizing the family she does have.

I think Podos did a great job of making the story realistic. There were times when Imogene was off doing something she probably shouldn't have been and she was punished. Her parents or at least her stepmom was around and actually part of her life. There were times when Imogene drew attention to the fact that she was just a teenager playing the role of Sherlock. There was never a moment where things turned unrealistic because Imogene was quick to point out the differences between real life and the mystery novels she loves.

I also really loved Imogene's voice. The story is told in her perspective and I think she is one of the best narrators in my recent memory. She was very aware of what was going on and was quick to call out herself when she was wrong. Her relationship with her friend Jessa was sweet and once again realistic. There were moments where things didn't go as planned and they had fights but they made it through.

Podos also does a good job of keeping the story on track. There are hints of possible romantic connections with Imogene and Jessa's older brother Chad but nothing really comes of it and it certainly doesn't take over the whole book.

The pacing and writing of this book were fantastic, it drew me in from the very beginning and couldn't put it down. I was so enthralled in the story and I had to see where it was going. It wasn't even so much the mystery of finding Imogene's dad or mom that kept me reading but Imogene's narration and journey. I didn't want to miss a second.

This book is for those of us who loved mysteries growing up, whether it was The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes or the Nancy Drew series. It's a modern-day detective story about life and family. It's not a fast-paced page-turner, but so much deeper and better than that. In some ways, I feel like this book was written just for me, I'm not sure why, but I think that's why I loved it so much. It was the book I've been waiting for.

I adored this book and hope you do too.

Overall, highly recommend this one and am hotly anticipating anything else by this author.


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

UNDERNEATH EVERYTHING BY MARCY BELLER PAUL - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back today with another book review, Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul.


This is one of those books where I can't remember why I decided I wanted to read it, I just knew I did at some point because I bought a copy.

The story follows Mattie, a girl who is in high school. Mattie and her friend Kris haven't associated with the other half of their friend group in a year and a half because of some event that happened. I can't really tell you too much more about the plot because there isn't really a lot more plot. That's pretty much it.

I had a few problems with this book, so I guess, based on the reviews, I am on the side of the fence that wasn't a huge fan.

My first issue was that I couldn't really get into this book. It took a good 100 pages (a little too much in a <300-page book) for me to actually want to continue reading. I almost DNF'd this book multiple times in the first little bit because I wasn't enjoying it. Now, there are a few reasons for this: I'm fighting off a slump, so that doesn't help matters and because this book is fairly split when it comes to people loving it or not being a fan, I tend to stay on the pessimistic side of things. I'm not sure if it was the book itself, the writing, story, etc. or if it was me, but I had a difficult time getting into this book.

Once I did get into it, I felt like there wasn't a lot going on. Like I said before, there isn't really much going on in terms of plot. It's just kind of Mattie's life these days and a couple flashbacks to the event that ruined it all. I almost preferred reading the flashback memories and I wish that was more of the book. There were a couple of times where I felt like I just walked into the middle of a story - references made to the event but no one was telling me what had happened. I understand the effect it was supposed to have, but I just didn't enjoy it.

I did really enjoy the interactions with Jolene and Mattie - they were creepy and showed an interesting toxic friendship dynamic. I just wish there was more of that. When we see their present-day interactions, most of those interactions are gone, both girls have become different people.

I feel like I would have preferred the original story, not the recap, 2 years later situation. It almost felt unnecessary to have this secondary telling of that story and I think I am missing the purpose as to why that was done.

Overall, I can see why people like this book and I can see why people aren't huge fans. I do think, however, if you can power through the first bit, the story picks up and you'll have a better chance at enjoying it.


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

THE HATE U GIVE BY ANGIE THOMAS - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with a fairly short review today for The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.


This book was phenomenal.

I'm going to keep this review super short because I think you should read the book, not my review, to get the full message.

The story follows 16-year-old Starr who has just witnessed a police officer murder of one of her friends after they were leaving a party. This book is inspired by the Black Lives Matter Movement, but it is so much more than that. There is love, hate, family, friendship, racism, police brutality, the list goes on.

This book provided such an eye-opening experience for me. Sometimes it is hard to put yourself in other people's shoes, especially when their world and life seems so different from your own. But Thomas does a fantastic job of laying it all out. She presents both sides of every story: the police officer's interpretation of the situation vs. Starr's first-hand account; Starr's uncle and aunt who are considered rich vs. Starr's family, more on the poor side; Starr's uncle Carlos, a black cop who is enraged that a fellow officer pulled a gun on two unarmed teens vs. Officer Cruise, a white cop who some say was just doing his job.

Throughout this book, Thomas doesn't get preachy, she doesn't tell you how to live your life or how to treat others, she just gives a much-needed voice that shows how the situation COULD be handled. She presents the details of this story so that even those who don't see the divisions of society are left with a new perspective and an open mind.

I think that is all I want to say about this book, and I highly recommend you pick it up as well.


Monday, May 22, 2017

JOYRIDE BY ANNA BANKS - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Joyride by Anna Banks.


I'll give the book this, it sounded interesting.

The story follows 16-year-old Carly, an American-born Mexican who, with the help of her older brother, is trying to smuggle her recently deported parents back into the US. One night while working the graveyard shift at a convenience store, Carly meets Arden, the sheriff's son and last person she wants to associate with. Arden eventually convinces Carly to become his accomplice in his pranks but the two soon realize that being the sheriff's son has benefits that don't extend to Carly. In fact, Arden's dad's re-election campaign is centered around tightening restrictions on undocumented immigrants.

I'm so torn because I really enjoyed the storyline of this book - I haven't had the chance to read a lot of books on undocumented immigrants and deportation, the only other one I can think of being The Sun Is Also a Star - so I was really invested in Carly's story. But I just found some parts were slow and not really as enthralling as the title seems to suggest.

Firstly, I want to preface this review by saying that I am not an immigrant. I am not the child of immigrants. I will never know, on a first-hand basis, what the situation like what Carly's family goes through will feel like. Any analysis on that topic that I give should be taken with a grain of salt, as I am not the best person to verify the situation.

I will say, however, that the story Banks writes seems very plausible and remains heartbreaking. I cannot even imagine what she is going through. It's books like these that really put my own life into perspective and show that no matter how bad things get, they could always be worse.

In terms of characters, I really liked both Carly and Arden. I'm kind of sick and tired of the womanizing jock trope and while Banks shows that Arden is not that fairly quickly, I just felt like that cliche wasn't necessary to enhance the story. Carly is strong and smart. She knew her situation and the cards stacked against her but she didn't let that get in her way. I will say there were a few times where she just kind of went along with Arden's pranks even though she knew they might get caught. Part of me thinks she was reckless, but then the other part of me thinks that she shouldn't have to worry about what happens if they get caught.

I think aside from the obviously horrible situation I didn't really feel anything in this book. The romance was lukewarm for me, it seemed a little too insta-lovey and convenient for my tastes and I never really felt the spark between the two. I think this might be the biggest fault of this book, at the end, I just feel meh because of that ending.

Overall, the storyline of this book was really great but I just felt like the execution was a little lacking.


Saturday, May 20, 2017

DEAD GIRLS SOCIETY BY MICHELLE KRYS - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Dead Girls Society by Michelle Krys.


This book was so much more intense than I thought it was going to be and I flew through it!

The story follows Hope, a teen who is living with cystic fibrosis. She's been in and out of school with treatments and one day, she wakes up to an email from an unknown sender inviting her to a meeting at an abandoned warehouse at midnight. Obviously, Hope is skeptical but she convinces herself to go. There she meets four other girls who were all invited and they are told they must complete a series of dares in order to be the lone winner and receive a prize of $100,000. The girls are skeptical, but they've all been blackmailed and are forced to participate.

Krys sets the story up in such a way that looks at the absurdity of the situation and pokes fun at it. There are references to how it is like a cheap horror movie but the book is still good in spite itself.

The writing style of this book was really interesting, the chapters were written in such a way that let me stay interested in the story without wrapping up sections too soon. The pacing was really well done - we got right into the mystery and dares from the first chapter, there was no waiting around. That being said, there was still a lot of build up to the reveal of who was behind everything. There were a lot of red herrings and it got to the point where there was no one you seemed to be able to trust.

There was a bit of romance in this book but it wasn't really made a major focus, and rightfully so. Things moved a little fast, making it unrealistic and clear that it wouldn't last long. Looking back, there are a lot of little things Krys set up to lead to the conclusion without really knowing.

I'm not personally familiar with CF myself but I think Krys did a lot of research on the topic and portrayed Hope's disease well. There were points where Krys's writing style was able to create a story that engrossed me so much I felt as though I was in Hope's shoes, that I was having trouble breathing, the things that happened to her were happening to me. There was one part in particular that I felt like was happening to me and I was taken aback by Krys's writing.

This book had a The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer vibe (the first two books, not that horrendous third) as well as a little bit of The Accident Season. I wouldn't say that Hope was an unreliable narrator, but I just got similar vibes with these books.

I also think that Krys used the book's setting very well. A lot of the time, a book is set somewhere but there is no real interaction with the setting - it could be set anywhere. But Krys used the New Orleans backdrop throughout the book in interesting ways, starting from the street music on the very first page. I honestly can't remember the last time I was so aware of where a book was taking place while reading it.

I want to talk briefly about the ending; some people are saying it's a cliffhanger. Personally, I like how things ended. Pretty much everything is wrapped up or assumed to be wrapped up and there's one little detail that is added to make it seem like the story isn't over quite yet. I am fine with how things ended, that detail doesn't bother me that much. It does leave this book open to a sequel which, for the record, I would totally be down for.

I think I liked this book so much because I went in with zero expectations. I see a lot of mixed reviews and I think if you go in not knowing much and not expecting much, you will be happy with the story.

Overall, a new favourite for me - highly recommend!