Fourth Comings by Megan McCafferty

199686Title: Fourth Comings
Author: Megan McCafferty
Series: Jessica Darling
Previous Books in the Series: 
1. Sloppy Firsts
2. Second Helpings
3. Charmed Thirds
Date Started: April 24
Date Finished: April 25
Format: Paperback from my shelf

At first it seems that she’s living the elusive New York City dream. She’s subletting an apartment with her best friend, Hope, working for a magazine that actually utilizes her psychology degree, and still deeply in love with Marcus Flutie, the charismatic addict-turned-Buddhist who first captivated her at sixteen.

Of course, reality is more complicated than dreamy clichés. She and Hope share bunk beds in the “Cupcake”—the girlie pastel bedroom normally occupied by twelve-year-old twins. Their Brooklyn neighborhood is better suited to “breeders,” and she and Hope split the rent with their promiscuous high school pal, Manda, and her “genderqueer boifriend.” Freelancing for an obscure journal can’t put a dent in Jessica’s student loans, so she’s eking out a living by babysitting her young niece and lamenting that she, unlike most of her friends, can’t postpone adulthood by going back to school. Yet it’s the ever-changing relationship with Marcus that leaves her most unsettled. At the ripe age of twenty-three, he’s just starting his freshman year at Princeton University. Is she ready to give up her imperfect yet invigorating post-college life just because her on-again/off-again soul mate asks her to… marry him?

Jessica has one week to respond to Marcus’s perplexing marriage proposal. During this time, she gains surprising wisdom from unexpected sources, including a popular talk show shrink, a drag queen named Royalle G. Biv, and yes, even her parents. But the most shocking confession concerns two people she thought had nothing to hide: Hope and Marcus. Will this knowledge inspire Jessica to give up a world of late-night literary soirees, art openings, and downtown drunken karaoke to move back to New Jersey and be with the one man who’s gripped her heart for years? Jessica ponders this and other life choices with her signature snark and hyper-intense insight, making it the most tumultuous and memorable week of her twenty-something life.

As much as I have loved books 1, 2 and even 3 of this series, I have to admit that four is a little bit out there. For one thing, it starts off weird. I thought for sure that we were getting things from Marcus’s POV and to find out that it’s actually Jessica’s POV as she writes a journal for Marcus kind of blew my mind. Once I got used to that idea, the next thing that is weird is Marcus and Jessica themselves. Apparently they aren’t happy together anymore and they both want different things from life. At first I’m a little bit miffed because here’s a couple that has literally fought to be together for over 600 pages by this point and they still can’t get their acts together? But then Marcus proposes and things get all turned upside down.

As with Charmed Thirds, I’m glad I read Fourth Comings now instead of when it originally came out. I get where Jessica is coming from. That post-graduation what the hell do I do with my life and degree now? phase is pretty much a given for most college grads. God knows I went through it until I got my part-time job a year and five months after I graduated. But to have that phase and then also try to figure out whether or not you want to marry the love of your life, when you don’t believe in marriage? I could not handle that. And despite the fact that I ship Marcus and Jessica together I kind of get why she said no.

Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. So as weird as this book was, I still think it was rather brilliant. It’s not Jessica really moaning about how life is unfair. She’s starting to realize that she has a lot of opportunities afforded to her and that might take her down some unknown paths. I’m curious to see where this leads her in book 5.

Bookshelf worthy? Support your local library!

Posted in Book Reviews, Contemporary, Jessica Darling series, Megan McCafferty, Romance, Young Adult Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

5139zwihtyl-_sx329_bo1204203200_Title: The Upside of Unrequited
Author: Becky Albertalli
Date Started: April 21
Date Finished: April 22
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful. Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back. There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him. Right?

Another book where I am absolutely in love. I was so excited when my monthly subscription box came and this wonderfully blue book was inside. I’ve been wanting to read this book for the last couple of weeks and after I finished Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda, I was even more eager. And let me tell you, it was well worth the wait. I already knew The Upside of Unrequited was special when I started it on Friday and I already could relate to the main character. Molly is wonderful She’s a perfect MC who has many and familiar imperfections. She’s fat, but she doesn’t like to talk about it. She has a long list of crushes, not boyfriends. She’s introverted and likes to do crafts. I can seriously relate to that. Then I also liked how she noticed that a woman had her hair styled in ‘Sailor Moon buns’ and I was completely sold.

Her interactions with her family are amazing. Her small jealousy over her sister Cassie getting a girlfriend was adorable. Her conversations with Will were actually quite entertaining. I especially liked when they were all at a party together and some random guy starts hitting on Molly and comments how she’s ‘really cute for a big girl’ and Molly tells him to fuck off and Will is impressed. That was really cool. And then there is the character of Reid who I already knew was going to be important to Molly just because of how she interacted with him and how she wasn’t completely nervous – there were still some moments where she got embarrassed – around him. I especially loved their texting back and forth. I’m a sucker for those kind of things.

Final Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. This will definitely be one of those books where I will always go back to it if ever I’m in a reading slump and I need something to drag me out of it. Loved it!

Bookshelf worthy? Get it. You won’t regret it I promise. 🙂

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Everlasting by Alyson Noël

9395215Title: Everlasting
Author: Alyson Noël
Series: The Immortals
Previous Books in the Series:
1. Evermore
2. Blue Moon
3. Shadowland
4. Dark Flame
5. Night Star
Date Started: April 20
Date Finished: April 21
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

Their darkest enemies now defeated, Damen and Ever are free to embark upon their final quest—to free Damen from the poison lingering in his body. If they can just find the antidote, they’ll finally be able to feel each other’s touch—and experience the passionate night they’ve been longing for. But their fight to be together will lead them into the most formidable terrain yet…into the dark heart of Summerland.

Here in a land of scorched earth and endless rain, Ever and Damen will discover their relationship’s hidden origins, expose a secret history they never imagined…and come face to face with the true reason fate keeps tearing them apart. Only then, when the final mystery is unraveled and the last secret revealed, Ever and Damen’s future will hinge on one ultimate decision that will put everything at stake….even eternity.

After all the crap that I have given this series since book one, I was so excited to finally reach the conclusion that I actually read with fervor to find out what happens to Damen and Ever. Do they live happily ever after? Do they finally break the horrible curse that Roman put on them? Shockingly (heavy sarcasm here), they do both and they also do a few other things as well. First off, they find out that Ever wasn’t the only one who kept reincarnating. Damen did too. And the start of their history together was actually quite entertaining to read about. I also liked that we finally gave Damen a motivation for why he created the elixir – other than to save his orphan friends and bring meaning to his father’s unfinished work, of course. And just in case that isn’t enough, Ever gets all righteous on us. She realizes that what Jude has been saying all along is right. Being physically immortal isn’t natural, especially when she learns that her soul is immortal. So there has to be a way to reverse the effects, right?

Right. The mythical Tree of Life, isn’t as mythical. It actually exists and bears fruit that can help Ever reverse what the elixir did. The only problem? Damen isn’t too on board with the idea and leaves her to this quest alone. And I really do get it. After six hundred years of being immortal, it’s hard to go back to his human existence. I am pleased to say that he makes the right choice though in the end. And that moment that we’ve been waiting for since book 2, well…it was very satisfying.

Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. In a series that I had a hard time reading a good chunk of the time, the final book was actually quite nice to read. Ever no longer pisses me off. Damen actually does the right thing. Even the minor characters were a hoot. Especially Honor and Stacia. Talk about some serious character development. I still think some things came too easy for Ever – like all the immortals she ever killed forgiving and redeeming themselves?  – But it was a really good conclusion.

Bookshelf worthy? Support your local library!

Posted in Alyson Noël, Book Reviews, Paranormal, Romance, The Immortals series, Young Adult Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cress by Marissa Meyer

71tet4zx73lTitle: Cress
Author: Marissa Meyer
Series: Lunar Chronicles
Previous Books in the Series:
1. Cinder
2. Scarlet
Date Read: April 18
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army. Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who’s only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice. When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a higher price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

Let me tell you that I am grateful that work was slow on Tuesday, because once I picked up Cress I could not put it down. I know I’ve said this before but I like how Meyer weaves the separate storylines together so that they all flow together. This time around we’re dealing with Cress, Kai and Cinder and her fellow fugitives as they try to stop the wedding from hell. The action is supreme, the way that characters slowly start to form bonds is magnificent, and I love the way that Cinder’s character is developing. She is adjusting to her new role as ‘princess’ quite well. I really loved that scene where after using her Lunar abilities on Sybil she feels horrible and is afraid that she is turning into her aunt.

The one thing I didn’t really like in this book was the character of Cress. Don’t get me wrong I loved her hacking abilities and I loved how dedicated she was to finishing a job and her slowly growing bond with Thorne. But. There were a few times – like when she was captured to be sold to the doctor – that she was very weak and it got on my nerves. Now it could just be because I’m used to strong female characters in this story that I’m a little thrown off by her, but the girl really needs to toughen up. I’m hoping that now that she’s with Cinder and the rest of them and they’re about to start a revolution, she’ll become a little stronger.

Final Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. I devoured this book in one sitting and it was the best seven and a half hours of my week.

Bookshelf worthy? After three years of being on my shelf, I finally read it! Yay!

Posted in Book Reviews, Fairy Tale Retellings, Fantasy, Favorite Authors, Lunar Chronicles, Marissa Meyer, Romance, Science Fiction, Young Adult Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

51vf3a1rfzl-_sx330_bo1204203200_Title: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda
Author: Becky Albertalli
Date Started: April 15
Date Finished: April 17
Format: Hardcover from local library

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

Apparently, 2017 is going to be the year where these 280-300 paged ‘chick lit’ books are going to be the books that I desperately need right now. When I started Simon I didn’t think it was going to be my kind of book. Lately books that are ‘hyped’ in the YA world have been letting me down, and I was holding my breath with this one. But as I started to devour it on Saturday at work I was completely happy that this book wasn’t going to be that way.

Simon is adorable. The e-mail exchanges with Blue are adorable. I really lived for those chapters that just consist of e-mails between the two and their really hardcore flirting. And Simon’s interactions with high school are really real. I was a little nervous when no one seemed to bat an eye after Christmas break and the whole tumblr fiasco, but when Simone did eventually get teased I breathed a little easier. I kind of wished that something more had happened between Martin and Simon concerning their friendship, but I get that this book had to have some sort of unhappy plot ending. I do have to give it to Martin though. He did realize what he had done was horrible and stupid and he apologized. That’s more than some people like him do in real life.

Final Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. I’m not shocked that I liked Simon, but I am shocked that it stuck with me all weekend. This was definitely one of those books that I probably should have taken home with me instead of leaving it at work to finish on Monday. The characters were well written, the plot was well constructed. There were a few moments where things started to get a little bit ‘too perfect’ when it came to Simon being outted to the school, but a few football team teases and the stunt at rehearsal changed all of that.

Bookshelf worthy? Support your local library!

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Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead

9888165Title: Last Sacrifice
Author: Richelle Mead
Series: Vampire Academy
Previous Books in the Series:
1. Vampire Academy
2. Frostbite
3. Shadow Kiss
4. Blood Promise
5. Spirit Bound
Date Started: April 11
Date Finished: April 15
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

Rose Hathaway has always played by her own rules. She broke the law when she ran away from St. Vladimir’s Academy with her best friend and last surviving Dragomir princess, Lissa. She broke the law when she fell in love with her gorgeous, off-limits instructor, Dimitri. And she dared to defy Queen Tatiana, leader of the Moroi world, risking her life and reputation to protect generations of dhampir guardians to come.

Now the law has finally caught up with Rose – for a crime she didn’t even commit. She’s in prison for the highest offense imaginable: the assassination of a monarch. She’ll need help from both Dimitri and Adrian to find the one living person who can stall her execution and force the Moroi elite to acknowledge a shocking new candidate for the royal throne: Vasilisa Dragomir. But the clock on Rose’s life is running out. Rose knows in her heart the world of the dead wants her back…and this time she is truly out of second chances. The big question is, when your whole life is about saving others, who will save you?

This novel will always hold a special place in my heart, even if I decide to reread these books again ten years from now. The reason it will is because this was the last book I read before I went on a two year reading hiatus during college. And really, could I have picked a better book to do it with? Last Sacrifice not only ties up all the loose ends – except for two – quite nicely but Rose’s journey to vindicate herself of murder charges and also act on the note that Tatiana left her before she died is completely action packed.

Between being reunited with her ex who last they talked wanted to not be around her anymore because his love for her had faded and he couldn’t forgive himself for what he did to her while in Russia, and a certain other criminal and his brother joining the party, this road trip was crazy from the time they said go. But things back at court are also a mess to as Lissa, Christian, and Adrian try to help figure out who really killed Tatiana while also pretending to not have anything to do with Rose’s escape. Believe it or not, I wasn’t interested with what was going on at Court and every time Rose slipped into Lissa’s head to find out what was going on I was a little miffed.

There were more entertaining things happening right in front of her. I mean, it’s not everyday that you are stuck with the love of your life who still feels guilty on a road trip. And let me tell you how much fun I found that. *screams* Dimitri’s character development in this book was just amazingly done. He goes from being stand offish and guilty over the things he’s done, to her old instructor with his his philosophical speeches, to something he should have been if it hadn’t been for the Strigoi attack. My one complaint in all of this is how Rose and Dimitri got back together. Even though I was ecstatic about it, I still think they could have waited until Rose got back to Court and broke up with Adrian properly. I hate to see that guy hurt. I really do.

Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. The jumping between Court and what was going on with Rose threw off the plot line a little. I also again didn’t like how Adrian/Rose ended. I think it could have been a lot more cordial, I really do. Hopefully Rose is right and Adrian gets a happy ending. And he was right about one thing. What happened to Eddie?

Bookshelf worthy? I need another copy since the one I have is autographed!

Posted in Book Reviews, Favorite Authors, Mystery, Paranormal, Richelle Mead, Romance, Uncategorized, Vampire Academy Series, Young Adult Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill

28114396Title: Ever the Hunted
Author: Erin Summerill
Series: Clash of Kingdoms
Date Started: April 10
Date Finished: April 11
Format: Hardcover from local library

Seventeen year-old Britta Flannery is at ease only in the woods with her dagger and bow. She spends her days tracking criminals alongside her father, the legendary bounty hunter for the King of Malam—that is, until her father is murdered. Now outcast and alone and having no rights to her father’s land or inheritance, she seeks refuge where she feels most safe: the Ever Woods. When Britta is caught poaching by the royal guard, instead of facing the noose she is offered a deal: her freedom in exchange for her father’s killer. However, it’s not so simple. The alleged killer is none other than Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice. The only friend she’s ever known. The boy she once loved who broke her heart. She must go on a dangerous quest in a world of warring kingdoms, mad kings, and dark magic to find the real killer. But Britta wields more power than she knows. And soon she will learn what has always made her different will make her a daunting and dangerous force. Continue reading

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