Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli

51mxvsvfmzl-_sx322_bo1204203200_Title: Leah on the Offbeat
Author: Becky Albertalli
Date Started: July 6
Date Finished: July 10
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.

So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.

My summer of conflict continues. Leah on the Offbeat has been on my Most Anticipated Reads list since I finished Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and The Upside of Unrequited last year. And when I started this book I was devouring things like nobodies business. This was a sort of sequel to Simon, only from the point of view of his best friend Leah. So we still got to see all the characters we fell in love with in Simon – Simon, Bram, Nick, and Abby – just from a different side of things. And I was really enjoying myself catching up with the clique that I fell in love with.

But then…Leah’s snarkiness really started to get on my nerves a little bit. She was so down on everything when it went wrong that she…kind of reminded me of myself a little bit and one of my worst character traits ever. Then there was also the problem of the relationship in this one. And no I’m really not talking about Garrett’s obvious crush on Leah. I’m talking about *spoilers ahead* Leah’s crush on Abby that apparently is kind of returned? I mean, normally I would probably be jumping for joy for this couple because they do work together. But I’m just not a fan of the whole dating other members of the friend group thing. I saw that a lot on my favorite shows, and eventually they just work their way through the friends and things are awkward for months or years afterward. And sure, they’re seniors in high school/freshman in college. But still.

Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Despite my complaints about Leah’s negativity and the pairing in this novel, I still loved the world that was started in Simon. It was fun catching up with all these characters and I really liked the Sailor Moon references too!

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Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

51ddbkfpljlTitle: Dreams of Gods and Monsters
Author: Laini Taylor
Series: Daughter of Smoke and Bone
Previous Books in the Series:
1. Daughter of Smoke and Bone
2. Days of Blood and Starlight
Date Started: July 2
Date Finished: July 5
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

Two worlds are poised on the brink of a vicious war. By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera’s rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her. When the brutal angel emperor brings his army to the human world, Karou and Akiva are finally reunited – not in love, but in a tentative alliance against their common enemy. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves. But with even bigger threats on the horizon, are Karou and Akiva strong enough to stand among the gods and monsters?

Five years after I first started reading this series, I finally get around to reading its conclusion. And let me tell you, after how badly Inferno went for me I was a little hesitant to read this book. I did not need for the same thing to happen with Dreams of Gods and Monsters that happened with the last book in the Talon Saga. But as I read, I should have known that that wouldn’t be the case. Taylor is very good at what she does. She dropped me right back into the world of the chimera and angels like no time had passed at all. And in fact, in this book no time has passed since the events of the second book. Jael has entered the human world, which of course, causes mass panic and confusion. Akiva and Laz have approached the chimera with a deal. They need to take out Jael and they want to join forces to do so.

And of course, the White Wolf is no longer the White Wolf, but Zuri in Thiago’s body, which is just crazy on so many different levels. I’m not sure how I feel about Zuri harboring some feelings for Karou, but I think it all worked out in the end. In the most bizarre and interesting of ways. The action really flowed nicely in this book, I forget how much I love Taylor’s short to the point chapters. Although the whole Eliza character and what her story arc was is still confusing and definitely demands another re-read at some point in the future. But still, I did not expect to have so many emotions about chimera and angels, but I did and it was glorious.

Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. To me, the ending was left a little bit open for a spin off series or something. Since the stormchasers and the Stelian and the Cataclysm weren’t really resolved. But all in all, this was not that bad of a series ending.

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Inferno by Julie Kagawa

61lgpclmm2lTitle: Inferno
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: Talon Saga
Previous Books in the Series:
1. Talon
2. Rogue
3. Soldier
4. Legion
Date Started: June 29
Date Finished: July 2
Format: ebook from the digital library

Ember Hill has learned a shocking truth about herself: she is the blood of the Elder Wyrm, the ancient dragon who leads Talon and who is on the verge of world domination. With the Order of St. George destroyed, Ember, Riley and Garret journey to the Amazon jungle in search of one who might hold the key to take down the Elder Wyrm and Talon—if they can survive the encounter. Meanwhile, Ember’s brother, Dante, will travel to China with a message for the last Eastern dragons: join Talon or die. With the stakes rising and the Elder Wyrm declaring war, time is running out for the rogues and any dragon not allied with Talon. The final battle approaches. And if Talon is victorious, the world will burn.

This book just proved why I don’t like final books in series. Seriously, it could have been because I started reading this book during my busiest time at work and I’m completely exhausted, but Inferno just didn’t do anything for me. It was too predictable and things got tied up too neatly for my liking. I mean honestly. Spoilers ahead. Garret has dragon blood in him and he’s going to live an abnormally long life span? Really? Because that doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that Riley is finally able to move on from Ember with Mist? C’mon. Not to mention that I felt that the battle scenes were a little bit lackluster. Even when Ember, Garret, Mist and Tristan were trapped in the elevator, I didn’t have any ‘oh no, this is completely hopeless’ feelings. I just guessed that they were going to make it out all right. Ugh. I hate predictability it really makes plots boring.

Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. I’m giving this book four stars even though it was predictable, because I’m pretty sure I’m just cranky and tired. Probably. Although…considering it was supposed to be the final battle, I really expected more from this book. I really did.

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The Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter

51xqtq-jx2bl-_sx330_bo1204203200_Title: The Queen of Zombie Hearts
Author: Gena Showalter
Series: The White Rabbit Chronicles
Previous Books in the Series:
1. Alice in Zombieland
2. Through the Zombie Glass
Date Started: June 26
Date Finished: June 27
Format: Kindle book from my collection

Alice “Ali” Bell thinks the worst is behind her. She’s ready to take the next step with boyfriend Cole Holland, the leader of the zombie slayers…until Anima Industries, the agency controlling the zombies, launches a sneak attack, killing four of her friends. It’s then she realizes that humans can be more dangerous than monsters…and the worst has only begun. As the surviving slayers prepare for war, Ali discovers she, too, can control the zombies…and she isn’t the girl she thought she was. She’s connected to the woman responsible for killing-and turning-Cole’s mother. How can their relationship endure? As secrets come to light, and more slayers are taken or killed, Ali will fight harder than ever to bring down Anima-even sacrificing her own life for those she loves. Continue reading

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Dating Disasters of Emma Nash by Chloe Seager

9781335017055.inddTitle: Dating Disasters of Emma Nash
Author: Chloe Seager
Date Started: June 18
Date Finished: June 23
Format: Hardcover from a book-subscription box

Emma Nash may be down, but after months of wallowing, stalking her ex online and avoiding showering—because, really, who’s going to care?—Emma’s ready to own her newly single status, get out with her friends and chronicle her dating adventures on her private blog. But life online doesn’t always run smoothly. Stumbling upon her mother’s Tinder dating profile, getting catfished and accidentally telling the entire world why her ex-boyfriend Leon’s not worth any girl’s…um…time… Okay, those were disasters. But surely nothing else can go wrong? Continue reading

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The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West

51BshpuGREL._SX350_BO1,204,203,200_Title: The Fill-In Boyfriend
Author: Kasie West
Date Started: June 18
Date Finished: June 21
Format: ebook from the digital library

When Gia Montgomery’s boyfriend, Bradley, dumps her in the parking lot of her high school prom, she decides to do the unthinkable…convince the cute guy waiting to pick up his sister to pretend to be her boyfriend for the night. The task is simple: two hours, zero commitment, a few white lies. The problem is that days after prom, she can’t stop thinking about her fill-in boyfriend. But can Gia turn her fake boyfriend into a real one without exposing her lie and possibly destroying her friendships and her newfound relationship? Continue reading

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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

chamber-of-secretsTitle: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Author: J.K. Rowling
Series: Harry Potter
Previous Book in the Series:
1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Date Started: June 14
Date Finished: June 18
Format: Hardcover from my shelf

The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike Continue reading

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