Category: bookworm

Author: Sara Barnard

Rating: 5/5

I’m not generally a fan of contemporary YA novels as series. I think stand-alone’s are far more satisfying, and far less drawn out. So you can see why I was reluctant to pick up a sequel to a book I loved (Beautiful Broken Things review here) which I thought would be unnecessary at best, a waste of time at worst. 

I was so wrong. This book was beautiful. It focusses in a girl named Suzanne, who was a victim of child abuse and, at the beginning of the novel, is in the foster care system. We follow Suzanne as she gains her independence in a very big and very complex world which is moving on faster than her. Whilst I’m not an abuse survivor, I find Barnard’s narration endlessly relatable; the way Suzanne reflects on the concept of death, her description of feeling you’re on the edge and being too tired to do anything about it, and so many other moments. 

The relationships between Suzanne and her friends are so raw and real. Caddy and Rosie are far more developed than in the first instalment, and I love the different directions that Barnard took these three in. That said, my favourite relationship is between Suzanne and her retired musician neighbour, Dilys. Dilys is the perfect example of the good in this world that Suzanne had been so deprived of, and their friendship was pure and benevolent.

Finally, I want to talk about Suzanne’s family. Her brother plays a complicated role in her life, having never been a victim of their father’s wrath. It’s both heart-wrenching and disgusting how his childhood was so opposite to Suzanne’s, and how that affects their sibling relationship. Her mother is also beyond complicated, and this book gave me an insight into why child abuse is so rarely reported by family members. It’s so much more difficult than I could ever imagine, having such a loving and supportive family myself.

So, as if you couldn’t tell, I loved this book. I loved it more than Beautiful Broken Things. One of my new favourites for sure.

Mini review of Grace Williams Says It Loud by Emma Henderson.

Synopsis: Grace Williams was sent to a mental institution when she was 11. Through the pain, abuse and torment, she meets debonair Daniel – and together they find little ways of not only surviving in this life, but truly living.

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 All the books I’ve reviewed EVER!!!:

(Author’s Surname A-Z)

Wayfarer by Alexandra Bracken

The Selection by Kiera Cass

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Gullstruck Island by Frances Hardinge

The Gunslinger by Stephen King

(The Dark Tower Book Vs. Movie Review)

A Court Of Mist And Fury by Sarah J. Maas

A Court Of Wings And Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

Heir Of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Queen Of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan

History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

They Both Die At The End by Adam Silvera

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Author: Alexandra Bracken

Rating: 4/5

*possible spoilers for Passenger but NOT Wayfarer*

First thing’s first, I wasn’t a big fan of Passenger (I rated it 2.5/5). I found it too confusing and hard to swallow. However, Wayfarer is far far far superior. Since all of the exposition was covered in the first book, Wayfarer focussed much more on plot and characters and all the stuff we want to read. Yes, it was slightly confusing at times. But it made up for that fact with all the fabulous emotive story aspects and development.

The only thing I didn’t want Wayfarer to change much was the so rarely seen slow-burning romance between Nicholas and Etta. And once again, the author nailed their relationship and their development together. They are still seen as too very separate characters, not just a ship (which I appreciate), but you never forget about the connection they have to each other. Not to mention the other romantic relationship introduced in this book which I LOVED not because of the reason that becomes obvious when you’ve read it, but because of how they compliment each other.

Also, FRIENDSHIPS! Not enough romance-central books have friendships that I adore this much! They’re complex and deep – growing beautifully as you continue through the story. And all the new characters that are introduced have different relationships with the re-occurring characters, which is interesting to discover as the novel goes on.

LOVE LOVE LOVE the ending!! So satisfying yet just heart-breaking enough to be emotional. So, overall, very happy with this book. The only problem is that I still don’t understand how the time travel in this world works XD


Author: Sarah J. Maas

Rating: 5/5

I’m sorry I’ve been so inactive – but this book has consumed me for the last week and I haven’t been able to think of much else! I’m always so worried with sequels that it will ruin the characters or plot or SOMETHING, but… it was perfect. Unbelievably perfect. I cried, I laughed out loud and smiled all the way through, and it was those moments that we need throughout all the harrowing war and battles and plot twists.

Dear god, the plot twists. Every time I think I’ve predicted the outcome, Sarah J. Maas hits me if the face with my own naivety and then crams a new horrifying and/or beautiful moment down my throat (wow, that was graphic). It resulted in me covering up the bottom of the last page in the chapter so I wasn’t tempted to glimpse another spoiler, even if it was only a paragraph away! 

The universe that the author has created really comes together in this novel. As all the information weaves together and starts to make sense, it leaves the reader wondering about all the wonders Maas has kept a secret. But the world-building isn’t long and hard to swallow, it’s well-paced and relatively simple to keep up with.

Some could argue that this book was slow to start. I would understand where they were coming from, but in my opinion it kind of need that. Everything was so fast paced by the last ¼ that I needed all the conversation and build-up from the first 3.

To be honest, I got everything I wanted, needed and Mor (get it! cuz Mor and more… I’ll go). A thrilling end to a beautiful tale.

Author: Angie Thomas

Rating: 5/5

Eye-opening. If this book doesn’t become a classic, this world needs changing. Everything about this screams for everyone to read it!! It was so incredibly real and raw – more so than any book I’ve read (including ‘based on a true story’ books). I think the reason for that is that this novel has characters that everyone has in their own world: people pretending to be someone else to protect themselves, the unknowing bully, the annoying but will-die-for-you siblings, as well as a story that hasn’t been dramatically adjusted to make it more entertaining. Books that exaggerate real life events to “make it a better story” aren’t real enough. 

Yet, The Hate U Give is still a good read – even if you discount all the important subject matter. The language was very colloquial for a young girl such as Starr, and each character had their own colloquialisms too. The pace was right too – detailed but not slow.

Something Angie Thomas achieved exceptionally, in my opinion, is the use of young, modern slang without sounding forced. Authors who aren’t well equipped with these terms make it sound cringy and strained, but Angie Thomas’ style works seamlessly; Starr’s language shows a lot about her character.

Nothing about the actual literature, but I CAN’T STAND THE SPINE OF THE PAPERBACK!!! I get it – THUG = The Hate U Give and Tupac and all that – but seriously THUG on the spine?! No.

Anyway, read this book. You need to.

Currently Reading // September 9th 2017

Currently Reading // September 9th 2017

The Girl
from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

Rating: ★★★☆☆


It was the kind of August day that hinted at monsoons, and the year was
1774, though not for very much longer.

Sixteen-year-old Nix Song is a time-traveller. She, her father and their
crew of time refugees travel the world aboard The Temptation, a glorious pirate
ship stuffed with treasures both typical and mythical. Old maps allow Nix and
her father to navigate not just to distant lands, but distant times – although
a map will only take you somewhere once. And Nix’s father is only interested in
one time, and one place: Honolulu 1868. A time before Nix was born, and her
mother was alive. Something that puts Nix’s existence rather dangerously in

(from Goodreads)


I was really excited to read
this book for the longest time. First of all – time-traveling pirates. That’s
the best thing imaginable. Secondly – the cover is just so incredibly beautiful
(I know, I know, don’t judge a book by its cover), that it drew me in. In the
end the book may not have quite lived up to my expectations, but it was still
an enjoyable read.

The concept of this story is
spectacular and unique. It’s such a cool idea that a person would be able to
navigate to any map, be it real or imaginary. My first thought when the
characters described how they travelled between times was of course: “So if they
had a map of Hogwarts or Narnia, they could just go there?” That made me very
excited. Do you have any idea how often I’ve dreamt of being able to do that?
However, navigating, as they call it, it a bit more complicated. The map has to
be hand drawn and made in the contemporary time, so a map of India in 1774 must
have been drawn in 1774. And in order for them to travel to a mythical or
imaginary land the person who drew the map must believe the place is real. This
makes it sound like mythical maps are extremely rare, but apparently not. On
the ship the crew has a bunch of magical objects from different myths, such as
a bottomless sack from an Irish story and luminescent herring from a
Scandinavian myth explaining the Northern Lights. They even have a crew member
from an imaginary city.

The crew is able to navigate
to these strange and magical places all thanks to Nix, our main character. The
girl is like a walking encyclopaedia of myth and history. I am myself a big fan
of mythology, but there was still so much mentioned in this book that I had no
idea about. Still, you could keep up with the story without knowing all the
facts beforehand. And for the very curious (like me) there is a handy dandy
author’s note in the back detailing the origins of most of the myths and
objects mentioned in the story.

The story mostly takes place
in Hawaii in the 1800’s. I have always wanted to go to Hawaii, so learning more
about its history was really fascinating. This was a story I had never heard
before in my life. I am starting to realize what an interesting history Hawaii
has, and would really like to learn more.

I found the main character to
be extremely smart, but a bit hard to relate to. She keeps herself at arm’s
length from the other characters, and also from the reader. The rest of the
characters in this story are very diverse, which always makes a story better in
my opinion. The ships motely crew come from all over the world and from all
different times, which makes a very interesting mix.

This is most of all an adventure
story, but from the blurb I thought it would also have quite a bit of romance
in it. I mean, the front reads “A journey through time. A journey to love.”. In
spite of that, I do not think this was a love story at all. Sure, there was
some romantic tension between a few characters, but not at all enough to call
it a romance. This turned out to be the complete opposite of most YA, where
there is usually more romance than you expected. Instead, this book focuses
more on the love within families, which is refreshing.

I really enjoyed this story.
It had plenty of adventure and lots of myth and history. I adore the
time-traveling concept, and I look forward to seeing where the author takes the
story in the next book (I believe this is a duology?). I recommend it to all
history- and mythology nerds out there or to anyone looking for an entertaining
adventure story. Also, how could you say no to time-traveling pirates?

//love from L

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