Book Recommendations, Book Reviews, Uncategorized

The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare

1076924

There is no escape if love is not there.

I must say The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare took me by surprise. It is a young adult historical about a girl named Kit as she moves from Barbados to Connecticut to live with her aunt and her family after her grandfather passes away. It’s a culture shock from simply how the country is to the way her mother’s sister’s family lives. They are Puritans, and the way Kit was raised was rather unconventional.

 Kit struggles with fitting in and finds friends in unlikely places. The town in general disproves of her no matter how hard she tries to fit in. Eventually, she is accused of being a witch.

I did not expect this story to be what it was. I only had it because people put it on best witch book lists which I know don’t understand at all. There is no magic in this book so that’s very misleading.

It is, however, a very good puritan book. That’s not something I read often, if at all, but I actually found myself loving Kit, her friends, and her family. Usually puritans are never relateable or in any way interesting or good people, but this book makes them so.

While not my favorite writing style, I felt it drag a little, I did enjoy the story. A lot more than I thought I would when I  figured out there was no magic. The strength of this book is the romance. I haven’t rooted so strongly for a couple in a long time.

I actually looked for a sequel, but unfortunately, there isn’t one. It’s not like the ending isn’t satisfying. I simply did not want to leave the characters.

5 stars 

Advertisements
Book Predictions, Book Recommendations, Uncategorized

The Name of This Book is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch

1099301

Only bad books have good endings.
If a book is any good, it’s ending is always bad – because you don’t want the book to end.

The Name of This Book is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch is a middle grade mystery that could be compared to the writing style of Lemony Snicket. It details the adventure of Cassandra and Max-Ernest as they uncover a mystery of a missing magician as Pseudonymous Bosch warns the reader to stop reading lest they be in danger by learning the knowledge the book contains.

I think the writing style really elevated the book. I felt it kind of dragged on in some places, but the humor helped me forgive that. It does keep the book from being taken that seriously, but I think that might be the adult in me talking. I’m sure if I read this as a kid, the idea of these two kids and their secret mission I wasn’t suppose to know about would send my imagination running.

The two main characters are smart and cute. I loved following them and their blossoming friendship. I love that Cassandra has two grandpas as well. They are all fully developed, and their mistakes only endeared them to me more.

It was a fun, fast paced read. The plot interesting and exciting. This is only the first book in five book series which I think I will pick up in the future.

4 stars

Book Reviews, Uncategorized

The Incendiaries by R.O. Kwon

36679056

I ate pain. I swilled tears. If I could take enough in, I’d have no space left to fit my own.

The Incendiaries by R.O. Kwon is an adult literary novel following as a young man pieces together how his girlfriend found herself in a cult. 

It’s written in a style I don’t think I’ve seen before. There is no dialogue. It’s written strictly as a guy trying to remember past events. Sometimes with the cult leader’s and girlfriend’s perspective. It took me a while to get used to, but it’s very interesting.

I can’t say I was invested in the characters per say, but I can’t deny I was invested in learning about how the story unfolded. It wasn’t a fun story, but it was a story I wanted to know the ending to. I did felt confused a lot. I’m not sure if I missed some themes or something in that confusion which is unfortunate.

There is terrorism in this story. Violence, pro-life extremists, and rape. Just as a warning.

Overall, I think this book was good. It’s short and quick but it packs a punch. I do think it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea though.

4 stars

Book Recommendations, Book Reviews, Uncategorized

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson

35707056

A scoop of dried rosemary goes into the bag, followed by salt. Sometimes, magic looks a lot like how my mom prepares chicken.

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson pretty much made it on my top favorite books of the year at the very first sentence. It is a young adult, paranormal, mystery following Mila Flores as she brings her best friend and two enemy’s, those were accidents, back to life for a week. She’s convinced her friend was murdered, and needs her help in order to solve it.

The writing of this book was so easy and smart and funny. I quickly sank into this world, and did not want to exit it even as I tore through the pages desperate to find out what would happen. It was gripping and the twist at the end I did not see coming.

The characters were the best part of the book in my opinion. Mila is a fat, Mexican, Wiccan who is snarky and insecure and funny, and one of my new favorite characters. I love her growth throughout the story. The female friend group that forms is great, and I came to really care for each of them.

This book talks about feminism, fatness, cultural appropriation, depression, PTSD, therapy, and I’m sure I’m forgetting some. There are two fat girls of color who talk about their town being small and white. There is an f/f couple as well.

This book should be on everyone’s radar. It’s tragically under talked about. And with it now being October, this could be a perfect book for those who like spooky vibes without things being too scary.

5 stars

Book Recommendations, Book Reviews, Uncategorized

Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan

28187

Deadlines just aren’t real to me until I’m staring one in the face.

I’ve been debating whether or not to review this series when I had finished it. On one hand, everyone had heard about this series. On the other hand, it’s taking me a long time to finish and multiple weeks have missed posts because I was reading of the these books. Obviously, I’ve decided to review.

The Lightning Thief is the first in this five book series following Percy Jackson. He starts off as a regular twelve-year-old who struggles in school because he has dyslexia and ADHD. He soon discovers the dad he has never known is a Greek god, and that his whole life will constantly be in danger because monsters will always be after him.

5 stars

28186

 You can’t give up on your family, no matter how tempting they make it.

The overarching plot is this Great Prophecy that the characters aren’t sure who it is about. Percy is obviously a good candidate.  So he has a lot of expectations and enemies before even knowing that the myths are real.

As Percy goes on his various quests, he gets more and more proficient at navigating his new world. However, his world is steadily getting more and more dangerous. He has to rise up to these new challenges every time. 

One common theme in these books is the short time frame Percy has to finish these quests. Somehow, Riordan makes these action packed books work without skimping on character development or world building. 

3 stars

561456

In a way, it’s nice to know that there are Greek gods out there, because you have somebody to blame when things go wrong.

The characters are definitely the shining stars of the series. Percy, Annabeth, Grover, Chiron, Sally, and so many others. They are all fully formed and complex. Even the smallest side characters. Everyone has flaws and makes mistakes, and every betrayal and redemption made me just as emotional as the one before it. 

I loved how Riordan made the gods into people. They were so annoying yet helpful yet detrimental. Like a real family.

5 stars

2120932

Don’t feel bad, I’m usually about to die.

The writing is so easy and nice to sink into. I never had any complaints about it. The humor never skipped a beat. Even now, a couple hours after finishing the last book, I want to pick up the next series to keep the feeling of peace these books give me.

5 stars

4556058

With great power… comes great need to take a nap. Wake me up later.

This first series was perfectly wrapped up for me. Everything ended so well, and I love knowing this isn’t the last time we see Percy or Annabeth even if they aren’t as prominent.

There are still so many books that I can read after this that I know get better and more diverse. I can’t wait to finally pick them up.

5 stars 

Lists, Uncategorized

Movie Adaptions We Want to See

With the recent amazing adaptions of Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan and To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, we thought it would be nice to think of other books that we would love to see. What other books that you don’t see here that you would like to see on screen?

Nicole:

The Clocktaur Wars duology by T. Kingfisher

With the right CGI for the Clockwork boys, the Rune, and the gnoles I think this would be a lovely movie. I would love to see Slate and Brenner and the whole gang on screen. It could be very fantastical but heartwarming and heartbreaking as the book is.

Spirit Hunters by Ellen Oh

This ghost story with a Korean main character could be like To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. It’s not necessarily that original, but it’s a fresh perspective that is lovely to see.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan 

The movie of this was horrible, but I would love to see another chance taken on this series. I think a TV series would be ideal with spin offs like the books. It would be really great.

  Iron Cast by Destiny Soria

This is one of my favorite books and I would love to see these characters come to life on screen. The magic could be easily done I think, and the characters would be beautiful.

The Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi

This story is similar to Jumanji and I think the board game could translate beautifully on screen. And the food! It would be great to see. I think it would look very beautiful.

Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

I think this is the only one on my list that isn’t fantasy in some way. But I think this could be a powerful movie if done right. I would love it if an actual disabled person was hired unlike with what happened to Wonder.

Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead

I think this one could have another chance. A TV show could really be better for it I think.

 

Isis:

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
I know there’s already a screenplay and they’re currently working to get the movie going, but nothing seems sure at the moment. I would love to see my favorite book of all time adapted. And I really want it to be an indie film. I don’t want extra drama added. I trust that Saenz will make sure the movie is done as artistically as possible. He said so himself during a panel I saw with him.  Anyway, I just want all the actors to be Mexican and not whitewashed.

We are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchinson
I loved this book so much. I’d love to see my sweet Diego on screen. I would also LOVE to see the aliens portrayed. And the abductions!! That would be awesome. This could be a kickass movie.

In Perfect Light by Benjamin Alire Saenz
This is my second favorite book by Saenz. It’s very tragic, but so hopeful too. I think it would be a very sad movie, but it could be done so well. It should also be indie. Those are the best.

Angelfall by Susan Ee
This book felt like a movie, so it would be perfect on the big screen. And this one needs to be a big budget film. I want all the special effects. I want the amazing CGI angel wings. I want that creepy ending done well. I want all of the angel fights to blow my mind. I would see this movie a hundred times. It would be the first action film I’d watch willingly.

Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat
So I still have my issues with this book, but I think it would be an interesting movie. I’d love to see the costumes. And I’d loved to see a Damen on screen. He’d have to be real buff. Also, who could possibly play Laurent? And would his hair be long or short? The fandom believes his hair is long but the text says it’s short. What is the truth? Anyway, this movie would be good. I’d so watch it.

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Listen, Shatter Me has the potential to be the next Hunger Games. We need to make these movies so everyone can know about Warner. I love these books so much. They’d make amazing movies. We can start Team Warner and Team Adam like we did with Twilight. Shatter Me has so much potential to blow up. We need a new young adult franchise!

At the Edge of the Universe by Shaun David Hutchinson
This is my favorite Hutchinson book and it absolutely needs a movie. It’s very trippy. It could be done so well in a movie. The entire book messed with my head but I loved every moment of it. I’d like to see the universe shrinking on screen. How would they even show that? I’d love to see a world without the sun or the moon. That’d be the real challenge.

The Long Walk by Stephen King
I know this is already being turned into a movie but until I see a trailer I won’t believe it. I need this movie so baddd. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about this book. It’s my favorite book right now. I love it so much it hurts. The movie would need to show the boys before the long walk, of course. All of Ray’s childhood memories, all of McVries’s memories as well. It could be so beautiful. I need this movie.

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
I didn’t like the adaptation of The Shining, but I think Doctor Sleep could be done much better. There’s no creepy redrum, but my sweet Dan is in it. I love Dan Torrance. This book is a wild ride and it would make such a cool movie. I’m not sure who sound play Dan. No one is good enough for that role.

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
This is the least talked about John Green book. I get it. There’s math in it. People don’t find it interesting. But it’s my favorite John Green book. The MC was super smart and I loved him right away. It deserves a movie and it deserves to be loved. That book made me so happy. The movie would be great.

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Listen, I gave this book 3 stars but I still need the movie. I feel like it would be much better as a movie than as a book. I really liked Simon and his friends and I wanna see a dragon. Also, if Baz is played by Ezra Miller I would be his #1 fan. So yeah, of all the Rainbow Rowell books, this is the one I’d like to see on the big screen.

Autoboyography by Christina Lauren
So I was obsessed with this book, and I would be obsessed with the movie. This could be such a great film. An indie film, that it. Again, I don’t need any special effects for this one. It can be quiet. It can be sweet. It can be powerful. I really think the world deserves this story in every version. It’s so so good.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
This would be the best summer rom com ever. I would love to see this as a movie. The coffee scene would be hilarious. I can already see it. Honestly, movie producers are missing out big time by not picking this one up. I would be at the theater for the midnight showing.

Book Recommendations, Book Reviews, Film Reviews, Uncategorized

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Image result for crazy rich asians

“Remember, every treasure comes with a price.”

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan is an adult contemporary novel following Rachel as she meets her boyfriend, Nick’s, family. What she doesn’t know is that they are super crazy rich, and that money has gone to their heads. So the book follows her as she deals with all of their judging and backstabbing ways a long with a couple other POVs like Nick’s mom Eleanor and his cousin, Astrid.

This is such a light, funny book. A nice break from my usual books that can be a little dark. It doesn’t have the best writing in the world, but it doesn’t subtract from the book at all which I think is the important thing.

At the start it can be confusing. There is all these names of family members and it takes time to really understand who is who and who all is related, but it does get easier. I did feel like there is a lot of filler in the beginning, but it does help you understand to whole world later.

I really liked to characters and even when I didn’t, I liked disliking them. They shocked me with their antics, and made me fall in love with their love. They are complex and real even when it is still hard to wrap my head around how rich they all are.

I also saw the movie adaption and it is just as wonderful. The changes were there, but I felt they were good changes. It was a sweet, funny movie just as the book was. I would recommend reading the book and seeing the movie.

There has been talk about the anti-black sentiments in this. Most of the help had darker skin. There is classism and  sexism as well. I would link an article talking about this but I can’t find a good one. 

4 stars