Confession Time: Series I Didn’t Finish

September was a very busy month for me. My husband and I have been doing a lot of renovations in our house. We replaced all the floors in our living room, kitchen, and new study. We just closed in the old entry way that we didn’t use so that it could move our study into there. It has been a lot of work but it’s finally coming together. Once my new reading area is put together I’ll post about it. During the move I’ve had to go through my books and I was shocked by how many series I started but just never finished. Here are a few.

The Selection

I loved the first three books in this series and I was excited about reading The Heir when it came out, I bought it (and The Crown when it came out), but for some reason I just never started reading them.

Will I finish it at some point?: I hope so

 

 

The Matched Trilogy

Again, I liked these books. I read the first two, bought the third, started to read it but never finished. In fact on my Goodreads profile it’s still marked as “Currently reading” since FEBRUARY OF 2014!!!

Will I finish it at some point?: At this rate probably not because I would have to go back and reread the first two and I hate to reread books.

 

The Partials Trilogy

I loved these books. They were amazing, I devoured the first two, I bought the last one and…. never read it. The only reason I can think of is that I just didn’t want it all to be over so soon.

Will I finish it at some point?: I would like to but probably not because I would have to reread the first two and I’m afraid they wouldn’t be as good as I remember.

 

 

The Maze Runner

I read the first book and then started the second one but didn’t finish it. I just didn’t love these books as much as everyone else. They were good but just not great in my opinion. Maybe I would like them more if I read all of them but I’m not planning on it.

Will I finish it at some point: Don’t think so

 

 

I’m sure there are many, many, many more series out there that I started and didn’t finish but I can’t think of any more right now.

What are some series you didn’t finish and why?

 

Advertisements

Genuine Fraud By E. Lockhart an ARC Review

I got my hands on this book a few months ago when I attended the North Texas Teen Book Festival (check out that post here). Because I had signed up with First in Line (which is now Underlined) I got a free ARC and a tote bag. The fact that I was given this book for free in no way affects my opinions on it. This is my honest review. Now onto the review.

I loved We Were Liars when I read it last year so my expectations for this book were pretty high and I’m glad to say that it met all of them. I’m going to keep this spoiler free because I’d hate to ruin it for you. I recommend planning to just stop whatever you’re doing for a few hours and read this book in one sitting, it will make it easier to keep up with all the time jumps, you won’t want to put it down anyway.

Summary:

The story of a young woman whose diabolical smarts are her ticket into a charmed life. But how many times can someone reinvent themselves? You be the judge.

Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat.
Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete.
An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two.
A bad romance, or maybe three.
Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains.
A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her.
A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.

Goodreads

Favorite things:

This book is backwards. Literally. You start with one of the last chapters and then go backwards in time. This was a little complicated for the first two or three chapters but by then I was used to it and it was no big deal. Even though I had my guesses about what happened I was still surprised and loved seeing how details I learned in the first chapter (which is actually the end), tied together with the last chapters (which is actually the start of the story). The whole time my mind was just blown.

The strong female lead. Jule is one of the most strong female characters I’ve read. She is incredibly smart, strong, and she didn’t take crap from anyone. However, I just didn’t find myself rooting for her. I had sort of a hard time attaching myself to her.

The writing. This book doesn’t have all the metaphors that We Were Liars has and while the writing isn’t as poetic I loved it just as much. E. Lockharts attention to details is amazing. I can’t think of one string that was left untied.

Not so Favorite things:

I just didn’t really love any of the characters (for reasons I won’t go into because of spoilers).  But I don’t think this is one of those books were you need to like to characters to keep reading.

 

The quills:

Cursing?

There really isn’t all that much cursing but the f word is used multiple times.

Physical romance?

She walks in on her roommates at one point but it’s not really graphically described.

Gore?

Yes

Will you cry?

Probably not

Overall rating?

Four out of five hedgehogs

The Author:

E. Lockhart Website Twitter

Extras:

This book comes out tomorrow (September 5th 2017). You can check out the book trailer here.  E. Lockhart actually went to one of the places this book takes place and took pictures you can see them here. 

 

When you get your hands on this book please let me know, I need people to talk about this with!

Yet another post about me failing another NaNoWriMo event

Well, I did it. I’ve failed three NaNoWriMo events in a row (hold the applause). I don’t even have a good excuse this month. Yeah April was busy but so was last April and I finished that time. I don’t know what happened I couldn’t even get to the 5,000 mark this month.

However, I did start writing my book. Which is huge for me. I’ve been thinking about writing this book for months and I finally started it because of Camp NaNo. I plan on finishing this book at some point during 2017 but we will see if that happens.

This month was a good learning month for me though.

I learned that writing a Middle Grade book is not as easy as I thought it would be. For anyone else who has read a short middle grade book and thought “I bet I could write a book like that in less than month.” Spoiler alert, you’re wrong. Just because Middle Grade books tend to be shorter and more “simple” does not mean that they are easier to write. In fact I think they might be harder because of that.

I learned that third person, past tense  is hard for me to write. I’ve only ever written in first person, present tense in the past. When I started writing this new book it was like I was learning to write all over again. I kept having to go back and change words and cut out thoughts.

I also learned that if a book requires research it also needs a really good outline.

 

How did April treat you this month? Did you attempt Camp NaNoWriMo? If so how did you do?

A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall

I found out about this book over on The Calico Books last year (you can check out her review here) and have been meaning to read it ever since. I finally picked it up this month and I’m so glad I did. This book is super sweet and cute.

Summary:

The creative writing teacher, the delivery guy, the local Starbucks baristas, his best friend, her roommate, and the squirrel in the park all have one thing in common—they believe that Gabe and Lea should get together. Lea and Gabe are in the same creative writing class. They get the same pop culture references, order the same Chinese food, and hang out in the same places. Unfortunately, Lea is reserved, Gabe has issues, and despite their initial mutual crush, it looks like they are never going to work things out.  But somehow even when nothing is going on, something is happening between them, and everyone can see it. Their creative writing teacher pushes them together. The baristas at Starbucks watch their relationship like a TV show. Their bus driver tells his wife about them. The waitress at the diner automatically seats them together. Even the squirrel who lives on the college green believes in their relationship.

Surely Gabe and Lea will figure out that they are meant to be together….

-Goodreads

Favorite things:

All the POVs. There are 14 different point of views in this book and none of them are the main characters. At first I was a little iffy about this, but as soon as I started reading it I was hooked. It was such a refreshing way for a romance novel to be written. All of the characters were so different, and it was fun to watch them ship Lea and Gabe.  Also, there is some diversity in the characters in this book.

The bench and the squirrel. These two were some of my favorite povs. The bench was just so creepy. It makes me kind of second guess siting on a bench now. The squirrel was so adorable, I loved him.

It was funny. The book was so quirky and funny.

The whole thing was just sweet and light. This book isn’t heavy, it’s not one that you really have to think about. You can just enjoy it. It was a good book to get me out of reading slump and the perfect book to read on a rainy day.

A favorite quote:

“Sometimes it’s better to say something stupid than nothing at all.”

The quills:

Cursing?

Some, I’d say it was PG-13 at most

Physical romance?

No

Gore?

Nope

Will you cry?

Nope

Overall rating?

Three out of five hedgehogs

The Author:

Sandy Hall, she has a couple of other books out. I plan on reading Signs Point to Yes at some point.

Website

Twitter

Have you read this book? How do you feel about this many POVs?

Photo source

Vitro by Jessica Khoury

I didn’t realize until after I finished reading this book that this is actually a sequel in a trilogy. The first book being Origin (which I haven’t read). I’m pretty sure you can read them in any order because they each follow different characters in different situations, they just all have to do with the same organization, Corpus.

Summary:

On Skin Island, even the laws of creation can be broken.

On a remote island in the Pacific, Corpus scientists have taken test tube embryos and given them life. These beings—the Vitros—have knowledge and abilities most humans can only dream of. But they also have one enormous flaw.

Sophie Crue is determined to get to Skin Island and find her mother, a scientist who left Sophie behind years ago. With the help of Jim Julien, a young charter pilot, she arrives–and discovers a terrifying secret she never imagined: she has a Vitro twin, Lux, who is the culmination of Corpus’s dangerous research.

Now Sophie is torn between reuniting with the mother who betrayed her and protecting the genetically enhanced twin she never knew existed. But untangling the twisted strands of these relationships will have to wait, for Sophie and Jim are about to find out what happens when science stretches too far beyond its reach.

-Goodreads

Favorite things:

The concept. The thing that I loved about this book so much was that it took something that happens everyday and took it 100 steps farther. Embryos are made in labs everyday and then either used, frozen for later use, or used in experiments (like stem cell research). In fact we can even test embryos to see if they will have genetic problems and some scientist are trying to figure out ways to “edit” those embryos to make them better. I don’t know that we will ever take it as far as the scientist do in Vitro, but they could try which is what makes this book so great and slightly scary.

Skin Island. The atmosphere is really well written in this book. I loved the feeling of the old deserted resort turned secret lab. I wish there had been a map or brochure type thing in the front of the book, that would have been a nice touch. The only thing that annoyed the tar out of me was how many times it was mentioned during the first 50ish pages. Everyone Sophie talked to was like nooo you don’t want to go there, no one ever goes there, no one will fly you there, etc. I got it, it’s a dangerous, mysterious place, no one talks about.

The ethics. This book dealt with some really ethically heavy topics and I feel like it did it really well. It also gave you some things to think about.

Not so Favorite things:

The romance. I feel like the romance was ok but it wasn’t what I was rooting for. It just never seemed to be that big of a deal. Even though Jim was risking his life for Sophie I felt like he was doing it out of obligation not love.

The characters kind of fell flat for me. Sophie and Jim were just kind bleh. I got tired of Jim constantly kicking himself for helping someone else, and Sophie was making bad choices the whole time.

Something felt off with this book the whole way through and I can’t figure out what it was. I can’t tell if the plot was too back and forth, or maybe it was all of the paragraphs with Jim wandering around the island. Ultimately, the whole time I was reading it I couldn’t help but think this book could be like 50 pages shorter than it is. There were times when it felt repetitive and like it just rambled.

Some favorite quotes:

“Tell me, who is the monster? The creation or the creator?”

“If people could fall apart, why couldn’t they fall back together?”

The quills:

Cursing?

I don’t remember there being any cursing, but I read it over the course of a couple weeks.

Physical romance?

Nope, in fact I’m not even sure that there was a kiss in this book.

Gore?

There was a tiny bit towards the end but you could skip over it if wanted.

Will you cry?

Probably not.

Overall rating?

Three out of five hedgehogs

Overall the book was good but I’m not singing it praises.

The Author:

Jessica Khoury, she seems to be pretty active on Goodreads.

Website Goodreads

 

Even though I wasn’t 100% in love with Vitro I plan on going ahead and reading Origin (the first book), because everyone says it’s really good and better than Vitro

Photo source

I’m in a Reading Slump.

I am in one of the worst reading slumps I have had in a long time. In the past four months I have read two books. One of which I started reading around Christmas time. This time last year I was reading so many books. March 2016 was one of my best reading months, ever.

I can’t figure out why I’m in such a slump. Every time I pick up a book I’ll get a couple of chapters in and then put it down because I’m just not feeling it. I’m hoping that when A Court of Wings and Ruins comes out next month that it will pull me out of this funk. I’m so excited about that book. I loved ACOTAR and ACOMAF so I hope I’ll love this one too.

I haven’t ever had a reading slump last this long before, what do you like to do to get out of reading slumps? Am I the only one with slumps that last multiple months?

Aside from the reading slump. April has been a pretty good month. I’ve been failing Camp NaNo, by like a lot. But I’m trying to let that go. This middle grade book has been way harder to write than expected.

I’m super excited about a blog post I hope to have up next week. I’ve been working on this post for literally weeks and I finally got all the stuff together for it this weekend. I hope you guys will like it.

Also, I’m working on cleaning out my book shelves today. I’m hoping that looking at all of them and moving them around will help me get excited about reading again.

 

Camp NaNoWriMo April 2017

You guys have no clue how excited I am for Camp NaNo tomorrow. I’m excited for several reasons.

  1. I won Camp NaNo in April last year. It’s the only one that I haven’t failed miserably at. I think April is just a good month for me,
  2. I haven’t written anything in months. And by that I mean I haven’t written a single paragraph. I’ve written some blog posts here and there but aside from that I’ve done nothing.
  3. I am going to be starting a whole new project.

I’m mostly excited about that last one. I’m actually going to be writing a middle grade novel, hopefully the first one in a whole series. I won’t go into specifics about this because I’m over possessive of my ideas and I worry about sharing anything publicly about them. Not because I really think any one would steal it but mostly because I don’t want criticism when I’m not ready for it. I’m still working out a lot of the plot for my novel but I feel like I have my characters pretty well figured out.

So far I’m not sure what my word count is going to end up being. Right now I left my goal at 50K but I keep thinking about moving it down to 25K since it’s middle grade and my first attempt.

Are you doing Camp NaNo in April? If so good luck and happy writing!

North Texas Teen Book Festival 2017

This month I went to NTTBF for the third time. This year I brought some of my nieces with me and we had a lot of fun.

We knew that we would need to be in line super early in order to get a wrist band to meet Veronica Roth so we decided to spend the night in Grapevine the night before. That night we went through the panel list and picked our top three for each hour so that we would have a back up plan in case our first pick was full. The next morning we got up bright and early at 5:00. We drove thru Chick-fil-a for breakfast (their chicken minis are the best) and we got in line at 7:00.  I was afraid this was going to be too early but it wasn’t. There was already a line formed when we got there. It was a little windy and cold but in the end we got our wrist bands.

When we got in the building things were already buzzing. The publisher tables were packed so we decided to stop at them later. We went to Swag Shop and I got one of the last limited edition dated t-shirts. I couldn’t believe that they sold out of them as fast as they did.

After we got our shirts we went straight to our first panel (two whole hours early). We wanted to make sure that we got good seats and everything was so crazy it was easier to sit and wait. If I had been on my own I might have braved it, but no one else had gone before and they were a little over whelmed.

After our first panel we split up in groups. I went with one of the girls to a Swoon Reads thing that we thought was going to be a writers workshop but it wasn’t. It was still fun though they talked about how they publish books and you could vote on covers for books. They also had a candy bar and a thing were you could write a ten word story and they might tweet it. We had some time to kill so we went to the publisher tables. They were out of a lot of the things they had to give out but we did get a tote bag and because I was already a member of First In Line I got an ARC that I’m super excited to read.

After that I went to a panel about writing a middle grade series and I learned so much more than I thought I would.  After that panel we all went and got pretzels and bought some books. We took the last panel slot off and got in the signing line. 

The first line I got in was to meet John Corey Whaley (author of Highly Illogical Behavior).

I also met a bunch of middle grade authors to get books signed for my class.

After that we got in line to meet Veronica Roth. The line was long but it was worth it, she took time to talk to you even though I’m sure she was tired from signing books for two hours.

All in all, it was a great day. I can’t wait to go again next year.

 

Because You’ll Never Meet Me By Leah Thomas

I got this book off of BookOutlet when they had their Booktoberfest sale. I thought the cover was pretty and the title intrigued me. I didn’t read the summary (I rarely do these days), so I was a little disappointment when this didn’t end up being a romance. However, I did love the friendship between the two guys develop and I got over my disappointment pretty quickly.

Summary:

Ollie and Moritz are best friends, but they can never meet. Ollie is allergic to electricity. Contact with it causes debilitating seizures. Moritz’s weak heart is kept pumping by an electronic pacemaker. If they ever did meet, Ollie would seize. But Moritz would die without his pacemaker. Both hermits from society, the boys develop a fierce bond through letters that become a lifeline during dark times—as Ollie loses his only friend, Liz, to the normalcy of high school and Moritz deals with a bully set on destroying him.

Goodreads

Favorite things:

Their voices. I was so impressed by how distinctly different Ollie’s voice was from Moritzs. In fact this book is one of the few I’ve read from dual POVS, that actually sounded like dual POVS. You have Ollie who is funny, energetic and just sort of goofy and brilliant. Then we have Moritz who is down right mean at times. He’s moody and kind of rough around the edges but it’s not like he doesn’t have a reason to be.

The format. You guys know I love books written in different formats. This one was written entirely in letters and I loved that.

The medical sci-fi stuff. I really wish I could read more about all of the other experiments and more of what went on at the lab in general.*

Some favorite quotes:

“Nosebleeds = Friendship Maybe friends are drawn to bloodshed. You know. Like sharks”

“If you weren’t born screaming, then you were probably born with too much optimism.”

“Even if you are powerless, your words are not.”

The quills:

Cursing?

PG-13. This book does have the f word but instead of using the actual word it had a subsiture word, fluffing. I found this to be pretty funny in some situations .

Physical romance?

Nope.

Gore?

Not a whole lot, but there was a paragraph about a dead mouse that made me cringe.

Will you cry?

I did a little bit towards the end, but I’m extra sensitive to the situation that was happening.

Overall rating?

Three out of five hedgehogs.

The Author:

Leah Thomas, she doesn’t have a website that I could find but she does seem to be pretty active on her Goodreads page.

 

* I found out after writing this review that there is a sequel that just came out in February called Nowhere Near You and I think it will go into more of this exact thing. I’m pretty excited to read it and see if it does or not.

 

How do you feel when authors mash genres together? Like in this case I feel like this book was mostly contemporary but with a big dash of sci-fi. Do you know of any other books that do this?

 

Photo source

Twenty One Pilots Book Tag

I have been slightly obsessed with Twenty One Pilots for about a year now. In fact I’m so obsessed that I went to see them in concert a couple of weeks ago. The concert was amazing. I hope they come back to Texas next year so I can see them again.

When I saw this book tag on Youtube I just had to do it.  Please go check out the original video here on Booktube Girl’s channel.
Questions:

Stressed Out: What is a popular book that you have wanted to read for a long time that everyone has been talking about?

Throne of Glass. Everyone is always talking about these books, I just hope they live up to my expectations when I finally get around to reading them.

Car Radio: Name a book that contained issues you felt connected to on a personal level.

For this one I have to go with Since You’ve been Gone. I could really connect with all of the friendship problems.

Ride: Name a book that you wanted to never end.

The Mocking Jay. I loved the Hunger Games trilogy, finishing that last book made me so sad. I wasn’t ready for it to all end.

Holding on to You: What is a book/series that you have loved since your childhood

I’ve got two answers for this one The Lily Series by Nancy Rue, or Junie B. Jones by Barbra Park. I have fond memories of hunting for the next books and being so excited about getting to read them.

Tear in my Heart: Name a book that made you feel all the emotions.

A Court of Mist and Fury, hands down. This book was amazing, which is partially why I can never finish the review for it.

Fairly Local – What is your personal favorite underground book/series?

I loved Partials by Dan Wells, but I can’t find anyone else who has read them. I hope to reread them one day because the world building was amazing (from what I remember anyway).

Ode to Sleep – Name a book that was full of twists and turns and kept you on the edge of your seat.

A Court of Thorns and Roses, mainly because I didn’t want to use ACOMAF again. I liked this book a lot too, and I had no clue how everything would go down.

Goner – What is a book character that you fell in love with from the beginning?

This one is a hard one, but I’m gonna go with Cassie from The 5th Wave.

Migraine – What is one book that gave you a headache to read?

Paper Towns by John Green. I will spare you from a rant and instead link you to my review of it here.

We Don’t Believe What’s On TV – What is a book that you love that most people seem to hate?

The Hobbit. To be fair when I read it, it was because I had to read it for school so that may have had something to do with it. I really should go back and give them a second chance.

I had such a great time at the concert, I couldn’t stop myself from adding in a couple of the pictures I took even thought they aren’t high quality.

I don’t know of anyone else who likes Twenty-One Pilots but if you do feel free to do this tag and then comment with a link to it because I would love to check it out.

If you listen to Twenty-One Pilots, what is your favorite song? Guns for Hands, Holding on to You, Forests, Kitchen Sink, and Migraine, are some of my favorites.