Book Reviews








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Book reviews:

*May contain a spoiler*


All the Bright Places is a YA  book about mental illness. After reading it, I saw lots of mixed reviews about how they should have put a warning on  the book, "This is NOT a book for people suffering from depression, but it is a book for people who have friends suffering from depression."  That said, the two main characters in the book spoke like a Dawson's Creek character, meaning they spoke so well and in a way that was not most realistic to two high school students.  It was not my most fave of all the YA books that I have read this summer, but certainly not the worst either.  And Dakota Fanning's little sister will play the title role in this movie set to come out next year.

The Outliers; Hardcover; Author - Kimberly McCreight


The Outliers was a young adult book that seriously, maybe 6/8ths of the book was so good.  (I read it as did my mom in under two days!)  But well it took a turn towards the end and it went into what the heck territory.  The book was about a girl who is a homebody (legit doesn't leave her house EVER) and her bff gets ''taken.''  The BFF contacts both her bf and the homebody girl to help find her.  Most of the story takes place as they look for the friend.  It is a trilogy and the end definitely leaves you hanging.  The second book maybe okay but I doubt this will be a trilogy I'll be able to read all three. The characters were likable and I was invested in the story until the end and I was like meh really??


Product Details
Saint Anything-  High-school easy read that wasn't overly interesting.  Slow story and kind of lengthy.  I did still finish it but was not interested in how any of the characters ended up TBH.  I did NOT recommend it to mom to read, but the love story was meh but there was one funny part where a pizza delivered and they tried to guess who will be on other side of door from that said order.




Image result for we were liarsWe Were Liars-  Another high school easy read.  This one was short and had a twist that I had to really TRY to not skip to the end to find out what happened.  I wanted to know what happened but I was not invested in any of the characters.  Three were very rich spoiled brats and one was poor kid that spent summers together.  Like most YA reads there is a love story, but kinda a terrible one.  Once I got to the end, I was like oooh, and it was a much better book after the story unfolded.


Image result for three wishesThree Wishes- SLOW but I did read it all.  Was disappointed because I have come to be a HUGE LM fan.  It is set in Austrilia like all her others and has very similar themes that she uses time and time again.  They work for her so why change?  This one started out with a bang and I was like oh, this will be GREAT.  But it was the ending first, and then flashed back.  The build up, was real slow in the perspective of triple sisters.










Last Anniversary- WHAT???! Two bad LM books in a row????!!! What the heck??! I did NOT finish this one.  I will not even bother to put a picture on this one.  DB (mom) did read it all though, she agreed with how slow it was.  Good grief.


Napkin Notes

Napkin Notes- Easy read and non fiction.  I read in two days and the first day, I was way more into it. If possible read in one and enjoyment factor is higher.  SPOILER ALERT: Happy ending for all my friends that read the back, its okay.  I made sure it was a happy ending and now I follow the author on IG!  It is about dad who wrote napkin notes in his daughters lunch.  He found out he was sick and then she showed him that she saved them all.  CUTE right?!  Motto was Pack, Write, and Connect. (Pack a lunch, write a note, and connect with a loved one)  Great concept and easy way to make people know you care.  A lot of back story about this man and his health that may be too much for somebody if they have lost anybody recently.




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This is Where it Ends-  School shooting YA book and I read it right before the Orlando shooting.  It was quick read and I was interested in it.  It was told from 4 different perspectives and with flashbacks and the 20 minutes of the day of the shooting.  It is well written and the characters I cared about.  The book was set in a small town where everybody knows everybody else's business so if one person is killed it touches all.  Showed how this one mass killing affected so many lives.  (I would not have read post Orlando shooting, DB wouldn't read now, but it was a good book.)







Second Life-  I couldn't get into this one at all.  I read 60 pages and then was like ehh, Reese Witherspoon you have lead me down a path of a bad book recommendation???!! NOOOO!  It was set in Europe (main character traveled to two different countries), and as a proper American I do not get into books as easily if they are set abroad.  (Yes, no Bridget Jones for me and I am surprised I like the Austrian books that LM writes but here I am).  My mom however, LOVED it and said it was a page turner until the the very last paragraph that she was very unhappy with.  She told me the story and I was like huh, that would probably have been a good book.  DB recommended and myself errrr no.





Image result for in a dark dark woodI liked this one a lot surprisingly because it was set in England somewhere and I usually not into BritLit.  A group of girls and one gay guy were at hen (bachlorette party, I knew this lingo from The Wedding Date) out in the middle of the woods.  There is a mystery aspect that, well I thought was going to be BIGGER but this seemed to be fitting for the story.  It was a very easy read and part that I liked was the main character was invited to the hen but not to the wedding. This has happened to me on more than one occasion and find it interesting every time.  In this characters case, her ex is the husband to be, that has never been case in my situations.  I recommend this one.  I predicted ending halfway through without cheating and was quite proud of myself here.



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Everything Everything was a VERY quick read that I enjoyed.  It is a YA book and has short chapters that I finished reading one day just chilling on porch with a morning coffee.  Book has a very lifetime movie network feel to it.  I had some emotions post reading that made me need to recollect myself before meeting up with manfriend and his friends but isn't that what a good book is suppose to do?  My mom gets the books after me and she figured out the ending by reading the dust jacket.  That being said, some books/movies you read even though you will guess it because the ride could be fun.  This was one of those.



Oh I LOVE this one.  Love Letters to the Dead was very dark YA book, my fave.  The main character is freshman in highschool who just lost her sister.  As a death in your immediate family does, it shakes up their own family unit.  The book is written in letter format to famous dead known people who mostly committed suicide (OD for the most part, knowingly or unknowingly).  The main girl, Laurel goes through all the trials and tribulations of a normal coming of age story AND throw in the death of her best-friend and sister.  The author wrote smart and still on a level that, yeah a 15 year old COULD really be saying this.  I quoted this book a lot, AND read in less than a weekend!







Finally a Moriarty book that is good again.  After 2 duds, I was questioning how much did I really like her?  She uses her same themes and her writing from different point of views in Big Little Lies.  It is not on par wit Husband's Secret or Truly Madly Guilty, but it was still enjoyable.  I was able to guess the ''big reveal'' but I enjoyed how she got there.  The story was set around 6 adults at an afternoon bbq, at times it was kinda slow but I cared about what was going on with the characters which only happens with deep multiple dimensional people.




I gave this one a LONG time to get good, because I read great reviews from people who loved it, and the synopsis seemed interesting.  But nope, Look at Me, was so slow and bored me.  I read about 60 pages of it and luckily I was at the pool so I got a tan and didn't waste my time.  But meh, did not score very high on my recommendation list.









All is Not Forgotten was GREAT.  I highly recommend it as a fast paced thriller that I totally cheated at the end to find out what happened.  When I was about halfway through, I thought, "Oh man, if this happens, this will be a shitty book."  This (whatever that was in my mind), did not happen so I was able to finish up and enjoy.  Okay what is it about?  A small town there is a family with a high-school girl and two parents (there is a sibling but nobody cares about them).  Well girl gets raped and parents choose to erase her memory of what happened that night.  Well she goes to a psychologist because she is having issues because ALL IS NOT FORGOTTEN.  They also this this memory erase to a service man that was in a war zone and didn't work completely on him either.  (I asked a marine friend if this was a legit thing and he kinda laughed at me.)  Story is told from many different perceptions and I can say that I thoroughly savored the ride that Walker wove.


READ this before it comes on the big screen.  It was a deliciously written thriller that was set across the pond.  (The movie will be set in NY so they will change some things ((per EW))  The book started off slow but it really takes charge.  Rachel is an alcoholic who's husband left her for another woman.  She lost her job but continues to ride the train into town (where she used to work) and back every day at the same times as she would have if she worked.  She passes where she used to live with the husband, and watches a young couple through the train windows.  She makes up stories about the happy young couple until something happens to one of them.  She gets involved with the police and doesn't have the best track record.  It is a great quick read and the heroin is a very complex and gritty character that  I am very excited to see Emily Blunt play on the big screen.






Okay, Flowers for Algernon, I really wanted to LOVE this book but I just really couldn't.  I loved how it was written from Charlie's point of view and when he started it was written with his current writing style.  (Started and his IQ was 68.)  I have worked with MANY kids/adults with special needs, and some reviews dissed how it was written because it was hard to read.  I think that helped me "see" his growth.  That was one of my favorite parts. What growth?  Charlie is in an experiment to make him smart.  It works on a mouse (Algernon) and Charlie befriends the mouse he can't beat in a maze.  Once Charlie gets smart, he realizes his friends were not friends but people who made fun of him.  The mouse gets very sick and Charlie has to wonder will this now happen to me?



Oh Susan, I LOVE your little sports related romantic (comedy) chick lit books.  She has written a LOT about the Chicago Stars (fictitious football team) and this here has a retired player in it also.  Like all of her books, I ate this one right up.  It was not my favorite, I have two of hers that I have read and reread, but it was still a delightfully fun read.  Graham is the former football player and Piper the PI.  She follows him, he catches her, and from there she then works for him.  He has a night club that is running into a lot of issues and she helps him figure out what is going on, and obviously they will also fall into romance while working together.  It is mindless and fun.  Her characters are always well developed and you will likely LOL a few times.






You Will Know Me, is a book about the close knit community of elite gymnastics.  That and how it all crumbles when inside of that said community there is a death/murder.  Well huh, that sounds GREAT but in reality, it was not.  That is a huge bummer because with Olympics over, I thought This is right up my ally.  Sadly, I could figure out who was the killer, and I just didn't care.  I wanted so much more from this book that wasn't give to me.  Le sigh






This is a child lit book that no joke took me 30 minutes to read as I was walking on the treadmill.  It is okay.  It did not hold my interest, but if you knew a child was in a BIG family this may be one that they could relate to.  It is a super easy read and there is a death that happens.  I could MAYBE see using this in a classroom setting because it is set up in chapters that are maybe three pages and all easy read, but with no pictures it appears like it is more ''on a grade level."  I wanted something a little extra from this, but could definitely use it as a class material.




I LOVED this book.  The low down, a guy was a football player and got hit real bad.  It was a hit that changed his life forever.  How?  He couldn't forget anything, ever.  He also saw things in colors and numbers would randomly appear.  His personality changed and he now seemed like he was kind of on the spectrum.  Well, he turned into a cop and moved up the ladder to detective rather quickly, with his newly acquired skills.  Think about NEVER forgetting anything.  He remember every book he had ever read, every article, every person's name, etc... Well, his wife and child were murdered and he lost it.  A school shooting then goes down in his town and he gets roped into helping in a strange way that could only happen in a book/movie/tvs show.  The thriller was a page turner and I enjoyed it rather quickly.  FINALLY, I found a good book again, I was getting bummed with all the meh nonsense I was reading.



Before I Fall, is a YA book about death.  YA books all seem to be about death or a dystonia society these days.  The main character was a bitchy mean popular girl.  Her life is easy and you go through the same day of her life seven times.  It is like groundhog day of a WASP high-school student.  Everyday is slightly different and I won't lie, I really enjoyed the book until the very end.  I wanted something else to happen as an ending and I as a reader did not get what I wanted.  The main character showed a lot of growth and she did grow more likable as the book went on.   This will be made into a movie starring Zac Efron's love interest girl from Dirty Grandpa.  


The rest either were NOT at the library or I am still on a waiting list for.

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