Posted in Books, Reviews

Luckiest Girl Alive – Jessica Knoll || Book REVIEW

So I’d heard this book described as a mix between a thriller and Gossip Girl and I love both of those things, so I picked it up ASAP! Did I love it? Let’s find out!

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HER PERFECT LIFE IS A PERFECT LIE.

As a teenager at the prestigious Bradley School, Ani FaNelli endured a shocking, public humiliation that left her desperate to reinvent herself. Now, with a glamorous job, expensive wardrobe, and handsome blue blood fiancé, she’s this close to living the perfect life she’s worked so hard to achieve.

But Ani has a secret.

There’s something else buried in her past that still haunts her, something private and painful that threatens to bubble to the surface and destroy everything.

With a singular voice and twists you won’t see coming, Luckiest Girl Alive explores the unbearable pressure that so many women feel to “have it all” and introduces a heroine whose sharp edges and cutthroat ambition have been protecting a scandalous truth, and a heart that’s bigger than it first appears.

The question remains: will breaking her silence destroy all that she has worked for—or, will it at long last, set Ani free?  — Goodreads

Rating – R (Language, violence, EXTREME TRIGGER WARNING!!! Sexual assault, abuse, substance abuse, eating disorders, and mental illness)

Length – 352 pages

Publication Date – 5 / 12 / 15


The Good :

  • I found parts of this book super interesting, especially the part where we saw Ani’s adult life. Maybe it was the glitz and glamour, but I just loved that aspect. I also enjoy parts of her life in her new school, again because of the glamour of it all. I bet y’all can see what my guilty pleasure is.
  • This was obviously satirical, and I loved that about it! It’s not too often that I stumble across a satire, so it was a welcome change.
  • I felt like the characters were authentic in a way that honestly made me a little uncomfortable. It was impressive, really.
  • Honestly the ending was really satisfying and made me like the book better as a whole.

The Meh :

  • There was a very graphic abusive relationship, in this book, that included a rape in detail. While I understand why it was in the book, it really disturbed and distracted me when reading the rest of the book.
  • I could see the “plot twist”, at the end of the book, from a mile away. Pretty much from the first 100 pages I knew where the entire book was going.

The Bad :

  • The book is marketed as a thriller,  but I think that was the wrong move because  was literally never thrilled. I think it would have been a better move to market it as lit-fic or satire.

  • STORY – 3.5/5 (I expected it to be a better thriller but all the twists and turns were pretty predictable. It was a good precautionary tale for those who will do anything to fit in.)
  • CHARACTERS – 3.5/5 (they were all so unlikable in a way that was just WAY too authentic. Like I don’t know too many book that had more believable characters than this one, but still…so unlikable)
  • WRITING– 3/5 (it was ok. Nothing spectacular but not insulting)
  • UNIQUENESS – 3.5/5 (I haven’t read a book quite like this before but I have read many books about upperclass New Yorkers (even if this was supposed to be satire))
  • ENJOYMENT  – 4/5 (I found this book super interesting. I thought the present parts were a little more interesting than the past but it didn’t bother me much.)

ALL IN ALL I RATE THIS 3.5 SEASHELL FRAMES OUT OF 5!

Have you read this book? What did you think about it? I’d love to know!

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of The Unexpected Everything – Morgan Matson HERE!

 

Posted in Books, Reviews

The Unexpected Everything – Morgan Matson || Book REVIEW

BLOG UPDATE  – I added a new category to my rating system called “enjoyment”. I feel like I have been trying so hard to rate critically, but I want to include if I liked it or not despite writing or story….so here we go!

I’ve been meaning to pick up Matson’s work for years now and was finally in the mood for a cushy contemporary. Did I love it as much as I thought I would? Let’s find out!

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Andie had it all planned out. When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future. Important internship? Check. Amazing friends? Check. Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks).

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life. Because here’s the thing—if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected. And where’s the fun in that? — Goodreads

Rating – PG13 ( Some sexual innuendos, some language, some teen partying)

Length – 519 pages

Publication date – 5 / 3 / 16


The Good :

  • The thing I liked most about this was the smallness of the story. Going in I thought it was going to be a cute romance on top of a mystery about who framed Andie’s dad or something, but it wasn’t. It was just about this ordinary girl’s summer after her plans were changed. I love that.
  • Most of the characters were really likable and relatable. I was seriously Toby when I was in high school and felt for her the entire time. (Hopeless romantics for the win amiright?)
  • Clark! CLARK! ClArK! cLaRk! I seriously loved him. I think he’s the first love interest I could actually see myself dating in real life! That’s a big deal for me.
  • I loved the father/ daughter relationship, in this book. Some things actually really reminded me of my dad and I, so I guess it was appropriate for Father’s Day.
  • At first the inclusion of emojis were kind of annoying to me, but as they became an essential part of the story, I found them fun.
  • MILD SPOILER!!!! – I really enjoyed that not all the conflicts weren’t wrapped up with a pretty bow. It made the story seem all that more realistic, in the end.

The Meh :

  • The writing was honestly just so average. Like it was equivalent to watching an entertaining, but not at all impressive chick flick. I just  wanted to be challenged a little more, I guess.
  • I thought the excerpts of Clark’s books were boring and honestly annoying. Like I just wanted to continue with the actual story not read from something that was barely relevant.

The Bad :

  • The liar revealed plot line made me want to rip my hair out! I hate that plot and I hate that when main characters  come across this dilemma they literally ruin EVERYTHING! Like just skip it please.
  • I didn’t really like Andie’s character and that’s an issue when we literally follow her around the entire time.
  • There weren’t enough dogs, ok? I saw like 10 dogs on the cover I thought there were going to be a million dogs, in the story.

 

  • STORY – 4/5 (I enjoyed that this story was small. No mystery or craziness just. I also loved the family dynamic and also the true friendship involved)
  • CHARACTERS – 4/5 (they felt really realistic. Like I WAS Toby in high school. Also Clark is my boyfriend and there is nothing you can do about it.)
  • WRITING – 3.5/5 (it wasn’t bad but I wasn’t impressed)
  • UNIQUENESS – 4/5 (the love interest being an author was interesting. Also I like the inclusion of emojis.)
  • ENJOYMENT – 4.5/5 (I seriously loved this but docked half a point because of the liar revealed plot line.)

ALL IN ALL I GIVE THIS 4 LONG OVERDUE SEQUELS OUT OF 5!

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? I’d love to know!

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of Dark Matter – Blake Crouch HERE!

 

Posted in Books, Reviews

Dark Matter – Black Crouch || REVIEW

So I heard a lot of great things about this book, about a year ago, and also haven’t read Sci-Fy in a long time. So did I enjoy it? Let’s find out!

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“Are you happy with your life?”

Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious.

Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits.

Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.”

In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible.

Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe.

From the author of the bestselling Wayward Pines trilogy, Dark Matter is a brilliantly plotted tale that is at once sweeping and intimate, mind-bendingly strange and profoundly human—a relentlessly surprising science-fiction thriller about choices, paths not taken, and how far we’ll go to claim the lives we dream of.

Rating – PG13 (Some intense scenes)

Length – 342 pages

Publication Date – 7 / 26 / 16


The Good :

  • It was a good premise. I was really intrigued by the synopsis and first 30 pages, but then……

 

The Meh :

  • Honestly everything about this book was just meh. I actually had a hard time getting myself to write this review because I don’t even have anything to say about it.
  • The characters were so bland, and this book really depended on you caring about them. The main character was just boring, his family was just a standard “care about me” book family, and there was another random chick and like why was she there?

The Bad :

  • This books plot was very centered on scientific theories, but the science was NEVER EXPLAINED! Tell me more please!! I’m still so annoyed about this.
  • The end was just…strange. They made me sympathetic for the “antagonists” to the point of not enjoying the outcome of the book.

  • STORY – 3.5/5 (I enjoyed it but there were so many plot holes)
  • CHARACTERS – 3/5 (OK)
  • WRITING – 3/5 (OK)
  • UNIQUENESS – 3.5/5 (I feel like I’ve heard this story before

ALL IN ALL I GAVE THIS BOOK 3.25 ALTERNATE DIMENSIONS OUT OF 5!

 

So sorry that this review is short…I just really didn’t have anything to say. I was so disappointed by this book, honestly.

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my May Wrap Up HERE!

 

Posted in Wrap Ups/TBR

MAY WRAP UP!

May was the best reading month that I have had sense I was in MIDDLE SCHOOL! Seriously I’m so proud of myself.

Stats –

  • I read 7 (!!) books this month! Out of those books there were –

0 – ★

0 – ★★

2 – ★★★

3 – ★★★★

2 – ★★★★★

  • Monthly Avg. Rating – 4 stars

 

  • 5 books I read in physical copies / 2 were E-Books
  • 2 physical books were library copies / 3 I owned.
  • I read 1 book for review.
  • I read 1 book for the Gore and More Book Club.

 

  • Altogether I read 2,726 (+ Devil’s Call because it doesn’t have a page count).

 

  • 3 books were adult Horror novels.
  • 1 book was an adult Mystery.
  • 2 books were Lit Fic.
  • 1 book was a Historical Fantasy.

 

Your House Is on Fire, Your Children All Gone – Stefan Kiesbye // REVIEW

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The village of Hemmersmoor is a place untouched by time and shrouded in superstition: There is the grand manor house whose occupants despise the villagers, the small pub whose regulars talk of revenants, the old mill no one dares to mention. This is where four young friends come of age—in an atmosphere thick with fear and suspicion. Their innocent games soon bring them face-to-face with the village’s darkest secrets in this eerily dispassionate, astonishingly assured novel, evocative of Stephen King’s classic short story “Children of the Corn” and infused with the spirit of the Brothers Grimm.

Finished Reading – 5 / 2 / 17

Rating – 3.4 Creepy Kids out of 5!

  • Favorite Part – The creepy tone and the writing!
  • Least Favorite Part – The lack of an overarching narrative.

 

The Vegetarian – Han Kang // REVIEW

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Before the nightmares began, Yeong-hye and her husband lived an ordinary, controlled life. But the dreams invasive images of blood and brutality torture her, driving Yeong-hye to purge her mind and renounce eating meat altogether. It s a small act of independence, but it interrupts her marriage and sets into motion an increasingly grotesque chain of events at home. As her husband, her brother-in-law and sister each fight to reassert their control, Yeong-hye obsessively defends the choice that s become sacred to her. Soon their attempts turn desperate, subjecting first her mind, and then her body, to ever more intrusive and perverse violations, sending Yeong-hye spiraling into a dangerous, bizarre estrangement, not only from those closest to her, but also from herself.

Celebrated by critics around the world, The Vegetarian is a darkly allegorical, Kafka-esque tale of power, obsession, and one woman s struggle to break free from the violence both without and within her.

Finished Reading – 5 / 9 / 17

Rating – 4.1 Painted Bodies out of 5!

  • Favorite Part  – A great ode to mental illness and it was deeply unsettling!
  • Least Favorite Part – I didn’t care about characters.

Devil’s Call – J. Danielle Dorn // REVIEW

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On a dark night in the winter of 1859, three men entered the home of Dr. Matthew Callahan and shot him dead in front of his pregnant wife. Unfortunately for them, his wife, Li Lian, hails from a long line of women gifted in the dark arts–the witches of the McPherson clan.
This diary, written to the child she carries, records her quest from the Nebraska Territory to Louisiana to the frozen shore of Lake Superior, to bring justice to the monsters responsible for shooting her husband in the back. Our long-rifled witch will stop at nothing​–​and risk everything​–​in her showdown with evil.

Finished Reading – 5 / 17 / 17

Rating – 3.4 Witches out of 5!

  • Favorite Part  – Loved the witches and their lore.
  • Least Favorite Part – I had a hard time following the story.

 

Flowers for Algernon – Daniel Keyes

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With more than five million copies sold, Flowers for Algernon is the beloved classic story of a mentally disabled man whose experimental quest for intelligence mirrors that of Algernon, an extraordinary lab mouse. In poignant diary entries, Charlie tells how a brain operation increases his IQ and changes his life. As the experimental procedure takes effect, Charlie’s intelligence expands until it surpasses that of the doctors who engineered his metamorphosis. The experiment seems to be a scientific breakthrough of paramount importance until Algernon begins his sudden, unexpected deterioration. Will the same happen to Charlie?

Finished Reading – 5 / 17 / 17

Rating – 5 Genius Rats out of 5!

  • Favorite Part – The story and characters were so genuine and heartbreaking.
  • Least Favorite Part – NOTHING 5/5 STARS

 

Night Film – Marisha Pessl

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Everybody has a Cordova story. Cult horror director Stanislas Cordova hasn’t been seen in public since 1977. To his fans he is an enigma. To journalist Scott McGrath he is the enemy. To Ashley he was a father.

On a damp October night the body of young, beautiful Ashley Cordova is found in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Her suicide appears to be the latest tragedy to hit a severely cursed dynasty.

For McGrath, another death connected to the legendary director seems more than a coincidence. Driven by revenge, curiosity and a need for the truth, he finds himself pulled into a hypnotic, disorientating world, where almost everyone seems afraid.

The last time McGrath got close to exposing Cordova, he lost his marriage and his career. This time he could lose his grip on reality.

ONCE WE FACE OUR DEEPEST FEARS, WHAT LIES ON THE OTHER SIDE?

Finished  – 5 / 25 / 17

Rating  – 4.8 Cordova Films out of 5!

  • Favorite Part – How easily the real world intertwined with the fiction of this book.
  • Least Favorite Part – The tone was not as dark as I hoped.

 

We Came Back – Patrick Lacey // REVIEW

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Growing up dead.

Melvin Brown sees things that aren’t there. Monsters with tentacles and razor-sharp teeth. Ever the social outcast, he is bullied to the point of suicide. And his hatred of those who did him wrong does not die with him.

One decade after Melvin’s death, something strange is happening to Lynnwood High School’s smartest and most popular students. They begin to act out and spend time at the former high school, now abandoned and said to be haunted. And their numbers grow at an alarming rate.

Is this just a passing fad or are the rumors true? Does Lynnwood really have a teenage cult on their hands?

Finished  – 5 / 28 / 17

Rating  –  4.1 Cameras out of 5!

  • Favorite Part – The realistic characters and story line!
  • Least Favorite Part – The writing was very average.

 

IT – Stephen King

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Welcome to Derry, Maine. It’s a small city, a place as hauntingly familiar as your own hometown. Only in Derry the haunting is real.

They were seven teenagers when they first stumbled upon the horror. Now they are grown-up men and women who have gone out into the big world to gain success and happiness. But the promise they made twenty-eight years ago calls them reunite in the same place where, as teenagers, they battled an evil creature that preyed on the city’s children. Now, children are being murdered again and their repressed memories of that terrifying summer return as they prepare to once again battle the monster lurking in Derry’s sewers.

Finished  – 5 / 31 / 17

Rating – 5 Pennywise the Clowns out of 5!

  • Favorite Part  – EVERYTHING THIS IS MY FAVORITE BOOK EVER!
  • Least Favorite Part – NOTHING THIS IS MY FAVORITE BOOK EVER!

 

And that was it for the month of May! I think I did really well! What was your favorite book of the month? I’d love to know!

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of We Came Back – Patrick Lacey HERE!

 

Posted in Books, Gore n' More, Reviews

We Came Back – Patrick Lacey || Gore and More Book REVIEW

SIDE NOTE – If you love horror you NEED to join the Gore and More bookclub, on Goodreads. Not only do you get to find under the radar books, but you also get to interact with the authors. It’s a pretty awesome experience, especially for book bloggers.

This was the Gore and More  pick of the month and as we know I haven’t had the best luck with, in the last few months. Did I enjoy this one more? Let’s find out!

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“WE CAME BACK is an emotional trip through our darkest fears. One of the best books I’ve read in years.”–Kristopher Rufty, author of SOMETHING VIOLENT and DESOLATION.

Growing up dead.

Melvin Brown sees things that aren’t there. Monsters with tentacles and razor-sharp teeth. Ever the social outcast, he is bullied to the point of suicide. And his hatred of those who did him wrong does not die with him.

One decade after Melvin’s death, something strange is happening to Lynnwood High School’s smartest and most popular students. They begin to act out and spend time at the former high school, now abandoned and said to be haunted. And their numbers grow at an alarming rate.

Is this just a passing fad or are the rumors true? Does Lynnwood really have a teenage cult on their hands? — Goodreads

Rating – R (Gore, Intense scene, Some sex, TRIGGER WARNING – SUICIDE)

Length – 366 pages

Publication Date – 4 / 15 / 17


The Good :

  • I felt like the characters were really realistic. I felt like everyone acted like ACTUAL PEOPLE! It also impressed me that we got an array perspectives from many different age groups. Some were from the perspectives of 17 year olds, some were from the perspectives of teachers (will talk about this later), and we even got the perspective of the monster.
  • Speaking of the teachers, I really liked how they were handled. I feel like in most books teachers are a role model or are complete jerks but in this case the teachers were actual people, if you can believe it.
  • I felt like everything actually made sense, in this book. A lot of times, in horror novels, I feel like the actions the characters take are not what people actually do, but what would help the plot along. In this, I never doubted that the characters’ actions were authentic.
  • The climax was really rewarding and surprising and I’m so glad it pleased me, because a bad climax will RUIN a book.

The Meh :

  • The writing was not bad…it just wasn’t great. Although it didn’t really bother me as I was reading, I try to review critically and I can’t just ignore this.

The Bad :

  • It pains me to say this, but I really felt like I’d seen this monster before. There were certain things that made him unique, but I literally read a book about tentacle monsters last month. I’m just tired of the premise I guess.

  • STORY – 4/5 (I was really surprised by how smoothly everything ran since the last few horror novels I read weren’t as great. I loved how everything the characters did made sense and it didn’t feel like their actions were just there to move along the plot. The monster was scary and so were his “minions”)
  • CHARACTERS – 4.5/5 (Every character felt realistic not matter what their age or situation. I really like the teacher perspective as well. You don’t usually see a teacher in a book who isn’t a jerk or a role model for another character. In this book they’re just normal people.)
  • WRITING – 4/5 (It wasn’t spectacular but it’s definitely not bad.)
  • UNIQUENESS – 4/5 ( I felt like I’d seen the monster before but in terms of how everything wrapped up, it was completely new and interesting to me.)

ALL IN ALL I GAVE THIS 4.1 CAMERAS OUT OF 5!

Have you read this? What did you think about it? What are your opinions on tentacle monsters?

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of Night Film – Marisha Pessl HERE!

Posted in Books, Reviews

Night Film – Marisha Pessl || Book REVIEW

Shout out to my fellow horror/thriller lover, Regina @ BookishinBed, who I buddy read this book with!

This is one of the most highly praised modern books, right now. On top of that the tone was supposedly very dark and disturbing, which I love! So, did it live up to all the hype? Let’s find out!

10112885

Everybody has a Cordova story. Cult horror director Stanislas Cordova hasn’t been seen in public since 1977. To his fans he is an enigma. To journalist Scott McGrath he is the enemy. To Ashley he was a father.

On a damp October night the body of young, beautiful Ashley Cordova is found in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Her suicide appears to be the latest tragedy to hit a severely cursed dynasty.

For McGrath, another death connected to the legendary director seems more than a coincidence. Driven by revenge, curiosity and a need for the truth, he finds himself pulled into a hypnotic, disorientating world, where almost everyone seems afraid.

The last time McGrath got close to exposing Cordova, he lost his marriage and his career. This time he could lose his grip on reality.

ONCE WE FACE OUR DEEPEST FEARS, WHAT LIES ON THE OTHER SIDE? — Goodreads

Rating – PG 13 (Some disturbing scenes, some language)

Publication Date – 9 / 20 / 13

Length – 602 pages


The Good :

  • By far the best part of this book was the mystery. Like wow. There were times when I was SURE I had figured the mystery out, but NO! It was so masterfully done. I definitely haven’t read a mystery that good since the last Agatha Christie book I read.
  • One of my favorite things about this book was the fact that parts of the book were obviously fictionalized but they were written seamlessly into the real world. There was never a moment that it took me out of the story because it was unrealistic.
  • We have talked about how I love when mysteries are told from the perspective of anyone that aren’t cops. So our main character was a journalist…so needless to say I enjoyed that.
  • Awhile back I mentioned, in my review of Becoming – Glenn Rolfe, that the inclusion of modern day technology really bothered me. In this book, however, I think it was used very well to help further the story along.
  • Obviously mixed media was awesome, but everyone already knows about that part of this book. It really made me feel like a lot of extra work and love was put into the book.

The Meh :

  • The writing was amazing, but every once in a while it seemed to drag. I would find myself being bored for 5-10 pages out of every 100 or so. It really wasn’t a huge issue, but I wish I had been hooked from beginning to end.
  • This book was slightly over hyped for me and that was really a shame. It wasn’t that everyone said it was amazing and it wasn’t, it was actually that people were talking about how dark and intense this book was, and I didn’t really feel like it was. I think I am just desensitized to dark, horror filled novels but if you are picking it up solely because the tone, you may not be happy with it.

The Bad :

  • My only issue was the characters. The main character was awesome and I enjoyed his female companion, but the male companion really bothered me. Other than him, I enjoyed the characters, but none really stuck out expect for a few.

 


  • STORY – 5/5 (seriously masterful. I haven’t been so perplexed by a mystery since reading my last Agatha Christie novel)
  • CHARACTERS – 4.5/5 (the characters were really my only small gripe. Our main characters male friend who helps him in the journey seemed like an easy out to all their problems and he really got on my nerves. Other than him everyone was fine but only a couple characters really stood out to me)
  • WRITING – 4.75/5 (At some points I felt like the writing made the story drag just a little. I sometimes just found myself bored for a couple pages. )
  • UNIQUENESS – 5/5 (you already know about the mixed media…but yeah it was fantastic)

ALL IN ALL I GIVE THIS 4.8 CORDOVA FILMS OUT OF 5

 

Have you read this? Which Cordova film do you want to watch ( I want to see Thumbscrew ) ?

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of Flowers for Algernon – Daniel Keyes HERE!

Posted in Books, Classics, Reviews

Flowers For Algernon – Daniel Keyes || Classic Book REVIEW

So, awhile back I said I would read one classic book a month and then directly after that I didn’t follow up with the challenge…oops.

So here I am, back on the wagon with my second classic of the year. Was this one worth the title? Let’s find out!

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With more than five million copies sold, Flowers for Algernon is the beloved classic story of a mentally disabled man whose experimental quest for intelligence mirrors that of Algernon, an extraordinary lab mouse. In poignant diary entries, Charlie tells how a brain operation increases his IQ and changes his life. As the experimental procedure takes effect, Charlie’s intelligence expands until it surpasses that of the doctors who engineered his metamorphosis. The experiment seems to be a scientific breakthrough of paramount importance until Algernon begins his sudden, unexpected deterioration. Will the same happen to Charlie? — Goodreads

Rating – R (Language, Disturbing images, Sexual scenes TRIGGER WARNING! ABUSE ) 

Publication Date – 4 / 59

Length – 216 pages


The Good –

  • Let’s get this out there right at the beginning. This book is HEARTBREAKING! This was so authentic and real. There were parts that I have had similar situations, in my own life.
  • The writing was fantastic. It is written in a letter format, from Charlie’s perspective. It starts out where Charlie can barely spell out his words and very gradually we see him beginning to spell correctly and use grammar and punctuation.
  • This book was very scientific, but not in a way where the reader get’s lost. I think this is because if we got lost Charlie would be also lost, in the beginning especially.
  • Towards the middle of the book, there is mounting fear as we see the rat, Algernon, following the path that Charlie will soon take, as well.
  • There is a love story, and honestly it’s so refreshing.

The Meh –

  • It was a little slow moving for my taste, in the beginning. It took me like half a week to get through the first 30 – 50 pages, but then I read the rest in like a day.

No Bad!


  • STORY – 5/5 (Such a real tale of progression and regression. It was haunting and sad to say the least)
  • CHARACTERS – 5/5 (Again is was so real. Every character was someone who you knew.
  • WRITING – 5/5 (Written in a journal format it starts with our main character writing with many spelling and grammar errors and then we are able to see his growth. It was just genius)
  • UNIQUENESS – 5/5 (everything mentioned made this a wholly unique book)

ALL IN ALL, I GIVE THIS 5 GENIUS RATS OUT OF 5!

 

Have you read this? What did you think about it? I’d love to know!

What classic should I read next month?

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of Devil’s Call – J. Danielle Dorn HERE!

Posted in netgalley, Reviews

Devil’s Call – J. Danielle Dorn || Netgalley REVIEW

I have been trying to reconcile my relationship with Netgalley (see my post about this HERE) recently and have been carefully searching books to request that I won’t DNF. This book was under horror (my favorite genre duh), about witches, and was a western setting so I was immediately intrigued. Did I enjoy it? Let’s find out!

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On a dark night in the winter of 1859, three men entered the home of Dr. Matthew Callahan and shot him dead in front of his pregnant wife. Unfortunately for them, his wife, Li Lian, hails from a long line of women gifted in the dark arts–the witches of the McPherson clan.
This diary, written to the child she carries, records her quest from the Nebraska Territory to Louisiana to the frozen shore of Lake Superior, to bring justice to the monsters responsible for shooting her husband in the back. Our long-rifled witch will stop at nothing​–​and risk everything​–​in her showdown with evil. — Goodreads

Rating – PG-13 (Some gore, some violence, some language)

Publication date – 6 / 18 / 17


The Good :

  • The witch aspect was interesting and since I don’t read much of this specific genre it was all pretty unique to me.
  • Since there are witches, I felt like the ways that the main characters got where they were going in a really interesting way.
  • I was afraid that the magic would feel like a cop out for the characters to get out of sticky situations, but these witches had a specific set of rules that prevented them of really using their magic to stay out of trouble.

The Meh :

  • So, one of the main reasons I picked up this book was the western setting to fill a hole while I’m not reading The Dark Tower series. If the author of this book hadn’t also read The Dark Tower series, I’ll drop dead because the similarities were so blatantly obvious. The main antagonist was called THE MAN IN BLACK FOR PETE’S SAKE! It was so distracting.
  • This book was marketed to me as a horror novel, but it was actually more along the lines of a fantasy or maybe even magical realism. This wasn’t a bad thing, but it also was pretty disappointing to me.
  • This book was written in letter format and sometimes I really like that format, but in this case it got really jumbled and confusing for me.
  • I only connected with one or two of the characters throughout the whole book which is always disappointing.

The Bad :

  • The beginning was SO slow. If you are friends with me on Goodreads you will have seen that I was bored through like 50% of this book and if I wasn’t so obsessed with not DNFing another Netgalley book, I would have put it down.
  • I honestly don’t even remember what happened at the end of the book and I just finished it like less than a week ago.
  • The main character is pregnant when she gets thrust into her journey and honestly pregnant main characters are starting to get old to me. In 2017 I have now read THREE books (this, Song of Susannah, and Bird Box) with this plot and it bothers me because I feel like it makes the climax so predictable.

  • STORY – 3/5 (I had a really hard time following the lore and it reminded me too much of The Gunslinger- Stephen King)
  • CHARACTERS – 3.5/5 (I did really like the main character and the man she traveled with. Other than them I had a hard time connecting with the characters)
  • WRITING – 3.5/5 (Was in a letter format but sometimes it became jumbled and confusing)
  • UNIQUENESS – 3.5/5 (pretty unique aside from the fact that it reminded me of The Gunslinger)

ALL IN ALL I GAVE THIS BOOK 3.4 WITCHES OUT OF 5!

 

What’s your favorite novel about witches? I’d love to know!

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of The Vegetarian – Han Kang HERE!

Posted in Books, Reviews

The Vegetarian – Han Kang (Translated by Deborah Smith) || Book REVIEW

I have been wanting to read The Vegetarian for AT LEAST over a year now. It covers mental illness and had been compared to The Yellow Wallpaper – Charlotte Perkins Gilman, which is one of my FAVORITE short stories ever. So , did it live up to all the hype? Let’s find out!

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Before the nightmare, Yeong-hye and her husband lived an ordinary life. But when splintering, blood-soaked images start haunting her thoughts, Yeong-hye decides to purge her mind and renounce eating meat. In a country where societal mores are strictly obeyed, Yeong-hye’s decision to embrace a more “plant-like” existence is a shocking act of subversion. And as her passive rebellion manifests in ever more extreme and frightening forms, scandal, abuse, and estrangement begin to send Yeong-hye spiraling deep into the spaces of her fantasy. In a complete metamorphosis of both mind and body, her now dangerous endeavor will take Yeong-hye—impossibly, ecstatically, tragically—far from her once-known self altogether.

A disturbing, yet beautifully composed narrative told in three parts, The Vegetarian is an allegorical novel about modern day South Korea, but also a story of obsession, choice, and our faltering attempts to understand others, from one imprisoned body to another. — Goodreads

Rated – R (Sexual scenes, Disturbing imagery, TRIGGER WARNING – SELF HARM

Publication Date – 10 / 30 / 2007

Length – 192 pages


The Good –

  • This book was haunting. There was a creepy vibe from the very first page and it does not let up at all. Even though this book is not a thriller, it really reads like one.
  • This was a great take on mental illness and how mental illness affects loved ones as well. I feel like I haven’t read a book that focuses less on the character who is suffering and more on those who are in their lives.
  • The writing was so eloquent and beautiful and was by far the best part of the book. I’m not going to sit here and lie to you and say that I understood all the symbolism, but I was still able to enjoy and follow the story.

The Meh:

  • I was so intrigued by the premise of this book, but when reading it I felt it was underwhelming. It just never made me especially invested, and I wasn’t actually in a state of unease until the final section.
  • This book is written in 3 parts, and 3 different perspective. Out of these 3 parts, I definitely preferred the second the most, and found the third the most “unsettling”. I will talk about the first part later.  I put this under the “meh” section because out of the 3 parts I only cared about the voice of the narrator in the second part and was actually rooting for him (which I don’t think I should have been and I’m worried for myself).
  • I do feel like this book is very similar to other things I’ve read that are about women descending into madness. I had not heard the comparison to The Yellow Wallpaper before reading this, but as I read, I couldn’t get that story out of my mind.

The Bad:

  • The only big issue I had with this book was the first part, or the lack of the consistency across all the parts. In the first part, it is told in the first person but in the other parts it is told solely in third person. I wish that it had either been mixed throughout the entire book or all first person or all third. It was just very distracting for me.

 

  • STORY – 4/5 (it was a great ode to mental illness and many other important themes but I thought it was a little lackluster when it came to execution)
  • CHARACTERS – 4/5 (I found my only caring for one character who I don’t think I should have been rooting for. I especially didn’t care for the woman who chose to become vegetarian which was disappointing)
  • WRITING – 4.5 (by far the best part of this book. Very eloquent and symbolic.)
  • UNIQUENESS – 4/5 (I felt like I’ve read this story before which I know Is crazy but it reminded me of many other story of mental illness centered around women.)

ALL IN ALL I GIVE THIS 4.1 PAINTED BODIES OUT OF 5!

 

Have you read this? What did you think about it? I would love to know!

Thanks for reading!

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Check out my last post on my review of Your House Is On Fire, Your Children All Gone – Stefan Kiesbye HERE!