[Book Talk] The Upside of Unrequited

Book Details:

Format: Ebook
Source: Library
Read: April 2017

Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

Right?

My Thoughts

Alright, before I start this review, I just have to comment on some of the reviews I had read about this book, saying that Molly shouldn’t find her happiness in a boy and she should find her self-confidence elsewhere, BUT it says right there in the synopsis what the book is about. To just shout out the predictability of YA novels, was it really going to end with Molly and Reid NOT getting together?

First off, I loved this book. I could connect with Molly so well because I was her growing up. I had those friends who were gorgeous and could get a boyfriend just like that. I felt so lonely and always wondered why no one would ask me out. What was wrong with me? So I knew what Molly was going through. It’s tough being 17 and seeing all your friends getting boyfriends and girlfriends – and, in Molly’s case, seeing her moms get married. I mean, it’s a lot to take in!

Second, there’s so much diversity in this book, which was wonderful. Not once did I feel like Becky Albertalli was just checking items off a list of what race to include or whether this character should be a lesbian or bisexual. It all just flowed so nice and everything felt right. It wasn’t one of those happy happy books where everyone gets along, though. Molly’s grandma is rude towards Molly’s weight, and Molly’s aunt hasn’t talked to her mom for a long time, most likely due to her relationship status.

There’s so much going on in Molly’s life that I can totally see why she’d look for some happiness – even if it was with a boy. It’s not like she doesn’t know who she is. She loves to create things and is using her talents to do the decorations for her moms’ upcoming wedding. She gets a job and gets to use her skills there. She’s had so many crushes but not one boyfriend and when she meets Reid, something happens and sparks fly — but after so much unrequited love, will something happen?

I loved Reid. I loved that he was a bit of a nerd and he was funny and just got Molly. I liked that he wasn’t just the handsome jock but someone who Molly could actually connect with and have fun with. I liked Cassie and her relationship with Molly. Yeah, this book deals with Molly and her looking for love, but it also deals with two sisters and what happens when they do reach that age where they start to have boyfriends and girlfriends. Once sacred relationships are tested and they somehow have to find a way back to each other.

This was such a great story to read and I loved how much I connected with it and am really looking forward to Becky Albertalli’s next book. She has such an engaging way of writing that pulls a reader in! Plus, this book was a super fast read, which was nice. It’s the perfect summer read, or the perfect book to unwind with at the end of a long day.

But don’t take my word for it … read some other reviews!

How Useful It Is
Lost In A Story
Going Through Books

[Book Talk] The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas

Book Details:

Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Read: May 2017

Synopsis:

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

But what Starr does or does not say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.

My Thoughts

It’s been almost a week since I’ve read this book and I’m still not sure what to say about it! This is a book that everyone has been talking about and for good reason. It’s a book that made me uncomfortable to read, and yet it had so much heart and left me with so much to think about.

First off, I loved Starr and her family. I remember when I read YA books years ago and the parents would barely be involved with anything, and you’d wonder if the kids in the book even had parents, but now they’re not only there, but they’re an integral part to the story. As a parent who’s reading YA, I like this. While there are parts of the story that resonates more with the actual young adults reading, the parts where parents impart wisdom upon their kids and that love comes across, that’s what usually has me beat as a parent.

This is one book that had me realize how lucky I am, and how much I should be paying attention to what’s happening with other people. If I had fears about my kids growing up in this world, I really had no idea what it’s like for other people because the things that happened in this book are things I’ve never experienced. I had my heart in my throat while reading and, like I said, I was uncomfortable at times. This is a book that should be uncomfortable and it’s a book that’s desperately needed at a time like this.

I loved this book. It was so well written, as well as heart wrenching and honest. It was terrifying and, yet, lovely. It was a hard read, but definitely necessary.

But don’t take my word for it … read some other reviews! 

Paperback Paris
The Bibliomaniac
Read Rest Relax

[Audiobook Talk] Like a River Glorious (The Gold Seer Trilogy, #2) by Rae Carson

Audiobook Details

Format: Audiobook & Hardcover
Source: Library & Purchased
Narrator: Erin Mallon
Length: 10 hours 27 minutes
Read: March 2017

The Gold Seer series

  1. Walk on Earth a Stranger
  2. Like a River Glorious
  3. Into the Bright Unknown (October 2017)

Synopsis:

After a harrowing journey across the country, Leah Westfall and her friends have finally arrived in California and are ready to make their fortunes in the Gold Rush. Lee has a special advantage over the other new arrivals in California—she has the ability to sense gold, a secret known only by her handsome best friend Jefferson and her murdering uncle Hiram.

Lee and her friends have the chance to be the most prosperous settlers in California, but Hiram hasn’t given up trying to control Lee and her power. Sabotage and kidnapping are the least of what he’ll do to make sure Lee is his own. His mine is the deepest and darkest in the territory, and there Lee learns the full extent of her magical gift, the worst of her uncle, and the true strength of her friendships. To save everyone, she vows to destroy her uncle and the empire he is building—even at the cost of her own freedom.

The second epic historical fantasy in the Gold Seer trilogy by Rae Carson, the acclaimed author of The Girl of Fire and Thorns.

My Thoughts

I am loving this series! There are so many YA books out there that are dystopian or about witches or vampires or other supernatural creatures, but there aren’t many that are historical – or at least, not many that I’ve found. I love that this one takes place during the gold rush and has just the teensiest bit of magic to it.

I own both of the books in this series, but I’ve been listening to the audiobooks, which are pretty awesome. It’s weird because once I start listening, I can’t stop thinking of the show Westworld, since the main character just has that sound about her, like the main character in the show. I can just picture the scenery in Westworld in my head as I listened to this book and maybe the man in black as evil Hiram?

The last book should be interesting and I’m glad I’m keeping up with the series. Rae Carson writes a great story. You’d think that historicals could get a little boring, but she makes it so fun and interesting, with great characters, adventure, romance. This series is definitely a must read!

Audiobook Notes: 

I’m fairly certain I listened to the first book on audio, too, and frankly I’m loving the narration! I think Erin Mellon does a great job of giving voices to these characters and they really sound “of the time period,” if that makes sense. She didn’t just read the story, either, but conveyed great emotion where it was needed. Her pacing was spot on and I just really enjoyed the reading and will check out other titles narrated by Erin in the future!

But don’t take my word for it … read some other reviews!

Novel Heartbeat
Pure Imagination
One Way Or An Author
Writing My Own Fairytale