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review 2017-02-22 16:46
My Life With the Walter Boys Book Review
My Life With The Walter Boys - Ali Novak

I feel like I'm being nice giving this two stars. I really wanted to like this book but its just not well written. There are zero emotions throughout and after reading the about me page in the end its pretty obvious that this story started out on Wattpad, I don't mean that as a compliment.

 

Jackie Howard is from New York, not used to country living. But that all changes when her parents and sister die in a car accident and she's sent to live with her Aunt who has seven boys living with her. Jackie isn't comfortable with one boy, much less seven of them.

 

Man, this was so disappointing. I read the description and was super exciting about the plot line. First of all, your parents dying would be a severely traumatizing event in in your lifetime. This author has no idea how to write these emotions. I didn't feel anything from Jackie, she may have shed a few tears but she was just so dull.

 

And the boys? Not what I wanted at all. Super obnoxious and hated the love triangles between Jackie and them. Kinda gross in my opinion. I would have rather had some brotherly sisterly feelings since they were living together.

 

Totally disappointed in this one.

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review 2017-02-22 14:16
Alien Salvation (World of Kalquor #4) by Tracy St. John
Alien Salvation - Tracy St. John
Alien Salvation is the fourth book in the World of Kalquor series, and in my opinion, is the best book so far. The Kalquorians are searching Earth, or what's left of it, trying to contain the devastation left by the nuclear bombs, and also trying to find the Empress' family. The same family are hiding out in Florida, unknown to the looters who are nearby, or the Kalquorians. When a small scout ship lands, Lindsey decides that she will do whatever it takes to get food for her parents. When she realises that the 'trade' isn't as bad as she thought it would be, she is more than happy to carry. With adventures and mishaps along the way, Lindsey and her clan need to figure out what is the right thing to do, and what is the right thing for them.
 
This book is very well written, giving the reader no doubt about how much Lindsey loves her family. Tara is a wonderful character, so serene and yet full of wit and humour at times. Aaron is everything a father should be towards his daughter - loving and protective. The clan themselves seemed a bit disjointed when we first meet them, but with Lindsey there, they all grow and mould into one cohesive unit. This book will tug on the emotions, it has more sorrow in it than the previous books. This series is turning out to be a secret surprise, and definitely recommended by me.
 
* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *
 
Merissa
Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!
Source: sites.google.com/site/archaeolibrarian/merissa-reviews/aliensalvationworldofkalquor4bytracystjohn
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review 2017-02-22 04:37
Review: The You I've Never Known by Ellen Hopkins
The You I've Never Known - Ellen Hopkins

Quick review for a quick read. As per usual, Ellen Hopkins' works tend to feel like I've ran a sheer emotional gauntlet. The experience leaves me winded in the aftermath (in a good way). How does someone describe the whirlwind that is this novel? It's hard not to be drawn into it because you get so connected to the emotional journeys of the character within, how complex and complicated they are, and even hoping that - in the end - things turn out the best . I'll admit I saw the twists in the relationship between these protagonists coming, but even with that the "Aha!" moment felt satisfying to watch as the stories came together.

So: "The You I've Never Known" is largely a story about identity and the process of coming to terms with it. This happens multi-fold in the case of Ariel, a young woman who's spent most of her life on the run with her father. She's 17 years old and has never stayed in one place for too long, been in the go-betweens of her father and his numerous relationships that seem to come and go as the need arises. When I say need - well, it means a roof, food, booze, and sex in the case of the father. Ariel's father is a horrible douche, and this novel doesn't flinch at showing his flaws, but also the complicated relationship Ariel has with him. There are many times when she loves him and stays, but others where he abuses and uses her and she wants nothing more than to go.

But Ariel finally finds a place where she feels wanted, between relationships as she is a bisexual woman exploring relationships with a boy (Gabe) and a Latina girl (Monica). So things quickly become complicated as Ariel realizes she wants to finally give herself a grounded place (a steady job, to be able to have a car on her own, etc.)

The narrative trades spaces with Maya's narrative (distinguished between Ariel's narrative in prose form. Ariel's narration is in the form of poetry.) Maya is a woman who's escaped an abusive mother in Scientology and seeks a relationship with a man who's in the miliary, but certain events play out that complicate the relationship between Maya, her husband, and the baby named Casey whom Maya writes to in her entries.

I won't spoil too much more in terms of the story's events, but it definitely felt like it packed a lot of events and conflict into one story (9/11, homophobia, struggles with bisexuality/sexual identity, abusive relationships, gaslighting, etc.). That not to say that the experience doesn't read smoothly, I read this in a matter of about 3 hours or so and didn't put down the book once. Yet, there were parts of the story that I definitely feel like could've used more distinct ties and resolutions and somehow that left a bit of a void and an aching for certain character ties to be more intimate (though the character connections and establishments were solid for the most part).

I think this is as strong of an addition to Hopkins's bibliography as any of her works and I enjoyed the experience. I also recognize how brave it was for her to write this narrative given that portions of it were based on true events. Overall, I'd certainly re-read this narrative and thought it was well worth the time spent.

Overall score: 4/5 stars.

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review 2017-02-21 21:16
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - Benjamin Alire Sáenz

This book is EVERYTHING. I'd give it 6 stars if I could, because it has been a long, long time since a book has completely gutted me like this one did. I don't even know what else to say about it, to be honest. It's just so honest. So raw. Watching these two boys, at a time in their life when they are discovering who they are, from two very different families, it all just made for a book that I couldn't stop falling in love with. This book is perfection.

 

Was I eagerly awaiting that first real kiss? Yes, yes I was. Was I hoping beyond hope that they would each come to understand how much they truly loved one another? You bet your behind I was.

 

I'm in love. 

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review 2017-02-21 21:04
June Jenson and the Shield of Quell by Emily Harper-Mohammed
June Jenson and the Shield of Quell - Emily Harper

Well now, this was a lot of fun! I already knew that June and I would get along famously. After all, she's an accomplished Oxford professor, loves her grumpy old grandfather, and simply wants to make a name for herself in the world of archaeology. What's not to love? My only hope was that her journey would be just as exciting as she was shaping up to be. Happily, that was exactly the case!

Massive love goes to Emily Harper for crafting such enjoyable characters. Although I already knew I'd love June, it was really her grandfather that stole my heart. His giggle worthy attempts at complimenting June, his deep dislike of trousers (I feel you on that, Professor), and his need to keep his accomplishments in the forefront of his mind, were all things that endeared him to me. Pairing him with June, who just didn't know how to handle him at all times, was perfection. I loved watching them interact, and thought he added a perfect spice to the mystery!

Now, the mystery itself, shall we? I thought Harper did a brilliant job at laying out all the breadcrumbs as June fell further down the rabbit hole. From the moment she was inducted into the secret "Alliance" guarding the shield, I knew that things were going to get interesting. What I didn't expect was how much fun this whole mystery would be. As June and her rather unusual entourage searched for answers, I breathlessly followed after them. There was the perfect amount of humor, mixed in with all the action. As I said, a ton of fun.

Am I ready for the next book? Absolutely, I am! Which, thankfully, I also have in my possession. Expect to see a review of that book as well, very soon. While you wait, pick up June Jenson and the Shield of Quell! It's well worth your time!

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