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text 2017-06-16 13:30
Summer books you can't miss!

 

Summer is coming.

 

Now, after I've made that trying- to-be ASoIaF reference, it's time to talk about books! This time of the year is all about light. easy, enjoyable read no matter if you are somewhere on the beach with salt in your hair or lying in your aparment under the air conditioner.

I loved and utterly enjoyed every book listed below and highly recommend you read them!
 

1) Always and Forever, Lara Jean - Jenny Han

 

 

 

 Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.

Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.

But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.

When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?

 

 

2) Everything, Everything - Nicola Yoon

 

 

 

Alexis Wyndham is the other type of Queen B—the Queen Bitch. 

After years of being the subject of ridicule, she revels in her ability to make the in-crowd cower via the exposés on her blog, The Eastline Spy. Now that she's carved out her place in the high school hierarchy, she uses her position to help the unpopular kids walking the hallways. 

Saving a freshman from bullies? Check. 
Swapping insults with the head cheerleader? Check. 
Falling for the star quarterback? So not a part of her plan. 

But when Brett offers to help her solve the mystery of who’s posting X-rated videos from the girls’ locker room, she’ll have to swallow her pride and learn to see past the high school stereotypes she’s never questioned—until now.

 

 

3) 1000 Days of Spring - Tomislav Perko

 

 

 

 

A true story of a young successful stockbroker going broke, and lifting his thumb in search for his true self, by traveling the world.

After almost five years of traveling on five different continents, Tomislav laid down in a hammock in one village on the coast of Ecuador, and started writing a book. 

He was determined to put down everything he knows about traveling, and with that, answer the questions that many people ask him for years: 
- How is it possible to travel with almost no money? 
- Is his way of traveling safe enough? 
- What are the worst, and the best moments on the road? 
- How can you earn money while traveling? 
- Where to look for sponsors? 
- How did his parents and friends react? 
- Why is he traveling in the first place? 

Since it was impossible to give a simple and short answers to those questions, he started answering them in the only way possible - by telling his life story. 

Tomislav wrote about his student days, about the days when he had a well paid job as a stockbroker, about going bankrupt, about turning his life around, about first ventures on the road with a backpack on his back, and about finding a way that he will follow in the years to come - by traveling. 

Tomislav wrote about hitchhiking in numerous countries, sleeping in homes of strangers, camping on the side of the road, eating in supermarkets and drinking beer in parks, volunteering, many anecdotes that he encountered on the road, natural beauties that left him breathless, and about the beautiful people that he met on the way. 

Tomislav wrote about love.

 

 

4) The Storyteller - Andrea Tomić

 

 

 

 

Terrible things can happen when a storyteller falls in love.


There are thousands of stories of forbidden loves, many of them including a princess and a slave. When you live in a world of nine kingdoms and each has its own rulers and legends, the chances of not hearing a story like that are minimal.

Ever since her father, the king of the Third kingdom, passed away, princess Rachelle has been entertained by her servant Daniel. He would tell her his own stories or the ones she had already heard. None of this would be a problem if he hadn't fallen in love in with her over the years.
Now not only does he need to spend every day near his loved one knowing she could never love him back, but he has to hide every glimpse of his feelings. Because if he doesn't, he might get killed.
But when the princess starts feeling the same way, their fairy tale begins. 
However, unlike every other story he had ever told, this one might not have a happy ending. This time the Storyteller became a character and lost his possibility of creating happy endings. 

 

 

5) World Whisperer - Rachel Devenish Ford

 

 

 

Seven years ago, Isika’s mother walked out of the desert with three children in tow, leading the priest of the Worker village to marry her and take in her children. In all those years, fourteen-year-old Isika has never been able to fit in as a Worker or live up to her role as the priest's daughter, and worse, she has been helpless against the tragedies that have fallen on her family.

But now the four goddesses they serve want another sacrifice, and Isika's stepfather has chosen the next child to be sent out to sea: the little brother who Isika loves more than anything.

This time Isika will not be powerless.

Together, she and her two remaining siblings leave the walls of the Worker village to save their brother, traveling into unknown lands and magic they never could have imagined.

 

 

6) Confessions of a Queen B* - Crista McHugh

 

 

Alexis Wyndham is the other type of Queen B—the Queen Bitch. 

After years of being the subject of ridicule, she revels in her ability to make the in-crowd cower via the exposés on her blog, The Eastline Spy. Now that she's carved out her place in the high school hierarchy, she uses her position to help the unpopular kids walking the hallways. 

Saving a freshman from bullies? Check. 
Swapping insults with the head cheerleader? Check. 
Falling for the star quarterback? So not a part of her plan. 

But when Brett offers to help her solve the mystery of who’s posting X-rated videos from the girls’ locker room, she’ll have to swallow her pride and learn to see past the high school stereotypes she’s never questioned—until now.

 

 

7) Chasing a Croatian Grl: A Survivor's Tale - Cody McClain Brown

 

 

 

This is the lighthearted story of American Cody McClain Brown’s adjustments to life in Croatia. After falling in love with an enigmatic, beautiful Croatian girl (whom he knows is from Croatia but assumes that means Russia), Cody eventually woos her and the two move to Split, Croatia. There, he encounters a world of deadly drafts, endless coffees, and the forceful will of his matriarchal mother-in-law. Chasing a Croatian Girl moves past the beautiful pictures of Croatia and humorously discovers the beauty of Croatia’s people and culture.

 

8) Slip - David Estes

 

 

 

As sea levels rise and livable landmasses shrink, the Reorganized United States of America has instituted population control measures to ensure there are sufficient resources and food to sustain the growing population. Birth authorization must be paid for and obtained prior to having a child. Someone must die before another can be born, keeping the country in a population neutral position at what experts consider to be the optimal population. The new laws are enforced by a ruthless government organization known as Pop Con, responsible for terminating any children resulting from unauthorized births, and any illegals who manage to survive past their second birthday, at which point they are designated a national security threat and given the name Slip.

But what if one child slipped through the cracks? What if someone knew all the loopholes and how to exploit them? Would it change anything? Would the delicate resource balance be thrown into a tailspin, threatening the lives of everyone?

And how far would the government go to find and terminate the Slip?

In a gripping story of a family torn apart by a single choice, Slip is a reminder of the sanctity of a single life and the value of the lives we so often take for granted.

 

 

9) Luna Tree: The Baby Project - Maya Berger

 

 

 

Maya is kicking up her heels, living the fabulous and mostly carefree life of a twenty-something young woman. However, in the back of her mind continuous longing for a good marriage and family lingers. How do you find the right man, the one who sticks through thick and thin? Will he provide you with the things you find essential in a relationship? Maya kissed a few frogs before finding her Prince Charming, but what followed was of higher importance. She started feeling chronic pain in her lower back, the pain that wouldn't let her neither sit nor stand. Thus Maya began her relentless quest for diagnosis and healing, which she ends after discovering Energy healing. She travels the globe to receive and raise her own stored Energy, the one that changes everything. Her ultimate desires come true.

 

 

10) Anna and the French Kiss - Stephanie Perkins

 

 

 

Can Anna find love in the City of Light?

Anna is happy in Atlanta. She has a loyal best friend and a crush on her coworker at the movie theater, who is just starting to return her affection. So she's less than thrilled when her father decides to send her to a boarding school in Paris for her senior year.

But despite not speaking a word of French, Anna meets some cool new people, including the handsome Étienne St. Clair, who quickly becomes her best friend. Unfortunately, he's taken —and Anna might be, too. Will a year of romantic near misses end with the French kiss she's waiting for?

 

 11) Once and for All - Sarah Dessen

 

 

As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen's thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that's why she's cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm's length. But Ambrose isn't about to be discouraged, now that he's met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

 

12) Everwind - Barbara Mišković

 

 

Deep in the dark and dreary Scandinavian forest there lies an ancient fortress of Stormgard. It is an orphanage for talented children who posses the priceless gift of magic. Unfortunately, after the dreadful war that nearly devastated Stormgard it became difficult for the Archmage to find new teachers for his apprentices. A beautiful, fire-haired woman from Great Britain applies for the job of an enchantress but Torval is unsure if she's really cut out for the job. Little does he know that their new enchantress has a secret. A secret so great that it could change everything!

 

13) Republic of Stone - Tanja Radman

 

 

 

After decades of dictatorship of the tyrant Rector, a resistance awakens alongside the truth withheld from the young heroes, who suddenly face tasks beyond their understanding. Learning about their magical origin, as well as the powers they gained in a rather bloody way, five young sorcerers are preparing for another war - one which might change everything, or even worse, nothing at all.

'Republic of Stone' is a historical fantasy novel situated in the medieval times of the Republic of Ragusa (today Dubrovnik, Croatia). It is the first of the Lex Legis series, which was translated into English after the Croatian paperback version sold out in two editions. Combining real historical places, events and characters with elements of Slavic mythology and pure epic fantasy, this book will take you on a journey you will never forget. If you decide to be adventurous and visit Dubrovnik, one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, you will be able to carry this book around real locations you can still visit today and relive the amazing magic battles from the story, bow before the evil Rector’s statue and defiantly whisper the forbidden sentence only the members of the Lunarian secret society know, learn about the hidden magical life of one of the most famous Croatian medieval scientists – Marin Ghetaldus, and walk the streets where the young heroes of this book learned about their destiny…

 

 

14) Bridesmaids - Jane Costello

 

 

 

Four weddings, three disgruntled ex-boyfriends in the congregation, two wayward 'chicken-fillet' boob enhancers, and one gorgeous man, it's tough being a bridesmaid.
 
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review 2017-03-02 19:27
Terrible things happen when a storyteller falls in love
The Storyteller - Andrea Tomić

read in January 2017

 

 

I recieved a digital ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Big thanks to author Andrea Tomić!


"This story is for all of you who sometimes feel like lost souls, sitting in sofa next to the window, covered in the warm blanket while you are reading familiar, and yet unknown words.(...) And you will learn soon enough that terrible things can happen when a storyteller falls in love."

This is a story many of you had already heard before. Two people who can't be together fall in love. As the author heself said, this story is a cliche. Oh boy, but what a beautiful one. What makes this one stand out is not only a little bit different take on a usual story, as Daniel and Rachelle are both very aware of their situation. What Tomić does here is take the essence of your average cliche romance and mocks it while putting our main characters in the same situation.
This is beautiful story about two people who really loved eachother. It is filled with a rollercoaster of emotions, characters you will love and hate and, most important of all, good story. Or stories, as we get to read those Daniel tells Rachelle.

This book is not for those who look for something new and revolutionary, because it isn't and it isn't even trying to be. This is for "dreamers, lovers and lunatics." This is for all of you who are looking for an enjoyable, emotional read and for those who are still looking for love that can be found in fairy tales.

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review 2016-10-22 22:35
Beyond The Bars Of A Caged Bird
Jane Eyre - Uma Autobiografia - Mécia Gaspar Simões,João Gaspar Simões,Charlotte Brontë

“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.

 

Let me start this by saying that Jane Eyre is a very difficult book to review. First of all,there isn't anything I can say that hasn't been said thousand of times before in more eloquent ways. Second,I always find difficult to describe things that I love this much. 

 

It suffices to say that this one really touched my heart. Beyond being a tale of romance,this book is about a woman. A woman with no particular characteristics to make her stand out in the middle of a crowd,mostly because many of the characters simply looked at the surface of what "Jane" was. But there was so much depth to her thoughts and personality. 

 

 

This isn’t a book that is carried by the charisma of it’s characters,though. The plot itself is also flawless. Jane’s story is absolutely compelling and there wasn't a single moment when I wasn’t rooting for her. She also showed tact and intelligence,making me trust her judgment. It was such a refreshment to see a main character that actually spent some times logically considering her decisions and relationships with the other characters.

 

And this brings me to the other men and women of the plot,all of them complex in their own ways. Mr. Rochester was one of my favorites,of course. He is deep man,one that embraced life with pure passion. His relationship with Jane was everything I was hoping it would be. I felt empty when the book ended and I realized I wouldn’t be seeing more of the characters I loved. This is truly what I felt a romance should be like,and I wasn’t disappointed in the least.

 

 

St.John is also another character that I loved,flawed as he was. But so was everyone else,which I considered realistic. He stuck with his beliefs beyond everything,and that’s more than what can be said about most.

 

In sum,and to semi-quote another favorite of mine,"Jane bewitched me,body and soul." I was in love with everything about her,and if I have any complaint is that I wish her story was much longer so we could stay together for more time.

 

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review 2016-10-02 21:52
GodBomb! Review (My Last Review or Post on Booklikes: Hope to see you elsewhere!)
GodBomb! - Kit Power

I was planning on writing a separate post saying goodbye to all you wonderful Booklikes users who I've gotten to know over the past three years, but I can't seem to get the site to load on the worst of days, and on the best of days, it takes forever to post over here because of how slow the site has become.

 

So this is my final post. Much love and thanks for all the support. Please believe that it's not you, it's this broken-ass site. I don't have the patience for it. I hope to see you guys elsewhere on the interwebs. 

 

Oh, I probably wouldn't comment on this post if you want me to see it. This is the first time since my last review that this site has loaded for me. If you want to say goodbye (I wish you wouldn't because I'm loads of other places, like Wordpress and Facebook and Instagram and Twitter and Goodreads, to name a few), email me at edwardlorn@gmail.com. I'm not deleting my account because there are hundreds of reviews and posts here that I've linked to in other posts and guest blogs and such, so my account will still be here, but I won't. 

 

*hugs and fist bumps and high fives all around*

 

Now for my review...

 

Exceptional. Far beyond all expectations I might have had regarding quality. I know most of my friends have given this novel high praise (that's how I came to read it), so I was expecting it to be good, but the writing herein is well above your average small-press or indie author. I'd even risk saying that Kit Power is one of the best writers working today, at any level of publishing. I'd have to read more of him, of course, but right now, I'm very impressed.

What Kit Power was able to accomplish with character development in such a short period of time matches the skills of Stephen King and Herman Koch. Power is not afraid to look deep into the hearts and minds of those he writers about. While the book reminded me a small bit of one of King's early novels, his Bachman book Rage, GodBombstands on its own legs. I would even say that Power's novel is better than Rage and Rage is one of my favorite Stephen King books.

The ending was the highlight of the book for me. Those who know me will understand why. I don't want to give even the subtlest of hints, because, while it's not necessarily a twist ending, it did shock me. I thought for sure we were headed one way, and Power took me a completely different direction. I can't say whether or not you'll be shocked, but that was my experience.

Being a opioid junkie of ole, I especially liked Mike's history. I did heroin in the late 90s and early 2000s, before I met my wife and managed to kick the illegal stuff, and currently am what they call a "functioning addict" because of my need for high-dose narcotic pain medicine due to a chronic back condition. I'm not sure if Kit Powers ever chased the dragon, but he sure nailed the character of Mike. Bravo.

I don't know nor will I theorize about Power's religious beliefs, or if he has any at all, but I believed that his characters were devout. If he's not a practicing Christian, I commend him for making these characters believable. It's hard to be respectful of characters with this level of faith if you're not a believer yourself. I know how hard that is. I ran into problems while writing one of my books, trying to make a Christian woman believable while keeping her from feeling overly silly. It's a testament to the power of this book that I found it so engaging when in reality I hate religion of any form. I don't mind religious people as long as they don't try to convert me every time we see each other, but I do hate the gimme-gimme structure of Christianity.

"Lord, please let my sports team win the big game."

"Lord, please let me win the lottery."

"Lord, gimme, gimme, gimme, Amen!"

Oh, and I can't forget the pastors and preachers of the world. But their gimme-gimme is called tithing. Then they can be like Joel Osteen in his million dollar mansion and say "These are just blessings! God is GOOD!" When translated, that statement reads "My congregation is GULLIBLE! Praise the Almighty Dollar!"

I've lost some of you, and that's okay. That means you won't be around for me to offend later. If you're still here, high five. Good job thinking for yourselves. *smooches*

In summation: Kit Power is a talented dude. While he reminds of the best, he's definitely got his own style. A style I image will be a pleasure to read for years to come.

Final Judgment: What a blast!

 

 

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review 2016-09-26 22:06
The Girl Next Door Review
The Girl Next Door - Jack Ketchum

There's going to be some personal information in this review. If you feel uncomfortable reading about child abuse of a sexual nature, you might want to skip this one.

The Girl Next Door was one of the first Leisure paperbacks I recall buying. I don't know what I was expecting, but what I got was a kick in the teeth. This book is brutal and unapologetic. And, in my opinion, Ruth is one of the scariest characters to be found within the pages of the book. What makes this all the more terrifying and unsettling is that the story is based on true events.

This time around, I decided to listen to Jack Ketchum read the book to me via audiobook. The one criticism I have is that Ketchum, like Ruth, is a heavy smoker. You can hear evidence of this in the way he breathes. I constantly felt myself drawn out of the story and and wondering about Ketchum's health. His voice isn't unpleasant, but his breathing is. You likely won't notice, but I did. He reminded me of my father, who was on oxygen during the final years of his life.

Here's where the personal info comes into play. You can skip to "In summation" if you like.

Growing up, I lived down the street from a pedophile named Eddie. The guy was arrested after a neighbor walked in on him molesting his mentally-impaired son, Jamie. Jamie's brother Ryan soon confessed that, yes, Eddie had been messing with both of them. After that, all the kids in the neighborhood came crawling out of the woodwork with stories of how Eddie had been at them.

I recall very clearly playing hide and seek with Ryan and group of our friends. Ryan and I hid in a closet. While we were in there, Ryan unzipped his pants and pulled out his penis. He said, "Put it in your mouth." I was ten and he was a year older than me, but even then I knew there was something wrong with what he was asking me. I mean, you pee out of that thing. Why would I want to put my mouth on it? I called him nasty and he laughed. He put his dick away and said he'd only been kidding. We played the rest of the day and never mentioned it again.

That was my only odd experience with that family, meaning Eddie never got a hold of me. Although there were stories about how my sisters offered themselves up willingly so he would leave me alone. To this day I'm not sure if that's true. It's not something I feel comfortable asking them, because we're not that close.

Soon after he was caught, one of the girls on the block came up pregnant. Rumors flooded the street about how the father was Eddie. The girl's mother had had a thing for him and used her daughter as a bargaining chip to win Eddie's attention.


Years later, I remember thinking, what kind of woman would do such a thing? Reading The Girl Next Door hit me that much harder because of all that.

Monsters come in all shapes and sizes. They come in all genders. Unfortunately, people like Ruth exist. Trust me. I know.

When Eddie got out of jail a few weeks later, he would park on the cross street and walk up and down our block. He'd point at houses and nod his head. He'd wave at anyone he'd happen to catch in their yards or looking out their windows. This was years before sexual predators had to register on a national list, and it was months before a restraining order was put into effect.

Some of you might recognize parts of this story because I put a different version of these events in one of my books. Looking back, I know how lucky I was.

In summation: Rereading this wasn't a bright idea, but I don't regret it. I'll never say that I enjoy reading it, but I feel everyone should experience it at least once.

Final Judgment: Utterly horrific.

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