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review 2018-08-06 22:51
Not the Girls You're Looking For
Not the Girls You're Looking For - Aminah Mae Safi

I was really hoping that I would like this book, unfortunately, it seems that I did not. I was really excited to read it because it focuses on a Muslim girl and her life, which you don't see a lot of in YA fiction. But it just let me down in pretty much every area.

I'm not going to lie to you, I knew pretty much right off the bat that I probably wasn't going to like this book. It starts off with no beginning, in fact, when you first start reading the book, it reads as if you picked up in the middle of a book as if it was the continuation of a sequel. There's no easing you into the stories or the characters, it just starts in the middle of something and keeps on going. Like I finished the book and honestly, I still don't know what the hell even happened or anything about these characters.

There's no plot in this book, at least none that I could see. I know it's a coming-of-age story but there should've been at least something to push the story along. The closest thing that came to a plot was I guess the string of parties everyone kept going to. I know that for some stories it's not the plot that carries it forward but the characters but to be perfectly honest, this didn't have great characters or even interesting ones to keep it moving or to keep you reading.

Moving onto the characters which was my biggest problem and why it took me so long to get through a book that would've normally taken me half a day. I didn't like any of them, they were all assholes and uninteresting, and I pretty much knew nothing about them and I still don't. In fact, I even question why Lulu and her friends are even friends. From what I could tell, they had nothing in common, they were constantly judging each other and trying to put each other down. They never listened to reason.

And most of the problems seemed to come down to simple miscommunication and I hate to tell you this but if your entire story is hanging on some simple miscommunication that can be easily fixed ... then your story probably isn't that good. There, I said it.

Lulu is so like, up her own ass that I just don't get her. Every interaction she had with her love interest at the start of the story was so baffling because he was being portrayed as being the bad guy or being offensive and half the things he did weren't even that bad. Like I get why the "you're not like other girls" thing is bad and a terrible pick-up line but a simple "no thanks" would've sufficed and she could've just gone on her way. But instead, Lulu literally drags that small line on for 2 pages and for what? It was so unnecessary, it was such an overreaction to something that wasn't that big of a deal.

Or she goes to a Battle of the Bands type of bullshit and he asks her "oh are you a fan of the band?" and she literally????? gets so mad????? and for what??????? She takes it as him trying to mock her or provoke her into proving that she's a "real fan" which is literally not what he's doing, he's just asking if she likes the band. Like Lulu is constantly accusing this guy of being an asshole but as far as I could see, she was the asshole in literally 99% of her interactions with everyone. And she kept describing him as looking confused when he was talking to her, and for good reason, because she was taking the conversation in a completely different area than where it was headed and the poor guy was just tryna follow along.

The only thing James, her love interest, did that was actually kind of yikes was take her to see belly-dancing because she was Arab.

Lulu is literally just so antagonistic for no reason over E V E R Y T H I N G. It's really hard to sympathize with a character who is constantly victimizing herself and making everyone else out to be like some kind of idiot who isn't as woke as her. And the funny thing is, she just makes an ass of herself every time because she thinks she's so much better than everyone else, the Ramadan incident being exhibit A.

Sis barely knows any Arabic, hears the word whore in a sentence half of which she can't even translate, and assumes it's about her mother like shut up. Your relatives, assholes they may be, can not only swear at you in Arabic and English but probably like 2 other languages as well, meanwhile you refuse to even tell people how you feel in English, sit down.

Her friends were just so????? I don't even know how to put it but like I said, I don't get why they're friends. I would say they're realistic but other than their interactions with each other, I literally don't know anything about them or their families or their interests, nothing. They're all also assholes in their own right.

Let's start with Audrey who's literally the worst person in this book. 

This girl always has something to say about not only Lulu's sexual activity but literally everyone else like you're an alcoholic at the age of, what, 16? I really don't think you're in any position to be judging someone, get off your high horse. And at the end she comes crying to Lulu like no fuck you, you're a terrible person goodbye.

The only thing that was irritating about Lo was the fact that she was trying to fuck the racism out of Scumbag Luke or something like for someone who has her head set straight like she does, I literally didn't get this one lapse in judgement from her. It just made no sense from what I understood about her character. And then at the end of the book, she's crying because Scumbag Luke turned out to be a scumbag like literally everyone said he was. She even knew that he was a racist, homophobic asshole, it wasn't a mystery, it was a well-known fact throughout the book. So did I feel sorry for her? No.

Next.

Emma, didn't do anything, she honestly might as well have not even been in the book because she literally contributed almost nothing, she only served as some sort of plot point because she's gay, but other than that, she didn't need to be there.

To conclude, is this book worth reading? Not really. I'm just glad I borrowed it from the library instead of buying it.

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review 2018-07-15 02:50
The Diviners
The Diviners - Libba Bray

I think it's time for a real review because that old one was just embarrassing (especially given that I just re-read this book).

I finally got around to reading this again like I've been meaning to do for some time now but lots of things happened and here we are several years later. I have the other books in a series which I'm also just getting around to now but anyways, moving on.

I don't know how young I was when I read this but like I get why I got scared reading it at night ya know. Maybe it's just because I've grown and not as easily scared anymore but thankfully it didn't scare me this time around.

I know that a lot of people had problems with Evie and they didn't like her. I was not one of those people. I mean yes, I get why people disliked her but it didn't bother me. I thought it gave her personality, made her seem real. I think I even have a few friends who are like her, maybe that was why she didn't bother me as much. There was a lot of 20s slang present in the book as well but it didn't make it any harder to understand or take away from the story, it's pretty easy to figure out what they're talking about.

I loved the diverse cast of characters that were present and the backstory on each of them. I think it really made them seem more realistic and also made you feel for them in a way. For example, what Blind Bill did to Isaiah, it was a terrible thing that he did but at the same time, when you learn more about him, you kind of understand where he was coming from and why he did it, it doesn't make it excusable, but you understand.

I love how everyone is connected to each other and watching those connections unfold. It honestly made me excited because I knew how the characters were connected but they didn't and it just kept you flipping the pages.

There's a hint of a love triangle present in the story, but it doesn't take away from the story or overshadow the plot ya know, it's mostly in the background. I hate love triangles just as much as the next person but it didn't bother me. And honestly, I could see Evie ending up with either Sam or Jericho like I support both of them. I'm leaning towards Jericho just a L I T T L E bit more, but I can see her ending up with either and I'd fully support the end product either way.

The romance was not the point, however.

I think the supernatural stuff was written really well, the murders were gruesome and maybe it makes me a sociopath but I honestly loved reading those bits. It was so great watching the mystery unfold as Evie and the rest of them put everything together.

And I think my favourite part of the book was the way that it showed how people can get carried away and fanatic with what they believe and how this blurs the line between good and bad. How anything is excusable if you believe that you're doing it in the name of God. I don't know, but I thought it was probably the most interesting aspect of the book, seeing the level of devotion that people had to the Brethren and how far they were willing to go in order to see through what they believed to be the word of God.

TL;DR please read this it's an amazing book and well worth your money.

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review 2018-06-25 03:51
Obsidio
Obsidio - Jay Kristoff,Amie Kaufman

I don't even know where to start. I literally just finished this book five minutes ago. I'm in shock.

 

To be honest this entire series is just one long screaming fest because hOlY ShIt.

 

 

There's so many plot twists and the authors constantly push you to the brink of despair and make you think that everyone's going to die.

 

AND THEN THEY SNATCH YOU BACK FROM THE EDGE AND THEY'RE LIKE SIKE.

 

I think I've said this before, but I know some people had trouble with the way that the story was told as it was told through dossiers and stuff and I'll admit that it's out of the ordinary but I think it really fits the story.

 

I think this entire trilogy does a really good job of showing that there isn't always just black and white, good and evil, there's so many gray areas and showing how people fit into those grey areas. There are so many characters in this book, not all of them important, but you get a little snippet into almost all of their lives that gives you some understanding of them. It does a really good job of showing that good people are capable of doing bad things. And that it's a lot harder to simply cut someone off when you know that person.

 

There were so many characters in the book who had committed some really terrible atrocities and while it made me absolutely livid, seeing them through the eyes of some of the characters and hearing them talk, you begin to hate them a little less.

 

Except for Leanne Frobisher, that bitch can rot to be honest.

 

I really liked the dialogue among the characters, they all had their own distinctive way of talking. I think even without the name labels, you'd probably be able to figure who was speaking when. I also really liked the characterization. Obviously not everyone is likeable, but they feel real, like someone that you might encounter at some point throughout your life ya know.

 

It goes without saying that the plot was absolutely incredible and blew my damn mind.

 

I know that this probably is coming across as very scatter-brained and unorganized but I'm still reeling from the book and trying to get my brain working properly again. 10/10 would recommend and I'm 100% planning on reading this series again in the future.

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review 2018-02-19 02:57
Gemina (The Illuminae Files) - Jay Kristoff,Amie Kaufman
So ... this series has me screaming, but internally because my family is around.

I was honestly surprised by how much I'm enjoying this series. I haven't read anything like this before but maybe this is because I just haven't ventured into this genre before or something. Either way, this is new for me.

One of my favourite things about this is the way that it's told. It's set up as a dossier with files and collections of messages sent between people and reports and video footage. The authors even went so far as to provide actual faces for almost all of the characters which is just great. There's all this pretty artwork on top of it too to keep things interesting.

And I admire how diverse the characters are, you have characters from every race and ethnicity out there and they're not background characters either, they're important. 

I need to talk about AIDAN for a second, the artificial intelligence system, because I've never been so infuriated in such a long time over an artificial intelligence system. It barely even has a personality and yet ... you wanna punch a computer in the screen just from reading this book. AIDAN is fucking crazy, like watching it develop a consciousness in the first book was honestly terrifying. This shit followed me into my dreams like I'm not joking, I was S C A R E D. But then you grow to enjoy AIDAN and it takes a lot to turn you around from hating an AI system to being like oh okay I guess you're not that bad.

I know that a few people have a problem with the romance line in the series but I honestly don't see why as it doesn't take away from the story. Like it's pretty background music type of stuff you know, it doesn't take away focus from the main story and what's really happening or what the reader is meant to be focusing on. If anything, I think it adds to the story, I feel as if I understand the characters a little better because of the underlying romance. You understand their motives more and why they do what they have to do.

I also really appreciate that the text messages they send each other are readable. Pretty much all of the time that adults attempt to write teenage talk through text it's literally unreadable. As a teenager, I can't read shit whenever I see an author's attempt to write teenage text. It takes me a good 5-10 minutes to figure out what the fuck the author is talking about BECAUSE YOU CAN'T READ THE TEXT. 

"But they're adults, they haven't been teenagers in a while." I hear you, but also just talk to a 17-year-old, text them, see how they respond. Mimic it. It's not that hard.

So yeah, I appreciate that the text talk was readable and accurate.

Also hey, let's appreciate Ella, who's disabled but still has spunk to her and is still hella smart and a force to be reckoned with. 

And the plot was really good, it kept moving at a good pace and new things kept popping up to keep you moving so things never got dull. I was honestly tense and anxious while reading this just waiting to hear what else was going to pop up. And I didn't see any of the plot twists that came up in the book, like the signs were there I just didn't think anything of it until the end and then it hit me like a brick.

So yeah, I recommend the series, I thought everything about it was great and I'm pumped for the last book to come out to see how this ends.

 

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review 2017-12-24 23:38
Revenge, Ice-cream, and Other Things Best Served Cold
Revenge, Ice Cream, and Other Things Best Served Cold (A Broken Hearts & Revenge Novel) - Katie Finn

Okay, we need to talk about this book.

Because what in the fuck.

To clarify I haven't read the first book but I think the events that happened in the first book were referred to relatively frequently to the point that I basically got the gist of what happened in the end without the nasty details of everything that this bitch Hallie did.

I didn't think I'd end up liking this as much as I would like I was at a solid three stars mostly because the beginning, while not boring, did take some time to build up and get to the good stuff but when it did get to the good stuff HOLY SHIT. This was teenage girl drama but to the extreme, should anything along this line ever happen in real life I would be sincerely concerned for the mental stability of the individuals involved.

I'm going to start off with Gemma because I don't have much to say about her and while I didn't hate her, I did get just a tad bit irritated with her.

Because this girl is fucking stupid. As shit. So stupid. I literally cannot even comprehend the level of cluelessness she expresses throughout this book.

For the first half of this book I couldn't go more than a few pages without Gemma saying, "I didn't understand half of what she said," over the most basic, easy to understand concepts. Like you didn't even have to be especially gifted to understand all of the things that she didn't understand, you just have to have graduated from the 12th grade. And I was like there is just no way, there has to be some sort of exaggeration on her part, there is no way that this girl knows this little.

But as you keep reading you realize, oh but she is this clueless.

And this is what made the plot twists less shocking than they actually were, like half of the things that she realizes near the end of the book, you have figured out before you hit the halfway mark. And she out here acting all shocked

And I'm just here like .... girl are you actually stupid. And maybe you're thinking oh but you're just good at figuring things out, I'm here to tell you no. nonononononono. I'm terrible at figuring things out which is why mysteries are always such a wild ride for me because I literally never put two and two together.

But when your hints are blunt enough that even I figured it out then you either did a really bad job of hiding the hints or your main character is stupid.

Gemma is just stupid.

But total obliviousness aside, I didn't hate her. I actually really liked her, she had really changed by the end of the novel and I appreciate that character growth that she went through and realized that hey maybe it's a good idea to stop acting like I'm 12. Although to be fair it was because Hallie was fucking crazy and it was kill or be killed so she really didn't have much of a choice.

But one more thing that I want to touch upon before we get into the mess that is Hallie.

The biggest thing that I liked about Gemma's growth was her realization that TEDDY AIN'T SHIT BITCH. Like the little details her friends brought up about the way she used to be with Teddy and the increasing level of "ew what the fuck why was I like that" that she experienced throughout the book as she realized how incapable of thinking for herself and being on her own she was when she had been with Teddy. So yeah, I think Gemma came out a better person at the end of this book and I'm really excited to see what happens in the third one.

But moving on to Hallie. This bitch is crazy, this is like the third time that I've said this but for real this bitch is fucking crazy. Like I seriously think she needs to go in for psychiatric evaluation because she is just ... really unstable. And creepy.

This girl is literally so hung up over some ruined birthday party from when she was eleven that this bitch spent like 4 fucking years building up to the destruction of Gemma.

Over a birthday party.

Just let that sink in. 

Gemma like changed the date of the party so that no one showed up on the day that it actually was and this bitch Hallie held a vendetta for like 4 fucking years and spent all that time plotting to get back at Hallie over a birthday party.

As somebody who has had this happen to them in like elementary (not the having the date changed thing, people just didn't work out because I didn't realize how invitations worked in Canada but anyway moving on that's a different story), it's literally not that big of a deal like let it go and move on. What kind of eleven year old has the time and energy to spend doing this shit like last I remember when I was eleven everyone was like losing their shit over tamagatchi's or those little pooh bears in the different outfits.

And it's not like Gemma wasn't sorry like she tried to make things right and from what I understand, not in the best way possible but she did try and this girl Hallie was just determined to spit in her face over it damn.

And Gemma is like maybe I should get a restraining order LIKE NO DUH SHE PUT FUCKING SPYWARE ON YOUR BEST FRIEND'S PHONE A RESTRAINING ORDER IS LONG OVER DO THIS IS LIKE A FUCKING CRIME.

She almost gets Gemma arrested, she gets Gemma fired, she ruins all of Gemma's relationships and for what? A birthday party.

I'm just ... I have no words, there are no words to describe my level of shock as this dumbassery.

But I will say this, it was pretty creative like you never really think about how important a birthday can be until you read this book.

And to end off, if Ford and Gemma do not get together in the third book I'm going to riot, I'm going to set fire to ... idk maybe a napkin I don't wanna burn my books or anything. But they better get together, my boy Ford is so kind and lovely and insanely smart and so sweet I want him to be happy and I want someone to adore him as much as he adores Gemma. He is too good for this world and a true hoe, not even asking any questions before he goes hacking to find evidence for Gemma.

I think I'll end there, my adrenaline has finally stopped pumping.

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