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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Book Review | Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Happy Halloween! Here is my review of my Halloween spooky read, and also what I'm reading today (on Halloween)!

What are you guys reading this Halloween? What are the creepiest books that you have read?

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Book Review | Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Title: Eleanor & Park
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publication: February 26th, 2013
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Source: Bought it

Rating: 5 out 5 stars

Synopsis: Set over the course of one school year in 1986, ELEANOR AND PARK is the story of two star-crossed misfits - smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try. When Eleanor meets Park, you'll remember your own first love - and just how hard it pulled you under.

Review: I've heard quite a bit of hype about this book and that usually steers me away from the book until it cools down. This book I picked up during banned books week because of some impact it has had in my home state. A library in the state (not my local library) cancelled Rainbow Rowell's appearance because some believed that this book was inappropriate for kids to be reading because of the language in it. Since it was banned books week, I decided that this would be the perfect read for it.

I loved this book and the story in its pages. The realistic aspect of this book will have anyone relating to it in one way or another. There are always difficult aspects of a relationship and Eleanor and Park's relationship is no exception. Eleanor and Park are two lost, and broken people that seem to find more of themselves when they are together. There is a tie to my homestate of Minnesota in the book and I loved that!

Eleanor was a real girl that carried many burdens with her. She had to deal with a broken home along with a new school where she didn't know anyone. She's described as being larger than those around her, but what female doesn't feel that way and in that sense I related to her and loved her even more for her realness. I completely related to Eleanor in her imperfect attributes and I loved that about her. She quickly became one of my favorite characters.

Park was an average boy, that didn't stand out, but just lived his teenage life doing what he needed to do. He was a little rough around the edges but Eleanor softened him up by just being herself. Park is a guy that not all girls want but is a diamond in the rough and was perfect for Eleanor. I enjoyed reading about how he turned around to become quite the sweet gentleman for Eleanor and giving her the love that she deserved.

Addressing to why this book was banned: Yes there was some "foul" language in this book, but it is language that you could just as easily hear on the street or other media. I think this book carries so much that everyone can relate to. I don't think this book should be banned (I don't think any book should be banned), but rather I think that this story should be embraced and shared for I think many would enjoy reading this one.

Eleanor & Park is filled with realities of everyday life, hardships, happiness and love. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone for there is something for all that lies within these pages.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

TTT: "Forced" to read books

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I was "Forced" to Read in One Way or Another

TTT is hosted by the Broke and the Bookish.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - I read this book in high school and I loved it. I think this one is due for a re-read.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - I also read this one in high school and didn't take to it all that well, however I re-read it this summer and loved it. I will be re-reading it again in the upcoming month for a college course I'm taking.

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway - I just read this one for the same college class I mentioned above. This was my first Hemingway novel and I loved it! I can't wait to read more by him. 

Of Mice & Men by John Steinbeck - This is another one I read in high school that I really loved. I have been thinking about this one as of late and I think it's also due for a re-read.

A Good Man is Hard to Find (a short story) by Flannery O'Connor - When I first read this one in high school, I hated it! But it stuck with me for the second time I read it last fall in a college course, I actually really liked it. I loved the unexpectedness of this one and the different representations that can come out of it. 

Divergent by Veronica Roth - When I first heard about this book it was in comparison to The Hunger Games and I was completely turned off by that - I didn't want anything to replace The Hunger Games to me. However, after hearing how good this book was on a consistent basis, I decided to give it a try and boy, was it amazing!

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles - This book has been out for awhile and I kept resisting it thinking that it was one of those cheesy romances. After hearing how great it was from a trusty blogger, I succumbed and read it and fell in love with it.

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell - I don't know if I would have read this book had I not heard so many great things about it from the book/reading community. I'm so glad I gave this one a shot, what an amazing story!

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green - I was hesitant for so long to read this one, I was scared that it wouldn't live up to my high expectations that I gained from hearing how phenomenal this book is. I was also nervous for all the feels it would bring me. I don't regret diving into this book nor do I regret the feels it gave me. 

Cinder by Marissa Meyer - Another book that I don't think I would have picked up if it hadn't been all the good things I was hearing about it. I'm so glad that I branched out and read this one. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

October Stack of Five(or Six)!

Help me pick out a book (or two) to read and review this month! Voting will end on Wednesday :)

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Book Review | Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Title: Throne of Glass
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Publication: August 7th, 2012
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Source: Bought it

Rating: 5 out 5 stars

Synopsis: After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted for her freedom.

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another.

Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

Review: This is one of my favorites of the year! It is filled with assassins, magical elements, castles, and battles that will keep you turning pages. I loved the story, the characters and everything in this book, please mind my blubbering about how amazing this book is! 

We start by following Celeana and what an awesome strong female character to read about - she is fierce! Celeana is one tough chick that has a soft heart and a strong will to live and do anything she sets her mind to. I loved that she is one of the best assassins but so few know that she is a girl! She stood up for herself and I was so proud of her by the end of the book - she made a decision that most wouldn't have the courage to make and it was a great turning point in the book!

I am generally a fan of fantasy and this book is one of my favorite fantasies that I have read. I loved the story of a competition of the world's best criminals along with an underlying mystery surrounding the castle the same time the competition is occurring. This book is packed with action and there is never a dull moment!

I enjoyed the love triangle though I think it's a little heavily influenced on the one side than it is the other. I thought that both of Celeana's love interests, Dorian, the prince and Chaol, her trainer, are both good-looking men offering her completely different attributes and I find it hard to choose between which one I like more. I couldn't get enough of the story surrounding Celeana and her men.
I can't recommend this book enough. A strong book all around with a strong female, strong love and strong story that you won't be able to put down! I loved everything about this one and I'm looking forward to reading the second book, The Crown of Midnight.