Category Archives: Young Adult

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Standard

Follow my blog with Bloglovin!

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Thirteen Reasons Why Book CoverFive Stars

Clay Jensen goes home from school one day and finds a package on his door step. He wasn’t expecting a package and he is eager to find out what’s inside. He rushes in to open it, but what he finds leaves him wishing he would have left the package closed up tight. Inside are cassette tapes from Hannah Baker, his crush, schoolmate, and co-worker- or at least she was until she committed suicide two weeks ago. Clay can’t believe what is on the tapes. Hannah has recorded and left behind the thirteen reasons that led up to her fatal decision. Clay is now following the events that brought Hannah to her final moments and he can’t believe what he will discover along the way.

I loved so many things about this book! I think it is so eye opening as to what can lead up to someone’s decision to take their own life. It doesn’t take a huge soul crushing event, but sometimes it can just be the little things that snowball into something that was just too much to handle. Asher does an outstanding job at showing the delicacy of this topic and he even gives a lot of important information on the topic without sounding too informative. Hannah’s thirteen reasons will make us all stop and think about what we say about others, how we treat others, and how our decisions may greatly impact those around us. Sometimes our words and actions may seem harmless, but Thirteen Reasons Why shows us that we can never underestimate what toll our actions will have on another person’s life.

Advertisements

The Delirium Trilogy by Lauren Oliver

Standard

Follow my blog with Bloglovin!

The Delirium Trilogy by Lauren Oliver

Delirium Book Cover 4-stars

Pandemonium Book Cover Five Stars

Requiem Book Cover 4-stars

As you can tell by my star ratings Pandemonium was my favorite book in the Delirium trilogy, but I did really enjoy the entire series. I think book two was my favorite because I am a Julian fan! 🙂 I really hope I’m not biting off too much for one blog post by doing all of these books together, but I am going to give it a shot.

Delirium is a great opening to the trilogy. The relationship between Alex and Lena and really drew me into the story. I also really like Hanna’s character in the first book. I like how we could see love in their friendship and that the “delirium” was not only found in romantic love. The ending was so good and I picked up the second book immediately! I wish I could say more, but I don’t want to give too much of the ending.

Pandemonium was my favorite book of the series! I love, love, love the relationship between Lena and Julian. He seems so sincere and authentic. I also enjoyed getting to know the characters from the homestead as we go through their trials in the wilds. And like the first books the ending was amazing in this book! It was literally jaw dropping for me.

Requiem was good and it did wrap up the series, but it was not my favorite book of the trilogy. Hanna’s character had for obvious reasons changed a lot and I did not really like her character that much. And I really did not like what happened to Lena’s family after her escape into the wilds. I also struggled with the Lena-Alex-Julian drama. I personally was a Julian fan until the very end!

Well, I’m trying to keep this review short and simple without giving away too much of the book. Overall, I really enjoyed the series! Each book had really greats parts and awesome characters. I enjoyed the premise of the “delirium” and I definitely recommend this series (probably to a female audience- there’s a lot of romance)!

Eve by Anna Carey

Standard

Follow my blog with Bloglovin!

Eve Book CoverEve by Anna Carey

Three Stars

 

This book had such an awesome premise that I just had to pick it up and read it. However, even though I did enjoy the book it did not quite live up to the high hopes I had. It is hard for me to give any type of review on this book without giving away some important details so…

***WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD***

Eve is an orphan just like all the other girls she lives with at school. After the virus wiped out much of the population most kids are orphans. Eve has always pushed herself to excel in school because she wants to be able to move to the City of Sand after graduation and serve the king and her city. However, the night before graduation Eve finds out that she will not be training for a new career across the lake, but rather she will be used to repopulate the world along with her fellow (and former) classmates. The horror of what Eve finds on the other side of the lake leaves her no choice, but to run and leave behind everything she has ever known and everything she thought was safe. The book then follows Eve on her adventures through the wilds, freedom, and love.

Like I said, even though the book was decent and the premise was great there were some things I took issue with. First, why were Eve and her classmates educated for years just to be impregnated and used for their fertility? I’m not sure I can buy into that idea. Second, Eve escaped so easily and found help without even trying. She describes how protective her teachers were and she talks about the guards and then she all but walks off of the school grounds. Third, Eve leaves her best friends behind to endure this horrific fate. I mean she does say she will come back for them, but what if it was too late then? For a girl with no family and no other friends or even acquaintances in the World would she really be able just to leave them behind? The book had flaws, but overall it was enjoyable if you didn’t try to analyze the world too deeply. I will eventually read the rest of the trilogy because I think the book was at least worth that.

 

 

The Selection by Kiera Cass

Standard

Follow my blog with Bloglovin!

The Selection by Kiera Cass

The Selection Book Cover

4-stars

I have had so, so many people tell me this book was a mix between The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and ABC’s television show The Bachelor (which I have to admit is my weekly guilty pleasure). I figured if this book was any kind of combination of those two things then it had to be awesome. Well, here’s the thing the book is great, but I don’t think it is anything like The Hunger Games except for the fact that she, America Singer, was randomly (or maybe not) drawn for “The Selection” and that people are sorted into castes by the government.

But like I said I did enjoy the book, however, it is much more like The Bachelor than The Hunger Games so you guys out there might want to steer clear of this title. 🙂

***WARNING: SPOILERS MAY FOLLOW***

The Selection begins with a girl who is fiercely in love with the wrong guy. When that relationship ends in disaster she heads to the castle of Prince Maxon in order to find refuge, if not love. Once America arrives at the castle it is drama on top of drama with a little romance mixed in. If you have ever watched The Bachelor you know the show is just like that too! Slowly (or not so much), the thirty-five girls are weeded down to the “The Elite” (but not with infamous rose ceremonies). The book is just as straight forward as you would imagine, but I found myself drawn in anyways. There was humor, romance, drama, and a main character with an ever changing heart. I can’t wait to read, The Elite, the second book in the Selection trilogy by Kiera Cass!

Legend by Marie Lu

Standard

Follow my blog with Bloglovin!
Again, I want to apologize for not writing more frequently. I have really been slacking in the blogging part of my life. I think I am getting the hang of this mommy thing and I hopefully will be able to squeeze blogging time in regularly. I have read so many books in the past month or so that I really do have a lot to write about. So here we go…

Legend Book Cover

Legend by Marie Lu

4-stars
What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic’s wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic’s highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country’s most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths – until the day June’s brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family’s survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias’s death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.

Full of nonstop action, suspense, and romance, this novel is sure to move readers as much as it thrills. (from http://www.amazon.com/)

I read a lot of dystopian books and truthfully I enjoy most of them, but I felt that this one was just a step above most and that is saying a lot. I had heard so much about that book that I was hesitant that it could really be that good, but in my honest opinion it really did live up to it’s own hype. Lu’s dystopian world has an intriguing political side that makes this book hard to put down. The characters (especially the main two- Day and June) are awesome! What I really enjoyed about them is that though they are on opposite sides you find yourself loving both of them. And then when the plot twist comes at the end you find yourself just as torn as the characters themselves. I also enjoyed how the story was told back and forth between Day’s point of view and June’s. Their stories begin so differently and how they view the world is so different that it makes the story unique in the way that one just picks up telling the story where the other left off. I have so many good things to say about this book and some are specifics, but I don’t want to give too much away. But I do highly recommend that you go read this book now!

Please follow me on Twitter @LaurenMaxon!

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen

Standard

Along for the Ride Book CoverAlong for the Ride by Sarah Dessen

4-stars

Ever since her parents began fighting, Auden has been unable to sleep at night. Now, spending a summer at a charming beach town with her father and his new family, she has to find new places to pass the time she spends awake. And so she meets Eli, a fellow insomniac who becomes her nighttime guide. Together, they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she has missed; for Eli, to come to terms with the death of a friend. In her trademark blockbuster-style, Sarah Dessen creates a powerful and irresistible story of two people learning how to connect.  (summary from http://www.amazon.com/)

Okay, I think the standard summary found on Amazon.com and found on the cover of the book is good. I mean it made me pick the book up and read it, but it by no means does this book justice! This book is refreshing! With a beach setting, a cute boy, first love, and best friends this book is a must read!

***WARNING: THE FOLLOWING  CONTAINS SPOILERS!***

What I liked:

I like Eli! He is different than a lot of guys in romance novels. He is not great with words, he is not cocky, he is not the answer to all of her problems, he is just simply there. And as all girls know that is usually all we need…just someone to be there. 🙂

I liked Maggie…to be honest I cannot think of a character I did not like in this book (with the exception of Auden’s mother). The characters were what made this story such an enjoyable read!

I liked that Auden grows without losing who she is! She is different at the end of the novel, but she is still intelligent and hard-working. I find that often times books make it seem that if a girl finds herself she must give up her dignity, intelligence, honesty, and just most of her overall good qualities. I hate that! Dessen does an awesome job of keeping her characters lovable and helping them become who they want to be at the same time!

I LOVED ELI AND AUDEN! They still make me smile!

I LOVED that this novel showed you can be feminine and intelligent at the same time. Imagine that…

What I did NOT like:

I did NOT like Auden’s mother she was well….unfriendly…to say the least…

I did NOT like Auden’s random moment with Jake in the beginning. It seemed very out of character and not really important for the plot.

I did NOT like that the story had to end! I wanted more of Eli and Auden!!!

Overall, I highly recommend this book and I cannot wait to read more by Sarah Dessen!

What is your favorite Sarah Dessen novel? What are some other romance authors and/or books that you love? I would love to read your thoughts in the comments below! Oh, and feel free to follow me on Twitter!

 

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys

Standard
Out of the Easy Book CoverOut of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
4-stars
It’s 1950 and the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie Moraine wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer. She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street.Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.
With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny. (summary from http://www.amazon.com/)


I really liked this book! I can’t say that I fell in love with it the way I did Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys, but I did enjoy the story. And in all fairness Between Shades of Gray is one of my all-time favorite books so it’s going to be hard for anyone to beat!


***WARNING: THE FOLLOWING  CONTAINS SPOILERS!***

What I liked:

I liked (actually LOVED) Josie’s character. Her determination, her independence, her work ethic, her intelligence, just everything about her made her an awesome character!

I liked many of the relationships that Sepetys developed throughout the book, but none of them beat the relationship between Cokie and Josie! When Cokie gave Josie that thermos I just wanted to cry because of his genuine love for Josie!

I liked Willie. She was tough, but she had a soft spot and I liked that Sepetys let that peek through every now and then.

I liked the setting! New Orleans in the 1950’s…it was just great!

What I did NOT like:

I did NOT like Patrick’s character very much. I was never cheering for him and Josie to have a relationship. I guess you could say I was team Jesse from the very beginning.

I did NOT like that Willie died and so unexpectedly! I was really bummed about that…

I did NOT like Shady Grove…or did I? I felt nervous every time she was there and I’m not really sure why. Maybe the suspense of it made it a good part of the book…or maybe not…I can’t decide…

Read Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys and share your thoughts on Shady Grove, Jesse, and the rest of the story in the comments below!

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

Standard

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

“One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time.”

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase’s family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself? (summary from http://www.amazon.com/)

I absolutely LOVED this book! It was a title that I just stumbled upon in the library one day when I was browsing.  I picked it up because I needed a break from all of the dystopian fiction and  I am so glad that I chose this book. I loved the romance, the characters, and the suspense of Sam’s big decision.

***WARNING: THE FOLLOWING  CONTAINS SPOILERS!***

What I liked:

I liked the characters…especially the Garrett family. They were so quirky and loving and the combination just made them irresistible.

I liked Jase and Sam…their relationship was adorable. It’s the type of relationship you quickly find yourself cheering for.

I liked the mystery/suspense of Sam’s big decision.

I liked the shock I experienced when I found out Sam’s mom and boyfriend were the guilty party!

I liked the description of the Garrett’s home and front yard. It made me smile every time.

What I did NOT like:

I did not like Sam’s mom or her boyfriend, but I guess their terrible personalities were needed for the story line.

I honestly cannot think of anything else that I did not like. I just got hooked on this book and I thoroughly enjoyed it from beginning to end!

 

Reached by Ally Condie

Standard

Reached by Ally Condie

After leaving Society and desperately searching for the Rising—and each other—Cassia and Ky have found what they were looking for, but at the cost of losing each other yet again: Cassia has been assigned to work for the Rising from within Society, while Ky has been stationed outside its borders. But nothing is as predicted, and all too soon the veil lifts and things shift once again.( Summary taken from http://allycondie.com/books )

When I read the first book in this series I fell in love with the trilogy. I loved the world that Condie created, I loved the characters (especically Xander!) and I really liked the premise in general. After finishing Matched I was psyched to start reading Crossed, but somewhere in the middle of Crossed I lost a lot of my love for this trilogy. I mean Crossed wasn’t terrible, but it definitely didn’t grab me like Matched. I was hoping that Crossed had just suffered from a little bit of middle book syndrome so I went ahead and picked up Reached. I went in with an open and I was totally hoping that Reached would redeem this trilogy. Unfortunately, I didn’t feel that Reached revived my love for this series.

***WARNING: THE FOLLOWING  CONTAINS SPOILERS!***

What I liked:

I liked that Xander found someone who appreciated him

I liked that Cassia finally found it in herself to dance and sing

I liked that Cassia, Ky and Xander all played a part in finding the cure

What I did NOT like:

I did not like that Ky and Cassia’s story was so bland…there was never a moment where I questioned whether they would end up together…I guess to me that was boring!

I did not like that Indie died

I did not like that Hunter went crazy

I did not like how the Rising ended up just being the new society

I did NOT like how the trilogy ended…Cassia and Ky standing on the stairs looking out at the city with their future still unknown….that is just too open ended and predictable for the end of a trilogy…

Overall, I was just disappointed in the end of this trilogy. It started out with such awesome possibilities and then it just tapered out after that. I mean it wasn’t terrible or anything, but it also wasn’t anything spectacular.