The Problem With Forever by Jennifer E. Armentrout 

Publication Date: May 17th, 2016

“For some people, silence is a weapon. For Mallory “Mouse” Dodge, it’s a shield. Growing up, she learned that the best way to survive was to say nothing. And even though it’s been four years since her nightmare ended, she’s beginning to worry that the fear that holds her back will last a lifetime.

Now, after years of homeschooling with loving adoptive parents, Mallory must face a new milestone—spending her senior year at public high school. But of all the terrifying and exhilarating scenarios she’s imagined, there’s one she never dreamed of—that she’d run into Rider Stark, the friend and protector she hasn’t seen since childhood, on her very first day.

It doesn’t take long for Mallory to realize that the connection she shared with Rider never really faded. Yet the deeper their bond grows, the more it becomes apparent that she’s not the only one grappling with the lingering scars from the past. And as she watches Rider’s life spiral out of control, Mallory faces a choice between staying silent and speaking out—for the people she loves, the life she wants, and the truths that need to be heard.”

Review:

This was extremely emotional. I had this on an audiobook and I think it made me like it more than I would have in a regular book. I have to give props to the readers on the audiobook because they read with so much emotion that I honestly teared up many times. There were times where I went back and rewound it to listen to specific parts again because they were so wonderful.

The characters were written perfectly for the story. The story was so dark and heartbreaking that the characters fit amazingly. Mallory “Mouse” and Rider were so angsty and frustrating that I don’t think they could have been more perfect. Listening to their stories and thinking that they could relate to people in real life made it all the more saddening.

I just want to talk about “Mouse” herself. Her character was written so beautifully. I wanted to reach inside my radio and hug her. There was so much that her character not only went through, but realized throughout the book. It’s truly unbelievable how Jennifer Armentrout wrote her.

This book was especially an acknowledgement at “group homes”. You hear so much about group homes, whether kids got placed in great places, or they suffer where they are. This was a nod at the kids who don’t get placed in great homes. These kids suffer so much and it showed in the characters. Jennifer Armentrout did such a great job with the details and everything that came with this amazing book.

Rating: ★★★★★


The Loose Ends List by Carrie Firestone

Publication Date: June 7th, 2016

It’s a summer for first love, last wishes, and letting go.

Maddie has big plans to spend the last months before college tying up high school “loose ends” alongside her best friends. Then her beloved grandmother drops two bombshells: (1) Gram is dying. (2) She’s taking her entire family on a round-the-world cruise of dreams come true—but at the end, Gram won’t be returning home.

With a promise to live in the now without regrets, Maddie boards the Wishwell determined to make every moment count. She finds new friends in her fellow Wishwellians, takes advantage of the trip’s many luxuries, gets even closer to her quirky family, and falls for painfully gorgeous Enzo. But despite the copious laughter, headiness of first love, and wonder of the glamorous destinations, Maddie knows she is on the brink of losing Gram, and she struggles to find the strength to let go in a whirlwind summer shaped by love, grief, and laughter.”

Review:

This book broke my heart. Absolutely broke my heart. This was super hard to read for me because it brought back a lot of memories from when I lost a family member. If you recently lost a family member, this book might be triggering, or it might be very peaceful. It really is how you take it. I adored this book because it feels like it helped me heal some from the loss. If you a crier, have tissues ready.

Maddie is a girl who needs a reality check in life. She is living a life with her best friends that could send her in a spiral. She is supposed to be going to a party the night that her grandmother invites her entire family over. She thought it was going to be an engagement to her boyfriend, but she was very wrong. Going on a cruise where she is going to say goodbye to her grandmother forever? That’s not what Maddie planned for her summer.

This story did a wonderful job of showing the stages of grief. The heartbreak, denial, anger, sadness, depression, and hope really was prevalent throughout the entire book. Carrie Firestone made the reader feels like they are going through the same stages that the main character is feeling.   I am an emotional reader and there were a few times where I teared up, full on cried, and ended up smiling because she made it hopeful.

I was a little unsure about the romance part of this novel. However, going through and reading this from cover to cover, the romance was absolutely meant to be a part of this book. It made the story that much better. It wouldn’t be thought to have romance in a book where someone is dying, but it was very happy and really makes you think.

If there is a time where I go, I would love to be on this cruise. I wish it was a real thing. I would go and live my days happily and peacefully. This book gave me hope that there are people who live out their final days like that. Carrie Firestone really did a wonderful, wonderful job on this novel. This was probably one of my favorite books of this year.

Rating: ★★★★★

Weekly Wrap-Up: 9/9-9/16

Books Reviewed: 

Books Finished: 

Books Currently Reading:

Hope everyone has a great week!!

It’s Not Me, It’s You by Stephanie Kate Strohm 

Publication Date: October 25th, 2016

“One girl’s comedic examination of her dating past, as told by friends, family, and boys who were involved! Avery Dennis is a high school senior and one of the most popular girls in her class. But a majorly public breakup with the guy she’s been dating causes some disastrous waves. It is right before prom and Avery no longer has the perfect date. She runs the prom committee, how could she not show up with somebody? Post breakup, Avery gets to thinking about all the guys she has ever dated. How come none of those relationships ever worked out? Could it be her fault? Avery decides to investigate. In history class she’s learning about this method of record keeping called “oral-history” and she has a report due. So Avery decides to go directly to the source. Avery tracks down all the guys she’s ever dated, and uses that information, along with thoughts from her friends, family, and teachers, to compile a total account of her dating history. Avery discovers some surprises about herself and the guys she spent time with — just in time for prom night!”

Review: 

This book had a lot of potential and I liked the story. The synopsis sounded super cute and I was definitely intrigued. 

This book wasn’t totally for me unfortunately. I liked some parts and the characters, but there are definitely some things I would change.

The characters started out great and I liked them all. I really liked Avery’s attitude and how she was in general. However, throughout the book, there were just wayyy too many characters for me to understand and I really started to not like any of the characters. 

The only thing I really loved about this book was the ending. It was super cute and well thought out. I like everything about the ending. 

Overall, this book was good but confusing for me. There were too many characters and I had trouble understanding a lot. I’d recommend to readers that enjoy young adult and can keep up with multiple characters. 

Rating: ★★★

Midnight At the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew Sullivan

Publication Date: June 13th, 2017

“When a bookshop patron commits suicide, it’s his favorite store clerk who must unravel the puzzle he left behind in this fiendishly clever debut novel from an award-winning short story writer.

Lydia Smith lives her life hiding in plain sight. A clerk at the Bright Ideas bookstore, she keeps a meticulously crafted existence among her beloved books, eccentric colleagues, and the ‘BookFrogs’—the lost and lonely regulars who spend every day marauding the store’s overwhelmed shelves.
But when youngest BookFrog Joey Molina kills himself in the bookstore’s upper level, Lydia’s life comes unglued. Always Joey’s favorite bookseller, Lydia has been bequeathed his meager worldly possessions: Trinkets and books, the detritus of a lonely, uncared-for man. But when Lydia pages through his books, she finds them defaced in ways both disturbing and inexplicable. They reveal the psyche of a young man on the verge of an emotional reckoning. And they seem to contain a hidden message. What did Joey know? And what does it have to do with Lydia?
As Lydia untangles the mystery of Joey’s suicide, she unearths a long buried memory from her own violent childhood. Details from that one bloody night begin to circle back. Her distant father returns to the fold, along with an obsessive local cop and the Hammerman, a murderer who came into Lydia’s life long ago—and never completely left, as she discovers.” 

Review: 

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore was good! I enjoyed this spooky story since Halloween time is coming up! 

Lydia was so awesome. Her character went through so many things in her life and showed that she could be smart and powerful when it came to using her brain! She figured things out that I would never be able to. 

There are a lot of surprises in this book, especially towards the end. Some might say it was predictable, but I didn’t think so at all! It took me until it was right under my nose to understand what happened. 

I really enjoyed this story. It was something that I had never heard of or read before. I love the setting. Bookstores and libraries are my absolute favorite settings! Matthew Sullivan did a great job writing about the details of the bookstore. He wrote things that really grabbed my attention like “The sound of books hitting the floor from the second floor.” 

Overall, this book was spooky and suspenseful. I’d really recommend it to anyone especially those who like mysteries. 

Rating: ★★★★

Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Publication Date: August 5th, 2014

“When Tate Collins meets airline pilot, Miles Archer, she knows it isn’t love at first sight. They wouldn’t even go so far as to consider themselves friends. The only thing Tate and Miles have in common is an undeniable mutual attraction. Once their desires are our out in the open, they realize they have the perfect set-up. He doesn’t want love, she doesn’t have time for love, so that just leaves the sex. Their arrangement could be surprisingly seamless, as long as Tate can stick to the only two rules Miles has for her. Never ask about the past. Don’t expect a future. They think they can handle it, but realize almost immediately they can’t handle it all. Hearts get infiltrated. Promises get broken. Rules get shattered. Love gets ugly.”

Review: 

Wow. This book broke my heart, mended it back together, and repeated this cycle throughout the entire book.

I’ve read Colleen Hoover before, and she just gets it. She gets feelings and emotions, and she makes the reader feel along right with each character. In every Colleen Hoover book I’ve read, I’ve cried on more than one occasion. I’m a very emotional person when it comes to books and movies, but if her books don’t make you feel anything, I think there might just be something wrong.

This story is something unlike anything I’ve ever read. It was raw and emotional. The originality of this story is why I liked it so much. It felt real because of the reactions and demons that each person held onto. I’ve read stories with angst and heartbreak, but this was enough to make my chest hurt for a few hours.

Miles, Miles, Miles. I want to bring him up because he was my favorite character in this book. He went through so much in his life and learns how to deal with it. Even though in life, it’s hard to figure out what to do and when, but it was great to see that he could try and figure things out. I’m glad I got to read something like this. It was pretty motivational.

There were so many things that I loved about this book. If I had to list them all, this review would easily be over the necessary amount of words. I would give this book higher than 5 stars if I could.

Rating: ★★★★★

Weekly Wrap-Up: 9/2-9/9

Books Reviewed: 

Books Finished:

Books Currently Reading:

I went back to school this week so it’s been pretty crazy. Hope to read more this week. Have a great week everyone!