Friday, 28 March 2014

Book Buying Habits

So, I've been watching BookTube for a long, long time now (online book community on YouTube), and I always see the book vloggers come out with these cool, fun looking tags! So I've decided to tag myself and post it to my blog. :) (The video originated from Megan Olivier!)

Without further ado, let's get started!

1.Where do you buy your books from? 
A number of places, but the places that I'm consistently buying books from are Chapters/Indigo's/Coles and the Book Outlet. 

Chapters/Indigo's/Coles because they're all so close to home and the hardcovers are 30% off online! Then there's Book Outlet because they're books are even cheaper than that! I think the most I've paid for a book off of there website is $7.99 for a hardcover!

2.Do you ever pre orders book and if so do you do this in store or online?
I do! Quite often, actually. Especially when I'm really excited for a book! I will always order it online. This way, I don't have to worry about picking it up or anything since it will be delivered straight to my door-step!

3.On average, how many books do you buy a month?
Eesh, definitely way more than I should. I've actually started to keep track of how much money and how many books I'm buying a month in an excel sheet. I'm averaging about 11 books a month so far this year... Poop. :(

4.Do you use your local library?
No... And it's not really anything I plan on starting to use anytime soon. I love my books. I love buying them, I love reading them, I love smelling them, and I love owning them. Those things would be a little weird and gross to do if I got them from the library. Not to mention illegal...

5.If so, how many books can you/do you borrow at a time?
Not applicable to me!

6.What is your opinion on library books? 
Oh, I'm kind of repeating myself here, but they're just not my thing. I love owning my books and being able to see all the ones I've read over the years and keep the ones that I've loved and even see the ones go that I hated. I wish to have my own library someday. :D

7.How do you feel about charity shop/second hand books?
I have bought a couple of them! But for the most part I don't go looking for them. I find a lot of them smell old and dusty and that smell really doesn't sit well with me. Actually, I've had to stop reading a book before due to that very reason. 

8.Do you keep your read and TBR pile together/on the same book shelf or not? 
I do! I have a little double-stacked book case that comes up to my chest with three shelves in it. I also have a shelf that's nailed to my wall that holds some of the books I've yet to read.... And that's just at my dad's house, haha.

9.Do you plan to read all of the books that you own? 
Of course I do! That's always my intention when I buy new books. Never have I ever bought a book for the sole purpose of having it sit on my shelves. Now, getting around to actually reading it? That's another story... (see what I did there)

10.What do you do with books that you own that you feel you will never read/felt you did not enjoy?
I get rid of them! I find going through my books is just like going through my wardrobe. Some books I grow out of and some books I don't like anymore or some book I didn't like once I tried them on. These are the books that I will say goodbye to. This usually happens every couple of months and I'll get a pile of about 10 every time. :)

11.Have you ever donated books?
I have! This is exactly what I do with the books I no longer want. Usually a donation company will call my house sometime soon after I've gone through my shelves, or them calling is what will prompt me to go through my shelves, and I'm just glad to be rid of them so easily. 

12.Have you ever been on a book buying ban? 
I have. But it never works. Whenever I get off of it I go book crazy and end up buying way more books than I would have if I'd never put myself on the ban in the first place.

13.Do you feel that you buy too many books?
No. I mean, I do buy an accessive amount and probably more than I need to. But, I do I consider it too much? Not at all. The way I see it is I'm spending my hard earned money on the things that I love. And do I ever love books!
If any of you guys do this tag for yourself, link it for me down below! I would love to see them! :)

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Before I Die by Jenny Downham

Before I Die by Jenny Downham
 RATING: 3.5/5

If I were to use one word to describe BEFORE I DIE by Jenny Downham, it would be depressing. This book is extremely depressing. There are no true happy moments in this book, only moments that are just sad.

However, I did like how Tessa acted while having cancer. While it was extremely sad and gloomy, it was believable and realistic and traumatizing. I could feel Tessa’s low spirits creep into me as I read the book. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t finish this book with a heavy heart.

When Tessa realizes that she can’t let her cancer dictate how she’s going to live the rest of her life, she makes up a list of ten things that she wants to do before it consumes her. At the very beginning of the book we cross off the very first on her list: sex.

The beginning of this book bothered me quite a bit and made me feel uncomfortable with the way Tessa started crossing off the things on her list. She did it in a very dark and haunted way that made me cringe on the inside. Although the rest of the book always has that dark under-tone to it, you can begin to see that Tessa is starting to have her happier moments as we get closer to the 150 page mark. But use the term “happier” loosely because I just want you guys to understand how extremely depressing I thought this book was.

Bleh. I’m just going to end my review here because simply thinking about this book is making me sad.


Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Shatter Me by Thereh Mafi

Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1)RATING: 3.5/5

        **May contain minor spoilers**

So. It looks like I’m in the minority for this book.

I’m going to be honest with you. I have no idea how to start off this book review. I willfully admit that it disappointed me in so many ways. Juliette’s powers were never explained. Why can Warner and Adam touch her? Why did she desire Warner in ANY way when he forced her to do all that stuff she CLEARLY did not want to do. I can honestly not understand why ANYONE would be Team Warner after all the lunatic shit that he did.

The writing style for this book was really cool… At first. I kind of associated the cross-offs with her sanity. It’s pretty easy to tell that Juliette isn’t 100% stable (not that I blame her). But just when it seems she’s getting her shit together and acting normal, she’ll think something she shouldn’t be thinking and cross it out. Towards the 250 page mark it started to get very annoying for me.

Speaking of the writing style… THE METAPHORS. Some of them were really pretty and powerful, but I know a lot more left me when a look of confusion on my face than they should have. For example, that one about the rose petals. Can someone please explain that one to me? I don’t get it!

Now. Juliette and Adam’s relationship. I understand that they have a past history together, but does Juliette really know Adam? I think my biggest problem was how eager they were to take each other’s clothes off.

Half way through the book it looked like to me that I wasn’t going to bother picking up the second one. But once Kenji showed them that I place (I’m trying to be vague here to avoid spoilers) I became A LOT more interested and I definitely plan on picking up the next one now. :)

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Safe With Me by Amy Hatvany

Safe with MeRATING: 5/5

Wow. How do I even begin? This book was exactly what I wanted and then some. I’d never heard of this book before visiting Costco with my mom yesterday. You have no idea how happy I am that I went with her after finishing this book.

How do I describe the difficulties of Olivia’s life? When she first met James he was charming, kind, funny; absolutely everything you would want from a man. So when he proposed to her, how could Olivia say no? But not long after moving in with him, he would say things that made small bells go off in her head. But her sweet, charming James couldn’t have possibly meant it in that way, right? He must have just had a rough day at work

. A year later, Olivia and James have their beautiful daughter Madelyn and nothing could be better. Fast-forward a couple more years and James has taken his slight jabs too far. Far enough that Olivia decides she needs to take Maddie and run far, far away. But then the unspeakable happens. Maddie gets sick with a liver disease and Olivia knows she can’t afford the treatments on her own. How can she leave James now?

A couple years later, Hannah’s daughter Emily has been hit by a car. After being rushed to the hospital and hours of surgery have gone by, Emily is alive… but only because of the life support the hospital’s machines are providing for her. The doctor asks Hannah if her daughter was an organ donor. There’s a 15 year old girl in dire need of a liver transplant and time is of the essence. 

Knowing this is what Emily would want, Hannah donates everything that’s left of her daughter in order to save the lives of many others, one of them being Maddie.

A year later, Hannah and Olivia meet by coincidence and become very close very fast. This is a story of family, friendship and courage. So much courage.

I loved this book so much more than I ever expected to. I cared for these characters more than I ever expected to. I don’t think I’ve ever cared for any fictional character as much as I cared for Hannah, Maddie and Olivia.

Watching these three girls go through their own forms of grief and struggle was so incredibly moving. All three of their stories demanded to be heard through Hatvany’s writing style. It was very simple and yet very elegant, and I think that is why it worked so well.

Nothing about this book was black and white. Everything was a millions shades of gray. The pacing was beautiful, the situation was so believe and so heart breaking on all accounts that I found myself tearing up on multiple occasions.

There is not a single flaw that I am able to identify in this book. There is not a single person that I would not recommend this book to. There is not a page that I didn’t love within this book.

Please, just read this book. It is definitely the kind of book that leaves its mark on you.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

The Power of Six by Pittacus Lore

The Power of Six by Pittacus Lore
           Rating: 4.5/5

The Power of Six picks up right where I Am Number Four left off and does not let you catch your breath for one second. Throughout the entire novel there is nothing but action, action, ACTION!!! And while this was a very good thing in my eyes (the real only reason why I gave it such a high rating), there was little to no character development to be heard of.

In fact, a lot of the decisions the characters made caused me to freak out at them and how stupid they are (but only in my head, of course). There were three of four decisions that I just couldn’t believe these kids were making (and you’ll probably know which ones I’m thinking about if you’ve read the book). The decisions lead to nothing but trouble (obviously), which could have been avoided SO EASILY if they just knew when to TURN AROUND and MOVE ON. (This is why I kept from giving it a full five stars)

This book is still extremely good, though. If you like plot driven books more than character driven books this series is definitely for you, because once this plot started, it made no stops until the very end.


Tuesday, 11 March 2014

A Temptaion of Angels by Michelle Zink

A Temptation of Angels RATING: 3/5

I’m sad to use the first few words of this review to say that A Temptation of Angels was a bit of a let-down for me. I am quite a fan of Zink’s Prophecy of the Sisters series (at least the first two that I read), and I was very excited to read her fourth novel for that reason.

Although, one would never be able to guess that this was Zink’s fourth book from the way it was written. The writing style was extremely simple, there wasn’t much explanation to why the Keepers existed and the plot was mediocre at best.

During the beginning of the novel I kept rolling my eyes at Helen and her foolishness. Her trust in the brothers came all too quickly and easily, and even though she claimed her words never failed her she was often contradicting herself when she couldn't help but stumble over them.

At the beginning of the book her attraction to Griffin was a little creepy, more so because I pictured her as a 13 or 14 year old girl and him as a 20-something year old man. Ew. *shivers*

Also, the romance of this novel became highly annoying towards the end. Just after declaring she only loved one of the boys as a “friend,” when earlier she declared that she loved the other, not too far from then she found herself “desiring” the first one. THIS. IS. RIDICULOUS. YA romance, WHY U MAKE NO SENSE?!?!

However, the letter that she received from her father was very cute and heart-warming and I really liked it. I also really liked how much of an influence the parents had on Helen throughout the entire novel. So while this book was a bit of a disappointment for me, I still liked it enough to give it a 3/5 rating.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Road to High Saffron by Jasper Fforde

Shades of Grey: The Road to High Saffron (Shades of Grey #1)
           RATING: 3.5/5

Shades of Grey is a very humorous and sometimes confusing book. When I first started reading this book I was immediately confused since a lot of the books objects and pop culture references are mostly left to you to put two and two together to figure out what they are. Luckily, I was in the right mood to read this book and its smart writing style had my brain cranking a lot more than usual and I quite enjoyed that.

Because of the way this book is written, you’re going to need to put a good amount of time off to the side to read and fully enjoy this book. Unfortunately for me, I read a majority of it on my lunch break at work and I think that it really pulled away from the books full story.

However, during the last 150 pages everything really starts to pull together and I started to really enjoy it a lot more than I was and I quickly dedicated a whole night to finishing up this book.

A solid book for me and I’m actually super excited to get my hands on the next book (which I think will be much more exciting now that I know what to expect from the writing style).

Friday, 7 March 2014

The Originals by Cat Patrick

The Originals RATING: 5/5 

To put it as simply as possible, Patrick’s THE ORIGINALS is about three triplets who find out that they’re actually clones of one another. They’re mom is worried that she’ll be discovered for unethical research and decides to hide them away as one person: Elizabeth Beth. For the next ten years of their lives, Lizzie, Beth, and Ella live as one person and take each day in shifts… This all goes quite well until two of the girls have their first crushes. From here the story takes off, one of self-discovery and exploration.

Let me start saying that I LOVE Patrick’s novels. The love in them feel so earnest and real and it’s written in such a way that I can’t help but fall in love with this book. Lizzie is the MC for the entire book (which I think was a fantastic idea instead of splitting it up between the three… That would have been confusing) and I just love her and adore her to pieces… She kind of reminds me of me, a little bit. Her relationship with Sean is beautiful and screams of first-love and adorable and I just loved it so much (mostly because it reminds me of me and my boyfriend c:)!

The plot of this book is so unique and it is carried out and executed so well. The pacing was beautiful and always kept me glued to the pages, it was never dull or boring and I never once rolled my eyes at any of the characters.

What I love so much about Patrick’s novels is the genre, oddly enough. They focus on a contemporary, coming-of-age feel but you always get this unique si-fi twist thrown into it and I just can’t help but love her ideas. They’re all so unique and original and I just think she deserves a huge pat on the back and extreme notice for this.

Needless to say, I really need to get on to reading the rest of her books (Forgotten and Just Like Fate).

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L. Armentrout

White Hot Kiss (The Dark Elements, #1) Rating: 3/5

Armentrout’s WHITE HOT KISS is an addicting book. I flew through just over half of it in a couple of hours. However, this book did not wow me like I expected it to. After hearing so much about her Lux series (and after reading Obsidian), I honestly expected this book to be pretty close to a knock-out. But it wasn’t. While the details and plot in WHK were different from its counter-parts in Obsidian, WHK still gave me a feeling of similarity to Obsidian. The voice of Layla felt really similar to the MC in Obsidian and she seemed to always have love on her mind. Plus some of the decisions she made were so incredibly DUMB! YOU DO NOT FOLLOW A DEMON – NO MATTER WHAT ITS RANK – INTO A DARK, SECLUDED ALLY. NEVER! EEVVVEERRRR!! And then there was the whole part where she didn’t tell anyone about Roth and a couple of other things that also made me shake my head.

Also, this may sound odd, but the cover and spine of this book just look so disappointing. The cover is just horribly disgusting – you’d think Harlequin Teen could do better than that (unless they were going for a Harlequin romance kind of feel) – in a way I will never be able to explain. The spine is just so BORING. The back of the book is merely acceptable in my books. I think it would be better without the tag line down the left half of it. REMOVE IT!

But, this book still has it’s redeeming qualities. Even though I found nothing special about it and definitely was never moved by it, it was still entertaining. Armentrout’s style is quick, easy & HOLY COW ADDICTING. Overall, I liked this guy.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Winterling by Sarah Prineas

Winterling by Sarah PrineasRating: 3/5

Cute, quick and easy to read. This book was fun and entertaining and I liked reading it. :)

Jennifer (or "Fer") is often pestered, teased and even bullied at school. Because of this, Fer often feels like she doesn't fit in. And she is right on more levels than she knows...

After having a rough day at school, Fer decides to take the long way home so she can en

joy the outdoors more than usual since her Grand-Jane keeps her under lock and key at home. Upon coming home, Fer's Grand-Jane gets angry and scolds her for arriving home late. Coming home to this after her already stressful day at school, Fer escapes the house the first chance she gets. Feeling alone and isolated, she runs into the forest near their house until she fins a small pond that is just like her. Alone and isolated.

Collapsing in front of the pond, Fer touches the surface of the pond to cool off and... Falls into a whole new world.

This is where things take off. Fer meets Rook and the Lady of the Land and is quickly whisked away on an adventure of self-discovery and bravery.

As I said in my little mini-review at the top... This book is fun and cute and easy to read... And it's not really much else. It's not life-altering. It's not heart-shattering, but it's not a book that you make you feel with your whole heart, either.

However, that is not to say that this book is not at least a little bit of each of these things. WINTERLING is a fun book that would be great to introducing someone in this age group (8-12) to the world of reading. Again, it was nice, fun, cute & quick to read. :)

I liked Winterling and that's about that. :)