Tag Archive | teen fiction

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Alex, Approximately,” by Jenn Bennett

5/5 stars

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Uhh! I loved this book so much. Like, I can’t get over how good this book was. This is my first book ever that I’ve read from this author, and I honestly don’t know if this is her first one, but she did a damn great job. She’s such an amazing writer, and I’m proud of her for writing this book. The story line was amazing, the characters were super strong in terms of personality and character development, and the plot twist was different than what I was expecting but in a good way.

Enter Baily, aka Mink. She’s been talking to this guy, Alex, for a while online about movies and stuff, and he’s been inviting her to go to this film festival that happens in his town in California. They don’t know each other outside of the online chat, they don’t know their real names, nor where they live or none of that. The only that Bailey knows is that the town he lives in is where her dad lives and that she’s moving in with him. They have a great connection online, and Baily likes him a lot.

Bailey is sort of paranoid because of something that happened to her in the past, and that’s why she doesn’t tell Alex that she recently moved to his hometown, so instead she’s decided to find him on her own with the couple of clues and information he’s provided her over the time they’ve been talking.

Now, in the midst of finding Alex, Bailey gets a job and meets this guy named Porter, and OMG, Porter is sooooo sexy! Like I have him on my top 20 fav book boyfriend list. He’s a real jerk to her on the beginning, which immediately told me that he liked her. But, of course, Bailey can’t stand him. Uhhh! Did I mention that he was a surfer?

Anyways, that’s the line of the story and you have to read to find out about everything else. But I really did enjoy this cute story. It’s the perfect summer read! It talks about a summer romance, movies, surfing in Californian beaches, and more! BTW, the romance in this book is hot! The author doesn’t go into specific detail about what the characters do but she does make it happen. Anyone, 16 years and older can read! Would most certainly recommend!

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “When It’s Real,” by Erin Watt

3.5/5 stars

I did not like this story as much as I thought I was going to. First of all, the plot and story line are all wrong. The author decided to focus on the least important thing to develop the story. Second, the language of the book, the way the author wrote the characters was awful. I don’t know how old she is, but I don’t think she’s young enough to understand teen’s lingo these days. The way she wrote this story made it seem like she has two teenage children and she overheard them talk and then copied their conversation into the pages. I’m not even joking, some of the conversation between characters are so bad, that they made me cringe, and not in a good way.

She also writes without sentiment, which can be a good thing or a bad thing. But in this case, it felt like a bad thing. When you read her books, she doesn’t compare the characters emotion with anything. When she’s having the characters talk to each other, you don’t feel like their genuine because she focuses more on the physical part of the conversation instead of the emotional. When I’m reading a book, I want to make sure I feel what the character is saying and thinking. It’s a book, it’s supposed to 30731416make me feel their emotions. I don’t want to know that someone turns barely to the side, and she was talking. If I wanted that I would watch a movie.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think is bad that she went this route with her book, and I know some of you even appreciate it because she doesn’t get as poetical as the other authors. But when you read this book, you learn to appreciate the second-hand opinion that characters when describing things, people, or feelings–because you have a base of comparison, and as readers, it helps us a lot to understand what the character is going through.

I felt like there were so many things that she could have addressed in this, and others that honestly, she did not need to mention. Like, for example, Erin did not fully develop the actual emotions that Vaughn could have been feeling towards her parents. She could have gotten more into depth for that aspect. Also, she could have addressed Oakley’s relationship with his parents a little bit better. Oak has a strained relationship with his parents but it was also a great point to focus on for part of the story, instead of him going to stupid clubs for stupid reasons. Like, that was not as important as to solve his parents’ mystery.

The story itself had a lot of potentials, and if she would have gotten a different route with her plot twist, the book could have been way better. Something else that I didn’t like was how stupid the plot line was, I don’t want to give anything away, but I felt like there were more things that she could have made their “breaking point.” And she should have brought that plot twist part, (you know, the part where-everything-goes-wrong-before-it-gets-right part), sooner. She literally did it at the end, and not the middle end, but like a few pages from the end, giving us little to no space to wonder for the what if, or even the epilogue.

 

 

 

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “I see London, I see France,” by Sarah Mlynowski

26117336I love travel books, just because they get to be so fun, and you get to travel with the characters in the comfort of your house. I absolutely loved Sarah’s writing, I mean as I read along Sydney and her incredible journey with her best friend Leela, I felt like I was with them every part of the way. I also enjoyed the idea that Sarah made her characters older teens. I appreciate that they were 19 to 20-year-olds kids, and not younger–not that I have anything against younger characters but in the YA world is hard to find some older ones.

Anywho, the story follows the adventures Sydney and Leela as they go through Europe on their summer adventure. Big surprise happens when Leela’s ex also shows up for the ride, and they crash into him a couple of times in the country that they were visiting. Something that irritated me though was how quickly attached Leela got to her cheating ex-boyfriend, making her “love” him once again, and then resulting in being miserable for most of the trip when things wouldn’t go her way because of whatever mood her boyfriend manage to put her in. She got moody really quickly and that the hell out of me. I honestly think that the only thing that she did was prevent Sydney from enjoying the trip even further.

I also felt bad for Sydney because her mom was at home in the U.S. and she has an illness, and she had to check on her every once in a while. And well, that kept her from enjoying the trip as well. But all of that aside, Sydney does have a great time, she meets Leela’s ex-boyfriend’s friend, and a summer fling appears that has potential into turning into something else. I would definitely recommend if you like traveling and cute summer flings!

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Geekerella” by Ashley Poston

5/5 stars30724132

Beautiful story. I love this remake of Cinderella that Ashley has brought us. This is like the perfect modern/fangirl fairy tale that us, book lovers, needed.
Elle, aka Danielle, lives with her stepmother, aka step-monster, and her step-sisters. Elle is fed-up with everything that her stepmother makes her do, and since her father died the only thing that she has left for her is the show called “Starfield”. Her dad and she used to watch together all the time, so much so that her dad started a big convention just on the show itself many years ago, and now that’s all that she has from him.
Enter Darien, the super sweet actor who landed a the main role on the upcoming starfield movie. He is very determined to prove to the starfield audience that he can be their Federation prince, even though he puts a lot of pressure on himself, just because, like everyone else, he is a starfield fan! However, not everyone knows that, especially not Ella.
She’s extremely devastated that Darien Freedman got cast as the main role in the upcoming movie, and lets the world know about her distaste for him through her blog, which she pretty much fangirl about the show. They hate each other, but both of them go through the sort of the same situations despite living very different lives, and in the midst of all, they manage to find each other.
This story is hilarious, full of challenges, heartbreak, sadness, but overall, lots of love. Join Ashley in her incredibly different story of the Cinderella fairy tale, with a twist that as book lovers, we will love!

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “What To Say Next,” by Julie Buxbaum

4/5 stars

I love this story so much. I’ve read her other book before, “Tell me three things,” and I really did enjoy that one. So, when I started reading this one, I was expecting sort of the same theme. The way I see Julie as an author is like Kasie West, she writes cute contemporary teen romances and they are so much fun to read.

30199656However, when you first start this book you immediately realize that this is not your common YA romance. I’ve never read a book where a character suffered from an illness such as Aspergers, which I honestly find cool because not many choose to write about such topics just because they think that they won’t reach the desired target audience.

But in this case, Julie managed to incorporate the illness to a very handsome, weird and lonesome guy, in a way that transfixes us because we get to see the illness from his point of view.  David is a very smart young boy, with an incredibly brilliant mind and a witty mouth. Part of having Aspergers is always saying what’s on your mind without thinking about it first, and well this is the case of David.

Enter Kit, recently saddened and devasted by the loss of her in a car accident, she looks for comfort and silence at the table where David sits alone in their school cafeteria. Both of them manage to form an unusual friendship which in the future morphs into love.

They face a lot of challenges because David’s illness categorizes him as weird in his school, and people do not look kindly towards him. This story is all about confronting your fears, finding love in the least unexpected place, and being brave towards yourself and expressing your feelings. I would recommend to anyone that knows about someone with this type of illness, (and I’m not sure illness is the right word), and would like an another point of view on this topic. But it is also a beautiful story that teaches teens how to respect each other and treat each with love.

 

 

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Stranger than Fanfiction,” by Chris Colfer.

5/5 Stars.

This book was one of the most amazing reads I’ve read this year. The whole book is full of life, each character has its own world full of situations that are presented in the real one, in each one of our lives, and it’s so good to see yourself in each one of these characters. It’s hard to find a book where you can find a part of yourself in each one of them, but in this book, it was like so easy to identify with them.
Chris Colfer is an amazing author, and this book is written in the third person. It tells the story about four friends that are going on a road trip as a goodbye trip before they go to college, and as a joke, they invite one of their idols, from a tv show they all love, to join them on the trip. Big surprise happens when Cash Carter, tv star from the famous tv show “Wiz Kids,” decides to join them on their trip, and it will forever change their life.
Cash Carter is the superstar of the friend’s favorite show, they met because of this show, and now they are best friends because of it as well. However, when he joins the group of teenagers, they get the shock of their life when they realize he’s nothing like he is on tv. I mean, of course, they knew he was a character from tv, but the way he acted throughout the whole journey was so different from what they thought that it change their lives. He’s an interesting character fed up with all the “fame” and fortune of being an actor of a big show. He says that there are certain expectations with being an actor that people want him to follow, and he has for most of his life; however, he’s fed up with it, and decides to join four strangers in this random adventure.

31694016I love that Chris gives us a famous person point of view. We get to see how Cash is tired of people every time they meet him, they don’t want to meet Cash Carter, they want to me the character that he plays on the show, and that bothers him a lot. Sometimes we don’t realize that famous people get tired of being behind the camera, and easy for us to judge because well they have everything we don’t, but if you are an actor who;s has grown up behind the lens of a camera, you get tired of it and, well, I imagine that this is how Daniel Radcliffe must’ve felt growing up with Harry Potter, he had gotten tired at some point, and the only thing we did was judge him because of it. I do love this perspective on the book, it most certainly changes our views on that industry.
Topher—the random guy that’s super tall but is not because he plays basketball. He was the mastermind behind the trip and their driving in his mom station wagon. He has a disabled brother, and well that impeding him from going to the school he wants to go, and he decides to stay to help his mom with his brother. I’m mentioning this because it’s a very important factor towards the development of the book, in his life. Oh, and he also has a crush on Sam.that bothers him a lot.
Next, there’s Sam—you see there’s something about her, and I don’t want to give anything away because her secret we don’t see it coming until she tells us what it is. Chris Colfer manages to implement real life situations to these characters, and well, Sam’s secret, is a situation that we see happening every day in our lives, and that many teens deal with what Sam is going through, and that before the YA books didn’t use to talk about. I love the way the author portrayed Sam, and there was a scene in this book where Sam and Cash are on top of a roof, and the way Sam explains her situation to Cash to me is just so amazing, and I wish that teens and people from around the world realized this too. Sam even though she’s afraid, she’s super strong, she’s full of fear, and she keeps going. So, to all the teens that are going through her situation, please understand that you are not alone and that there’s always someone out there who understands you.
Joey is the son of a pastor, a very well respected pastor, loved and adored by their community, and well, his father condemns everybody that doesn’t follow the rules of God. Joey has a secret that is not is as bad, but in his circumstances, he faces challenges because of it. He’s afraid of what his family might think, and he’s afraid that his friends won’t accept him. This, again, is a situation that we see happening a lot in the YA community, and thank God more authors are talking about on the books. Chris doesn’t sugar coat it, and that’s one of the things that I loved about this book, how real it is. Not everything in this book is all fun and games, and things don’t end up well for all of them, but yet somehow they managed to find each other and stick through their friendship despites the secrets and lies, and that’s what every squad should be about.
Mo is a really interesting character. Her secret is not as big the other ones but is a secret nonetheless, and once again, it has to do with a parent perspective. Her father wants Mo going to a school she doesn’t want to go, and she’s faced with the challenge of refusing him, and he refusing to pay for education, or accepting his decision and being miserable for the rest of her life. There’s a scene in this book where she and Cash are in a car together driving like crazy, and Mo tells Cash that she never wanted to go to that school, the only reason she’s doing it, is because her father wants her to, and Cash is like “you can’t live your life the way other are expecting, you are supposed to live your life the way you want,” he didn’t say those exact same words, but it was something similar. And well, that scene stocked to me and made me realized that not everyone is going to be happy on how you go in life, things will be different, but you got to make sure that is the way you want it to go, not to please others.
In the end, we get to see why Cash Carter is living the way he is and behaving like crazy in this trip, and it makes me sad, but what he does in the end for this group of strangers is stranger than fanfiction.

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Goodbye Days,” By Jeff Zetner.

This book is highly underrated and I feel like the story line is needed to be read everyone, not just teens, adults should read this book too. I gave this book 4 stars out of 530649795 just because it was a little slow to start. This is the first book I read from Jeff, and I have to say I’m really impressed.
Goodbye Days follows the story of Carver, who sends a text that kills his three best friends in a car accident. Apparently, he was waiting for them, and they were driving to meet him, and he sent the text to see where they were, and well, texting and driving is not a good thing. I felt bad for Carver throughout this whole book because the people blamed him for the deaths of his friends, even himself, and he suffers so much. They are taking him to trial because of it, looking to press criminal charges against him. And need I remind you that he’s only 17, so the stress level that he’s feeling is so overwhelming that he starts having panic attacks. I think that the only thing that helps him get through his depression are Jesmyn, one of the best friends widowed-girlfriend, his sister Grace, and his therapist Dr. Mendez.
His sister acted the way I would have if my brother was going through a situation like this, God forbids, she’s the older sister that every kid should have. She was the one who recommended the therapist, and I believe that kids should realize this, that if you have a problem going on in your life, and it’s best if you talk it out with someone, don’t be afraid of getting help, it would make you feel so much better, you just gotta give a chance.
In the midst of losing his three best friends, one of the fathers of the friends is a Judge, he’s the one pressing charges to Carver. The sister of one of his best friends hates him to death because she blames him for the death of her brother. And not to mention that he just keeps remembering his friends on the different stages of his life.
He decides is a good idea to have some sort of goodbye days to his best friends, a sort of way of letting go, and he does so with each of the families. This book is incredibly sad, I cried like a baby, please be careful when you are driving out there, DO NOT TEXT AND DRIVE, because I would hate for something to happen to you over negligence just like it happened to Carver.
This book teaches us a lesson, and I just hope that we learn it before it’s too late.