Friday, May 31, 2019

REVIEW: Revealed by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Revealed (The Missing, #7)

After a mysterious cameo from Charles Lindbergh, it’s up to Jonah to save his town in the seventh book of the New York Times bestselling The Missing series, which Kirkus Reviews calls “plenty of fun and great for history teachers as well.

It’s morning as usual at the Skidmore household—until Charles Lindbergh, the famous historical pilot, appears in their living room. Jonah can hardly believe his eyes—and then Lindbergh grabs Katherine and vanishes again. And that’s not all. Chip, Andrea, and all the other children from the plane have disappeared too. And worst of all, Jonah’s parents and all the other adults in his town have de-aged into children.

Jonah is the only one left, and the only one who can save everyone. With the help of de-aged JB and Angela, he has to collect the clues. And they lead directly back to Gary and Hodge, and a terrible plot that could mean the end of everything Jonah has ever loved. Can Jonah put the pieces together before time runs out?



NOTE: This is the seventh book in a series.



MY THOUGHTS
I remember a time Before Goodreads when I had a small piece of paper taped to my bookcase of all of the release dates for the next books in series. I remember writing the release date for Revealed and thinking "2014! Boy, that's so long from now! I'll be done with high school then!" Well, it's now 2019 and I finally got around to reading this book. My younger self would be upset with me, but even though it took a while for me to put up this book, I was not disappointed.

When I read Risked the other day I was disappointed for some reason. It was good, but I did not feel like a whole lot happened. In this book, so much happens! I feel like it is so hard to really go into details on what happened in this book because there are a lot more complicated elements in this book (and I'll sound crazy trying to explain it)! There's a lot more time travel and so many paradoxes and running around through time that my head was spinning! There were elements rooted in history, but this book was a lot different than the other books in the series! Jonah isn't helping another child in their time period, he's trying to save his sister and fix time and a whole lot of other stuff! I'm actually really impressed by all of the timelines and I'm honestly curious how Haddix kept track of everything! Sometimes I was so confused that I wasn't sure what was real and what wasn't and I got tired of things getting explained to me rather than actually seeing some parts, that's why this doesn't have a full five stars, but I am impressed by how time travel was used in this book.

There is so much of a greater focus on Jonah in this book and I think he makes a much more dynamic character in this book than he was in Risked. Part of the reason I was so excited to read this book those years ago was the fact that I knew from the title that this was going to be the book where Jonah's historical identity was going to be, well, revealed. And, yeah, that does happen, but Jonah's historical identity is not a big part of himself. The main reason why there is growth in his character in this book is that he has to do almost everything in this book himself. He does not have Katherine or Chip. He does not have his parents. He has JB and Angela for a little bit, but he does most of the time fixing himself. It is very difficult for him and very frightening/stressful at times, but it really showed his courage and ingenuity.


IN CONCLUSION

Overall, there was a lot in this book and it's a lot to process. I'm not sure what happened at points. This seems like a great finale to a great series, but it's not the last book. There's another book. I'm curious what the next one is about because it seems like things are fixed, but I'm sure there's going to be some more trouble and I look forward to reading the actual finale to the series.



I hereby give this book

4 Stars!

Meaning: I really liked this book!

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Cover vs Cover: The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk

This week's pick is...

29736467VS.  The Beauty That Remains
Original                        Redesign
Full disclosure: I have not read this book so I have no idea how much these covers fit the book. I saw this redesign recently and it really caught my eye. I love the color scheme and I'm honestly here for all the illustrated covers lately. I love the art style and it tells me more about the book than the original. The original also catches my attention, because I love rainbows, but it tells me nothing about the book.
Final Verdict: Redesign
What do you think? Give me your thoughts on which cover is the best!

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

REVIEW: Honey, Baby, Sweetheart by Deb Caletti

Honey, Baby, Sweetheart

Right away I got that Something About To Happen feeling. Right away I knew he was bad, and that it didn't matter.

It is summer in the Northwest town of Nine Mile Falls, and sixteen-year-old Ruby McQueen, ordinarily dubbed The Quiet Girl, finds herself hanging out with gorgeous, rich, thrill-seeking Travis Becker. But Ruby is in over her head, and finds she is risking more and more when she's with him.

In an effort to keep Ruby occupied, Ruby's mother Ann drags Ruby to the weekly book club she runs. When it is discovered that one of the group''s own members is the subject of the tragic love story they are reading, Ann and Ruby spearhead a reunion between the long-ago lovers. But for Ruby, this mission turns out to be much more than just a road trip....






MY THOUGHTS
I picked this book up on a whim. It was a free read on Riveted and since I had yet to read a book by Deb Caletti, I decided to give it a read.

Honey, Baby, Sweetheart is about a teenage girl, Ruby McQueen's, summer. There are two main storylines. First, while walking home from work she passes the new Becker house and one day meets Travis Becker. This sets off a fast and spiraling relationship. She rides on his motorcycle, walks along train tracks, skips out on work, and jumps out the way of a car at the last second. Being with Travis is dangerous and Ruby knows this, but she wants to be around him. Until Travis asks her to do something that she regrets and hurts someone she cares for. The second storyline is after this event, when Ruby's mother drags Ruby to the Casserole Queens book club, a book club of old ladies (and Harold). When they find out that the book they are reading is connected to one of the Queen's lost loves, the book club turns into a kidnapping (from a senior home) and a road trip.

The writing in this book was wonderful. Every small detail was described and every character gets careful attention. I really loved the narration in this sense and it really made me feel like I was within the setting. The observations from Ruby as she tells us these small details did not feel at all like an interruption or unnecessary, they felt natural. They made me feel like I was really seeing these places through her eyes and hearing her tell me the story. That said, her narration did bother at some points when she would step aside and hint that there were darker things to come, they had no idea what was about to happen, etc. I'm not really a fan of narration that vaguely hints at what is to come in an unhelpful manner. I don't mind past tense, but there is no reason for these vague hints as they don't really do anything for the story.

As I mention in my run-down of the plot, there are two main storylines: The Travis Plot and the Book Club Plot. Unlike other books with multiple storylines, these did not weave very well with each other. The Travis Plot ended and then the Book Club Plot began, but we were still reading the same book. The Travis Plot focuses on Ruby as she starts up a relationship with a rich, bad boy. This did explore unhealthy relationships a little, along with first love, but it was very quick. We did not see very many in the moment interactions with Ruby and Travis, but we are told enough to know that he does not have respect for the rules and that he has no regards for Ruby's safety. This was fine because it showed that a "bad boy" isn't always who you want and you should not change yourself for that, but once we get into the Book Club Plot, Travis is barely mentioned. I will mention that the Travis Plot also had a lot of scenes involving Ruby's dad, who left her mother, but still comes home every once and a while and that her mother always remains hopeful that Ruby's dad will stay this time. There were moments in this that made me sad/upset for their family, but there was such a realness to how their family interactions were described. I do like how the family struggles and the Travis Plot went together. They were described similarly at points.

I liked the Book Club Plot the best out of the two storylines. After getting in trouble with Travis, Ruby's mom makes her join the Casserole Queens Book Club with her. I just liked the interactions between the Casserole Queens. The Casserole Queens find out that one of their newest members (who has just suffered a stroke) may have been romantically involved with a famous author they are reading a memoir from. They want to reunite them on a road trip and since I love road trips in books, I loved the inclusion of this, as well as the bookish moments. There are some oddly humorous moments in this part, but it is a bit bittersweet. There is a lot of healing with this part, with Ruby kind of dealing with what happened with Travis (not much though because he is barely mentioned), but also Ruby's mother healing from what happened with Ruby's father, and Ruby and her mother getting back on soild ground together. Of course, love is involved in this part to, but it was a sweeter love than what Ruby had with Travis and I liked how these two types of love were shown, with very different age groups. I also liked that there was not a major romantic focus for Ruby because it felt more realistic.

IN CONCLUSION
Overall, I did like this book. While the storylines felt a bit separate for me and some parts went by too quickly, I loved the writing in this book. I will likely be reading more from Deb Caletti in the future.

I hereby give this book
3.5 Stars
Meaning: I liked it, but it wasn't quite amazing.

Waiting on Wednesday: Five Dark Fates by Kendare Blake

Waiting on Wednesday (or Can't Wait Wednesday) is a weekly meme, hosted by Wishful Endings, where you talk about whatever book you are IMPATIENTLY WAITING for!

This week I am waiting for...
Five ​Dark Fates (Three Dark Crowns, #4)


After the battle with Katharine, the rebellion lies in tatters. Jules’s legion curse has been unbound, leaving her out of her mind and unfit to rule. Arsinoe must find a cure, even as the responsibility of stopping the ravaging mist rests heavy on her shoulders, and her shoulders alone. Mirabella has disappeared.

Queen Katharine’s rule over Fennbirn remains intact—for now. But her attack on the rebellion exacted a high price: her beloved Pietyr. Without him, who can she rely upon when Mirabella arrives, seemingly under a banner of truce? As oldest and youngest circle each other, and Katharine begins to yearn for the closeness that Mirabella and Arsinoe share, the dead queens hiss caution—Mirabella is not to be trusted.

In this conclusion to the Three Dark Crowns series, three dark sisters will rise to fight as the secrets of Fennbirn’s history are laid bare. Allegiances will shift. Bonds will be tested, and some broken forever.


The fate of the island lies in the hands of its queens.
Release Date: September 3rd, 2019



Why am I waiting?
I look forward to seeing how this series ends.
What book are you waiting for this week?

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Definitely More Than Ten Favorite Books Released In the Last Ten Years

Hosted each week by That Artsy Reader Girl, it's a meme for listing the top ten for everything bookish.
Today's topic is Favorite Books Released In the Last Ten Years. We're supposed to choose ONE book per year and to that I say HA! HA! HA! Only ONE book? Like that is going to happen! 
Needless to say, I went a bit overboard.


To keep me from going crazy, I will set some rules.
1. I'm not counting 2019 in this list because the year is not over yet and the amount of books I've read that have been published this year is very little compared to other years!
2. I'm not including any sequels.
3. No author will be listed more than once.
4. I'm not including books with over 100,000 ratings on Goodreads because I don't think I need to shout about those books. Likewise, I'm not mentioning any books from this recent Top Ten list.
5. I'm also including the number of books I've read that were published that year to prove HOW RIDICULOUS it is for me to choose JUST ONE BOOK!


Now, for some of these books, if I reread them I may not consider them favorites, but from what memory I have of reading them, they are favorites. This was super hard and by no means represents all of my favorite books published within the past ten years!


2009
(Number Read: 125)


2010
(Number Read: 158)


2011
(Number Read: 255)


2012
(Number Read: 357)


2013
(Number Read: 340)


(Apparently, this was a good year for books)


2014
(Number Read: 280)



2015
(Number Read: 213)


2016
(Number Read: 147)




2017
(Number Read: 115)




2018

(Number Read: 66)




What are some of your favorite books published in the last ten years?