Hello fellow readers! Time for my February Reads update:
I finished Unbelievable (Pretty Little Liars #4) by Sara Shepard on February 1st. The first lines: “Ever wish you could go back in time and undo your mistakes? If only you hadn’t drawn that clown face on the Bratz doll your best friend got you for her eight birthday, she wouldn’t have dropped you for the new girl from Boston.” Fourth in the Pretty Little Liars series…and I still read in practically one day! Background: there was once five best friends who did everything together – Ali, Emily, Spencer, Aria, and Hanna. That all changed the night Ali disappeared. Four years later, they all start to get messages from this person named “A,” who knows all of their secrets – and she doesn’t want to keep them! At first, the girls thought that “A” was Ali, but a few weeks later, Ali’s body was found. This book finally reveals who “A” is, as well as Ali’s murderer. It’s such a fun, quick read, filled with high school drama.
I finished Wither (Chemical Garden #1) by Lauren DeStefano in less than two days. For being a genre I don’t normally read (YA – Young Adult), I literally couldn’t put it down! It pushes a few boundaries…like child brides and polygamy…but I was sucked in so fast that I felt like I was there in the novel – and I so love when words and descriptions can transport you like that! The opening quote by T.S. Eliot, “This is the way the world ends not with a bang but a whimper,” is a very fitting start to this story of a dystopian future. The first paragraph is chilling and the author certainly has a way with words: “They keep us in the dark for so long that we lose sense of our eyelids.” Seventy years ago, scientists engineered super embryos that became favored over the old-fashioned method of having your own. This was done to help society as the population was decimated by cancer – but of course – there was a price to pay. The first generation of super embryos were fine, but all of their offspring have a life expectancy of 20 (females) to 25 (males). I liked how the characters and situations in this story were not simply good or bad, but various shades of grey; it made it interesting to see how inner morals can bend or break when survival is at stake.
I then read Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin. The first line: “Whenever I hear of someone else’s tragedy, I do not dwell on the accident or diagnosis, or even the initial shock waves or aftermath of grief. Instead, I find myself reconstructing those final ordinary moments.” Ugh…I had such high hopes for this book being all lovey-dovey like Giffin’s other books; however, this book didn’t turn out to be about love at all – well, at least it wasn’t right at the front burner. The novel turned out to be about forgiveness and forgiving (just to forgive), not holding grudges, showing grace and courage when the time calls for it. So many questions are brought up and the book turns out to be more serious than I had expected – but it was gut wrenching, and just left me feeling…sad.
I finished The Iron King (Iron Fey #1) by Julie Kagawa in just two days. The first line: “Ten years ago, on my sixth birthday, my father disappeared.” Like Wither, this was another book that I just couldn’t put down – another YA series in which I was totally enthralled from page one. I loved how the book weaved together familiar and popular elements to make something fresh and remarkable: Alice in Wonderland, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Peter Pan, and faerie folklore. Many books share the same mythology, the Summer Court and Winter Court, references to other literature, but Kagawa totally makes it her own thing by creating this strangely unique world which makes you want to keep reading.
How do you know if love is real or just an illusion?
Here is a look at what’s sitting at the top of my To Be Read (TBR) list:
Thanks for taking a peek onto my bookshelf! Do you have any “MUST READ” recommendations?