Monday, 27 July 2015

Mini Reviews: Some Pleasant Surprises

I've been reading a lot of books lately since I only started school yesterday and had a lot of free time to in the holidays. But my reviewing just has gotten away from me, and I haven't been keeping up to date like I should have been so I have some short reviews below, just to let you know my thoughts on the books I've been reading recently. 


17571215Things We Know By Heart
by Jessi Kirby

After Quinn Sullivan loses her boyfriend, Trent, in an accident during their junior year, she reaches out to the recipients of his donated organs in hopes of picking up the pieces of her now-unrecognizable life. She hears back from the some of them, but the person who received Trent's heart has remained silent. The essence of a person, she has always believed, is in the heart. If she finds Trent's, then maybe she can have peace once and for all. 

Risking everything in order to finally lay her memories to rest, Quinn goes outside the system to track down nineteen-year-old Colton Thomas - a guy whose life has forever changed by this priceless gift. But what start as an accidental ruin-in quickly develops into more, sparkling an undeniable attraction. She doesn't want to give in it to it - especially since he has no idea how they're connected - but their time together has made feel Quinn feel alive again. No matter how hard she's falling for Colton, each beat of his heart reminds her of all she's lost... and all that remains at stake. 

Story: The weakest point of the book honestly. It was a little too much like Love, Lucas at times for my liking - it had a girl with depression because of the tragic loss of a loved one who finds comfort (and eventually heals herself) because of a cute surfie teaching her to surf/kayak. Not the most original storyline. 

Characters: Okay but I don't think they are going to be particualrly memorable, especially Colton (though I love that name). He was kind of just there at times and I wouldn't call our protagonist exciting either. Both of them were just too plain to stick out for me.

The writing: a masterpiece of the most gentlest prose, comparable to the brilliant Amy Zhang's Falling Into Place. The story was a little sad, but somehow the writing weaved a story that left you smiling and begging for more - in between the sobbing sessions, naturally. It was sweet and simple, but heart-wrenching and gorgeous at the same time. An absolute masterpiece. 

See full review here


17878931Red Queen (Red Queen #1)
by Victoria Aveyard

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors god-like powers. To Mare Barrows, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change. 

Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possess a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control. But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win? 

Plot: I can understand why a lot of people were upset about this book - the similarities between The Hunger Games (the romance and dystopian elements) and Bitterblue (political situation and fantastical elements) were a little too uncanny at times but it didn't bother me as much as I thought it would. 

The plot didn't wow me though. I don't want to spoil anything, but there were many, many elements of the plot that were plan old ridiculous. I couldn't get aboard with the rebellion - there plans were plain old silly and I just found it lame. 

The writing: wasn't actually too bad. In fact, there were many parts that were downright gorgeous and I highlighted more quotes than I would have expected. 

Characters: All of the characters were a little too generic for me. I did like Cal though. 

Romance: The romance itself was a little cliched. We have a love triangle though so I hardly expected it to be mind-blowing. What worked about it however, was Mare's reaction to it. She didn't get gushy or mushy or air-headed over the fact that she had members of royalty - Silvers even - that cared for her. She took it all underwing and handled it, I believe, in a realistic way. She didn't string anyone along or keep massive secrets. The love interest themselves were also different enough to warrant being two different love interests but not too opposite so that they whole trope with the 'one bad guy and one good guy' became an issue. Thank God! It wasn't fantastic but it could have been a lot worse. 

See full review here


24789575Fairest: Levana's Story (Lunar Chronicles #3.5)
by Marissa Meyer

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her "glamour" to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet and Cress, Levana lived a very different story - a story that has never been told... until now. 

Goodreads | Amazon

Woah. I wasn't expecting that at all. This series hasn't done much for me so far to be honest. It seems I'm practically the only person that opinion, but I just don't like the series that much. But this, this was incredibly well written. And so disturbing. How did Marissa Meyer manage it!? She went from writing the sweet but rather simple-minded narrative of Cinder to this incredibly complex novel that explores Levana - a girl whose is completely twisted. I'm speechless, awed. I certainly will be devouring Winter once it is released. 


Have you read either of these books? What were your thoughts on them? 

Let me know you thoughts in the comments below!


  1. I've heard such good things about Red Queen, but haven't managed to read it yet. Nice reviews! :)

    1. Thanks Nicole! :) I hope you enjoy Red Queen - it seems like a bit of a hit-or-miss type of book.

  2. I wasn't the biggest fan of Red Queen either, I mean it was just so similar to others and there was a severe lack of world building in that one - with a heavy focus on the love triangle.

    YES I LOVED FAIREST so much. I mean how dark and disturbing was it, it was so awesome!

    Things we Know by Heart I haven't read, but it sounds kind of bland and generic. .The only thing that interests me is the writing.

    1. Exactly! It seemed to take elements from a lot of popular books and just smash them all together, hoping we wouldn't notice that - or the lack of world-building. Add that too love triangle fail and it just doesn't work...

      Yes, yes, YES! I didn't expected it at ALL!

      I wouldn't really push Things We Know By Heart at you because, yeah, it was generic and kind of bland... The writing was the best thing by far, and if it was even possible just to enjoy that without the rest of the book I'd be like YES but otherwise I wouldn't recommend it.

  3. This is why I am such a fan of Marissa Meyer - in Cress, she totally made us fall in love with the sweet innocence of Cress, and then here she goes with Fairest which is quite possibly one of the most disturbing I've read in YA O_O Like seriously, it made me want to take a shower!

    Faye at The Social Potato

    1. Her ability to change writing styles like it certainly applaud worthy! It was INCREDIBLE how she made me feel sorry for such a terribly evil-to-the-core person like Levana! It kind of scared me to be honest...

    2. Things We Know by heart is actually a book I have but just haven't read yet. But it seems like it is one I should get to! Red Queen is one I have on my TBR. Oh, and I read and loved Fairest. It wasn't as good as the rest of the series but it was interesting to see Levana's past. I wonder what made her sister so mean in particular though. No reasoning is given for that :/

    3. Things(..) is a hit or miss type of book I think. Same with Red Queen. Your going to love it or hate it. Oh, I LOVED Fairest sooo much more than the rest of the series but that's just my opinion. I know a lot of peeps love that series. Hmmm, I don't know. I think she's just plain old crazy.... :)