Raindropreflections: May 2011

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Review- jesus freakz + buddha punx by M.E. Purfield

Summary (goodreads):

Meet Patty Gee – Pentecostal teen living with her grandmother and widowed father. Patty finds happiness in her religion that keeps her close to her father, her recently deceased mother, and God. Her perspective is clear. It has to be if she’s going to survive freshman year in a new urban school.     After violent incident that leaves her beaten, she meets Miggy Perez – Dominican Buddhist punk who takes pictures off dog poop on the sidewalk. Yes, Miggy is weird. But Patty feels God sent Miggy to her for a reason. Plus, she’s one of the first people in school who doesn’t call her a Jesus Freak.     Patty’s father doesn’t approve of Miggy. He believes she was sent by the Devil. He may be right. Especially when Patty feels her life spinning out of control. Then something happens that truly blows her world apart. Miggy was not sent by God or the Devil – but from someone unexpected.


What I Expected: the summary was pretty intriguing, but I still wasn’t expecting too much. Well, let me tell you, this book exceeded my expectations more than anything I’ve ever read before. I guess I shouldn’t have been neutral, then =P Thanks to M.E. Purfield for giving me a copy to review- you can buy his book on Amazon.

My Thoughts

jesus freakz + buddha punx is a novel about self-discovery, acceptance, and most of all, about friendship. I loved all the beautiful messages in the book, and, well, WOW.

Yes, this book is basically about religion and how to see things in different ways. The MC Patty is totally hung up on her Christian values- to the point that she’s always wondering if people are Saved. I was pretty surprised at how religious people CAN be- I’ve occasionally come across the overly religious person, but nothing like this.

Characters

The MC Patty- she was totally unlike any character I’d ever read about, and I guess that was pretty much a good thing- I got to read about a completely different person. I loved how she didn’t really care about what people said, but her “I can Save you” things at the end kind of freaked me out. But she was still a great MC, and one I’ll definitely remember in the future.

Miggie- she was awesome through and through. I wish I had a best friend like her- one who isn’t afraid to speak her mind and yet accepts you for who you are. And Tommy- I loved him in the beginning. That’s all I’m saying.

Patty’s grandma was pretty awesome, too, and her dad- he freaked me out as well, but he was presented in this I’m-not-going-to-lie way that made it easier to deal with who he was.

Parting Thoughts: In short, this book was awesome, full of surprises and smiles and lots of life lessons. This is definitely one to read if you want a different kind of story that deviates from the current trends in the YA book world.

Rating: 4.5/5. I really, really liked this book. Hurray for book blogging, because I’d never have read awesome, different books like this one if I hadn’t started a blog.

You can visit M.E. Purfield’s blog here.

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Review – Clarity by Kim Harrington

Summary (book jacket): clarity

Clarity “Clare” Fern sees things. Things no one else can see. Things like stolen kisses and long-buried secrets. All she has to do is touch a certain object, and the visions come to her. It’s a gift.

And a curse.

When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare’s ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case- but Clare is still furious at the cheating jerk. Then Clare’s brother, who has supernatural gifts of his own, becomes the prime suspect, and Clare can no longer look away. Teaming up with Gabriel, the smoldering son of the new detective, Clare must venture into the depths of fear, revenge, and lust in order to track the killer. But will her sight fail her just when she needs it most?

What I expected: I loved the cover, and the prospect of a story with psychics, which is an under-explored aspect in most YA novels, was enough to make me order it ASAP at the library.

Story

Like I said above, the psychic aspect of Clarity appealed to me, although I’ve never actually had my palm read or whatever. And a murder mystery on top of that? Awesome.

The murder mystery was actually really, really good. I was misled until the very end, but it disappointed me a little that I figured out who the murderer was a little before Clare did, although obviously I didn’t know the motive behind the murder until it was explained. And that motive was simultaneously disgusting and ingenious.

Characters

I liked the MC Clare a lot. She was unpredictable- you’d never know what she’d do, especially when it came to the two guys vying for her affections. Speaking of the two guys…

I liked Justin (the ex-boyfriend) more than the detective’s son Gabriel, even though what Justin did was unforgivable and all that. It’s just that Justin seemed a lot truer to Clare than Gabriel ever would. Justin  was the good boy; Gabriel was the bad boy. They were both hot, obviously. But yeah, despite his being a lying jerk, I like Justin better.

I am TIRED of love triangles, people. It’s in so many novels- Mortal Instruments, Clockwork Angel, Twilight, Paranormalcy, etc- so naturally I was expecting to hate this aspect of Clarity. But in reality (maybe because this is a contemporary novel and therefore normal people liking normal people) this particular love triangle wasn’t all that bad. I even took sides.

Lastly, Perry, Clare’s brother- I know he’s a total player and everything, but I couldn’t bring myself to hate him. He just seemed like such a sweet (and cute) person… I guess that’s his charm, huh?

Parting Thoughts: I loved the cover, I loved the title, and overall I loved Clarity. It was a great book. I really liked it, and I recommend it to fans of contemporary fiction who don’t mind a little psychic touch to it. Go, Kim Harrington! And there are hints of a sequel… lots of unanswered questions at the end. I’m looking forward to reading more from Kim Harrington for sure. And her acknowledgements just make you glow inside because you’re a book blogger.

Rating: 4.5/5. The only major detractor was my finding out the murderer a while before Clare did. Still, I really liked Clarity.

Buy at: Amazon

Friday, 27 May 2011

The Friday Memes (4)

Book Blogger Hop

The Book Blogger Hop is a meme hosted by Crazy for Books 🙂

This week’s question: What book-to-movie adaption have you most liked?  Which have you disliked?

Hmm. I did like the Harry Potter movies up to #2, and after that was when they started deviating from the plot and leaving important things like the Quidditch match in The Goblet of Fire out. That kind of frustrated me. So yeah, I both like and dislike the movie version of HP.

Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee.

This week’s question: How many books do you read in a week? And in what format do you read them, or listen to them?

When I don’t have school (like, during spring break or summer) I read a book a day because I have so much free time and I’m a pretty fast reader. During school, however… sadly, I read about two to three books a week if I’m lucky. I usually read actual, physical copies of books, since I don’t have an e-reader, but I have to read the occassional book on my laptop, which isn’t exactly the most comfortable kind of reading.

Have a great weekend!

Friday's Finest (9)

Friday’s Finest is a meme hosted by Justine at A Bookful of Thoughts.

Rules:
~Post a quote that really stuck to  you after reading it in a book.
~Make sure it isn’t a spoiler!
~If you’d  like, expand on what you think it means and why you chose it.

This week’s quote is from Where She Went by Gayle Forman.

“Everyone loves New York City for all these different reasons. The culture. The mix of people. The pace. The food. But for me, it’s kind of one epic Easter egg hunt. You’re always finding these little surprises around every corner. Like that that garden. Like a bowling alley in a giant bus depot.”

That just makes me love New York City (or heck, the whole state) more. I’ve LOVED New York since forever and I don’t even know why.

Have a great weeked!

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (3)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

This week I’m waiting on an awesome-sounding book called Bestest. Ramadan. Ever. by Medeia Sharif, which is releasing on July 8th, 2011.

Summary (goodreads):

During Ramadan, we’re not allowed to eat from sunrise to sunset, for a whole month. My family does this every year, even though I’ve been to a mosque exactly twice in my fifteen years. My exercise-obsessed mom—whose hotness skipped a generation, sadly—says I could stand to lose a few. But is torture really an acceptable method? I think not.

Things wouldn’t be so bad if I had a boyfriend, but my oppressive parents forbid me to date. This is just cruel and wrong. Especially since Peter, a cute and crushable artist, might be my soul mate. Figures my bestest friend Lisa likes him, too.

To top it off, there’s a new Muslim girl in school who struts around in super-short skirts, commanding every boy’s attention—including Peter’s. How can I get him to notice me? And will I ever feel like a typical American girl?

ZOMG it sounds just like my kind of book- immigrant experience, the whole “will I ever be a NORMAL American” (or in my case, Canadian), and would you believe- I had an amazing best friend named Lisa too!

I think I sound a little too excited, but it’s been a long time since there’ve been recent books on the immigrant experience or even books with diverse- or multicultural (?)- MCs, so I’m hoping this book’s another Kira-Kira (by Cynthia Kadohata) or Does My Head Look Big in This? (by Randa-Abdel Fattah).

The only thing better than reading a book is reading a book about someone you can relate to. So yeah, I am SO looking forward to this book.

PS: if the summary happens to freak you out a little (torture, oppressive parents, and all) let me tell you, this is one of those overdramatic girls I’m real familiar with, and I think the summary is meant to be funny, because I get the joke from one paragraph to another. So, well, this book is NOT about anything dark and heavy- I can tell because I have amazing superpowers- I always know about immigrant stuff 😉

What books are you guys looking forward to?

 

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

A Note…

I’ve only been posting reviews lately, and it’s because a) I have this horde of reviews waiting to gte out there into the world anyway, and b) I’m super-duper busy, what with math tests and socials projects and overall, SCHOOL. I won’t be participating in the majority of the memes I usually do, but I will try to do Friday’s Finest and Waiting on Wednesday whenever I can.

School is sucking the life out of me, honestly. On top of all that, I’m on a reading diet- I won’t be reading anything until school’s over and my exams are finished. I SO need to concentrate now that there are only, what, three weeks of school left. Can’t wait till summer!

I’m SO going to be back as soon as summer begins. Till then- it’s mostly going to be reviews on this blog 😐

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Review- Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Book One of The Infernal Devices

Summary (book jacket): Clockwork Angel

When sixteen-year old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks, and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, who are members of a secret organization called the Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What’s more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa’s power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by- and torn between- two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm’s length… everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world… and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

What I Expected: I expected Clockwork Angel to be phenomenal, seeing as Cassandra Clare is basically the JK Rowling of YA lit. I’ve heard so much great stuff about the Mortal Instruments series as well. It lived up to that expectation and so much more.
Story

It was truly amazing. The plot was so intricate, there were so many shocks I didn’t see coming, and I was completely misled about the badness of a certain character, and no, it wasn’t anything to do with Will.

It was a mistake on my part to read Clockwork Angel before reading Cassandra Clare’s other series- I feel like I’m totally missing out on something important, even though this is a prequel and there isn’t supposed to be anything to know beforehand, but imagine if there was a Harry Potter prequel- you’d appreciate it all the more if you read the series itself.

So, well, I’ll certainly be reading the Mortal Instruments series ASAP.

It’s obvious that Cassandra Clare’s influenced by classics, some of which I love (Charles Dickens, woo-hoo!) and others that I plan on reading. No wonder C.C’s writing (about the initials- I’m kind of tired of writing her name so many times) is so sophisticated and has a decidedly British feel to it, even though the MC is American. And I loved it.

Characters

The characters were so well-defined and multi-faceted and real and vulnerable that I grew to admire C.C’s one-of-a-kind talent. Wow. Tessa was every bit the Boadicea Will described. I truly admired her courage.

I’m tired of vampires and werewolves and all that paranormal jazz by now- they were never my thing. But the vampires in C.C’s book were very much to my taste. They were so very realistic and yet had that element of otherworldliness that made them different from other vampires that I loved the two most prominent vampire characters in the book- Camille Belcourt and de Quincy. They seem more like the original Dracula, whom I’m sure C.C has read about- than any other paranormal book I’ve read.

Now, moving on to the guys. Of course there’s a love triangle- no paranormal book would be complete without one. I must say that out of our two male leads, Jem and Will, I very much preferred Jem. I can’t exactly say why- he’s sweet and smart and (a bit too?) philosophical and seems exactly like the perfect guy without coming off as a way-too-good-to-be-true kind of character.

I didn’t like Will’s nature. I mean, sure, he’s got secrets and all, but so has Jem, and he doesn’t act that way. I just took a dislike to the beautiful bad angel, and it’s his stinging wit and careless manner that did that.

But that’s the best part about it- I get to be on Team Jem, if they have such a thing. In Twilight I always cheered for Team Edward because I liked Jacob too much to let Bella have him (in the movies- Taylor Lautner!) but this time it’s different.

Oh, and Jem has the same name as one of my favourite literary characters from To Kill a Mockingbird. That might’ve had a little bit to do with my favouritism…

Parting Thoughts: I should’ve read the Mortal Instruments BEFORE I read this book! Waaah! But my friend Preet loaned me her TMI series, and I’m glad about that, because I seriously felt like I was missing out on a huge series.

Rating: 4.5/5. Reading this book was a little confusing for me, seeing as I didn’t even read the series. That really isn’t a reflection of how good the book is- its language is beautiful enough to make it a classic- it’s just that I had trouble understanding it, and it was all my fault.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

My First IMM!

I decided to do In My Mailbox this weekend. IMM is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren, inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie.

This week in books is particularly good- I got a bunch of books I was really looking forward to 🙂

 

Like Mandarin by Kirsten Hubbard- SO looking forward to this!

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson- beautiful.

The Education of Bet by Lauren Baratz-Logsted

The Iron Witch by Karen Mahoney

Divergent by Veronica Roth- this was amazing.

Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins- book love!

Libraries rock! I’ve read a couple of the books I got this week, and I’m so looking forward to reading more! What did you guys get this week?

 

Friday, 13 May 2011

Review- Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Summary (book jacket):

Romance was not part of Nora Grey’s plan. She’s never been particularly attracted to the boys at school, no matter how hard her best friend, Vee, tries to push them at her. Not until Patch comes along. With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Patch draws Nora to him against her better judgement.

But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora’s not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is and seems to know more about her than her closest friends. She can’t decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.

For she is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those who have fallen- and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong side will cost Nora her life.

What I expected: I had no clear idea what Hush Hush was about, but judging from the cover, something to do with angels…? I hadn’t read any reviews either, so I was willing to go either way with this book.

Story

The beginning was interesting enough, once I was willing to overlook the eye-rolling amount of similarity to Twilight– dangerous guy comes along (in science class, too), girl is attracted to him, but doesn’t know if she should be attracted or not. Well, like I said, the beginning was pretty good, and my expectations rose.

The middle, though, where Nora grows indecisive and doesn’t know what to do about Patch besides find out about his past, was slow. I didn’t get where the story was going. I liked the suspenseful end, though. It made up for the slight monotony of the middle part.

What I wish is that the aspects of angel folklore and Nephilim and all that were expanded upon more. I’d have liked to know more about that; there aren’t too many YA books on angels. But there was only the bare minimum when it came to angels and their kind, so that was kind of disappointing.

Characters

After reading the I-like-the-bad-guy-but-I-shouldn’t summary, I was prepared for Nora to be another Bella type of character, but surprisingly, she wasn’t. She was actually a strong, mostly smart MC that I came to admire, especially at the end.

Vee, Nora’s best friend, put this entertaining twist in the book, especially when she was under sedatives. You’ll smile when you read that part- it’s actually kind of funny.

The male lead, Patch, wasn’t too interesting to me. I mean, Patch sounds like a playful name, the kind a bright, funny guy would have, but the Patch in this book was like, well, a dark, dangerous kind of guy.

There weren’t too many extra characters in the book, which was both good and somewhat bad, since that meant there wouldn’t be too many subplots. There were Eliot and Jules- they were a surprising pair, though somewhat predictable.

Parting Thoughts: Hush Hush didn’t turn out to be my kind of book- I’m more of the dystopian/contemporary type- but that doesn’t stop me from trying every genre. So I think fans of angel lore will really like this book. It had a great MC, a nice end (NOT a spoiler; I mean that it was an exciting end) and I finished it in two sittings.

Rating: 3.5/5. Not because it’s a bad book or anything; it’s just that I wish the angel thing was expanded upon a little further. Other than that, this is probably one of those unique books you shouldn’t miss. I’ll be reading Crescendo, the sequel, for SURE.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Review- Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green & David Levithan

Summary (book jacket):Will Grayson, Will Grayson

It’s not that far from Evanston from Naperville, but Chicago suburbanites Will Grayson and Will Grayson may well be on different planets. When fate delivers them both to the same surprising crossroads, the Will Graysons find their lives overlapping and hurtling in new and unexpected directions. With a push from friends new and old- including the massive, and massively fabulous Tiny Cooper, offensive lineman and musical theatre auteur extraordinaire- Will and Will begin building respective romantic turns-of-heart and the epic production of history’s most awesome high school musical.

***

What I Expected: well, everyone was raving over this one, so yes, I expected total and complete awesomeness. I also heard that people loved Tiny Cooper, so I was looking forward to reading about him.

Story
I loved the idea of two people named alike meeting each other and finding a common thread that’d keep them connected to each other. And the common thread being Tiny Cooper was a stroke of genius. The dual narration was what really kept the story going, and each Will Grayson’s path to happiness (or at least good relationships) was so different, and yet I found myself rooting for both of them.

Characters
I liked the straight Will Grayson, simply because he wasn’t as depressed. But the other Will Grayson wasn’t actually depressing enough to make me shut the book; his internal struggle was told in a way that didn’t make the reader depressed, but just gave a very deep insight into depression.
Okay, I just used the word ‘depressed’ (or a variation) four times in two sentences. See, that’s why I should always keep a thesaurus handy. But I’m too lazy and my computer seems to run out of synonyms right when I need them. Seriously, right now it says (no suggestions) when I right-click ‘depressed’.

Tiny Cooper wasn’t AS fabulous as I expected him to be. Maybe it’s because I’ve had a friend who was so absorbed in herself she wouldn’t ever realize I was tired of her talking. But Tiny Cooper was pretty funny and awesome overall. Just not as much as I was expecting. Blame that on over-hyping.

Parting Thoughts: all in all, this book wasn’t as depressing as I thought it’d be, and the other Will Grayson’s gayness was captured in a way that made it believable and not over-the-top or way too underground. I liked it quite a lot. And oh my gosh, Jane has the same grade point average as me (3.7)! I laughed out loud at that.

Rating: 4/5. A very, very good book that opens your eyes toward another aspect of love- that love is truth and without love/truth, there is no truth/love. Oh, and the acknowledgements were really sweet and funny, too.

Friday, 6 May 2011

Follow Friday/Book Blog Hop (4)

Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee =)

Q. Circle time! Time to share. What character in a book would you most like to be, what character in a book would you most like to date?

A. Ooh, that’s a TOUGH question. I’d love to be Shay from Uglies by Scott Westerfield, because hey, complete makeover that makes you extremely beautiful? I’M IN. But really, Shay is one of my favourite characters in YA fiction and I admire her bad-girl attitude and stinging wit.

I know for sure that I’d LOVE to date Bilal from a favourite book of mine, Ten Things I Hate about Me by Randa Abdel-Fattah. Aside from being a player (and entirely fictional, of course) I SWOON over him everytime I read Ten Things I Hate about Me. You guys should read that book if you haven’t already and see his awesomeness for yourself :P

Book Blogger HopThe Book Blog Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Crazy for Books, and it’s an awesome way to meet other bloggers!

This week’s question is: Which book blogger would you most like to meet in real life?

A. I’d like to meet them all! But I’d probably want to meet Justine from A Bookful of Thoughts, since she’s the first book blogger I’ve ever, uh, “met”, and she’s been really nice and helpful as well as giving me a welcome on her blog =)

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Review- Matched by Ally Condie

Summary

In the Society, Officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die. Cassia has always trusted their choices. It’s hardly any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he’s the one… until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path no one else has ever dared follow- between perfection and passion.

Matched is a story for right now and storytelling with the resonance of a classic.

What I Expected: The cover was so beautiful I really wanted to read the book. But I heard many mixed reviews for Matched, so I was unsure of what exactly I’d get from this book- disappointment or book love?

Story

Matched is a dystopian novel, so I was looking forward to reading it no matter what the reviews- I’m a huge fan of dystopian books. But there was no explanation for why Cassia’s society became that way, why it regulated everything from food portion sizes to the people you married. That was was kind of the one major detractor- how did society evolve to that outcome?

As for the part about being Matched with someone and not being able to choose- I come from a culture/country where that was/mostly is the norm, so it wasn’t like, ‘Oh my G, that’s so cruel!’ for me. I don’t think that’s right, though, because even today some people’s parents choose their kids’ spouses and even the job they’ll have, convincing them that parents know best. If that aspect was supposed to be a shocker for me, it wasn’t, but that was because of my background. But I know for sure it’ll shock others.

Characters

I couldn’t bring myself to care for Cassia, and I think that was the problem with the novel. Her personality and her reasons for doing things, were too slippery for me to be able to hold on to the story and care for her. She seemed flat and even a little monotone.

The male leads Xander and Ky were marginally better. I was angry at Cassia for liking Ky instead of her Match Xander, because she totally ignored him and she was basically cheating on Xander, who, by the way, was a really sweet guy and one of the plus points of Matched. I also didn’t like that Cassia somehow justified cheating on Xander by telling him the truth about her and Ky- it’s not enough to tell the truth. At least, that’s what I think, even though I don’t know what would be a better thing to do.

In this love triangle, I prefer Xander for sure.

Parting Thoughts: I honestly didn’t know what to make of this book. On one hand, I couldn’t stop thinking about the book whenever I had to put it down, but on the other hand, I couldn’t like Cassia or care for her or even support her actions, especially the ones to do with Xander. I didn’t know how to get down to writing this review- this is one book that’s stumped me. Do I like it or do I not?

And I think that a some of the disappointment across the book blogosphere at this book was because of all the over-hype and very positive blurbs on the book. It made you expect so much, and when it wasn’t actually the ‘resonance of a classic’ for some, obviously you’d be disappointed.

Rating: 3.5/5. I recommend that you take this book out from the library because it definitely should be read- it has a strong message and if it suits you, I think Matched may turn out to be a favourite book of yours. Unfortunately, Matched didn’t work for me, but it probably will work for a lot more of you.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Review- Forever Mine by Elizabeth Reyes

Summary (goodreads):

Seventeen-year old Sarah’s life is turned upside down when her single mom is sent to jail. She’s forced to move, leaving behind everything she’s ever known, including her best friend Sydney. Lost and bitter in a new school, her one goal is to save money and move back home. Then she meets Angel Moreno.

Enigmatic but gorgeous, Angel is almost too good to be true. Except for one thing, his archaic belief that guys and girls can never be “just friends”. The problem? Sarah’s best friend Sydney is not a girl.

With their unexpected romance intensifying to places neither ever experienced, how long can Sarah keep Angel in the dark? And how will he react when the truth finally comes out?

Note: I received this e-book for review from the author; it’s an e-book and can be purchased on Amazon for Kindle.

My Thoughts

I was pretty happy when I received this book for review; I generally like romances. Forever Mine was all about first love and possessiveness and how much the truth really does matter.

First of all, reading a book on your computer is the most uncomfortable experience I’ve ever had. I am NEVER going to hunch over my desk squinting at my laptop or sitting on the floor with my laptop on the coffee table because no matter what, laptops just aren’t meant for reading for a long amount of time.

Now, back to the book. This is what happens: your mom’s in jail. You aren’t allowed to stay with your best friend, but instead with your aunt all the way in California. You meet a hot guy who’s into you, too, and you both fall in love and all that jazz. BUT you never told your boyfriend about your best friend back in Arizona who, might I add, is a guy. And your boyfriend’s ultra possessive. Conflict, conflict, conflict.
I have to admit, I haven’t ever read a book centered almost completely on a romance. This book was all about love- the MC Sarah and the male lead Angel’s love, their friends’ love, etcetera. It was a bit gruelling at first, because I’m a sucker for the imperfect kind of love stories that are more of a side plot than anything, like Harry and Ginny in Harry Potter.

The thing is, this particular romance seemed a little too lust-based. Sure, there were sweet moments, and Sarah and Angel really seemed to click, but at the same time, I was annoyed sometimes about how much of a horndog Angel was. Did it take away from the story? I think it depends on your individual definition of what love and lust are, and also whether they’re separate from each other for you or not. Other than that, I think Angel and Sarah’s romance was very sweet.

Characters

The MC Sarah seemed a little insipid to me about the whole coach-is-nice-but-dangerous thing. Either she was blind, or that coach was extremely convincing. But damn, can anyone be that naive? I’m the ultra-perceptive kind of person, so I really don’t know. Other than that, she was very believable, albeit a little too emotional. But this is about a girl whose mom’s in jail and whose boyfriend is ultra possessive.

Oh, about the possessiveness. I have nothing against the male lead Angel (even though I object to such an obviously masculine guy having such a girly name) but he seemed way too jealous and possessive. But that’s his character, so yeah. Other than that, DAMN! He was a great male lead for sure.

I LOVED LOVED LOVED Sydney. He was the kind of best friend I wish I always had. For a while I thought that a) he was in love with Sarah himself but when he didn’t seem to care that Sarah was with Angel, that b) he was gay. It turns out to be that neither one is true- and that is NOT a spoiler.

Parting Thoughts: This is my first time reading anything by an indie author, and it was certainly a different experience. I liked Forever Mine because it carried that forever-love thing, and that’s one of the sweetest things in the world, honestly. The cliffhangers were great, by the way. Elizabeth Reyes really knows how to write cliffhangers.

Rating: 3.5/5. The lust-based relationship between Sarah and Angel irked me. Maybe it’s because we’re just not as forward up here in Canada or something, but yeah. I’m sure others out there who disagree with me, though, and I’m also sure things might work differently with different people. So yeah, that’s my opinion. Fans of everlasting, forever-yours kind of love, this book is made for you!
Oh, and I’m looking forward to the sequel, Always Been Mine, which is about Angel’s older brother Alex. I liked that guy, even though he was a bigger player than even Angel was (before meeting Sarah, mind).

Another Note: I just want to say that I’m supportive of all the indie authors out there. It must be a big step to be able to have enough faith in your book to publish it yourself on Amazon or even in print. So keep doing the work you do, and may you all be the next Amanda Hocking!

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