When We Wonder by Fatima AlSuwaidi {Book Review}

I received this book from Fatima AlSuwaidi in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinions.

32990166When We Wonder is a journey through love and pain, hurt and healing. This collection of poetry and prose explore the different aspects of self-struggle and self-discovery, and all the things that make us wonder.

When I was emailed by Fatima asking if I would review When We Wonder, I was immediately interested. After reading other collections like The Princess Saves Herself in This OneLove, and YouMilk and Honey, and We Carry The Sky, I became interested in reading other poetry collections. Especially because Fatima AlSuwaidi is self-published and a diverse author! What I didn’t know is that When We Wonder would soon become one of my favorite poetry collections.

Read More »

Advertisements

The Girl with the Red Balloon by Katherine Locke {ARC Review}

I received The Girl with the Red Balloon from edelweiss in exchange of an honest review. This in no way influences my opinions. 

34448522.jpgWhen sixteen-year-old Ellie Baum accidentally time-travels via red balloon to 1988 East Berlin, she’s caught up in a conspiracy of history and magic. She meets members of an underground guild in East Berlin who use balloons and magic to help people escape over the Wall—but even to the balloon makers, Ellie’s time travel is a mystery. When it becomes clear that someone is using dark magic to change history, Ellie must risk everything—including her only way home—to stop the process. 

After following Katherine Locke on Twitter for quite a while, I was pretty excited to read The Girl with the Red Balloon. I’d just like to say now that this book definitely did not disappoint.

All of the characters were so wonderful. Although the book mainly follows Ellie, we also do get multiple P.O.V.s. Multiple P.O.V.s are generally something I shy away from, but I ended up really loving it in this book. It helped make the magic behind the red balloons a bit easier to understand.

With that being said, I did feel that at some points it was still pretty difficult to understand. I really didn’t understand the magic behind the balloons until 30% into the book. The book is ‘magical realism’ which makes some details pretty difficult to comprehend. After I grasped it all, I really enjoyed it! It was just trying to make it through the confusion.

The Girl with the Red Balloon is definitely not a light-hearted read. It deals with heavy-but relevant-topics such as antisemitism, Holocaust, racism, war, etc. If you are triggered/upset by any of those things, people take precaution before reading Girl with the Red Balloon. 

What everyone is probably wondering: are there diverse characters in this book? YES. And I love them all dearly. Kai (arguably the love interest) is a Romanian boy from England. Ellie (our beloved main character) is a Jewish American. Mitzi is a German Lesbian. Basically, there’s representation across the board and it’s WONDERFUL.

Overall, I really liked The Girl with the Red Balloon. It surely wasn’t perfect, but it was still an enjoyable read. I really hope you decided to pre-order/pick it up on Sept. 1!

So, what do I rate The Girl with the Red Balloon?

★★★★/5 STARS

Have you read or pre-ordered The Girl with the Red Balloon yet? What did you think of it? Are you normally a fan of magical realism? 

liv.jpg

 

They Both Die At The End by Adam Silvera {ARC Review}

I was sent a physical Advanced Reader’s Copy through Kristina Boling through Twitter. This in no way influences my opinion.

33385229

On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today. Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure and to live a lifetime in a single day.

I think I may have said this in every review I’ve done, but They Both Die At The End may be one of my favorite books of 2017. If you have yet to read an Adam Silvera novel, it’s better late than never. He’s an author that you need to have on your ‘auto-buy authors’ list immediately. One thing about Adam Silvera novels is that they are inexplicably sad; They Both Die At The End was no different.

When you pick up They Both Die At The End (notice I say When and not If), prepare a special box of tissues. You’ll be doing quite a lot of crying. You probably already assumed that from the title of it, though. In my opinion, this book was probably the most heart-shattering out of all Silvera novels.

This book really hit close to home for me. Silvera opens the book with a small message about how his books are very personal to him. He wrote that They Both Die At The End was more about the opportunities he’s missed versus an actual experience. I really needed to read this. I may have talked about this briefly, but I will be at a new high school this year. I’m really anxious around new people. TBDATE really made me realize this: I have one life. I have one life to live, and I can’t sit around and let it pass by me.

Emotions aside, let’s talk about the book. I really didn’t expect to fall in love with these characters as much as I did. Mateo and Rufus (my sons)  are now some of my favorite characters in YA. Both of them were very flawed and felt very real. The character development is quite phenomenal in this book even though it takes place in a 24 hour window.

I really enjoy Adam Silvera’s writing style, and it was no different in TBDATE. Throughout the course of the book, there are a few different points of view. They mainly talk about others’ last day. They’re all important to the story, though, so please don’t skip them!

The one caution I’d like to address is this: if the talk of death or mortality makes you uncomfortable/gives you anxiety/etc., I would proceed with caution when reading They Both Die At The End.

Overall, this book was perfection, and I was not disappointed at all. I urge you to pick up They Both Die At The End on September 5! Also, the book’s setting is Sept. 5, so it gives you even more reason to binge read it the day it’s released. 🙂

So, what do I rate They Both Die At The End?

★★★★★/5 Stars

Were you able to score an ARC of They Both Die At The End? Did you enjoy it? If not, have you preordered it yet?

liv.jpg

Blog Tour: Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee {ARC Review}

Hello everyone! Today, I’m reviewing Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee through the Sunday Street Team for its release on June 27th. Without any delay, let’s get into the review!

I received the ARC through Edelweiss in order to review it for the blog tour. This in no way influences my opinion. 

Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father ha29283884ven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men.

But as Monty embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.

Witty, romantic, and intriguing at every turn, The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is a sumptuous romp that explores the undeniably fine lines between friendship and love.

How can I even form words to describe the joy I felt while reading Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue? If you don’t already have this book on your radar, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?

I really didn’t know what to expect going into the book. I thought that it would maybe be a fluffy, historical fiction novel written like a typical contemporary. I thought maybe there’d be some romance sewn in between. Flat 4/5 stars. OOOHHH NO. Not at all! I was totally wrong.

First off, the writing style was wonderful. Mackenzie Lee’s writing style was magnificent. It fit very well within the world; it especially worked well with Monty’s narration. Monty is constantly plotting mischief and being sassy 24/7 and the writing DEFINITELY showed that. The plot was very thought out and surprisingly intense! I really thought that it would be like a contemporary (minimal plot, mostly driven by characters). Again, I was very wrong because there were many times where the suspense was so strong I just had to keep reading.

Speaking of characters, LET’S TALK ABOUT THE CAST OF GENTLEMEN’S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE. They each had very distinct personalities that really worked well together. The dynamic between the main three (Felicity, Monty, and Percy) really made me enjoy the story. Felicity, Monty’s sister, is now one of my favorite characters. The story definitely didn’t let her step out of the spotlight behind Monty and Percy, and I really loved that.

The cast of characters were also very diverse (racial rep, disability rep, and more that I know I’m forgetting). It was woven into the story really well. I thought the rep was really well researched, but I’m not within these marginalization (if you are, please leave your review in the comments! I’ll add the links here).

The only issue and I say issue very lightly is that the beginning was a bit slow. I really think, though, that that was my fault more than the novel’s. I took my time reading it towards the beginning, and I feel like it made the book feel a bit slower before the 15% mark.

Overall, I LOVED Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. It is definitely a book you need to keep on your radar of upcoming releases.

So, What Do I Rate Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue?

★★★★★/5 Stars

Buy Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

Amazon- US || Amazon – UK || Barnes & Nobles || The Book Depository

About The Author

mackenzi-lee

Mackenzi Lee is a bookseller, history nerd, and the author of THE GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE, THIS MONSTROUS THING (Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins), and the forthcoming SEMPER AUGUSTUS (Flatiron Books, 2018). She holds an MFA from Simmons College in writing for children and young adults. She loves Diet Coke, sweater weather, and Star Wars. On a perfect day, she can be found enjoying all three. She currently calls Boston home.

Website: http://www.mackenzilee.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/themackenzilee

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7327341.Mackenzi_Lee

Pinterest: https://in.pinterest.com/themackenzilee/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/themackenzilee

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/themackenzilee/

Tour Stops for Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue Blog Tour

6/4 Tour Blogs Stops

Character Profiles – Blame It On The Books

Review –  Bookishly Thinking

Review –  Charmingly Simple

Interview – The Hermit Librarian

6/11 Tour Blogs Stops

Review – Tween to Teen Book Reviews

Interview – Sarcasm and Lemons

Unique Post (Ships to Travel With) – Roecker Reviews

Interview –  Books Buying Beauty

Review – The Ultimate Fangirl

6/18 Tour Blogs Stops

Review – Books and Ladders

Interview –  Book Stack Amber

Review –  YA and Wine

Review – A Thousand Words A Million Books

Unique Post (Characters in Social Media) – Live Love Read YA

6/25 Tour Blog Stops

Interview – Hopeful Reads

Review – Olivia’s Catastrophe

Review – Bayy in Wonderland

Review – Curly Hair Bibliophile

Unique Post (Mood Board) – A Book and A Cup of Coffee

Have you preordered Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue? Or were you able to read it as an ARC?

-Liv

Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee {ARC Review}

I was sent an e-ARC of Tash Hearts Tolstoy in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinion. 

29414576.jpg

After a shout-out from one of the Internet’s superstar vloggers, Natasha “Tash” 

Zelenka finds herself and her obscure, amateur web series, Unhappy Families, thrust into the limelight: She’s gone viral.

Her show is a modern adaptation of Anna Karenina—written by Tash’s literary love Count Lev Nikolayevich “Leo” Tolstoy. Tash is a fan of the forty thousand new subscribers, their gushing tweets, and flashy Tumblr GIFs. Not so much the pressure to deliver the best web series ever.

And when Unhappy Families is nominated for a Golden Tuba award, Tash’s cyber-flirtation with Thom Causer, a fellow award nominee, suddenly has the potential to become something IRL—if she can figure out how to tell said crush that she’s romantic asexual.

Tash wants to enjoy her newfound fame, but will she lose her friends in her rise to the top? What would Tolstoy do?

How can I describe my absolute admiration for this book? Tash Hearts Tolstoy exceeded all expectations I had. I’m actually having a difficult time writing this review because I just don’t know how I’ll describe it. I apologize in advance if this review is a bit jumbled.

I have fallen madly in love with Tash Hearts Tolstoy. It is a fluffy, YA contemporary that needs to be added to your TBRs IMMEDIATELY.

One thing unique about this novel is Natasha–Tash–is asexual. I have personally never read a book that features a asexual protagonist. I wrote a thread about Tash Hearts Tolstoy and what it means to me if you’d like to read it.   

I really can’t express how much I enjoyed this book. Tash Hearts Tolstoy talks about many issues, not only Tash’s sexuality. It also discusses friendships, rising to fame, family, and relationships. While Tash’s asexuality is very present in this novel, it is not the focal point. The book also explains that you can be in relationships and have romantic feelings if you are ace which is a myth that gets tossed around quite frequently.

Tash Hearts Tolstoy is just so much fun. The book is set while Tash and her friends are working on a web series. All of the characters were unique and easy to remember which is a problem I have frequently.

Tash is definitely not a perfect character which is something I really liked. In books, the characters are often seen as perfect beings. That isn’t how real humans work, though. They make mistakes and sometimes let emotions get the best of them. Tash definitely felt real. She didn’t always do or say the right things, but Tash learned from her mistakes and had strong character development by the end.

The storyline was adorable. Honestly, it reminded me of a Wattpad story in all the best ways. It was addicting and somewhat realistic but a bit idealistic. The writing style was also simple but still having the addicting style like I said before. There were many parts that were so funny I literally laughed out loud. It was overall just a heart-warming, wonderful novel.

After reading this review, you can probably tell that I LOVED Tash Hearts Tolstoy. You need to buy it as soon as you can. Read it. Love it.

So, what do I rate Tash Hearts Tolstoy?

★★★★★/5 Stars

Have you read Tash Hearts Tolstoy? Is it on your TBR yet? 

-Liv

Violet Grenade by Victoria Scott {ARC Review}

I received this ARC from Entangled Teen via Netgalley in exchange for a fair review.

28226839DOMINO: A girl with blue hair and a demon in her mind.
CAIN: A stone giant on the brink of exploding.
MADAM KARINA: A woman who demands obedience.
WILSON: The one who will destroy them all.


When Madam Karina discovers Domino in an alleyway, she offers her a position inside her home for entertainers in secluded West Texas. Left with few alternatives and an agenda of her own, Domino accepts. It isn’t long before she is fighting her way up the ranks to gain the madam’s approval. But after suffering weeks of bullying and unearthing the madam’s secrets, Domino decides to leave. It’ll be harder than she thinks, though, because the madam doesn’t like to lose inventory. But then, Madam Karina doesn’t know about the person living inside Domino’s mind. Madam Karina doesn’t know about Wilson.

If you like the trope of unreliable narrators, then this book is for you! I’ve never read anything like Violet Grenade before. In my mind, there are strong Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children and The Darkest Minds vibes in this book.

This book is so incredibly dark. I can’t stress that enough: Violet Grenade is dark. Domino falls under the unreliable narrator trope which is something I haven’t read recently. If you are a fan of that, then you’ll for sure like this book. The story follows Domino who has a voice/person in her head named Wilson. At first, I was creeped out by Wilson. By the end, I loved Wilson so much! Even the voice in her head goes through character development by the end of it.

I’d also like to say that there’s a potential TW later in the book for sexual assault and attempted rape. It’s later in the book, but it could be triggering to someone who has had history with either of these.

I didn’t completely love Violet Grenade, but it did meet my expectations. I feel like I always have an issue or two with each of  her books. Her writing style is very quirky and addicting which is one of my favorite things about her books. This isn’t my favorite of Scott’s books, but I did enjoy it more than her previous book. If you enjoy twisted/dark books, you will enjoy Violet Grenade

So, what do I rate Violet Grenade?

★★★★/5 Stars

Have you read Violet Grenade? What did you think of it? 

-Liv

 

Love, and You by Gretchen Gomez {Book Review}

34335011one day i met a guy
who stole my heart,
we created a world
for ourselves.
and another day
he broke my heart
and shattered
my soul.

i took the tattered
pieces of this
broken soul and
became anew.

– here lies the hurting, the healing, and the learning

If you liked poetry books like Milk and Honey and The Princess Saves Herself in This OneTHIS BOOK IS FOR YOU. I used to really not enjoy poetry. I thought of it as a piece of work that I had to analyze during English class. I also thought of scenes in movies/shows when a group of people sit in a cafe and a hipster guy stands at a front and proclaims an exaggerated poem while everyone snaps. So needless to say, I used to snicker at the idea of poetry. And I know I’m not alone in feeling this way.

I have changed. I read Amanda Lovelace’s The Princess Saves Herself in This One and fell in love. Just between me and you, I think I enjoyed love, and you just as much. The poems are absolutely stunning. While reading it, I could really tell Gretchen poured her heart out in the book. It’s so honest, personal, emotional, and just raw. Even though I couldn’t relate to all the poems, I certainly connected with them and learned from them.

Everyone needs to read this. Whether you were broken in a relationship, you are in an unhealthy relationship, or you don’t want to touch relationships with a ten foot pole. You will not regret reading love, and you. Even if you are not generally a ‘poetry person’, try it out! It doesn’t hurt to try. I used to be in your shoes, and now I love poetry.

I’m so excited to see Gretchen’s work take off. This was just her debut, and I’m so excited to see what comes next. love, and you is for sure a new favorite of mine.

So, what do I rate love, and you?

★★★★★/5 Stars

Have you purchased love, and you yet? 

-Liv

You’re Welcome, Universe by Whitney Gardner {ARC Review}

I received this ARC from Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinion.

25701463When Julia finds a slur about her best friend scrawled across the back of the Kingston School for the Deaf, she covers it up with a beautiful (albeit illegal) graffiti mural.

Her supposed best friend snitches, the principal expels her, and her two mothers set Julia up with a one-way ticket to a “mainstream” school in the suburbs, where she’s treated like an outcast as the only deaf student. The last thing she has left is her art, and not even Banksy himself could convince her to give that up.

Out in the ’burbs, Julia paints anywhere she can, eager to claim some turf of her own. But Julia soon learns that she might not be the only vandal in town. Someone is adding to her tags, making them better, showing off—and showing Julia up in the process. She expected her art might get painted over by cops. But she never imagined getting dragged into a full-blown graffiti war.

In 2016, I became interested in a musical called Spring Awakening. It is a rock-musical based in 1800s Germany. A few months ago, I discovered Spring Awakening had a second run on Broadway. The second production was different because of this: a majority of the cast was deaf. The production was put on by the Deaf West Theatre in LA. As soon as I saw the Deaf West production of it, I became interested in sign language. I was fascinated that this language is entirely spoken by hand movements. I’m slowly trying to learn it now (I can say my name is Olivia and how are you woohoo).
I then began my research to find Young Adult books with a hearing impaired main character. I sent a request to Penguin Randomhouse and received an ARC.
I was really excited to finally read a book with deaf representation. With that being said, I think my expectations for You’re Welcome, Universe were a bit too high. The book was definitely good–don’t get me wrong. It just didn’t live up to the hype I felt. I really expected to be BLOWN AWAY, but I sadly didn’t feel that way.
Firstly, let’s talk about the diversity in You’re Welcome, Universe. We have an Indian-American teen, who is deaf, with two moms who are also deaf. Julia’s deafness was *what I believe to be* very accurate. In many other books/movies/TV shows, it depicts that there is no communication barrier between a deaf person and a hearing person. However, that is definitely not the case. Many deaf individuals can’t lipread very well, and most hearing individuals only know minimal sign language. It was very interesting reading a story like this in a deaf person’s POV.
Within the book, there are many pages with spray-paint artwork. I really admired this extra feature on the book, especially that it fit really well with the story. Julie is a graffiti artist which was really cool because I’ve never seen someone with that interest in a YA novel.
This book was not perfect. That’s quite an obvious statement because no book is truly perfect. In particular, I wasn’t super in love with the writing style. It felt very blatant; I just really wasn’t a fan. Also, the characters didn’t really grip me like I wish they would. The characters weren’t very unique. They were pretty ‘black and white stereotypical high school’ personalities.
With all that being said, I’m still really glad I read You’re Welcome, Universe. I really enjoyed the different areas of diversity within this novel.

So, what do I rate You’re Welcome, Universe?

★★★★/5 Stars

 

Have you purchased/read You’re Welcome, Universe yet?

-Liv

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli {ARC Review}

I received this book from Harper Collins in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinion.


5139zwihtyl-_sx329_bo1204203200_Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

Right?

I genuinely believe that Becky Albertalli is the queen of YA contemporary. I’m serious. Fun Fact: I have never read a Becky Albertalli book. After reading The Upside of Unrequited, I know I need to quickly change that. I was waiting for the release date to read this book, until I checked my email and found an email from HaperCollins with a link to download from Edelweiss. You can imagine my excitement as I downloaded it.

Let’s discuss one of the many qualities of this book: diversity. This book intertwines diversity so flawlessly within the book. There was representation for both LGBTQ+  and PoC. It is very evident that Becky used sensitivity readers throughout this book (she also includes them in her acknowledgements).

The protagonist, Molly, is one of my favorite characters of all time. She’s a fat, Jewish, Pinterest-Queen, seventeen year old teenager. It’s quite common for fat girls to be comic relief in movies, books, TV shows, etc. Yes, Molly was hilarious, but not because of her weight. In fact, there is even a scene where she is told that she is told that she’s “gorgeous for a big girl”. Molly’s narrative definitely tells the truth that big girls can love and be loved too. It’s pretty sad that, in 2017, this is a truth that needs to still be taught.

The writing style is also something I would like to note. Becky’s writing style is one of the best I’ve seen in the YA community. It grabs you from the beginning and will not let go until you’re done. Even once you’re done, you want more. All the characters were perfectly imperfect. They were all far from perfect which made it absolutely perfect.

I really wish everyone could read Upside of Unrequited. Even if you are not normally a fan of contemporary, I’m certain you will still enjoy it.  The overall story felt like a warm hug. I really can’t form my thoughts into words; I’m so in love with The Upside of Unrequited. This book is a definite must-read.

So, what do I rate The Upside of Unrequited?

★★★★★/5 Stars

Have you read The Upside of Unrequited yet? If not, is it on your TBR?

-Liv

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas {Book Review}

32075671Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend, Khalil, at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, Khalil’s death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Starr’s best friend at school suggests he may have had it coming. When it becomes clear the police have little interest in investigating the incident, protesters take to the streets and Starr’s neighborhood becomes a war zone. What everyone wants to know is: What really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

But what Starr does—or does not—say could destroy her community. It could also endanger her life.

Is it too early in the year to declare a book to be your favorite read of 2017? If it isn’t too early, then The Hate U Give is my favorite read of 2017. Saying this book is ‘important’ doesn’t give it justice. The Hate U Give is a masterpiece. Despite its release date only being ten days ago, I already know this book will change YA literature forever. Before I start into my main review, I would like to clarify something. This novel is about a black female protagonist, and I am a white female. I encourage you to check out reviews by bloggers of color to get their interpretation of this novel. I will link some reviews at the bottom of this post.

The Hate U Give is 444 pages. However, as the end approached, I didn’t want it to end. Also, I normally do not cry in books. In the past few years, there have been very few books that I cried in. With all that being said, I cried four different times in The Hate U Give. What disgusted me even more is this: this book is not completely fiction. It’s a bit obvious that this book was inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement. The events that unfold in the book are not uncommon. THUG sheds light on how the media and people in general treat unfair killings. The book is really an analysis of how these killings affect the black community. It describes the nightmares and the visions that Starr feels after she witnessed the murder of her unarmed, black best friend.

One of Thomas’s strongest suits is characterization. All the characters, no matter how influential they are to the plot, act as though they are important. They all have detailed pasts; they are all flawed and unique in their own way. Starr’s family is one of my favorite fictional families of all YA books. They’re messy; they fight, laugh, and cry. Most importantly, they are a family. They support and love each other no matter what. Of course, they definitely have their issues, but ultimately you know they love each other and that’s all that matters.

Everything about THUG was perfect. The characters, the writing, the dialogue, the descriptions, everything. The Hate U Give is a 2017 debut that you DO NOT want to miss. THUG is definitely a game changer in the YA genre. 

So, what do I rate The Hate U Give

★★★★★/5

Links to THUG Reviews by Black Reviwers:

https://booksmcghee.wordpress.com/2017/03/01/the-hate-u-give-by-angie-thomas-review/

https://afroboricuareads.wordpress.com/2016/12/05/afroboricua-reads-book-reviews-the-hate-u-give-by-angie-thomas/

http://dulivre.blogspot.com/2017/02/book-review-hate-u-give.html?m=1

*If there are any more THUG reviews by black reviewers please let me know so I can include them*

(I have a giveaway for THUG on Twitter! Ends April 7th).

Have you read The Hate U Give? Did you like it? Why do you think this book is so important?
-Liv

Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors, and Trailblazers Who Changed History by Sam Maggs {Book Review}

I received this book from Quirk Books in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinions.

28503941Goodreads Link

Ever heard of Allied spy Noor Inayat Khan, a Muslim woman whom the Nazis considered “highly dangerous”? Or German painter and entomologist Maria Sibylla Merian, who planned and embarked on the world’s first scientific expedition? How about Huang Daopo, the inventor who fled an abusive child marriage only to revolutionize textile production in China?

Think of a scientist in all of history. You may be thinking of Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, or even Sir Isaac Newton. What is one thing they all have in common? They are all men. No doubt, they did some incredible work. However, what I learned from Wonder Women is that there are countless women who have made groundbreaking discoveries in STEM, but they have been overlooked due to their gender.

I was surprised with how much I enjoyed Wonder Women. I went into this book with ‘meh’ expectations, but I was blown away with how much I loved this. The book covers everything from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) to even Espionage (spy stuff…it’s as cool as it sounds). I was a bit worried that Wonder Women might be like a school-required reading assignment. I am not a big fan of science and math; I *usually* struggle in both of those subjects in school. With that being said, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist or a math wizard to enjoy Wonder Women. 

Sam Maggs wrote Wonder Women for people who aren’t experts in STEM. Sure, there are terms and phrases that may go over your heard. It’s nothing too extreme that will make you not understand the overall story. The book covers women from all backgrounds, ethnicities, sexualities, etc. It also includes interviews and short essays from women who currently work in STEM careers. Wonder Women not only talks about women through history, but it also encourages girls to pursue careers in STEM. This book is perfect for anyone who is a feminist and wants to learn about different contributions women have made in history. Overall, I enjoyed Wonder Women and will be rereading it again in the future.

So, what do I rate Wonder Women?

★★★★/5

Are you a feminist? Are you interested in reading Wonder Women? Have you read it already?

-Liv

The Princess Saves Herself in This One by Amanda Lovelace {Book Review}

31eo3lmnvcl

Goodreads Link

“ah, life-
the thing
that happens
to us
while we’re off
somewhere else
blowing on
dandelions
& wishing
ourselves into
the pages of
our favorite
fairy tales.”

a poetry collection divided into four different parts: the princess, the damsel, the queen, & you. the princess, the damsel, & the queen piece together the life of the author in three stages, while you serves as a note to the reader & all of humankind. explores life & all of its love, loss, grief, healing, empowerment, & inspirations.

A month or two ago, in the book community, there was a an event that triggered a huge discussion about diversity. When that happened, I wanted to make myself read more diverse books. I heard about this book and instantly fell in love with it. Even if you don’t think poetry is for you, you will still love this book. It’s hard to review a book like this because of how personal it is. There were many poems in here that I could (sadly) relate to. Honestly, all I can say is you need to read this book. No matter who you are, you need to read this book. It’s been almost a month since I read this book, and I still can’t string together words to describe how much I love this poetry book.

So, what do I rate The Princess Saves Herself in This One

★★★★★/5

-Liv