New Blogging Format

Let’s be honest. Do you actually read a full review of a book? I don’t ever sit down and read a full two paragraphs about some book that I didn’t actually like. I get bored! What are your thoughts about this?

I have been thinking about changing up my format for my reviews. It goes along with the first part. I’m getting tired of writing so much on my reviews. It’s taking away from my love of reading because when I get close to finishing a book, I know I’ll have to come up with at least a paragraph of likes and dislikes about the book. I’m considering using one word to describe the books I read unless I truly have lots to say about the book. Would you guys still enjoy my blog if I didn’t write as much?

Brooklynn Jennifer

Lola and the Boy Next Door Review

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Title: Lola and the Boy Next Door

Author: Stephanie Perkins

Page Number: 338

Release Date: August 2014

Format: Paperback

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

Lola Nolan is a budding costume designer, and for her, the more outrageous, sparkly, and fun the outfit, the better. And everything is pretty perfect in her life (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood. When Cricket, a gifted inventor, steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.

5 out of 5 stars

This book was adorable! I could not put this book down. Every extra moment I had, I would be reading this book. The characters in this book are charming. They are geeky and unique, and I love them. Okay I’ll be honest. I mostly just loved Cricket. He is inventive, fun, and caring. Lola bothered me slightly just because she complained about all these problems but most of them were self inflicted. At first I thought Max and Lola were a cute couple, but as the story progressed, my feelings towards Max completely changed. I saw him as the older guy just using Lola for a fun time. Super glad that he was kicked out of the picture. I’m happy that Anna and St. Clare were in the book as well. I’ve missed their adorable relationship. I’m starting to really love Stephanie Perkins writing style. Out of her books I’ve read, I haven’t found one that I don’t fall in love with! I will definitely be continuing to read her books.

Brooklynn Jennifer 

House of Leaves Review

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Title: House of Leaves

Author: Mark Z. Danielewki

Page Number: 709

Release Date: March 7, 2000

Format: Paperback

Source: My local bookstore

Synopsis:

Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth—musicians, tattoo artists, programmers, strippers, environmentalists, and adrenaline junkies—the book eventually made its way into the hands of older generations, who not only found themselves in those strangely arranged pages but also discovered a way back into the lives of their estranged children.

Now, for the first time, this astonishing novel is made available in book form, complete with the original colored words, vertical footnotes, and newly added second and third appendices.

The story remains unchanged, focusing on a young family that moves into a small home on Ash Tree Lane where they discover something is terribly wrong: their house is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside.

Of course, neither Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Will Navidson nor his companion Karen Green was prepared to face the consequences of that impossibility, until the day their two little children wandered off and their voices eerily began to return another story—of creature darkness, of an ever-growing abyss behind a closet door, and of that unholy growl which soon enough would tear through their walls and consume all their dreams.

1 out of 5 stars

This book was not for me. It bounces around too much with each story with in it for me to get involved in the stories. Nothing was ever explained. Everything was just kind of up in the air. It was very boring to read. House of Leaves is not an easy read. You have to struggle to comprehend the writing. Not to mention that it is sometimes written upside down, backwards, in patterns relating to the event, and much more. This was the only part of the book that I liked. I enjoyed when there was only one sentence on the page because it felt relaxing to read. You didn’t have to think to much about putting all the pieces together; it was just right there in one beautiful sentence. This book just felt like an experiment gone wrong. I don’t understand why this is so highly rated. I feel like this is one of those books that people read to say that they’ve read it like all of the classics. Try it for yourself and let me know what you think!

Brooklynn Jennifer 

Return to the Isle of the Lost Review

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Title: Return to the Isle of the Lost

Author: Melissa De La Cruz

Page Number: 320

Release Date: May 24, 2016

Format: Hardcover

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

There’s no place like home. Especially if home is the infamous Isle of the Lost. Mal, Evie, Carlos, and Jay haven’t exactly turned their villainous noses up at the comforts of Auradon after spending their childhoods banished on the Isle. After all, meeting princes and starring on the Tourney team aren’t nearly as terrible as Mal and her friends once thought they would be.

But when they receive a mysterious invitation to return to the Isle, Mal, Evie, Carlos, and Jay can’t help feeling comfortable in their old hood—and their old ways. Not everything is how they left it, though, and when they discover a dark mystery at the Isle’s core, they’ll have to combine all of their talents in order to save the kingdom.

4 out of 5 stars

I wanted more from Ben and Mal. I figured since we already saw them in the movie, the book would contain more. Nothing. AGH! If there is another book, there better be more from Ben and Mal, just saying. Something else that bothered me was Jay was never protrayed as a fast, athletic person in the first book. In the movie and this book, he is a sporty guy and star athlete. It was just odd to me. The events leading up to Mal, Evie, Carlos, and Jay finding each talilsman kind of got boring. I kept thinking it was building up to something big then nothing. I definitely thought the dragon was someone else. I didn’t expect the ending. Again, it went to nothing. The book was still well written. It flowed well. It just could have described the events better. I feel like this book is a wee bit better than the first book. The book was a little rushed, but it was still a good read!

Brooklynn Jennifer

The Beginning of Everything Review

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Title: The Beginning of Everything

Author: Robyn Schneider

Page Number: 335

Release Date: July 29, 2014

Format: Paperback

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

Robyn Schneider’s The Beginning of Everything is a witty and heart-wrenching teen novel that will appeal to fans of books by John Green and Ned Vizzini, novels such as The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and classics like The Great Gatsby and The Catcher in the Rye.

Varsity tennis captain, Ezra Faulkner, was supposed to be homecoming king, but that was before—before his girlfriend cheated on him, before a car accident shattered his leg, and before he fell in love with unpredictable new girl Cassidy Thorpe.

As Kirkus Reviews said in a starred review, “Schneider takes familiar stereotypes and infuses them with plenty of depth. Here are teens who could easily trade barbs and double entendres with the characters that fill John Green’s novels.”

Funny, smart, and including everything from flash mobs to blanket forts to a poodle who just might be the reincarnation of Jay Gatsby, The Beginning of Everything is a refreshing contemporary twist on the classic coming-of-age novel—a heart-wrenching story about how difficult it is to play the part that people expect, and how new beginnings can stem from abrupt and tragic endings.

4 out of 5 stars

“I think that everyone has a tragedy waiting for them, that the people buying milk in their pajamas or picking their noses at stoplights could be only moments away from disaster. That everyone’s life, no matter how unremarkable, has a moment when it will become extraordinary – a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen.”

I was hooked by the first paragraph. I love the idea that everyone gets a tragedy. Some people have already had theirs and others are waiting. Ezra being the narrator of this book made it have a different feeling. I feel like most love stories are written from the point of view of the girl, so this was a good change. This book is kind of the classic boy being the most popular then his world gets turned around. I didn’t really like Cassidy, but I enjoyed her and Ezra’s relationship. She would give Ezra these life lessons for him to live his own life, but she would never return anything. She wasn’t really open towards him. I was really disappointed by the ending. It wasn’t what I was expecting; I felt it just kind of went down to nothing. So yes I was hooked in the first paragraph, but by the end my love for the book diminished. It took me a while to write this review because I had no idea what to write. It was good and it wasn’t. I think it depends on your personality and mood when you read this book as to if you will like it or not. So give it a try for yourself! (:

Brooklynn Jennifer

The Isle of the Lost Review

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Title: The Isle of the Lost

Author: Melissa De La Cruz

Page Number: 311

Release Date: May 5, 2015

Format: Hardcover

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

Twenty years ago, all the evil villains were banished from the kingdom of Auradon and made to live in virtual imprisonment on the Isle of the Lost. The island is surrounded by a magical force field that keeps the villains and their descendants safely locked up and away from the mainland. Life on the island is dark and dreary. It is a dirty, decrepit place that’s been left to rot and forgotten by the world.

But hidden in the mysterious Forbidden Fortress is a dragon’s eye: the key to true darkness and the villains’ only hope of escape. Only the cleverest, evilest, nastiest little villain can find it…who will it be?

Maleficent, Mistress of the Dark: As the self-proclaimed ruler of the isle, Maleficent has no tolerance for anything less than pure evil. She has little time for her subjects, who have still not mastered life without magic. Her only concern is getting off the Isle of the Lost.

Mal: At sixteen, Maleficent’s daughter is the most talented student at Dragon Hall, best known for her evil schemes. And when she hears about the dragon’s eye, Mal thinks this could be her chance to prove herself as the cruelest of them all.

Evie: Having been castle-schooled for years, Evil Queen’s daughter, Evie, doesn’t know the ins and outs of Dragon Hall. But she’s a quick study, especially after she falls for one too many of Mal’s little tricks.

Jay: As the son of Jafar, Jay is a boy of many talents: stealing and lying to name a few. Jay and Mal have been frenemies forever and he’s not about to miss out on the hunt for the dragon’s eye.

Carlos: Cruella de Vil’s son may not be bravest, but he’s certainly clever. Carlos’s inventions may be the missing piece in locating the dragon’s eye and ending the banishment for good.

Mal soon learns from her mother that the dragon’s eye is cursed and whoever retrieves it will be knocked into a deep sleep for a thousand years. But Mal has a plan to capture it. She’ll just need a little help from her “friends.” In their quest for the dragon’s eye, these kids begin to realize that just because you come from an evil family tree, being good ain’t so bad.

4 out of 5 stars

This book surprised me! I am in love with this movie, so I figured the books would be great reads for me. I started out totally intrigued. I got to learn more about the Mal, Carlos, Evie, Jay, and even more about Ben. After I learned about the mission they were going on, I got bored. From that point it was no longer the fun, creative, and new fairy tale. It went to the classic tales. I like the theme the book gives off though. All these kids coming together to try and prove to their parents that they are worth more. In the process of this, they learn that friendship isn’t a bad thing. You can trust someone other than yourself. I was disappointed that they hadn’t gone to Auradon yet. Like I said I was hoping for a story more so like the movie, but this is the before. If you love the movie like me, this book shows you how the “villians” got to be at the spot they were at. After looking on Goodreads, I learned that this is the first book, the movie is the second, and Return to the Isle of the Lost is the last one. I enjoy the fact that the movie is what continues the story of the books. I have a good feeling about this series!

Brooklynn Jennifer 

The Rose and the Dagger Review

The Rose and the Dagger

Title: The Rose & the Dagger

Author: Renée Ahdieh

Page Number: 416

Release Date: April 26, 2016

Format: Hardcover

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

The darker the sky, the brighter the stars.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad is forced from the arms of her beloved husband, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once thought Khalid a monster—a merciless killer of wives, responsible for immeasurable heartache and pain—but as she unraveled his secrets, she found instead an extraordinary man and a love she could not deny. Still, a curse threatens to keep Shazi and Khalid apart forever.

Now she’s reunited with her family, who have found refuge in the desert, where a deadly force is gathering against Khalid—a force set on destroying his empire and commanded by Shazi’s spurned childhood sweetheart. Trapped between loyalties to those she loves, the only thing Shazi can do is act. Using the burgeoning magic within her as a guide, she strikes out on her own to end both this terrible curse and the brewing war once and for all. But to do it, she must evade enemies of her own to stay alive.

The saga that began with The Wrath and the Dawn takes its final turn as Shahrzad risks everything to find her way back to her one true love again.

4 out of 5 stars

Renée Ahdieh did a good job of continuing the same writing style. This book had less romance than the first one. It got confusing at times. It was hard to keep all the characters straight from the first book. For me, it took some time to get into it. I wanted more of Khalid and less of Tariq. I wasn’t a fan of Tariq until the end of the book. Khalid grew as a character in this book. He learned to trust, and he learned how to not use violence as his first tactic. He became a good leader. I’m still a little confused about my feelings towards this book. I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t the best. I can’t figure out what I didn’t like about it. I still couldn’t put it down. I needed to know how everything played out. Give this book a try!

Brooklynn Jennifer

Crimson Bound Review

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Title: Crimson Bound

Author: Rosamund Hodge

Page Number: 448

Release Date: May 5, 2015

Format: Hardcover

Source: Our local bookstore

Synopsis:

When Rachelle was fifteen she was good—apprenticed to her aunt and in training to protect her village from dark magic. But she was also reckless— straying from the forest path in search of a way to free her world from the threat of eternal darkness. After an illicit meeting goes dreadfully wrong, Rachelle is forced to make a terrible choice that binds her to the very evil she had hoped to defeat.

Three years later, Rachelle has given her life to serving the realm, fighting deadly creatures in an effort to atone. When the king orders her to guard his son Armand—the man she hates most—Rachelle forces Armand to help her find the legendary sword that might save their world. As the two become unexpected allies, they uncover far-reaching conspiracies, hidden magic, and a love that may be their undoing. In a palace built on unbelievable wealth and dangerous secrets, can Rachelle discover the truth and stop the fall of endless night?

Inspired by the classic fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, Crimson Bound is an exhilarating tale of darkness, love, and redemption.

3 out of 5 stars

I struggled with deciding between giving this book 3 stars or 4 stars. I so badly wanted this book to make me fall in love with it like Cruel Beauty, but it fell short. The plot and characters felt like they were trying to hard to be like Cruel Beauty. The plot was just confusing at times. There was a lot of extra paragraphs that never really explained anything further, so I was stuck with confusion. The character’s quest to find Joyeuse was bothersome. Rachelle was whiny. She couldn’t decide if she needed to follow her heart, desire, or pull of the forest. I felt like most of the book was here complaining. Erec was stuck in this good guy, bad guy thing. It’s like Hodge couldn’t decide herself if he was suppose to be good or bad. There was the same problem with Armand. Parts of this book were good and showed potential, but what you thought would build up to something great, fell very short of expectations. Everything says that this book is not a part of Cruel Beauty, but every part of this story reflects that story.

Brooklynn Jennifer

Lady Midnight Review

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Title: Lady Midnight

Author: Cassandra Clare

Page Number: 668

Release Date: March 8, 2016

Format: Hardcover

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

In a kingdom by the sea…

In a secret world where half-angel warriors are sworn to fight demons, parabatai is a sacred word.

A parabatai is your partner in battle. A parabatai is your best friend. Parabatai can be everything to each other—but they can never fall in love.

Emma Carstairs is a warrior, a Shadowhunter, and the best in her generation. She lives for battle. Shoulder to shoulder with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, she patrols the streets of Los Angeles, where vampires party on the Sunset Strip, and faeries—the most powerful of supernatural creatures—teeter on the edge of open war with Shadowhunters. When the bodies of humans and faeries turn up murdered in the same way Emma’s parents were when she was a child, an uneasy alliance is formed. This is Emma’s chance for revenge—and Julian’s chance to get back his brother Mark, who is being held prisoner by the faerie Courts. All Emma, Mark, and Julian have to do is solve the murders within two weeks…and before the murderer targets them.

Their search takes Emma from sea caves full of sorcery to a dark lottery where death is dispensed. And each clue she unravels uncovers more secrets. What has Julian been hiding from her all these years? Why does Shadowhunter Law forbid parabatai to fall in love? Who really killed her parents—and can she bear to know the truth?

5 out of 5 stars

WOW.

I thought I would struggle getting through this book because of its size, but wow did that go fast. I wanted more. The war between good and bad was really good. I loved the way everything played out. You don’t expect the who the bad guy is until it’s almost too late. I am still kind of processing everything. The characters were perfect! I loved everyone of them, but they broke my heart sometimes. Their sadness was my sadness, and when they were happy, so was I. What is there to say about Emma and Julian? I loved them! I thought my heart was going to be happy, but they broke me. I can’t wait for the next book to see where that goes. The end of the book was sooo good. It was well described and all the loose ends got tied up. Well most! If she had tied up all the loose ends, there wouldn’t be the other two books in this series. The last sentence of the book made me have mixed emotions. (I won’t spoil anything.) Please just read this book! Don’t think of it as Cassandra Clare trying to keep her money and fame because she put just as much effort into this book as she has all of her other ones. She did not fail us with Lady Midnight.

Brooklynn Jennifer

Fangirl Review

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Title: Fangirl

Author: Rainbow Rowell

Page Number: 433

Release date: September 10, 2013

Format: Hardcover

Source: Amazon

Synopsis:

A coming-of-age tale of fanfiction, family and first love

CATH IS A SIMON SNOW FAN. Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan… But for Cath, being a fan is her life–and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fanfiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath that she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend; a fiction-writing professor who thinks fanfiction is the end of the civilized world; a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words…and she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

4 out of 5 stars

This book was recommended to me by a friend. When I first read the synopsis, it didn’t sound intriguing at all. You would think it was a story about a girl who just loves writing fanfiction.  I finally decided to read it, and it was perfect! There is so much more to it than just a girl trying to live without her twin. There was characters struggling with being an alcoholic, cheating, coping with the new environments, and much more. I could relate to Cath so much. She loved just being in her room with her fictional worlds. Levi was so lovable. He is one of the main reasons Cath came out of her room and out of her bubble. Levi and Cath’s relationship was adorable. I didn’t want it to end. Speaking of end, the ending of the book felt very abrupt. I wish it was a little more clarified. There are very few things that I didn’t like about this book. In the end, this book was adorable. Once I got into it, I couldn’t put it down. I just kept reading and reading. Don’t base this book off of the synopsis because it is so much more than that.

Brooklynn Jennifer