Review: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven


All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
When I first read the summary for All The Bright Places, I was immediately intrigued. I’d been looking for a good book that discussed the struggle of living with depression or another mental illness. Even though the book was compared to The Fault In Our Stars, I was weary of an adult’s first young adult novel dealing with such tough subjects. However, as the book got more and more attention, and raving reviews by some of my friends, I became less weary and finally picked it up.

I’m so glad that I picked this book up because it was what I’d been looking for. I’m not saying the book was perfect, and it most certainly wasn’t imperfect, but it brought to light so many issues and handled them with the right amount of delicacy and seriousness. The only problem that I did have was probably just the normal first book in the genre/age group bump. Other than that, I really liked the book.

I’m not going to do a traditional review for this book as I don’t think I can adequately express my feelings for it. Instead, I want you all to share your thoughts with me about the book, the issues it brings up, and what you think of the diversity in the ya bookish community. Do you think books like All The Bright Places are enough or do we need even more?

Once again, what did you think of the book?

Jackie

“Waiting On Wednesday” 6 – Tiny Pretty Things bySona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton


New+WoW
“Waiting on Wednesday” is a weekly meme hosted by that spotlights releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.
Today my WoW is Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton.
Tiny Pretty Things


Title: Tiny Pretty Things

Authors: Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton

Publication Date: May 26, 2015

Series: none

Synopsis:

Black Swan meets Pretty Little Liars in this soapy, drama-packed novel featuring diverse characters who will do anything to be the prima at their elite ballet school.

Gigi, Bette, and June, three top students at an exclusive Manhattan ballet school, have seen their fair share of drama. Free-spirited new girl Gigi just wants to dance—but the very act might kill her. Privileged New Yorker Bette’s desire to escape the shadow of her ballet star sister brings out a dangerous edge in her. And perfectionist June needs to land a lead role this year or her controlling mother will put an end to her dancing dreams forever. When every dancer is both friend and foe, the girls will sacrifice, manipulate, and backstab to be the best of the best.


While I don’t particularly enjoy Pretty Little Liars because it seems to drag, I really like the concept of the two books. I like seeing books that have competition in them to see how authors create their characters and make them grow. Plus, I wish I could dance and by reading this I can do it vicariously. Lastly, it seems like it might be like Dance Moms which I used to watch.
What is your WoW this week?
Jackie

{Discussion} 2 – Why I Buy Books


This may seem like a weird post title with an easy answer: I buy books because I love to read and support authors. However, if you’ve been following my blog for a while, you probably know I’m blind. If not, well now you know.
Recently, I’ve been getting various questions as to why I buy hardcopy print books. Honestly, I see where people are coming from with this question. Why would I buy print books when I can’t read them and could as easily buy the eBook? Actually, there are ways I can read print books as this post shows, but while I could buy the electronic copy I hold out hope that ONE DAY I’ll be able to see. I know, wishful thinking, right?
I’ve always been told that I’m a good writer, and recently, Shannon from It Starts At Midnight wrote a discussion/review of All The Bright Places about how mental illness is being incorporated more in YA books. I wrote a comment basically saying I agree, but also think people with mental/physical disabilities should also be written about. All in all, she said that she agreed and asked if I thought about becoming a writer. Honestly, I have but I didn’t think I was “good enough” to write.
I promise, I haven’t lost my marbles and I know the whole buying books/writing thing doesn’t make sense, but stick with me.
Anyway, on January 29, I attended the Sarah Dessen and Gayle Forman event at Flyleaf books. Unlike my Sara Raasch event (which I loved) the event consisted of a question and answer portion between the two authors and one between them and readers. While I was there, the two authors discussed their books as well as the reasons behind them and why they began to write. I can’t remember which author said this, but one of the authors said she wrote because it helped her sort through events she was currently experiencing. She said that even though her characters were teenagers she wrote about events in her life through them because they were great messengers and they had the power to reach so many people.
This got me thinking: “I should start writing.” Well, the idea of writing kept rolling around in my head for the remainder of the discussion, but it became cemented when the two authors began talking about the diverse characters in their books. Since I’d read some of Dessen’s novels I knew her characters brought new perspectives to the table. However, (and I know this is embarrassing) I had never read a Forman book. When the two started talking about the characters, I realized that I may not know what it’s like to have a friend commit suicide, have a brother in prison, or be abandoned by my parents, I DO know what it’s like to be “different.” This conviction and sense of gratitude I had for the authors and the type of issues and characters they write about made me further convinced that I should write.
While I had written short stories and essays for school, I’d never really considered it. Okay, that’s not true, I started a story or two with one of my best friends. i also started (and am considering picking back up) a story about domestic violence. Anyway, I kept toying with the idea of writing until I got up to the signing and actually meeting the two authors.
I know, I know. Jackie, what about the part about buying books? Well, the whole discussion combined with my desire to start writing reminded me of why I buy books. I buy books because they have changed my life completely. Without them, I’d probably be an emotional wreck and/or really really depressed. Books are the thing that has grounded me ever since I picked up my first Harry Potter. But, why don’t you buy the eBook? Good question, while it is much easier for me to read eBooks, I like buying hard copies of books I’m going to get signed or really liked. Again, I know the only way to read these is with the use of special technology or eBooks. however, I keep hoping that one day I’ll be able to hold a book under my hands, feeling the pages turn as my eyes take in the information and my nose inhales the scent. This goes back to the reason I started blogging, reading, and essentially what keeps me going each day. As I’m writing this I’m crying, but hope is truly what keeps me going along with the many friends I’ve made through books and blogging. Lastly, I buy books because I want my children to read and be able to say they have signed copies/original copies.
Anyway back to the signing. When I got up to the line, I thought of all the things I’d say when I got the chance to talk with them. In the end, I told them what I’ve written in this post: that I appreciate all of the characters they write because I don’t feel so alone. Again, I may not go through the exact issues as the characters, it’s nice to know other people are struggling–even if they are in a book. After that, I almost cried and when I took a picture, and hugged both authors, I think I cried a little. Authors, bloggers, friends, and books are why I wrote this post and why I buy books.
Thank you all so much for supporting me and my blog. I trulyy don’t know what I’d do, or where I’d be without you. I am so grateful I have such awesome friends and followers. Even if I only get one view in a week, I’m glad because I know that I helped someone choose a book and I feel like I’ve made a difference.
Once again, thank you all for supporting me and my blog.
Is their anything you want me to answer? Please ask me anything about me, books, or blogging. Also, use the hashtag #AskJackie and tweet me your questions at @Jackie_Girl02.

2015 Book Blogger LoveAThon Mini Challenge 2 – Book valentine!


For my first Valentine, I’ll be writing a letter to one of my favorite authors: Sarah Dessen.


Dear Sarah Dessen,

You’ve probably heard this various times, but I ABSOLUTELY love your books. While I haven’t read all of them, the ones I have read have been perfect and eye-opening. Even though I haven’t experienced some of the same things as your characters, I do know what it’s like to be “different” and I know how much it hurts. Like your characters who find friends I have found friends as a blogger.

Much like your characters who have circumstances that set them aside, such as being the new kid or losing a loved one, I’m often set apart because I’m blind. I try to change that everyday, but in the real world people just can’t seem to see past it. Maybe its because they see me with my electronics, cane, and braille, but when I blog and talk to my blogger friends, it all goes away. I’m so thankful for the books you write because they remind me I’m not alone! They remind me that there are other people struggling and that I should push forward.

When I was in a dark place in my life–being bullied because of my blindness and had no friends–your books helped me move forward. I am so glad I got to meet you a month ago and tell you some of this in person and am so grateful for your books!

Sincerely,

Jackie


My next valentine is to Jase from My Life Next Door.


Jase!

You are amazing! I love everything Samantha, and I learned from you and your family. Your personality and understanding are amazing and eye-opening. Thank you for being so awesome. 😍☺☺💙💜💚

Keep teaching us,

Jackie


What did you think?

Leave me a link to your Post!

Jackie

Love A Thon Introduction Post


As a fairly new blogger, I decided to join in the #LoveAThon hosted by Alexa from Alexa Loves Books. At first, I wasn’t going to join, but after I saw some of my blogger friends join, I decided to take the plunge. I’m so glad I did as it’ll give me a chance to connect with even MORE blogger buddies. For this post, I’ll be answering a few questions about myself.
Love A Thon

  1. What’s your name?

    My name is Jackie.

  2. Where in the world are you blogging from?

    I’m blogging from Virginia. Any other Virginian bloggers out there?

  3. How did you get into blogging in the first place?

    I have a friend who blogs about beauty and fashion and thought blogging looked interesting. At first, I created the blog to be about whatever I wanted, but it slowly became a book blog as I found out about the community.

  4. How did you come up with your blog name?

    Honestly, JackieGirl02 was born from my twitter handle and because I couldn’t think of anything better. I’m hoping to change my domain name to JackiesBookShenanigans soon. However, if you have any other name suggestions I’d love to hear them! I was also thinking something along the lines of “One Page At A Time,” “Seeing The World Through Books,” “Books at my finger tips,” or “Seeing Through Books.”

  5. What genre do you read and review the most on your blog?

    I would have to say I’ve reviewed mostly fantasy, but want to read and review more New Adult, Contemporary, and Chicklit books so if you have any suggestions please let me know.

  6. What other types of posts do you do on your blog, apart from reviews?

    I will occasionally do blog tours and blasts, but mostly I do “Top Ten Tuesday,” “Waiting On Wednesday,” and I’m hoping to do more discussion posts. If you have any questions about me, reading, or blogging let me know.

  7. Best blogging experience so far?

    I would have to say my best blogging experiences have been going to a Sara Raasch signing, attending the Gayle Forman and Sarah Dessen signing, and joining #OTSPSecretSister.

  8. Favorite thing about the blogging community?

    I really like how open and welcoming my blogger friends have been. I especially love that it’s a community who has accepted me despite my blindness and doesn’t treat me differently because of it.

  9. Name the 5 books you’re most excited for this 2015!

    Five! Only Five!

    1. The Third Twin by C.J. Omololu

      The book comes out on Tuesday and I highly recommend it.

    2. Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton

      This book looks amazing! My next WoW gives the reasons why so you should check that out come Wednesday!

    3. The White Rose by Amy Ewing

      I read and reviewed The Jewel here and can’t wait to read this!

    4. The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy

      This looks like an amazing suspense/mystery! If you have any mystery or cozy mystery suggestions, let me know.

    5. Becoming Jinn by Lori Goldstein

      This looks like a great book and I can’t wait to read it.

  10. What’s an underrated book or series that you think everyone should read?

    I think people should read any Sarah Dessen book! Now, if I had to choose a book it would be The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen. The series I’d choose would have to be The Lone City series by Amy Ewing.

  11. Which book boy or girl would be your book BFF?

    Okay, so this question is COMPLETELY unfair! My latest book bff would have to be Jase from My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick.

  12. Apart from reading, what are your other hobbies or interests?

    I like to sing, act, and bake when I’m not reading. I’m taking a musical theatre class in school right now and I love it! Actually, I considered studying theatre as a major, but now I think I’ll do it as a minor/hobby.

  13. Apart from book shopping, what else do you like shopping for?

    Honestly, I don’t like shopping for much apart from books. I can tell you one thing, I definitely don’t like shopping for clothes for long periods of time. I like shopping for blankets–I have too many, cups/mugs/water bottles–I also have too many although not as many as blankets, and whatever shopping mood I’m in.

  14. At a party, the DJ suddenly changes the song – and it’s your song. What song would be playing?

    Right now, I’m in love with a couple of songs so here are a few.

    1. Love Me Like You Do by Ellie Goulding (I actually didn’t know this was in the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack and am a little angry. However, if I don’t think about it, it’s an amazing song as are all of Ellie’s songs.)
    2. Outside by Ellie Goulding (why is Harris’s name on it! He is not singing and shouldn’t be in the title!!)
    3. Dollhouse by Melanie Martinez (I absolutely love this song!)
  15. Pick out either a book you want turned into a film/TV show, or a film/TV show you want turned into a book.

    I would love My Life Next Door, The Truth About Forever, and I’ve Got Your Number turned into movies.

Let me know what you think and leave me a link to your posts if you participated!

Jackie

“Waiting On Wednesday” 5 – The Third Twin by C.J. Omololu


New+WoW
“Waiting on Wednesday” is a weekly meme hosted by that spotlights releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.
Today my WoW is The Third Twin by C.J. Omololu.
The Third Twin


Title: The Third Twin

Author: C.J. Omololu

Publication Date: February 28, 2015

Series: none

Synopsis:

Identical twins. Identical DNA. Identical suspects. It’s Pretty Little Liars meets Revenge in this edge-of-your-seat thriller with a shocking twist.

When they were little, Lexi and her identical twin, Ava, made up a third sister, Alicia. If something broke? Alicia did it. Cookies got eaten? Alicia’s guilty. Alicia was always to blame for everything. The game is all grown up now that the girls are seniors. They use Alicia as their cover to go out with boys who are hot but not exactly dating material. Boys they’d never, ever be with in real life.

Now one of the guys Alicia went out with has turned up dead, and Lexi wants to stop the game for good. As coincidences start piling up, Ava insists that if they follow the rules for being Alicia, everything will be fine. But when another boy is killed, the DNA evidence and surveillance photos point to only one suspect: Alicia. The girl who doesn’t exist. As she runs from the cops, Lexi has to find the truth before another boy is murdered. Because either Ava is a killer…or Alicia is real.


I first heard about this book when a blog tour was being announced. Unfortunately, i heard about it too late and was unable to participate. However, I was immediately intrigued by the summary and I simply must read it! I’ve been looking for a good mystery and this looks like the perfect fit.
If you have any mystery and cozy mystery recommendations, please share! Also, leave me a link to your WoW or tell me what you’re waiting on. 🙂
Jackie

Review: I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella


I've Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I first heard about this book from Heather of on Youtube. I know that she absolutely loves this book and all of Kinsella’s books so I was curious to see what they were about.

When I picked up I’ve Got Your Number, I thought it was going to be a silly, fluffy book with little meaning. I picked it up on a whim hoping it would get me out of my reading slump and am so glad I did.

I’ve Got Your Number isn’t just about an air-headed woman who’s about to marry someone and loses her ring. It’s about doing what’s right, love, finding oneself, and it’s about learning from, and teaching others.

From the beginning, the main character, PoppyWyatt is funny and relatable. I know I’m just a teenager and not getting married as far as I know, but her reaction to the situation seemed appropriate. I really liked how Kinsella added modern speech/texts to emphasize how characters were feeling. I never thought that the imojis took away from the story and depth the characters had.
As the characters bond with each other, they learn how to accept other people’s opinions and incorporate them into their own views thereby creating a story with more depth. Furthermore, the story demonstrates how chance encounters–even those we might not remember or those that seem insignificant–impact our daily lives. It also teaches that people shouldn’t rush into things. Lastly, and I know I keep coming back to this, it stresses the point that we can learn and teach one another.

Overall, I thought I’ve Got Your Number was the perfect book to get me out of my hang-over after My Life Next Door. I think the book’s perfect for anyone looking to read a fast, humorous book with a great message.

Review: How I Fall and How I Fly by Anne Elliot


How I fly (1)

Blog Tour Schedule

A two-book series by the bestselling author of Almost and Unmaking Hunter Kennedy.

How I fly

How I Fall by Anne Eliot

*WHAT IF YOU HAD AN IMPOSSIBLE CRUSH?*
Impossible because she’s Ellen Foster. The beautiful, smart, and possibly fragile photography-girl. You’re Cam Campbell. The guy who plays football 24/7 with no life. But what if during junior year, you decide to finally try for her phone number—until this glitter-crazed new girl ruins your plan. Worse, the girl is Irish, awkward, and insists you and Ellen should become best friends—with her! Only, you don’t want to be friends with a human tornado, and you think Ellen might need to stay a crush. This is because after one interaction you’ve discovered Ellen Foster really is fragile. Your problems and secrets are too big for anyone to understand.

*WHAT IF YOU COULDN’T RESIST?*
But what if the three of you wind up assigned to a group photography project, where rumors are already circling about the new girl being ridiculous? You know she’s nice but very alone, so you convince your crush to help protect the new girl. Suddenly, working on the project makes hanging out, texting, talking—and even high school—seem fun and completely normal when it’s anything but normal.

*WHAT IF YOU KISS?*
What if you kiss Ellen Foster and it’s perfect enough to make you believe in things you shouldn’t. You tell her secrets and share your dreams. You make the kinds of promises and create plans to be together that might be impossible to keep when you’re only sixteen and your parents control your entire future, but… WHAT IF YOU HURT HER?

 

Amazon

Praise for How I Fall

“How I Fall captures exactly how a high school crush feels. You can have endless long days—days that feel exactly the same—and then in one moment a little thing changes, a conversation finally happens, and suddenly there’s a new friend group formed where relationships are suddenly ‘on’! I loved this book (How I Fall) and I’ve already read the sequel, How I Fly as ARC. You will laugh, you will cry and you will fall so in love with Ellen and Cam’s story.” ~Becca H. Teen book blogger.

“Anne Eliot writes the sweetest first kisses. She also does those book boyfriends you can’t get out of your head. Cam Campbell in How I Fall doesn’t disappoint, nor does the awesome first kiss.” ~Judith, I Love YA Fiction, Blog

 

HOw I fallHow I Fly by Anne Eliot

*WHAT IF IT’S TIME TO MOVE ON…?*
Over six months after an accident that broke her legs as well as removed her boyfriend from her life—because Cam Campbell left town and dumped her—high school senior, Ellen Foster, wants to move past her broken heart. She’s off to attend a summer photography workshop at a real university along with her best friends. Ellen’s determined to find a new love—or at least a summer boyfriend. In the dorm, she meets Harrison Shaw. He’s a handsome photography student, a charmer who likes her, and a perfect way to forget her past.

*WHAT IF IT ALL GOES PERFECTLY…?*
Ellen thinks she has everything she wants. Her summer program couldn’t be better. She’s half in love with Harrison Shaw, and she’s going after her next scholarship. But when she kisses Harrison, she can only remember how Cam Campbell used kiss her better, sweeter, and how he used to make her feel like she could fly…

*WHAT IF SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT…?*
When Cam shows up at the university it’s a shock, especially to Ellen’s new boyfriend. Cam’s distant, different and very afraid to hurt Ellen again. He asks Ellen if they could be friends despite the past and how they’ve both changed and Ellen agrees. But after all they’ve been through, can Cam and Ellen ever be just friends?

*WHAT IF…?*

Amazon

 

add to goodreads

 

Anne EliotAuthor Anne Eliot

Anne Eliot is the author of the, How I Fall/How I Fly two book series, and bestselling, young adult teen issue romances, Almost and Unmaking Hunter Kennedy. She loves writing about teens who live outside the ordinary and she’s devoted to stories about teens who live outside the ordinary but who also get to find sweet first kisses and first loves.

Anne resides in Colorado with a very patient husband, two teens of her own whom she adores (an some teens near and far thanks to hosting many exchange students) who are all growing up too fast.

 

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Tumblr

 

 

25_Amazon_Paypal$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 2/25/15

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

 

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Review: Henge (Le Fay #1) by Realm Lovejoy


Henge
Title: Henge (Le Fay #1)
Author: Realm Lovejoy
Publication Date: November 11, 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy
Synopsis: Modern-day Camelot. Where knights no longer carry swords. Magic is dangerous. And those who seek control are not to be trusted.
Sixteen-year-old Morgan le Fay is a fire user. An ordinary girl with an extraordinary skill, she has the ability to create and command fire at will. Her dream is to become the Maven—the right hand of the future King Arthur. In the chance of a lifetime, Morgan is selected to join Arthur’s Round, an elite group of young magic users from which the new Maven will be chosen.
Along with the other fire, water, and wind users in Arthur’s Round, Morgan is rigorously trained and tested. The handsome Merlin, a brilliant water user, takes a particular interest in her. Is his friendship to be trusted, or is Merlin simply trying to win the position of Maven for himself? Among the many rivals Morgan faces is the current Maven, Mordred, who seems determined to see her fail.
But Morgan has a secret—years ago, her mother was executed for using fire magic, and Morgan’s desire for justice makes her more than ready to take on the challenge before her. Can she prevail in Camelot’s tests of survival and magic? Only time—and Morgan’s powerful fire, will tell.
Goodreads
Watch the trailer
Buy it on Amazon


Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
When I first started Henge, I was really disappointed. I felt that there was too much insta-love between two of the main characters. Usually, I don’t like insta-love in books, but can deal with them. However, I absolutely could not stand it in this book. First, the characters seemed flat and undeveloped which made it hard for me to understand why Morgan had mixed feelings for the other main character.
Furthermore, I thought that the plot of the book was a great and intriguing idea, but it fell flat. I was very happy and surprised by events and situations in the book. I thought that I was going to hate the book since I didn’t start really liking it until a few chapters in. However, I’m so happy I stuck with the book. Lovejoy’s vivid descriptions of events, places and things made the book memorable. Since I don’t know much about King Arthur and his knights, I liked that the author gave background and built the world. Her world building was not over the top or all at once which made the story easy to follow and enjoyable to read.
Overall, I thought Henge fell a little flat of my expectations, but it was a well planned story.


Giveaway:
Enter the giveaway here

Have you read this book? What did you think?
Jackie