The Start Of Me And You by Emery Lord

Goodreads Synopsis: Following her pitch-perfect debut Open Road Summer, Emery Lord pens another gorgeous story of best friends, new love, & second chances.

Brimming with heartfelt relationships and authentic high-school dynamics The Start of Me and You proves that it’s never too late for second chances.

It’s been a year since it happened—when Paige Hancock’s first boyfriend died in an accident. After shutting out the world for two years, Paige is finally ready for a second chance at high school . . . and she has a plan. First: Get her old crush, Ryan Chase, to date her—the perfect way to convince everyone she’s back to normal. Next: Join a club—simple, it’s high school after all. But when Ryan’s sweet, nerdy cousin, Max, moves to town and recruits Paige for the Quiz Bowl team (of all things!) her perfect plan is thrown for a serious loop. Will Paige be able to face her fears and finally open herself up to the life she was meant to live?

Commentary: I read The Start Of Me And You because it is the book of the month for the We The Book Dragon’s group on Goodreads. I’ve been telling myself to follow my resolutions by being more active on Goodreads groups, I’m trying! Anyways, this month’s choice was excellent!

The story begins with Paige, she is known as the girl whose boyfriend died. If I can sum what this story is about in one short sentence it would be this: A book about self discovery and learning to live once again. I enjoyed this story much more than I would have thought. I went into this book with medium expectations, I didn’t expect myself to love this book. But, I did! I really had a lot of fun reading the book. I even cried twice near the very end of the book.

Paige has a tough life. She keeps having nightmares about drowning and her parents are divorced, and the one person that she can be completely honest with, her grandmother, has Alzheimer’s. Luckily for Paige, she has a group of supportive friends that would protect her at all costs. Paige wants to start over again by the time she enters her junior year of high school. She writes down a list of what she wants to complete by the year.

Paige has always had a crush on Ryan Chase who happens to be one of the popular boys in school. Paige is absolutely smitten by him that she can’t speak coherently when he is around. When Paige learns that Ryan is single, she makes it her mission to date him. Just when fate seems to lead her to Ryan, she ends up striking up a friendship with Ryan’s cousin Max. In order to get closer to Ryan, Paige becomes friends with Max.

The friendship started because of shallowness, but soon Paige finds herself completely comfortable around Max. Max isn’t the type of guy that Paige is attracted to. Though Ryan is her crush, Max is much more involved in her life.

“Ryan Chase was my eighth-grade collage, aspirational and wide-eyed. But Max was the first bite of grilled cheese on a snowy day, the easy fit of my favorite jeans, that one old song that made it onto every playlist. Peanut-butter Girl Scout cookies instead of an ornate cake. Not glamorous or idealized or complicated. Just me.”

I really enjoyed reading The Start Of Me And You! It took me two days to finish this book! It’s the quickest book I’ve read. I connected with the characters. I loved the banter between Max and Paige. One of my favorite scenes in the book has to be when Paige and Max argue about Pride and Prejudice. Paige sees herself as an Elizabeth, while Max sees her more of Jane.

Here are my reasons why you should read The Start Of Me And You:

  • Seeing Max and Paige’s relationship grow – one of the most developed relationship in YA! They have a lot of cute moments. The ending of the book is so, so worth it.
  • Girl Power: Paige’s friends are amazing!! They help her out so much! They defend her, they love her. I like that they play a huge role in her life:

“In friendship we are all debtors. We all owe each other for a thousand small kindnesses, for little moments of grace in the chaos.”

  • If you’re looking for a cute story with not a lot of drama, then this one is perfect.
  • There are a couple sad moments that made me cry in this book. Bring out the tissues.

This book is amazing! I would love to see this book get adapted into a movie. I highly recommend reading this book!! Originally I was going to give it a 4.5 out of 5, but the more I marinated my whole reading experience, it was best to give it a perfect score. There isn’t anything that I would change about it.

Final Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

 

 

 

 

I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest: Book Review

It wasn’t the beginning Libby and May had ever imagined. But then again, they’d never given the princess a beginning, had they? They’d only told her adventures going forward from the time she picked up her sword, fighting bad guys and monsters in her little red Chucks. They’d made up tales of daring and danger, but all those tales happened after she’d earned her name and her crown.

☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆ Goodreads Synopsis: Best friends, big fans, a mysterious webcomic, and a long-lost girl collide in this riveting novel, perfect for fans of both Cory Doctorow and Sarah Dessen; illustrated throughout with comics.

Once upon a time, two best friends created a princess together. Libby drew the pictures, May wrote the tales, and their heroine, Princess X, slayed all the dragons and scaled all the mountains their imaginations could conjure.

Once upon a few years later, Libby was in the car with her mom, driving across the Ballard Bridge on a rainy night. When the car went over the side, Libby passed away, and Princess X died with her.

Once upon a now: May is sixteen and lonely, wandering the streets of Seattle, when she sees a sticker slapped in a corner window.

Princess X? 

When May looks around, she sees the Princess everywhere: Stickers. Patches. Graffiti. There’s an entire underground culture, focused around a webcomic at IAmPrincessX.com. The more May explores the webcomic, the more she sees disturbing similarities between Libby’s story and Princess X online. And that means that only one person could have started this phenomenon—her best friend, Libby, who lives.

Commentary: The story starts off immediately with the death of Libby, May’s best friend and co-creator of Princess X. I would have liked this story a bit more if the author had developed May and Libby more. I wanted more of May and Libby’s friendship or at least more chapters about the original Princess X comics. 

Anyways, May’s parents are divorced and she only lives in Seattle during the summer with her father. Three years after Libby’s “death”, she finds a Princess X poster. She believes that Libby is alive once she sees that poster and the mystery begins to unfold. o(^▽^)o

Though May has social media accounts and knows how to use the internet, she is not tech savvy, which is a bit ironic. One day her computer doesn’t turn on and she hires Trick to help her fix her computer. She just needed to charge her computer…Anyways; Trick is a bit more developed than the other characters. Trick is a genius when in comes to computers, but lost a scholarship to University because of his jealousy and foolishness. He is in desperate need of money, but instead of focusing on himself and trying to fix his problem, he decides to help May. Though he doesn’t believe her at first.

By the way, there is no romance in this book! Trick and May do not fall for each other; rather they become good friends because of Princess X. If there was a romance in this book, I would have given it a lower score. What I really like about I Am Princess X is that it focuses on true friendship. May was willing to endure any hardship to find the whereabouts of Libby. This book is definitely fun. 

My favorite character had to be Jackdaw, I found him to be the most interesting character from the group of friends. I did like how he got a backstory. I really liked how he would playfully scold Trick. By the way, Jackdaw is another computer genius. .+:。(ノ・ω・)ノ゙

The villain was psychotic. I did feel slightly sorry for him, but at the same time I was scared of him. There are some moments that had were creepy in the book. The Needleman needed professional help and counseling. (∗❛ั௦❛ั∗) And I really liked the mystery and suspense because it did work well for this book. I loved the quest for the four keys and I love how Princess X web comic was more than just a comic. It was a sign for May to look for Libby. It was their way of finding each other. Even though Princess X was becoming a popular web comic, I can understand why May never found out about it since she lives mostly in Atlanta with her mother. I do believe that the Princess X was popular locally.

Though there are some things that did bother me with the book. First of all, why didn’t the police do a DNA check when they found the Libby’s “body’? Why?! 。゚( ゚இ‸இ゚)゚。 Secondly, the police was really useless in this novel. May and Trick were far more useful than the police. I would have liked it if May was more developed since she is the main protagonist of the book. I really wanted this book to be longer, and it is under 300 pages. Lastly, I would have liked to have read some of May’s writings for Princess X since May was the writer in the duo while Libby was the artist.

I recommend not buying this book for Kindle just because the font is really small. It’s more of a PDF rather than your typical eBook. In this case, it’s better to have the physical copy. Other than that, this book is standalone. It did end on a bittersweet note. I just wished there were more chapters of the Princess X graphic novel. The last page was really adorable and I liked it. Do I recommend this book? Yes, it is a fun read, but I think this book is more middle grade rather than young adult. 

Final Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ (3.5) ☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell: Book Review

Just when you think you’re having a scene without Simon, he drops in to remind you that everyone else is a supporting character in his catastrophe.

☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆ Goodreads Synopsis: Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen.

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story—but far, far more monsters.

Commentary: When I first heard about Carry On getting published, I was a bit worried about it. I was not a big fan of the Simon chapters in Fangirl. For some reason, I thought she was going to write as Gemma T. Leslie (author of the Simon Snow series), but this book is Rainbow Rowell’s take on Simon Snow. I really enjoy reading Rainbow Rowell’s works, but I was hesitant to read Carry On. I waited for reviews of the book and all I can say is that this book is everywhere. Seriously. Almost everyone I follow on Booktube or Goodreads gave Carry On a five out of five. I did enjoy the book, don’t get me wrong, but I felt it a bit lacking. ₍₍ ◟(•ૅ ॄ •ૅ๑)◞ ₎₎

First of all, I enjoyed the romance between Baz and Simon. The romance was absolutely perfect. Simon and Baz really were equally matched. I love the build up of their relationship, but I would have liked it more if there were flashbacks of Baz falling for Simon. Initially, I thought Simon was going to be my favorite character, he is supposed to be the fictional Harry Potter. Simon Snow was extremely angsty and stubborn, he can’t control his power like the others. I did not like him as much as I liked Penelope and Baz. I really loved Penelope!! I enjoyed her parts of the book. I like how supportive she was of Simon’s relationship with Baz and how she didn’t “hate” Agatha just because Simon and Agatha broke up.

Also, I loved the friendship between Simon, Penny, and Baz. Agatha was not really included in the book. She was just there compared to the other characters. I wished she were more involved with her circle of friends, but the breakup made everything awkward for her. She wanted to live her life with nonmagical people. She was the one to get away from everything. Luckily for her, she gets a happy ending. ~(^з^)-☆

The Mage was the most interesting character to me. I knew he was a shady from the moment he was introduced. There was something about him that was off. I do respect the reforms he did for the school such as allowing everyone with magical abilities to attend Watford. It used to be a school for the elite before he became headmaster. Other than that, he is a bit of a maniac. He is obsessed with the prophecy of the greatest mage. He must have been really charismatic for Lucy to stay with him. He also isolated himself and Lucy from society, if that’s not a sign of a madman, then I don’t know what is. He also used Lucy, he wanted their child to become The Chosen One. He also abandoned Simon, and never told him that he was his father. He also made a deal with the vampires to attack Watford. I can’t forget to mention how he made his men raid other wizards. I really did not like the Mage. He did get what he deserved in the end. (ꐦ°᷄д°᷅)

To be honest, I don’t understand why the book was divided into four parts. I found it really unnecessary. Also, the first 180 pages were hard were dragging. I did consider dropping this book, but I didn’t want to fail my November tbr. Everything becomes more exciting once you keep reading. Now, I felt as if I missed out on an experience. I would have loved to read more about Simon Snow’s world. I would have loved if there were more books, and it doesn’t seem that there will be a sequel. I know that there are several points of view in this book, but it will all make sense near the end of the book. The ending was satisfying for me. I really did not expect that ending. Why couldn’t Simon Snow about his parents! That part made me upset. I thought he was going to find out the identity of his parents at least, but that did not happen!! (ꐦ ಠ皿ಠ )

Compared to her other works, I did not enjoy Carry On as much as I enjoyed Fangirl and Eleanor and Park. Even though this book was not for me, I will still recommend it because it had fun moments, and I did like the silly spells as well. The reason why I give this book a 3.5 is because exciting, but it was still missing a certain something. Would I reread this? I don’t think so.  ต( ິᵒ̴̶̷̤ ﻌ ᵒ̴̶̷̤ )ິ ♬

Final Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆

Hello, I Love You by Katie M Stout: Book Review

Goodreads Synopsis: A teen escapes to a boarding school abroad and falls for a Korean pop star in this fun and fresh romantic novel in the vein of Anna and the French Kiss.

Grace Wilde is running—from the multi-million dollar mansion her record producer father bought, the famous older brother who’s topped the country music charts five years in a row, and the mother who blames her for her brother’s breakdown. Grace escapes to the farthest place from home she can think of, a boarding school in Korea, hoping for a fresh start.

She wants nothing to do with music, but when her roommate Sophie’s twin brother Jason turns out to be the newest Korean pop music superstar, Grace is thrust back into the world of fame. She can’t stand Jason, whose celebrity status is only outmatched by his oversized ego, but they form a tenuous alliance for the sake of her friendship with Sophie. As the months go by and Grace adjusts to her new life in Korea, even she can’t deny the sparks flying between her and the KPOP idol.

Soon, Grace realizes that her feelings for Jason threaten her promise to herself that she’ll leave behind the music industry that destroyed her family. But can Grace ignore her attraction to Jason and her undeniable pull of the music she was born to write? Sweet, fun, and romantic, this young adult novel explores what it means to experience first love and discover who you really are in the process.

Commentary: When I first about this book, I immediately put in on my to be read list. I really love KPOP and I thought it was going to be super interesting!! Now, I had mixed feelings about the book before I got it. It could have been great or a train wreck. Well, this book was a bit of a train wreck for me. Grace Wilde, the main protagonist, was so annoying!! She made Americans look bad! She was quite nosy, she wanted to know everything personal about the secondary characters, it’s like she has never heard of privacy…and insensitive about Korean culture. First of all, she didn’t really want to go to South Korea. She chose the first school according to Google results. If she really wanted to get away from her family, she should have chosen a place where she wanted to go to…that’s one of my main problems with this book. She could have at least been a bit more enthusiastic about her stay there, but no. Also, I thought Jason Bae was going to be in a Korean pop group, but that wasn’t the case. He was in a band, and Grace was so suprised that Koreans play instruments like Westerners. Secondly, I don’t think this book is for any KPOP fan at all. There weren’t really any references to KPOP…The book mainly focused on the developing love-hate relationship between Jason and Grace. I was very disappointed because this book was really hyped up. I felt sorry for Jason since there was a lot of miscommunication between he and Grace. Grace was mostly angry and quite annoying, I don’t know how he and his band member fell for her.  She constantly got angry at Jason…and overreacted to so many situations…I don’t know how I even finished the book. I also felt that the second guy was a bit pointless. I feel that the author tried to create drama between the characters, but I believe that it didn’t work since Grace was too distracted by Jason and how hot he was. The secondary characters were fun. I really like Sophie, Jason’s twin. She was really nice and helpful to Grace. I would have loved if Grace’s sister, Jane, were the protagonist! It would have made this book a little more readable. In addition, the synopsis says that Grace wanted to get away from the music industry, but that’s a lie. She was willing to help out Jason out with his song. Whoever wrote the synopsis should rewrite because it fooled me! The book title is based off The Door’s song, Hello I Love You. Lastly, I really couldn’t stand Grace. She was snobby and wasn’t really willing to learn in her new environment. Was the book worth the price? No, I found it to be a tad expensive for a meh book. Would I recommend it for my fellow KPOP fans? Absolutely not. I would rather read KPOP fanfictions on Wattpad.

Final Rating: ⭐️⭐️ (1.5)