July Book Round Up

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Wow! This month just went by really fast for me.  I was not able to read all the books I intended to read for the month of July. But I read 7 books, so that’s really a big accomplishment for me. Here are my reviews for these 7 books.

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“She wasn’t broken. She saw and interacted with the world in a different way, but that was her. She could change her actions, change her words, change her appearance, but she couldn’t change the root of herself.”

This is one of the books I picked for my June book of the month from my BOTM subscription box. I read the book synopsis before choosing this book and liked it. But what intrigues me the most was that the main character has Asperger’s syndrome or “high functioning autism”. Therefore, she does not know how to handle an intimate relationship. And French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. So after a co-worker suggested she needs practice, she came to a conclusion that she needs to hire a professional. A professional that can help her with her sex life.

This is a debut novel by Helen Hoang and it’s well written. The topic of autism, which our main heroine is going through, was definitely well researched.

I did not realize the gender-swapped “Pretty Woman” similarity until I was in the middle of the book. I admit that was a nice twist and quite refreshing. My only complaint was the fact that the ending seemed so rush.

Overall, it’s a 3.5 for me. If you want a nice romance book to read, something light and not heavy, I would highly recommend this book to you.

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And one will come to end us,
And one will bring us fall.
Let the greatest power of powers reign,
May it save us all.

The first part of this book was so Harry Potter like for me. I was a little discouraged but I decided to continue reading it, and I’m so glad I did.

The story started to get more fascinating when the dignified Baz finally showed up in Book 2. Reading Baz POV, most especially in chapter 32 changed the whole dynamic of the story for me. The story started to grow on me and I stopped comparing it to JK Rowling’s HP. Yes, Simon, Baz, Penelope, and Agatha go to a Wizard school that sounds like Hogwarts (school is called “Watford”). But that’s where the resemblance ends: “The Mage” (Davy) is definitely not Dumbledore; Baz is not Malfoy (Baz is a vampire!); Penelope is not Hermoine; Agatha is too girly to be Ron so there’s no comparison at all (LOL); and Simon is definitely not Harry Potter.

So when I finally realize that this book is not another wannabe HP book, I began to enjoy it more. And I really loved how Rainbow Rowell wrote the “spells”. The songs, rhymes, children’s rhymes or even a TV commercial jingle made into spells was unique and hilarious. My most favorite spells were: “Come out, come out, wherever you are; “Ladybird, Ladybird, fly away home…”; “Have a break, have a Kit-Kat”, “Twinkle, twinkle little star”. I giggled reading it most especially when the Mage chanted the Bohemian Rhapsody – “Carry on, carry on…”

I’ve read other books written by Ms. Rowell but I truly enjoyed this book much more. The LGBTQ reference is definitely a plus. And I love the character development of this story. Although, I kind of guessed who the real villian is (I’ve read too many thriller books) but nevertheless the plot twist and the ending was still amazing. I can’t wait to read the sequel and find out what will happen to Simon, Baz and Penelope. I rate this 4 stars.

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I have posted a review of this book so you can check it out here.

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I have posted a review of this book so you can check it out here.

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** SPOILER ALERT ** The author said this book is Black Panther but with magic. I totally disagree, the Marvel Comics’ property, Black Panther, is a story about a newly crowned king whose problems include making a decision to whether to reveal that his presently thought of third-world country for centuries to present day first world as not just equals but also vastly, technologically advanced and ruling a kingdom that is divided internally by ideology and personal affairs. The only similarity that exists between Black Panther and Children of Blood & Bone is that they are both about societies governed by philosophies and ideologies of African descent and the general populations of both are African.

CBB is a story about Zelie, who lost her mother when she was a little girl during an eradication of magical powers of all magi in their lands. This was ordered by Orisha’s evil king, Saran. Zelie met Princess Amari who decides to rebel against her father after she saw him killing her magi handmaiden and best friend. She stole the magical scroll from her father and run away. So then Zelie, Amari, her huge bull-horned lion and nonmagical older brother Tzain set out to restore the magic in their world. Zelie’s power was restored with an important person they met along the way. Zelie happens to be a reaper, power to command the spirits of the dead. They have a deadline they need to meet before it is too late to restore the magic in their world. And on top of that, they were pursued by Prince Inan. Prince Inan has his own issues: he was torn between doing the right thing and fulfilling his duty to his nation and to his father or to give in to his magical powers. Inan’s magical power is that he can read and control minds and even invade dreams, a power he knows will be his demise if his father founds out.

The book is really long (500 plus pages) and the sad thing is the fact that it is so repetitive. The novel is narrated by three characters Zelie, Amari and, Inan. What really irritates me is that they’re constantly reiterating or rehashing events that were stated or happened pages before. I decided to skim through the rest of the book after I read 66% of it.

I gave this 3 out of 5.

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My favorite quote from this book: “But Molly’s resilience, her unwillingness to submit to expectations placed upon her at the time. And her unwavering belief in herself and the girls who worked for her have taught me that if you find something you love, you fight for it with everything you’ve got. No regrets “ 

If you’re looking for a book that you can take to the beach or to the pool this summer, this book is perfect for you. It’s a perfect beach book, light and easy to read. Honestly, reading this made me want to go out and buy a pint or even a bucket of ice cream. LOL!

I picked up this book after reading a high intensity adventure fantasy. And this book was perfect, if I’m not working I would have finished reading this book in one sitting

Amelia started off her summer getting ready to be the “Head Girl” of Meade Creamery, she has been dreaming of becoming a Head Girl ever since she started working at Meade Creamery four years ago. And being a Head Girl is an honor bestowed by the owner Molly Meade to a girl she believes is worthy. Amelia is also excited to work with her best friend Cate for the last time before they head off to college. But the perfect summer Amelia dreams of started to derail when something tragic happened to Molly Meade. Then, Grady Meade, Molly’s great grand nephew took over the management of Meade Creamery. Slowly everything started to fell apart, including her friendsip with Cate. But Amelia also finds love and learned more about handling business.

I like the plot twist of this book and the little life lessons in between most especially about managing a small business. The business decisions and failures actually made the story much more realistic to me. This is the second book I read from this author and I got to admit I kinda like it.

I gave it 4 out of 5. The plot was kinda slow in the first few chapters but it picked up and loved how this book ended, definitely inspiring.

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“What most people don’t understand, is that when you’re a kid and you lose someone you love, you feel like you’ve been exiled to another planet, ~~Planet Grief~~.” 

Thanks to Library Things and Orca Books Publishing for the free paperback ARC copy in exchange for my honest review.

This book is only about 200 pages and I could have easily read it in one sitting, if I don’t have work. Anyway, this is a Middle Grader – contemporary book with two POV, Christopher and Abby.

Both Christopher and Abby lost a parent and was not really interested to go to this weekend Grief Retreat. Abby would rather go to her soccer practice and Christopher do not want to talk about his father’s death with other people. But they get to meet other kids who had gone through same lost as they have experienced. Kids like: Gustavo who had been doing this retreat for 3 years in a row and is now Eugene’s (instructor/counselor) assistant; Gustavo’s adorable younger sister Camila; quiet Antione; mysterious and gothic Felicia; and their instructor/counselor Eugene.

The story mostly revolved within this two-day retreat. The plot development, the plot twist and characters are all amazing. You can easily emphatized with these kids and admire their maturity. I have experienced a lost but not at a young age. I just wanted to reach out and hug them all. It is a poignant story and I loved how these kids learned and developed slowly as they faced and deal with their grief.

The author Monique Polak, definitely researched this topic and it is very well written. My only problem is about the Felicia part, I’m just thinking that in a retreat like this, people usually checked ID’s for security purposes so the situation regarding Felicia is kinda not plausible for me. But other than that it’s definitely a great story. I give this 4 out of 5. I definitely recommend people to buy this book when it comes out on Sept. 2018.

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That’s it for this MONTH, my dear readers. Please like, comment, and follow this blog for more book updates. Have a great week, everyone.

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