Monday, July 11, 2016

Review: The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry





This book is a little piece of home for me.

Which is funny, considering it takes place halfway across the country and doesn't really have much to do with my life.  After all, I haven't had visions of Grandmother every morning, when she tells me cryptic things and stories about creation and magic.

But books aren't beloved because they're all about what has happened to you.  They're beloved because soul.  Because that place inside of you that resonates so deeply with an idea or statement or Truth or kind of love, even if you haven't experienced the plot firsthand.  Even if you don't battle dragons (or ride them) or fall in love with the boy next door or go to school abroad.  You just...connect.

That's what TLTSTW is to me.

Of course, that being said, there were little things in it that relate to me and my life: I'm an INFJ and so is Nat, and her dad reminded me so much of my own dad.  These facts only made the book more dear to me.  And definitely added to what tethers my soul to this book.

And I'm serious when I say I loved everything about it.

  • First off: EMILY HENRY'S WRITING IS A GIFT FROM GOD.  That is all I can even say about it because ????? What are words, even???? 
  • The plot is glorious and complicated and crazy.  It blew my mind.  You might have to read the last pages two times but that's only because they're brilliant and a;lksdjf;laskdjf;lkasjdf *fangirling overload*
  • The story is incredible, about sacrifice and all kinds of love and magic in the little things and mystery in the big things and believing even when it's hard and living your life for love. DO YOU NEED ANY OTHER REASON TO READ THIS BOOK???
  • And the characters....oh they were delightful.  They were rich and easy to relate to, and there were so many realistic hardships woven into the magic that I couldn't help but feel for everyone, even when some people made terrible mistakes.
  • The romance went a little fast for me at first, but because of the magic and amazing character development, I was able to let it slide easily.  And their chemistry was SO STRONG.  Like, yes please.  Give me Beau.  I want him.  I love him.  LET ME LOVE HIM.

So, if you haven't read this book yet, I highly recommend you do that.  Buy it at Barnes and Noble or Amazon or The Book Depository and cry over its perfection like I did.  If this review resonates with you, and you like magical realism and strange happenings and hot summer nostalgia, then you will love the book.  I promise.  And if you're not sold yet (or even if you are), go follow Emily on Twitter because she rocks and you will not regret her wit and humor.

SYNOPSIS

Natalie Cleary must risk her future and leap blindly into a vast unknown for the chance to build a new world with the boy she loves. 

Natalie’s last summer in her small Kentucky hometown is off to a magical start... until she starts seeing the “wrong things.” They’re just momentary glimpses at first—her front door is red instead of its usual green, there’s a pre-school where the garden store should be. But then her whole town disappears for hours, fading away into rolling hills and grazing buffalo, and Nat knows something isn’t right.

That’s when she gets a visit from the kind but mysterious apparition she calls “Grandmother,” who tells her: “You have three months to save him.” The next night, under the stadium lights of the high school football field, she meets a beautiful boy named Beau, and it’s as if time just stops and nothing exists. Nothing, except Natalie and Beau.

Emily Henry’s stunning debut novel is Friday Night Lights meets The Time Traveler’s Wife, and perfectly captures those bittersweet months after high school, when we dream not only of the future, but of all the roads and paths we’ve left untaken.
CONTENT

Some brief, strong language and kissing.  Recommended 15+

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Review: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab


Buckle up, you guys, because this review is about to get deep.  Why?  This Savage Song is deep.  Like.  THIS BOOK.  Oh wow, seriously, it is gorgeous.  I've loved Victoria Schwab for a while, liked her for even longer, and I'm so happy to be a part of pushing her books on everyone else, because they are just so beautiful.

Now, before I get to the good stuff, I did have a few issues.  The beginning, while entirely enjoyable, is a little confusing.  I'm not the only one who felt this way, either, according to a few of my friends who also read ARCs.  There was a lot going on but not a whole lot of information to fill in the gaps.  The characters, who were great independently, had choppy interactions with family members and friends.  A lot of things went unsaid that I felt needed to be said.  My biggest problem with this is that thought never changed.  Usually when an author withholds information from you, they're doing it for a really really excellent reason.  But I felt like all of these things could have at least been hinted at earlier in the novel to give some clarity, and then further discussed later.

EVEN SO

Once I got passed the 200 page mark, a lot of things fell into place.  And I loved what I read.  A 3-star beginning suddenly veered into a 5-star ending, and for me that's the difference between "forgettable" and "incredible".  Which is a big deal for me, personally.  But this book really caught me and MADE ME FEEL DEEPLY.  POWERFULLY.

There are so many themes in this book.  Love, loyalty, true friendship - among other things.  Oh, and THERE IS NO ROMANCE, which gives page time to all the other stuff we don't get as often as romance.  Not that romance isn't amazing - I'm obviously a sucker for all kinds of love stories and I obsess over book boyfriends - but it is nice to see the focus on things that are equally important.  Especially in a world of monsters.  Especially where your brother, sister, father, mother, sibling, best friend could turn on you, could become a thing, a creature, you don't recognize.

Everything happening led up to an epic ending, with so much running and fear and terrifying life-threatening encounters.  These characters were stripped down to their bare selves and forced to confront the ugly, and it was really really beautiful.  Harsh, like the dystopian world they live in, but wow.  It was what made me love the book as much as I did at the end.

And the involvement of music.  You guys.  My heart broke a little over how much I loved that.  August's character arc and his connection to music really dug deep for me.

So yes, I liked the action and adventure and world building and the monster system Schwab created and the politics.  It was all utterly fascinating.  But all that took a backseat when I really felt a powerful connection between the characters, and I felt their trials on a personal level.  Their hardships were mine; their scars were mine; their futures were mine.  And that's what makes this book so excellent and so very worthy of reading.

To conclude, if you haven't bought a copy yet, I recommend you do so immediately.  Read this book, and love it, and make sure you thank Victoria for writing it.  She deserves all the love.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository | Wordery

SYNOPSIS

There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwaba young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.
CONTENT

Some brief, strong language.  Recommended 13+

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Mini Review: Also Known As by Robin Benway


It's been a while since I read this book, but I honestly keep thinking back to it and how cute it was!  I loved Maggie the whole time.  Her voice was so distinct and adorable and easy to relate to.  She was awkward and normal and I just adored that about her.  She was also smart....and smart girls in fiction are my kind of girls!

So there was mystery and intrigue, and it was all well done...but there was romance, too!  (And we all know I'm a romance lover.)  It was all so cute and happy and squeal-y.  I remember there was one scene were I kind of rolled my eyes (I don't even remember what it was at this point, so it must have been relatively unimportant in the grand scheme of things) but for the most part I was swooning!

I genuinely enjoyed this book and the spy action it brought to my life, so I will definitely be continuing on to the second book, GOING ROGUE.  I also adore Robin.  I met her at a Sarah J Maas event two years ago and she was such a dream to talk to!  Very encouraging and lovely.  I highly recommend reading her books if you want something light and funny and sweet.
SYNOPSIS

Which is more dangerous: being an international spy... or surviving high school?

Maggie Silver has never minded her unusual life. Cracking safes for the world's premier spy organization and traveling the world with her insanely cool parents definitely beat high school and the accompanying cliques, bad lunches, and frustratingly simple locker combinations. (If it's three digits, why bother locking it at all?)

But when Maggie and her parents are sent to New York City for her first solo assignment, her world is transformed. Suddenly, she's attending a private school with hundreds of "mean girl" wannabes, trying to avoid the temptation to hack the school's elementary security system, and working to befriend the aggravatingly cute son of a potential national security threat... all while trying not to blow her cover.

From the hilarious and poignant author of Audrey, Wait! comes a fast-paced caper that proves that even the world's greatest spies don't have a mission plan for love.
 
CONTENT

Totally clean!


Monday, February 15, 2016

CELEBRATE 500 GIVEAWAY (INT)

GUYS GUESS WHAT

YEARNING TO READ NOW HAS 500 GFC FOLLOWERS

AND 1,000 TWITTER FOLLOWERS

THIS IS SUCH EXCEPTIONAL NEWS AND I JUST

*FLAILS*

*RUNS AROUND*

*FLAILS SOME MORE*

So of course because I love you guys so much, I want to host a giveaway.  There will be two winners, and each will get to choose a 2016 release from Amazon or TBD.  Giveaway is INT!

Two rules:
1. You must be 13+ to enter
and
2.  You must follow Yearning to Read via GFC or email.  I will be checking so make sure to choose one or both of the options in the Rafflecopter form below!

Ready for this, dudes??  Look at all these books that you could possibly win (and even more than this)!!!  (These are just some of my favorite covers of the year so far.  Aren't they delicious??)


So go on, my pretties, and enter the lovely giveaway!  I love you all!!
XOXO

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater


This review isn't going to be very long (...I say as I start it; I might be lying) because I feel like that would be a waste of words.  This book is....everything.  So much of it is me.  The same way so much of TRC is me.  I feel like I have a certain soul connection with everything Maggie writes, in a way that breaks me into tiny little pieces.

THE SCORPIO RACES is melancholy.  It is slow-moving and tense.  (Like the Trojan War happening in a pool of molasses, okay?)  It's beautiful, in an aching, desperate sort of way.  In a way that shouts into the void, "I exist."  It reminds me of running in the rain, and daydreaming, and feeling like the world's going to end unless I do something right this second.

It is a weird book, too.  Horses that come out of the water and eat people -- yeah, basically unheard of.  Thanks, Welsh mythology, the thing I never knew I needed until Maggie's books existed.  It was right up my alley with its weird, making me so very happy that it exists.

It had the most delightful slow-burn romance that sat on the back-burner for almost the whole book (AND YET STILL MANAGED TO BE SO INTENSE AND EMOTIONAL???) and the characters were delightful. Sean was moody and passionate, and Puck was wild and passionate.  That passion, growing between them for the things they both loved, drew me in instantly and made me love them.  Good or bad characters make or break a book for me, and these made the book.  100%.

So, do I think you should read THE SCORPIO RACES?  I'm not entirely sure, actually.  It is weird, like I said.  And I don't think it's for everyone (whereas I would actually throw all of Maggie's other books at literally everyone).  But if for one second you think, based on the descriptions above, that you would enjoy this book in the slightest.....do it.  Do it right now.  Buy it this instant.  Go to your library and rent it.  Get an ebook.  DO THE THING.  Because it is a mighty book, and it deserves to be read by those who will love and appreciate it.  It's a soul-book, you know?  I hope it impacts you as powerfully as it impacted me.

So what about you?  Have you read THE SCORPIO RACES?  I can't wait to hear all your thoughts in the comments!

(And yeah...so much for a short review. HA!)
SYNOPSIS

It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.

At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.

Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.
CONTENT

Clean!