murder

Pretty Baby by Mary Kubica: Book Review

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THE DETAILS:

Book: Pretty  Baby

Authors: Mary Kubica

Pages: 370

Read: 4th July 2016

Rating: 3.98/5 Stars


GOODREADS SUMMARY:

She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can’t get the girl out of her head…

Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family’s objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.

Heidi spends the next few days helping Willow get back on her feet, but as clues into Willow’s past begin to surface, Heidi is forced to decide how far she’s willing to go to help a stranger. What starts as an act of kindness quickly spirals into a story far more twisted than anyone could have anticipated.


REVIEW:

Plot: 3.89/5

Characters: 5/5

Writing: 4/5

“Momma used to say, ‘We don’t have much, but at least we have each other.’ And then one day, we didn’t even have that much.”

I have never been more confused about a book, or what to even write in a review.

This novel has me completely dumbstruck on what to think upon finishing it, I mean, I finished it at 2am, it’s now 4pm and I still don’t know what to make of it.

What I do know is that I really enjoyed this book, what I’m not so sure of is the point of it? I don’t know if it was the fact that this book had no real climax, or perhaps in all my crazy theories I managed to guess most of the plot points and so it wasn’t surprising for me.

But was there really a point to it? I mean, was what happened with Heidi meant to be the crazy twist? Because I saw that coming from page 1, oh the confusion. I even searched online and read other reviews to try and see what other people made of the ending.

Anyway, despite all this, I still really enjoyed this book. It held my attention the entire time I was reading it, even if not much actually happened throughout the novel. In terms of plot development, was there even any? I’m not sure, oh no, not going back to the confusion…

Characters:
We really didn’t get closure on any of the characters at all, it simply felt like there was a depressing and abrupt end to every character arc. I kind of like that it didn’t turn out all sunshine and rainbows but I’m left guessing on so many levels.

Zoe: Why, whyyy, why did we not get a deeper look into this girls mind. She is the character that intrigued me perhaps the most, and I felt like there was so much more that could’ve been explored through Zoe, and about her struggles that were so evidently there.

Chris: I really liked this guy, I liked his POV, and just him in general. I loved his character development too, and the way that he kind of found a lot of meaning to his life towards the end.

Heidi: Ummm, yeah, not sure about where to go with this one without spoilers. I always thought she was weird, and definitely predicted her ending, I’ll just say that.

Willow: She and her story interested me, and learning all about her back-story and life was both intriguing and depressing. I don’t particularly like her though, and she kind of falls in the same bucket as Heidi for me. I can appreciate the horrible life she’s had though, oh how that would be just uh no.

Overall Thoughts:
I loved having the different POV chapters throughout the novel, I thought that was a great touch. To be honest, if I was in one of those characters heads for the entire book I would’ve gone crazy.

I saw everything and every character so vividly, and honestly it felt like the book was so short even with the 370 pages, and even though it took me a little while to read.

Although I’m still unsure of the point of this novel, as you may be aware of by now… I really really liked it. It was a great (and slightly strange) psychological thriller that I would recommend if you’re okay with enticing yet *looks up synonyms for confusing* perplexing stories.

I just know this one’s going to stay with me for a very long time, what a ride.

That’s all,

Kate :)

Where have I been? UPDATE

Ummm, hello lovely devoted blog reader who has obviously stuck by me through my extremely varying posts lately. I appreciate you, thank you.

It has now been 3 months since I drafted this post, yes 3 months since I was actually going to post my where have I been schpeal. That’s pretty ironic. But here it is…

First of all, I’d like to apologize for my lack of posts on this platform, even though there’s been around 1-2 posts a month, so I haven’t been completely awol, that’s not good enough to me. Basically, the reason I have been so absent from everything this year is because I’m in my last year of schooling! (cue the party) I’m so excited for that to be done with on November 9th when I finish my last exam (squeals), and then I’ll be annoying all of you with a lot more weird and whacky content. *5o people unfollow right now*

Please stay… hahaha

I miss being able to have the time to sit down and really focus on writing a blog post (the only reason I’m able to do it right now is because I’m on a 2 week break). I also miss having time to be able to take pictures for TheBookGram, which if you’re reading this, I’m guessing is probably where you came from. I haven’t been neglecting that as much as this, but still haven’t been putting out as much as I’d like.

One more thing, I really miss reading. Reading has been a rather foreign concept for me this year. Whenever I’m not super busy with study, I’m usually so tired that I end up watching TV shows, which is in no way a bad thing because that is hugely another passion of mine that has really grown this year. But I wish I read more. I guess it’s no

I guess it’s no ones fault but my own, maybe it’s  schools fault a little though, or a lot.  Reading rarely occurs now without stressful thoughts appearing in my mind that makes me unable to concentrate on what I’m reading. I think that’s why Harry Potter has been such a prominent thing in my life lately, I mean, reading the books for the first time in my last year of schooling is pretty cool.

I just can’t wait to be able to do things guilt free again, and never have to worry about school, or the things that come with it ever again. I’m also kinda excited to try and start creative writing more, and maybe share my stories with you guys.
I apologize for this being a sort of rant-filled update, but hey, if you read this far, I applaud you!

For now, I just want to say thank you so, so much to those of you who have stuck by me through my strange content schedule, etc. I appreciate you all so much, and honestly am so excited to be able to join in more with the community towards the end of the year.

November 9, 4:15 pm, I’m coming for you with everything I have.

Until next time,

Kate XOXO

 

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince: BOOK REVIEW

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THE DETAILS:

Book: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

Authors: J.K. Rowling

Pages: 542

Read: 19th June, 2016

Rating: 5/5 Stars


GOODREADS SUMMARY:

As the Dark Lord’s sinister forces amass, a spirit of gloom and fear is sweeping the land. Harry Potter waits nervously in his bedroom at the Dursleys’ for Professor Dumbledore to arrive. One of the last times he saw the Headmaster was in a fierce duel with Voldemort at the Ministry of Magic. Why is the Professor coming to visit him now? What is it that cannot wait until Harry returns to Hogwarts? In his sixth year, Harry will discover the secret behind the Half-Blood Prince, as Professor Dumbledore prepares him to face his destiny …


REVIEW:

Plot: 5/5

Characters: 5/5

Writing: 5/5

“I am not worried, Harry,” said Dumbledore, his voice a little stronger despite the freezing water. “I am with you.”

The Half Blood Prince is yet another incredible installment in the Harry Potter series, but you all knew that already. It may be my favourite so far, in fact yes I believe it is, even though the emotions are so real right now. (I know I said Order was my favourite so far, but this one has overtaken it)

I once again, loved every minute of reading this. It was perfect, and also had me lol’ing throughout the whole thing..eh, mostly. not the end.
The school and classes scenes were also amazing, that’s weirdly one of the things I love most about these books. Hogwarts just being Hogwarts.

If I’m being honest, weirdly again, the Quidditch scenes sometimes become a little tedious to me sometimes, but I even loved those in this book, they were just so funny. Thankyou Liquid Luck. (that was amazing, hahaha) The Apparition lessons were also a great laugh!

J.K. Rowling is brilliant in everything she does; the humour, suspense, mystery… I mean, she even had me guessing and confused even though I’ve seen the movies a billion times.

I loved getting to delve deeper into the motives and life of Voldemort, it was just so interesting to learn about his past, and what makes him such a complex character. As well as seeing the relationships, or lack of, with him and other people.

The love aspect of this book, oh the loveeee, was so cute to read about. I mean, between Ron and Hermione, and Harry and Ginny, how could it not be good? You could really see them growing up throughout this novel, which I also enjoyed.

The relationship between Harry and Dumbledore grew even more in this book (which made the ending that much harder) I’ve always loved reading about the dynamic between those two. Such a bond.

“Dumbledore’s man through and through, aren’t you Potter?”
“Yeah I am,” said Harry. “Glad we straightened that out.”

Malfoy, well he was such an interesting character in this one, right from the moment when he stepped on Harry’s nose *wince*, that was intense. It was so cool to be able to read about the mystery behind this guy, and try to figure him out a bit more. Draco has always fascinated me, which is probably half to do with Tom Felton, let’s be real.

Snape, uhm, I’m still kinda confused where I stand in regards to if I like or don’t like him, at the moment it’s a bit of both. I guess the Deathly Hallows will help me out, but I do really enjoy reading about Snape, even if he makes some…questionable decisions.

Can’t forget to mention Slughorn! He was a great addition to the story, I really enjoyed his character, and all that he brought to the novel.

Once again, the friendship between Ron/Harry/Hermione warmed my little heart, and also tore at it a bit over the course of the novel *cough* thanks Lavender *cough*. But they never fail to make me smile. I feel like even though there was still a bit of it, the angst levels were much lower in this one, haha.

Also, how can you not love Fred and George? I adore those two, they’re like me in twin boy form.

“The thing about growing up with Fred and George,” said Ginny thoughtfully, “is that you sort of start thinking anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve.”

All-in-All, this was yet another solid addition to this amazing series, and it’s just incredible how much more I’m getting out of the books than the movies, I really didn’t expect to learn this much. Admittedly, I didn’t even truly know what a Horcrux was until this book…oops.

Can’t believe it’s time for the final journey…

Until next time, Harry.

That’s all,

Kate :)

You by Caroline Kepnes: REVIEW

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THE DETAILS:

Book: You

Author: Caroline Kepnes

Pages: 424

Read: 19th February, 2016

Rating: 4/5 Stars


GOODREADS SUMMARY:

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card.

There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting.

As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder.


REVIEW:

Plot: 4/5

Characters: 4/5

Writing: 4/5

 

I’m not even sure where to start with this review, but let’s see where this takes me…

This is my first ever ‘Adult’ book, and what a first one it was. I was also so impressed to realize that this is Kepnes’ debut novel, and it is astounding for a debut.

You was enticing, scary, thrilling and downright psychotic.
Our protagonist, Joe, is the one doing all the psychotic things, so it literally messed me up to be in his mind, so much so that I had trouble sleeping because I just kept thinking about Joe and all my theories about him. I also didn’t allow myself to read this book for two days whilst I was studying because I was remembering/thinking of the book more than I was my notes…

In terms of the focal point of the novel, in my opinion, the stalkerish ways and obsessions that Joe had, I feel like were written so seamlessly and so well-done that it was easy to forget that what Joe was doing was not normal, much as he never realized that either.
I applaud Kepnes’ for her ability to write from this perspective for so long whilst creating the book, I’m not sure I would’ve come out of it sane.

This novel had me turning pages, and wanting to know more the whole time, and although at some points I was a little disappointed because I was expecting more to come from certain situations, that didn’t really take away from my overall opinion. Also I feel kind-of bad that I didn’t seem to care too much about the deaths of certain characters because no one was very likeable at all, and they all had pretty bad lives anyway, oops. (I swear I don’t mean that in a psychotic way, haha).

The ending, the ending  (and I’m talking the last 2 pages), just perfectly drove home the whole concept of the novel, and really just cemented the whole backstory and current story of Joe, you’ll know what I mean if you’ve read it! It also set up the second book perfectly, there is so much more to be told of Joe’s story, I feel.

I found myself analysing a lot throughout this book thanks english class, uh but in this instance, I enjoyed analyzing it, because I was able to pick up on things that perhaps weren’t explicitly stated, and it allowed me to delve deeper into the mind of Joe (not that that’s such a good idea).

Although not perfect (but what is), You was a fantastic psychological/stalkerish/messed up book that’ll keep your brain ticking for weeks.
I really can’t think of much more to write other than I think you need to read this book for yourself in order to realize that you come out of it with not much to say but a lot to think about.

 

That’s all,

Kate 🙂

Sisters of blood and spirit by Kady Cross: REVIEW

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THE DETAILS:

Book: Sisters of blood and spirit

Author: Kady Cross

Pages: 270

Read: 10th February, 2016

Rating: 2.75/5 Stars


GOODREADS SUMMARY:

Wren Noble is dead—she was born that way. Vibrant, unlike other dead things, she craves those rare moments when her twin sister allows her to step inside her body and experience the world of the living.

Lark Noble is alive but often feels she belongs in the muted Shadow Lands—the realm of the dead. Known as the crazy girl who talks to her dead sister, she doesn’t exactly fit in with the living, though a recent suicide attempt and time in a psych ward have proved to her she’s not ready to join her sister in the afterlife.

Now the guy who saved Lark’s life needs her to repay the favor. He and his friends have been marked for death by the malevolent spirit of a vicious and long-dead serial killer, and the twins—who should know better than to mess with the dead—may be their only hope of staying alive.


REVIEW:

Plot: 3/5

Characters: 2.5/5

Writing: 2.5/5

 

The rating may seem like I didn’t like this book, but that’s not true, I did like it, I just couldn’t give it a full 3 stars because I’ve read other books that I’ve given 3 stars which I enjoyed more than this one…see my dilemma? Also can I just mention how stunning the cover is?! Anyway, I’ll continue…

I loved the start of this book, and thought It started out very promising, but as I continued reading it just went in a direction I wasn’t really hoping it would go.
The beginning included a school setting, ghosts, and a gripping back story to the characters, all in which I feel was lost after the first 50 pages or so. cries.
Also, one thing that really bugged me was that the whole book consisted of talk about the suicide attempt by Lark, which set up the novel to where it was going to go, yet it was never explained or even talked about in detail, it was as if readers were already meant to know exactly what they were talking about everytime it was mentioned. Maybe this’ll be explained in more detail in the sequel?

The characters, I felt I couldn’t really get attached to and I found some quite annoying, like Lark. Lark is one of our two main protagonists (as this book is told in dual point of view through different chapters), and I found her to be so aggravating and just downright painful to read from most of the time. Wren was the other POV, she was a little more interesting (because she’s a ghost), and much less aggraving than Lark, although she still did have her moments.

At times I just got completley confused with the characters, and what was going on with them. The writing to me felt as if it was trying to appeal to the stereotyped version of ‘teenagers’, such as using unnessecary slang words or internal monolouge.

As well as this, at times it felt like the author was attempting to hint at something but was not being subtle at all, like she thought us readers were not smart enough to figure it out on our own (which I’m 99% sure was not the intention of the author at all, I’m just saying how it felt). Thus, a few things I did work out before they were revelaed, or even thought about by the characters yet.

I feel like this book had a lot of potential, but didn’t quite meet that point for me, although it was still entertaining to read, and I did enjoy it despite its faults.

That’s all,

Kate 🙂

The Good Girls by Sara Shepard: REVIEW

THE DETAILS:

Book: The Good Girls, book 2 in The Perfectionists duo-logy

Author: Sara Shepard

Published: Hot Key Books, July 2nd 2015

Pages: 288

Read: July 31st, 2015

Rating: 4/5 Stars


GOODREADS SUMMARY of book one:

In Beacon Heights High, Nolan Hotchkiss is king. His charm, wealth and good looks are deceptively seductive, and many are the students whose lives and reputations have been ruined by it. All while Nolan continues to reign, unquestioned and undisrupted. Until now, that is.

Mackenzie, Ava, Julie, Caitlin and Parker seemingly don’t have much in common. Each has their own friends, dramas and goals. But one thing they do share: they all have a deep hatred of Nolan Hotchkiss. And they all think it’s about time he paid for what he’s done.

They come up with the perfect murder – a hypothetical murder, of course. It’s all wishful thinking … until they wake up one morning to find that their wish has come true. Nolan has been killed – in exactly the way they planned. The thing is, they didn’t do it. So who did?


REVIEW:

I really enjoyed this book, I think more than the first instalment because I already knew who all the characters were and I was so excited to find out who the killer was!

This book was mind-blowing! That plot twist…

On page 245 we find out exactly what the heck is going on in Beacon Heights, and boy did Ms Shepard not disappoint!

I was very impressed, shocked and creeped out by how Shepard constructed the plot and revealed the killer (and yes we do find out, this isn’t a 16 book series). I loved who it turned out to be and the story that went along with it! Amazing.

Although I had my speculations about certain characters, and I was kind-of on the right track, the overall reveal of the killer still left me with goosebumps and left me too scared to sleep facing the wall…

I cannot express my satisfaction enough in relation to the ending, I’m happy with how every characters story arc’s tied up. Even though Shepard has a knack for ending her series with a loose end, and an opportunity to write more, I don’t think I’d oppose to that… I am still content with the ending.

Basically, I’d buy and read anything Sara Shepard writes, and can’t wait to see what she has in store for the future! More murder mystery books, please.

I recommended to:

Anyone who has read the first book, obviously, and anyone who loves a good plot twist, is a fan of mystery, suspense, and seriously good scary novels!

Yeah that’s it,

Kate 🙂

The Perfectionists by Sara Shepard: REVIEW

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THE DETAILS:

Book: The Perfectionists, book 1 in The Perfectionists duo-logy

Author: Sara Shepard

Published: Hot Key Books, October 2nd 2014

Pages: 267

Read: June 28th-29th, 2015

Rating: 4/5 Stars


goodreads summary:

In Beacon Heights High, Nolan Hotchkiss is king. His charm, wealth and good looks are deceptively seductive, and many are the students whose lives and reputations have been ruined by it. All while Nolan continues to reign, unquestioned and undisrupted. Until now, that is.

Mackenzie, Ava, Julie, Caitlin and Parker seemingly don’t have much in common. Each has their own friends, dramas and goals. But one thing they do share: they all have a deep hatred of Nolan Hotchkiss. And they all think it’s about time he paid for what he’s done.

They come up with the perfect murder – a hypothetical murder, of course. It’s all wishful thinking … until they wake up one morning to find that their wish has come true. Nolan has been killed – in exactly the way they planned. The thing is, they didn’t do it. So who did?


Review:

As I expected, I really enjoyed this book, of course it’s Sara Shepard, how could I not?

My thoughts on each of the main characters: 

Parker: she was a really interesting and in-depth character to read about, who was just so complex. I can’t wait to find out more about her in the next book. I predicted what was going to happen in regards to her relationship plot line, but I still enjoyed it nonetheless.

Mackenzie: I loved Mac, she was so fun to read about. She’s the musical character, and her story with her so-called ‘friend’ Claire, and her boyfriend was really intriguing, and I’m excited to see how that is all handled in the next book.

Ava: I also loved Ava, I feel like she played the biggest role in relation to the main ‘suspect’ in this novel, and I love her relationship with Alex.

Julie: she was great, I really enjoyed reading about her ‘secret’ relating to her home life, and how she was always there for her friends.

Caitlin: I really loved Caitlin, her relationship plot line was the most interesting to read about out of all the girls, and I’m so excited to see where that goes in the next book. I’m also interested to see how her whole ‘soccer’ situation plays out.

This book was quite short, so there’s not a lot to say, but I really, really enjoyed it and can’t wait to pick up the second and final instalment.
I really enjoyed all the characters, and despite the huge amount of characters in this book, it didn’t take me very long to decipher them from one another.

I’m so intrigued and eager to find out who the killer is… Have to wait not so patiently for the second book to come in the mail…

I recommended to:

Anyone who’s a fan of Sara Shepard’s writing, anyone who’s not, if you love mystery and suspense, fans of Pretty Little Liars.

 

Yeah that’s it,

Kate 🙂