Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Mini-Reviews Because I'm Baaaaack

First, I'd like to bring up the new Goodreads, modern-y layout/format. I don't know what to say about it, but I did bring it up, and I'm pretty sure that counts for something.

Now, if some of you thought that I had dropped off the face of the Earth, never to be seen again, well, I can't blame you. I've been hiding in a cave in the very depths of the ocean - aka college - and lemme tell you, my time management skills haven't improved much. I read a decent amount, but even the thought of blogging was laughable with papers to write, naps to take, and sixteen shows to stay on top of. However, Christmas break has arrived, and thanks to these lovely things called mid-season finales, I have absolutely no idea what to do with my life. And so I turn to blogging. As one does.

What's craziest about late 2015 is probably that I have done more re-reading in these last few months than I have done in the past four years (coincidentally, I've been re-watching a lot of movies as well). Below are my most recent re-reads, some of which I'm currently reading - they're just as good as they were the first time I read them!

The exception is Twilight. I like it enough, and it's still addicting, but I'm noticing flaws I didn't the first two times I read it when I was younger. I hadn't actually planned on re-reading the novel, but I got a bit nostalgic during my attempt to read Meyer's new gender-bent version, Life and Death (which I'm not even going to attempt to talk about right now).

Anyways, enough about my life; now it's time to discuss several of the books I read while I was "off the radar".

Six Of Crows
by Leigh Bardugo
Rating: ★★★★
Series: Six Of Crows #1
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Publication Date: September 29, 2015
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Pages: 465 pages

I was just as excited as everyone else for the release of this book several months ago; when I got an email from the library saying they had it ready for me, I was jazz-hands excited. The excitement didn't diminish when I started reading, but as I went on, I realized that Six Of Crows wasn't exactly what I had expected. The characters and storylines were amazing, but at the same time, very different from what we got from the original Grisha series. I had a blast reading this - there are some a m a z i n g ships that are to d i e for - but the problem is that I don't get the significance of the plot. This might just be me, but I can't see beyond the con and the characters themselves. I had a great time reading the novel, but I don't think this series will go down as particularly special or memorable for me.

Ms. Marvel Vol. 1
by G. Willow Wilson & Adrian Alphona
Rating: ★★★★
Series: Ms. Marvel #1
Genre: Graphic Novel, YA
Publication Date: October 30, 2014
Publisher: Marvel
Pages: 120 pages

I'm not really much of a comic book person, but I saw this one around the blogosphere and I got interested - not to mention Marvel seems to be a bigger deal than usual recently (or maybe that's just me). Either way, I couldn't stop myself from picking this one up as soon as I saw it at the library, and I definitely don't regret it. This was a really fun read, even though it's not my usual genre. I like that this is one of the few times the main character isn't white, which brought a lot of diversity into the graphic, but other than that, I don't see the big deal about the comic. Even so, it's completely possible I'm just being a rather large pessimist, so if you're a fan of Marvel and/or their comics, then I suggest you get on this graphic as soon as possible if only because it's so different - I sincerely hope that it doesn't disappoint.

A Study In Charlotte
by Brittany Cavallaro
Rating: ★★★★
Series: Charlotte Holmes #1
Genre: YA, Retelling, Mystery
Publication Date: March 1, 2016
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Pages: 336 pages

It took me a loooong time to read this one, as I was pretty sure that I would hate its guts - or its words, I guess. I was very excited for this one before reading it, but after reading Lock & Mori by Heather W. Petty, I became dissuaded from the notion of this novel.  I realized that me and Sherlock retellings don't usually work, the exception being Jackaby by William Ritter. Unfortunately, I despised this book for the first forty percent or so - the gender-bending didn't really work for me at first - but one night I finally forced myself to finish the book, and what do you know, not only did I begin to enjoy the characters, but the plot as well. This will go down as one of the only two Sherlock Holmes retellings in the entire world that I do not despise at the moment, and I am oh so very glad that this one made the list.

Not If I See You First
by Eric Lindstrom
Rating: ★★★★
Genre: YA, Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: December 1, 2015
Publisher: Poppy
Pages: 320 pages

Ever since I first heard about this novel, I've been crazy ridiculously obsessed with it. I mean, a romance between a brilliant, snarky blind girl and the boy who betrayed her and whom she is determined to ice out? It doesn't get better than that for a romance junkie like me.  I was disappointed by the story because the love interest is barely in the novel, but in the grand scheme of things, it didn't matter. The main character, her friendship and growth, and just the essence of the romance, even without the love interest playing an integral part of the plot, was brilliant all on its own. The main character's relationship with running and the unique ending to the story made this book special and different from many other contemporary romance novels out there. This book may not be what I had originally expected when reaching for the novel, but what I got was just as good.

It's good to be back. Happy reading, everyone!