Sunday, May 31, 2015

May Wrap Up

May Wrap-Up and June TBR
This week, I’m linking up with the Sunday Post.  Go check it out!
This month has just been crazy.  I still can’t believe that May is over.  But I’m super excited because June means school is wrapping up and it will officially be summer.  I can’t wait for the sunny days and hot weather.
And summer means I’ll have tons more free time for reading and blogging and I am looking forward to spending the summer doing just that!

How many books did I read?

So, I read a total of 9 books in April, which Is exactly the same as last month.  I don’t know how that happened.  I haven’t been too happy with how many books I’ve been reading, because 9 for the whole month doesn’t seem like a lot to me.  And I’m getting really behind in my Goodreads challenge.  But, like I said, I am getting really excited because I know that I’ll have tons more time for reading soon.    
Also: I have reviews up for almost all of these, so if you are interested, check them out!

How do my ratings look this month?

 Overall, I am happy with the books I read this month.  I discovered Colleen Hoover, tried something new by reading a graphic novel, and read Sarah Dessen’s newest book, Saint Anything and The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West. 

So, how is my Goodreads goal doing?  Pretty bad.

Last month I said “hopefully I’ll be able to catch up by May”.  Hahaha.  No.  I’m 7 books behind now, whereas last month, I was only 4 books behind. 

June TBR

My May TBR was an utter failure.  I told you I can’t do TBR’s.  I wanted to read Vanishing Girls and The Winners Crime.  Did I get to either of those this month?  No.  It’s quite frustrating. 
Honestly, I don’t really think I’m making a TBR.  I just know that I’m in a contemporary mood, so I’ll probably be reading a lot of those. 

So, that was my month in review!  What about you?  Leave me a link to your May wrap up and June TBR.  


Saturday, May 30, 2015

Let's Talk: Settings in YA

As a teenager living in the United States, It doesn’t always occur to me that there isn’t a whole lot of variety in settings when it comes to YA.  Now, don’t get me wrong, YA has come a long way within the past years and there is a lot more variety than there used to be.  But, think about it.  The majority of contemporary or even some paranormal and dystopian books are set in the US.

I do understand that the majority of YA authors probably live in the United States.  So, no doubt, that plays a factor.  I feel like to realistically portray what another places is like, you actually have to have been there yourself. 

And publishing factors in too.  Not every book is published in every place.  There may be a lot of UKYA books that us readers in the United States have never heard of, and vice versa.  For example, the Geek Girl series by Holly Smale has been HUGE in the UK for quite a while now, but the first book has only recently been published in the United States.

There are a couple of Australian bloggers that I follow that talk about how much they love reading books by Aussie authors.  And I think that’s great.  I’d love to read book written by authors who live outside of the US. 

So, I guess my question here is…why are there so few YA books set in other places?  I would love to see books by authors who live in other places being publicized in the US and US authors writing books set in different places. 

I suppose there’s no direct answer to that question.  It’s just something that I was thinking about because personally, I love reading books set in fun places like Europe.  I love getting to visit other places that I may never get to see in real life.  Well, not anytime soon anyway. 

Before I wrap up here, one more question.  I feel like a lot of popular YA books are set in the US and written by American authors.  (or is that just me)  Anyways, do you lovely bloggers and readers who live outside of the US ever get tired of reading and seeing book set in the United States?  Do you wish there was more variety too?  Or is there more variety where you live and just not here for me in the US?

Share your thoughts and let me know!

Friday, May 29, 2015

Feature and Follow #2

Today, I'm participating in Feature and Follow, hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read.
Basically it's a fun weekly blog hop where you get to interact with fellow book bloggers, thus gaining friends and followers.  The directions are as follows: You follow the hosts, Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. Make a post that answers that week's prompt, and link it up on either one of the hosts' blogs. Then, go follow and make friends with as many other participating book bloggers as you'd like.  To see the complete directions, click here.
As far as following me, Bloglovin or GFC is fine. J (Though I always follow on Bloglovin)

This week's question is:
How many books have you got on your TBR list? via Obsessive Compulsive Reader

Wow.  I really don’t want to answer this question.
The amount of unread books that I have is embarrassing and unacceptable.  I have books, yet I just keep buying. 
So, I’m going to cheat. 
I consider my TBR to be every book that I want to read.  Not necessarily books that I own. 
My Goodreads TBR is now up to 573.  Which is crazy because I’ll never be able to read all of them because IT JUST KEEPS GROWING. 
But, out of curiosity (I need to know that I’m not the only one) how many of your physical TBR’s are almost reaching triple digits?  Is that bad?  It that not a lot?  Let me know!

Well, that was overwhelming.  I’ll see you guys again next week!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Review: Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Published: 2015 

Genres: Contemporary
Format: Hardcover

What is Saint Anything about?
Peyton, Sydney's charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion's share of their parents' attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton's increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?

Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.

The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.


Saint Anything had everything I’d come to expect from a Sarah Dessen book.  I’ve been reading Sarah Dessen for quite a while and I love her writing.  In Saint Anything, she presents another great story and amazing, relatable characters with her trademark writing style that I’ve come to love. 

One of the things I really loved about Saint Anything was the wonderful characters.  I really liked Sydney, the main character, and found her to be really relatable.  Sydney is going through a really rough time with her family and dealing with how her brother’s actions have affected the family.  She befriends another family, particularly brother and sister, Layla and Mac.  It is great to see Sydney making friends at her new school and getting to know Layla and Mac.  I loved their family’s pizza shop and how Sydney always went there after school.  Like I said, it was just great seeing Sydney gradually grow closer to this wonderful family. 

The one thing that I found myself angry at with Saint Anything was Sydney’s mom.  I feel like she was punishing Sydney for what happened to her brother and that’s just not fair.  Even though her brother Peyton was no longer living in the house, all discussion and thoughts revolved around him.  I just really felt bad for Sydney, because she felt lost and forgotten in the midst of Peyton, even though Peyton himself wasn’t even there anymore.  I got so angry at Sydney's mother, in particular, that I just wanted to yell at her so bad.  She was neglecting her other child in order to coddle and baby her son, who is almost an adult and should deal with and own up to his actions on his own.  I feel like if Sydney had been like Peyton, her family’s behavior would have most definitely pushed her to get into trouble as well.  But, that isn’t a negative.  I like to get angry and feel emotions when I’m reading.  Sarah Dessen did a wonderful job!

Like I talked about earlier, I really loved the emphasis on family and friendship in Saint AnythingWhile Sydney was being neglected by her own parents, the Chathams generously took her in and made her feel welcome.  You could feel what a loving, tight knit family they were, and I loved that.  As I talk about quite often on this blog, I love it when there is emphasis placed on family and friends, and Saint Anything definitely gets an A+ in that department.  I loved watching Sydney and Layla’s friendship grow and how much they both helped each other.  Layla was such a great character and I loved her personality. (French Fry obsession?  I think that’s a first)    Same with Mac.  I thought he was super sweet and getting to see a brother/sister relationship was definitely a plus.  


Final Thoughts:

Overall, I loved Saint Anything and I am once again, impressed by Sarah Dessen.  There were so many more amazing aspects of this book and things I liked, but I can’t mention them all in one review.  I think Saint Anything was a wonderful portrayal of family, friendship, and how it is family and friends that really get you through hard times.  I loved seeing Sydney grow and change and her and Mac were simply adorable.  I think longtime Sarah Dessen fans and ones new to Sarah Dessen will both really enjoy Saint Anything


Have you read Saint Anything?  Did you have a craving for pizza and French fries while reading it?  What were your thoughts?

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday #7

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill of Breaking The Spine that spotlights an upcoming release that you are anticipating.

This week, I’m most anticipating Sweet by Emmy Laybourne
Sweet by Emmy Laybourne

Publish Date: June 2nd  2015             

Genres: Contemporary/Thriller

What is Sweet about?

*People would kill to be thin.*

Solu’s luxurious celebrity-filled “Cruise to Lose” is billed as “the biggest cruise since the Titanic,” and if the new diet sweetener works as promised—dropping five percent of a person’s body weight in just days—it really could be the answer to the world’s obesity problem. But Laurel is starting to regret accepting her friend Viv’s invitation. She’s already completely embarrassed herself in front of celebrity host, Tom Forelli (otherwise known as the hottest guy ever!) and she’s too seasick to even try the sweetener. And that’s before Viv and all the other passengers start acting really strange.

*But will they die for it, too?*

Tom Forelli knows that he should be grateful for this job and the opportunity to shed his childhood “Baby Tom-Tom” image. His publicists have even set up a ‘romance’ with a sexy reality star. But as things on the ship start to get a bit wild, he finds himself drawn to a different girl. And when his celebrity hosting gig turns into an expose on the shocking side effects of Solu, it’s Laurel that he’s determined to save.
Emmy Laybourne, author of the Monument 14 trilogy, takes readers on a dream vacation that goes first comically, then tragically, then horrifyingly, wrong.

Why am I waiting for Sweet?

This book sounds so unique and I’m definitely intrigued.  I’ve read the Monument 14 series by Emmy Laybourne and I really liked it a lot.  I’m super excited to be able to read a new series from her and I hope I like it.  I think the setting is really fun and the cover is pretty – very summery, yet is has a kind of dangerous vibe.  I feel like with an issue like this she could really do so much more than just an action/adventure story on a boat.  I can’t say I’ve ever heard of a book quite like this before, so I’m definitely interested to see where she goes with this.  

Are you waiting for Sweet, too? Have you read any other books by Emmy 
Laybourne?  What are you waiting for?

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Beach Reads

Top 10 Tuesday is hosted by the wonderful ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish.

This week’s topic is…  Ten Books I Plan To Have In My Beach Bag This Summer or Ten Books I Think Make Great Beach Reads

This is such a fun prompt and I can’t wait to share my list with you guys and to see your lists!  Now, since I couldn’t’ decide I’m going to do five books that I’ve already read that I think YOU should have in your beach bag, and five book that I haven’t read that are going to be in MY beach bag.  Here we go!

Five books that should be in YOUR beach bag

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
           This is the essential summertime book.  I have such fond memories of reading this on the beach last year.  It is beautiful and mind blowing and absolutely the perfect beach read.


          Let’s Get Lost by Adi Alsaid

I got this book last summer while I was on vacation (sensing a pattern?) I just happened to pick this up on a whim, and I ended up loving it.  It’s a wonderful story about  Leila’s journey and all of the people she meets along the way.  How she helps and changes them…and it’s just spontaneous and wonderful.  This is a PERFECT road trip or summer vacation book. 


 Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

GAH.  This book.  I can’t even tell you how great it s.  It’s literally summer in book form.  It’s a touching story about friendship, finding yourself, and definitely the must-read summertime book. 


The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

 I’ve read a lot of Sarah Dessen books, but I still think The Truth About Forever is my favorite.  To me, summer starts when I break out the Sarah Dessen books.  She has so many of them, and they are all wonderful stories with great characters.  I’ll have my review up for her newest novel, Saint Anything very soon!

Just One Day by Gayle Forman
            I love this book so much <3  It’s such a great story and it gives you such a rush.  It makes you want to jump up and go travel the world and experience things. 


All of these books were 5 star reads for me and come highly recommended.  I can’t even really tell you how great these are.  I definitely think that you should pick these up if you get the chance because they are all great summer and beach reads. 

Five books that are going to be in MY beach bag

        Wild Hearts by Jessica Burkhart
This is the fourth book in the If Only series of YA contemporary companion novels.  I love this series because they always have the cutest stories, each by a different author.  I especially can’t wait to read the next one, Wild Hearts, because they are so much fun for the summer and I actually used to read Jessica Burkhart books.  I definitely recommend all of these books – perfect beach reads.

            The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West

            I’m so excited to read this one!  I read On The Fence by Kasie West and it was super cute and I LOVED it.  I’m hoping I love The Fill-In Boyfriend just as much.  Kasie West’s books seem like perfect summer reads and I recommend On The Fence!

            Open Road Summer by Emery Lord

            This book was pretty popular last summer.  I never got around to reading it then, so I’ve been saving it.  It sounds super fun and I know it involves music and friends and a ROAD TRIP.  I’m really hoping I like this, and hopefully I’ll even be able to pick up the sequel. 

         To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

            This is another one that came out last summer.  I was SUPER excited for it at the time, but I never read it.  I can’t wait to finally dive into it this summer and I know there’s a sequel soon so YAY.

         Lola and The Boy Next Door By Stephanie Perkins

            I’ve read Anna and the French Kiss, which was super fun and adorable.  I feel like this is the summer where I finally pick up another Stephanie Perkins book.  Lola is next on my list!


This was SO MUCH FUN and I hope you were able to get some good beach read recommendations.  I think all of these are great summertime reads and I hope that you get to pick some of them up, wherever you may be this summer.