Book review: No Parking at the End Times by Bryan Bliss

22403036No Parking at the End Times by Bryan Bliss

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Genre:Contemporary and Young Adult

Release Date: February 24, 2015

Pages: 272 (Hardcover)

good good

Abigail’s parents have made mistake after mistake, and now they’ve lost everything. She’s left to decide: Does she still believe in them? Or is it time to believe in herself? Fans of Sara Zarr, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell will connect with this moving debut.

Abigail doesn’t know how her dad found Brother John. Maybe it was the billboards. Or the radio. What she does know is that he never should have made that first donation. Or the next, or the next. Her parents shouldn’t have sold their house. Or packed Abigail and her twin brother, Aaron, into their old van to drive across the country to San Francisco, to be there with Brother John for the “end of the world.” Because of course the end didn’t come. And now they’re living in their van. And Aaron’s disappearing to who-knows-where every night. Their family is falling apart. All Abigail wants is to hold them together, to get them back to the place where things were right. But maybe it’s too big a task for one teenage girl.

opinionLook, let’s just get straight to the point. Was I made by the end of this book? Not quite. Did I still have a lot of questions, like how some loser conned more than two dozen people into giving him pretty much everything? Fuck yes. But more than that, I was disappointed. I felt so underwhelmed by every aspect of No Parking at the End Times, even during the parts where there should have been a lot of religious insight,fuck, any kind of insight, I got nothing. You’re better off skimming a pamphlet on the ‘New World’ rather than read this book.

Why? Because nothing happens. And when something does happen, it’s 77% into the book, where no shits are given anymore. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good build-up, leaving room for nothing but suspense however this is ridiculous. And when you pair a boring book and awkward writing that’s full of unnecessary words, well, the outcome isn’t pretty. Moreover, for a novel that has so much on the Now, there’s almost nothing on the Then part. The book is mostly surrounded on the decisions that Abigail’s father has made and still making, how his mistakes have caused the family to lose greatly. So when I was reading and found close to nothing, honest to God, nothing on what made him switch gears and decide to listen to Brother John, I couldn’t help but scream. Adding onto this, the characters aren’t fleshed out. Abigail, I could understand for the most part because I could relate to her but only to a point. Halfway done, I stopped caring about her as well as the other characters. They just don’t stick out, especially Brother John, who is supposed to be this magnificent man sent down from God. Obviously he’s not but I did not see the appeal of him. He always gave generic answers, didn’t read any fucking verses from the Bible despite always having it on hand, and all around, didn’t even act like he was really into it. As a con artist you have to at least fake to have your heart in it, this guy gave no fucks. Now, does that sound like a man two relatively responsible adults with two children would give everything to? It doesn’t to me, I still don’t understand where Bliss was going with him.

Nonetheless, there are some mediocre things that I didn’t mind. One of them being the Before chapters albeit short and mostly pointless because they tell only snippets of what happened, of how they got to California rather than giving the whole picture.

No Parking at the End Times might have been since most books about the Rapture don’t really go into after the ‘even’, only about two weeks later. What made me even more disappointed is the fact that the beginning is so good. Like, guys, it’s so good. It’s intense, mysterious, and exciting. I was giddy with pleasure (that died like two or three chapters later). Would I recommend this novel? No, like I said before, I got more information from a pamphlet, hell, even the damn internet than I did on the actual Rapture, or on anything religious. This should tell you something about how badly this book is written when I have to complain multiple times about the religion aspect of it. And I don’t even like religion.

1.5 Odd Clouds

1.5 Odd Clouds

Book Review: The Jewel (The Lone City#1) by Amy Ewing

16068780The Jewel (The Lone City#1) by Amy Ewing

Publisher: HarperTeen

Genre: Dystopian and Young Adult

Release Date: September 2, 2014

Pages: 358 (Hardcover)

good good

The Jewel means wealth. The Jewel means beauty. The Jewel means royalty. But for girls like Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Not just any kind of servitude. Violet, born and raised in the Marsh, has been trained as a surrogate for the royalty—because in the Jewel the only thing more important than opulence is offspring.

Purchased at the surrogacy auction by the Duchess of the Lake and greeted with a slap to the face, Violet (now known only as #197) quickly learns of the brutal truths that lie beneath the Jewel’s glittering facade: the cruelty, backstabbing, and hidden violence that have become the royal way of life.

Violet must accept the ugly realities of her existence… and try to stay alive. But then a forbidden romance erupts between Violet and a handsome gentleman hired as a companion to the Duchess’s petulant niece. Though his presence makes life in the Jewel a bit brighter, the consequences of their illicit relationship will cost them both more than they bargained for.

First of all, I would like to thank the publisher, HarperTeen for giving me an ARC of this book to review. Thank you so much! Really appreciate it! All right, now for my review.

opinion

The Jewel is like a fake diamond, really. At first glance, it’s breathtaking and stunning however, the longer you stare at it, the more cracks and falseness it has.

The world setting is really half-assed, nothing is well explained. Violet, the protagonist is so dull and so naive that I couldn’t care at all what happened to her. Moreover, the insta-love is so forced and awkward that I couldn’t help but laugh. First of all, since the characters are forgettable at best, nothing happens except the usual save the girl crap which only makes the whole story awkward and stiff.

However, like I said, upon first glance, The Jewel is beautiful and intriguing. The writing is stiff yet it fits the story (since everything about the book is stiff as fuck).

Overall, this book is not worth the time. It’s interesting at first but quickly goes south. Even the ending is typical and stupid. I don’t recommend this book at all because there are much better novels to read.

1.5 Odd Clouds

1.5 Odd Clouds

Book Review: Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

19367070Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

Publisher: HarperTeen

Genre: Fantasy and Young Adult

Release Date: September 9, 2014

Pages: 275 (Hardcover)

good good

Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets Finn, a gorgeous, enigmatic young lord who introduces her to the secret world of Albion’s nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn’t—power, money, status…and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, dangerous secrets that the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits and her determination, can stop him.

First of all, I would like to thank the publisher, HarperTeen for giving me an ARC of this book to review. Thank you so much! Really appreciate it! All right, now for my review.

opinionAfter finishing Kiersten White’s Mind Games series, I can say that she has a strange style It’s at first, really fucking annoying but starts to grow on you. And after reading, Illusions of Fate I say that this roller coaster of annoyance is a good thing because despite hating the beginning of her novels, I always come to enjoy them even if it’s a little which is what happened with this book. It’s all over the place but works itself out. It’s a solid ‘meh’ type of book.

I wanted a more believable world from White. The book and characters get boring fairly quickly in the story because nothing happens but planning for this and that. Also, the reaction Jessamin has when she finds out Eleanor and Finn can practice magic is so unbelievable it’s almost funny. Adding onto this, like I said before, the characters a bit boring. I wanted Jessamin to be a badass instead of only dipping her toe in the water that is badassness. She lets Finn do everything rather than doing it for herself. Moreover, the ending where Downpike explains everything felt forced and not something that would actually happen.

Still, the slow burn romance is actually really well done. As far as characters go, Eleanor is by far my favourite with her sassy tone. And of course the twists in the book are great, White doesn’t tell everything and I liked this because it’s on little things and  I barely suspected a thing.

Illusions of Fate is a solid book. All of my blogger friends like it as well. I wouldn’t say it’s amazing or inspirational but it’s something. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves gothic like stories with magic and evil guys.

3 Mediocre Clouds

3 Mediocre Clouds

Book Review: Kiss of Broken Glass by Madeleine Kuderick

20306810Kiss of Broken Glass by Madeleine Kuderick

Publisher: HarperTeen

Genre: Contemporary and Young Adult

Release Date: September 9, 2014

Pages: 224 (Hardcover)

good good

In the next seventy-two hours, Kenna may lose everything—her friends, her freedom, and maybe even herself. One kiss of the blade was all it took to get her sent to the psych ward for seventy-two hours. There she will face her addiction to cutting, though the outcome is far from certain.

When fifteen-year-old Kenna is found cutting herself in the school bathroom, she is sent to a facility for mandatory psychiatric watch. There, Kenna meets other kids like her—her roommate, Donya, who’s there for her fifth time; the birdlike Skylar; and Jag, a boy cute enough to make her forget her problems . . . for a moment.

First of all, I would like to thank the publisher, HarperTeen for giving me an ARC of this book to review. Thank you so much! Really appreciate it! All right, now for my review.

opinion

I will always love short books because they can be read in an a short matter of time, like this, Kiss of  Broken Glass which only took my an hour to read. Unfortunately, I’ve learned that just because a book is short, doesn’t mean it’s any good.

The big problem, I believe is the way mental illness is shown in the book. I understand that not everyone is perfect and some people do think that cutting is ‘the coolest thing ever’ but I wanted the main character to actually change and learn her lesson instead of being a dumbass which she is from beginning to end. On top of this, the writing is stiff and I didn’t give two shits about any of the characters because of their one-sidedness.

The only upside is that I like that the book is in verse.

Kiss of Broken Glass is a really short book with boring characters, a typical atmosphere, and stiff writing. Since there’s not much time to add depth to the story, everything I read just felt like one huge info-dump. I don’t recommend unless you are in desperate need for something short.

1.5 Odd Clouds

1.5 Odd Clouds

Book Review: In the After (In the After#1) by Demitria Lunetta

12157407In the After (In the After#1) by Demitria Lunetta

Publisher: HarperTeen

Genre: Dystopian and Young Adult

Release Date: June 25, 2013

Pages: 455 (Hardcover)

good good

They hear the most silent of footsteps.

They are faster than anything you’ve ever seen.
And They won’t stop chasing you…until you are dead.

Amy is watching TV when it happens, when the world is attacked by Them. These vile creatures are rapidly devouring mankind. Most of the population is overtaken, but Amy manages to escape—and even rescue “Baby,” a toddler left behind in the chaos. Marooned in Amy’s house, the girls do everything they can to survive—and avoid Them at all costs.

After years of hiding, they are miraculously rescued and taken to New Hope, a colony of survivors living in a former government research compound. While at first the colony seems like a dream with plenty of food, safety, and shelter, New Hope slowly reveals that it is far from ideal. And Amy soon realizes that unless things change, she’ll lose Baby—and much more.

opinion

In the After is your typical dystopian read. There’s the corrupt government, the almost destroyed world, and then the survivors trying to take down the government/fight. However, with that being said, I actually enjoyed this book. Lunetta brings in a refreshing look and style to the things by forcing a love interest down until the very end and focusing as much time and effort into the main goal: survival. I had a lot of fun reading this action-packed story and can’t wait for the next one.

Unfortunately, there are a few mishaps along the way. There’s a lot of information given during despite it being really important, I felt that it could have been placed in a better place rather than shoved in the beginning. Also, the whole aliens thing is predictable, I knew right from the start and I would have loved it if Lunetta could have add more mystery to this part of the book.

Still, the setting and mood is perfectly described for the Before part of the book. The relationship between Baby and Amy is great, it’s complex and realistic and I loved reading about how protective Amy is of her. Adding onto this, the characters are well-developed, especially Baby because of how different and strange she is. From day one, she knew the rules and obediently followed them. That still boggles my mind! Parts with the present and past and the memories had my full attention because they’re so unique and different.

I’m not exactly sure what I was getting into when I first picked this one up. I was praying that it wouldn’t be a typical Dystopian read. And albeit it is, it’s so much more than that also, it’s a refreshing look at Dystopian which I never knew could happen because they all seem to be about the same thing. Nonetheless, I recommend this read to everyone because it’s different and it’s action-packed and suspenseful.

4 Dreamy Clouds

4 Dreamy Clouds

 

For quotes from this book, click, here.

Book Review: The Murder Complex (The Murder Complex#1) by Lindsay Cummings

13576132The Murder Complex (The Murder Complex#1) by Lindsay Cummings

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Genre: Dystopian and Young Adult

Release Date: June 10, 2014

Pages: 398 (Hardcover)

good good

Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision.

The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family?

First of all, I would like to thank the publisher, Greenwillow Books for giving me an ARC of this book to review. Thank you so much! Really appreciate it! All right, now for my review.

 

opinion

Honestly, what is this crap? Because from all the hype, I would have thought this book would be amazing and lively and shit. It’s not, not at all despite the non-stop action. I feel like The author thought that adding a shit ton of action and fighting would make up for the story being shitty but it really doesn’t and never will.

I got bored after the first chapter because of the writing which is so awkward and choppy as well as the characters which are ALL forgettable and as creative and original as a bowl of plain oatmeal. The romance sucks ass since it’s full-blown insta-love. Like, it’s the worst case I’ve ever read which is saying a lot if you check the shelf I have just for book full of insta-love. Moreover, for someone who’s been taught to be smart and survive, Meadow sure is stupid and naive. First, she risks death to save a stranger, and then she tries to negotiate with her killer just because she thinks he’s cute. I really don’t understand how she’s made it this far.

The chapters are really short. That’s always a plus.

The idea for The Murder Complex is really cool but that’s where the coolness ends. I’m so disappointed with this one. There was so much hype and I got really excited too, but don’t let that awesome cover and title fool you. This book is dull, stupid, and forgettable.

One Lonely Cloud

One Lonely Cloud

Book Review: Life by Committee by Corey Ann Haydu

17693452Life by Committee by Corey Ann Haydu

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Genre: Contemporary and Young Adult

Release Date: May 13, 2014

Pages: 304 (Hardcover)

good good

Some secrets are too good to keep.

Tabitha might be the only girl in the history of the world who actually gets less popular when she gets hot. But her so-called friends say she’s changed, and they’ve dropped her flat.

Now Tab has no one to tell about the best and worst thing that has ever happened to her: Joe, who spills his most intimate secrets to her in their nightly online chats. Joe, whose touch is so electric, it makes Tab wonder if she could survive an actual kiss. Joe, who has Tabitha brimming with the restless energy of falling in love. Joe, who is someone else’s boyfriend.

Just when Tab is afraid she’ll burst from keeping the secret of Joe inside, she finds Life by Committee. The rules of LBC are simple: tell a secret, receive an assignment. Complete the assignment to keep your secret safe.

Tab likes it that the assignments push her to her limits, empowering her to live boldly and go further than she’d ever go on her own.

First of all, I would like to thank the publisher, Katherine Tegen Books for giving me an ARC of this book to review. Thank you so much! Really appreciate it! All right, now for my review.

opinion

I don’t even know why I tried with this one. I really don’t. Everything is just everywhere and I had no clue what was going on. And I actually tried to like this one, reading until the very last page despite my many groans and screams of anger and frustration and head banging and almost throwing my E-Reader at the fucking wall.

The whole concept of Life by Committee is stupid. The whole community is insane, the rules aren’t explained well and the assignments are so juvenile and stupid. They aren’t realistic nor do they support ‘living life to the fullest’. The characters suck, Joe is as interesting as a fucking toaster. Moreover, the romance is complete shit. Nothing about it explained. They’re just fucking together. What is this, Kindergarten where people bump into each other and are like, “We’re dating now.”

On top of this, the ending is dumb and pretty plain and kindergarten like.

However, the writing is all right. There’s nothing completely horrendous about it.

Life by Committee is not by any means a good, fun, enjoyable read. If anything, it’s dull, frustrating, and childish. Don’t read this book. It’s boring and nothing is explained.

One Lonely Cloud

One Lonely Cloud