Book Review: We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

18339662We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Genre: Contemporary and Young Adult

Release Date: May 13, 2014

Pages: 227 (Hardcover)

good good

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

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

opinion

We Were Liars relies heavily on its setting to tell the story and despite the rating I really liked this one. It’s different from the other novels I’ve read with the writing style and the atmosphere. If it weren’t for the setting and the fact that it’s so well put together, I think that this book would have been boring and typical. Nonetheless, I enjoyed reading about this, Lockhart made the writing work and held my attention for most of the book. 

My biggest problem is how Lockhart dealt with the truth. She could have went in a ton of different directions yet she didn’t. And I had to lower my rating because of that. I skimmed a few reviews so I already had a vague idea of what happens or what ‘they’ are and I think that that’s well done.The characters delicately use the information of the past to remind our protagonist yet in a way that wouldn’t trigger another episode and keep readers guessing as to what really happened. However well the characters react, I still didn’t actually like them. They’re all rich and spoiled and whiny especially the mothers. I didn’t understand Cadence’s mother and felt that Lockhart left her unfinished or undecided because she’s mean and then she’s loving in a way that doesn’t make enough sense. 

Although I disliked the characters, I surprisingly liked the writing style and I really hate the poetic writing with close to no dialogue at all but it fits the story, giving it a unique style in a pretty confusing way. I also liked the stories and variations that are included because they’re different, dark, and exciting and I loved how the variations connected with the chapter that it’s featured in. Like I mentioned before, the setting really makes We Were Liars and I can’t stress enough how important a setting is regardless and the author does a fine job with it.

All in all, I liked this book, truly. I’m not the kind of person who enjoys reading about rich people complaining about being less rich and writing that’s more poetic and boring than anything but the mysterious setting and creepy truth does make up for it. At least, it did for me and for anyone who enjoys confusing stories and a different way of a story being told and don’t mind weak characters.

3 Clouds
3 Clouds

Book Review: Don’t Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski

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Don’t Even Think About It by  Sarah Mlynowski 

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Genre: Contemporary and Young Adult

Release Date: March 11, 2014

Pages: 336 (Hardcover)

good good

We weren’t always like this. We used to be average New York City high school sophomores. Until our homeroom went for flu shots. We were prepared for some side effects. Maybe a headache. Maybe a sore arm. We definitely didn’t expect to get telepathic powers. But suddenly we could hear what everyone was thinking. Our friends. Our parents. Our crushes. Now we all know that Tess is in love with her best friend, Teddy. That Mackenzie cheated on Cooper. That, um, Nurse Carmichael used to be a stripper.

Since we’ve kept our freakish skill a secret, we can sit next to the class brainiac and ace our tests. We can dump our boyfriends right before they dump us. We know what our friends really think of our jeans, our breath, our new bangs. We always know what’s coming. Some of us will thrive. Some of us will crack. None of us will ever be the same.
So stop obsessing about your ex. We’re always listening.

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

opinion

Can you imagine ever reading someone’s mind? I mean, there has to be at least one person that you thought, “Man, if I could only know how they feel about…” that would just solve a few of your problems, right? Well, Don’t Even Think About It is like that. Sarah Mlynowski takes readers on a light-hearted ride into that What if world and shows us the good as well as the bad.

Unfortunately, this book is all it’s cracked up to be. Sure it’s entertaining and stuff (I’ll get into it later) but many of it is half-assed. The characters feel so flimsy and their relationships even more so contrived. I couldn’t bring myself to believe any of them, especially between Cooper and Mackenzie. They all felt like they’re in grade five rather grade ten by the way the talk about their crushes as well as the way they talk to each other. Another problem that I had with Don’t Even Think ABout It, was the ending and how unrealistic it is.

It’s still such a fun story though. I loved the writing style, the “we” tense is something new to me and I only read it briefly in Two Boys Kissing and I enjoyed it. It made me feel like one of them. The mind reading was the best part of the novel, people think all the time and I loved how Mlynowski showed this by adding random thoughts as well as serious one to the bunch. I read how certain thoughts relieved as well as crushed the characters and how this strange yet awesome ability changed their lives in more than just one way.

Mylnowski creates a hilarious world with realistic thoughts and albeit the characters are a bit one-dimensional, I enjoyed reading their powers and all the things they could do because of them. I recommend this to anyone who’s looking for a novel that doesn’t involve too much thinking. Because you may never know who’s listening.

2.5 Mess Up Clouds
2.5 Mess Up Clouds

Book Review: And We Stay by Jenny Hubbard

17797364And We Stay by Jenny Hubbard

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Genre: Contemporary and Young Adult

Release Date: January 28, 2014

Pages: 240 (Hardcover)

good good

When high school senior Paul Wagoner walks into his school library with a stolen gun, he threatens his girlfriend Emily Beam, then takes his own life. In the wake of the tragedy, an angry and guilt-ridden Emily is shipped off to boarding school in Amherst, Massachusetts, where she encounters a ghostly presence who shares her name. The spirit of Emily Dickinson and two quirky girls offer helping hands, but it is up to Emily to heal her own damaged self.

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

opinion

 

When I read a novel where the main character has gone through some serious shit, I expect a few things. I expect a relatable/likeable character who has quite a few flaws. I expect a lot of emotion and confusion and above all, a lot of sympathy. I expect to love this book and feel as if I am apart of the story, that, this horrible thing that happened to the protagonist actually happened to me. I want to be in their shoes. And We Stay gives me a narration that left me more tired than anything.

And We Stay is written in the worst possible way. It’s third person present tense for crying out loud! It’s so simple and detached, the events that Emily goes through didn’t feel real to me in any way. Everything is told instead of shown and I couldn’t feel anything towards Emily and her life, even when she has sudden flashback about Paul, Albeit beautifully done, felt too simple and boring for me to care about too much.

Jenny Hubbard does know how to write beautiful poetry though. At the end of each chapter, readers are left with a beautiful poem that’s probably the most touching thing about the novel. The idea for this story is also very creative and intriguing. It was the mention of a shooting that initially drew me to the story and I enjoyed the few flashbacks where Paul is mentioned and the shooting because they are so very interesting.

Overall, Emily’s life is horrible. And my biggest problem with the novel isn’t the actual story idea but the execution of it. If the story was told in first person and maybe if it was all told in verse, it could have a great novel. I absolutely love gritty novels about horrible events that happen to teens. The story idea is awesome but I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone because I felt so apathetic towards most of it.

1.5 Odd Clouds
1.5 Odd Clouds