BOOK · REVIEW

The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco

THE BASICS:

Title: The Girl from the Well

Author: Rin Chupeco

Series: The Girl from the Well #1

Genre: Horror, Young Adult

Add it: Goodreads

Publication Date: August 5, 2014

My Rating: 4/5 Stars

GOODREADS SUMMARY:

You may think me biased, being murdered myself. But my state of being has nothing to do with the curiosity toward my own species, if we can be called such. We do not go gentle, as your poet encourages, into that good night. 

A dead girl walks the streets.

She hunts murderers. Child killers, much like the man who threw her body down a well three hundred years ago.

And when a strange boy bearing stranger tattoos moves into the neighborhood so, she discovers, does something else. And soon both will be drawn into the world of eerie doll rituals and dark Shinto exorcisms that will take them from American suburbia to the remote valleys and shrines of Aomori, Japan.

Because the boy has a terrifying secret – one that would just kill to get out.
The Girl from the Well is A YA Horror novel pitched as “Dexter” meets “The Grudge”, based on a well-loved Japanese ghost story.

MY TAKE:

“I am where the dead children go”

The Girl from the Well is is a story that I didn’t think I would ever read. When I read the blurd, which I seldom do, I was intrigued. Because I have so many questions. Was this the same ghost that the movie The Ring was based on?

This book was narrated by a ghost named Okiku who travels the globe in search for her next victim. Okiku is a vengeful spirit who attacks and kills humans who harm and murder children. And then there is Tark, a 15-year-old boy who has a mysterious past and weird arm tattoos. I also like the character of Callie, Tark’s cousin at some point but I also find her annoying.

The Girl from the Well takes inspiration from a Japanese legend, the same one Sadako from The Ring was based on. And at some point it also reminded me of The Grudge. The Ring and The Grudge both creeped me out.

Overall, The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco was great. I am not a fan of horror stories but this one really captivated me. It was a little bit scary at times, of course, and I would not recommend reading this at night, but it was the best kind of creepy I could have asked for.

In my opinion, Rin Chupeco’s debut was a success! Kudos!

BOOK

Royally Matched by Emma Chase


THE BASICS:

Title: Royally Matched

Author: Emma Chase

Series: Royally, #2

Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

Add itGoodreads

Publication Date: February 21, 2017

MY RATING: 4.5/5 STARS

GOODREADS SUMMARY:

Some men are born responsible, some men have responsibility thrust upon them. Henry John Edgar Thomas Pembrook, Prince of Wessco, just got the motherlode of all responsibility dumped in his regal lap. He’s not handling it well.

Hoping to help her grandson to rise to the occasion, Queen Lenora agrees to give him “space”—but while the Queen’s away, the Prince will play. After a chance meeting with an American television producer, Henry finally makes a decision all on his own:

Welcome to Matched: Royal Edition.

A reality TV dating game show featuring twenty of the world’s most beautiful blue bloods gathered in the same castle. Only one will win the diamond tiara, only one will capture the handsome prince’s heart.

While Henry revels in the sexy, raunchy antics of the contestants as they fight, literally, for his affection, it’s the quiet, bespectacled girl in the corner—with the voice of an angel and a body that would tempt a saint—who catches his eye.
The more Henry gets to know Sarah Mirabelle Zinnia Von Titebottum, the more enamored he becomes of her simple beauty, her strength, her kind spirit… and her naughty sense of humor. But Rome wasn’t built in a day—and irresponsible royals aren’t reformed overnight.

As he endeavors to right his wrongs, old words take on whole new meanings for the dashing Prince. Words like, Duty, Honor and most of all—Love.

MY TAKE:

“My story hasn’t written yet… but I know it begins with you.”

I am a HUGE fan of Emma Chase. If you haven’t read any of her books, you should start now. I am telling you, she is one of the best when it comes to naughty and hilarious male POVs. The first book of the series, Royally Screwed (review here) exceeded my expectations. So without further ado, presenting the newest addition to Emma’s awesomeness, Royally Matched! This is a part of Royally series that can be read alone.

The story starts after Prince Nicholas passed all his responsibilities as the next king of Wessco to his younger brother Prince Henry. When Prince Nicholas chose love over crown, Prince Henry has no other choice but to step into his shoes. This is reality TV show combined with fairytales. I used to watch reality TV shows plus who doesn’t love fairytales? So a group of 20 beautiful ladies invited to Prince Henry’s estate to win his heart. Interesting, right? But here is the catch, the one who will win his heart is not one of the participants. This reminds me of The Bachelor and Kiera Cass’ The Selection series.

I was not exactly sure how I feel about Henry in his own book. He was introduced in Nicholas’ book as wild character. It’s like he did not seem the type of guy who would settle down. However in his own book, we get to know more about him, he is fun, loyal not to mention that he is incredibly yummy. I love his wit and charm. Up next is Sarah, i love her, who am I not to love a character who loves to read like me? She is a nerdy bookworm who works as a librarian. She is simply endearing, sweet and smart. All the characters are enjoyable to read and I love the chemistry between Sarah and Henry. They were totally opposite but that’s why they were so great together.

Royally Matched is definitely a fun read! A great series with good humor and heart. Indeed Emma is one of the best! It makes my heart happy to read her books. Can’t wait for Royally Endowed!!! 😉

BOOK

Royally Screwed by Emma Chase

THE BASICS

Title: Royally Screwed

Author: Emma Chase

Series: Royally, #1

Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

Add itGoodreads

Publication Date: October 18, 2016

MY RATING: 4.5/5 STARS

GOODREADS SUMMARY:

Nicholas Arthur Frederick Edward Pembrook, Crowned Prince of Wessco, aka His Royal Hotness, is wickedly charming, devastatingly handsome, and unabashedly arrogant; hard not to be when people are constantly bowing down to you.

Then, one snowy night in Manhattan, the prince meets a dark haired beauty who doesn’t bow down. Instead, she throws a pie in his face.

Nicholas wants to find out if she tastes as good as her pie, and this heir apparent is used to getting what he wants.

Dating a prince isn’t what waitress Olivia Hammond ever imagined it would be.

There’s a disapproving queen, a wildly inappropriate spare heir, relentless paparazzi, and brutal public scrutiny. While they’ve traded in horse drawn carriages for Rolls Royces, and haven’t chopped anyone’s head off lately, the royals are far from accepting of this commoner.

But to Olivia, Nicholas is worth it.
Nicholas grew up with the whole world watching, and now Marriage Watch is in full force. In the end, Nicholas has to decide who he is and, more importantly, who he wants to be: a King… or the man who gets to love Olivia forever.

MY TAKE:

“I was known before I was born and my name will be blazoned in history long after I’m lost in the ground. Infamy is temporary, celebrity is fleeting, but royalty… royalty is forever.”

Emma Chase is back, baby! After Legal Briefs series and Tangled series which I totally enjoyed, here is another series which I am sure we will enjoy as well. Coz, Emma Chase never cease to surprise us.

Royally Screwed is the story of Prince Nicholas Arthur Frederick Edward Pembrook, the next in line to the Royal crown of Wessco. He is charming, hilarious, funny and gorgeous. The prince is used of getting whatever and whoever he wants, and when he visited New York, he met a hardworking girl named Olivia Hammond, she is taking care of her father and her younger sister while managing their coffee shop. Picture this, what do you think happens when Nicholas, who is used to get everything he wants, suddenly has to work hard for the woman who refuses to bow down him? Don’t let me spoil this out to you, read it. Lol

“I love you Olivia. I love you. And I don’t know how to do this. I don’t know how to let you go.”

Alternate POV of the main characters, i like it! This is a modern day Cinderella but it was not predictable. The story is super engaging even though you think the story is so familiar. But, who hates fairytale right? I super enjoyed the royalty aspect. I cannot contain this book. I devoured it in just one sitting. I was captivated from the start to end. Trully, Emma Chase is the rom-com queen. I cannot wait for Henry’s story!

BOOK

The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider

THE BASICS

Title: The Beginning of Everything

Author: Robyn Schneider

Series: N/A

Genre: young adult, contemporary, romance

Add itGoodreads

Publication Date: August 27, 2013

My Rating: 3.5/5 STARS

GOODREADS SUMMARY:

Golden boy Ezra Faulkner believes everyone has a tragedy waiting for them—a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen. His particular tragedy waited until he was primed to lose it all: in one spectacular night, a reckless driver shatters Ezra’s knee, his athletic career, and his social life.

No longer a front-runner for Homecoming King, Ezra finds himself at the table of misfits, where he encounters new girl Cassidy Thorpe. Cassidy is unlike anyone Ezra’s ever met, achingly effortless, fiercely intelligent, and determined to bring Ezra along on her endless adventures.

But as Ezra dives into his new studies, new friendships, and new love, he learns that some people, like books, are easy to misread. And now he must consider: if one’s singular tragedy has already hit and everything after it has mattered quite a bit, what happens when more misfortune strikes?

Robyn Schneider’s The Beginning of Everything is a lyrical, witty, and heart-wrenching novel about how difficult it is to play the part that people expect, and how new beginnings can stem from abrupt and tragic endings.

MY TAKE:

“Sometimes I think that everyone has a tragedy waiting for them, that the people buying milk in their pajamas are picking their noses at stoplights could be only moments away from disaster, that everyone’s life, no matter how unremarkable, has a moment when it will become extraordinary.”

Let me start this by saying, I liked it but I did not love it. It was not bad and definitely was not good either. I love Robyn, coz she is pretty cool. I met her during her PH tour with Melissa Kantor and Katie Cotugno 2-3 years ago. The Beginning of Everything started out well. I was hoping to give this book 5 stars but I just could not. The beginning of the book was amazing, full of humor and full of highschool typical everyday life and problems however in the middle of the book, it went to other direction and it was not that exciting anymore.

I like Ezra, the golden boy. The narrator. Awesome character. And Cassidy tho I was disappointed on what she did at the end, she is still somewhat likeable. Speaking of the ending, it broke my heart I was hoping it would leave me at the edge of my seat or happy maybe? It left me hanging with a hole in my heart, I guess I am really a sucker for a happy ending 😉

signed but not personalized

Tho this was another typical YA-contemporary book that will just add up to the growing list of books with the same plot which is ‘coincidence’, I would still recommend this to all who like John Green‘s books.

BOOK

Anatomy of a Misfit by Andrea Portes

THE BASICS

Title: Anatomy of a Misfit

AuthorAndrea Portes

Series: N/A

Genre: Young adult, contemporary, romance

Add itGoodreads

Publication Date: September 2, 2014

My Rating: 5 STARS

GOODREADS SUMMARY:

This emotional, hilarious, devastating, and ultimately triumphant YA debut, based on actual events, recounts one girl’s rejection of her high school’s hierarchy—and her discovery of her true self in the face of tragedy.

Fall’s buzzed-about, in-house favorite.

Outside, Anika Dragomir is all lip gloss and blond hair—the third most popular girl in school. Inside, she’s a freak: a mix of dark thoughts, diabolical plots, and, if local chatter is to be believed, vampire DNA (after all, her father is Romanian). But she keeps it under wraps to maintain her social position. One step out of line and Becky Vilhauer, first most popular girl in school, will make her life hell. So when former loner Logan McDonough shows up one September hotter, smarter, and more mysterious than ever, Anika knows she can’t get involved. It would be insane to throw away her social safety for a nerd. So what if that nerd is now a black-leather-jacket-wearing dreamboat, and his loner status is clearly the result of his troubled home life? Who cares if the right girl could help him with all that, maybe even save him from it? Who needs him when Jared Kline, the bad boy every girl dreams of, is asking her on dates? Who?

Anatomy of a Misfit is Mean Girls meets The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and Anika’s hilariously deadpan delivery will appeal to readers for its honesty and depth. The so-sad-it’s-funny high school setting will pull readers in, but when the story’s dark foreboding gradually takes over, the devastating penultimate tragedy hits like a punch to the gut. Readers will ride the highs and lows alongside funny, flawed Anika — from laughter to tears, and everything in between.

MY TAKE:

“It’s one of those dumb days where nothing’s really wrong but nothing’s really right either and the sky can’t even choose to be white or gray.”

I don’t know where to start, well I am not a fan of contemporary novels but I planned to read more. And also, I find it more challenging to write reviews for books that I love than those I dislike, maybe because if you dislike something you can usually point out a reason as to why you have a problem with whatever it was that did not sit well with you. After reading The Fall of Butterflies (review here) I immediately started this book, first, because it is sitting on my shelve for the longest time, second because I want to see more of Andrea Portes.

Let me start with Anika Dragomir, she is an inspirational character. I saw her improvement as I turned the pages. Though she is not that pleasant the first part or until the middle of the book, she is also foul-mouthed and judgemental. However, she is also funny and loyal to the people she loves. Maybe the main protagonist is not nice, but I think she is realistic.

The plot was okay, as I’ve said contemporary novels don’t need to have a complex one. Nothing out of the special. The writing is okay too. I love how Andrea made Anika’s voice very entertaining. One thing I need to emphasize, is that I DID NOT SEE THAT ENDING COMING! I mean the blub said, ‘ the devastating penultimate tragedy’, but who reads blurb? Definitely not me. LOL. I wont spoil it for you. I just want you to be ready.

You’re welcome, Andrea!

Overall, I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good and surprising read.

That’s all,

April

BOOK

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

THE BASICS

Title: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

Author: Jenny Han

Series: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #1

Genre: Young adult, contemporary, romance

Add itGoodreads

Publication Date: April 15, 2014

My Rating: 4.5 STARS


GOODREADS SUMMARY
:

Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control in this heartfelt novel from the “New York Times “bestselling author of The Summer I Turned Pretty series.

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once?

Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved–five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

MY TAKE: 

“My letters are for when I don’t want to be in love anymore. They’re for good-bye. Because after I write in my letter, I’m not longer consumed by my all-consuming love…My letters set me free. Or at least they’re supposed to.” 

I first read this book almost 3 years ago when it was just released, because I need to, because I was about to meet Jenny Han. This book was actually super engaging. I could not put it down. The story is super relatable. Even before, I am not a big fan of contemporary young adult romance, really not my type of book yet I found myself engrossed. I probably smiled the entire time, I was reading this.

I love all the characters! They were all good. Every one has a personality. Kitty, Lara Jean’s sister happened to be one of my favorite parts of the novel, she is cute. However, Margot annoyed me. I found Josh sweet and sometimes cold so I don’t know. And Peter, PETER!!! I love this guy. The main character, Lara Jean, she is likeable. I also love the short chapters, whenever I am reading book with short chapters, I feel like I am a fast reader which I am not.

The plot, this book is supposed to be light and fun so don’t expect a complex plot. So yeah.

Overall, I love this book better than Summer Trilogy. Such a sweet novel about family, friendship and love. You surely can count on Jenny Han when it comes to longing for more. #TeamKavinskyalltheway

That’s all,

April

BOOK

The Fall of Butterflies by Andrea Portes

THE BASICS

Title: The Fall of Butterflies

AuthorAndrea Portes

Series: N/A

Genre: Young adult, contemporary, romance

Add itGoodreads

Publication Date: May 10, 2016

My Rating: 4 STARS

GOODREADS SUMMARY:

Willa Parker, 646th and least popular resident of What Cheer, Iowa, is headed east to start a new life.

Did she choose this new life? No, because that would be too easy—and nothing in Willa’s life is easy. It’s her famous genius mother’s idea to send her to ultra-expensive, ultra-exclusive Pembroke Prep, and it’s only the strength of her name that got Willa accepted in the first place.

But Willa has no intentions of fitting in at Pembroke. She’s not staying long, she decides. Not at this school—and not on this planet. But when she meets peculiar, glittering Remy Taft, the richest, most mysterious girl on campus, she starts to see a foothold in this foreign world—a place where she could maybe, possibly, sort of fit.

When Willa looks at Remy, she sees a girl who has everything. But for Remy, having everything comes at a price. And as she spirals out of control, Willa can feel her spinning right out of her grasp.

In Willa’s secret heart, all she’s ever wanted is to belong. But if Remy, the girl who gave her this world, is slip-sliding away, is Willa meant to follow her down?

Andrea Portes’s incandescent, heartfelt novel explores the meaning of friendship, new beginnings, and the precarious joy and devastating pain of finding home in a place—a person—with wings.

MY TAKE: 

Review of the ARC provided by National Bookstore from a Twitter giveaway

“So you’re like… living in the margins, making your case in the margins, trying to make a difference maybe, from the margins…but nobody really wants to listen to you. To see you, ’cause you’re not the story they want to tell.”

The Fall of Butterflies is a standalone contemporary YA book. Though I was able to meet Andrea Portes during her PH tour (Thanks to National Bookstore!!!!), this is my first book by this author. And huge thanks to Harper Collins and National Bookstore for giving me an ARC because, Twitter. *winks*

I am not sure why I am having a hard time rating this book. Is it because I read it in just one sitting or is it because I can somehow relate to the main character? I don’t know. Anyhow, I love the writing style. It was odd, i know. Because Willa tells the story directly to you, to us, the reader, with her eccentric humor and an interesting view on life.

The characters. I love Willa definitely, because of her bizarre humor, the way she talks, the way somehow I can relate to her. When it comes to Remy and Milo? I like their story, I like that the author was able to emphasize that there are a lot of rich people who are not happy even though they can get all the material things they want.

Overall, I enjoyed the book. The ending was sudden and unexpected. The middle part kind of made me sleepy, thanks to Willa’s humor I was able to stay in the story. Definitely a good read! The character development as well as the narration will be the strenght of this book.

One question though, why the hell is it called The Fall Of Butterflies? I have no idea. Andrea?

❤,

April