Harry Potter and the Cursed Child book review

It’s Harry Potter time!

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I cannot tell you how I’ve been dreading this review. I’ve read plenty of reviews of this book and it almost feels like a broken record. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child came out this month and it’s been taking over the internet. I think we all know the plot line of this book so far, but I’ll give my own summary of it.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child follows Albus Potter and Scorpious Malfoy as they take on the legacies of their famous fathers. Albus, feeling lost and alone, befriends Scoprious, who everyone believes is Voldemort’s son. These two kids form a bond. As they progress in the school of Hogwarts, Albus starts feeling resentful of his father. So he steals a time turner and goes into the past with Scorpious to save Cedric Diggory.

I wasn’t really that enthused with this new book. I had a feeling that it wouldn’t live up to the other seven books, and I feel like I was partly right. But more on that later.

I actually didn’t preorder the book until two days prior to the release. I was waiting for this book talk with this author, Owen Sheers (“I Saw a Man”) when I just felt the urge to get the book. It was literally like someone spoke in my ear and told me to do it. Well, I would hardly call it magic since I have a problem with walking into a bookstore without buying a book.

The release party was really dull. There was a scavenger hunt but it didn’t really prove to be a challenge. Funniest part was when I had a group of people following me because they said that “I look like I know what I’m doing.” Hahahaha! Not exactly what I remembered for the other novel releases. But what did I expect? Nothing could compare to the releases of the original Harry Potter books.

On to the review!!!!

This book was great… until part 2. Honestly, this review is going to be about a lot of the feels and excitement I had. So be prepared!

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I love Albus and Scorious! Seriously, it’s like they changed the plot of Harry Potter and just made it about Harry and Draco.

Did this story seem a little familiar? I’m sure Back to the Future would have a say on that. (I only remember the first movie so you guys will have to help me out on which one I’m talking about.) And the friendship of Albus and Scorpious sounded a lot like Simon and Baz from “Carry On” by Rainbow Rowell. Or does Carry On sound like Harry Potter? Seeing as Harry Potter was first, I’d say the latter.

But comparing this to “Carry On” is actually a great way to summarize my feelings for this book. It was great fanfiction, but it seemed lacking in parts. Although I did love “Carry On” more than this book, which is saying something.

Anyways, the relationships are the best part of this book/play. It was great seeing Dumbledore’s Army all grown up. I’ve read a few reviews where people question the role of Ron in the play. I actually really liked seeing Ron, because he was my favorite character, besides Neville or Luna. Seriously, the scenes in the Ministry of Magic with “Ron” and Hermione were perfect!

I think the writing felt too much like terrible fan fiction and could have done better towards the end. The first part was okay, because there was a lot of relationship building, but the second part felt rushed and didn’t seem to serve that much purpose other than giving the story an ending.

This book was a quick read, so I powered through. I wouldn’t call it the best book or the worst book, but it’s definitely a book I would actually recommend for anyone still pining over the world of Harry Potter.

I understand that some people are upset that there will be no more Harry Potter after this, but the story is over. We all have to deal with it. If we go on and on about it, we will probably end up with something like this, where J.K. Rowling feels pressured by the fans to write more. And that doesn’t make for good literature.

It was fun seeing our old friends in this script, but don’t expect the best out of this book. Please go into it with an open mind and willingness to like something that is purely for entertainment than substance.

I’d give this book 3.5/5 stars.

The Shadow Queen by C.J Redwine book review

Seeing as how I’ve been writing several edits for my writing portfolio and reading, I thought I’d write more book reviews. So here is one about “The Shadow Queen” by C.J Redwine.

It’s another retelling of a fairytale story. I usually like those kinds of stories, but in regards to this one, I have very mixed feelings. I have an interesting thing on fairy tale stories, but that is for another post.

“The Shadow Queen” centers on this girl named Lorelei who is the true queen of Ravenspire. Nine years previous, her step mother, Irina, had brainwashed all of the kingdom to bow down to her. Lorelei, having similar powers, wasn’t subjected to this brainwashing. Irina thought she could trust her. Wrong. Lorelei worked a magic spell to stop the trance Irina had on the kingdom.

Once her father was aware of this, he ordered his guards to kill his wife. However, Lorelei didn’t think about how Irina would react to what she had done, so her family paid the consequences. Her father told her to look after her younger brother, Leo, right before he died. One of the palace guards, Gabril, helped the two kids escape, leaving Irina to believe they had both perished.

Nine years after this incident, Lorelei is preparing to take back her kingdom from the evil queen. The land is having a blight, which is caused by Irina’s insatiable need for power. Lorelei tries to slowly work her way up to overthrowing the queen when she comes across the mother and her kids. The woman she sees ends up murdering her kids and herself, to save them from the fate of starving to death.

Then she meets this guy named Kol, who is the King of Eldr. Eldr is a kingdom filled with dragons. They shift into dragon form and have two hearts. Their human heart governs their dragon hearts to give them empathy and justice. Otherwise they could easily just take control of every land.

Eldr is in grave peril when the Ogres start attacking. The dragons are having trouble keeping them out of the capital. The situation is so dyer that King Kol has to go to Ravenspire to seek help from the powerful witch, Irina. She makes a deal with him. His kingdom’s safety for the heart of the princess.

You basically know the rest of the story, if you’ve ever heard of Snow White.

This book had such a big hype around it and so I wanted to see if it was worth it. After finishing it, I have to say that I was very disappointed. The beginning did not grab me and I had to force myself to get into it. Halfway through I did get hooked, but near the end I just wanted it to be over.

It didn’t have that many good qualities for me. The biggest drawback was that it was SO PREDICTABLE!!! It took a lot of YA tropes and put them into this book. This book was not original in the slightest and I’m a little peeved that it’s going to be a series. I thought it ended there!!

Also, I was confused as to the relations of Irina and Lorelei. It kept referencing the sister of Irina in the beginning and it didn’t stick with me that it was because Lorelei was the daughter of her sister. It was really confusing.

Overall, I would give this book a 3/5 stars. And that’s being generous. I liked Kol’s character and Leo, but Lorelei was a little… typical of any YA novel out there.

The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater book review

This review is something I’ve wanted to do since I started the series. I was very intrigued by this series because it had Welsh elements to it. And what is that series that I’m talking about? It’s The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater. My friend told me the other day how reviews are a lot of gushing about the books and while I wanted to disagree, I really could not. Since that’s what I am going to do for some of this review. Most of the gushing will be in the spoiler section of this review.

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The series follows this girl named Blue who lives with a family full of psychics. She’s been told since birth that if she kisses her true love, he will die. So she avoids kissing in general. Then she meets the “Raven Boys.” These are boys from the private school named Aglionby. And you guessed it. Their mascot is a raven. Gansey, Adam, Ronan, and Noah are intertwined with Blue when they go looking for this Welsh King named Owen Glendower (Owain Glywndr in Welsh.)

Based in Virginia, the story centres on the fact that the Welsh took Glendower to Virginia to hide his body from the English. Because the body of Glendower was put on a magical ley line, its said that if you wake him up, you get a favour.

With this hunt for a magical king comes other magical elements. Other people are trying to find Glendower and most importantly, the Greywaren, which is supposedly this magical object that can make dream objects come to life. In this adventure story, we are shown snippets of information throughout each book.

This book was a great read. After I read the third book I felt like this was one of those overhyped books. And after finishing the fourth book, I do have to keep that opinion, but admit that it was pretty good to finish it. I heard somewhere on BookTube that it’s really a character based story and that plot works differently in this series. That was very much true for this series. Most of the story is based on character development bringing it forward.

I enjoyed this book a lot, but I wouldn’t say it was my favourite series. I would give this a 4.5/5 stars.

The fact that they were looking for a Welsh king was fun to read in Wales. I get to see the Welsh landscape every day and to think of the past in this fictional book was exciting. I did get to go to the Owain Glyndwr pub in Cardiff.

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Excuse the belly. Seriously, I am not pregnant. The shorts were a bit tight and so my belly stood out.

What was interesting for me was the fact that my copies were written in UK English. I only noticed when they would talk about going to a parking lot and they would call it car park. Or they spelled color like “colour.” I looked up why and apparently it’s because of publishing rights. It was published by Scholastic in the UK so it’s in UK English. I mean that was weird. They’re in Virginia and they’re calling a parking lot a car park? That was weird.

Spoiler Section

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The Fifth Wave Trilogy book review

I’ve been in a huge reading mode. I’ve read 30 books so far in the year 2016. I have talked about most of them on this blog and I will continue to post reviews on some of the upcoming books on my TBR list. This review has been a while in the works.

As you guys who follow any kind of Young Adult Literature know, this book was made into a movie. It follows this girl named Cassie who is fighting to stay alive. Aliens have taken over the planet, taking us out in waves. In a battle of humanity, the aliens have completely obliterated the idea of trust and cooperation.

Which book series is this? Yes, it’s the Fifth Wave series by Rick Yancey!

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This book reminded me of “The Host” by Stephanie Meyer. The aliens implant themselves in humans and seek to kill off humanity in order to take over the planet.

I enjoyed this book series. I did not particularly like the second book, but the third book really hit it for me. The first book was exciting to read. It was definitely a page turner.

However, I felt like the names were all really confusing. Maybe it’s because I read the second book months after reading the first book, but I felt like the nicknames got in the way of the story.

Speaking of the story, I didn’t understand exactly what was happening in the second book. I think it got confusing as to who were the aliens and how you can tell what was other.

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I loved the movie! Probably some people didn’t, but I did. It was exciting and I think made the book even better. And the guy who played Evan Walker was really cute. I loved Chloe Moritz as Cassie. I wasn’t sure at first when they announced who was going to play Cassie, but after seeing the movie, I’m impressed. Great job!

As an overall review, I would give the series a 3.5/5 stars. It was interesting to read, but I think it lacked clarity. I kept hoping that the final book would answer all my questions, but it just left me wondering what was actually happening. Pick this book up if you want a thrilling adventure that you have to imagine what actually happened. Also, I did not like the changing of perspectives. It was one of the reasons why it was so confusing.

I hope you liked this review. There will be more. The next one will be for The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stievater .

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A Court of Thorns and Roses series review (first two books) by Sarah J. Maas

My love for books knows no bounds. What I love doing more than reading (okay, probably the same as) is writing about books. So you’ve read so many of my book reviews in the past few days. WordPress has said that my stats has increased in the past day and I’m thrilled. So with the process of writing comes the flow that will not stop. Seriously, once I start writing, sometimes it’s hard to stop. If I stop, I’ll lose motivation. So I will write another book review.

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This book series is yet to be finished, but I really want to talk about it. It’s a really important book that everyone should read. Okay, not that important, but you should still read it. The book series is called “A Court of Thorns and Roses” by Sarah J. Maas. It follows this girl named Faeyre (I’m seriously naming my first child that if it’s a girl) who is a huntress. She kills a faerie and must live out her life as a prisoner in the faerie lands. The faerie who takes her “prisoner” is named Tamlin and is high lord of the Spring Court. Faerie lands are divided into seasons and times. For instance, there is a Night Court (which we will see more of in the second book), Day Court, Summer Court and Autumn.

Faeyre lives in luxury in Tamlin’s court while her siblings and father starve. Although Tamlin takes care of them. With this concept of faeries comes MAGIC. Tamlin can turn into a beast. If you’re familiar with “Beauty and the Beast” I’m sure you know where the story is headed. There is a blight in faerie magic and Tamlin is trying to fix it.

The first two books in the series are amazing. I was invested in the story from page one and the second book was not a disappointment. You know how most second books in a series *cough cough* New Moon *cough* have that “second book slump?” Well this one has the “second book spunk!” Okay I stole that from Sasha but whatever. Halfway through ACOTAR, we meet this guy named Rhysand who is very mysterious. He makes a pact with Faeyre near the end of the first book and things get crazy from there.

If you’ve read the “Throne of Glass” series that Maas also wrote, you might see a pattern in the way relationships are formed. You think that the first one is the true love, but then stuff happens and BAM! You no longer ship them and feels are had.

I think what I liked best, as I’ve said in most of my other reviews on different books, is characterisation!  The dynamic between Faeyre and her siblings are written in such a way that you can’t help feeling angry at the siblings. And the father is such an idiot!!!

If you are into faeries and fairy tales, you might like this series. I’m excited to see what happens next and can’t wait to get my hands on the next book.

I would give this a 5/5 stars for awesomeness! I was hesitant to start this book because I was unsure of the Beauty and the Beast element, but it was well worth it!

SPOILER SECTION!!!!

 

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The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson book review

It’s SUMMER!!! maxresdefault

Summer for me never really looked like this. I swear, it was mainly fog and cold… and I’m not even kidding. Because of the drought and global warming, my home now looks like summer, but it was not like this originally.

Nevertheless, I love summer. The idea that you’re free to do whatever you want is appealing to me. Even if I had to work or whatever, I still felt the draw of summer. So what does this mean for me? SUMMER CONTEMPORARIES!!!

It’s that time of year where readers sit back and read fluffy romance nonsense. Not that there is anything bad about those books, but summer contemporaries are easier to get into in the summer. I know, right? 🙂

So this summer I kicked off my contemporary streak with “The Unexpected Everything” by Morgan Matson. A story about a girl named Andie whose summer plans go out the window when her father, a congressman, is caught up in a scandal. Forced to find something else, Andie must face the fact that she is staying home for the summer. Home with her distant father who hasn’t been there for her since her mother died. Andie finds herself with a job walking dogs and more time on her hands. For someone who always has a plan, this idea scares her.

Plus, there’s a cute guy to boot… so why not check this book out?!

I never had that social life of a teenager. I always did some after school thing and then went straight home. I never really had a group of friends to do things with. So reading these kinds of books make me a little envious. But I do have some form of that now, in my early 20’s. Yeah, I’m reaching 25, but that’ll be in a year. Hey, I only JUST turned 24.

An interesting thing about Andie is that she never gets into a relationship for more than three weeks. She spends a lot of time, like me, crushing on someone longer than the relationship lasts. This changes when she meets Clark, this nerdy cute guy who writes fantasy novels.

What I loved about this novel was how it characterised each person. You have Bri, who loves movies. Palmer who is into stage managing. Toby who is in love with the idea of love. And you have the boys, Wyatt, Tom, and Clark. Even Andie’s dad is well written. I felt invested with the characters’ lives and their backstory. As a writer, I like to think about how other authors use flashbacks and loaded items, such as female hygiene products in the book.

The fact that the mom passed away five years prior was woven beautifully throughout the tale. The summer is a time when Andie’s relationship with her dad gets better and by the end you’re rooting for them both.

In the beginning of the book we have the stiff version of Andie that is glossed over for the magazines. She’s always conscientious about her image and how that will effect her dad’s campaign or job. Everything feels censored for her and we can tell that she’s going to need a lot of work if she’s going to fall in love, like you can predict from the synopsis of the book. It wouldn’t be a summer contemporary without romance and change.

This book does have emoticons, which is interesting to read. My eyes just kind of glossed over them, only briefly looking at what they were saying. I personally never use emoticons as much as normal people. I go on BookTube a lot and found this interview with the author about emoticons for the book. Check it out:

There were other videos of her from BEA, but I liked this one. I’ve only read this book of hers. But I’d be interested in reading more of her other books like “Since You’ve Been Gone” and “Amy and Roger’s  Epic Road Trip.”

Normally I would put up a spoiler review afterwards, but there’s not much else that I’d like to comment on. Terrible, I know, but I think I covered most of how I felt about this book. I enjoyed this book so much and I definitely recommend it to everyone. I do like the fact that Clark was wearing a Doctor Who shirt and having it seen through Andie’s eyes was awesome, since she is not a nerd. She didn’t even know the first shirt he wore was from Star Wars!!! Reminds me of this:

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I did a photoshoot with my friend the other day with the book… and a few others. They came out gorgeous!

So I hope you liked this review and don’t forget to subscribe! If you’ve read the book, feel free to comment your opinion below!

The Crown by Kiera Cass series review

Here goes nothing. I was planning on writing more scenes for my novel, but I feel really uninspired right now. So I thought I’d get to writing that review I keep meaning to get to. Well, one of them, at least. Maybe that’ll spark something in me to write more on my novel. I have most of the outline of it, but the actual scenes are just a bitch to write.

So the series I want to talk about is  the Selection Series by Kiera Cass. I know I wrote a review for the first three books and a review for The Heir but because the last book in the series has come out and I just finished it, I want to talk about the series, as a whole.

The last instalment in the Selection series is called “The Crown.” It’s basically what happens to Iliea (forgot how you spell that) while Eadlyn goes through her Selection. If you haven’t read the last two reviews I wrote, and you don’t want to read them just yet, let me recap what is happening. Basically twenty years after America and Maxon get married, the country of Iliea, which was formally the United States of America, is still in turmoil. With the taking down of the caste system, things were seeming to be okay. But there is a difference between social segregation and institutionalized segregation.

The difference being that society can’t really get over the caste system and tends to discriminate against people who were once fours or fives. Honestly, just think of the caste system as districts like in the Hunger Games and you’ll get it. Sort of.

So to help boost morale, Eadlyn, the oldest twin (literally came out a few minutes before her twin so technically she is the heir), gets put into a Selection. She must pick a husband from a random pool of guys all vying for her hand in marriage.

The book before the last book showed how things  have changed for Eadlyn and we get to see snippets of Maxon and America’s marriage. To hear my full review of The Heir, click on the link above.

I’ve already stated how much I hate Eadlyn. She is a complete brat and she is only likeable when she’s talking to her brother, which is few and far between. When she interacts with the servants or anyone “beneath” her, she is cold and indifferent. Such a change from the amazing portrayal of America in the first three books.

Through the Selection, Eadlyn shows some promise of compassion, but never enough that I miss the parts where she completely ignores the servants. She isn’t humble and the change Eadlyn has isn’t as powerful as I thought it’d be. Whenever people brought up the fact that the population of Iliea wasn’t in favor of her, I wanted to slap Eadlyn across the face and shout “duh! You’re too self centered and no matter what you’d still be this spoiled brat who can never be a humble servant for her people.”

As far as a review for the series as a whole, I have to give it a 3.5/5 stars. I was not impressed by the last two books and I don’t recommend reading the last two because honestly? If you’re looking for a typical happy ever after story, you just have to read the first three. The last two will change your perspective of the story.

The Crown was half assed and I felt like it was completely rushed. I mean, the book, in paperback form, is super small compared to most other final books in a series that I have on my bookshelf. I love Kiera Cass’ writing, but this book did not impress me. The ending felt rushed and definitely something that was only half thought of.

***Spoiler Section****

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Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Man! What a read! I know from most of these posts there has been a very informal speech to my reviews. I don’t do well in front of cameras so writing is the next best thing. I mainly just want to get my thoughts out there as fast as I can, so sometimes editing doesn’t take place within a certain amount of posts. So please expect this blog to be as informal as possible.

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So the book I just finished is called “Me Before You” by JoJo Moyes. It follows this girl The named Louise who loses her job at a café and then goes on to a carer for a quadriplegic guy named Will. Will, as it turns out, wants to end his life, so he strikes up a deal with his parents to end his life in six months. The parents employ Louise to help motivate him to change his mind. Both characters come from two different sides of the economical spectrum. Louis is from a working class family. Her parents barely scraping by, counting on the money she makes, while her younger sister gets to study with her seven year old kid. While Will is very affluent and lived a very prosperous life before his accident.

There’s going to be a movie in June!!!

This book focuses on what it means to be living and the many sides of assisted suicide. I went into this book hoping for the best. And yet, I knew by the end I would be crying for a while. I definitely would recommend this to anyone in need of something sort of like “The Fault In Our Stars” by John Green. The characters were so alive for me and the fact that it was located in the UK makes me really happy I read it abroad. I don’t think I would have gotten all of the little English-isms. Like the fact that they would talk in Celsius rather than Fahrenheit or that bum was a bad word. Lol. I just checked and I could take a bus to see that castle.

This book definitely gives you the emotional upheaval you will want if you’re anything like me and crave stuff like this. It’s a good cry. I will definitely read it again later.

I would give this book a 5/5 star rating  because it got me hooked from the very beginning and I loved Louise. And I’m super excited for the movie and I kept picturing the actors playing them and damn! On point!

Seriously though. sam-claflin-05

** Spoilery section **

So I did have one or two qualms about the book. Well, two really.

  1. I didn’t like the fact that we were given a different perspective for one chapter. It just felt weird. I just wanted to be in Louise’s head the whole way through. I thought her thoughts came across better than the others. Especially her sister’s chapter. I mean, I was hoping to have some sympathy towards this spoiled kid, but no.
  2. I understood why he needed to be there, but Peter’s character was just so… ugh. I felt like there should have been something still there, at least a little, to maintain that they were in a relationship.

Passenger (Book 1) by Alexandra Bracken book review

Usually I don’t review a book in a series till the series is complete, but I just can’t wait for this one. “Passenger” by Alexandra Bracken is an amazing book. It’s about time travel. This girl named Etta Spencer is a violinist. She’s practically a prodigy. When she goes to play for this benefit at the museum in New York, something strange happens. When she plays her song, she can hear this weird sound. Drawn to it, she embarks on this adventure through time. For she is no ordinary girl. She is a time traveler. It’s this hereditary thing and is governed by this big family, who are all basically evil people.

Etta is summoned by the head of the family and taken on board this ship, manned by this guy named Nicholas. They come from two different worlds and two different ethnicities. You think today’s society is racist? Try the mid 1700s, where slavery was legal. Etta must survive this ship and whatever is ahead of her if she has any hope of getting to her time and saving the people she loves.

This book has so much going on for it. I was a little confused at first, but once I got it, I was hooked. Definitely a book worth getting. The discourse between the families and Etta’s mom was very action packed and thrilling. Also, the romance between Etta and Nicholas… man that was awesome. I think any fan of Doctor Who will love this book.

I think one thing that I loved about this book was how it brought up the topic of time and how people who time travel can alter the future. It was also great when the subject of what the true timeline was. I mean, would the timeline that Etta knows still exist if they go and try to fix it?

So far, I am very thrilled to learn what happens later on in the series. This was one of the book series in which I will definitely have to reread once the entire series is out. I’m hoping that it be made into more than just three books. I love the idea of time travel and the characters are so well written that I’m hooked on finding out what happens to them.

Of course it’s too early to rate the series, but for the book itself, I give it 5/5.

To all the boys I’ve loved before by Jenny Han book review

I feel like I haven’t been reading that many contemporary novels that have nothing to do with fantasy or sci-fi. So I took a break from fantasy for a few days and read Jenny Han’s “To all the boys I’ve loved before” series. It’s about this girl named Lara Jean who writes a letter to every boy she’s ever loved. It’s a way of getting over someone. She doesn’t actually send them, but one day, they somehow get sent out. I mean one of those letters is to the boy next door, Josh, who is dating Lara Jean’s sister, Margot. Lara Jean is the middle child. Her two sisters Margot and Kitty are her two best friends in the world. When Margot goes off to college in Scotland, Lara Jean has to deal with the world on her own. She has to be the older sister Kitty looks up to and to make sure her dad is okay.

In order to make Josh feel jealous, Lara Jean fakes going out with one of the guys she used to love, Peter. Yeah, typical high school romance thing. I’m sure you can guess what happens next.

Lara Jean is your basic “stereotypical” housewife. Seriously, she bakes, she makes scrapbooks and she does all those things that basic housewives do. It’s all very nauseating. I know I was kind of a shut in like her, but man did I wish I had her skill to bake and to keep up a sort of independent life. I feel like most of my life was consumed by cleaning and making sure things weren’t messy, which they habitually were. Honestly, sometimes I feel like this book had the perfect home planned out. Even with a missing mother, their family seemed a little bit more perfect than I can imagine. I guess that’s what always goes through my mind whenever I read about these high school romances.

I was intrigued by the first book, but the second book felt like a waste. I mean, it was interesting to read, but I felt like it didn’t need to be said. I just felt like it was a one book thing. The characters were a bit too …. perfect. Seriously right out of your perfect suburban town. There is literally this place I’m thinking of where I associate people like that.

While I didn’t really think it needed a second book, I have to give it a 3.5/5 stars. It was a fun read, but nothing extraordinary.