Monday, 8 October 2012

What Have I Been Reading?

Hello Abandoned Blog of Mine! So I think it's safe to say that I completely abandoned this whole notion of blogging once a week, the truth is, that I've found that I tend to read fiction books in more like two days and I take the extra time to read more business-development types book (e.g. The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham) which take a lot more time and thought than curling up with a good book.

However, the following reviews will be coming soon! Maybe even today?!
  1. Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder
  2. Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder

And I'm going to be focused on The Intelligent Investor for the rest of the week and once I feel that I'm "allowed" to, I am going to dive into The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling...a book that's hype is entirely surrounding the author. I adore J.K. Rowling's writing style in that it seems like she knows every tiny bit of history about her characters. She seems like she hasn't considered my plea to simply never stop writing about the Harry Potter universe (my personal plea is for a series based when Lily/James/Snape/Sirius were at Hogwarts). So with that, I'm off to get ready for the day and I promise I will write up my reviews on the end of the Soulfinder Trilogy soon!

Monday, 17 September 2012

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder (Book #11)

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
Link: Good Reads

Locked in a coffin-like darkness, there is nothing to distract me from my memories of killing Reyad. He deserved to die--but according to the law, so do I. Here in Ixia, the punishment for murder is death. And now I wait for the hangman's noose.But the same law that condemns me may also save me. Ixia's food taster--chosen to ensure that the Commander's food is not poisoned--has died. And by law, the next prisoner who is scheduled to be executed--me--must be offered the position.

I picked this book up while browsing at Chapters, I spotted it on the shelf and after a quick check of reviews on Goodreads (I discovered it had a pretty favourable rating) I decided to give it a shot. I'll start off by saying that I was not disappointed that I picked it up and I currently have Magic Study (the second in the trilogy) waiting to be read! This book and the main character of Yelena are really interesting and I felt like the world/characters were fairly well developed in the areas they needed to be.

This book progressed at a steady pace, and I honestly had no idea what was going to happen from page to page - something I really appreciate when reading a story (it's no fun when you can guess the ending a hundred pages out). I felt like plot & character developments weren't obvious, and so, they happened extremely organically. I found it interesting of the entire world of Ixia, and particularly, the Commander, since it is very different then most books of this style.

What Type of Read Was It (One Word)? Well Written

Who would Enjoy this book? Someone who enjoys reading & fantasy (think Hunger Games, Insurgent, etc. etc. etc. {there are a million out there}), all three of these novels have been published (this one was originally from 2005) so it is a series that you can read all three back-to-back.

Will I read it again/The Sequels? Definitely yes to the sequels!!!

Overall Review: 4.5 out of 5 (Note: I really loved this book but I have hard time ranking it a 5 - which is what I ranked Divergent)

  1. Have you read Poison Study? What about did you like/ didn't like?
  2. What do you think is the key to character & plot development to have an organic feel?

Web of Angels by Lilian Nattel (Book #10)

Web of Angels by Lilian Nattel
Link: Good Reads

On the surface of things, Sharon Lewis is a lot like any other happily married mother of 3: she is the beating heart of a house full of kids, cooking and chaos, the one who always knows the after-school practice schedule, where her husband put the car keys and who needs a little extra TLC. Her kids and husband think she's a little spooky, actually, the way she can anticipate the tensions of any situation--and maybe they love her all the more for the extra care she gives them.
Life is definitely good until the morning Heather Edwards, a pregnant teenaged friend of the family, kills herself. The reverberations of that act, and the ugly secrets that sparked it, prove deeply unsettling to the whole family, and stir up Sharon's own troubling secret: she has DID, or dissociative identity disorder. And the multiples inside the woman the world knows as Sharon seem to know what happened to Heather, and what may be happening to Heather's surviving sister. Will Sharon's need to protect the innocent cause her to finally come clean about her true nature with her family and friends, and not just in the anonymous chat rooms on the web where she's connected to others like herself? Will a woman with DID be able to persuade her quiet and respectable community that evil things can happen even in the nicest homes?

I picked this book up on a whim, I thought the book was about loss & death and was intrigued. Well, after buying it and reading some reviews, I discovered that it was about a woman with Dissociative Identity Disorder, "DID" - a subject that I only know about from a high school psychology course & watching "The United States of Tara" (which is not exactly a lot of education on the subject).  This book took a little while to get into, you do have to pay attention to it and I wasn't instantly "hooked" into reading it.

I really enjoyed reading this; this book was well developed and was told in such an incredibly realistic story that I could easily believe this happening in any small suburb. As the book continued, more was revealed about each character, and I feel like the DID was well explained and it was understand the main character and her stories.

I feel like this book is the definition of a "mature" book, although it obviously has an interesting story, it truly is about adults and this particular situation, which was partly why it was so realistic.

What Type of Read Was It (One Word)? Realistic

Who would Enjoy this book? If you're curious on the subject of DID, I would absolutely recommend this book.

Will I read it again? Maybe.

Overall Review: 5 out of 5.

  1. Have you read Web of Angels? What about did you like/ didn't like?
  2. Which do you prefer, a realistic book or a book that's a bit outlandish?

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Beneath the Glitter by Elle & Blair Fowler (Book #9)


From internet stars Elle and Blair Fowler comes a scintillating new novel that takes readers Beneath the Glitter of the glitzy L.A. social scene.
Welcome to a place where dreams are made.  And where nothing—and no one—is ever what it seems.
After their make-up and fashion videos went viral on YouTube, sisters Sophia and Ava London are thrust into the exclusive life of the Los Angeles elite.  Here fabulous parties, air kisses, paparazzi and hot guys all come with the scene. Sophia finds herself torn between a gorgeous bartender and a millionaire playboy, and Ava starts dating an A-list actor.  But as they’re about to discover, the life they’ve always dreamed of comes with a cost.
Beneath the glitter of the Hollywood social scene lies a world of ruthless ambition, vicious gossip…and betrayal.  Someone close to them, someone they trust, is working in the shadows to bring the London sisters falling down. And once the betrayal is complete, Sophia and Ava find themselves knee-deep in a scandal that could take away everything they care about, including the one thing that matters most—each other.


I picked up this book mostly out of pure curiosity, I had to know what the book was like and I wanted to be impressed by Elle and Blair's foray into writing -and of course, I was curious to know what their life is really like. In that sense, I was completely disappointed, despite a blurb at the beginning thanking their fans on YouTube for all the support, the sisters' making videos is barely even mentioned in the book. This books is really just a story about two girls living in LA and each of them being interested in two guys. I think I would have been a lot happier if they had just written an autobiography...maybe one day!

I think I expected different things from the book, I expected a novel about Elle & Blair, and I got an incredibly predictable story aimed at tween girls. Obviously, I'm not the target audience! I found the "fights" to be pretty random and unfounded, and the best way to describe it was there was a lot of "telling, not showing". I'm not sure how old the girls are in the book but it just surprised me how immature they both are. It made me think that what was "beneath the glitter" didn't go very deep. 

However, I will give this book two stars, for a few reasons: 1. this book wasn't what I was expecting and I can't fault it for not living up to what I wanted the book to be and 2. Despite not being the next War and Peace, one section of the book made me really sympathize with Elle & Blair. The one line was during a photo shoot when Ava wonders what they even did to deserve being so successful, and that she feels like a fraud. That one tiny part made me feel for them immensely. The book itself though? A lot of telling, not showing, i.e. "Ava's mad (and we're not going to explain why or how she got this way, she's just mad!!)" 

What type of read is it? Simple

Would I recommend this book? No.... I wouldn't recommend this to book to myself, but I'm sure that there's an audience of girls who would love this and be more obsessed with the social lives than business lives. 

Will I read it again/the sequels? Probably not...maybe if I see the paperbacks on a $5 special.

What's "beneath the glitter"? Modpodge that the glitter was stuck to.

Overall Review: 2/5 stars

  1. Did you read Beneath the Glitter? What about it did you like? Didn't like?
  2. How do you feel when you read a book that is different than you thought it would be? Do you keep reading it or do you give up?
Do you have any recommendations for me to read next? Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Quickie Updated

Once again... a list of books you can expect a review from in the coming weeks:

  1. Web of Angels by Lillian Nattel
  2. Beneath the Glitter by Elle and Blair Fowler

Sunday, 19 August 2012

The Help by Kathryn Stockett (Book #2)

Links: Good Reads

Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.
Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.
Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody's business, but she can't mind her tongue, so she's lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.
Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.


Despite having an incredibly serious subject that could get really dark and hopeless at times, it remains a somewhat light, relatable easy read. I finished this book over about four different reading sessions, but if I'd had my way, it would have been three. I was so engrossed in The Help for the last half of the book, I didn't want to put it down, I had to know what happened. This is the primary reason why I give this book 5/5 - I literally had to force myself to put it down, it didn't alienate me in a subject I (unfortunately) know very little of, and each character seemed to have a whole backstory that I was just itching to find out. I love it when you can tell that the author knows so much more about their characters than what's written in the novel, and that's how I felt about The Help.

Who would enjoy this book? I believe almost anyone would, but primarily women, as I just shortly realized after finishing it that the only main characters are women, every man is only a secondary character.

What type of read is it (one word!)? Engrossing.

Would I recommend this book? Absolutely!

Which character was my favourite? Skeeter

Will I read it again? Probably, I hope that if I read it again, I will find new details that I skimmed over before.

Review (in related to my reading style): This book is one of the best examples as to why I will sometimes blindly pick up a book to read based purely on buzz, I always figure that if there's buzz about a book, it must be good. I picked up this book based on the buzz and I wasn't disappointed!

Overall review: 5/5

This post got deleted somehow, it was originally posted back in June.

Update From My Mind: Books to read?

It is Sunday morning and I am settling in for a relaxing day of cleaning and preparing for the work week, I recently finished Web of Angels by Lilian Nattel and will be writing a review soon. I am debating whether or not to pick up Where We Belong by Emily Giffin as it is a novel that came out very recently and once I read it, I'll have basically no books of hers left unread (except for Baby Proof) Perhaps I should just go into my local Chapter's and pick something from the "Top Read" list....

In short, I do have books I want to read, but I am looking for some inspiration, so if you have any idea, please let me know!

How is your Sunday going? Hope you are well. 

Gossip Reader

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Something Blue by Emily Giffin (Book #8)

Something Blue by Emily Giffin
Link: Good Reads

Darcy Rhone has always been able to rely on a few things: Her beauty and charm.  Her fiance, Dex. Her lifelong best friend, Rachel.  She never needed anything else. Or so she thinks until Dex calls off their dream wedding and she uncovers the ultimate betrayal. Blaming everyone but herself, Darcy flees to London and attempts to re-create her glamorous life on a new continent. But to her dismay, she discovers that her tried-and-true tricks no longer apply--and that her luck has finally expired. It is only then that she can begin her journey toward redemption, forgiveness, and true love.

There was apparently a lot of people who were unsure if they could like a book from Darcy's perspective after reading Something Borrowed (which I read last year), I can completely understand but there's something in this book that just feels like there's a part missing, like the only reason why Darcy decides to change is because a book was written from her perspective and at some point she would need to. It's also incredibly frustrating that she doesn't move to London until about halfway through the book (or so it felt like), this isn't a spoiler, it's in the synopsis on the back of the book! Since you are completely aware that this will happen, everything before it seems like you're just waiting for it to happen, I wasn't rooting for Darcy before that. 

Maybe if I hadn't read the synopsis, I would have enjoyed this book but I was only really surprised once. The rest was just incredibly predictable. This book is probably the definition of "Beach Read", it's light, airy, doesn't require much concentration and you can just breeze through it. If you're looking for a book to read while you're lounging in the sun, and if you've read Something Borrowed, I recommend you pick up this book to absorb another one of Emily Giffin's addicting books.

What type of read is it (one word!) Easy

Who would enjoy reading this book?  Someone lounging on a beach

Will I read it again? No.

Do you prefer light easy reads over substance? I think light books have a place, not every novel has to change your perspective on life, sometimes they're just fun. I would never say that I'd completely scold either types of books, reading should cover all sides of the spectrum. 

Overall review: 3.5/5

  1. Did you read Something Blue? What about it did you like? Didn't like?
  2. Do you prefer light easy reads over deep important novels?
Do you have any recommendations for me to read next? Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks (Book #7)

The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
Link: Good Reads

When U.S. Marine Logan Thibault finds a photograph of a smiling young woman half-buried in the dirt during his third tour of duty in Iraq, his first instinct is to toss it aside. Instead, he brings it back to the base for someone to claim, but when no one does, he finds himself always carrying the photo in his pocket. Soon Thibault experiences a sudden streak of luck—winning poker games and even surviving deadly combat that kills two of his closest buddies. Only his best friend, Victor, seems to have an explanation for his good fortune: the photograph—his lucky charm.
Back home in Colorado, Thibault can’t seem to get the photo—and the woman in it—out of his mind. Believing that she somehow holds the key to his destiny, he sets out on a journey across the country to find her, never expecting the strong but vulnerable woman he encounters in Hampton, North Carolina—Elizabeth, a divorced mother with a young son—to be the girl he’s been waiting his whole life to meet. Caught off guard by the attraction he feels, Thibault keeps the story of the photo, and his luck, a secret. As he and Elizabeth embark upon a passionate and all-consuming love affair, the secret he is keeping will soon threaten to tear them apart—destroying not only their love, but also their lives.
Filled with tender romance and terrific suspense, The Lucky One is Nicholas Sparks at his best—an unforgettable story about the surprising paths our lives often take and the power of fate to guide us to true and everlasting love.

The Lucky One was an entertaining, semi-predictable love story. I've read a few of Nicholas Sparks' novels and (honestly) always wound up sort of disappointed, I unfortunately find the stories to be predictable and I've yet to just fall in love with a story that I can't put it down. I feel like in all of Nicholas Sparks novels, he has characters that are one-dimensional and on the extreme side of the spectrum and The Lucky One is hardly any different. However, one thing that I can point out is that I actually really liked both Thibault & Elizabeth and was happy that they found each other.

Nicholas Sparks' can write incredibly loveable "perfect" men that you just easily fall in love with. It's the one thing I would say he can consistently do well because often I find that his female leading ladies are all waiting to be rescued and can be frustrating. This book was a quick, easy read, I flew through it, not because I could hardly put it down, but more because it was short and not complicated.

What type of read is it (one word!) LoveStory

Who would enjoy reading this book?  Anyone who enjoys a non-complicated love story a-la-Nicholas Sparks

Will I read it again? No.

Do you sacrifice other developments for the one "core" story (for Sparks: the love story)? When a novel does this, I just feel like it's unnecessary. The Time Traveler's Wife (one of my favourite novel) is also a love story but it has so much more to the story and characters, that they all felt like real people.

Overall review: 3.2/5

  1. Did you read The Lucky One? What about did you like? Didn't like?
  2. Are you a fan of Nicholas Sparks' Love stories? What is your favourite one? Which should I give a shot?
Do you have any recommendations for me to read next? Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Heart Of The Matter by Emily Giffin (Book #6)

Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin
Links: Goodreads

Tessa Russo is a stay-at-home mother of two young children and the wife of a renowned pediatric surgeon. Valerie Anderson is an attorney and single mother to six-year-old Charlie—a boy who has never known his father. Although both women live in the same Boston suburb, they are strangers to one another and have little in common, aside from a fierce love for their children. But one night, a tragic accident causes their lives to converge in ways no one could have imagined.

This is the moving, luminous story of good people caught in untenable circumstances. Each being tested in ways they never thought possible. Each questioning everything they once believed. And each ultimately discovering what truly matters most.

I was completely conflicted while reading this book. The book is told by two women's points of view and I just found each one extremely likeable so it wasn't clear who I wanted be rooting for more. This book was really a testament to what real life is like, how no one's life is perfect, and how everybody has problems and issues and just wants what's best for the ones they care about most. And, like in life, I wanted everyone to get what they wanted, but when one person will clearly win and one will clearly lose, unfortunately, you can't have it both ways. 

Although I wasn't as "addicted" to this book as other ones I've read, this definitely had some of the most developed characters I've encountered in Emily Giffin's novels (and you get to re-visit some old favourite characters!), this book's subject matter was a bit more serious and a bit less, for lack of a better word, 'obvious'. Sometimes when you're reading books, you can see the end a hundred pages out, while with this book, I had no idea how it was going to end and I just wanted to spend more time with the characters. 

What type of read is it (one word!) Developed

Who would enjoy reading this book?  Everyone! 

Will I read it again? Absolutely! I could see myself re-reading this in a year or two.

(Book club question) Why do you think women judge each other so much when it comes to personal decisions about work, motherhood, relationships? I think women constantly judge each other because we are incredible competitive, when we judge each other, we are able to decide that we are the winner. 

Overall review: 4.5/5


  1. Did you read Heart of the Matter? What about did you like? Didn't like?
Do you have any recommendations for me to read next? Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Love The One You're With by Emily Giffin (Book #5)

Love The One You're With by Emily Griffin
Link: Goodreads

Ellen and Andy's first year of marriage doesn't just seem perfect, it is perfect. There is no question how deep their devotion is, and how naturally they bring out the best in each other. But one fateful afternoon, Ellen runs into Leo for the first time in eight years. Leo, the one who brought out the worst in her. Leo, the one who left her heartbroken with no explanation. Leo, the one she could never quite forget. When his reappearance ignites long-dormant emotions, Ellen begins to question whether the life she's living is the one she's meant to live. 
Love the One You're With is a powerful story about one woman at the crossroads of true love and real life.

This book had me hot and cold towards the main character, at first, I just couldn't sympathize with her acting like an ex-boyfriend was more important than her husband (even though she was obviously conflicted), especially considering how nice and sweet her husband really was. So when I first started reading it, it just seemed like she was restless and I didn't appreciate what she had.

As the book goes on, I did start to provide more sympathy to her and the story became more and more interesting. If there's one thing Emily Giffin can do, it's write an amazing story that you just can't put down. I finished this book over a weekend and I became so absorbed in the story, that I just couldn't put it down. I finally finished it one morning by staying in bed and flying through the last 50 pages.

The ending of this book really redeemed itself from I felt about it at the beginning, and if there's one thing I have to say, it's that you should give this book a shot if you want to put it down after the first few chapters.

What Type of Read Was It (One Word)? Obsessive

Who would Enjoy this book? If someone enjoys reading and is out of things to read, they'd probably like this book.

Will I read it again? Probably not.

Overall Review: 3.5 out of 5.


  1. Have you read Love The One You're With? What about did you like/ didn't like?
  2. Can you persist through a book if you're frustrated with the main character or do you give up?

Last Comment: Are all of Emily Giffn's novels about people cheating??

Quick Update

Hello everyone! I realize that I seem to have neglected this blog, but just to let you know that I did keep reading. I read a few business development books and I wasn't quite sure how/if I wanted to blog a review on them....

But, to provide you some comfort, I have read/will write a review on the following:

  1. The Heart of The Matter by Emily Giffin
  2. Love The One You're With by Emily Giffin
  3. The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
In addition to these, I read two business development books.

Thanks everyone, 

Gossip Reader

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Insurgent by Veronica Roth (Book #4)

Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Links: Good Reads

One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth's much-anticipated second book of the dystopian Divergent series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature.
I downloaded this book to my tablet immediately after finishing Divergent, I wanted more of the story and I couldn't wait to read this one. My overall review was that it was entertaining and there were great dimensional characters but it didn't have the intrigue that the first one did and I predicted some of the plot movements fairly ahead of schedule. You do get to learn more about the other factors, which was appreciated. Veronica Roth also continued her story-telling ability that you can't even put down the book it's so good and you can't wait for the next novel.

If there's one thing Veronica Roth does well it's creating dimensional characters and adhering to the belief that nobody is "all good" or "all bad" - even the main character and her love interest have faults. So although I enjoyed Insurgent and the characters were dimensional, I was left wanting more from fleshing out the world and making it more believable. The novel didn't truly explain how divergents exist and what causes them, which I feel would have provided some satisfaction. I'm only going to give this novel a 4 out of 5 because I had such high hopes of the world exploding into detail in this novel and I just felt unsatisfied and like there weren't clever enough explanations.

What type of read is it (one word!) Entertaining

Who would enjoy reading this book? 
If you enjoyed Divergent, then definitely pick up this novel as it continues the story 

Will I read it again? Possibly, I might re-read both novels before the third and final in the series comes out. This novel was a quick read.

Which dimensional character was I rooting for most? Peter 

Overall review: 4/5


  1. Have you read Insurgent? What about it did you like and/or didn't like?
  2. Do you love characters that are neither "all good" or "all bad" or do you prefer easier characters to identify which you like and which you hate?
Do you have any recommendations for me to read next? Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Divergent by Veronica Roth (Book #3)

Divergent by Veronica Roth

In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves… or it might destroy her.

I picked up this book on the fact that any time I heard someone read it, they finished it either the same day or within two days. It took me two days, but I definitely enjoyed it. The entire plot is fast moving and except for a few items that I half-predicted, the rest is extremely interesting with turns around every corner. I think the reason I loved reading this book so much was because it never got boring, there was never a lull in the storytelling, everything was always happening fast. The story is fascinating and I just lapped it all up and couldn't wait to find out what would happen next.

Although I loved this book and it was had some flaws in it, like that I wished they had gone into more detail about the other factions, or explained more why the society was the way it was. Tris is extremely developed but some of the other characters seem fairly one-dimensional in the story telling. A part of me thinks though that this world could be like Harry Potter, that the first book is fairly short and simple but then as it becomes popular, the author becomes less edited and the world just explodes with more details, I hope that's the case because I'm going to download Insurgent today!  

Overall, this book probably had one of the best storytelling fast-moving books I've read, which is why I'll give it a 5.

What type of read is it (one word!) Fastmoving

Who would enjoy reading this book? Any body who enjoyed The Hunger Games / Dystopian style novels would probably also love this book.

Will I read it again? Maybe, I'm in the middle of the fence on that. Although it's interesting, I think this book would always be best the first time you read it.

What Faction would I be in? I don't think I could be in Dauntless (I'm not confrontational enough) or Amity (I'd get bored!), I think I would be between Candor (sometimes I'm too honest and can't hold my tongue) and Euridite (I love learning), I'd like to think that I have a lot of Abegnation in me, but I honestly think I'm too selfish.

Review (in related to my reading style): This book moved so quickly, I wanted to keep learning more about the story, there weren't that many characters that I truly grew attached to, but the story was so good and interesting, it didn't really matter.

Overall review: 5/5

  1. Have you read Divergent? What about it did you like and/or didn't like?
  2. Do you like a book that's plot is so fast moving you can never tell what's coming up next? Or would you prefer if the book had taken it's time and provided more detail to the background?
Do you have any recommendations for me to read next? Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Friday, 8 June 2012

The Fame Game by Lauren Conrad (Archive #1)

The Fame Game by Lauren Conrad

In Hollywood, fame can be found on every corner and behind any door. You just have to know where to look for it. Nineteen-year-old Madison Parker made a name for herself as best frenemy of nice-girl-next-door Jane Roberts on the hot reality show L.A. Candy. Now Madison's ready for her turn in the spotlight and she'll stop at nothing to get it. Sure, she's the star of a new show, but with backstabbing friends and suspicious family members trying to bring her down, Madison has her work cut out for her. Plus, there's a new nice girl in "reality" town—aspiring actress Carmen Price, the daughter of Hollywood royalty—and she's a lot more experienced at playing the fame game... When the camera's start rolling, whose star will shine brighter?

Filled with characters both familiar and new, Lauren Conrad's series about the highs and lows of being famous delivers Hollywood gossip and drama at every turn.


I picked this book up because I’d read all three LA Candy books and I thought there might be something interesting about it. I read LA Candy because I’ve never been on a reality show and I wanted to see what the behind-the-scenes would be like, that’s the same reason why I read A Model Summer by Paulina Porizkova two summers ago, I didn’t know what it was like in that world and I was curious. If you’ve read LA Candy, and unless you’re obsessed with Lauren Conrad and want to gobble up anything she makes, you can skip this one. If you haven’t read LA Candy, you can give this one a shot.

The book has familiar characters from the old series (Madison Parker & Gaby Iforgetherlastname) and some new ones but I just couldn’t find myself interested in any of the characters. You could see the next plot point eight chapters ahead and, because I’d read LA Candy, I didn’t have any sympathy/surprise for the characters when things happened that you knew were going to happen anyway! I found Madison more likable in this book but not what I wanted, I would have preferred if she was a true villain who was still calling magazines to get covers and was more obsessed with the tabloid/ “real” world than the reality show, Lauren Conrad covered reality shows in LA Candy and this book didn’t really add anything to the game.

What I didn’t like about this book: It was predictable, characters were one-dimensional, but maybe, maybe, one could be considered two-dimensional by the end.

What I liked about this book: It was an easy read, the plot was semi-interesting (hey, I finished it!)

Who would enjoy this book? Anyone who is obsessed with Lauren Conrad and will gobble up anything she touches. Or, if you haven’t read LA Candy, you might get more excitement out of this book than I did.

What type of read is it (one word!)? Easy

Would I recommend this book? It’s easy, holds your attention, but you don’t think that much about it after. If you haven’t read LA Candy and , you might get more out of this. I wouldn’t give it a ringing endorsement though.

Which character was my favourite? Madison was the most interesting, but she was a 3/5 when every one else hovered around 1 or 2.

Will I read it again? Nope.

Review (in related to my reading style): I think this proves that if I read a book about something I want to know more about once, I don’t need to read the same style of book again, unless I really care about the plot.

Overall Review: 2/5

Monday, 28 May 2012

Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner (Book #1)

Book #1: Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner

The lives of four very different women intertwine in unexpected ways in this new novel by bestselling author Jennifer Weiner (In Her Shoes; Best Friends Forever). Each woman has a problem: Princeton senior Jules Wildgren needs money to help her dad cure his addiction; Pennsylvania housewife Annie Barrow is gasping to stay financially afloat; India Bishop yearns to have a child, an urge that her stepdaughter Bettina can only regard with deeply skepticism until she finds herself in a most unexpected situation. Interlocking dramas designed to ensnare; bound to be a bestseller.
Time to Read: 1.5 days


Once I started reading this book, I had a hard time putting it down, even when one of my friends came over to my house for a visit, I found myself looking back at the book on my coffee table, wondering what the characters were up to. This book was about something that I know next to nothing about: surrogacy. It's told from the perspective of four different women, who are all involved in a surrogacy to create a baby: the egg donor, the surrogate mother, the mother, the mother's stepdaughter (and godparent). I 

The characters are interesting, but if there was one character I never quite got connected to it's Annie Barrow, who is the surrogate mother and actually carries the baby. Maybe it's because I can't identify with someone who only ever saw themselves as a mother, since I'm not at that point in my life even though we're the same age! (24) The characters I was always excited about when it came to their chapter were: Jules and India. Jules has a revelation about halfway through the book and she is just an extremely interesting character whose life is nothing like mine.  Jules is described as extremely beautiful and has a father whose battling addiction, and the way that she loves her father, is uncomfortable in her own skin, and feels just different then everyone else is really interesting. In the first chapter (I think!) of the book, she describes how she feels like she's lying to guys when they check her out, like she's not really what they think she is, which to me is interesting because who could you feel like you were lying about what you look like? India was interesting just because she had a fascinating life and was determined to be the best in her life no matter what, I actually quite liked India, which is why I maybe never was captivated by Bettina.

Bettina was also okay but I just wasn't hooked by her, I actually liked India and she was one of my favourite characters.

I've read a few reviews and if there's one thing I agree with, it's that the book ends a bit unrealistically. 

Overall, I liked the book and I would recommend it to anyone who wants a quick, easy happy read. There wasn't anything in particular about the book that truly grabbed me, which is why it only gets a 4/5. However, I could barely put it down, so you have to give credit to the author for that.

Review (In related to my reading style): Then Came You actually made me really interested in reading a book about a character like Jules, so if you have any recommendations, please leave it in the comments or send me a message. I learned that I really love books that are told from different characters' perspectives and whose lives are so vastly different but then they are brought together in some way. In my opinion, books like that are more interesting to read than ones that the characters are obviously intertwined, e.g. family, friends, schoolmates, etc.

WeekToRead's Ranking: 4/5 

Next week...

A Game Of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
Current Progress: Page 208 

Comment: I will read/finish this book!! I know that a lot of people love it, so this is going to be my kick to actually finish it.

  1. Have you read "Then Came You"? What about it did you like? Didn't like?
  2. When books have unrealistic endings in the real world, do you just sort of accept it or does it actually make you dislike the book?

Do you have any recommendations for me to read next?! Please send me a message if you do, I'm open to all suggestions.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Day One Week One - Allie's First Reading List

Welcome to my humble little corner of the web! I love reading and this is my declaration to the internet that I am going to finish at least one book every week for the next 365 days (which is 52 weeks 1 day)

Here is a current list of books that I'd like to read:

  1. Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner
  2. Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
  3. A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
  4. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by David Eggers
  5. Southern Charm by Tinsley Mortimer
  6. 127 Hours (Between a rock and a hard place) by Aaron Ralston
  7. Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer
  8. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  9. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  10. The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory
  11. The Virgin's Lover by Philippa Gregory
  12. The Boelyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory
  13. Innocence by Kathleen Tessaro
  14. Water for Elephants by Sara Cruen
  15. Something Borrowed by Emily Griffin
  16. 50 Shades Freed by E.L. James
  17. The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks

As your can tell, I have a wide arrangement of interests from Young Adult to Historical Fiction to Mountain Climbing Adventure Stories but that's why I like reading so much, it allows you to not be limited and to explore whole different worlds that you wouldn't otherwise be exposed to. And honestly, about all but 4 of these books I already own and just need to read. I picked up Then Came You today on a whim while shopping at my favourite bookstore when I was little so hopefully that will be the first tick off. I also read I am a Pole (and so can you!) by Stephen Colbert while waiting in line, but I don't think that one counts!

Here's the plan
  1. Post each Sunday what book I will be reading / finishing that week
  2. I'm obviously allowed to read more than one book at a time but my goal is to finish one a week.
  3. Have at least one weekday evening and one weekend "time slot" (morning, afternoon, or evening) dedicated to reading/immersing myself in what I'm reading.
    1. This is me being selfish, because it's honestly one of my favourite things to do and I want to make sure I make time for it!
  4. Post a review of the book and what I thought about it (be personally accountable!) by Sunday.
  5. Constantly be updating my "Week to Read" Reading List with new books I want to read, I've never reached a point that I didn't want to read something.
  6. Re-read some of my favourites and post reviews on them.
  7. Post reviews on the "Archives" of books I've already read.
So lovelies, that's it! I'm going to curl up for the rest of the evening with Then Came You and I will report back soon!

PS - I already finished a book this week, so expect the first "official" post this Sunday!

PPS - Yes, sometimes I like to read cheesy embarrassing young adult novels, reading's fun! It doesn't always have to change your outlook on life.