Saturday, November 26, 2016

Vivian Apple At The End Of The Word By Katie Coyle

The only reason this book is on my radar is because it was a part of the Tumblr's Reblog Book Club. Vivian Apple is set in a modern day America where a corporate leaning evangelistic church, The Church Of America, has taken over the country.

 One morning dutiful daughter and all around good girl Vivian Apple wakes up to find her Church Of America believing parents missing and two holes in their bedroom ceiling. The rapture has happened and Vivian is all alone. But is it all real ?

Now Vivian Apple is breaking all the rules to find the truth,  She's not the old Vivian Apple anymore; shes' Vivian Apple at the end of the world.

With her best friend and the knowledge that there has to be something more, Apple embarks on a cross country road tip to figure of what she believes.  This book has an odd tone about religion that both questions and accepts the idea of belief,

This is my first Julia Whelan audiobook, Whelan has a broad range and a knack for teenage voices. I can't wait to check out her other YA audiobooks.

Vivian Apple At The End of The World is one of the weird YAs where your not sure what's going to happen next and like the characters you will question what's is and isn't real and what it means to believe.






Friday, November 25, 2016

#BFRAT Guess the Cover Challenge !


Welcome #BFRAT participants ! We're entering the last few hours of the read-a-thon and now it's time for a challenge ! Below are 25 thumbnails of mostly YA,  some adult fiction, a nonfiction and a romance novel that came out in 2016. The goal of this challenge is to figure out which books the thumbnails are from. 

Enter your answers in the GoogleForm below. The person who guesses the most correctly will win a tote bag + swag ! 

(click to enlarge)

Contest Over ! Look below to see the answers ! 




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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

#Black Friday Readathon !


I'm sitting out the crowds at the mall this Friday and doing the Black Friday Readathon hosted by Du Livre books and Mocha Girls Read. I haven't done a readathon in a while so I was super excited when I saw this one. You can sign up here !


Goals

It's been  kind of a rough personal week so I've decided to create a pile of fun, escapist, light books. My goal is just to settle into a book with some Thanksgiving leftovers and gingerbread latte. Here's what is in my stack:


I'll be updating mostly on Twitter and Goodreads and you can also check back here on Friday for a challenge !





Monday, November 14, 2016

The Husband's Secret and Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty





When Cecilia Fitzpatrick opens a letter that is to be read in the event of her husbands death, unfortunately her husband is very much alive and what's in the letter will entwine the lives of Cecelia and two other women in the St. Angela's Parish community.  It will send her happily organized family life into darkest of depths and she could lose everything. 

At first I thought this book would be too "slice of life" and domestic for me, but as you read you sort of get pulled into the sinister things in these women's everyday lives. If you are looking for a book where characters make all the right choices this is not the book for you. There is something almost voyeuristic about watching the seams of these women's life come apart.

Throughout the book the POV switches between the three women, however once I was done I had a hard time figuring out why Moriarty included once characters story because I don't think it would have changed the events of the book if it was missing.

Moriarty writes this super omniscient narrator who has the ability to go back and forth in time but also give insight into the alternative timelines about what would have happened had characters made different choices, which is something I don't think I've seen before.I also enjoyed all the Australia-isms in this book, though I might have missed some things by not understanding Regional Australian culture. - 





I plucked this book out a free book pile in my aunt’s apartment because I’ve noticed Moriarty just dominating the NYT Bestsellers List and Anne Kingman on the late BOTNS podcast (pour some out) gave a raving recommendation for her twice.

Big Little Lies starts with a murder at an elementary school trivia night and then goes back six months earlier to explore the goings on of parents of the kindergarten class in the fictional beach town of Pirriwee Australia and how this murder came to be. At first I thought this book was just going to be a cozy mystery type murder about the “mommy wars” in the kindergarten class, but it delves into deep and darker material.

I really enjoyed this novel. I didn’t know what I was getting into but I loved the focus on women and their relationships to each other. My favorite of all the mom’s was Madeline, the newly 40-year-old who comes off as confident and brash at first but also has a silly side.

But really this book is all about that reveal of the whodunit and who it got dun to. I read the reveal scene multiple times because so much was going on.










I think it's funny that The Husband's Secret is blurbed by chick lit author Emily Giffin and Big Little Lies is blurbed by Stephen King. Those two authors are like polar opposites in my mind.  Also I think having Stephen King blurb a book as scary on the cover makes it seem like this book has horror elements when it really doesn't.




Monday, November 7, 2016

Only Daughter by Anna Snoekstra

  • Release Date: September 20th 2016
  • Pages: 288
  • Genre: Psychological Thriller/Grip-lit
  • Publisher: Mira (Harlequin)
After going missing for 12 years the Winters' family only daughter, Rebecca, is back. Rebecca doesn't remember where she's been and her memories are fleeting mostly because the girl who returned isn't Rebecca Winters. She's an impostor simply looking to hide out. But somebody from the shadows is on to the deception and before this impostor is found out she will discover that Rebecca's perfect suburban life was lie.

This  Aussie thriller moves between time, following the exploits of the impostor in 2014 and the uneasy life of the real teenage Rebecca Winters a decade previous. Snoekstra sets the scene of an idyllic life with a disturbing underbelly and while the novel doesn't have the same eerie pathos of a Gillian Flynn novel, you will find yourself flipping the pages to find out how this ends.

Because we spend so much time exploring the life of a teenage Rebecca coming of age in the '00s, this thriller has major crossover appeal for teen readers who can relate to her best friend drama and secret crushes.

While some  reviewers found the way coincidences that popped up to keep up the facade  to be too much,  I gave it the benefit of the doubt because when I read this I'd just watched the A&E documentary, The Impostor, on Netflix. This is the true story of a European man who pretends to be a missing American boy. So. Truth in fiction ?




I've been reading a lot of Australian authors like Liane Moriarty,  Max Barry and Anna Snoekstra and I've watched The Australian show The Slap and they all have multiple POVs and time shifts. . .  is this like an Australian thing ? Inquiring minds.

Also I thought this was a very good length for a book at just under 300 pages.






Thursday, November 3, 2016

The Wrath And The Dawn by Renee Adieh


May 12th 2015 | Pages: 388  | Genre: Historical/Fantasy | Publisher : Penguin Random house



I'm going to go ahead and reuse a .gif from my Red Queen Review



I mean we have the cold boy king Khalid, his protective cousin Jalal, the boyfriend Tariq  and then his best friend Rahim.

Let me back up here. This YA novel is an adaption of  the Arabian story of Scheherazade, a woman who tells the king a captivating story  for 1001 nights to keep him from killing her and they eventually fall in love. You know kind of a Netflix and chill situation.

In this re-imagining when Shahrzad (who goes by Shazi) volunteers to be the sacrificial bride to the young king-- her plan is to enchant the caliph with her stories, earn his trust. .. and then kill him. However as each dawn passes her mission and feelings towards the caliph begin to change.

In the first few chapters Ahdieh's writing is highly visual and reminded me of Marie Lu (a thought I had before I realized she'd blurbed it !)  and the final chapters are just so page turn-y. It has one of the few love triangles in a book where I was feeling the feelings.

For me the story fell apart at the center. At first it seems like we are going to hear this amazing tale. . . but then we abandon the take 1/3 of the way in  and the focus shifted to  Shazi and the caliph doing the enemies-to-lover dance. . . and I don't know. It just felt rote until we hit the climax.

As one does in YA there is a rebellion a foot and we follow Tariq, Shazi's boyfriend, as he sort of recruits people but I'm not sure what the payoff was. It was additional backstory that just didn't click,

The audiobook narrator Ariana Delawari has one of those great unobtrusive narratives, she puts a lot of thought and emotion behind her performance of Shahrzad but her other voices blended together to me and that might have been on of the reasons I struggled with this audiobook, sometime I lost sight of who was saying what.

The book had glimmers of magic  and I'll probably grab the sequel from the library to see where Ahdieh takes it next



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