Monday, May 12, 2014

The Beginning of Everything (Severed Heads, Broken Hearts) by Robin Schneider

16097364Published: August 27th, 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 335
Format: Paperback
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥

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 career as a jock, 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.

Together, Ezra and Cassidy discover flash mobs, buried treasure, secret movie screenings, and a poodle that might just be the reincarnation of Jay Gatsby. 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?

I adored this book, and I feel like I've been saying that about a lot of books lately, but it's true, I've just had a great time reading - reading books that are wonderful in their own way. So, first off I want to start with something as ordinary as the title simply because I think it is worth mentioning. As some of you may know the title of this book used to be Severed Heads, Broken Hearts, before it was reprinted to become The Beginning of Everything, personally I really like the original title and my copy of the book has the cover you see above. I like the original title because it is so spot on regarding the novel itself and I really enjoyed realizing that throughout the novel (but I also see why it was changed, because the new title fits as well).

I really enjoyed the novel as a whole, I liked all the little things that happened and the scenes at school where there was just a lot of banter and jokes - it was great. I liked the way that the romance was built up and how it didn't feel to sudden. I also loved all the references to both Harry Potter and The Great Gatsby - there were quite a few, but I loved it.

The characters in this novel are great. I loved Ezra, and how he developed as a character throughout the novel. I enjoyed his voice as the narrator and I liked the fact that he was the narrator because, I feel that I don't read enough books where there is a male narrator. As for his love-interest Cassidy, I liked her, but at times I became annoyed with her, but it was understandable annoyance and it was resolved at the end of the novel. The supporting characters in this novel were also great, I loved Toby so much, he is just so amazing and witty and overall great. Toby and Ezra are the two characters that I absolutely fell in love with in this novel, I love their friendship because I could relate to how nerdy they were, and it was just great. I also liked Phoebe, she was just a sweetheart, and there is this one scene where she is just amazing (badass, in my book).

As for the writing style, I really enjoyed it, but like with John Green some people might not like it, but I loved it. I don't think it's exactly like John Greens writing style, I just think that both Robin and John write the way that they speak, and I connot express how much I love that. The language is not that hard to read for those of you that are (like me) not form a english-speaking country.

Overall I just really enjoyed this book, I liked the characters, the plot, the writing. It was just great and I think that a lot of people might really enjoy it as well, so go read it!

“Sometimes I think that everyone has a tragedy waiting for them, that the people buying milk in their pajamas or 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 - a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen.” 

“I wondered what things what things became when you no longer needed them, and I wondered what the future would hold once we'd gotten past our personal tragedies and proven them ultimately survivable.” 

“There's a word for it," she told me, "in French, for when you have a lingering impression of something having passed by. Sillage. I always think of it when a firework explodes and lights up the smoke from the ones before it."
"That's a terrible word," I teased. "It's like an excuse for holding onto the past."
"Well, I think it's beautiful. A word for remembering small moments destined to be lost.” 

“She tasted like buried treasure and swing sets and coffee. She tasted the way fireworks felt, like something you could get close to but never really have just for yourself.” 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan

Two Boys KissingPublished: August 27th, 2013
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 239
Format: Paperback
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥

The two boys kissing are Craig and Harry. They're hoping to set the world record for the longest kiss. They're not a couple, but they used to be.

Peter and Neil are a couple. Their kisses are different. Avery and Ryan have only just met and are trying to figure out what happens next. Cooper is alone. He's not sure how he feels.

As the marathon progresses, these boys, their friends and families evaluate the changing nature of feelings, behaviour and this crazy thing called love.

I was very impressed with this novel, I loved reading it. It was touching and heartbreaking, and absolutely wonderful. It is narrated by a group of gay men that have died from AIDS, etc. We get to know the stories of seven main characters, seen through the eyes of those who have died. Each of the stories are so touching and important, we see how some of them struggle and others don't, we see that it is widely exepted that they are gay and that it isn't, and all of the stories that David Levithan tell in this novel are so important and so beautiful in their own way.

I adored the characters and the voice of the nerration, and it is written so beautifully. I think it is an important book because it gives such a deep look into the struggles that some gay teens go through, it sheds so much light on issues that are pressing but are not being handled properly and it is just a great novel. It is sad in part but also optimistic in part and I loved that about it. Also, the way that Levithan writes it is so beautiful, of you are a person that loves beautiful quotes, this book is full of them. It is just a beautiful book and I think that while it can really help someone that is gay come to terms with themselves, people that are not gay can read it as well, because it has so many important messages embeded in it. Everyone should read this book - adults as well as teens.

“Love is so painful, how could you ever wish it on anybody? And love is so essential, how could you ever stand in its way?” 

“The first sentence of the truth is always the hardest. Each of us had a first sentence, and most of us found the strength to say it out loud to someone who deserved to hear it. What we hoped, and what we found, was that the second sentence of the truth is always easier than the first, and the third sentence is even easier than that. Suddenly you are speaking the truth in paragraphs, in pages. The fear, the nervousness, is still there, but it is joined by a new confidence. All along, you've used the first sentence as a lock. But now you find that it's the key.”

“Things are not magical because they've been conjured for us by some outside force. They are magical because we create them.” 

“You can give words, but you can't take them. And when words are given, that is when they are shared. We remember what that was like. Words so real they were almost tangible. There are conversations you remember, for certain. But more than that, there is the sensation of conversation. You will remember that, even when the precise words begin to blur.” 

Saturday, May 10, 2014

TO BE READ: Bout of Books 10.0

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 12th and runs through Sunday, May 18th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 10 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog.
So after considering it for a little while and watching Regan (PeruseProject) on Youtube I decided to participate in the Bout of Books 10.0 readathon *yeeey*. This is just an outline of what I want to read because I am horrible at actually sticking to TBR's, and I just ordered a huge amount of books online to be delivered by the time I go back to Norway on Monday. Which basically means that I might change my mind and that you should keep your eyes open for a book haul coming your way, possibly on Youtube (..most likely on Youtube). But, I don't want to waste your time anyone, so here are (some of) the books I will be reading:

I loved the first book in this series and cannot wait to continue with this one. 

Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1)
I've heard great things about this, but we'll see what I think.

I adored the first book and can't wait to read this!

Obvious choice, because City of Heavenly Fire is coming out and I am so stoked.

I loved Anna and The French Kiss so much and this just seems so cute, I can't wait.

So yeah, that is it. I feel like it is pretty enthusiastic, but I can't wait to read all of these awesome books and I think I can do it. What are you reading for the readathon? I would love to know, so leave a comment and let me know. 

Hope you guys have an awesome day!
Until next time - Happy reading.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Future Reads #2

Lies My Girlfriend Told Me


When Alix's charismatic girlfriend, Swanee, dies from sudden cardiac arrest, Alix is overcome with despair. As she searches Swanee's room for mementos of their relationship, she finds Swanee's cell phone, pinging with dozens of texts sent from a mysterious contact, L.T. The most recent text reads: "Please tell me what I did. Please, Swan. Te amo. I love you."

Shocked and betrayed, Alix learns that Swanee has been leading a double life--secretly dating a girl named Liana the entire time she's been with Alix. Alix texts Liana from Swanee's phone, pretending to be Swanee in order to gather information before finally meeting face-to-face to break the news.

Brought together by Swanee's lies, Alix and Liana become closer than they'd thought possible. But Alix is still hiding the truth from Liana. Alix knows what it feels like to be lied to--but will coming clean to Liana mean losing her, too?

Kiss Kill Vanish


Valentina Cruz no longer exists.

One moment, she was wrapped in Emilio’s arms, melting into his kiss. The next, she was witnessing the unthinkable: a murder in cold blood, ordered by her father and carried out by her boyfriend. When Emilio pulled the trigger, Valentina disappeared. She made a split-second decision to shed her identity and flee her life of privilege, leaving the glittering parties and sultry nightlife of Miami far behind.

She doesn’t know how to explain to herself what she saw. All she knows now is that nothing she believed about her family, her heart, or Emilio’s love, was real.

She can change her name and deny her past, but Valentina can’t run from the truth. The lines between right and wrong, and trust and betrayal, will be blurred beyond recognition as she untangles the deceptions of the two men she once loved and races to find her own truth.