Friday, 29 May 2015

Just One Day by: Gayle Forman

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Romance 
Published: August 20, 2013 by: Speak
Pages: 369
Rating: 2/5 stars
*highlight white text to reveal spoilers*

Just One Day was the romantic and adventurous story about a girl named Allyson, who is a high-school graduate gone on a trip to Italy. There, she meets Willem, a dutch actor who convinces her to go to Paris with him for just one day until she leaves. She accepts, and the two go on the adventure of a lifetime. But just like fate brought them together, fate also splits them apart which leads Allison to wonder if they really had something special, or not.

One word to describe this book would be: underwhelming. I just couldn’t connect with the characters, the plot was boring and pretty much everything annoyed me. It’s a shame because it’s from an author who I really love. 

The only thing that I pretty much liked about this book, is the writing in general. The plays of Shakespeare play an important role in the book, so I liked how Forman incorporated a lot of quotes from those plays. However besides the quotes, the plot was uninteresting.

I thought that the plot to this book was so uneventful. Nothing really developed besides at the end of the book, and I just thought that the book dragged on forever. The climax was practically non-existent, and everything was just so slow.

I also hated the characters of this book. Allyson was typical cliché romance girl: ditzy, girly and geeky, until a bad boy sweeps her off her feet and teaches her to live more. I just have one burning question: why on earth would you go to a strange city with a man you just met, supposedly "fall in love" with him, and then get all surprised when you guys are torn apart? I completely saw it coming, and Allyson was so stupid to have actually thought that she will be forever with a man she just met. Who are you, Anna from Frozen?!

Willem was so stereotypical. Bad boy, charming, goes after the good girl. While he may have loved Allyson was well, I found him to be so ditzy as well, and I feel like they weren’t even right for each other. It just seemed wrong.

Overall, a cliché romance novel which was not realistic one bit. It’s a shame, because I love Gayle Forman’s other book, but this book felt like it was from a completely different author. Not what I expected at all.

Have you read Just One Day? What did you think? 

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Life of Pi by: Yann Martel

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Adventure 
Published: August 29, 2006 by: Seal Books
Pages: 356
Rating: 5/5 stars

Life of Pi is a story about hope, faith, and love. It follows Pi Patel, a young Indian boy whose family runs a zoo. The family and their animals load onto a ship in search of a better life in Canada. However, a tragic accident occurs and suddenly Pi finds himself stranded on a lifeboat in the middle of the Pacific with no one besides a hyena, a chimpanzee, a zebra and an adult Bengal tiger. Pi must rely on his faith and optimism to survive; if he can tame the animals.

This book was beautiful, full of intricate writing and an amazing lesson. I had to read this for my English class, and everyone warned me that it was such a bad book. I went in expecting the worst, but what I got was a thrilling tale that made me think.

I loved the writing in this book. It was so clever and emotionally-driven, and every line was captivating. It is quite a sad book, but Pi provides enough comic relief to make me fall in love with this heartwarming character. He was so positive about life, and he didn’t let anything stand in his way.

I liked how this book had a lot of psychology in it. It taught me a lot, but it wasn’t so heavy. I didn’t find that this book was hard to understand, I actually thought it would be perfect for teenagers because the lessons in the book would be able to stay with us for our entire life.

Religion plays a big role in this book, but I think it would be an amazing book for anyone, no matter what your beliefs are. It accepted diversity, with the main character being committed to three religions. It was such a unique book.

Overall, I fell in love with this book. It taught me so much, the ending was so brilliant and it gives you a glimpse of what it’s like when you lose everything, but build it back up.

Have you read Life of Pi? What did you think?

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Friday, 22 May 2015

To Kill a Mockingbird by: Harper Lee

Genre: Classics, Historical Fiction 
Published: May 23, 2006 by: Harper Modern Classics
Pages: 324 
Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

To Kill a Mockingbird is the heartwarming classic story of two children growing up in a small southern town, right at the height of the discrimination of African Americans. The children not only witness the mistreatment of black people, but they also witness their own father: Atticus Finch, take a stand against it, when he defends a black man convicted of a crime that he may have not committed. It is a constant battle of doing what’s right, or what’s expected.

 Obviously everyone and anyone have read this book, and many have adored it. I found some parts to be very interesting, but some parts were just underwhelming.

I really liked the characters of this book. Atticus Finch was an amazing human being to stand up for what he believed in, and he was setting a great example for his children. Scout and Jem were very adventurous and curious, and I loved how out-spoken they were.

I also loved the end of this book. From the trial, onward, I was captivated by the writing and it was so powerful. I found it to be extremely interesting how in-detail the trial was, and I was biting my nails to hear the verdict. I felt as though I was in that courtroom as well.

What I didn’t like about this book, is the fact that the beginning and the middle were extremely slow. I couldn’t understand what was going on, and I feel like the real climax happened at the end. The entire book was just leading up to this trial, which really sealed the book for me.

Overall the message of this book was emotional and powerful. What Atticus did for his community was extremely incredible, and he proved that everyone deserved equal rights. I just kind of wished that there was more rising action in the beginning and the end. That is why it got 3.5 stars. 

Have you read To Kill a Mockingbird? What did you think? 

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #32 Favourite Book To Movie Adaptions

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme from The Broke and The Bookish that allows users to share their top choices of the topic of the week!

This week was a freebie, so I decided to talk about my favourite movies based on books, because I do love movies as well :) 

1. The Maze Runner by: James Dashner 
I enjoyed the movie better than the book (gasp!) 

2. The Fault in Our Stars by: John Green 
Everything from the cast to the soundtrack was amazing. 

3. If I Stay by: Gayle Forman 
This movie really got me obsessed with Willamette Stone, (even though they don't exist in real life *sobs*)

4. Insurgent by: Veronica Roth 
There's been a lot of debate to this movie, but I loved it and thought that it was so creative! 

5. The Great Gatsby by: F. Scott Fitzgerald 
Leonardo DiCaprio was everything I imagined Gatsby to be and more. 

6. Mockingjay by: Suzanne Collins 
This Part 1 was soooo much more interesting than the book in my opinion. 

7. Life of Pi by: Yann Martel 
I recently just finished this book and watched the movie and it was so beautiful and emotional. 

8. The Outsiders by: S.E Hinton 
Don't even get me started on the cast for this one... amazing. 

9. The Perks of Being a Wallflower 
Logan Lerman was an incredible Charlie, and I found that this movie stayed true to the book. 

10. Harry Potter by: J.K. Rowling 
The heart and soul poured into all of these movies was insane. 

What book to movie adaptions do you love? 

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Friday, 15 May 2015

The Heir (The Selection #4) by: Kiera Cass

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Romance, Dystopia
Published: May 5 2015 by: Harper Teen
Pages: 352
Rating: 3/5 stars
*highlight white text to reveal major spoilers*

Princess Eadlyn is tired of hearing over and over how her parents; King Maxon and Queen America had a fairy-tale happily ever after. She has no intention of getting married. However, when her parents beg her to enter a selection to bring joy to a nation still in uprising, she reluctantly agrees for the sake of the nation that will soon be hers to rule. Along the way, she encounters a surprise selected, and the unbearable task of choosing a husband when all she really wants to be is independent.

 Let me start off by saying that no one in this world is more annoying than Eadlyn Schreave. I wanted to enjoy this book so bad because I loved the trilogy, but Eadlyn left me with such a bad perception of her.

For starters, she was the biggest brat. Eadlyn does what Eadlyn wants to do, and everyone has to cater to her every need. She worked her poor maid like she was Cinderella, and constantly hurled insults at her. Seriously, this girl has no filter. She went on and on how no one in the world is more powerful than her, when in reality her own father was because he was the actual king. She doesn't seem to really care about the important duties she'll have and worries more about pushing around poor Marlee's kids. Marlee was one of my favourite characters in the series and her children didn't know any better. Eadlyn was just plain rude.

On the plus side, I did love the character of Kile. He was patient and kind with Eadlyn and the rest of the palace members, and I am rooting for him. It is upsetting though that Eadlyn won't give him or any other of the selected the time of day. She prefers to just yell at them when they try to get to know her.

Off the topic of Eadlyn now, (I just needed to get that off my chest), I actually did think that this book was somewhat interesting. I enjoyed reading about the selected boys, and they all seemed very nice and thoughtful. I am curious to see who Eadlyn ends up with.

Overall, this book was kind of a let down because of Eadlyn having no time for anyone. I did like reading about her and Kile's development, but there honestly wasn't enough chemistry with anyone else in this book to make it more interesting. I loved all of the other characters, (especially Ahren) and I am looking forward to reading about them more. I understand that Kiera Cass created Eadlyn to be sort of a contrasting character to what America was, but I will always compare the two. I just felt like there should have been more chemistry.

I apologise if this review sounded more like a rant, but Eadlyn just caused me so much stress that I needed to spill out. I wonder how this selection will play out.

Have you read The Heir? What did you think?

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #31 Ten Authors I Really Want To Meet

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme from The Broke and The Bookish that allows users to share their top choices of the topic of the week!

I've never met an author before, but it's one of my dreams. Here is everyone I want to meet.

1. John Green
He is so hilarious and has written some of my favourite books.

2. Rainbow Rowell
We could just fangirl about Harry Potter together.

3. J.K. Rowling
I'd probably just be in awe that she's really standing in front of me.

4. Jennifer Niven
I just want to thank her fro writing such a beautiful book.

5. Stephen Chbosky
Perks impacted me in a way I'll never forget.

6. Veronica Roth
I could talk about Divergent for hours with her.

7. Gayle Forman
To meet the author behind one of my favourite characters in YA would be amazing!

8. Kiera Cass
I would probably just gush about how amazing The Selection was.

9. Jenny Han
Every book from her, I've loved.

10. Suzanne Collins
Kind of a weird pick, because The Hunger Games wasn't my favourite series, however it was the first YA book that I read, so I feel like she started it all for me.

What authors would you love to meet?

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Friday, 8 May 2015

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer #1) by: Michelle Hodkin

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Paranormal
Published: September 27, 2011 by: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 456
Rating: 2.5/5 stars
*highlight white text to reveal spoilers*

Mara Dyer is different. She wakes up after a mysterious accident to find that all of her friends are dead, and her memory is wiped. Suddenly she starts to see things that aren't there (like her friends) and anyone that she wishes dead is suddenly, dead. Her only hope is a strange boy in her new private school who is compelled to help; no matter what it takes.

This book was creepy beyond belief. I don't read much paranormal, so this change of plot was all new to me. Mara was an interesting character, but overall I just couldn't connect with the book.

I liked the characters in this book. Mara obviously had a lot on her mind, but I liked how she was well-put together and didn't make impulsive decisions. Although, if I were her, I would probably tell my parents if I started seeing my dead friends in my room. I felt sorry for her, with all that she went through with her ex, and she obviously had a lot of pressure on her.

I loved the male protagonist, Noah. He was very patient with Mara, and he was also extremely loyal. He wasn't really a cookie-cutter male figure, and he was truly a gentlemen. I liked how his relationship with Mara slowly progressed instead of insta-love.

I just really didn't like the plot to this book. I found it to be really boring, and I took nothing out of it except for the flashback parts. I feel like some things could have used more description, especially the ending. I did not know what was going on, but then again, I didn't really care either because I just wanted the book to end.

I just couldn't connect to this book at all. It had no emotion, it was just really dark and scary to be honest. It wasn't anything that I was dying to read chapter after chapter, and I tried hard to not DNF it.

Overall, the characters were a hit, but the plot, a huge miss. If you like really dark and eerie books, then this would definitely be for you, but since I'm someone who prefers much lighter, happier books, I think I'll pass on the rest of the series.

Did you read Mara Dyer? What did you think?

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #30 Books I'll Probably Never Read

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme from The Broke and The Bookish that allows users to share their top choices of the topic of the week!

It's always great to do a positive top ten tuesday, but sometimes you've just go to get those negative feelings out. Here are books I don't plan on reading: 

1. City of Heavenly Fire by: Cassandra Clare 
Partly because it's so long, and partly because I DNF'ed the series after Lost Soul's. 

2. Les Miserables by: Victor Hugo 
I put this on my TBR, but I'll probably never get to it because it's more than 1000 pages long and re-watching the musical is fine by me. 

3. After Series by: Anna Todd 
It's simple: I DNF'ed the first book after months of trying, and I don't have any intention of starting again. 

4. Girl Online 2 by: Zoe Sugg 
This second book in the series does not have a title yet, but I don't think I'll read it because I found Girl Online to be very cheesy and cliche. 

5. Throne of Glass by: Sarah J. Maas 
A lot of people have recommended this book to me, but I'm not really into YA fantasy all that much. 

6. The Hobbit by: J. R. R. Tolkien 
This book is just too overly descriptive for me, that it just becomes boring. 

7. The Chronicles of Narnia by: C.S. Lewis 
There's just something about this book that draws me away from it everytime I pick try to read it. 

8. Unravel Me by: Tahereh Mafi 
I'm not entirely against the series, but it's just not my priority and there was nothing really special about the series to me that I must keep reading. 

9. The Death Cure by: James Dashner 
It took me so long to get through the first two books, I think I'll just watch the movies instead. 

10. The Kane Chronicles by: Rick Riordan 
I loved his Greek Mythology books, but I think I'm done with mythology now. It gets repetitive. 

What books will you probably never read? 

Emily @ Paperback Princess

Friday, 1 May 2015

All The Bright Places by: Jennifer Niven

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary
Published: January 6, 2015 by: Knopf
Pages: 388
Rating: 5/5 stars
*major spoilers ahead; highlight white text to reveal them*

All The Bright Places was the brilliant story of a boy named Theodore Finch, who is obsessed with the idea of death, and a girl named Violet, who feels like she wants to die. When the two meet in an spring of fate, they both set out to help the other overcome their obstacles. They save each other.

This. book. was. amazing. When I saw it on Goodreads being described as The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park, I couldn't resist. This book stood it's own and will honestly impact me forever.

To the first positive of this book, the writing was so beautiful. I could practically quote this entire book because Niven was so clever at writing it, and it was very emotional. There was not a single line that did not have an impact.

The second positive, is the character development. The two main protagonists start off to be very broken, but throughout the course of the book you can really feel them trying to pick up the pieces, and live happier lives. Theodore was just an amazing human being, and I felt extremely connected to him. He was so supportive, funny and brilliant.

I loved the message of this book. Yes, it is essentially about suicide and death, however it wasn't such a heavy and really hard book. It was realistic and showed the incredible story of how to conquer something inside. Even though the ending had me sobbing, I was actually happy with how everything turned out. Yes, I was extremely upset to see Theodore die, but I liked how Niven kept it real. It wasn't a predictable ending in the sense that everyone gets better and lives happily ever after. She showed that suicide is a real issue, that needs more awareness surrounding it. Even though Violet is a fictional character, I hope that she lives a content life now knowing how much she meant to Theodore. 

Overall, this book was so well thought out, and really has a different take on a heavy topic. I encourage you all to read this as I am certain that anyone will take something out of it. Hopefully, we can stop innocent lives being taken by suicide soon. 

Have you read All The Bright Places? What did you think?

Emily @ Paperback Princess