Book Review: The Running Dream by Wendelin van Draanen

8354134Title: The Running Dream
Author: Wendelin van Draanen
Published date: 11th January 2011
Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Disabilities, Sports
Source: Paperback copy (owned)
Summary:

An award-winning and inspiring novel.  When Jessica’s dreams are shattered, she puts herself back together—and learns to dream bigger than ever before.

Jessica thinks her life is over when she loses a leg in a car accident. She’s not comforted by the news that she’ll be able to walk with the help of a prosthetic leg. Who cares about walking when you live to run?

As she struggles to cope with crutches and a first cyborg-like prosthetic, Jessica feels oddly both in the spotlight and invisible. People who don’t know what to say, act like she’s not there. Which she could handle better if she weren’t now keenly aware that she’d done the same thing herself to a girl with CP named Rosa. A girl who is going to tutor her through all the math she’s missed. A girl who sees right into the heart of her.

With the support of family, friends, a coach, and her track teammates, Jessica may actually be able to run again. But that’s not enough for her now. She doesn’t just want to cross finish lines herself—she wants to take Rosa with her

Winner of the Schneider Family Book Award

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Book Review: Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner

516-WZ4BhsL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Title: Goodbye Days
Author:  Jeff Zentner
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Published date: 7th March 2017
Published by: Crown Books for Young Readers
Rating: 5 / 5 stars
Summary:

What if you could spend one last day with someone you lost?

One day Carver Briggs had it all—three best friends, a supportive family, and a reputation as a talented writer at his high school, Nashville Academy for the Arts.

The next day he lost it all when he sent a simple text to his friend Mars, right before Mars, Eli, and Blake were killed in a car crash.

Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident, and he’s not the only one. Eli’s twin sister is trying to freeze him out of school with her death-ray stare. And Mars’s father, a powerful judge, is pressuring the district attorney to open a criminal investigation into Carver’s actions.

Luckily, Carver has some unexpected allies: Eli’s girlfriend, the only person to stand by him at school; Dr. Mendez, his new therapist; and Blake’s grandmother, who asks Carver to spend a Goodbye Day with her to share their memories and say a proper goodbye to his friend.

Soon the other families are asking for a Goodbye Day with Carver, but he’s unsure of their motives. Will they all be able to make peace with their losses, or will these Goodbye Days bring Carver one step closer to a complete breakdown or—even worse—prison?


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Every time there was an accident caused by texting while driving and someone died, people immediately tend to blame the person driving. But they rarely talk about the person sending the text. Goodbye Days explored that—Mars’ dad, and Adair blaming Carver because he sent the text that led to his three best friends’ death, as well as the guilt felt by Carver for sending that text message.

It always makes me sad reading about children, teens and young adults who lost their life too soon, before they get to grow up and live their life the fullest. before they could realize their dreams and do great things. It also makes me sad when the what-ifs game was played, like when Carver made up the stories where he didn’t send the text message. But I love torturing myself and breaking my heart when I read, which is why I love this book so much.

“I imagine what Eli saw in the split second before the trailer of that truck grew in his field of vision until it was all he saw.” — Pierce Bauer

This is a quote from Eli’s dad, when he and his wife were having their goodbye day for Eli with Carver and Jesmyn. I think this sentence is the reason why I’m so fascinated with stories with tragedies. I like to imagine what they feel that split second, knowing that they were going to die. I did that with this book too, playing that what-ifs game in their point of view instead of Carver’s.

I think what I love the most about this book is the goodbye days, when they get to know pieces of Blake, Eli and Mars that they didn’t know before. I enjoyed the flashbacks Carver had about the “Sauce Crew” as well as the imagined scenes he came up with sometimes. The friendship that Carver had with Blake, Eli, and Mars was so beautiful, it made me choke up and wish I get to have that kind of friendship. I also love the moments with Dr. Mendez, and Carver’s journey to get through that tragedy, to forgive himself and ease his guilt. At least, that’s what I’d like to think about the final chapter.

To sum it up, I love this book a lot and I think it was a masterpiece. It has everything I love, and made me cry and have this melancholic feeling from page one till the end. Even though the book didn’t really focus on diversity, I like the fact that it has diverse characters; Jesmyn was a Filipino adopted by American family, Mars was a POC, and Blake was gay. And one major thing I like is that Jesmyn and Carver didn’t end up together. It always turned me off when that happens, especially if the girl was the girlfriend of one of the people that died. I might have to take away one star if that happened. I would recommend this book to fans of History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera, and I’ll Give You the Sun, and The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, based on the melancholic vibe the books gave me, and how much it made me cry.

I rate the book 5 out of 5 stars.


So, have you ever read Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner before? What are your thoughts on the book? Do you like tragedies, and thinking about things like “What if the person did things differently?” and imagine different scenarios before crying because the characters are still dead in the end?

I’d love to know your thoughts.

erucchii2

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Internet Famous by Danika Stone

Title: Internet Famous
Author: Danika Stone
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: June 6th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Source: Xpresso Book Tour & Netgalley
Rating: 4 / 5 stars
Summary:

Can an online romance survive in real life?

Internet sensation Madison Nakama has it all! Her pop-culture rewatch site has a massive following, and fans across the world wait on her every post and tweet. Even Madi’s dismal romantic life seems ready to take off as Laurent, a fellow geek (and unfairly HOT French exchange student!) starts flirting with her in the comments section of her blog. But Laurent’s not the only one watching for Madi’s replies.

Internet fame has a price, and their online romance sparks the unwanted attention of a troll. When Madi’s “real life” hits a rough patch, she feels her whole world crumbling. With Laurent’s support, can Madi rally her friends across the globe to beat the troll, or will he succeed in driving her away from everything―and everyone―she loves?

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

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Book Review: One Moment by Kristina McBride

29241215Title: One Moment
Author: Kristina McBride
Published date: 17th January 2017
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Mystery & Thrillers
Date read: 7th June 2017
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4 / 5 stars
Summary:

This was supposed to be the best summer of Maggie’s life. Now it’s the one she’d do anything to forget.

Maggie remembers hanging out at the gorge with her closest friends after a blowout party. She remembers climbing the trail with her perfect boyfriend, Joey. She remembers that last kiss, soft, lingering, and meant to reassure her. So why can’t she remember what happened in the moment before they were supposed to dive? Why was she left cowering at the top of the cliff, while Joey floated in the water below–dead?

As Maggie’s memories return in snatches, nothing seems to make sense. Why was Joey acting so strangely at the party? Where did he go after taking her home? And if Joey was keeping these secrets, what else was he hiding?

Thank you Netgalley, and the publisher for giving me the chance to read and review this book.

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Top 5 Wednesday | Favorite LGBTQ+ Reads (19th Apr ’17)

Hello everyone~ Wow, the last time I posted for T5W was March :O

For all those new people who doesn’t know what T5W is… T5W is a discussion group on Goodreads, created by Lainey, and now hosted by Sam. Each Wednesday (duh!) we’ll post our top 5 list (sometimes more) based on the given topics.

This week’s topic is Favorite LGBTQ+ Reads. This has got to be one of my favourite topics ever. The topic is kind of self-explanatory, but to make it clearer, for today’s topic, we’ll get to talk about our favorite books that feature LGBTQ+ characters or are by LGBTQ+ authors. Unfortunately, my LGBTQ+ reads are limited to books featuring only GB and Q.
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Book Review: History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

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Title: History Is All You Left Me
Author: Adam Silvera
Published date: 17th January 2017
Published by: Soho Teen
Genre: GLBT, YA, Contemporary, Mental Illness, Romance, Angst

Date read: 6th April – 7th April 2017
Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Summary:When Griffin’s first love and ex-boyfriend, Theo, dies in a drowning accident, his universe implodes. Even though Theo had moved to California for college and started seeing Jackson, Griffin never doubted Theo would come back to him when the time was right. But now, the future he’s been imagining for himself has gone far off course.

To make things worse, the only person who truly understands his heartache is Jackson. But no matter how much they open up to each other, Griffin’s downward spiral continues. He’s losing himself in his obsessive compulsions and destructive choices, and the secrets he’s been keeping are tearing him apart.

If Griffin is ever to rebuild his future, he must first confront his history, every last heartbreaking piece in the puzzle of his life.


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First of all, the blurb by Nicola Yoon on the front cover was so true. I cried, and when I stopped to give my heart a break, I cried again just thinking about everything I just read, and when I resumed reading, I cried. I literally bawled my eyes out as I read. Never have I cried so much reading a book, not even when I read Girls in Pieces.

I decided to give myself a few days before writing this book review to avoid being all rant-y. Because I had time to think about it, I realized that this book…well, it is an overused plot. If not in published books, then in fanfictions. I should know because I read it a lot (I’m a masochist like that). However, Adam Silvera managed to write this so beautifully, in a way that it turned out fresh, and with ten times more angst than any others that I’ve encountered.

I think I love and hate Griffin. This book was told in Griffin’s point of view, so we’re in his head, and we get to know him. I can empathize with him. I think if I was in his shoes, I would probably do the same think. Or maybe not. If it was me, I wouldn’t have broken up with Theo. But then, I wouldn’t have talk about my insecurities and doubts either, and the relationship would turn sour as months goes by because reassurances wouldn’t help not when Theo’s so far away. And the eventual break up would hurt even more. Basically everything that Griffin feared. But then, that was also what I hated about Griffin. He made a decision for Theo, instead of talking about it with Theo. In the end, I can’t even blame Jackson for taking Theo away because it was Griffin’s own fault for letting Theo go.

The same goes for Theo, I love and hate him. Theo is a genius, and he is adorable. He was very sweet when he was with Griffin. I was totally rooting for them. And when he said yes, about being Griffin’s end game, I totally melted. Because this boy was still in love with Griffin, and I love him for that. But then, he started dating Jackson. Although I can’t blame him for that, because technically he was single, but I hate that he still had a hold on Griffin. Because he was still in love with Griffin too, and still agreed that him and Griffin would be endgame. And I think because of that, Griffin was still obsessive about him and couldn’t move on.

Jackson, oh boy, I really hated him at first. Since the start, it was like he was trying to compete with Griffin. And when I found out that he tried to make Theo stop being friends with Griffin, I kind of lost it for awhile. But then, he did kind of help Griffin found closure, so I cooled down a bit. Towards the end, I stopped hating Jackson (although I still don’t like him) because in the end, it wasn’t his fault who he fell in love with. Technically, Theo was single.

Other characters I love are Griffin’s parents, and Theo’s parents. I love how supportive they were when Griffin and Theo came out to them. And I love that they had shipped Theo and Griffin together even before the two of them became a couple. And that hilarious scene with Griffin’s dad. I love their families so much. And I love Wade too. I will let you found out the reason why by yourself.

To sum it up, this book is about a heartbreaking first love. This book is about Griffin’s journey, about him holding on to that first love and realizing that, as time passes, Theo changed but he changed too. This book is about how first love would stay with you even if your current feelings has changed.

I rate this book 5 / 5 stars.


So, this was one of the hardest book review I’ve ever written. Have anyone of you read the book? Did you enjoy it? Did you cry as much as I did? I’d love to read about your thought on this book.

Yours truly,

erucchii

Book Review: Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

24879132Title:  Girl In Pieces
Author: Kathleen Glasgow
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Published: 30th August 2016
Source: Own copy
Date read: 4th January – 7th January 2017
Rating: 5 / 5 stars
Summary:

Charlotte Davis is in pieces. At seventeen she’s already lost more than most people lose in a lifetime. But she’s learned how to forget. The broken glass washes away the sorrow until there is nothing but calm. You don’t have to think about your father and the river. Your best friend, who is gone forever. Or your mother, who has nothing left to give you.

Every new scar hardens Charlie’s heart just a little more, yet it still hurts so much. It hurts enough to not care anymore, which is sometimes what has to happen before you can find your way back from the edge.


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I am a masochist for going through this beautiful, mental torture. Seriously, it was mentally exhausting, which is why it took me three days to read it. But at the end of the day, it was so worth it.

Going into the story, after reading the summary, I thought it was about a girl cutting herself (I was right about that one), and set in high school — she was bullied, and met with friends and support group that helped through it. But the most important thing was, the main character herself worked to get through whatever things that she had to go through. But meh, I was wrong. The book was much more than that. It was a coming of age book, and self-discovery, in a way.

There was so much hype surrounding this book, and I tried not to keep my expectations so high, in case I was disappointed. But it turned out I didn’t have to worry about that at all. The book was well-written, and it was so beautiful, and realistic. I felt like I was there too, experiencing all the clusterfuck that Charlie had to go through. I felt so damn sad reading it, that when I am not ugly sobbing, it left me feeling choked as I read page after page.

To sum it up, if you need a book, a realistic, well-written and beautiful story that will make you cry so hard, this is your book. If you want a book that tells you that only YOU can change your life, that you can ask for help, but it’s only if you make the effort that your life will change, well, then this is your book. I think fans of Aristotle and Dante Discovers the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Fans of the Impossible Life by Kate Scelsa, Every Exquisite Thing by Matthew Quick, and Am I Normal Yet by Holly Bourne would really enjoy this book.

I bet you’re wondering why, when none of the books I’ve listed out involved cutting. Well, they have something else in common. And it’s not the mental illness issue. It’s about making the readers feel like everything’s going to get ugly when the shit hits the fan with all the clusterfuck, and the despair, and everything gets worse before it gets better. That is what these books have in common, and that is why I think they’ll enjoy reading Girl In Pieces.

I rate this book 5/5 stars.