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

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Smallest Thing by Lisa Manterfield

Title: The Smallest Thing
Author: Lisa Manterfield
Publication date: July 18th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Rating: 4 / 5 stars
Summary:

The very last thing 17-year-old Emmott Syddall wants is to turn out like her dad. She’s descended from ten generations who never left their dull English village, and there’s no way she’s going to waste a perfectly good life that way. She’s moving to London and she swears she is never coming back.

But when the unexplained deaths of her neighbors force the government to quarantine the village, Em learns what it truly means to be trapped. Now, she must choose. Will she pursue her desire for freedom, at all costs, or do what’s best for the people she loves: her dad, her best friend Deb, and, to her surprise, the mysterious man in the HAZMAT suit?

Inspired by the historical story of the plague village of Eyam, this contemporary tale of friendship, community, and impossible love weaves the horrors of recent news headlines with the intimate details of how it feels to become an adult—and fall in love—in the midst of tragedy.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / iBooks


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I was a bit weary at first before starting this book. While it has elements that I love in a book, it also has this dystopian-like feel which I rarely read. But as I started reading, I just couldn’t stop, and it hooked me almost immediately.

The Smallest Thing is a slow-paced book, and some people might think it’s a bit dull. But this book is definitely worth your time. The helplessness and the fear felt by Emmott throughout the story makes my heart aches, and makes you want to read faster to know how it’ll end. The characters were also well-developed, making the book much more enjoyable.

I would certainly recommend this coming-of-age book to everyone. It makes my heart aches with what-ifs and the unfairness of it all.

I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars.


Author bio:

Lisa Manterfield is the award-winning author of I’m Taking My Eggs and Going Home: How One Woman Dared to Say No to Motherhood. Her work has appeared in The Saturday Evening Post, Los Angeles Times, and Psychology Today. Originally from northern England, she now lives in Southern California with her husband and over-indulged cat. A Strange Companion is her first novel. Learn more at LisaManterfield.com.

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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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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: …And A Happy New Year? by Holly Bourne

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Title: …And A Happy New Year? (The Spinster Club #3.5)
Author: Holly Bourne
Publisher: Usborne Publishing Ltd
Date Published: 1st November 2016
Date read: 10th December 2016
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Edition: Hardback
Source: Own copy
Rating: 5 / 5 stars
Summary:

Evie, Amber and Lottie are having a new year party to remember.

For the first time since leaving college, all three girls are back together. It’s time for fun and flirting, snogs and shots.

(And not tears or tantrums or terrible secrets)

Because everything’s going great for these girls – Spinster Club for ever! Right?


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…And A Happy New Year? is a giant ball of hurt disguised in a pretty cover, and sweet and cute moment between Kyle and Amber at the beginning of the book.

But of course, it is totally worth it.

…And A Happy New Year? is a novella about Amber, Evie and Lottie after the first term of university. When I saw this book on the bookshelf of my local bookstore — and it was a hardback version, and so very pretty — I didn’t bother reading the summary and went straight to the first chapter. I only read two pages, but I was already so excited because it was a scene between Amber and Kyle and they are so cute. So I bought it immediately. With such a cute start, I thought it would be such a happy story, with all three of them back together, kickass members of the Spinster Club.

If I had bothered reading the summary, or even read a few pages more before buying, I would’ve know how wrong I was.

I bet everyone who had gone off to university has experience this themselves; the feeling of drifting apart from your high school / college best friends when you went your separate way when you started university. I should have known better before reading this book, but somehow, because to me their friendship is so strong, I just assumed that they will still stay the same way despite everything. Because it was the three of them, and I wanted to believe that things like being apart because they don’t attend the same university won’t change their friendship.

This is a normal thing that happens to some people when you start that new chapter in your life: university, when you transitioned from a young adult to a new adult. But it didn’t make it any less sad. And because it happened to Amber, Lottie and Evie —after everything that they went through together in the previous three books— it was even more sad. I cried a lot reading this book, especially since it was so relatable. I felt like I could relate to all three of them, about how they felt; the feeling of being left behind, the feeling of being left out or not liked, the feeling that people didn’t want you around, and the feeling of wanting to go away but not wanting to leave your past behind.

I’ve only talked about how sad it was, but there was also cute moments in the book. I seriously love Kyle, and Oli. Seriously, I do. They are sweethearts. I would say more, but I feel like I would be spoiling everyone. (Although I probably already did with the bits that I’ve wrote).

To sum it up, don’t be fooled by the cover. It was so pretty and cheerful, and the title… You would’ve thought it would be happy and with light feelings, not heavy and sad. But it is totally worth your time, buying and reading this book. I am very sad that this is the end of this series, because I really love the girls so much, and all the other characters. I recommend this book to all YA Contemporary lovers, and those who wants to read a book that would give you a dose of reality about moving on to the next point in life called University.

I rate this book 5 / 5 stars.

 

The Cause of My Heartbreak: Star Trek Fanfictions

As you may or may not know, I love reading, and that includes fanfictions. In fact, most of the time, I spend almost 20 hours a day reading fanfictions. They are my guilty pleasures. The fanfictions I read usually depend on what phase I’m in. For example, if I’m in The Avengers phase, I will only read that fandom’s fanfictions and nothing else. It will take weeks before I shift to another fandom.
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