Review: The Dysasters By P. C. and Kristin Cast

42653040Title: The Dysasters

Author: P. C. & Kirstin Cast

Genre: YA Fantasy

Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia

Publication date: 26 February 2019

Rating: DNF 1/5

Synopsis for Pan Macmillan Australia: 

P. C. and Kristin Cast, the #1 New York Times bestselling authors of the House of Night phenomenon, return to the scene with The Dysasters – the first action-packed novel in a new paranormal fantasy series.

Adoptive daughter of a gifted scientist, Foster Stewart doesn’t live a ‘normal’ life, (not that she’d want to). But controlling cloud formations and seeing airwaves aren’t things most eighteen-year-olds can do.

Small town star quarterback and quintessential dreamy boy next door, Tate “Nighthawk” Taylor has never thought about his “extra” abilities. Sure, his night vision comes in handy during games, but who wouldn’t want that extra edge?

From the moment Foster and Tate collide, their worlds spiral and a deadly tornado forces them to work together, fully awakening their not-so-natural ability – the power to control air.

As they each deal with the tragic loss of loved ones, they’re caught by another devastating discovery – they are the first in a group of teens genetically manipulated before birth to bond with the elements, and worse… they’re being hunted.

Now, Foster and Tate must fight to control their abilities as they learn of their past, how they came to be, who’s following them, and what tomorrow will bring…


*Thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

Ok this review is going to be a little saltier than my regular ones. I just don’t even really know where to start. This book put me in a reading slump almost every time I picked it up! Hence why this review is so late and why I am now so behind on my review books and haven’t read a page of anything in over 2 weeks! I am just so disappointed. I went into this expecting to really enjoy it as I am 1. a sucker for YA fantasy and 2. a huge sucker for elemental magic! This book sounded like such a cool concept and idea but unfortunately, in my opinion, it just did not deliver.

Although this read was a DNF for me I am giving it 1 star still instead of zero because it did have a handful of likeable qualities for me. Firstly as I have already said the idea/concept was a good one, just poorly executed. I also really enjoyed the illustrations throughout the book, every few pages had a comic style insert. Which I thought was a cool and unique idea. I also like that the first main character was tough and didn’t take crap from anyone. But that is where the positives ended for me.

The two main issues for me with this book were the pacing and the character choices/development. The best way I can describe the pacing of this book is like it was the reverse of normal storytelling pacing. Less than 50 pages in there is a big event that results in the destruction of nearly an entire town yet then for the next 200 odd pages nearly nothing happens it feels slow and boring and a little anticlimactic after the dramatic start.

The other issue I have is something I tend to feel about a lot of Cast’s books is that many of the characters feel forced and like the authours are trying to hard to be diverse and put every possible character type/personality etc into the story. Now do not come for me, I am a huge advocate for diverse books and love reads that people can find a little of themselves in and relate to. But when this is done well! When the characters feel like real people and their race, gender and or sexuality feels genuine and real. If that makes any sense. Basically, I don’t think you need to have every type of person represented in your book in order for it to be diverse and when you do try to put that much in, it can feel forced. Which concerns me in terms of how the representation feels to those the characters are meant to be representing.

In conclusion, this book is the first book I have DNF in a very long time. I tried so hard, pushed through for months until finally with only about 70 pages left I just couldn’t waste any more of my time and energy on it. A cool concept that was poorly executed and weirdly paced. This read just was not for me! Let's Chat!

Have you read this one? What did you think of it? What element would you like to control if you could control one? Let me know in the comments below! Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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Review: The universe listens to brave by Rebecca Ray

Rebecca Ray: The Universe Listens To BraveTitle: The universe listens to brave

Author: Rebecca Ray

Genre: Self-help/ non-fiction

Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia

Publication date: 26 March 2019

Rating: 4.5/5

Synopsis for Pan Macmillan Australia: 

This book of wisdom has been written for you: the ones who seek to live with more courage.

Reach for it when you’re setting an intention, making a big decision, doing the work of healing, grieving, creating or learning to love yourself, and you need reminding to keep choosing brave.

This is your invitation to leap into your most expansive life.

Dr Rebecca Ray is a writer, speaker and clinical psychologist. She invites you to contemplate your true self, in its bravest form: the self that is still asking questions. The self that is seeking wisdom. And the self that’s determined to stay open to the possibilities of a life inspired.


*Thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

Happy release day to this beautiful book. Some of you are probably thinking a self-help book? This isn’t her usual gig? And you would be right, I don’t read many self-help books as a lot of them don’t call to me and don’t seem like they are what I need. However as soon as read the title and synopsis of this book I knew I needed to give it a go! You see I have always been someone who overthinks and therefore struggles to do the brave things. I was also diagnosed with anxiety and panic disorder at the start of this year and this book sounded like it could help or at the very least provide some inspiring words.

This book did not disappoint me right from the get go the reading experience is made special just from the visual beauty of the book. The cover is stunning, and the inside is just as pretty with pink monochrome pages throughout. It would make a great gift for a mum or sister based on the visual appeal alone.

Just like the physical appearance of the book the words within are just as beautiful and just as inspiring as I thought. Rebecca relates to the reader by explaining her own experiences with anxiety and trying to live life bravely. And the large amounts of quotes, affirmations and mantras throughout made me feel inspired and like I am not alone in any of the things I am feeling.

In conclusion, this book is absolutely stunning inside and out. I recommend it to anyone who struggles with living bravely or anxiety or really anyone looking for a hit of inspiration.  The only reason this read is not 5 stars for me is because not every single mantra resonated with me. Which is fine! The words that did resonate with me have left a hopefully lasting impression. Which is why I am rating this read 4.5 out of 5 stars. Let's Chat!

Do you read much self-help? Any recommendations? Do you use mantras or affirmations? What are some of your favourites? Until next time happy watching and reading!

 

Review: Enchantée by Gita Trelease

41577908Title: Enchantée 

Author: Gita Trelease

Genre: YA Historical Fantasy

Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia

Publication date: 26 February 2019

Rating: 4/5

Synopsis from Pan Macmillan Australia:

Paris in 1789 is a labyrinth of twisted streets, filled with beggars, thieves, revolutionaries – and magicians . . .

When smallpox kills her parents, seventeen-year-old Camille is left to provide for her frail sister and her volatile brother. In desperation, she survives by using the petty magic she learnt from her mother. But when her brother disappears Camille decides to pursue a richer, more dangerous mark: the glittering court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

Using dark magic Camille transforms herself into the ‘Baroness de la Fontaine‘ and presents herself at the court of Versaille, where she soon finds herself swept up in a dizzying life of riches, finery and suitors. But Camille’s resentment of the rich is at odds with the allure of their glamour and excess, and she soon discovers that she’s not the only one leading a double life . . .

Enchantée is a compelling historical fantasy and is Gita Trelease’s debut novel.


*Thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

I don’t tend to read or enjoy historical fiction very often. This is normally because I find the plots tend to be very slow and a bit of historical information overload. And I also find that authours tend to focus a lot on the positives of a time period while glossing over or not mentioning the negatives of that time. Having said this I believe Trelease has managed to write a story with Enchantée that runs into none of these problems. Overall I really enjoyed this read. 

For me, the fact that this story is an historical fantasy and not just a historical read, allowed for a more multifaceted and fast-paced plot. The magic system is more subtle than many found in the YA fantasy genre. However, it seems to fit so perfectly with the setting and time era. And the way Trelease describes the use and weaving of the magic is just superb. Essentially the magic system is just the magic of illusions, making one thing appear as another or in another way. However, the idea that one needs sorrow to make this magic work, I found unique and allowed the book to have a slightly darker tone. As we all know magic always comes with a price! 

I also think Trelease did a fantastic job of describing the state of Paris in 1789. The way she described and brought Versailles alive made me wish to travel to Paris right away. She managed to give the palace such a whimsical quality while still mentioning the filth and not so royal behaviours. Trelease also did not shy away from describing the darker, negative events and aspects of Paris at this time. The poverty, the civil unrest, the class issues and the beginnings of the revolution. These were all things that made the story seem more real despite being a work of fiction. 

The highlight of this book for me though was the characters. Trelease brought each different character to life so well that despite having issues remembering all the French names and noble titles I could easily distinguish between their personalities and traits. I also love the variety of characters from heroes to villains, nobles to the poor. This book has it all with a strong female heroine, a passionate romance without excessive physical contact, female friendships, scheming villains and monstrous human beings. 

Despite enjoying almost everything about this book I did find the relationship between the main character and her sister to be underdeveloped and at times annoying. I also struggled with the bits of French included. There is a glossary in the back of the book. However, I did not realise this until I was about 3 quarters through. Meaning until then I had to guess at the meaning of what was being said in French. Therefore, I am giving this book a rating of 4 out of 5 stars and would recommend to any lover of YA, fantasy or historical fiction. Let's Chat!Do you read a lot of historical fiction? What is your favourite time period to read about? Do you like reading about magic systems alongside true historical events? Let’s chat in the comments below! Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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Emergency Contact by Mary H. K. Choi Blog Tour

EmergencyContact Banner

Hey, Hi, Hello! 🙂

Welcome to my blog tour stop for the amazing Emergency Contact by Mary H. K. Choi. Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia and AusYABloggers for allowing me to be a part of this tour and sending me a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.

If you would like to follow along with the rest of the tour stops, check out the other stops from today or yesterday’s stops, you can check out the tour schedule here. ❤divider 1

Emergency Contact Book CoverTitle: Emergency Contact

Author: Mary H. K. Choi

Genre: YA Contemporary

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Australia

Publication date: January 1st 2019

Rating: 5/5

Synopsis from Simon & Schuster Australia: 

From debut author Mary H.K. Choi comes a compulsively readable novel that shows young love in all its awkward glory—perfect for fans of Eleanor & Park and To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.

For Penny Lee high school was a total nonevent. Her friends were okay, her grades were fine, and while she somehow managed to land a boyfriend, he doesn’t actually know anything about her. When Penny heads to college in Austin, Texas, to learn how to become a writer, it’s seventy-nine miles and a zillion light years away from everything she can’t wait to leave behind.

Sam’s stuck. Literally, figuratively, emotionally, financially. He works at a café and sleeps there too, on a mattress on the floor of an empty storage room upstairs. He knows that this is the god-awful chapter of his life that will serve as inspiration for when he’s a famous movie director but right this second the seventeen bucks in his checking account and his dying laptop are really testing him. 

When Sam and Penny cross paths it’s less meet-cute and more a collision of unbearable awkwardness. Still, they swap numbers and stay in touch—via text—and soon become digitally inseparable, sharing their deepest anxieties and secret dreams without the humiliating weirdness of having to see each other.Review2

First off can you just look at that cover! LOOK AT IT!!! It’s more beautiful than the crazies in Bird Box find the demons!!! Like the title is a rose gold foil in real life and it is so stunning! Not to mention the artist has done a fantastic job depicting Sam and Penny! I picture them almost exactly like this! Just look at the hair!!

This book has two point of views both Penny and Sam. Now books with multiple POV’s can be really hit or miss for me. Really, they are only a hit if I like all the characters who have a POV. Luckily in this case I loved both characters so actually really enjoyed the deeper insights I got into both of their lives. Trying to pick a favourite main character out of Penny and Sam is hard! I just kind of love them both! Although it was frustrating watching them both make some of the decisions they did!

I loved the writing style of this book. This is a fantastic Debut novel! Great writing!! I loved that the book had both “real life” scenes and text conversations. I also think Choi’s writing style was fresh and unique. The story, but more importantly the way it is written is reliable and emotive. This book made me laugh, made me sad, made me feel like I’m not alone and made me think! This book is not just a light fluffy read, although it definitely has those moments! It manages to also cover some heavier or more serious subject matter such as mental health, substance abuse and rape. So, if any of these things are triggers for you please consider before reading.

On top of great characters, uniqueness and great writing. I also loved this book because of how diverse it is and how much is represented in this book! Obviously, I can not comment on how well everything was represented as I don’t fit into all that was. However, I simply love that this book has such a diverse range of main and side characters from appearance, race, personality, mental health and even socioeconomic standing. As someone who does suffer from anxiety, I will say I thought this was well represented even if I do not share all of the symptoms as the characters, I found I could relate. And one of my favourite things is when I feel I can relate to a book especially in terms of my anxiety! Makes me feel less alone and like its ok.

In conclusion, I found this book to be all around awesome! I 100% do recommend! Congratulations on a fantastic debut Mary H. K. Choi I will 100% be reading any future work! The fantastic writing, characters and unique story line along with some awesome diverse representation convinced me to rate this read 5/5 stars! divider 1About the Author:

Mary_H.K._Choi__credit_Aaron_Richter_.0Mary H.K. Choi is a writer for The New York Times, GQ, Wired, and The Atlantic. She has written comics for Marvel and DC, as well as a collection of essays called Oh, Never Mind. She is the host of Hey, Cool Job!, a podcast about jobs, and is a culture correspondent for VICE News Tonight on HBO. Emergency Contact is her first novel. Mary grew up in Hong Kong and Texas and now lives in New York.

Image credit © Aaron Richter

Twitter: @ChoitotheWorld / Instagram: @ChoitotheWorld / Website: http://www.choitotheworld.com/Let's Chat!Have you read this book? Did you love it as much as I did? What are some other books you feel have good anxiety rep? As always happy watching and reading! 

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Review: Time Crawlers By Varun Sayal

40540847Title: Time Crawlers

Author: Varun Sayal

Genre: Sci-fi Short stories

Publisher: Independently published

Publication date: June 15th 2018

Rating: 2.5/5

Synopsis from Goodreads: 

Alien Invasion, Dark Artificial Intelligence, Time-Travel, High-Tech Mythology, Djinn Folklore, Telekinetics, and life-consuming Cosmic Entities are some major themes in this book which has six tightly-knit, fast-paced Sci-Fi stories.

1. Nark-astra, The Hell Weapon
The weapons he possesses make him the destroyer of worlds, and he burns for revenge. A high-tech take on ancient Indian mythology.

2. Death by Crowd
The dark desires of the masses; darknet websites fueled by a crypto-currency. What lurks in the background – an advanced artificial intelligence?

3. Genie
He rubbed a lamp alright, but what he got was the shock of his life. An entirely sci-fi take on the djinn myth.

4. Time Crawlers
There are individuals who existing in multiple time periods at once, and there are those who know about them….

5. Eclipse
No attacks, no blood-shed, yet there was an invasion and a conquest. Who are these shapeshifter aliens being hounded by an eclipse?

6. The Cave
The fate of an advanced imperial race hangs in balance as a dark celestial entity meets a legendary protector.Review2

Thank you to the author Varun Sayal for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

As the synopsis depicts this is a collection of six sci-fi themed short stories. I generally am not a fan of short stories and short story collections. This is because I am a very character driven person and don’t feel short stories give me enough time to get to know and connect with the characters. This collection was no exception. Just as I started to learn the character names and get a feel for what their personality might be like BAM the story ended and it was time to move onto the next one!

Another thing that bothered me about this collection was the writing style itself. I tried not to think too critically about the writing style as I understand this is a debut collection and self-published, so may not have gone through as big of an editing process. With this being said however there were a number of grammatical errors/ misused words and or extra/ missing words. I also found it hard to determine what age group the author was writing these stories for. I actually personally felt that the writing style changed from story to story some seemed to be written in a middle grade type of way with basic description and wording where as others seemed to be adult fiction with more description, but more thinking required from the reader. For the most part though I felt the writing got better with each story.

As for the stories themselves they were a bit hit and miss for me. Some I found a little boring, confusing and not completely thought through. While others, especially the last few, I found the underling ideas, themes and concepts to be very interesting and unique. I liked how many of the stories had an underling theme of morals and the way they were written made me not only question the morals and actions of the characters but ask myself what I would do in these situations and what my own morals are like. A few of the stories also had some very effective plot twists that I did not always see coming and think could be used to an even bigger effect had the story been a full length novel.

In conclusion I enjoyed the premises of most of the stories and the underlying theme of humanity and morals. Many of the ideas, concepts and technologies had great potential and were unique. However, the inconsistency of the writing style throughout all the stories mixed with my dislike of short stories in general made this collection somewhat hard to read. Therefore, I have given this short story collection 2.5/5 stars. Let's Chat!Do you enjoy short stories? Or do you have similar issues with them like me? What are some of your favourite short story collections and or sci-fi reads? Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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Review: Lisette’s Paris Notebook by Catherine Bateson

31851963Title: Lisette’s Paris Notebook

Author: Catherine Bateson

Genre: YA Contemporary

Publisher: Allen & Unwin 

Publication date: January 2017

Rating: 3.5/5

Synopsis from Goodreads: 

What do you wear to Paris? Ami and I discussed it for hours but I still couldn’t think of anything suitable. Ami said a trench coat with nothing underneath but your best underwear. That was only if some boy was meeting you at the airport, I said.

Eighteen-year-old Lisette has just arrived in Paris (France!) – the city of haute couture and all things stylish – to practise her French and see great works of art. Her clairvoyant landlady Madame Christophe forces her to attend language lessons with a bunch of international students but soon Lise discovers she’s more interested in studying boys than art or verbs …

When the undeniably hot Anders jogs into her life it feels too good to be true. Things get even more complicated when she is pursued by Hugo, a charming English antiques dealer.

Can she take a chance and follow her own dreams? How far into the future can Madame Christophe see? And could Lise really be falling in love – in Paris?Review2

So, as you may already be getting from the bio this book is a YA contemporary romance, coming of age, finding yourself story. The main narrator Lise is an 18 year old Australian girl taking a gap year trip in Paris. It is a very cute quick read. Not only is the main character Australian but the author Catherine Bateson is an Australian making this particular read a #loveozya book. Which I think is fantastic! I love reading and supporting Aussie authors and their books. It’s something I have been thinking I need to consciously make an effort to read more of so this book was the perfect opportunity to do so! 

Quick mention to the cover of this book. I think this book is so cute and all the little pictures really give me young holiday in Paris vibes! Can I pack my suitcase already?? 

The first half of this book is frustrating to read. Not because the story is bad. It isn’t. But because after arriving in Paris and first experiencing the magic of the city the MC quickly starts to make some what I would consider pretty stupid choices. So, this is frustrating to watch unfold as I just know it will end badly. I had to constantly remind myself that the MC was only 18 and that if she didn’t make these mistakes this story wouldn’t be one of self-growth and discovery. Another negative for me was that although this book had many cute and whimsical travel abroad vibes. There were also a number of parts I found particularly cringe worthy instead of cute. For example, there is a part where the MC and a love interest are discussing her previous intimate experience and as she is shy to talk about it, he uses a doll like a ventriloquist to make her comfortable enough to tell him. I see the cute moment the author was trying to go for here. But I was cringing the whole time. 

On a more positive note after the first 100 pages I started to find Lise a lot less annoying. Even though she still didn’t always make the right decisions I found most interactions less cringey. I enjoyed seeing her grow and become more comfortable in Paris and the relationships she was building were really pulling me in. I also enjoyed reading about all the different activities and places she visited in Paris. The way the author described them had a magical, whimsical quality that made me want to book a flight straight away. I also adored the main love interest and once he came into the picture found myself wanting to just keep reading and hoping like hell it would all work out for them both! 

In conclusion, this book didn’t make it to my top favourite reads. Because of the cringe factor and my frustration with some of the MC’s actions. However, I did overall really enjoy it. Because of the cute romance and the travel lust it inspired. I think it really achieved an appropriate self-growth, young adult coming of age story. Which is why I am rating this book 3.5 stars. Let's Chat!What is a place you want to visit most in the world? Does Paris make your list? What are some of your favourite #loveozya titles and authors? Chat with me in the comments below! Until next time Happy watching and reading! 

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November wrap up

Wrap up

Reading:

This month was a very slow reading month for me! I have been slumping hard and have been lacking the motivation to read, I hope it changes soon! 😦 As I read a dismal 1.5 books this month!

  • It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover. This is an adult contemporary  book. This book was very emotional and sparked my discussion about trigger warnings. My rating is 4/5.
  • Lisette’s pairs Notebook by Catherine Bateson. This is a YA contemporary, I am currently only about half way through. I actually won this book as a part of a prize pack from Allen and Unwin Australia. It is pretty cutesie so far about a 3/5.

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Watching:

So my reading may have been dismal this month but thanks to that I had a really good watching month. I managed to watch quite a few different things and I really enjoyed them all! 🙂

Movies:

  • The Christmas Chronicles. Yes I have started watching Christmas movies already. And you know what? I loved this one! A solid 5/5.

TV:

  • Charmed (original), most of season 1.
  • Riverdale, season 2 and season 3 so far.
  • The chilling adventures of Sabrina , some of season 1.
  • The Bold type, season 1 & 2.
  • The Last ship, season 1 and 2.

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Blog:

I am pretty pleased with what I managed to get out on the blog during November. Mostly because of my discussion post. I don’t know why but I don’t come up with discussion posts easily and sometimes when I do I think maybe no one else will find them interesting. But I was really happy with how this one turned out and the discussion it started!

Posts: 

Tag: The Mid Autumn festival tag

Review: It Ends With US by Colleen Hoover

Discussion: The importance of trigger warnings

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Life:

I am still busy planning my wedding! We are less than 3 months out now so everything is getting down to the fine details and I am very excited and anxious for everything to go right.  We finally sent out the invitations and now I am just stressfully running around trying to make sure I don’t forget anything!  Work has also been pretty stressful lately as we have been low on staff. But on the up side we will have new staff to help out in the new year and I got my first ever promotion!! Look at me being and adult and stuff! 🙂

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How did I go on my goals for November:

  • Read at least 4 books.  HAHA what a absolute fail! Fingers crossed for better luck in December!
  • Post on my blog at least 4-6 times. – So I might not have reached the amount of posts I wanted to but I am actually pretty proud of the content so I would call that a win!
  • Finalise all things wedding related. – Again not everything is done but we have been making heaps of progress lately so another win!
  • Reach out/ get involved with more publishers/ companies I love. (not sure how realistic or how I will go about this! But we shall see!) – I have recently been given some amazing advice and support from some amazing bookstagram friends in the whole working with publishers and putting yourself out there thing. So I am excited to try to put it into action and see where it goes!
  • Comment more on other blogs/ bookstagram & interact more in general. – I have definitely worked really hard on this one! So goal completed but it is something I intend to keep up!
  • Drink more water/ eat healthier!  – Like always I tried and failed haha there is always December right?
  • Try to stress less and relax more. – HAHA with the wedding and work I think not!

December Goals:

  • Read at least 4 books
  • Post at least 4 times on the blog. And start to make plans for the blog for next year!
  • Keep working on trying to make more bookish connections and putting myself out there.
  • Drink more water/ eat healthier!
  • Enjoy the holidays with my family and at least for those days try not to stress!

Let's Chat!

How did November treat you guys? Favourite book you read this month? Anything you are excited to read in December? Any goals for December? As always, happy reading and watching!

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Discussion: The importance of trigger warnings

Discussion

I wanted to discuss the idea of trigger warnings after my latest book review. I reviewed the book It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover. You can see the review here for reference. The Goodreads synopsis for this book has a very basic warning about the content which reads “This book contains graphic scenes and very sensitive subject matter”. However, my paperback version of the book has no content or trigger warnings what so ever.

I mention in my review that I had no clue what to expect going into the book and based on the blurb I had assumed the book would be a love triangle. Was there romance? Yes, but just as the Goodreads synopsis suggests the book mainly revolved around much heavier subject matter of domestic abuse and homelessness. Neither of which are directly mentioned in any way in the blurb. And this is essentially what has prompted this discussion for me. As even I a person who fortunately has no personal experience with either issue was left emotionally raw at the end of the book. Which lead me to contemplate how much worse I would feel and what I would need to try to deal with if I had experienced either of those things in my past.

These thoughts were further pushed on when a reader Jillian (who I am unable to link to at this time) commented on my review. She mentioned that Hoover has actually received backlash multiple times over the years for not putting trigger warnings on many of her books. This was not something I was aware of and it shocked me. It makes me wonder how many other books and authors have had similar issues. Why is this something that is allowed to happen? Especially on matters that could severely emotionally hurt someone, or event mentally hurt a person. Is it a fear of ruining the experience of the story for others? As in, is it treated by some as a spoiler if there is a warning for certain content?

Which leads me to ask, in which case is a blanket warning like the one Goodreads has used enough or a happy medium? As this essentially warns people of potentially difficult subject matter without spoiling anything in my opinion. It gives people with triggers an opportunity to think twice and even look up what the difficult or sensitive subject matter could be, in order to make and educated decision on whether or not to read the novel in question. I think this should be something to be considered for all books that deal with triggering issues. However, some people may not think that this is enough. Should we have more specific warnings? And if so where do we draw the line?

I think this is a matter that really needs to be considered by authors, the publishing industry and readers alike. I mean things that are aired on TV and in the movies are required to firstly give a maturity rating. Which essentially books also do by placing the reads into children’s, MG, YA, NA and Adult. But TV and films also need to mention what makes the content possibly troubling e.g. coarse language, violence, sex scenes and drug use. Which lets the viewer decide if they are comfortable watching something that may involve these things. This clearly is something that books are not required to have. Although I do know that some do. The back of some of Sarah J. Maas books for example include a warning about content that is of a sexual nature. So, it is clearly possible to give some kind of a warning for those that may need it. So why isn’t this required? This is potentially an issue that will have many varying opinions and may be multi-faceted, but I personally believe that it is something that needs to be discussed and looked into further. Let's Chat!What are your opinions on trigger warnings? Do you think at the least books should be required to have content warnings like TV and movies? Is a blanket statement about heavy content enough? Or do the warnings need to be more specific? Discuss with me below! 

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Review: It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover

29626641Title: It Ends with Us

Author: Colleen Hoover

Genre: Adult Contemporary

Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK

Publication date: August 2016

Rating: 4/5

Synopsis from Goodreads: 

SOMETIMES THE ONE WHO LOVES YOU IS THE ONE WHO HURTS YOU THE MOST

Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. She’s come a long way from the small town in Maine where she grew up – she graduated from college, moved to Boston, and started her own business. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true.

Ryle is assertive, stubborn, and maybe even a little arrogant. He’s also sensitive, brilliant, and has a total soft spot for Lily, but Ryle’s complete aversion to relationships is disturbing.

As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan – her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.

With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer. It Ends With Us is an unforgettable tale of love that comes at the ultimate price.

This book contains graphic scenes and very sensitive subject matter..

Firstly, I want to mention the blurb of this book and give credit to Goodreads for their synopsis. My version of the book does not include the line “This book contains graphic scenes and very sensitive subject matter.”  And I think it very smart and considerate of Goodreads for including it now. Going into this read as my book didn’t mention this I was expecting a love triangle with a little drama and a lot of romance! 

Let me tell you this book was so much more and really does cover some pretty heavy and sensitive subject matter! Through the first few chapters I thought this book was exactly what I expected a grown-up romance, love triangle with a touch on the serious topic of homelessness and domestic violence via the main characters parents. I found myself getting emotionally invested, picking a “team” and hoping they would be OTP.  This book is so well written in the way that you feel without meaning to the main characters emotions completely. Being an empath and an emotional person, this was great at first. I mean it was hard to read about the struggle of the MC’s childhood, but I was so happy and excited and feeling the love with the romance developing. I was falling hard as she was. So, I was very emotionally invested when things took a much darker turn then I was expecting. 

The MC experiences domestic violence of her own. And it is not glossed over, and it is graphic and intense. Because of the way the book is written I was already invested in her life and in the relationship. So, as I wasn’t expecting this it hit me hard in the feels. And because of the empathetic emotional person I am this meant I was in this for the long haul. I stayed up until 2 am reading trying to work through these feelings with the MC, struggling as she was going through emotional turmoil, I laughed, I stressed and I bawled my god damned eyes out, but I had to see how this story ended. 

For days after I felt emotionally raw and I could not stop thinking about the story and it definitely made me think and question things I had never thought about before. On the one hand I think this means the book was incredibly written. Anything that can make you feel so much is not a badly written piece. So, I knew I would rate this book highly. But I also knew I couldn’t give this book a full 5 star review. And not just for the handful of grammatical errors/ typos. But because my version of the book had no content and or trigger warnings at all. And sure, maybe with them this book may not have caused me to feel so much emotion. But the fact that it doesn’t have any warning and me as a person who has been fortunate enough not to experience any of these issues in her own life was this emotionally wrecked by it. I can only imagine what it might emote in someone who has if they were to read this unsuspectingly. And I do not think that is fair at all. At the very least all versions of this book should have the warning the Goodreads synopsis does, but it’s clearly a little late for that now. Therefore, I gave this read 4 out of 5 stars. 

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Do you think all books should have trigger and or content warnings? Until next time Happy watching and reading! 

THE MID-AUTUMN FESTIVAL TAG!

Hello lovely people! Today I bring you a cute, quick tag. I was tagged by the absolutely incredible Orangutan Librarian. If you are not following this blog already what are you even doing with your life?!

I could not find the original creator of the tag! 😦 So, if you know please let me know so I can credit them! All covers are either from Goodreads or photos taken by me.

So even though we are finishing up spring and heading into summer here in Australia, here are my answers to the mid-Autumn festival tag.

REUNION OF FAMILY

NAME A BOOK WITH FAMILY GOALS

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I love the dynamics between Pearl and her brother and sister in Valentine by Jodi McAlister. You can tell they love each other dearly but their dynamic is very different from the average family.

FULL MOON

NAME A BOOK WITH A WEREWOLF

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The very first book I read with Werewolf’s in the story. Although I like Jacob I was team Edward and team vampire all the way. I have read many other books featuring werewolf’s but this book started it all for me. 🙂

MOONCAKES

NAME A KIND OF FOOD IN A BOOK THAT YOU WISH WAS REAL

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Chocolate frogs from the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling. I am the biggest sweet tooth and these sound like they would be my favourite snack for the train ride to Hogwarts!

RABBIT

NAME YOUR FAVOURITE CREATURE FROM A BOOK

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Abraxos my sweet baby!! He is the creature to rule all creatures! He is EVERYTHING!!!!!! Just in case you didn’t know Abraxos is a wryven from the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas. And I have still NOT read Kingdom of Ash yet so please no spoilers!!!

CHANGE

A CHARACTER THAT MAKES A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE TO THE PLOT SINCE HE/SHE DID SOMETHING TOO MANY TIMES

So, I don’t really get this question. Like a character that makes mistakes all the time? Or an annoying character so they ruined the book? Or a scheming character that just kept trying to make their plans come to life??

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I am going to go with the last one and say Leigh Bardugo’s The Darkling. He is one determined character and his actions push the plot on in more than one occasion.

LANTERNS

NAME A TOY OR GAME IN A BOOK THAT YOU LIKED TO READ ABOUT

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Wizards Chess in the Harry potter books by J. K. Rowling. I find the Muggle version pretty boring and not for me. But The magical version sounds much more action packed and interesting!

AUTUMN

NAME A BOOK WHICH YOU FEEL IS THE BEST TO READ IN AUTUMN

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I don’t really match my reads to the seasons. I am more of a mood reader and just read whatever I feel like despite the time of year. However, this book and in fact the entire series gives off very Autumn/ Halloweeny type vibes. Maggie Stiefvater made a really magical world in The Rave Cycle series.

FESTIVAL

NAME YOUR FAVOURITE FESTIVAL IN A BOOK

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I have to go with Winter Solstice in ACOFAS by Sarah J. Maas as well. It was just so magical and sounds like it would be a beautiful time full of love, family and friends. In fact, I like many of the celebrations in this world, seems like there is a different party every week! ❤

Tag you’re it!

Tay from Aussie book lover Tay / KD from rattlethestars_books / Michaela from Journey into books. Let's Chat!

What is your favourite thing about Autumn? What is your favourite fictional food? I struggled with this question the most! Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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