Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Antisocial by Jillian Blake- Don't Want To Look, Can't Look Away!


When Anna is unceremoniously dumped by her jock boyfriend, she's stunned-- and kind of screwed.  You see, she dumped her friends when she met Palmer, so now no one's talking to her.  To make things worse, she has Social Anxiety Disorder-- and anxiety around Alexandria Prep Academy is about to go to a new level.

Right as Anna's working on getting her friends back, someone hacks the school's app and gains access to everything on everybody's phones.  At first it's just the popular crowd that gets exposed-- but soon enough, no one is safe from having the contents of their phones dumped on a website for all to see.

Antisocial is not a boring book.  I mean, every five minutes someone's deepest, darkest secret is being exposed.  It was almost something that I wanted to look away from, but couldn't.  It's definitely a cautionary tale to teens and young adults, telling them that some personal things are better to be left off of digital devices.

At first, I wasn't sure about Anna.  I didn't really like her, and I didn't like the way she presented Social Anxiety Disorder.  I don't have SAD, so I can't speak to the authenticity of the portrayal, but for having spent time in an in-patient treatment center and now going through an EXTREMELY stressful situation (without the help of any drugs), she seemed oddly non-anxious.

Once the phone leaks started happening though, this book got GOOD.  It was one bombshell secret after another, to the point where I was cringing every time a new one was dropped.  I'd be lying if I didn't say that I like reading about the drama-- but at some point I realized there IS a thing as knowing too much about people.  At some point I wanted to scream "no more!!".

There aren't very many likable characters in this book.  I didn't care for Anna's personality and her friends weren't much better.  Radhika (Anna's former bestie) was a character I thought could have been my favorite-- but it turned out she never she never turned that corner for me.  She was just another mean girl in a book full of them.

The one character that pissed me off more than any of them was a dude named Timmy Tepper.  He capitalized off of the leaks by podcasting every lurid detail, making sure no one missed one juicy secret of his classmates.  Every time he made an appearance, my blood pressure went up.  Pure disgust.

I do have to say I felt like as terrible as the things that got exposed in this book were-- the characters were extremely lucky that it was happening to everybody.  Not saying that it still wouldn't hurt and by humiliating, but the fact that everyone was having their secrets splashed around had to be better than being singled out.  I was sort of relieved for them in a weird way.

The ending was-- okay.  I felt like the mystery aspect of this book was just MEH.  Very anti-climatic. The person who did it isn't a surprise, and there's not a big twist or gotcha moment.  Many things are left undone and unanswered.  I wanted more.

OVERALL: I liked this book despite not really loving the main character.  The best part of this book is the DRAMA and the "don't want to look, but can't look away" secrets that are revealed about EVERYBODY.  Seriously, every single person in this book suffers from too much exposure.  It was sad, but also OMG so salacious.

Date Published: 5/16/2017
How I got this book: Thanks to Penguin Random House for providing me a copy to read and honestly review.
Publisher: Delacorte Press

Add it to your To-Read List!!

My Rating: 3.5/5

Character: Anna Soler
Book: The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart

  • Anna and Ruby are really nothing alike, but Anna would be able to relate to the mental health aspects of the book.  Plus, being over-exposed and public humiliation is definitely something Ruby deals with.

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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday-- Summer TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a really cool original feature/weekly meme created over at The Broke and The Bookish. Each week they post a new Top Ten List that bloggers join in on answering... and today (May 23rd) I'm one of them :)

Today's Topic

Top Ten Books On My Summer TBR

  • Even though Summer is officially a month away, I decided my Summer freebie would be the books at the TOP of my pile for reading this Summer.  These are all musts, mostly because of loving/liking the author's previous works-- but 2 of them I want to read purely based on the awesome descriptions.

1.  I See London, I See France (#1) by Sarah Mylnowski (Pub Date 7/11)- This is one of my fave authors EVER.  And I'm so glad she's writing YA again!

2.  Once and For All by Sarah Dessen  (Pub Date 6/6)- I figured I'll give this one a whirl.  I used to LOVE all of Sarah Dessen's books-- but the last one I read (How to Say Goodbye), I didn't love that much.  I'm hoping to get back in love with this one.

3.  16 Ways to Break a Heart by Lauren Strasnick  (Pub Date 7/25)-Another forever favorite author that I am SO excited has a new book coming out!

4.  First We Were IV by Alexandra Sirowy  (Pub Date 7/25)- New favorite author and I will read allllll the books she writes.

5.  Little Monsters by Kara Thomas  (Pub Date 7/25)- I really liked The Darkest Corners, so I'm excited to read another mystery/thriller by this author.

6.  This is How it Happened by Paula Stokes (Pub Date 7/11)I love the "I can't remember what happened"/amnesia trope.

7.  The League of American Traitors by Matthew Landis  (Pub Date  8/8)- YES!!!  All I have to say is YES!!! Top priority.

8.  What to Say Next by Julie Buxbaum  (Pub Date 7/11)- I didn't LOVE Tell Me Three Things, but I thought I'd give her another shot.

9.  When I Am Through With You by Stephanie Kuehn  (Pub Date 8/1)- I love the awesome disturbing nature of this author's books.

10.  The Dazzling Heights (The Thousandth Floor #2) by Katharine McGee  (Pub Date 8/29)- I am PUMPED to see what happens next in this series.  It's a total guilty pleasure series, but I need those in my life.

What books will you be reading this Summer?

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Monday, May 22, 2017

The Fashion Committee Tour and Giveaway- Review & Book Looks

Hey everyone!!  I'm proud to be part of THE FASHION COMMITTEE by Susan Juby Blog Tour.  Books and Fashion are my 2 faves ever, so when they are combined, I am basically one HAPPY chick.  This book comes out TOMORROW (5/22/17), so lookout for it because it's fun!!

Note: I was provided a copy of The Fashion Committee by Penguin Teen as a #PRHPartner to read and spotlight this book.

Book Summary:

"The Fashion Committee is another winner by one of my all time favorite authors."--Meg Cabot, New York Times bestselling author of the The Princess Diaries and Mediator series.

Charlie Dean is a style-obsessed girl who eats, sleeps, and breathes fashion. John Thomas-Smith is a boy who forges metal sculptures in his garage and couldn't care less about clothes. Both are gunning for a scholarship to the private art high school that could make all their dreams come true. Whoever wins the fashion competition will win the scholarship--and only one can win. 

Told in the alternating voices of Charlie's and John's journals, this hilarious and poignant YA novel perfectly captures what it's like to have an artistic drive so fierce that nothing--not your dad's girlfriend's drug-addicted ex-boyfriend, a soul-crushing job at Salad Stop, or being charged with a teensy bit of kidnapping--can stand in your way. 

With black and white art custom-created by fashion and beauty illustrator Soleil Ignacio, the book is a collector's item, perfect for anyone with a passion for fashion.

Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes | Book Depository

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Let's Talk About Book Boyfriends-- and why it's okay to have them

Here I go again talking about something that I probably should leave alone.  It's been on my mind recently though, so I'm just going to do it anyway--

So I saw a thing on Twitter where someone was saying how gross it was that us non-teen bloggers be crushing on the boys in the teen books that we love.  Now, if I squint really hard, I can see how some people might find this odd.  But the person tweeting this came off as if us YA book lovers are pedophiles for swooning over the boys in the books.  And WOW, I have stuff to say about that.

Let me tell you where I'm coming from:

So, upon reading books like My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick and The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, I had total feels for the boys in the books.  I instantly wanted Jase and Adam (don't judge) to be my book boyfriends.  Total book boy crushes.

The thing is-- I'm not picturing my 30-something-year-old adult self being romantic with those dudes.  I don't WISH they were real 16-17 year-old boys that I could get with.  NO!!!  I'm picturing my TEEN self as having a crush on them.


I don't think there is anything wrong with wishing that you had a Sam from The Creeping or a St. Clair from Anna and the French Kiss in your TEENAGE life.  Or wishing that you were now dating the grown-up version of these guys.

Also, sometimes I just crush on boys for the girls in the book.  As in-- I totally crushed on KENT in Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver FOR Sam.

So, to the people who don't "get" that adults can read and like YA-- and that we can also like the boys in the books in a non-creepy way--- I want to tell you WE CAN and WE DO!!

Let's Talk:
What do YOU think about Adults reading YA romance and enjoying it??  Do you think it's gross to envision your teen self crushing on people in the books?

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Welcome to the FFBC- The Best Kind of Magic by Crystal Cestari

The Best Kind of Magic

by Crystal Cestari
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Fantasy
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Amber Sand is not a witch. The Sand family Wicca gene somehow leapfrogged over her. But she did get one highly specific magical talent: she can see true love. As a matchmaker, Amber's pretty far down the sorcery food chain (even birthday party magicians rank higher), but after five seconds of eye contact, she can envision anyone's soul mate.

Amber works at her mother's magic shop--Windy City Magic--in downtown Chicago, and she's confident she's seen every kind of happy ending there is: except for one--her own. (The Fates are tricky jerks that way.) So when Charlie Blitzman, the mayor's son and most-desired boy in school, comes to her for help finding his father's missing girlfriend, she's distressed to find herself falling for him. Because while she can't see her own match, she can see his--and it's not Amber. How can she, an honest peddler of true love, pursue a boy she knows full well isn't her match?

The Best Kind of Magic is set in urban Chicago and will appeal to readers who long for magic in the real world. With a sharp-witted and sassy heroine, a quirky cast of mystical beings, and a heady dose of adventure, this novel will have you laughing out loud and questioning your belief in happy endings.