Posts Tagged With: YA

I’LL GIVE YOU THE SUN by JANDY NELSON

Sun? If it wont give you the sun, i don’t know what else, since this is one of the most illuminating reads i had ever set my eyes on. No confusion at all, just the right flow of the story. Jumping back and forth of the past and present between the two main characters is sometimes confusing but not Noah and Jude. Their parts were totally aligned, even the POVs were clear as daylight. You know who was telling the side of the story and you immediately jump to his or her account. You immediately relate and you instantly become him or her. Noah or Jude, it doesn’t matter.

And why wont you become Noah and Jude? They are interesting characters. Both of which are lovable, witty, funny and artistic, but imperfect in their own ways. Nasty and sometimes cruel, there’s always a reason behind those acts. The end justifies the means, as they always say, but these flaws were the ones that made them whole in the end. Both broken but finding their pieces. Situations and things helped them find and put them back together. CSA, Devil’s Drop, studio, the church and its pews, Woodbird, leather jacket, meteriotes, ladder and rooftop, oranges and onions, sketches and sandwomen. But mostly, people helped them. “Maybe some people are just meant to be in the same story,” no matter how odd their part will be. Mom and Dad, Brian, Oscar, Guillermo, even the parrot too.

One of the more entertaining reads, if i may add. Why so? Because of how the author used words to describe. A lot of words, actually, but thats the point. Clear and lucid and very picturesque. In my mind, Noah and Jude became alive. I love how she painted the world in Noah’s sketches, Noah’s broken heart and broken dreams. I love how Jude turned herself and her world upside down, and back up again. I love how detailed she become when it comes to setting the mood, the feels, the aches and pains, the elated joy, the overall emotions in the story, rollercoaster ride or calm as a still water. I love how smooth the transition even though the scene was heartbreaking or overwhelming. I love. I love. I love. I could go on and on, but i really would want you to experience it by yourself. That laughing out loud, that harrumphing when annoyed, that disappointed and broken feeling, that squeals and feels for delight, disgust, or mixed emotions. She showed them all, quite comprehensibly.

I cannot help but to love Jandy Nelson, more and more! This is the second book that i read from her, THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE, being the first.
I remember how confused I was with her word-building and too much descriptions back then but now ive realized that was the secret. She did it on purpose so you can thoroughly enter the world she wants you to see and live in. That book took me by storm. I remember how i loved her characters back then, Lennie and Toby, big no. But Lenny and Joe, big yes. Joe Fontaine is such a sweetheart.

But I’LL GIVE YOU THE SUN is another masterpiece. NOAHandJUDE.
I just finished reading minutes ago, and i sure feel the good vibes that it left behind. So go ahead, turn that very first page. Let’s start remaking the world.

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Categories: authors, book review, books | Tags: , | 5 Comments

47. SECOND CHANCE SUMMER by Morgan Matson

second chance summer

 

The plot is not something as new and not extraordinary. In fact, it has the common theme of family, love and friendship drama. Just the heavy topic of death hovering the lead page. But the simplicity of how it is written, of how it is centered on one place, made the story personal, heart-melting even.

It mainly focused on the family aspect. While struggling to accept the fact that a loved-one might be gone in 3 months or four, the whole Edwards family went back to their old summer house in Lake Phoenix, after 5 long years. Mom, Dad, Big brother Warren, Little sister Gelsey and Mid-child Taylor. All were used to the comforts of the city and their individual busy lives there that when they found out that Dad has stage 4 cancer, it was decided that they should spend the summer, the “maybe-last summer” together in the familiar and homey place of their lakehouse.

Unwillingly, Taylor, was half-heartedly dragged home due to some personal reasons. She left some unfinished business 5 years ago, and would not want to confront her fears. It allegedly involved Lucy, her former bestfriend, and Henry, her first love. Now that she came back, meeting them was inevitable. But the fact that Taylor knew she was the one at fault before, she had to make some amends and rekindle the friendships.

The summer was just like any summer. Beach, dock, movies under the stars, bicycle rides, flip-flops, kisses, falling stars, ice cream and cake and more. But the best thing about Taylor’s summer was the chance that she got to make all things right. With her family, especially with her dad. I love the scenes when they sneak out to have their quality time, like breakfasts and getting to know each other questions. I really loved that! I was overwhelmed with the fact that they get to say their respective goodbyes. That while facing and accepting death is not an easy thing to handle, the whole family faced it together. They had the best last summer together!

Henry and Lucy and Warren and Gelsey and other sub characters made the story more interesting. I was just quite disappointed on how the revelation of Taylor’s not wanting to go back because of what happened 5 years ago turned out. I just thought it was that silly. But when i come to think of it, it was very Taylor. Because she was this person who always run away when the going gets tough, when life for her becomes hard. It was not a good trait of her, and i hate her for that. She was that coward in every little thing.

This is a story about family. And love between them, between friends, between lovers. This will make you appreciate more the life that you have and the time that you get to spend with your loved ones. Don’t waste opportunities when you can be with your family and friends dear to you. Always show them that you care. Always tell them that you love them. Because no matter how easy going your life maybe now, you don’t know when the time will be up. You don’t want to have regrets in the end.

Over all, the writing is simple and easy to comprehend. The vivid details made you know more about the characters and the setting. The fact that i love the beach and the sun and summer. Plus the fact that i get to learn classic movies to watch out for, Casablanca and the Thin Man. I learn to appreciate the book not only for the story itself but the things i get to learn from it. Now, i know what to do with my lazy coffee bondings with friends and families, get to know more with q & a’s. ūüôā

NOW WATCHING CASABLANCA.  Thanks SECOND CHANCE SUMMER for introducing this to me.

I have a full copy here, though. ¬†But i’m sharing you the trailer of the Youtube link, anyway.

 

My favorite quote:

“Of all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world, she walks into mine. — Rick”

“Awwwww… wait, quick info. ¬†I’ve been to Casablanca, Morocco already. My stay was short and sweet, cultural and of course, ¬†a taste of modern times, year 2006. ¬†Casablanca movie was year 1942, a lot had changed already. ¬†Still, i enjoyed it though. ¬†CLASSIC! — arjaye”

Categories: book review, books, favorite lines | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

27. LOVE LETTERS TO THE DEAD by Ava Dellaira (book review)

Dear May,

Ive’ been wanting to tell you, Laurel made me one such lonely girl. ¬†Forgive me for this but the entire story, she made ¬†me feeling down. ¬†When you died, you see, she kept it all to herself. ¬†Let it be known to the dead, whom ¬†no longer be able to answer her letters back or impart some words of wisdom to sooth her confused mind, the burden was all passed to me. ¬†Since I am still a part of the living world, I have to carry all her angst, her loneliness, her grief in this world. ¬†To her family, to his friends, to her first love, whom she cannot be open to and share her feelings. ¬†I saw it in her eyes how she relive you and more of your precious moments together. ¬†The happy ones and the sad ones as well. ¬†As i hear her think of all the times that led you to that fateful night, each revelation was like one step to the burning fire. ¬†I got scared every time she was peeling off layers and layers of ¬†truths around you and your death. ¬†I was so anxious to know. ¬†In the same way, I want to know you more personally. ¬†But it will never happen now. ¬†The faeries and the wings, by the way, was such a hit. ¬†Even i would believe it if I was your sister, too.

I don’t like it when Laurel wrote about your relationship with Paul and Billy. ¬†Sounded like real trouble to me! ¬†I would have gladly let her share it with Sky, I know he can be trusted. But it was between me and Laurel alone. All of it. ¬†That we had to tackle all her doubts and fears, joys and pain, the forgiving and forgetting part. ¬†When she entered highschool, with you being gone, broken family, Mom moving out, ping-pong stay with Dad and Jesus-fearing Aunt Amy, no friends, a past trying to get away from, fitting in, then finally having friends for real, liking somebody, loving Sky and Sky loving her back. ¬†And dumping her soon enough, for lame excuses that don’t matter. ¬†Or they really do matter! ¬†It was not that an easy life to handle for her, you know. ¬†After all, she was just a teenager. ¬†And you were no longer to guide her through this. ¬†Don’t get me wrong, May. ¬†I know you don’t want any of this. ¬†You don’t have any choice. ¬†It just happened.

Actually, the writing to the dead part doesn’t bother me. ¬†It was why Laurel was doing that made me wonder how bad you and your little sister had to endure those last few moments you were together. ¬†What happened to you was sad, even tragic. ¬†Like what happened to all those people she had written letters to. ¬†Kurt Cobain, Amelia Earhart, Amy Winehouse, Jim Morrison, and the list goes on. ¬†Their death put everybody including the people they don’t know in grief and misery. ¬†But in taking a glimpse of their lives when still living, shed a light on how normal people they can be. ¬†It even made me understand how from their background, life took them to different paths.

Laurel really took your passing away so hard that it was sucking away the happiness in her life.  Sky, who at some point, almost gave up on her.   But when i came to know the truth, the reason behind all those feelings, I now understood.  What happened to her, also, was sad and depressing.  But lets be thankful to those who helped her get back on her feet again.  Special mention to friends, Hannah and Natalie, Tristan and Kristen, Mom and Dad, Aunt Amy and Mrs. Buster.  They were not perfect but their imperfections made Laurel accept and understand the world more.  I wish you could have met them all, when you were still here.  You will like them, for sure!

Life has to move on, even when you are no longer around. ¬†You will not be forgotten, May. ¬†But accepting and letting you go, in some way helped clear Laurel’s path to enjoying each and everyday of her life.

She really looked up to you May.  She loved you more than anything.  You were such an amazing sister, an inspiration even though you were as flawed as you can be.

She loved you then, she still loves you now.  Laurel misses you so badly.  But until you meet again, you will be her one and only star, or fairy with the most beautiful and strong wings, for that matter.

Yours,

Arjaye

LoveLettersToTheDead

GOODREADS’ SUMMARY:

It begins as an assignment for English class: Write a letter to a dead person. Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain because her sister, May, loved him. And he died young, just like May did. Soon, Laurel has a notebook full of letters to people like Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse, Amelia Earhart, Heath Ledger, and more; though she never gives a single one of them to her teacher. She writes about starting high school, navigating new friendships, falling in love for the first time, learning to live with her splintering family. And, finally, about the abuse she suffered while May was supposed to be looking out for her. Only then, once Laurel has written down the truth about what happened to herself, can she truly begin to accept what happened to May. And only when Laurel has begun to see her sister as the person she was; lovely and amazing and deeply flawed; can she begin to discover her own path.

 

MY TAKE ON THE BOOK:

Sad and happy at the same time.  I guess, this is the kind of reaction Ms. Ava Dellaira is hoping to get from anybody who reads her story.  Yes, this book might deceive you passing as a young adult novel.  But be aware that though it involved teenagers, it is as depressing a bad life in real world anybody can get.  Yes, it made me feel down, almost all the time but it was only an indication on how effective her writing was.  At the end, it all boils down to whether you relate yourself with the story or you learn something from it.  Books like these, tackling the relationship between sisters, will always have a place in my reader-heart.  I have my one and only sister, and these kind of books made me really appreciate her more.  Treasuring each and every second with her, fightings and making fun with and about us, included. I will be more than happy to take the bad with the good, as long as as we experience life together and grow old together.

I learned a lot, too. ¬†From biographical points to wisdoms in life. These celebrities’ pasts can be quite informative and helpful, though sometimes, it felt to much for me. ¬†Information-overload as you may have it, ¬†from some of those unnecessary letters that can be omitted and still come up with a good book that conveys those messages you want the reader to know and learn from. ¬†But if everything is to be regarded, this book is as effective and touching that it encouraged me to do like what Laurel did. ¬†A letter to May.

After all, MAY is one of the more famous names now. ¬†Love Letters to the Dead is one good book in the literary world nowadays, that makes her one dead celebrity, right?!. ¬†ūüôā

 

“‚ô•¬†‚ô•¬†‚ô•¬†‚ô•”

 

Categories: book review, books | Tags: , , , , , | 9 Comments

10. VAMPIRE ACADEMY by Richelle Mead

va

Ill just have to admit it.¬† I jumped into reading the Vampire Academy because it is hitting the big screen this month of the year.¬† Ive been seeing a lot of the series in the reviews, Goodreads, bookstores, must read lists, YA’s, but never getting near on any pages of it‚Ķ until i saw the trailer.¬† It made me curious, but not impressed.

THE TRAILER

 

THE BOOK

The opening plot was so engaging.¬† It was like i really pictured them on my mind.¬† Portland.¬† Normal neighborhood.¬† People, human.¬† Roommates, Rose and Lissa.¬† One of those nights when people gets nightmare.¬† Nothing peculiar about it.¬† But when you look closely, and as you turn the page, you will see that nothing is so normal when you let your friend drink blood from you.¬† When somebody was watching you over your window, creepy as it seems.¬† And most especially when somebody, rather a group of people went on chasing you and your roommate, only to be cornered and dragged away back to the place you’ve been trying to escape from two years ago.¬† Thats how the story started.¬† Vampires.

Going back to the Academy was the last thing Rose Hathaway and Vasilissa Dragomir wanted.¬† Unfortunately, Dmitri Belkov was successful in doing them so. ¬† They came back by force.¬† And the lives they were able to dodge for 2 years kept on pouring to them.¬† The school, classes, classmates, the “royals”, past lovers, new friends, professors, detentions, pranks, cliques, popular, enemies, Kirova, guardians.¬† Back to the same old ways.¬† Like the normal school that you know, with classes, and trainings and gyms, except this Academy is different.¬† This is for vampires.¬† Dhampirs and Morois.¬† They have wards and spells fully protecting the academy away from the Strigois.

A quick vocabulary review:

Dhampirs are half-human, half vampire.  They are the future guardians of the Morois.

Morois are the mortal vampires.  They are alive, mortal and born.

Strigoi, on the  other hand are undead.  They are immortal and are made as opposed to born.

 

Rose is a dhampir.  Lissa is a Moroi, a royal Moroi.  Rose and Lissa shares a bond, no other people in the Academy had experienced.  They are inseparable.  But Rose has to undergo a lot of trainings to be ready as the guardian of Lissa in the near future.  Enters Dmitri, a god-like super hot older guardian with a Russian accent, that will be the crushing object of Rose.  Enters Christian Ozera, from a family with a not so good reputation.  He will be the apple of the eye of Princess Lissa.

Coming back to the Academy was not as simple as they hoped for.  There were a lot of controversies, speculations, lies, secrets.  Everybody.  This was the core of the story.  Unravelling all the questions and mysteries and looking for the answers were the main objectives.  In the end, you will definitely feel you already belong to this Academy, to have known each and everybody there.  To be part of their secrets and affairs, and dances and lunch.

Of course, love was in the air.  Or lust for that matter.  I really like the pairings, Ms. Richelle Mead, no matter how very very predictable it was.  Definitely, i will be looking forward to see how they mortalized Rose and Dmitri, Lissa and Christian on the big screen.

MY THOUGHTS: 

I cannot compare Vampire Academy to other vampire books.   It has its own taste of the underworld.  The author made us peer into that world in a school like manner, younger and modern.  Hogwarts for Harry Potter like.  And Rose is not Bella of the Twilight, definitely.  The strong, brave, and kick-ass character made it more interesting.  Not so damsel in distress drama,wild and dangerous though, leaning more on the troublesome and stubborn side of the lead female.  Even bad decisions lead to good outcomes it may seem.

The impact of this book to me is not that strong as the other serial books in the market.  But nevertheless, i had a good ride reading the journey of Rose and Lissa together.  It was like ive also experienced what they had experienced.  It was like a momentarily tap in their heads, and in their feelings.  Like the power that Rose and Lissa shares, in their bond.

A fresh touch on vampires as opposed to other stories written about them.¬† I would definitely continue reading the books, but not in a hurry to really devour on them. ¬† On the brighter side… i think i just love the book more than its movie counterpart!

Categories: book review, books | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

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