Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Anna and the French Kiss by: Stephanie Perkins

Anna and the French Kiss

Edition: Paperback
Pages: 372
Published: December 2nd, 2010
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile 

Purchase: Amazon | Bookdepository

Goodreads Synopsis: 
Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris--until she meets √Čtienne St. Clair. Smart, charming,beautiful, √Čtienne has it all...including a serious girlfriend. 

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?

My Thoughts:
Why have I waited so long to read this?!?! That is what I keep asking myself because I actually liked it. For so long there was so much hype about Anna and the French and it's companion novel, Lola and the Boy Next Door that I just wasn't convinced that I would like this book. I had so many preconceived thoughts and that is what kept me from giving this book a chance. And it doesn't help that I've had this book on my shelf for soooo long. I can say now that I am so happy that I gave it a fair shot because I just love it, and absolutely love the characters.
Stephanie Perkins definitely adds a twist to a romance story because most books make it seem like when two characters see each other for the first time they instantly fall in love and then everything clicks into place happily ever after. Life doesn't work that way though, and that is one of the things that made this book awesome. And then St. Clair!! I thought he was perfect even though he has flaws (which are realistic, compared to the incredibly cute guy that has the perfect abs, hair, etc.) and it just made me like him even more although he really annoyed me at times. Actually St. Clair and Anna gave me a huge headache over and over again. That's what happens though when two people belong together but they have too many hang ups to actually get together. Regardless of my rambling, I am so excited to read Lola and the Boy Next Door. I also like Stephanie Perkins writing style which makes it easier to get into the book. One thing I can say though is that the cover (I have the old covers not the new ones) does this book no justice, and that may have been another thing that put me off from reading this book sooner than I did. Overall, I recommend this book to anyone read it if you haven't!

Favorite Quotes:

  • "Where have you been all my life?" I ask the beautiful panini. "How is it possible I've never had a sandwich like this before?" He takes a large bite. "Mmmph grmpha mrpha," he says, smiling. Which I'm assuming translates to something like, "Because American food is crap."
  • "St. Clair coughs and shifts again. His leg brushes against mine. It stays there. I'm paralyzed. I should move it; it feels too unnatural. How can he not notice his leg is touching my leg?"
  • "Rashmi iss me," Josh said into my phone. "Mer? Put Rashmi on. Iss emergency." "It's not an emergency!" I yelled. "They're just drunk."
  • "Because I was right. For the two of us, home isn't a place. It's a person. And we're finally home."

Final Verdict: 4 Stars

If I Stay by: Gayle Forman

If I Stay (book 1)

Edition: E-book
Pages: 201
Published: April 2nd, 2009
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile

Purchase: Amazon | Bookdepository

Goodreads Synopsis: 
Just listen, Adam says with a voice that sounds like shrapnel.

I open my eyes wide now.
I sit up as much as I can.
And I listen.

Stay, he says.

Choices. Seventeen-year-old Mia is faced with some tough ones: Stay true to her first love—music—even if it means losing her boyfriend and leaving her family and friends behind?

Then one February morning Mia goes for a drive with her family, and in an instant, everything changes. Suddenly, all the choices are gone, except one. And it's the only one that matters.

If I Stay is a heartachingly beautiful book about the power of love, the true meaning of family, and the choices we all make.

My Thoughts:
I have been meaning to read this book for quite sometime now, and finally found the time to read it. Also after hearing so much hype for the movie that is coming out I decided that I want to be in the loop as well. Before reading this, I had no clue what this book was about. The only thing that I had heard was that this was such a heartbreaking story!
I have to say that I am not as in love with this book like most people are. The story is very unique, especially with the events that took place early on in the book, but after that hardly anything happened. With that type of beginning I excepted way more jaw dropping events to happen (which they did...Kind of) but I wasn't really impressed. Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy this book enough to want to go on and read the second book, Where She Went, but this just isn't a favorite of mine since I feel that the majority of this book was filler.

I literally only had one con while reading this book and that was the flipping back and forth from the present and the past. I found it to be confusing at times and boring. When the storyline picked up I found myself not caring to read the past events (I did read them though) because I just wanted to get on with the story.

Overall, I think this is an interesting read that everyone should at least try. Plus it's such a quick read that it will hardly take much of your time. As far as the movie is concerned, I will see it because I am curious as to how they are going to portray Mia since the majority of the book was a lot of "internal reflecting" on her life.

Favorite Quote: "Sometimes you make choices in life and sometimes choices make you. Does that make any sense?"

Final Verdict: 3 Stars

The Gunslinger by: Stephen King

The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower 1)

Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Pages: 231
Published: June 10th, 1982 (1st published)
Publisher: Plume

Purchase: Amazon | Bookdepository

Goodreads Synopsis: Book I
In The Gunslinger (originally published in 1982), King introduces his most enigmatic hero, Roland Deschain of Gilead, the Last Gunslinger. He is a haunting, solitary figure at first, on a mysterious quest through a desolate world that eerily mirrors our own. Pursuing the man in black, an evil being who can bring the dead back to life, Roland is a good man who seems to leave nothing but death in his wake.

My Thoughts:
The Gunslinger is the first installment in The Dark Tower series by: Stephen King.  This story follows Roland a gunslinger (the last one actually) who is on a journey to find "the man in black". While on this journey Roland runs into a few people, including a child name Jake who accompanies Roland for a good portion of his journey until he meets his fate, so to speak. While reading this book you also get a glimpse of Roland's childhood and the world that he lived in, which is much different from the world that Jake once lived in.

What I gathered from this is that this is a post-apocalyptic book with hints of magic in it, and every character has experienced very different lives but can't seem to remember much from their past lives due to something "the dark man" has done. This book was quiet hard for me to follow compared to another Stephen King book that I had read. Events kind of skipped around and certain things were implyed but never really explained so I found myself struggling to understand certain portions of this book. Also some of the lingo that was used was older so that could be a reason as to why I was confused while reading this book.

Overall, I thought this was an ok book, I might feel differently if I re-read this sometime down the road. I will be continuing on with this series though because I have heard that some of Stephen Kings books connect back to the Dark Tower series. My favorite character is Jake hands down!!

Final Verdict: 3 Stars

The Maze Runner by: James Dashner

The Maze Runner #1

Edition: E-book
Pages: 374
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Published: October 6th, 2009

Purchase: Amazon | Bookdepository

Goodreads Synopsis: "If you ain't scared, you ain't human." 

When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his name. He's surrounded by strangers--boys whose memories are also gone.

Outside the towering stone walls that surround the Glade is a limitless, ever-changing maze. It's the only way out--and no one's ever made it through alive.

Then a girl arrives. The first girl ever. And the message she delivers is terrifying.

My Thoughts: I decided to re-read The Maze Runner because I wanted to finish the series, which I started so long ago. The first time I read this was in 2012, so I basically forgot 90 percent of the events that took place in this book.  Looking back on my review from when I first read this book, my opinion has defintely changed.  Before I gave this 5 stars and was completely head over heels about this book because I had never read anything like it. This is the time when I was just getting back into reading again.  Now, after reading so many dystopian books I can say that this is not one of my favorites, like it had been before.  This book is still good and pretty entertaining for the pure fact that I don't know any YA novels that puts kids in a maze and expects them to solve certain "puzzles" in order to gain their life back, even when that means killing several of them.  To be honest, I found the majority of this book to be boring, even when some jaw-dropping incidents were happening.  I think this was because I was annoyed with most of the characters and certain things that I will leave unsaid just seemed to fall into place way to conveniently.  The main character Thomas annoyed me most of the time because of how he acted through this book. Some times he would be completely brave on the most riskiest (and sometimes deadliest) tasks, and then on small things (like stepping up to a bully) he would act so afraid which I didn't understand.  Overall I think that this book is good enough to give it a shot and see how each individual feels about it (some will be blown away and some will not).  I am still interested enough to continue on with the series, especially after reading the epilogue because it seems like these teens may not be as lucky as they thought they were.

Side Note: I did love how the author painted a very descriptive picture of the grievers.  They sound completely horrible and I am so glad that I don't have to come in contact with those things.

Favorite characters: Chuck, Thomas, Teresa, Newt, and Minho

Final Verdict: 3.5 Stars