Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Pocket Book Reviews {October 2015} + Giveaway

Wow, what an eclectic mix of books I read this month! Romance, steampunk, non-fiction, family drama, and fantasy. Then again, most months I read an assortment of novels. I'm not sure why, but I like jumping from genre to genre. Once I satiate my desire to read something romantic, I then went to jump into fantasy or burn my fingers on the pages of a thriller because I'm turning the paper so fast. Are you the same? Do you stick to one genre or jump around?

P.S. -- I wrote a book review blog post for Holl & Lane!

A Little Something Different
★★★ (5 out of 5)

Written by Sandy Hall; Everyone who sees or interacts with them believes that Gabe and Lea should be together because they're in the same creative writing class and like all the same things, but Lea is shy and Gabe has issues. It looks like they're never going to get together, but something is happening between them. 

This book is the definition of cute! It's not your typical romance and that's what I loved about it. It's romance for reserved introverts like me. What I loved about this story is the fact that the whole book is told through everyone else's point of view but Gabe and Lea's (even a squirrel's!), and yet you get to know these two characters so well. Cute to the max! 

★★ (2 out of 5)

Written by Dina L. Sleiman, Gwendolyn longs to be a knight like her chivalrous brothers. However, that is not an option for her, not even in the Arthurian-inspired Eden where she dwells. Her parents view her only as a marriage pawn. Tournaments, intrigue, and battles--along with twists and turns aplenty--await these two as they struggle to find love, identity, and their true destinies.

DNF at 57% | I can't finish this book. I just find it so boring. I keep waiting for something interesting to happen, but I simply don't care enough about the characters to keep going. It feels like any other Medieval romance. Nothing feels new. The love interest, Sir Allen, is too perfect and not believable. The only character I really liked is Rosalind, Gwen's maid. Also, this book was too religious for me. This isn't exactly a problem, considering the time the book takes place, but it's just not my cup of tea. I think I was deceived into thinking the main character Gwen would be this ass-kicking heroine who goes off on an adventure wearing armor because of the cover, but was sorely disappointed.

Locke & Key
★★★ (5 out of 5)

Written Joe Hill, Locke & Key is the six-part story of Keyhouse, a mansion with fantastic doors that transform all who dare to walk through them. Home to a hate-filled and relentless creature that will not rest until it forces open the most terrible door of them all. A family (mother, teenage son and daughter, and a kid son) moves into the house, the father's childhood home, after the father's brutal murder, but soon the kids discover that the house can do strange and incredible things. 

This series is absolutely fantastic! It's a graphic novel series about the three children (Tyler, Kinsey, and Bode) and by the end of the first volume I was rooting for them. It's definitely a dark and graphic with adult themes, but it also has moments of humor and child-like wonder. It has a scary elements, but I wouldn't call it horror either.

One Plus One
★★★ (4 out of 5)

Written by Jojo Moyes; Jess' teenage stepson is being bullied, her math whiz daughter needs to go to a better school, but she can't afford it, and her husband is gone. But then Ed, the obnoxious tech millionaire, decides to drive her family (and their dog) to Scotland for a math competition. Maybe this trip won't be so bad...

I found this book absolutely delightful. It's laugh out loud funny, raw, and heart-warming. I think one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much was because I listened to the audiobook. The book is read by four different actors as the four main characters (Jess, Ed, Nicky, and Tanzie), which made me feel like I was listening to a movie. 

Batgirl of Burnside (Vol. 1)
★★★ (5 out of 5)

Written by Cameron Stewart, Babs Tarr, and Brenden Fletcher; Barbara Gordon is no stranger to dusting herself off when disaster strikes, so when a fire destroys everything she owns, she spots the opportunity for a new lease on life and moves to Burnside. As the hero of Burnside, Barbara begins building an all-new Batgirl. 

This was my first time reading anything about Batgirl and I really enjoyed it. This story has a YA slant, but I was expecting that from the selfie-taking Batgirl on the cover. I thought it was a fun and cheeky read that doesn't take itself to seriously. And now I want to read more Batgirl stories. 

Marvel 1602
★★★ (3 out of 5)

Neil Gaiman, Andy Kubert, Richard Isanove, and Peter Sanderson present a unique vision of the Marvel Universe set four hundred years in the past. Classic Marvel icons such as the X-Men, Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, and Daredevil appear in this intriguing world of 17th-century science and sorcery.

An intriguing read. This graphic novel is like a puzzle that you're slowly putting together. You meet characters and some of them are recognizable, like Daredevil, and some are a complete mystery until later, which makes figuring out who is on whose side more complex and at times aggravating. 

Lumiere (The Illumination Paradox #1)*
★★★ (3 out of 5)

Written by Jacqueline Garlick, After an unexplained flash shatters her world, seventeen-year-old Eyelet Elsworth sets out to find the Illuminator, her father’s prized invention. With it, she hopes to cure herself of her debilitating seizures before Professor Smrt—her father’s arch nemesis—discovers her secret and locks her away in an asylum. 

The world in this book is a strange one. There's no sun. People are hanged for being witches. Others are put in asylums for having seizures. There is deadly gas and zombie-like creatures. And it's all kind of steampunk-y. This book feels like a mix of too many weird, unconnected things. I also couldn't get myself to care about the main characters at all. 

Why Not Me?**
★★★ (5 out of 5)

Written by Mindy Kaling, Kaling shares her ongoing journey to find contentment and excitement in her adult life, whether it’s falling in love at work, seeking new friendships in lonely places, or believing that you have a place in Hollywood when you’re constantly reminded that no one looks like you.

And I thought I couldn't love Mindy Kaling more! I was wrong. Everything you love about Mindy is in this book -- it's charming, down-to-earth, self-deprecating, and of course so funny. I like how she doesn't take any of Hollywood's bullshit ideals seriously and does her own thing. Even though this book is about her life and there's a lot of humor, the biggest message I got out of it is that hard work and determination and believing in yourself will get you where you want to go. Everyone go read this now!

The Dining and Social Club for Time Travelers***
★★★ (3 out of 5)

Written by Elyse Kishimoto, Louisa Sparks is thrown into a world of chaos and adventure when she finds an unusual timepiece in the pocket of her grandfather’s old coat. With the press of a button, Louisa is suddenly transported through time. Soon after, she receives an invitation to join the strange fraternity of The Dining and Social Club for Time Travellers. 

To me, the cover is a little deceiving. I wasn't expecting this to be a middle grade book and honestly it took away from my enjoyment of it because I was expecting something different. The main character is a young girl, but at times she annoyed me and every character in the book has a big personality since it's a children's book. I also wasn't clear on what the time period was. The grandfather was a child during WWII, which would mean Louisa a modern kid and yet it felt like the 19th century. Still, I enjoyed Louisa's story and learning more about this strange club of time travelers. 

*via NetGalley.
**via Books for Blogging.
***I got it for free to review. All opinions are my own.

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Have a lovely day!
~Sara ♥

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