Review: Lock & Key by Sarah Dessen

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Goodreads Summary:

Ruby, where is your mother?

Ruby knows that the game is up. For the past few months, she’s been on her own in the yellow house, managing somehow, knowing that her mother will probably never return.

That’s how she comes to live with Cora, the sister she hasn’t seen in ten years, and Cora’s husband Jamie, whose down-to-earth demeanor makes it hard for Ruby to believe he founded the most popular networking Web site around. A luxurious house, fancy private school, a new wardrobe, the promise of college and a future; it’s a dream come true. So why is Ruby such a reluctant Cinderella, wary and defensive? And why is Nate, the genial boy next door with some secrets of his own, unable to accept the help that Ruby is just learning to give?

Best-selling author Sarah Dessen explores the heart of a gutsy, complex girl dealing with unforeseen circumstances and learning to trust again.

My Review

This was my first Sarah Dessen book! My friend lent me it and mentioned that it was a quick read! She was definitely right! The story was sweet and emotional all the way through. It touched on all the toughest life subjects you can think of.

Lock & Key follows the point of view of Ruby, a teenage girl who was recently abandoned by her lowlife mom. She thinks she can handle things on her own but soon finds herself in the custody of her older sister whom she believed to have walked out on her and her mom years ago. Now her life has taken on a mind all its own, as she learns to adjust to a completely new world. Fortunately, she finds an unlikely friendship (or more than friendship) in the boy next door. However, she is determined to keep the secrets of her past from him, but she begins to wonder if he’s keeping secrets of his own.

This book was heart wrenching throughout. I felt for Ruby’s situation. She was so determined to be independent and keep herself boxed up, but life just finds a way sometimes to make you learn the most unexpected things about yourself. I loved all the characters too! Each one had their curves and edges all their own. I think Dessen did an excellent job of showing the ways in which you can be a product of your environment, which I am a sound believer of! I admit, I was expecting this book to be more centered around the romance, but that really wasn’t the case. It was more focused on self-discovery, and the ability to accept that you don’t have to be alone, and you can always ask for help.

If you are looking for an emotionally touching read, with a dash of romance, then I would most definitely recommend you read Lock & Key!

Buy it on Amazon!

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Review: Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

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Goodreads Summary:

With this stunning debut novel, New York Times bestselling author Lauren Oliver emerged as one of today’s foremost authors of young adult fiction. Like Jay Asher’s Thirteen Reasons Why and Gayle Forman’s If I Stay, Before I Fall raises thought-provoking questions about love, death, and how one person’s life can affect so many others.

For popular high school senior Samantha Kingston, February 12—”Cupid Day”—should be one big party, a day of valentines and roses and the privileges that come with being at the top of the social pyramid. And it is…until she dies in a terrible accident that night.

However, she still wakes up the next morning. In fact, Sam lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she ever imagined.


My Review

I’ll be honest, I had never heard of this book until I saw the preview for the movie. The concept definitely intrigued me. I decided to listen to it on audiobook, and wow, just wow. This story was unexpectedly heart wrenching and real, so so real.

The story centers around the life and death of Samantha Kingston who has climbed her way to the top of the popularity tower and happens to be friends with the top dogs. She’s essentially a bitch and so are her friends. That becomes apparent immediately, however, when she wakes up in the morning after experiencing her death to find that the day she lived yesterday is on repeat, she soon discovers she is stuck in a loop unless she can do something to change her path and the situation around her.

It was so incredibly interesting to see Oliver create the same day in multiple different unique ways. I kept thinking throughout, how is she going to change it this time, how is she going to give this story a happy ending? Well folks, don’t expect a happy ending, but do expect an ending that makes sense and will certainly give you chills. Though I definitely disliked Sam’s character in the beginning, I began to appreciate her and her character evolution as her repeated days continued. She grew so much and developed into a wonderful female lead. And though I so wish the story had ended differently, I understand why it concluded the way it did. And even though it kills me inside, I am content in a certain way with the way things played out.

The message in Before I Fall is absolutely beautiful and makes you appreciate life and humanity. It teaches you to take in every small wonderful detail of your existence, because even the most insignificant aspects of life have a role to play, a role that could be so much more impactful then you ever realized.

I would definitely recommend you read Before I Fall if only to feel all the emotion that this story has to bring and appreciate it’s meaning. I can only hope that the movie brings that emotion to life just as well as the book.

Buy it on Amazon.

Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3) by Sarah J. Maas

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Goodreads Summary:

A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.


 

FOREWARNING: PREPARE FOR LOTS OF RANTS AND READ NO FURTHER IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THE FIRST TWO BOOKS!!!!


 

My Review

Oh. My. Goodness. I don’t even know where to begin with this review!!! My heart and my mind are completely WRECKED! WRECKED I SAY!!! This book took me on the most incredible and heart wrenching ride! I am so blown away by how amazing it was!! It literally left me shook! I haven’t felt this way about a series/book in too long!!

Ok ok let me get started now. Or try to…

Oh wait, before I really begin, let me also add that my experience with this book was all the more involved and real because I made sure I reread the first two books before this one. So everything was crystal clear this time, and made this third book all the more enthralling!

Ok ok, trying again. (***Clears metaphorical throat***)

Alright! We all know after reading book two that Rhysand is EVERYTHING. And Tamlin is a big giant pile of poo poo. And wasn’t that just the most insane turn around you ever did read in a book? (***bows to Sarah J Maas***) Check out my review for A Court of Mist and Fury to see more of what I’m talking about!  However, my perspective on Tamlin and that entire destructive love triangle, Love battle? Love fiasco?  completely became altered after reading ACOWR. Of course I still have some animosity toward him, but his character development allows the reader to open their eyes more in regards to the reality of his situation.

After book two ended, the reader was left with watching Feyre literally walk into the arms of the enemy, and though it was heart breaking, she was on a mission to destroy Tamlin and his hold on his kingdom, and boy does she do that and then some!! As if we didn’t already know Feyre was an eternal badass, she takes things up a notch now that she is a full blown High Lady! The measures she takes to ensure the safety of her family are astronomical, she goes to any lengths, even if it means facing her true nightmares in order to see those she loves succeed. And of course Rhysand is there for her through it all being all dashing and wonderful as always! Their romance was as sweet and fierce as ever, making me fall even more in love with their relationship.

Moving on. The character development in this book was INSANE!! Something new about every main character is revealed that adds further depth each time I turned the page.  Maas dangles Cassian and Nesta’s tumultuous relationship in front you the entire time, and its so killer yet so fantastic! Also, I didn’t think I could enjoy Mor, Amren, and Azriel even more, but I was oh so wrong! It’s so rare when an author can create characters who are so wholly different and unique that they cause you to love each one individually for their own ways. I can’t wait to see more from these side characters in future books, because it’s sure to be mind blowing!

And lastly, so much happened in this book, it was easily the most fast paced of the three thus far. The action and suspense was nonstop, I could not put it down, and when I had to for stupid things like work and studying for the GRE, I was super sad to see it go. By the time I finished this book, I was a complete emotional wreck, but I was also bursting with so much love and hope for the story. From what I understand, I believe this is a mini conclusion for Feyre and Rhys’s story. The next three books in the series  will focus more on the other characters, which I’m ecstatic to delve into, but damn I hope Maas includes those two throughout! Either way, the ending of ACOWR was phenomenal, I couldn’t have asked for a better book! I don’t think there’s one thing I would change! And Maas certainly dropped multiple easter eggs about certain events to come!

I would most definitely, 100% recommend you read this book, it is so worth the experience! Go buy it right now!! Right here!And if you did read it already, please comment, I would love to discuss! Unfortunately, I’ve been trying to convince a lot of my book friends to read this so I haven’t been able to really talk about it with anyone yet!