Reviews: Girl Online

Reviews

Title: Girl Online

Author: Zoe Sugg

Publisher: Penguin Books

Publication Date: August 2015

About The Book

GIRL ONLINE is the stunning debut romance novel by YouTube phenomenon Zoe Sugg, aka Zoella.
I had no idea GirlOnline would take off the way it has – I can’t believe I now have 5432 followers, thanks so much! – and the thought of opening up to you all about this is terrifying, but here goes…
Penny has a secret.
Under the alias GirlOnline, she blogs about school dramas, boys, her mad, whirlwind family – and the panic attacks she’s suffered from lately. When things go from bad to worse, her family whisks her away to New York, where she meets the gorgeous, guitar-strumming Noah. Suddenly Penny is falling in love – and capturing every moment of it on her blog.
But Noah has a secret too. One that threatens to ruin Penny’s cover – and her closest friendship – forever.

– Summary from Goodreads

My Thoughts

If you’ve been wondering what Girl Online is about, it is this-

Introduction to our main character Penny’s life, embarrassing things happen, Penny meets cute boy, they fall in love, they do happy stuff, the obvious twist and finally a happy ending.

Girl Online uses almost every YA Trope:

  • Insta ( Insta) love
  • generic brother
  • generic love interest
  • Parents absent at convenient times
  • Angst because apparently communication is a forgotten art
  • The gay best friend
  • The mean girl
  • The popular guy who actually likes the “plain” MC

Everything! It has everything!

Girl Online also touches upon anxiety and panic attacks. It was why I wanted to read it in the first place.

I had thought Girl Online would be about a girl who escapes reality via writing, copes with her anxiety through writing.

I was wrong. It’s about a girl who meets a boy and falls in love in a few days. For about 200 pages, they do lovey-dovey stuff like- go to a secret restaurant, spend Christmas together with their families…etcetera etcetera.

And I love cute stuff! But that is all that happens! Also I expected anxiety to play a more prominent role in the story.

I liked the dynamic between Penny and her best friend Elliot. I loved Elliot. I was more interested in his story than Penny’s.

I didn’t like Girl Online, not because it was cheesy. I love cheesy romances. I love tropes(when done properly). I don’t mind reading 300 pages of fluff and cuteness. My problem was with how it was written.

After the first couple of chapters, the writing got sort of uninspiring.

Penny’s blog posts are supposed to be heart touching and inspiring! It’s her story- her battle with anxiety. But I felt nothing!

The writing is what you expect from maybe a wattpad novel or an unedited draft. Not from a #1 NYT Bestseller!

I was very disappointed.

My Rating-

1 stars

Do I recommend it? 

No. Girl Online was not a very good book. Don’t make it a priority on your TBR.

Have you read Girl Online? What did you think of it? Is Girl Online on your TBR? Do you plan to read it soon? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

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Mini Reviews: Wonder

Reviews

Title: Wonder

Author: R.J. Palacio

Publisher: Knopf

Publication Date:  February 14th 2012

About The Book

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I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.
August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?
R. J. Palacio has written a spare, warm, uplifting story that will have readers laughing one minute and wiping away tears the next. With wonderfully realistic family interactions (flawed, but loving), lively school scenes, and short chapters, Wonder is accessible to readers of all levels.

Summary from Goodreads

My Thoughts

Wonder is the most adorable book I’ve read in 2017. I just wanted to hug the book and lay on my bed ( with that silly smile I had after reading it).

So Wonder is about Auggie ( who has facial deformity) who is starting 5th grade. He was homeschooled and had never studied in a mainstream school. Wonder follows Auggie’s journey through 5th grade.

What blew me away was how well all the characters’ POV chapters worked together. There are multiple POVs. So many POVs. It’s a recipe for disaster. It’s not supposed to work! But it does!


We have chapters from Auggie, his sister Olivia, his friends Summer and Jack, and even from Olivia’s boyfriend Justin! All in a 300 pages book! It’s astonishing. It never felt too stuffed or forced. I was never annoyed by the change in POV in each part. Each character had a unique voice. They all had beautiful character arcs ( especially Jack and Olivia. I love them so much).

We even have a Julian chapter. It was like an addition, after the story had ended ( I’ve seen it being listed on Goodreads as a novella. My edition had it in the book itself). To be honest, I wasn’t going to read it. I loved how the book had ended and I kind of despised Julian(he was on of Auggie’s main bullies).  But I’m so glad I didn’t. It was so wonderful! So don’t skip that chapter ( it’s not exactly a chapter. Sort of a part, like 100 pages long).

My Rating-

5 stars

Do I recommend it? 

Yes! Absolutely! Wonder has become one of my favourites! Please(please) add it your TBR! It’s so good! You will love it so much!

Quotes

“The things we do outlast our mortality. The things we do are like monuments that people build to honor heroes after they’ve died. They’re like the pyramids that the Egyptians built to honor the pharaohs. Only instead of being made of stone, they’re made out of the memories people have of you.”

“Courage. Kindness. Friendship. Character. These are the qualities that define us as human beings, and propel us, on occasion, to greatness.” 

“Sometimes I think my head is so big because it is so full of dreams”

Design K

Have you read Wonder? What did you think of it? Is Wonder on your TBR? Do you plan to read it soon? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

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Reviews: Everything Everything

Reviews

Title: Everything Everything

Author: Nicola Yoon

Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers

 

About The Book

Summary from Goodreads:

My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.

But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly.

Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am
certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster.
My Thoughts

If I’m being honest, I didn’t have high hopes for Everything Everything. I remember being excited when I first added it to my TBR 2 years ago. But now, the blurb just didn’t draw me in. So I think the main reason I didn’t like it is because it’s not really my kind of book.

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Mini Reviews: The Iron Butterfly

Reviews

Title: The Iron Butterfly

Author: Chanda Hahn

Publisher: Word Circus

About The Book

The Iron Butterfly

Summary from Goodreads:

Imprisoned, starved and left with no memories, Thalia awakens to find herself at the mercy of an evil cult known as the Septori. Their leader has chosen Thalia as the test subject for a torture device of untold power, designed to change and twist her into something that is neither human nor Denai.

Escaping, Thalia finds an unwilling warrior to protect her and an unlikely Denai to befriend her. After finding a home at the Citadel as a servant, Thalia’s worst nightmare comes to life and she begins to show signs of power. Scared and unable to control her gifts, she tries to hide her past to fit in among the Denai. But the Septori want their latest test subject back and will stop at nothing to retrieve her, dead or alive.

My Thoughts

“Down in this hell, silence was more than golden; it was the difference between life and death.”

Chanda Hahn is one of my favourite authors and I adore her ‘An Unfortunate Fairytale’ series. So I was really looking forward to reading The Iron Butterfly, which unfortunately didn’t win my heart.

The Iron Butterfly follows Thalia’s journey after she escapes torture and imprisonment by a mysterious group called the Septori.

I felt the first few chapters were the best part. The world Hahn creates is both new and captivating. I enjoyed Thalia’s journey to the the Citadel, along with Joss and his uncle.

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Reviews: Flipped( The Cutest Story Ever)

Rocki'n

Author: Wendelin Van Draanen

Published :October 1st 2001

Publisher: Knopf

 

Sypnosis

Flipped

Flipped is a romance told in two voices. The first time Juli Baker saw Bryce Loski, she flipped. The first time Bryce saw Juli, he ran. That’s pretty much the pattern for these two neighbors until the eighth grade, when, just as Juli is realizing Bryce isn’t as wonderful as she thought, Bryce is starting to see that Juli is pretty amazing. How these two teens manage to see beyond the surface of things and come together makes for a comic and poignant romance. 

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4 star

My Rating: 4/5

Note: I read this way back in January.

“Some of us get dipped in flat, some in satin, some in gloss….” He turned to me. “But every once in a while, you find someone who’s iridescent, and when you do, nothing will ever compare.”

Aww…. Flipped is the cutest story I’ve read so far. This was my first read for 2016 and it was so good! It was a slightly different read for me a I mostly read YA, where the characters are mostly 15- 16 years and here the main characters were 8th graders.

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Reviews: The Distance Between Us By Kasie West

Rocki'n

About The Author

A stay-at-home mom of four children, three of them girls, ranging in age from four to 12, Kasie West hears lots of melodramatic versions of large-than-life events. She graduated with a BA in liberal studies, with a strong focus on linguistics and psychology, from Fresno State University. She lives in Fresno, CA.

 

Sypnosis

The Distance Between UsSeventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.
So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she’s beginning to enjoy his company.
She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about.

Goodreads-Icon

4 star

My Rating: 4.5 stars

I re-read this a few days ago, so I thought why not put a review up for it?

The Distance Between Us was a surprising read. I went into this not expecting much. Contemporary romances usually fail to impress me. But I fell in love with this one!

The Distance between Us is cute, funny, and sarcastic. Yes, sarcastic. I’m pretty sure this book is a mandatory read for those courses offering a PhD. in sarcasm.

So what did I love most in this book? Caymen. I loved her. She is witty, funny and normal.

“How come the dog isn’t named?” He reads aloud the title on the box. “‘Peggy and dog.’”
“Because people tend to want to name animals after their beloved pets.”
“Really?”
“No. I have no idea. I can give you the number of Peggy’s creator if you want to ask.”
“You have the phone number of this doll’s creator?”
“No.” I punch the price into the register and push Total.”

“I’d rather not see their eyes. Eyes can say so much. Theirs say, ‘I want to steal your soul so don’t turn your back on us.”

“Note to self: Caymen is very good at sarcasm.”
“If you’re recording notes for an official record, I’d like the word ‘very’ stricken and replaced with ‘exceptionally.”

Come on! How can you not love her?

I really loved how the relationship between Xander and Caymen developed. It was sweet and fun and aww… and *sigh*

I also liked how they weren’t exchanging ‘I love you’s ‘ within the first few chapters( you’d be surprised how often that happens).

And the banter between them is sooo cute!

“So Caymen…”
“So, Xander…”
“Like the islands.”
“What?”
“Your name. Caymen. Like the Cayman Islands. Is that your mom’s favourite place to visit or something?”
“No, it’s her third favourite place. I have an older brother named Paris and an older sister named Sydney.”
“Wow.” He opens the bag, takes out a muffin, and hands it to me. The top glistens with sprinkled sugar. “Really?”
I gently unwrap it. “No.”

“Caymen?”
“Yes?”
“You look terrified. Does this scare you?”
“More than anything.”
“Why?”
“Because I didn’t bring my mints.”

This is my first Kasie West novel, and I’m really looking forward to reading more books by her. I liked her writing and the characters she created.

The Distance Between Us made me smile, made me laugh and most important of all, it made me really happy.

Reviews: Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Rocki'n

About The AuthorCynthia Hand is the New York Times bestselling author of the Unearthly series with HarperTeen: UNEARTHLY, HALLOWED, RADIANT (an enovella) and BOUNDLESS. Currently she lives in southern California with her husband and two small children. She teaches courses in creative writing at Pepperdine University.

Sypnosis


Unearthly (Unearthly, #1)In the beginning, there’s a boy standing in the trees…Clara Gardner has recently learned that she’s part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do. Figuring out what that is, though, isn’t easy. Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place and out of place at the same time. Because there’s another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara’s less angelic side. As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she’d have to make between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny? Unearthly is a moving tale of love and fate, and the struggle between following the rules and following your heart.

Goodreads-Icon

3 star

My Rating: 3 stars

Unearthly was a pleasant and nice read. Unfortunately that’s all I can say. I went into this after reading rave reviews of amazing this book is. So I had really high expectations. Now, I wonder if I read the same book. Unearthly wasn’t anything spectacular. But there aren’t many faults with it either. I just wasn’t blown away.

Let me begin with things I liked:

  • I loved Clara. I related with her. The author captured the voice of a sixteen year old perfectly.
  • Clara and her mom had a good relationship. Her mom cared about her. She had a prominent role in Clare’s life. (Parents don’t seem to play much of a role in most YA novels).
  • The writing was really good. I liked Hand’s writing style. It was kind of …………. soothing.( weird, I know)

But for the most part, Unearthly was bland. Nothing really goes on. By the time something did happen, I had lost interest. The first half was spent by Clara mooning over a boy she is supposed to be protecting.

The plot was quite unique. But I wasn’t really dying to know what happens. Also, I didn’t feel 400 pages was necessary to arrive at that ending. The story had this great build up for an amazing ending. But the ending, I was left like….Really? That’s it? It was like someone had deflated a balloon.

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I waited and waited for this amazing thing to happen, but it didn’t.

Unearthly had so many things I usually fall in love with…but I guess this was not my cup of tea.