Rainy Days

28 February 2015

"Use the sleeves of my sweater. Lets have an adventure" -Sweater Weather 

 "Head in the clouds buy my gravity is centered"-Sweater Weather

I love rainy days and pretty much any excuse to wear cozy sweaters and warm scarves. There's something nostalgic about rain and I just love it. I love staying home and drinking hot cocoa or a toasty warm mug of tea. It's the perfect time to just relax and chill and not worry about things. You have time to think and just breath a little. Or least that's how I try to look at it. After a crazy busy week a day filled with Netflix, books, writing, and tea sounds just perfect.

Sweater: Old Navy: one, two  (I got it a year ago so they no longer have it in stock but here are a few similar ones)
Scarf: (got this two years ago as a gift) Similar: Icing, Forever 21
Leggings: Target
Boots: Similar Target

Dear Clarke Griffin,

27 February 2015

      I take so many things in my life for granted. 

       The air I breath, the water I drink, the fact I never have to worry about where my next meal is coming from. You grew up on the Ark a ruthless place filled with stale air and rough people. You didn't get to experience Earth until you were sent here to pretty much die. And since then that's exactly what you've been trying to avoid. You are brave and kind and like Lexa said, a leader to fight for. You helped keep your people alive, even if that meant getting put in harms way, or giving up bits and pieces leaving you a little bloody and a little broken. I'm lucky. I got to have a childhood. I got a chance to be a kid and run around, be crazy, play pretend, not have a care in the world. I might have grown up too fast, but I never had the weight of countless lives on my shoulders.
        You know there's a part in a letter where you ask the other person how life is, how they are holding up. I already know the answer to both. You are afraid, anxious, worried about the war. Maybe even thinking about what to do about Lexa. Because underneath it all you're still a teenager, you're still allowed to think about things that may seem small at a time when spears and stuff are being shot at you. Everyone in your life is about to go into war, so i'm guessing they are also scared, and anxious. I can't help but think of what Bellamy said while back, "Who we are, and who we need to be to survive are very different things". There was a lot of sacrifice, particularly on your part to get to this point, to be able to win this war. I want to say something really cliche like it'll get better, you'll be stronger for it. And while they may be true I feel like you deserve more than an "it's okay" after what you've been through.
        You're one years older than me yet you are so much wiser and stronger than I could ever hope to be. You never asked to be a leader, but perhaps that's what makes you such a good one. You said recently that life should be about more than surviving. Amazing how things like war can put life into perspective. How frail and ephemeral it all is. You've been living in a perpetual state of war, fighting the grounders, fighting to live, and now a new war is here. I hope you find something that makes you happy because at the end of all the craziness, the battles, and the the gory moments of life, you want happiness. So if you find it I say hold on to it. 
        I wrote this this in math class. I mean who needs Calculus anyways? You would be in school right now. Maybe you'd be in college, trying to become a doctor like your mom. Instead you are making decisions that make you out to be ruthless while trying to save your people. I think you are bad-ass. Strange how in this world we still can't quite stomach equality between men and women, yet in yours there is equality and the chance for strong bad-ass women to be leaders. I guess what i'm trying to say is that you are someone we can look up to, respect. 
       The world today is crazy. The world you live in is even more so. Yet the battles seem to be similar sometimes. We all fight for love, hope we can find a friend we can rely on 24/7. We look for the happy moments in life. We try to do more than survive, we try to find reasons to live for and then proceed to try and be alive. It's nice to be able to relate to you. It's nice to see someone be so strong and move forward. So keep being a bad-ass.


Top Ten Fictional Heroines

23 February 2015

I'm super excited about this week's Top Ten Tuesday. Right now we need role models of strong women in our society that seems pretty set on being sexist. As a feminist I think it's important to have women be in strong roles that are available to everyone. I think it's awesome to read a book with a bad-ass female character. or see a show where women are portrayed as strong and capable. So here's my list of bad-ass, amazing, strong heroines!

1. Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series. I love Hermione, she's amazing, strong, and capable. I love to be her best friend. The reason I picked her as my number one is because she's smart and she's the reason the Harry Potter and Ron survive any of the numerous problems they encounter. Hermione is strong. When Ron left, she stuck with Harry, She might not be the type of girl to get into fights or make a scene,instead she's strong and awesome in a quieter way, but none the less pretty bad-ass. I mean one of my favorite scenes is when she punches Draco Malfoy.

2. Clarke Griffin from The 100. I read the book and loved her. I watch the show and she's even MORE amazing. If you aren't watching this show, you are doing a disservice to yourself. Anyways... Clarke is honestly amazing. She's only two years older than me and is thrust into a new world into a war she never wanted. She has to navigate and often time sacrifice bits and pieces of her to win the war. I honestly respect her so much. She's also kind, and sweet, and always willing to do right by the people she loves. 
3. Regina from Once Upon a Time. She's one of my favorite characters and she's also one of the most bad-ass on the show. She kind of is this force of nature. Sometimes she could be evil and sometimes she was just beautiful and strong. No matter what life has thrown her way she has grown and become a better person while becoming a bastion of strength for a lot for a lot of the characters on the show. 
4. Kasta from Graceling. All her life she has been misjudged and ostracized and treated terribly. Yet she over comes everything to see the good in herself and even other people. She's also a great fighter, a master with any weapon, and overall bad-ass. 
5. Tris Prior from Divergent. Because I mean come on she's just fucking amazing. Like she's bad-ass, awesome and just like Clarke she's willing to do what it takes to win the war and protect her loved ones. She's overcome so much it's hard to not see her as this pillar of awesomeness and strength.
6. Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She's just awesome. I wish I could be as bad ass as her!
7. Mary from Reign. I mean being a queen is hard work. I love her so much. I love how she's putting others first and how now she's done being a ploy and a chess piece. In a time that is much harsher to women than men, I love how Mary always is independent, regal, and strong
8. Hazel Grace Lancaster from The Fault in Our Stars. Strength is more than just a physical thing, it's also a mental and emotional thing. Hazel might not be physically strong and be able to take down anyone, be she is filled with strength and capability beyond what normal people have. She faces death and she's okay with that. There's something to be said about her strength in the face of everything she's gone through.
9. Tally Youngblood from The Uglies Series.This girl has bounced back from everything. She's not an awesome person, she's a revolutionary. I love her because she's flawed yet always willing to fix the messes she makes for herself. She's exceptionally smart and strong in both the mental way and the physical way. 
10. Lilo from Lilo and Stitch. This is probably my favorite Disney movie. I will admit it has made me cry, it still makes me cry, I mean how can you not be upset when Stitch takes the story book stands in the middle of the woods saying "I'm lost" so that his family will find him? Anyways... I love Lilo she's weird and quirky but oh so amazing. She's different and doesn't have very many friends but she doesn't let that stop her from doing things that make her happy. I honestly love her so much.

Don't Forget to enter my giveaway! Happy Tuesday


Guest Post: Top Five Book To Movie Adpatations

20 February 2015

Alrighty! Happy Friday guys! We survived the week! I think we all deserve a little pat on the back for that! So today I thought I would host a guest post! Today I Have Sami Lien, who is super awesome and cool! Go check Out her website and follow her on social media! Enjoy :)

Hi everyone! I’m so glad to be here today! Big thanks to Giselle for hosting me today. I’ve had the chance to work with her over the years on virtual blog tours, and she always been so much fun to work with on promoting authors. I was so excited when she asked me to do a guest post here at Perks of Being a Reader! First of all - let me tell you a little about me! My name is Sami Lien, and I own Roger Charlie, a publicity and management firm that specializes in services for authors, musicians and small businesses. I just love working with creative professionals to help make their brand successful, and love sharing their stories across through various media platforms and events! Books, music, movies and entertainment in general are a huge passion of mine, so I thought today, I’d write about my Top 5 Favorite YA Book-to-Movie Adaptations, and hope you’ll chime in with comments on with your favorites, too! :)

 Warm Bodies (Book: 2012; Movie: 2013)
I actually received a copy of the book at Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance Trade Show before it was even released, but didn’t realize it until after I saw (and loved) the movie. I think the book translates over nicely into film, and just love the perspective and play on the culture of (how I took it, anyway) the negative effects of technology today. I wasn’t sure about another zombie story, but this one is so clever and unique, I recommend it to everyone! Plus, for music lovers like me, you’ll adore the soundtrack. Totally killer!

 Freaky Friday (Book: 1972; Movie: 1976)
I’m sticking with the 1976 version here, over the updated version with Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis, mostly because the latter movie is really based off of the first movie - not the book. I think the book shines in the inner monologue inside Annabel’s head, but the movie does a better job at actually bringing the characters to life. I also think the film did a really nice job developing the mom’s character, too, when she was more of a supporting role in the book.

 A Little Princess (Book: 1905; Movie: 1939,1995)
This film did a beautiful job of illustrating Sara’s imagination and bringing the story to life. I’m a sucker for a strong female lead - especially when they’re younger, so I think that’s a big part of the reason why this one resonates so strongly with me. I grew up on the Shirley Temple version, and while it’s somewhat different than the newer adaptation - I am a big fan of both.

 I Know What You Did Last Summer (Book: 1973; Movie: 1997)
I actually had no idea this was a book, so I had to go back and read it afterward. Despite switching up the regular order of things, I still loved both - but found the movie much more thrilling. I’m sure you’re thinking, ‘What a strange choice to have on this list,” but I was in high school when this came out in the theatres, so it’s one that will always stick with me as a favorite, and is probably a huge reason as to why I love Pretty Little Liars so much now. :) Plus… Ryan Phillippe? YES PLEASE. 

Nick and Norah and the Infinite Playlist (Book: 2007; Movie: 2008)
There’s actually very little of the book in the movie, but the story is consistent. The movie ending actually annoyed me - it seemed too easy, but it’s just a true testament of how much I enjoy a story that develops out of a completely random circumstance that creates a night full of adventure. I also love Kat Dennings and Ari Graynor, and of course, the fact that music almost plays another character in the film, as well.

Others that I haven’t yet seen, but are on my list:
The Lovely Bones
 I Am Number Four
 The Book Thief
The Fault in our Stars - I have to be in the right mood to be ready to cry!

 What are some of yours? I’d love more recommendations! Feel free to leave a comment below, or connect with me directly!

Motivational Monday #3

16 February 2015

Happy President's Day! I've recently been thinking of how negative I am on a day to day basis. I dread every morning because I know what the day will bring, I know i'm going to be busy, because chances are the things I want to do aren't going to happen. So needless to say I'm just s stressed out girl, dreading each day, counting the days down till Saturday. So that brings me to this quote...

If you saw the golden globes, then you probably heard Gina Rodriguez's speech and how she told the story about how her dad told her this every day. My sister has thus gotten into the habit of sending me these words in the morning. So I thought why not send this to you guys, why not have you guys start of this week with this.

I know it's hard to keep looking on the bright side. I know it's hard to keep having faith when nothing is going your way. But I want you to know that as hard as life is, and as tough as things get, you can do whatever it is you want. You have the power to make today a good day. So why not make it a good day. Why not try to accomplish things you want, because you can. So put yourself in that mentality. The mentality that gives you strength. The set of mind that gives you the faith to trust yourself and do the things you want, the things you need, and the things that will get you were you want to go.

Today is a good day, No matter what happens, or what the day brings, you should always start your day happy and ready and be optimistic. You can and you will. As cliche, as tired as this is, if you believe you can, you will be able to accomplish what you want. So stop dreading each day, stop thinking that you can't do what it is you dream of  doing it. Silence all those annoying, way too loud, voices telling you can't do it, because guess what? Today is your day. Today is a good day. You can and you will

Valentine's Day Outfit and Giveaway

14 February 2015

Dress Forever 21 Similar (1.) (2.) (3.)

Cardigan(This is the closest thing I found) Similar

Happy Valentines day!!! I hope today is great, whether you are celebrating today or not. Whether you are out with your gf or bf or having a galentine. As for me, i'll be at home, doing homework and watching movies and catching up with t.v shows. So because I love you guys I have a new giveaway for ya'll! I'm giving away a Journal and an eos lip balm.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

What We Should Celebrate on Valentines Day

13 February 2015

So tomorrow is Valentines Day, or as the single people call it, Forever Alone Day. Seeing as it is tomorrow I thought I would do a post about it.

While I am part of the group who thinks this holiday is a little over rated fist because of the fact that you should be able to show you care about someone any day of the year, not just Valentines Day. That being said, i'm not against all the chocolates, flowers, teddy bears etc.  As important as this holiday might be it's important to remember that this isn't an excuse to never show affection, to never get someone flowers, to never so much as be romantic.

Love is amazing thing to find, so treasure it. Treasure it every day not just one day. Love can be found in different places not just a girlfriend or boyfriend. It can be found between good friends. It can be found in families, I can even be found in pets. I know that tomorrow is basically just for significant others, I feel like we should also celebrate these types of relationships.

I'm almost happy that I haven't found love yet. I have great friends, a supportive family, and really awesome dog (who I swear has ADHD for dogs. she has the attention span if a squirrel on coffee). But I've never been in love like in the movies or in the books. I know that in this day and age, love and boyfriends and feeling like cupids arrow will never hit it's target is all anyone really thinks of. Being single, being "forever alone" is not the worse thing in the world.

So instead of being glum and gloomy tomorrow, try to celebrate the other loves in your life. Being single is a way to focus on you, on your work, on your life and goals. So tomorrow might remind you that you are alone, but that's not always a bad thing. And love will come your way eventually, you just have to look for it.  And if you are in a relationship, remember that, love needs to be celebrated, cherished every day not just some commercial holiday pretty much used to gain money for capitalism now.

So have fun tomorrow. But some coffee, buy some chocolate, scarf down said chocolate, watch a movie.

Happy Valentines Day

Top Ten Tuesdsay

09 February 2015

As a YA addict, I love a good romance to fangirl over. If done right, It will make the book that much better for me. If done terribly, i'll probably dismiss the novel as cheesy. So without further ado here are my top five things I hate when it comes to romance and five things I like. 

My Dislikes
  1. Insta-Love. This is my all time, I can't even deal, this is too terrible, why is this even happening pet peeve. I hate it. Insta-love is so boring, so unrealistic. It honestly sucks. I like feeling invested in a romance. I want to ship it, I want to be excited for the characters when they go on a first date. But that's not going to happen if they met and .5 seconds later they are madly in love. Now, Insta-attraction is okay. When two characters meet, think the other is cute. Talk, maybe even go out. Insta-Love is when they meet and they're heat skips beats, and they feel like the met the one after exchanging one sentence.It just happens too fast making the romance underdeveloped and pretty much just a story point, instead of being a highlight or even focal point.
  2. Underdeveloped Romance. This always makes me sad, because i'll be all invested, fangirling over a couple and the author will put the relationship on the back burner and they never move forward. They get stuck in this one stage until the author is ready to pick up the romance again. I get why sometimes it happens. Especially when the plot is really cray, but it's still frustrating.
  3. When Its too cheesy. There's a fine line between being cute and being cheesy. I guess it can be pretty hard to discern because one of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to romance when everything feels like it's overdone.  It's okay if you travel to cheesy land every once in a while, but please don't make a permanent residence. 
  4. Bad Communication. This makes for such a frustrating read. Romeo and Juliet is a perfect example. If they were less hasty and were able to communicate better then maybe they wouldn't have died. Or Insurgent. I mean could Tris and Tobias have worse communication skills. Literally one of the most frustrating books. All I wanted was for them to be happy, but no, they were hell bent on not talking to each other. 
  5. Overdependent Characters. I always dislike when strong characters, typically girls, fall in love and suddenly they become all dependent and damsel in distress-y. Or when characters get put into relationships because they feel like they can't have too strong of a character. (Glee is a perfect example. Whenever one of the girls is doing well, they always need to have a man. No matter how strong, how independent they always get shoved with a guy.It's annoying). 
My Favorite Aspects
  1. Hate at first sight. Not really. I love when characters at first don't really like each other, but then see the good in each other and fall in love. This is part of why I LOVE Mara Dyer and Noah Shaw. It just adds dimension to the relationship.
  2. Love Triangles. I have a love hate relationship with this, but honestly it adds so much to the book as well as suspense and crazy shipping and yeah...
  3. Best Friends to Boyfriend/Girlfriend.  I think this is so cute. If done well, this can be super cute and just amazing. I love how this happens in The Body Finder. It so cute, I can't even deal.
  4. When it's NOT the focal point. As much as I love romance, I love when it's not the entire plot. I like when it's a part of the plot but not the most important thing. 
  5. Funny + Love. I love when characters are put into funny situations, or they're just funny people. It makes the romance cuter and much more shipworthy. 

Book Talk: Liar by Justine Larbalestier

08 February 2015

Release Date: September 29,2009
Book: Liar
Author: Justine Larbalestier
Number of Pages: 376
Source: Library :)
The Basics: Micah will freely admit that she’s a compulsive liar, but that may be the one honest thing she’ll ever tell you. Over the years she’s duped her classmates, her teachers, and even her parents, and she’s always managed to stay one step ahead of her lies. That is, until her boyfriend dies under brutal circumstances and her dishonesty begins to catch up with her. But is it possible to tell the truth when lying comes as naturally as breathing? Taking readers deep into the psyche of a young woman who will say just about anything to convince them—and herself—that she’s finally come clean, Liar is a bone-chilling thriller that will have readers see-sawing between truths and lies right up to the end. Honestly.

Add it on Goodreads

My Musings:

I actually was recommended this book and one day when I was strolling down the aisles at the library I picked it up. My friend was fangirling over the book after she finished it, I was a little weary of the hype she was building around it, but honestly this is such a fangirl worthy book!

I loved the writing style. I loved being reading about Micah and her story. The descriptions were pretty good, the author did an amazing job at making everything come alive. From the characters to the lies.

The plot is amazing, There are turns and spins and the whole time you are just wondering if she's telling the truth. I love reading unreliable narrators, they make things ten times more interesting. Micah in one of the most unreliable narrators ever, which just adds to everything. The story line is well constructed and everything seems to make sense even after you've been blindsided. Like when she tells you why she's a impulsive liar. Or when she gives you the golden little truth nuggets after lying to you for a full chapter. I love not knowing what the real truth was, if Micah was being honest or just weaving an elaborate tale. But once you get to the end, and everything is revealed all her lies make sense. Because for a secret that big, you need an army of lies to protect it. Or is that a lie too?

The character's are rich and well developed. I love Micah's sarcasm and the way she thinks. I literally laughed out loud a lot while reading it. But there were also a lot of worry eyebrow faces and gasps and shocking things that made me both want to give her a hug and punch her. Though i'm pretty sure if we got in a fight I would lose. She loves running, biology, and her boyfriend Zach. I hate running so I respect her running skills, Bio is okay, Zach...well.. Micah finds herself being blamed for Zach's death and people at her school start saying some vile things about her. Even though technically she was never his actual girlfriend. Which kinda made me want to punch Zach because that's such an asshole thing to do. Anyways, this book was amazing! Character development was on point.

Romance wise there isn't really anything to talk about. But as I said before not the biggest fan of Zach but I don't hate the guy. I love Micah and I just want her to be happy. She's been through a lot, had to cover a lot of that up, and still pretend everything was fine even after she discovers/tells us the truth.

This is a MUST READ. It's amazing and I definitely believe that this is a book that everyone should give a shot. Murder, deception, suspense, this all makes this book even crazier and even better.

Coffee for this Book: Americano. You're gonna wanna stay up and finish this book. I promise you a nice big cup of Americano will help you stay up and see the truth and maybe even the crack of dawn.

My Rating:

Staying Organized and Creating a Blogging Schedule

06 February 2015

Perks of Being a Reader: Staying Organized

 Trying to stay on top of things can prove to be one of the harder things in life. Especially when life is hell bent on being cray and not really giving you a chance to breath. Staying organized is definitely a challenge for me, being a student and blogger. But the thing is the busier you are the more important being organized is. In order to keep up with school and make sure posts go up, schedules and calenders are KEY! I know a lot of these things aren't really new ideas but this is just what I do.
Perks of Being a Reader: Staying Organized

  1.  Priorities! It's important to have an idea of what comes first. Like for me school comes first, which often means laboring over homework before even thinking of trying to get a post done. It's important to know what your priorities are before anything else because that way you can build around it. 
  2. Have goals. I'm trying to make it a goal to have 4 posts up a week. Every Sunday and Friday while alternating some memes through out the week. That's my goal. While it's important to have these goals, it's also important to know you can't always reach them. Don't beat yourself up if it's 1 in the morning and you are way to tired to blog and you have school/work the next day. These things happen...
  3. Be strict but go easy on yourself. Try to stick to a rhythm or schedule but if it's not possible that day. Don't fret. 
  4. Creating a Blogging Schedule will save your life. Okay the best way to do this is to do it monthly. That way you have an idea of what and when things need to go up. Its always best to have a consistent blogging days (mine are Sunday and Friday). Try to pick days that are easy for you to work with. (Shout out to my friend who helped me make my new blogging schedule)
  5. Perks of Being a Reader : Staying Organized
    • Pick things you'd like to write about that month. Posts ideas are important to have beforehand to avoid the flustered blogging, bad posts, and the "fuck it i'm not going to do it" experiences. Not everyone works this way I know, but it's useful for me.  
    • Now you might have a Calender handy and you could use that, or you can make your own. Like I did :) 
    • So once you have your days set, try to organize your posts to fit within those days. Like For me, Sundays are Book Talks, Fridays are whatever days. It's nice to have some venting/tutorial/tips posts. 
    • Don't be too overzealous and try to bite off more than you can chew. It's important to be be consistent and so it's important to know what you can handle. I know that two solid days are in the realm of possibility for me. I know it's possible to do some memes during the week 
    • Now if you have pictures to take for posts, or pictures to edit. It's a good idea to work that into your schedule too. Because that can take a while, trust me. 
    • Do your best to stick with the schedule
  6. Have a planner. I know it gets tedious but trust me it's helpful! This way you have an idea everyday how busy you are and what you need to get done. I usually write down homework for the day, try to put the approximate time I'll spend on it and schedule time for my blog if there;s a post that day. If not I try to make sure I'm active every day on my social media because I love you guys :)
  7. Pick days that you can work ahead. For me I use the weekends as time to work, time to get things done before Monday comes and homework comes piling on. So I'll try to carve some time out for blogging, taking pictures, editing them etc. (end of thinking capacity lol). By working ahead you are able to give yourself an edge for the week/month. 
  8. CARVE OUT TIME FOR YOU. If you are stressed, tired, absolutely done with everything,you are NOT going to function correctly. You are NOT going to be organized and probably going to fall behind. It's so important to take care of yourself and get sleep, watch some T.V. Read a book. Whatever is relaxing and fun for you. That way you can stay on task, stay organized and stay on top of things.
Hope I was helpful! Those are my 6 tips. Comment below if you have any strategies or tricks!

Perks of Being a Reader : Staying Organized

Happy Friday!! DFTBA

Waiting on Wednesday #3

03 February 2015

Release Date: February 10, 2015 (I swear I feel like the only one who still writes 2014)
Book: Red Queen
Author: Victoria Aveyard

The Basics:The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers. To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change. Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control. But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win? 

Add it on Goodreads

Why do I want to read it?

Motivational Monday

02 February 2015

Falling is scary. Falling involves being brave enough that either a) you can fly or b) someone will be there to catch you or c)you can put yourself together. Trying is scary. Living in general is pretty fucking scary. There are so many moments where trying, falling, going for anything can lead to utmost disaster, Or at least it seems like it at the moment. Like asking that person out that you've had a crush on. Or raising your hand in class. It can be something big like starting a business or chasing a dream. 

As humans we all want to survive. As people we want to live. I love this quote because sometimes we forget that something just because things are hard, things are scary doesn't mean you wont succeed. Yeah falling is scary. Getting hurt is scary. But at least we can say we tried. We learn. We live. Besides since when does hard equate to failure, you never know, you might find your wings where ya least expect them. 

I'm always scared of failure. Thats my thing. My flaw. I always think about what can go wrong and then I avoid the thing that can cause things to be shaken up. I need to stop. I need to just go for what I want. Say what I want to say. Essentially be Brave in that way that Sara Barielles sings. So here's my advice for you and for me. Let's see if we can do this together. Let's go for things. Because finally flying would be worth all the scrapes and bruises. Because flying would be pretty damn amazing. So what do ya say? Ready to take the plunge?

I got this idea from Sprinkle of Glitter

Book Talk: Since You've Been Gone ARC

01 February 2015

Release Date: February 17, 2014
Book: Since You've Been Gone
Author: Mary Jennifer Payne
Pages: 224
Source: Netgalley (I received this book in exchange for an honest review)
The Basics:Is it possible to outrun your past? Fifteen-year-old Edie Fraser and her mother, Sydney, have been trying to do just that for five years. Now, things have gone from bad to worse. Not only has Edie had to move to another new school she's in a different country. Sydney promises her that this is their chance at a fresh start, and Edie does her best to adjust to life in London, England, despite being targeted by the school bully. But when Sydney goes out to work the night shift and doesn't come home, Edie is terrified that the past has finally caught up with them. Alone in a strange country, Edie is afraid to call the police for fear that she ll be sent back to her abusive father. Determined to find her mother, but with no idea where to start, she must now face the most difficult decision of her life." 
Add it on Goodreads 

My Musings:

First I want to say that this is the first book I've read from YA fiction where I am older than the main character. This is a first for me and I'm not entirely sure how I feel about it. Anyways, I have to say I was somewhat excited to read this book, but the cover and the summary intrigued me so I decided to give it a shot. I tend to shy away from these type of books because I feel like there is a tendency to make it too dramatic and not properly developed. That being said I was pleasantly surprised that I liked this book, but It did let me down in some aspects.

The writing style is very simple. There isn't a lot of description within the novel. Its very much a simplistic way of writing, but in a way I felt like it did serve the book because of how fast pace it was. However because of how fast pace it was, and how simplistic the writing was I felt like I couldn't really connect with the story or the characters which for me, is a pretty fatal flaw. As a result it took me  a while to even begin to get into the story and get involved. I will say that there were several well written moments, like when she goes and see's her dad, or when she first arrives at her new school.

I found the plot to be pretty straight forward but pretty unrealistic and dramatic. The whole point of the novel is for Edie to find her mom and be able to deal with what she finds out. In this aspect itself, it's pretty solid and I enjoyed it. But there were a couple moments that I felt were added just for the sake of adding drama. Like when Jermaine jumps into the water to save a little kid. It didn't really help the plot along. It just elevated the drama. Or how instead of going to the police Edie decides to go look for her mom on her own. Now, if my mom went missing you bet I would call the police. If I really needed to I would look for her myself too. But if you take out these drama filled moments and leave the essential plot, its actually not a bad story line. Aside from that, some moments I felt like the author had it spot on. There's a moment were the author tackles racism and I those moments that unveil that side of humanity were pretty good. I have to say the moments that had more of a real feel, and just fit better into the story line elevated the plot and the overall book.

I didn't really like the characters. That being said, its probably because I didn't really connect with them, and because at times I feel like there were unrealistic. Similar to the plot issues, the characters had moments that didn't seem to make sense. I definitely admire Edie. I think she's a strong character and she's pretty bad ass for the most part. I just had a hard time agreeing with her decisions. I had a hard time being able to empathize with her because I was frustrated with her the majority of the time.
Jermaine I liked. He ends up helping Edie, but the way he decided to help her seemed like a little bit of a stretch. Aside from my initial reservation, Jermaine really grew on me and I did end up liking him. I guess I should emend my earlier statement to I didn't really like the main character.

Overall it was a pretty decent read. It wasn't anything special, and personally the cheesy drama level was a little too high for me. But If you can get over the tiny stretches and the extra ommphness of it all then you should give it a shot!

Coffee for thins book: Some moments can get to be too much, both on the cheesy level and the emotional level. So I recommend a Vanilla Latte Espresso. 

My Rating:

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