Friday, January 29, 2016

UnSlut: A Diary and a Memoir by Emily Lindin

I was driving to work and listening to NPR (I'm not "old", I just love NPR) and I heard the story of Emily Lindin's, book, "Unslut". I was intrigued and it spoke to me. Not because I went through what she did, quite the opposite actually. 

I was intrigued because I remember girls in school be labeled "slut" and never quite grasping why or understanding why it was happening to them. I knew and was friends with some of the girls who were given this unfortunate label. I remember the confusion and heartache. One friend was labeled a "slut" because her bra strap broke in class! Another friend was called a slut because of a blue dress she wore to school one day, which wasn't any worst then any other dress anyone wore. She was just tall, slim and had a figure that could carry it. It came down simply to jealousy. Another girl was labeled a slut because a mutual friend found out she was taking birth control to regulate her periods. She was a virgin and hadn't even kissed a boy and she was a "slut" based on something medical. 

I recall a handful of friends in tears over a label, perhaps a label we didn't even understand. What is a slut exactly? I had to google it, did you? I wanted a true definition. A slut is a woman who has many casual partners or a woman with a low standard of cleanliness.  I knew the first definition but what constitutes too many casual partners and who sets those standards? 

In an ideal world the slut shamming would stop but in the real world it just isn't going to happen any time soon.

Lindin's diary is in so many ways full of innocence and self discovery. It offers perhaps one of the most true looks into the life of being young. 
 

Read it, share it and pass it along to a teen.

Grade: A

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Mockingjay Feb 25, 2014 by Suzanne Collins

The first time I read, "Mockingjay" I wasn't impressed and didn't care much for it. To be honest, I almost didn't re-read the series because of this final book. It wasn't because I hated it, but because I was disappointed in the way things transpired however this has changed dramatically.

When I first read it, I remember being rather bored and forcing myself to get through many of the chapters and build up. This time I found myself enjoying the character development and the build up to the final moment.

The first time I  read the ending, I hated it.... If you haven't read it, I advise you to close this out because I'm about to give a spoiler.

I felt it was totally cliched that Katniss ended up with Peta. In fact, I had wanted her to end up with some unknown character. I never felt that Peta or Gale were a match for her. I know realized that Peta was the best choice for her, they could related to one another on levels that no one else could and what they had been trough tied them to one another. I believe that being with Gale would have been a disaster for both of them. They would both have spent their entire lives blaming Gale for the demise of Prim since it was his idea behind the technology that resulted in her death.

I  still stand by my belief that them having children wasn't true to their characters. I also wish that, Collins had tied up a few things, such as what had become of some beloved characters. It was still a bit to sickly sweet for me but I enjoyed it and can now say that this trilogy was worth the read.

Grade: A +



Sunday, January 24, 2016

Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games) by Suzanne Collins

Catching Fire, remains my favorite book in the trilogy. It's quite funny that this is the case because I tend to find the second book in a trilogy trite, long and boring. This one still remains the most entertaining of the three.

The introduction of new characters adds much "fire" to an already intriguing series. When, I first read Catching Fire, I didn't care much for Finnick and I despised Johanna. Now, I like them! I also found myself feeling very sympathetic towards, Haymitch. I suddenly had a much deeper understanding of these characters and how their battles in the previous Hunger Games had shaped them into who they are.

The cast of characters is large but Collin manages to bring them each to life and make you feel emotions associated with each. There is a lot of drama, love, romance, violence and suspense. I also love the level of defiance and the way each side plays on another.

Grade: A+

Thursday, January 21, 2016

The Hunger Games (Hunger Games Trilogy, Book 1) by Suzanne Collins

It was time to dust off an old favorite and re-read it. I will be re-reading the entire trilogy. I think, I will have a different perspective reading them weeks apart rather than years!

I still LOVE, The Hunger Games and it's slew of characters. I  fell in love with characters that I previously had little to no feelings for.  I noticed things I had either long forgotten or somehow missed the first time I read this book.

The creativity behind such things as tracker jackers,  mocking jays and wolf mutations is  brilliant and adds to the belief of this taking place in the future. I initially hated, hated the love triangle but I've grown to appreciate it and understand it on a different level.

Basically -- I enjoyed re-reading this book -- it was like reconnecting with an old friend. If you haven't read this series yet, do so and if you have re-read it! You'll be happy you did.

Grade: A+

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King

I am not a huge fan of short stories but I simply could not put down this book.

I love the creativity and the quick character development, King puts into his characters. There are about 20 stories in this anthology and some are creepy to the max! There is a wide range to stories that show case his talent and some stories leave you wanting more!

Some stories made me laugh, maybe it's because I find humor in all things and in particular supernatural horror. There is something in this collection for everyone, you might dismiss one story but the love the next!

This is a perfect book for King lovers or those just finding his works.

Grade: A



Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Summer Secrets by Jane Green

“For as long as I can remember, I have always had the feeling of not quite fitting in, not being the same as everyone else.” ― Jane Green, Summer Secrets 

Drama, Drama and more Drama! This is one delectable read you will devour. Jane Green not only knows how write, she knows how to entertain and draw you in like moths to a fire.

Cat is a recovering alcoholic and this book centers on the ramifications of the deeds she did while under the influence of alcohol and how sometimes the past will come back at bite ya!

The book is told in both flashback and real time. Green captures what it is like to be around an alcoholic and the struggles of those recovering. Some characters are far-fetched but others are easy to relate to.

A perfect lazy day read and one to share and pass along to friend and family.

Grade: A

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Happily Ever After: Companion to the Selection Series by Kierra Cass

"You've made me better. And I want to be better for you. I want to be better with you."  Kierra Cass

I love the Selection Series and this collection of stories is a wonderful bonus. Cass, gives readers a deeper analysis of characters adding to the fun. The characters are seen in a different light, events that are important but don't take place in the books are given life. I love seeing a different side of characters and learning more about characters that are in "just" supporting roles.


The contents of Happily Ever After are as follows:
(Taken from Kiera Cass )
  • The Prince (with the two bonus chapters), Maxon’s novella
  • The Guard, Aspen’s novella
  • The Queen, Amberly’s novella
  • The Favorite, Marlee’s novella
  • Three scenes from Celeste’s POV
  • Lucy’s scene (bonus scene from The One)
  • The bonus epilogue
  • Where are they now?
  • A map
  • Various illustrations


This is a swoon worth book and a fast read.

Grade: A


The Mothers by Brit Bennett

The more time he spent around her, the more he realized how rarely he thought anybody else was actually good. Nice, maybe, but niceness was ...