Tag Archives: 4 Stars

All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman

All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman

All of Us Villains is extremely well-written Hunger Games fanfic. Take the Hunger Games, add magic, and make it between children in seven specific families and you have the premise of this book. A character even comments that someone else almost made him spill his drink on his pants. The story is told from the alternating viewpoints of four characters, three chosen as their family’s champion and one not. I got sucked into the story and then it just ended. There was no resolution whatsoever. It just got to a point and, boom, done. I wasted no time ordering the second book of the duology, but it still annoyed me a bit. I have no problem with series, but I do like for each book to wrap stuff up at least somewhat. This one answered one single question (who wrote A Tradition of Tragedy) and that’s it. Not satisfying at all. Other than that, I loved the book. I recommend this book to people who like magic set in the current day and enjoyed reading The Hunger Games. Just be aware that the two books really should just be one single book and expect to move on to the second book quickly to finish the story.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 85
Pages Read in 2022: 30,226
Graphic Novels: 2

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Filed under Fantasy, Reason: Grim Readers, Reason: Literati, Young Adult

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

Where the Crawdads Sing is a slow moving book. I generally do not care for books like that, but for this one it totally worked. It just fits the vibe and makes you kind of feel like you’re in the marsh, living a little slower, noticing things happening around you. The character development in this book is phenomenal. Even some of the side characters grow and change. The descriptions of things living in the marsh are incredible and vivid. The ending is both surprising and, when I think about, just what part of me hoped for. Kya learning to read so quickly and being able to comprehend high level textbooks is somewhat questionable as is her ability to so easily communicate with others even though she was so young when her family left her and spends long periods of time all alone. I recommend this book to adults who enjoy contemporary fiction.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 83
Pages Read in 2022: 29,583
Graphic Novels: 2

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Filed under Contemporary Fiction, Reason: Book Club, Reason: Grim Readers

The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor by Shaenon K. Garrity and illustrated by Christopher Baldwin

The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor by Shaenon K. Garrity and illustrated by Christopher Baldwin

The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor is really funny. I laughed out loud several times. The pictures are very nicely drawn. I recommend it to people who like graphic novels, especially those who also like gothic novels.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 82
Pages Read in 2022: 29,204
Graphic Novels: 2

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Filed under Graphic Novel, Reason: Grim Readers, Reason: Literati

Holly Banks Full of Angst by Julie Valerie

Holly Banks Full of Angst by Julie Valerie

Holly Banks Full of Angst is so over the top farcically funny. Every character is exaggerated but still totally relatable. Everyone around Holly in her new village seems perfect. She tries so hard to fit in but is still a hot mess no matter what she does. The head of the PTA is kind of a bully, and maybe a little crazy, pressuring people into volunteering so they can have a much better school and town then the next town over. I laughed out loud several times while reading it. It’s just such a fun mind vacation. I recommend it to anyone who has ever dealt with “perfect” neighbors or an overbearing PTA.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 77
Pages Read in 2022: 27,870
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Contemporary Fiction, Reason: Grim Readers, Reason: LitHub Bingo

The Do-Over by Bethany Turner

The Do-Over by Bethany Turner

The Do-Over is a really cute book that is more or less predictable, but in all the ways you want a romcom to be predictable. While I found it easy to put the book down as needed, I did look forward to picking it back up when I had more time to read. While the end was perfect, I wish there had been a little bit more and it kept going for at least a few more pages. I recommend this book to adults who enjoy clean romantic comedies.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 73
Pages Read in 2022: 26,404
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Reason: Book Club, Romance

I Killed Zoe Spanos by Kit Frick

I Killed Zoe Spanos by Kit Frick

The first about fifty pages of I Killed Zoe Spanos were slow and quite confusing. I was starting to question why I had chosen it (the description sounded great). But then it started getting good. And then it got amazing (and ended up even better than the description made it sound). It was still a little confusing, or rather crazy making. I wanted to believe from the start that Anna had lied in her confession and that she had not killed Zoe, but then she knew things she shouldn’t have known if she was innocent and blackouts weren’t uncommon for her so I kept questioning my own thinking. A lot of it was psychological and so creepy. When I read it at night I couldn’t go to sleep right away after putting it down because it had me creeped out (granted it doesn’t take much to creep me out). I found giving the background of the case mostly through podcast transcripts very enjoyable. There were some things at the end that I really never saw coming. I highly recommend this book to teens and up who enjoy psychological thrillers.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 62
Pages Read in 2022: 22,559
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Reason: Literati, Reason: We Be Book'N, Thriller, Young Adult

How to Pack for the End of the World by Michelle Falkoff

How to Pack for the End of the World by Michelle Falkoff

How to Pack for the End of the World reads very quickly. I really enjoyed the creativity of each of the kids’ games they made up. The friendships between them are interesting and complex like any relationship in life. I thought the end was a little awkward and rushed. The author seemed to really want it all tied up in a nice bow with a very happy ending and I’m not sure that really made sense. With so much of it being like real life, I thought the ending wasn’t really believable, at least not without more explanation added. Otherwise, though, I loved it. I recommend it to anyone teens and up.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 60
Pages Read in 2022: 21,800
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Reason: Literati, Reason: We Be Book'N, Young Adult

If the Shoe Fits by Julie Murphy

If the Shoe Fits by Julie Murphy

If the Shoe Fits is cheesy, funny, and predictable in all the best ways. It’s set on a reality dating show set up like the Bachelor. I’ve never watched a single episode of the Bachelor, but I don’t live under a rock so I know pretty much how they go and the author really portrayed it well (including the complete absurdity and unreality of it all). The body positivity and representation is excellent and works naturally into the story. The end was exactly what I wanted it to be. The only problem I had with the book was a few editing issues that annoyed me (such as calling a flight from New York to Los Angeles transatlantic and misspelling brakes as breaks). It’s just such pleasant brain candy. I recommend it to adults who want a little mind vacation.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 56
Pages Read in 2022: 20,190
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Contemporary Fiction, Reason: We Be Book'N, Romance

Hotel Magnifique by Emily J. Taylor

Hotel Magnifique by Emily J. Taylor

I really enjoyed Hotel Magnifique. There came a point where I hated to put it down. I had to know what was going on and how everything would be wrapped up (answer: amazingly well). The only problem I had with the book was like half the book being all “I’ll tell you what you need to know soon, I just don’t have time right now” over and over. I just wanted to scream at Bel to just tell her already. The descriptions of the hotel and the magic were really vivid and exciting. I recommend this book to teens and up who enjoy magic and fantasy.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 54
Pages Read in 2022: 19,563
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Fantasy, Reason: Owlcrate, Reason: We Be Book'N, Young Adult

Let Me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson

Let Me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson

The first about 50 pages of Let Me Hear a Rhyme were very slow, introducing characters and explaining background. Once it got past that point, it picked up quite a bit. The chapters are told from three alternating viewpoints plus some inserted chapters that explain some things that happened before. Two of the main characters are hiding things, including from the reader, that are necessary to understand completely what happened to their friend and brother. There is quite a bit of slang, some defined at the end, some not, and also some language some may find offensive. The book has a really nice rhythm. I recommend it to teens and up, especially those who enjoy hip hop and rap.

4 (out of 5) Stars
Books Read in 2022: 44
Pages Read in 2022: 16,184
Graphic Novels: 1

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Filed under Historical Fiction, Reason: Literati, Reason: We Be Book'N, Young Adult