The Queen of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner

Summary (via the author's website): "The strong-willed queens of Attolia and Eddis maneuver for power and to protect their lands in this fast-paced sequel to the stellar Newbery Honor Book The Thief. Eugenides, the Thief of Eddis, has always been able to break into any locked room or guarded palace to spy for this queen, but as this novel opens, the gods turn against him. The Queen of Attolia seems to have ruined his life, yet a plot twist sets the obvious on its head and leads to an unexpected conclusion. Scheming, spying, thieving, and fighting fill the pages of this cleverly plotted, enjoyable tale."

Review: "Does anyone remember that thing about in Graceling? About Leck? No reason...
Anyway, um, HOLY character development. Am I in love with Eugenides? No, because I think he's a little (maybe a lot?) too young for me. But if I were 16, I sure would be."

Goodreads Shelves: addictive, bechdel-test, fluffy, funny, nook-ya


My Boyfriend Wrote a Book About Me by Hilary Winston

Summary (via the author's website): "Just when Hilary Winston is finally getting her life together she finds out her ex-boyfriend wrote an unflattering novel about her, referring to her as the "fat-assed girlfriend." This sends her into a downward spiral that's sometimes hilarious, and other times heartbreaking, causing her to question that almost-five-year relationship - as well as every relationship she's had before and after it. Now Hilary reveals her dirty laundry in a laugh-out-loud, non-fiction book written for every woman who's ever been dumped."

Review: This book got three stars. I would have given it four, but it was a little too ...raunchy? ...irreverent? ...for my taste. I was a little unsettled and fascinated by that aspect of it. I wouldn't really recommend it to many of my friends, and I kind of hope that if anyone I know read it, they wouldn't think of me.

It was a very (VERY) honest book, which is a big point that she makes early in the book. THIS book is real. It's NON fiction. The book that Kyle wrote is in the fiction section, which upsets Hilary because she know that he didn't make it all up. Kyle's book takes real things and puts them in a (mostly) fictional story, while Hilary's book does its best to be completely honest.

Well said, Hilary. And the fact that you write for Community makes me like you that much more.

Goodreads Shelves: addictive, bechdel-test, funny, is-this-a-kissing-book, my-kind-of-woman, nook-adult



Rumor Has It by Jill Mansell

Summary (via the author's website): "When newly single Tilly Cole impulsively quits her London job for a fresh start in the small town of Roxborough she finds she's arrived in a hotbed of gossip, intrigue and rampant rivalry for the most desirable men. Tilly has no intention of joining in – she's just happy with her new Girl Friday job.

Then she meets Jack Lucas.

Jack is irresistible… and he's got his eye on Tilly. But there are shocking rumours about his wicked reputation. Tilly doesn’t want to be just another notch on anyone's bedpost. But is she being mature and sensible – or is she running away from the love of her life?"

Review: This was a fun book. I liked the characters a lot, although I noticed something in this book especially that bothered me.

The man always realizes early on that he's super into/in love with the girl, then spends the rest of the book either waiting for or convincing her to come around. Do guys really do that?

Anyway, it was a smart read, and I liked it a lot. I'm gonna take a break from Jill Mansell (four in a row is a little much for me), but I'll definitely be back to read the rest.

 Goodreads Shelves: addictive, bechdel-test, fluffy, funny, is-this-a-kissing-book, my-kind-of-woman, nook-adult 



Miranda's Big Mistake by Jill Mansell

Summary (via the author's website): "Miranda is thrilled when she meets Greg at a cocktail party. He's gorgeous, he's funny - and he's very keen. Just what a girl needs to put some sparkle in her life. Heavens, he's practically perfect! Greg likes Miranda a lot. She's young, she's pretty, and she never talks about babies. Of course he hasn't told her everything about himself - even the sweetest girls can be a bit funny about a man who's just left his newly pregnant wife. But there's no way she's going to find out - or is there?

Luckily for Miranda men are like buses - you don't see any for ages then three come along at once. She just needs to catch the right one..."

Review: I feel like these books are getting progressively less funny as I read them. And the main characters are getting less likeable. I mean, Miranda's fine. But I don't really like her all that much. I think she was supposed to be... like, quirky and whimsical, but she mostly just came across as kind of weird and slightly obnoxious.

And my favorite relationship wasn't the one she ended up with, either. It was bachelor number 2, actually. Even though that circumstance was completely contrived... Seriously? Out of nowhere you just decide that this random girl you met weeks ago, once, is the girl of your dreams?

All that aside, it was cute enough. The side characters were fun.

Goodreads Shelves: addictive, bechdel-test, fluffy, funny, nook-adult



The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

Summary (via the author's website): "Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end. No more puzzles. No more variables. And no more running. Thomas was sure that escape meant he and the Gladers would get their lives back. But no one really knew what sort of life they were going back to.

In the Maze, life was easy. They had food, and shelter, and safety . . . until Teresa triggered the end. In the world outside the Maze, however, the end was triggered long ago.

Burned by sun flares and baked by a new, brutal climate, the earth is a wasteland. Government has disintegrated-and with it, order-and now Cranks, people covered in festering wounds and driven to murderous insanity by the infectious disease known as the Flare, roam the crumbling cities hunting for their next victim . . . and meal.

The Gladers are far from finished with running. Instead of freedom, they find themselves faced with another trial. They must cross the Scorch, the most burned-out section of the world, and arrive at a safe haven in two weeks. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them.

Thomas can only wonder-does he hold the secret of freedom somewhere in his mind? Or will he forever be at the mercy of WICKED?"

Review: I'm gonna say something that goes against certain principles I have. But... I really could have done without the kissing stuff. Like, all of it.

I know, right? I'm usually so in favor! But I honestly think I could have done without it.

It's fine, in and of itself. And taking it out would have changed some of the themes of the book, so it's fine where it is.

But as a book, I felt some of the kissing stuff weakened it a little. Like, not enough survival and fighting for your life. Too much taking a break for kissing.

Other than that, awesome book. Lots of nail-biting and intrigue. Love it.

Goodreads Shelves: addictive, is-or-would-be-a-good-movie, is-this-a-kissing-book, my-kind-of-woman, thought-provoking



The Strange Case of Finley Jayne by Kady Cross

Summary (via goodreads): "Finley Jayne knows she's not 'normal'. Normal girls don't lose time, or have something inside them that makes them capable of remarkably violent things. Her behavior has already cost her one job, so when she's offered the lofty position of companion to Phoebe, a debutante recently engaged to Lord Vincent, she accepts, despite having no experience. Lord Vincent is a man of science with his automatons and inventions, but Finley is suspicious of his motives where Phoebe is concerned. She will do anything to protect her new friend, but what she discovers is even more monstrous than anything she could have imagined…"

Review: Ok, novella. So not much of a plot, not much of character development, and not much of anything, really. Because it's a novella. So here's what it had:

-World-building. The characters went to a couple parties, they went out shopping, and they went out to socialize and be seen a little bit. And everywhere they went, the steampunk world was described and lived in, to give me as a first-time reader of this series (the first book is out already, yes?) a feel for what it's like to live there. It was a huge priority, thrown in at every possible moment, yet it wasn't pushy or clunky; it was just world-building, in a big way.

-Finley. So I looked at this novella as kind of an advertisement for the rest of the series (why else would you give away a prequel novella as a free ebook?), and because it doesn't seem to me like Phoebe or Lady Morton are in the next book (but I could easily be wrong), I as a reader really needed to like Finley. So she (obviously) took center stage. I liked her well enough; she seems sensible, and also willing to admit when she's wrong, while at the same time slightly schizophrenic. (I was SO glad that even though there was that whole "weaker side being asleep thing," that she still remembered her excursion in the middle of the night. Memory loss would have made that WAY too Jekyll and Hyde for me.)

I may or may not read the real books in this series; we'll see if they cross my path or not.

Goodreads Shelves: addictive, bechdel-test, fluffy, my-kind-of-woman, nook-ya


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