The Brittany Awards: Overall Winners

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Finally, this year’s Brittany Awards are coming to a close. Looking overall at the books I read this year, most earned around three stars. However, there were still five books that stood out from the rest and topped my list for my favorite books of the year. Here are my top five favorite books from 2018 (any books with a review will be linked to the book’s title):

Love, Life, and the List

It is no surprise that this book is on my top books of the year list. Love, Life, and the List currently ranks as my top Kasie West book, which is quite a feat since she is one of my favorite young adult contemporary authors.

The Names They Gave Us

It’s also not a surprise that The Names They Gave Us appears on my list because it was one of my favorite books this summer. This book absolutely blew me away and left me in tears, which is rare for me when I read a book. I had a feeling that I would love this book before I even read it, and somehow, this book even exceeded my expectations.

Save the Date

I was a little nervous about Save the Date before reading it because I heard that it wasn’t a typical Morgan Matson book. However, I found that I actually really loved this story. I thought this was a relatable coming of age story and I appreciated the large focus on family.

Stay Sweet

Stay Sweet is another book that I didn’t expect to love as much as I did. Like with Save the Date, I found myself completely engrossed in the story. I enjoyed the main character Amelia and her coming of age story over the summer. I appreciated the history of the creamery told through flashbacks and the girl boss aspects of the novel.

  • How to Say I Love You Out Loud by Karole Kozzo

How to Say I Love You Out Loud

This is another book that completely took me by surprise. I found myself crying so many times throughout this book. This book features a girl who has a brother with autism. Since the book is written by a school psychologist, this book does a great job of portraying a character with a disability and their special education services within a school setting. I can see myself recommending this book to a lot of people in 2019.

What were your favorite books of the year?

Christmas Classic Retelling Reviews: The Afterlife of Holly Chase/Pride, Prejudice, and Mistletoe

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It is a truth universally acknowledged that I love books about Christmas!

Even though Christmas was a few days ago, I managed to wrap up a few more Christmas reads during 2018. Here are the two books that I read and my thoughts on them:

  • Pride, Prejudice, and Mistletoe by Melissa de la Cruz

Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe

Pride, Prejudice, and Mistletoe by Melissa da la Cruz follows Darcy Fitzwilliam, a wealthy businesswoman who returns to her family home for the holidays. This book retells the classic story by Jane Austen, but from the perspective of a female Darcy.

I was hesitant, but also kind of excited to read this book. The concept is really interesting. I haven’t read a Pride and Prejudice retelling with a female Darcy or set at Christmas. However, I’m not the biggest fan of Melissa da la Cruz’s writing and I heard mixed reviews towards this book.

There were a few aspects I liked. I think Melissa de la Cruz did a great job accurately portraying a woman in a position of power and what the pressure and expectations that she faces everyday. Additionally, this book was a short, quick, and easy read that was perfect for the hectic Christmas season.

However, this book was mostly a miss for me. I didn’t feel the connection between Darcy and Luke. I felt like nothing went deeper than surface level, so every character was very one-dimensional and only embodied one or two personality traits. Additionally, it didn’t involve Christmas as much as I expected, so it didn’t set it apart from other Pride and Prejudice retellings that I’ve read. Additionally, I found the plot to be a little all over the place and the pacing to be off throughout the entire novel. I could really only tell where in the story I was by benchmark scenes from the original story.

I give this book two out of five stars.

  • The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand

The Afterlife of Holly Chase

I was excited to read The Afterlife of Holly Chase as soon as I read the premise. The Afterlife of Holly Chase is A Christmas Carol retelling. However, Holly Chase (the “Scrooge”) does not change her ways. As a result, she ends up dying and serving as the Ghost of Christmas Past after she passes. During this year’s Scrooge Project, she greatly identifies with the person selected and wants to help them change their ways.

This book started off strong for me. Like I mentioned earlier, the concept is really interesting. I also enjoyed Cynthia Hand’s writing style. Hand was one of the authors for My Lady Jane, so if you liked the writing style in that book, you will probably enjoy this as well. I also enjoyed the character growth that Holly experiences throughout the novel.

That being said, the novel did start to drag for me in the middle and towards the end as some aspects of the plot were repeated frequently throughout the novel. Additionally, there were some aspects of how time passes in the novel that created some uncomfortable situations in the novel. For example, Holly dies at seventeen, so it’s stated she’s stays at seventeen in her afterlife. However, the story begins five years after her death. During this time, she develops a crush on the new “Scrooge” who is seventeen years old. This just doesn’t it right with me.

I also have mixed feelings towards the ending of the book. While I liked that the author made it unexpected and more about Holly as a character, it also did one of my biggest pet peeves. I don’t like when books make an ending that makes it feel like some aspects of the story never happened or when they drastically alter major life events for characters in the book. This book does several of those things, which make me feel “eh” about some aspects of the book’s ending.

I give this book three out of five stars.

 

What are your favorite book that take place during Christmas or New Year’s?

Bookish Goals for 2019

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I’m not a big New Year’s Resolutions person. I may note a few goals in my head, but I don’t put pressure on myself to finish them. However, I do have a few bookish goals that I would like to accomplish in the new year.

  • Read 50 books.

Last year, I set the goal to read 50 books. I was able to accomplish this and read slightly more than I anticipated. This is the only goal that I technically keep track of since I rate books that I read on Goodreads.

  • Read multiple books in a genre that I don’t typically read.

Every year, I seem to pick up a genre, format, or new age range of books that I don’t typically read. Two years ago, I picked up a lot of graphic novels. This year, I read some new adult and adult books. This upcoming year, I can see myself picking up some mystery or thriller books since there are a few on my TBR. I’m always excited to expand my reading horizons and I can’t wait to see where this takes me in 2019.

  • Write the first draft of a book.

In 2018, I attempted Camp NanoWriMo and NanoWriMo… and I lost. Badly. However, I still want to finish the draft of the book I started during these two periods. I’m almost halfway there, so hopefully I can finish my draft more towards the beginning half of 2019.

 

What are your bookish goals for 2019?

 

Did I Meet my Bookish Goals in 2018?

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Last year, I set a few bookish goals. Here’s my progress:

  • Read 50 books.

I met my reading goal! I was worried that I wouldn’t meet my goal since I didn’t end up reading as many books this summer as I did last summer. However, I still exceeded my goal. I can’t wait to share all of the books that I read in 2018 in my annual collective post.

  • Comment on more book blogs.

I don’t comment on as many posts as I would like, however, I definitely found myself commenting more often on other blogs than I have in the past. I’ve actually left some comments on some beauty/lifestyle blogs as well since I really got back into makeup this year. This a goal I definitely want to keep working on in the New Year.

  • Post more on Bookstagram.

I got more into Bookstagram at the beginning of the year, but it quickly faded away. Maybe it is something I will work on more in the future, but for now I am focusing more on my blog and other creative projects.

  • Review every book that I read.

I thought that I reviewed every book that I read this year, but for some reason, I can’t find one for Eleanor and Park! Since it’s one book, I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t get a review up. However, I did write a lot of reviews this year since I did one for every other book that I read, so that is still something that can make me proud.

  • Read more books released this year.

I definitely found myself picking up more releases from this year. My library has been on fire stocking some new releases which really helps. Looking at my read list, I’ve read 12 releases from 2018 which seems higher than in past years.

 

What bookish goals/resolutions do you have?

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Hope to Find Under my Christmas Tree This Morning

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Merry Christmas!

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is books I hope to find under my Christmas tree this morning. This post perfectly wraps up my 25 days of Blogmas! I actually didn’t ask for too many physical books for Christmas this year since I’ve been purchasing more books on my Kindle recently than physical copies. However, here are three books/bookish items that I hope to find under my Christmas tree this morning:

  • Archenemies by Marissa Meyer

Archenemies (Renegades, #2)

Archenemies is the second book in Marissa Meyer’s superhero series. The first book garnered mixed reviews, but I really enjoyed it. I literally haven’t heard anything about the second book, so I am not sure what to expect. However, I am excited to continue this series since I did like the main characters, Nova and Adrian in the first book.

  • Snow in Love by Melissa de la Cruz, Aimee Friedman, Nic Stone, and Kasie West

Snow in Love

This winter short story collection would be such a cute Christmas gift. I haven’t read anything by Aimee Friedman or Nic Stone, so this would be a good opportunity to read something from authors that I’ve never read before. I haven’t had the most like with Melissa de la Cruz’s writing, however, I would be excited to read something by her set around Christmas. I’m a huge fan of Kasie West and that’s my driving force for wanting to read this short collection.

  • Amazon Gift Card

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Like I mentioned earlier, I enjoy reading books on my Kindle especially since I’m running out of room for physical book copies. I would love an Amazon gift card to purchase more books for my Kindle in the future.

What books do you hope to find under your Christmas tree this morning?

Also… thanks for joining me for Blogmas 2018! I’ll be wrapping up the year by posting every day until the end of December. I hope you stick around for some posts that wrap up my 2018 reading year and my hopes for my 2019 reading year!

The Christmas Joy Book Tag

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Merry Christmas Eve, everyone! I hope you’re having a great day with friends and family. To celebrate Christmas tomorrow, I decided to complete The Joy of Christmas Book Tag. Here are my answers:

  • Anticipation: The Christmas excitement is real, what book release(s) are you most anticipating?

Fame, Fate, and the First Kiss

I love Kasie West’s books, so I’m extremely excited for Fame, Fate, and the First Kiss. I’m usually not very fond of books that involve acting, but I hope Kasie West can change my mind.

  • Christmas Songs & Carols: What book or author can you not help but want to sing about?

Image result for karole cozzo

I discovered Karole Cozzo’s books this year. How to Say I Love You Out Loud quickly became one of my favorite contemporaries of the year. Karole Kozzo is a school psychologist. Since this book revolves around a girl who has a brother with autism within a school setting, her knowledge is extremely apparent. As a special education teacher, it was incredible to see a character with a disability written so well and to see the special education process so accurately represented.

  • Gingerbread Houses: What book or series has wonderful world building?

Ace of Shades (The Shadow Game, #1)

I love the world in Ace of Shades and can’t wait to explore it more in the sequel. I love the Las Vegas-type feel and think it was presented in an interesting way in the first book of this series.

  • A Christmas Carol: Favorite classic or one that you want to read

Anne of Green Gables (Anne of Green Gables, #1)

I tried reading Anne of Green Gables before, but never quite finished it. I especially love the cover of this edition. I really want to read this book because I apparently have the same personality type as Anne.

  • Christmas Sweets: What book would you love to receive for Christmas

Archenemies (Renegades, #2)

I had the first book in this series on my wish list last year and the sequel is on my list for this year. I haven’t heard too much about this book, so I have no idea what to expect when I finally read it.

  • Candles in the Window: What book gives you that warm fuzzy feeling

My New Crush Gave to Me

I read this book recently after it appeared as a Kindle deal. I was pleasantly surprised with how fun this book was to read, especially right before Christmas. This book reads like a cute Netflix movie, so it’s the perfect Christmas read!

  • Christmas Trees & Decorations: What are some of your favorite book covers?

Save the DateStay Sweet

I love vintage-y type book covers and these definitely have that feel for me. These were two of my favorite book covers of the year because they are so cute and fun!

  • Christmas Joy: What are some of your favorite things about Christmas and/or some of your favorite Christmas memories?

Image result for Disney princess sock advent

This year, my sister and I decided to pick up Disney princess sock advent calendars. I’ve never done an advent calendar in the past, but it has been so much fun to have a surprise gift the past few days, I will have to do it again in the future.

ARC TBR

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Every month on my blog, I typically post a to be read (TBR) list that I want to accomplish in the upcoming month. For this post, I decided to switch it up and only talk about books that are in my advanced reader copy (ARC) TBR list. Here are four books that I have received as digital ARCs from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review:

  • Judy Moody and the Right Royal Tea Party by Megan McDonald

Judy Moody and the Right Royal Tea Party (Judy Moody, #14)

Release Date: September 11, 2018

From Goodreads:

Jolly smashing! Could the Moodys really have royal blood? Judy brings her new look to a comical episode about the ups and downs of exploring a family tree.

Judy Moody is in a royal purple-mountain-majesties mood. Make that Majesty with a capital M! With Grandma Lou’s help, Judy has dug up proof that some old-timey Moodys (aka the brave Mudeyes) lived in merry olde England. In fact, if her grandpa’s notes are right, Judy might even be related to — royal fanfare, please — the Queen herself! Should Judy start packing her purple robe for a sleepover at Buckingham Palace? But then Judy’s family tree gets a few more shakes — thanks to her nemesis, Jessica “Fink” Finch — and some more surprises come tumbling out. Crikey! These new gems are not nearly as shiny or sparkly as the crown jewels. Now Judy has some right royal family secrets she’d like to keep hidden away in a dungeon somewhere — and especially away from Jessica, the princess in pink herself!

Technically, the release date for this book has already passed. However, I still want to read and review this book. I love a good middle grade book and haven’t picked up when in quite some time. Hopefully, this will inspire me to read some more middle grade books next year! The Judy Moody series is always hit or miss for me now, although I LOVED it when I was younger. I’m crossing my fingers this new installment can become a new favorite.

  • The Geography of Lost Things by Jessica Brody

The Geography of Lost Things

Release Date: October 2, 2018

From Goodreads:

In this romantic road trip story perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Morgan Matson, a teen girl discovers the value of ordinary objects while learning to forgive her absent father.

After Ali’s father passes away, he leaves his one and only prized possession—a 1968 Firebird convertible—to his daughter. But Ali doesn’t plan on keeping it. Not when it reminds her too much of all her father’s unfulfilled promises. So when she finds a buyer three hundred miles up the Pacific coast willing to pay enough money for the car to save her childhood home, Ali can’t wait to get going. Except Ali has no idea how to drive a stick shift. But guess who does?

Ali’s ex-boyfriend, Nico. And Nico has other plans.

He persuades Ali that instead of selling the car, they should “trade up” the items they collect on their trip to eventually reach the monetary amount Ali needs. Agreeing with Nico’s crazy plan, Ali sets off on a unique adventure that is unlike anything she ever could have expected.

And it’s through Ali’s travels, through the strangers she meets and the things that they value—and why they value them—that Ali eventually comes to understand her father and how his life may not have been as easy and carefree as she previously thought. Because just like the seemingly insignificant objects Ali collects, not everything is exactly as it appears.

Like with Judy Moody and the Royal Right Tea Party, the release date for this book has already passed. However, I’m still excited to read and review it. Seeing two books on my ARC TBR with the release dates already passed makes me really want to focus on reading and reviewing ARCs in a timely manner in the new year to best support the authors of these books. This description, like the recommendation at the top mentions, gives me Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour vibes. Morgan Matson and Sarah Dessen are two of my favorite young adult contemporary authors, so I definitely have high hopes for this book.

  • Famous in a Small Town by Emma Mills

Famous in a Small Town

Release Date: January 15, 2019

From Goodreads:

For Sophie, small-town life has never felt small. She has the Yum Yum Shoppe, with its famous fourteen flavors of ice cream; her beloved marching band, the pride and joy of Acadia High (even if the football team disagrees); and her four best friends, loving and infuriating, wonderfully weird and all she could ever ask for.

Then August moves in next door. A quiet guy with a magnetic smile, August seems determined to keep everyone at arm’s length. Sophie in particular.

Country stars, revenge plots, and a few fake kisses (along with some excellent real ones) await Sophie in this hilarious, heartfelt story.

I’m always hesitant to read books that involve someone famous. However, I’ve heard great reviews for books by Emma Mills, so I’m excited to read my first book by this author. This release date is quickly approaching, so it’s one that I’ve already started reading.

  • You’d Be Mine by Erin Hahn 

You'd Be Mine

Release Date: April 2, 2019

From Goodreads:

Annie Mathers is America’s sweetheart and heir to a country music legacy full of all the things her Gran warned her about. Superstar Clay Coolidge is most definitely going to end up one of those things.

But unfortunately for Clay, if he can’t convince Annie to join his summer tour, his music label is going to drop him. That’s what happens when your bad boy image turns into bad boy reality. Annie has been avoiding the spotlight after her parents’ tragic death, except on her skyrocketing YouTube channel. Clay’s label wants to land Annie, and Clay has to make it happen.

Swayed by Clay’s undeniable charm and good looks, Annie and her band agree to join the tour. From the start fans want them to be more than just tour mates, and Annie and Clay can’t help but wonder if the fans are right. But if there’s one part of fame Annie wants nothing to do with, it’s a high-profile relationship. She had a front row seat to her parents’ volatile marriage and isn’t interested in repeating history. If only she could convince her heart that Clay, with his painful past and head over heels inducing tenor, isn’t worth the risk.

This ARC has the furthest release date, so it is the last on my TBR. Once again, I’m always hesitant to read books involving famous people. However, I will still always pick them up to see if there is one that I really enjoy. This book’s description reminds me of Open Road Summer by Emery Lord. That book was only okay for me, but I still am hopeful that this one will work out for me.

 

What ARCs are on your TBR?

The Brittany Awards: Young Adult Contemporary Books

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For the past two Saturdays, I have hosted my annual end of the year reading awards on my blog. The first week, I highlighted my favorite New Adult/Adult books of the year. Last week, I detailed some of my favorite young adult fantasy books of the year. This week, I will wrap up the preliminary categories with Young Adult Contemporary books. Next week, I will conclude my awards with my Overall Favorite Book of the year.

Young adult contemporary books are definitely my most read books in any given year. This year, 75% of my books read were young adult contemporary. As a result, I have many books to choose from for this category, which makes it the most difficult for me out of the preliminary categories. For this year, I will select three honorable mentions as well as five winners for this category. Any books with reviews will be linked to the book’s title.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

Eleanor & Park

It seems like everyone had read this book except me. I actually tried to read this book before this year, but put it down after the first chapter. I’m glad that I tried reading this book again because I loved it the second time around. I literally couldn’t put this book down as I was reading it because I wanted to see what happened with the characters.

Breathe, Annie, Breathe

The Hundred Oaks series is a hit-or-miss series for me. However, Breathe, Annie, Breathe knocked my socks off! This is definitely my favorite story out of the bunch. I really enjoyed the main character, Annie, and seeing her grow throughout the story.

Love & Luck

Love and Gelato was an okay for me, but I really loved Love and Luck. Reading this book made me want to visit Ireland! While I was expecting more romance in this book, I ended up not really caring about that aspect due to the journey of the main character. I can’t wait to see what this author writes next!

Winners:

Love, Life, and the List

Love, Life, and the List quickly became my favorite Kasie West book this year. I read this book in one sitting… I just couldn’t put it down! I enjoyed the dynamic between the two main characters who stick out to me compared to some other couples featured in Kasie West’s books.

Stay Sweet

After hearing mixed reviews, I was hesitant to read Stay Sweet. However, it completely got me in the mood for summer! I loved reading about the history of the creamery and seeing the main character Amelia finally take charge of her life.

Save the Date

Like with Stay Sweet, I heard mixed reviews about Save the Date. However, I ended up loving it! While it doesn’t focus on the romance like Matson’s previous two books, I really liked the coming-of-age story as well as the focus on family relationships.

The Names They Gave Us

It takes a lot for me to cry when reading a book and this one had me absolutely bawling during the last ten pages. I could barely read! This book has all the perfect elements of a story for me. Like many others, I recommend this to fans of Sarah Dessen and Morgan Matson.

  • How to Say I Love You Out Loud by Karole Kozzo

How to Say I Love You Out Loud

I was definitely surprised by how much I loved this book. I hadn’t heard much about it, but it impressed me with the knowledge about people with disabilities and the special education process. Like The Names They Gave Us, this book definitely made me shed a few tears.

What were your favorite young adult contemporary books of the year?

Crazy Rich Asians: Book vs. Movie

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Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan follows Rachel Chu who spends the summer in Singapore with her boyfriend, Nicholas Young. Upon arriving in Singapore, Rachel discovers that her boyfriend’s family is extremely wealthy. Rachel soon clashes with her boyfriend’s mother who looks down on Rachel because she is American-born Chinese and not wealthy.

Crazy Rich Asians was a hyped up adult book. I don’t typically read adult books, but once I saw the movie trailer I knew that I needed to pick this one up. To me, Crazy Rich Asians looked laugh out loud funny with interesting characters and a look at a different culture. While this story didn’t meet all of my expectations, it was still enjoyable and I can see myself continuing on with the book and (hopefully) movie series.

When I first started reading the book, I was slightly put off by the writing style. It frequently switches points of views, and like any story, there will be some than you enjoy more than others. Also, there were a lot of descriptions to weed through which often makes me bored while reading. That being said, Crazy Rich Asians still has a page-turning quality. It’s like reading a tabloid or celebrity gossip site. You are so interested in the outlandish characters, you want to keep reading to see what happens to them. That being said, it didn’t have that laugh out loud quality that I expected.

In this aspect, I much preferred the movie than the book. The book takes all the small, drawn-out aspects of them and puts them in a more concise format. This book took a long time to read and sometimes I found myself trudging through certain parts. However, I felt like the action moved a lot more quickly in the movie and I liked how we saw all the different character’s lives but there still was a larger focus on Rachel.

The stand-out aspect of the book for me were the characters. The author does a great job with characterization. Each character deals with the “crazy rich” part of their lives differently and it was nice to see so many perspectives. There were so many little details about characters and their lives which made it easy to tell them apart and made them fun to discover.

I found that the movie did a great job with casting. All of the book characters literally came to life on the screen! From the costuming to the acting, everything was spot-on! Before I even heard a character’s name, I already knew who they were because how they appeared on screen completely matched the book. From the book and the movie, I would have to say Astrid is my favorite character. Even though the end of her story line in the movie has minor detail changes at the end, I hope they make another movie so I can see more of her story.

Overall, the book and the movie are pretty similar. However, I found the movie to be slightly more enjoyable. While they are similar, the movie is a little bit funnier for me which is what I was looking for when reading the book. I give the book three stars, but I give the movie four stars.

 

 

Least Favorite Books of 2018

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As people who love books, we hope to love every book we read. However, that is not always the case. Sometimes, even if we power through a book hoping it will get better, we’re left feeling unsatisfied with some or all of the book. Even if other people enjoy the book, we unfortunately don’t enjoy it ourselves.

Luckily for me, I didn’t encounter too many books that I really didn’t like as opposed to last year (see my 2017 list here). I’ve found that I’m only reaching for and buying books that I’m genuinely interested in the plot, even if it isn’t the most popular book at the moment. That being said, I’ve also discovered a lot of books that I really enjoyed this year, even if they aren’t my personal taste (check out my annual favorites lists, The Brittany Awards, here).

This year there were seven books that I wouldn’t find myself personally recommending to other readers. However, I know there are many people who love these books and maybe identified with an aspect of the story that I did not. I always try to give a little shout out to people who may enjoy these stories, so for a more in-depth review of the book, you can always see my reviews, which I link to book titles.

Without further adieu, here are my seven least favorite books from 2018:

  • The Summers by Iva Marie Palmer

The Summers

I had never hard of this book, but purchased it as a Kindle deal because it sounded like a fun summer read. However, I was really disappointed with this book. None of the characters are remarkable. I found the relationship to be a result of petty jealousy between sisters than actual romantic feelings. The relationships between the sisters had the potential to be good, but fell flat in favor of the lackluster romance.

  • Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart

Genuine Fraud

I have found with E. Lockhart’s books that I really enjoy her fast-paced writing style, but I’m a little underwhelmed when the big twist is revealed and that overall the story is average. Genuine Fraud is really no exception to those expectations. Genuine Fraud is a book I finished quickly and I liked seeing the mystery unravel from the end to the beginning. However, the structure of this novel couldn’t save it from the bland characters and recycled story line.

  • Textrovert by Lindsey Summers

Textrovert

I actually found Textrovert to be an average read until the second half of the story. (WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD). Towards the end, it is revealed that the love interest sent explicit photographs of his former girlfriend as revenge when they broke up. Eventually, the girl was forced to leave town due to bullying. Other characters try to justify that he is a good guy because his behavior has changed since this incident. For me, I didn’t buy that. Looking back into the novel, I found many incidents that disproved this and it made me mad how the author even had his former girlfriend come back to defend him to the main character in this book.

An Enchantment of Ravens

Out of all the books on this list, this book made me the least angry and I found myself more disappointed than anything. I’ve been on a huge fairy kick so I was excited to see this book on the market. I especially was interested when I heard it was a stand alone, which doesn’t happen too often with young adult fantasy. I heard unfavorable reviews before picking this one up. However, in my experience, when I go in with lower expectations then I usually find myself pleasantly surprised. However, I left with underwhelmed feelings towards this book, similar to other readers.

Biggest Flirts (Superlatives, #1)

Biggest Flirts is the first book in the Superlatives series by Jennifer Echols. This series was overall a miss for me with the exception of the last book, Most Likely to Succeed. Out of the three, this was definitely my least favorite as I really disliked both of the main characters. Tia was the party girl who somehow got the highest grades in class without even trying and the latter stereotype is one that annoy’s me beyond belief in books. She didn’t treat people well, but for some reason, every guy wanted to date her. As for Will, he was just a jerk. He got mad he was Biggest Flirts with Tia because it would “jeopardize his future” but had no problem flirting with her before AND after the award was announced AND when he was in a relationship. I found myself rolling my eyes way too much during this novel to enjoy it.

Perfect Couple (Superlatives, #2)

Perfect Couple is the second book in the Superlatives series by Jennifer Echols. I really didn’t like either of the main characters in this book. I took the biggest issue with how their terrible actions were justified. At the beginning of this book, both Harper and Brody are in relationships. However, their significant others are portrayed as awful people with no redeeming qualities. As a result, when they both inevitably cheat on their partners with each other, their cheating is justified. I also found that the main character Harper is a little stalker-ish of Brody in the beginning of the story which made me cringe.

From Twinkle, with Love

From Twinkle, With Love by Sandhya Menon follows aspiring high school filmmaker Twinkle as she creates a film for an upcoming film festival. For me, I didn’t enjoy how the whole film aspect was included in this book. I felt like the letters to female filmmakers could have been cool, but it wasn’t well executed. Plus, there were very few scenes actually dedicated to the film making. When it was included, the author fast forwarded over the entire process. However, my largest problem with this book was I did not like the main character, Twinkle. I found that Twinkle was very hypocritical throughout the novel. She was angry no one listened to her ideas and at girls that bullied her. However, Twinkle always put down other people’s ideas and pitted girls against each other on camera. While Twinkle does somewhat take ownership of her actions, the way she treated other people throughout the majority of the novel left a sour taste in my mouth. Additionally, the romance was not believable to me and since they occupied the majority of the novel, it made the novel just fall flat for me.

 

What were your least favorite reads of 2018?