Monday, March 30, 2020

Weekly Wrap-Up + Mini Reviews - #2

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 6:00 PM 0 comments

Today we are wrapping up for 3/23-3/29. I managed to read 12 total items. Of the 12 items, 4 were full books and 8 were graphic novels.

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
This was ADORABLE. I now have to go buy a physical copy. I keep telling my husband that these little comics are so us.

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I really enjoyed the meaning behind all of the little comics and I feel like parents should check this out. I didn't really like the art style and it made it a little hard to focus on the chat bubbles sometimes.

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Perfection. I laughed so hard at some of these. I have always loved crude humor so this was definitely a good choice for me.

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Oh no!

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
I wanted to love this but some of the skits didn't really make sense to me or I just didn't find them funny.

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Being able to enjoy and laugh at mental health issues portrayed by a pigeon was something I never thought would happen in my life. But, alas, it has happened. I can die happy.

Date Read: 3/23
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I really loved the author's webcomics so an entire book with his work just seemed like a dream. Such cute and funny skits and I enjoyed the entire book.

Date Read: 3/24
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐.5
Holy crap. I received this book as an eARC back before it came out but sadly that was around the time when my depression took over and I could barely function. I am so sad that I couldn't read this book back when I got it because DAMN. This was such a ride. School shootings are what we usually hear about but a school bombing? Dang. I really loved how this book was so much more than just a school bombing. It showed the lives of 6 students who were in the school the day before school started and what they were doing there. It showed racism, mental health, sexuality and so much more. I am so happy I decided to reach into my Netgalley backlog, otherwise, I might never have picked this up.

Date Read: 3/24
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I have seen Adam's art all over Facebook but I never knew who was behind it until I saw this book pop up on my libraries app. I grabbed it, read it in like 10 minutes and loved it. I could connect to so many things that were portrayed in the book and I love the fact that things were brutally honest.

Date Read: 3/25
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I had to sit down after finishing this book and really ask myself, did I really enjoy the book or was it just okay and I want to give it 5 stars because it's Marie Lu? Sadly, I came to realize that I didn't really LOVE this story. It was really good, don't get me wrong, but I felt like it was boring. If I hadn't read this as an audiobook I have a feeling my rating would be lower. 

Date Read: 3/27
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
This book was exactly what I expected it to be. I am a little upset about the fact that its a book about teenagers yet it was sold as an adult book. There was a lot of information to take in as you read the book and I think, if I find the time, I will be rereading this because I KNOW I missed some stuff. The end of the book just had me sitting here like who? what? where? when? Are you there God? It's me, Jenn.

Date Read: 3/29
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I knocked off an entire star because the beginning of the book was kind of dull and had me saying wtf to myself? But after some progression, the book wasn't boring anymore but it DID keep saying wtf until the very end, I think I might have said it a few times after finishing the book, as well. You know how people say, you think you know but you have no idea? Yeah, that should have been the real title of this book. 

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Review: All Your Twisted Secrets by Diana Urban - 4 stars

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 6:00 PM 1 comments
Title: All Your Twisted Secrets
Genre: Young Adult Mystery
Author: Diana Urban
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication: March 17th 2020
Cover Rating: 4/5
Reading Format: Provided ARC

All Your Twisted Secrets by Diana Urban is the story of six teens who were offered a wonderful scholarship that they are supposed to attend a dinner to accept but this dinner ends up becoming an escape room from hell scenario.

What could six seemingly random teenagers have in common besides being invited to a scholarship dinner? Well, for one, most of them are or have been friends. Two, a few of them had a hand in damaging some of the lives of the others. Three, they all have secrets that lead someone to lock them in a room with no choice but to murder one of them or they all die. What would you have to do to someone to make them angry enough to kill?

This story was very interesting. There were so many layers and histories that it was very fun having them unravel before you. The plot goes back and forth between past and present and it leads us up to the inevitable end where everyone's secrets are left out in the open but it turns out even the person who locked them in the room had it all wrong. Well, maybe not ALL wrong.

It was around the halfway point when I started to realize who the 'bad guy' was but the motive still wasn't entirely clear. By the end of the book, I still didn't fully put it all together and was very shocked by the conclusion. So many lives potentially ruined because of bullying and revenge and the worst part is... Bullying. Happens. Every. Day. 

In the end, this story was very suspenseful even though some of the secrets weren't all that big. But the plot ran a lot deeper than just some forced escape room shenanigans. I enjoyed all the layers to the story and I'm glad it wasn't just a face value plot. I am also glad the book managed to be like One of Us is Lying without being a replica.

Overall, I gave the book 4/5 stars.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

REVIEW: The Skin Factory by Lucas Pederson - 4 stars

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 12:00 PM 0 comments
Title: The Skin Factory
Genre: YA Sci-Fi/Horror
Author: Lucas Pederson
Publisher: LVP
Publication: December 24th 2019
Cover Rating: 5/5
Reading Format: Provided eBook

The Skin Factory by Lucas Pederson is the story of Chase and how he must overcome being a bodiless soul working in a factory in some twisted form of an afterlife to save his sister, mother and the girl he loves.

Chase is dead. Well, not DEAD, his soul still lives on, but his human body is very much dead. And if losing his human body wasn't bad enough, he was plucked off his path on his way to heaven to work in a twisted factory creating these robot type bodies for souls/creatures to inhabit in order to integrate themselves into life on earth.

When Chase finds out the bodies he and his fellow souls are creating are going to be used for the nefarious purpose of something called the Obsidious he decides that he must escape the factory in order to protect his sister and mother. 

With the help of Bal, the soul who removed him from his path after death, Chase jumps into one of the bodies he helped manufacture and warps back to earth. The problem is, Chase might have taken the wrong body. But no matter what vessel he is in he still has to save the people he loves and maybe even all of humanity if he is feeling up to the task.

One aspect of the authors writing that I really enjoyed was the fun 'cuss words' and phrases he made up for Chase to use. A few of my favorites being, fruitbatty, cheese'n'rice, thank the gods and crunchy peanut butter and, floundernuts of purgatory. These definitely added to Chase's smartassed attitude/behavior.

In the end, this was a very solid book and I just found out it's going to be in three parts so I can't wait to see what happens next. The only complaints I really have about the book are one, I wish it was longer and two, I wish his mom being in the asylum was more prevalent, I love asylums so I was hoping we would get a little more time there. Other than that, the book had minor spelling/grammar errors that you tend to find in self-published/indie books but they weren't insane like some of the ones I have seen that took away from the story. 

Overall, I gave the book 4/5 stars.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Mini-Review: Reverie by Ryan La Sala - 4 stars

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 5:00 PM 0 comments
Title: Reverie
Genre: Young Adult LGBT Fantasy-ish
Author: Ryan La Sala
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication: December 3rd 2019
Cover Rating: 5/5
Reading Format: Provided ARC + Finished Copy

Reverie by Ryan La Sala is a hybrid of a book. We get to follow Kane one his journey to get his memory back but along the way, we are shown some pretty epic fantasy worlds and some killer powers. This book really tested my imagination and I loved that.

Kane was recently in a pretty bad accident. An accident that caused the burning of a pretty important historical building, caused him to end up in a coma and caused him to lose his memory. But what if the accident wasn't what caused him to lose his memory? What is Kane has the ability to do something... magical? What if the life Kane remembers is just a ruse?

After the accident and Kane has had time to heal, he goes back to school only to realize that his memories are jumbled. Why does it feel like he knows some people when his memory is telling him that he hates or steers clear of them? Ursula, a girl he remembers not being friends with, ends up helping him out and that just opened up a floodgate of even more confusion and doubt.

This book is Magical Realism, at least by my definition. But when I went to check Goodreads, Magical Realism wasn't even remotely one of the genres listed for this book so that confused me. But I am keeping this review short because I feel like this is a book that needs to be experienced personally.

What I first picked this book up, I could not get into it. I have no idea what the problem was, maybe the fact that it was contemporary and I might not have been in the mood at the time but once I got past 100 pages I flew through the story. It was a wild ride about people's dreams/fantasies turning into something called a reverie which means it kind of comes to life but if it's not stopped it could end up destroying the people in the reverie. You know what, just read the book. 

In the end, I thought this book had a really solid storyline and plot but some things could have been written/portrayed better and there were some mistakes that transferred over to the finished copy of the book. I can't wait to see what the author writes next.

Overall, I gave the book 4/5 stars.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

10 Books/Series I am THANKFUL for in 2019

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 12:00 PM 2 comments
I am very grateful to all the authors who have put their beautiful words onto pages. I am very grateful to the publishers for buying and printing these books. I am very grateful to bookstores for selling these books. But what books/series from 2019 am I most grateful for? Well, how kind of you to ask. These are and aren't really in any order. I will count down from ten but the top few books will be in order. So, without further ado, here are the books I am most grateful for in 2019:

I wasn't even sure if The Cruel Prince was going to make it on to this list. There has been a lot of drama surrounding this author and I am honestly tired of the book community drama this year. But, after reading The Queen of Nothing, even though I wasn't entirely thrilled with the ending, I decided that I couldn't leave Jude and Cardan off the list. 
Stormrise just BARELY made this list, not because of how much I love it, but because of the fact that I just finished it recently and I almost didn't find out how much I love this book until after Thanksgiving 😱I am thankful for this book because it showed me that I can, in fact, enjoy a dragon story.
Oh man, Three Dark Crowns ended this year and this was one of those series where I kept buying the books as they came out but I promised myself I wouldn't read it until they were ALL out and I somehow succeeded. So, once the last book came out I devoured this series like it was water and I was trapped in a desert. This series spoke to my dark side so much and I LOVED IT.
This should speak for itself but just in case it doesn't, I am thankful for this book because it makes my dark little heart oh so very happy. STAB STAB STAB. I am also thankful for Aurora Rising for showing me that I can read more than two POV's without losing my ever-loving mind but I thought it was unfair for Jay Kristoff to hog 2 spots. 
Remember how at the beginning of this post I said these won't really be in any order except the first few? Well, this is a prime example of WHY. I LOVE THIS SERIES. I would die for this series. Okay, maybe not DIE but you get the idea. So why isn't this higher on the list? Because I can't have six number one books, or can I? All I know is I am devastated that I will never get anything more from my beloved Thomas Cresswell 😱😢
The Vanishing Stair is the second book in the Truly Devious trilogy and this book was fantastic. I will always have a soft spot in my heart for murder mysteries and Maureen Johnson did such a fantastic job on these books. I am sure you will see the last book/this series on next year's list.
It's only fair that the Renegades trilogy is on this list because, well, I read the first 2 books twice this year and the final book, Supernova, came out this month and I devoured that chunky thing in 1 day. Marissa Meyer will always hold a special place in my heart for a few reasons but this series shocked me because, unless it's The Avengers, I really don't like superhero stuff. I will miss this world and these characters but with how the book ended I am hopeful that there will be a spinoff series in the future... PLEASE?!
Now, TECHNICALLY, the Constellation trilogy is my number one series BUT I was not expecting books like The Grace Year or Sorcery of Thorns to come out so it has been deligated to number 3 even though it is just as important to me as 1 and 2. Claudia Gray is my number 1 favorite author. She has helped me through a lot of crap and for that, I am eternally grateful to her. I just hope I can meet her one day and have her sign my 25+ book collection, haha.
Sorcery of Thorns was definitely one of the books that surprised me the most this year. When I am reading I usually picture the story in my head like a movie and this story was a full-blown theatrical performance. I am usually pretty excited when a book is a standalone but this story could go on for fifty books and I would still be reading it.
I LOVE The Grace Year. The author is such an amazing person too so that just adds to it. I have read this book 3 times this year. Once as an ARC, once as a finished copy and once as an audiobook and I will never not love this story. I will definitely be rereading this book yearly from now until the day my books take me from this mortal coil.

Thank you guys for reading through my list. Books have always been something that has helped me get through some of the roughest patches in my life. I even have certain books I will always keep because I bought them on the day when something big happened. For example, my dad had a stroke back in 2015 and the day he went to the hospital my husband took me to buy a copy of Fairest by Marissa Meyer. I am really bad with remembering dates so if I do get a book when something special/bad happened I usually write the date and event on a sticky note and put it in that book. Books will always be apart of my life and because of that, I am so grateful to those who make books possible. What are some books you are grateful for in 2019?

Monday, November 25, 2019

REVIEW: Scared Little Rabbits by A.V. Geiger - 4 stars

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 9:00 AM 0 comments

Title: Scared Little Rabbits
Genre: Young Adult Mystery
Author: A.V. Geiger
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication: December 3rd 2019
Cover Rating: 3/5
Reading Format: Provided ARC
Scared Little Rabbits by A.V. Geiger is the story of Nora. She spent years preparing to apply to the Makers program at the prestigious Winthrop Academy and once she finally got in things couldn't have gone more differently than she had hoped for. Drama, coding, first love, and murder.

This is the first book I have ever read that starts on a cliffhanger. No, not the type you usually hear about when people discuss books, a literal cliffhanger. Well, I guess that isn't entire correct either considering the person hanging off the cliff was no longer there anymore... So we begin this story with a cliff that lost its hanger. 

Nora just arrived at Winthrop Academy to begin her summer program that she has waited years for. This prestigious program produced one of the world's most-used apps called Instalove. It is a combination of Instagram and... let's say Tinder. Nora downloads the app right before she arrives at the program so she is an entirely new user in a place where everyone has been using the app for a long time. But something else for the app is in the making and it's being tested during the duration of her summer program. It is a sort of virtual reality in a pair of glasses that also acts as your cell phone so you can send texts and call people. Nora enters the program with an idea to build something unique but somehow she gets dragged into the production of these glasses and quite possibly first love. All she has to do is fight off that first loves ex-girlfriend with the same name as her but that might prove to be easier than she thought.

This book was very interesting to me because it involved a lot of coding and computer work which I am very fond of. I think if it wasn't for the mental intrigue I would have given the book a little bit of a lower rating considering I spent the entire book yelling at Nora to be brave. I remember texting my friend who read the book a few days before me how much Nora was frustrating me. I understand that that is who she was as a character but something about week women characters just bothers me. By the end of the book, she redeemed herself so that was another saving grace.

When I saw the cover reveal floating around for this book I got so excited. Does that say A.V. Geiger?! Yes, yes it does. HECK YES! I requested this book so fast. You see, I was given the chance to review the author's previous two books and I LOVED THEM so I knew I couldn't pass up the chance to read and review her next book. While I can say that I did not love this book as much as her previous duology I did enjoy it. It was very different from her first book but her writing style and character development were all the same and that is what drew me in from the start.

In the end, this book was a fantastic new addition to the author's works. I cannot wait to see what she comes up with in the future. She will always be an auto-read author for me.

Overall, I gave the book 4/5 stars.

Friday, November 8, 2019

COVER REVEALS: The Deceivers and Scammed by Kristen Simmons #SCAMMED #THEDECEIVERS #GetInOnTheScam

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 10:00 AM 0 comments

The Deceivers(paperback) and Scammed(hardback) BOTH come out on FEBRUARY 4th 2020!


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