Thursday, February 26, 2015

Series Review: Crash - Clash - Crush by Nicole Williams

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments
Title: Crash, Clash and Crush
Author: Nicole Williams
Publisher: HarperCollins
Cover Rating: 3/5

This is one of those books or series where it makes you think “Why did it take me so long to read this?” I couldn't put this book down and pretty much read it in one sitting. This book made me stay up all night into the late morning just to finish it. I’m glad it is a trilogy and not just one book because I really need more of the characters. 

This is one of those stories where you take an innocent girl and she meets, what is known as, the type of guy that isn't good for her and a love story ensues. 

Lucy is about to start a new school because she and her family had to move into their beach house. She meets Jude during one of her last days of summer before school started. Right away you could tell there was a connection between them just by looking at each other. 

Jude is known as the bad boy where they live, but that doesn't stop her from getting to know him and getting close to him. They were getting into the situation where girl meets bad boy, but bad boy wants to change because of said girl. I love these types of stories because it shows you that with the right girl a guy will become a better version of himself for her, all the while making the girl experience what love really is. 

Lucy annoyed me at times because she would turn into a typical female by trusting some other guy over her boyfriend and making assumptions without having all the facts. I wanted so badly to slap her at those moments. She put herself into a bad situation all because she ended up trusting a guy Jude told her to stay away from. If it was me, and a guy told me to very seriously to stay away from a certain guy, then I would. 

Jude is the protective and territorial type when it comes to his girlfriend and whom he loves. I love this in a guy. At times be did become too much because of his anger issues getting in the way, but I loved him from the very beginning. All kinds of bad things were thrown at him, which made it seem like he was a bad guy because of the things he did. It’s one of those times where a good guy does bad things just to survive and do what he needs to do. I can’t wait to see what will happen to them in the next book.

“Caring for someone is scary, because you both know how it feels to lose someone in the span of a heartbeat. But you can’t let fear dictate your life or else you’ll end up like me. Don’t live life hiding behind your past. Live for the moment. When you find someone you want to spend forever with, you don’t let them go, whether forever turns out to be a day or a year or fifty years.”…”Don’t let the fear of losing them keep you from loving them.” –Wyatt

I rate it 5/5  



I love Lucy and Jude. On the outside it may seem like they shouldn't be together, but they should be together for all the right reasons.

Both Lucy and Jude have temper issues, so they fight with each other constantly. Lucy’s anger has gotten worse since she has been with Jude and doesn't know how to calm it like Jude does. This may seem like a bad thing, but they were made for each other in every sense of the word.

Though they constantly fight, they make each other the happiest of people. People fight to the ends of the earth to have a love like the love Lucy and Jude have. When it comes to love, it isn't sweet all the time and that’s what Lucy had to realize.

At times, I wanted to slap some sense into her because again, she made assumptions before knowing the truth and once she had the truth, she didn't believe it. Because of Lucy, she hurt Jude several times with how she acted and how she kept leaving him. Because of Jude’s love for her he always took her back because he couldn't live without her by his side.

With a talk with her mom, Lucy finally came to accept what she had with Jude, no matter how bad it got at times; she couldn't imagine a world with him not being with her. Seeing these two together, at times, you want to yell at them or you laugh and smile because of them.

Their whole relationship is nothing but a very crazy roller coaster that will never end. I can’t get enough of them. They both have issues that they deal with on a daily basis, but they help each other in the best way they can.

Lucy has become the only family that Jude has, while Jude has become the love she needed back into her life after her brother’s death. It may not be perfect, but the things in life that are worth it are never perfect. They will always have to work at what they have, but in the end it will be worth it for the both of them.

This book was much shorter than the first, but I found it to be just as great as the first. I enjoyed seeing what situations, these two were going to be thrown into and what their reactions would be to them.

The ending I found to be absolutely perfect, which will lead to the next chapter in their lives. I can’t wait to see what will happen in it.

“Mom told me that love is like a seed. You've got to plant it to grow. But that’s not all. You need to water it. The sun needs to shine just enough, but not too much. The roots have to take hold,”…”And from there, if it pops its head above the surface, there are about a million things that could kill it, so it takes a whole lot of luck too.” –Danny

I rate this 5/5



I know I have said this a lot, but I really love Lucy and Jude together. I just can't get enough of their love. I’m a hopeless romantic, so you can imagine. 

From the beginning of the trilogy, I noticed similarities between these books and Fifty Shades of Grey. Between how Jude protects Lucy, got rich, and how he has such a temper when it comes to anyone looking at Lucy. There are a few other similarities, but those are the most important. 

With having said that, there are a lot of differences. I loved how this one concluded. I didn't think any of it was rushed at all with it being the last book. 

Time passed fast, but it didn't feel like it because we only received the important details of the lives of Lucy and Jude. The time setting is two years after the second ended. At first, I didn't like that, but I’m glad for it. 

In that time, Lucy and Jude grew. We got to see how much Jude had changed and yet he was still his old self. Not only did Jude change, but so did Lucy. She didn't yell at Jude as much when he would yell or want to do something, such as beat someone up and she was able to stay calm for a lot of it and calm him down as well. It was nice to see how their relationship has grown and them growing with each other. 

In many instances, their relationship was tested with them living apart from each other on either side of the world, but they made it work and I loved seeing it. Jude’s best friend Holly played a bigger part and I’m glad she did. I loved her when we first met her and I’m glad she played a bigger part in Lucy’s life. Even Holly’s little boy LJ played a part. 

I would have liked it more if Lucy’s parents played a bigger role. Throughout the book, she only received one phone call from her dad. I would have liked them to have appeared somewhere. 

So many life changes were happening for Lucy and Jude, it would have been nice to see how they reacted or helped them. I loved the epilogue very much. 

We got to see how everything turned out for the both of them and their family and friends. It was a nice ending with loose ends all tied up. 

In a very short time I devoured this trilogy and has become one of my favorite ones. I will definitely be reading this in the years to come when I need a pick me up.

“Yes, I've missed out on things. But that’s life, Lucy. It’s what I haven’t missed out on that counts in my book. When I look at my family’s faces, I know I wouldn't change a damn thing if I had the choice.” –Sybill

I rate this 5/5 



Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Word of the Week Wednesday[28]

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments


Word of the Week - Litany - Gated - Page 4
Meaning - A series of petitions for use in church services or processions, usually recited by the clergy and responded to in a recurring formula by the people.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Mini Review Monday[31] The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mattieu

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 1 comments

Title: The Truth About Alice
Author: Jennifer Mathieu
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Publication: June 3rd 2014
Cover Rating: 4/5

My initial reaction to finished this book was MEH. I was not impressed and I really didn't have any negative or positive feelings.

The book is about a girl who gets labeled a slut because of rumors that some popular jock started. Big whoop. Like this hasn't happen before?That is ALL the book is about. One girl getting labeled with a scarlet A on her forehead. 

Then you have the four people who are actually telling the story. They are pathetic. They have their own secrets and we find them out throughout the book. Kurt is the only one who isn't completely pathetic.

The book is 199 pages and it took me four days to read it. That right there says something. I wasted 4 days on a book that was nothing special. I feel like the title should be changed to A Day in the Life of a Girl Labeled a Slut By Popular High School Kids.  

Overall, I gave the book 3/5 stars. 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Double Vision Review[3] The Duff by Kody Keplinger

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 1 comments

Title: The Duff
Author: Kody Keplinger
Publisher: Poppy
Publication: September 7th 2010
Cover Rating: 4/5

The Duff is one of those books where I started reading it and said "Oh, this seems pointless." but I kept reading because I wanted something light and something I didn't have to think too much about. I got EXACTLY that with this book. 

To call Bianca cynical is an understatement. She is intelligent and very self aware. She doesn't like social norms yet her best friends are these perfect, preppy girls completely opposite of her.

The book is mainly about friends-with-benefits and honestly I was kinda shocked that Bianca would even think about doing the things she did with Wesley. She seemed sooo much smarter than to go and do something like that. And then she was all like HEY, I'm not a virgin anymore so who the hell cares. Really? Just because you aren't a virgin doesn't mean you have to go full slut. 

I did find that the who family situation was pretty sad. It was a little unbelievable though. I felt so bad for Bianca's dad. But with what I just said, there were plenty of other ways for Bianca to relieve her stress besides humping the school man-whore.

Everything was pretty predictable. I knew the stuff with Toby would happen, why else would he have been made a character? I knew the ending was going to turn out that way. I DIDN'T, however, see Toby doing what he did. That brought tears to my eyes. 

There was a lesson in the book though. And a very beautiful love story if you look past the friends-with-benefits thing. Bianca finally got to fell what it was like to have a guy truly care and Wesley learned to not be a man-whore. They both changed each other for the better. 

At the beginning of the book I would have said 2-3 stars. But by the end I decided that it was worth more because it kept me out of a reading slump and it really did make me pretty emotional at times. I teared up a few times so that has to be worth something.

Overall, I gave the book 5/5 stars.




I have been wanting to read this book for a while. I have heard nothing but great things and that everyone loved this. I never read what it was about and I’m glad I didn't. 

When I saw a preview for the movie I had to get and read this right away so I can see the movie. 

At first, I didn't know what to think. I had no thoughts. Even as I continued to read I didn't write any notes down like I usually do. With having said that with having finished the book I do have thoughts. I went into the book blind and was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was a romance. I haven’t read a romance like this before and I really enjoyed it. It was a very twisted kind of romance and that made me love it even more. 

There is Bianca, who has been having family issues and there is also the “man-slut” Wesley who also has been having family issues. Bianca needed a distraction and Wesley was her ticket. Through all she was doing with Wesley she wasn't as present with her friends and family. This was the only problem I had with the book. 

Bianca needed to take action with her dad and say something. She should not have let what he was doing to keep on going the way it was going until Wesley had to witness it and do something about it. She also shouldn't have kept on blowing off her best friends. She should have told them what was going on from the get go since they are her best friends instead of lying and blowing them off. It’s what friends are for. 

Though I didn't like how she avoided the truth about what was going on between her and Wesley I liked how everything turned out in the end. Because of Bianca, Wesley wised up and changed. He knew what he wanted and he even took her advice. They make jabs at each other, but it’s what works for them. They make things in their life better for each other by being with each other. It makes things for them seem not so bad. As well as they both have taught each other a lesson and I liked seeing that. 

This book is not your typical teenage romance and I really enjoyed that. I had a few moments where I said ‘Finally someone has said that.” The way this was written made me believe that this could actually happen. So many times when I read a romance novel, I get so frustrated at the characters for not saying what is on their minds, but that is not the case with this one. I highly recommend this to anyone who loves to read. 

“No matter where you go or what you do to distract yourself, reality catches up with you eventually.” -Gina

I rate this 5/5

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Word of the Week Wednesday[27]

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments


Word of the Week - Bedraggled - Gated - Page 112
Meaning - Dirty and disheveled. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Mini Review Monday[30] Stop Pretending: What Happened When My Big Sister Went Crazy by Sonya Sones

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 2 comments

Title: Stop Pretending
Author: Sonya Sones 
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication: April 25th 2006
Cover Rating: 3/5

Sonya Sones is one of my favorite authors. She writes in verse and her books are always powerful and pack one hell of a punch. This was the only book by her that I hadn't read and I was so glad to finally have found it!

This book is about an older sister who going insane and the repercussions it has on the little sister. It is told through the eyes of the little sister. 

I would love to see another book told through the eyes of the older sister. It would definitely bring everything together a little bit better.

Cookie has to deal with some much. This book shows how mental health effects more than just the person who has the problems. Cookie lost friends, who apparently weren't that greats of friends to begin with if they left because of her sister being sick. She was made fun of and her parents didn't pay much attention to her.

By the end of the book things were starting to return to some semblance of normality. Cookie had friends and her parents were starting to recover.

I really liked this book. It might be a work of fiction but I feel this is exactly how life is for the loved ones of someone who is suffering from mental health issues. I know personally that when I have panic attacks it effects my entire household. 

Overall, I gave the book 5/5 stars.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Author Spotlight: The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 11:00 AM 0 comments






Kristen Simmons is the author of the ARTICLE 5 series and THE GLASS ARROW (Tor Teen). She loves her family, Jazzercise, and chocolate cupcakes. She currently lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.

For more updates on Kristen and her writing, visit http://www.kristensimmonsbooks.com or http://www.facebook.com/author.kristensimmons

Title: The Glass Arrow

Author: Kristen Simmons
Publisher: TOR Teen
Publication: February 10th 2015
Cover Rating: 5/5

The subject matter of this book is something that you have to be sure you are ready to read. I have a feeling that the author is going to get some backlash from people who didn't read the synopsis and understand just what the book holds inside. So READER BEWARE.



I really enjoyed this book. I am a HUGE fan of Kristen Simmons Article 5 series so of course I just had to get my hands on this book ASAP. I was not disappointed and I really loved seeing how the author adapted to writing fantasy. So, with that said, I am going to attempt to do a review that has no spoilers. But it will be hard because I kind of just want to gush about this book.

First, the synopsis of the book states, "The Handmaid’s Tale meets Blood Red Road in Glass Arrow, the story of Aya, who lives with a small group of women on the run from the men who hunt them, men who want to auction off breeding rights to the highest bidder.", and I can honestly say that I have tried to read Blood Red Road and I liked The Glass Arrow significantly more. I read The Handmaid's Tale back in high school and I can definitely see the similarities. Regardless of the synopsis, Kristen Simmons has woven an extremely thrilling story that I could see actually happening in the future.

Aya, "Clover", is the type of women a lot of us wish we were. She is strong, head-strong, and very smart. She doesn't want to be controlled by any man and that is her biggest problem considering the world she lives in makes that difficult. 

Then we have The Governess. Which would drive any feminist woman to commit murder. This woman needs to be slapped a few hundred times and then hung by her toe nails. She is A WOMAN and what she does to these young women is HORRIBLE. I could understand if it was a GUY running the operation but she is literally selling her own kind. How sick are you? 

Now, on to the world building and romance. I loved the world-building. I could picture everything and I thoroughly enjoy when I can imagine a book like a movie running through my head. The romance was nice. After first meeting Aya I didn't think there was going to be much of a romance in this book but I was wrong. It wasn't insta-love or anything like that. It was actually pretty believable for the situation Aya and Kiran were in. 

Kiran might be "mute" but he sure has a lot to say and he is very intelligent for being just a Driver. The way he interacts with Aya has a very loving, precious feeling to it. They go through Hell and back and it actually takes time for them to start falling for each other. I loved the slow bleed of the romance between them and it made the entire book feel a lot more realistic.

There is no other book to compare this to. I have seen many people trying to say that its like Wither, Delirium and other "love" type dystopian books and I fail to see the comparison. This book is a genre all its own. It feels fantasy, dystopian and historical. I find that people who try and compare books to other books are just being stupid. No EVERYTHING in this world needs to be compared to something else. 

The ending is a cliffhanger of sorts. It left me feeling filled but still needing more. So I am not angry with the ending but I wouldn't mind reading more. The book is a standalone and the author didn't over do anything. You know the book will end and nothing will come after it and normally that leaves me feeling kind of empty but Kristen tied the book up very neatly.

Overall, I gave the book 5/5 stars.




When I read what this was about I was leery because the subject matter is a very touchy subject with me.  

Now with having said that, I think Kristen Simmons did a fantastic job writing about this topic because all I wanted to do was keep reading instead of wanting to stop. 

Right in the beginning a lot of things happen and we are thrown into how Aya's world works. It takes a bit to get into, but once you do, it’s a good ride. Some parts, because of the subject matter, I didn't like them very much, but reading them didn't push me away. I just wanted to find out what was going to happen next. 

Aya is a very strong female character. She does what she needs to do, she picks fights if it will work in her favor and will do anything to protect her family. I haven’t read a character like her in a while and because of how she is, I liked her right away. Through Aya we get to see what the world does to girls and woman. They get captured to be sold to rich men to have boy offspring. Aya hates this and tries her best to sabotage it all for herself. 

Along the way she meets and befriends a wolf and what is known as a Driver. Drivers are born mute. She tells the Driver, that she names Kiran, all kinds of stories about her family that she is trying to get back to. Through a lot of planning and hurt Kiran helps her escape. 

During the ride back to her family, we get a curve-ball thrown at us that I did not see coming, but I loved it because it really added to the story and the characters. I loved the connection that Aya and Kiran had, it made me happy whenever they were together. I wish they had more time to be alone with each other to develop their relationship, but I’m happy with what we got from them. 

In the end, I think there could have been an epilogue seeing how everyone is after everything Aya had to go through to make sure they all stay safe, but I’m happy with how it ended. This isn't one of those books where the main character tries to change how their world is, but a story of her doing everything she can to make sure her family stays safe and alive, away from all the horrors of their society. 

This was my first book that I have read by Kristen Simmons and I have to say that I’m impressed. 

I rate this a 4.5 because of me as a person when it comes to the subject matter, not anything to do with the author.

“I remember how she told me that this was the way of things. That to have life there must be death. To have joy there must be sadness. And that I must not be angry with Mother Hawk because of it.” -Aya



1) Where did the inspiration for The Glass Arrow come from?

I had read a story on the news of places in rural China where the
population of women had decreased so much that men were going to
neighboring villages to find mates. That idea grew in my mind, and I
started thinking of what it would be like if a hunting party started
tracking down women in hiding. This concept became the opening of my
new book.


2) Which story did you enjoy writing the most? Article 5 or The Glass Arrow?

I enjoyed writing them both in different ways. Article 5 was such a
rush - it was my first book that I sold, that I worked with an editor
and an agent on. But in Glass Arrow I got to explore a lot of issues
that are very important to me, such as the conceptualization of women
in our society. Also, I got to write a very fierce female lead, which
was really a lot of fun.

3) How would you describe The Glass Arrow to someone who might buy your book?

This is a story about a society where women are endangered, and one
girl is caught in the wild and sold at auction for breeding purposes.

4) Have you always wanted to be an author? If not, what did you want to be?

I have always wanted to be a writer. I also love helping people
though, and I actually went to school to be a social worker, and later
a mental health therapist. Mental health issues are still very
important to me, and often work their way into my stories.


5) If you could live anywhere in the world, anyway you want to, where
would you live and what would you do with your life?

I would have a little cabin in the mountains, someone to make me hot
chocolate, and everything else would be exactly as it is now. I love
writing books!

6) Are you currently, or planning on, working on any new books?

Yes! My next book comes out next year and is called Metaltown. It
involves child sweatshop workers joining together and fighting back
against their oppressive boss.

7) If you had to choose between the world in Article 5 and the world
in The Glass Arrow to live in which one would you pick?

Ha! Neither! I would have to be a lot tougher to survive both!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

REVIEW: I Was Here by Gayle Forman

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments
Title: I Was Here
Author: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Viking
Publication: January 27th 2015
Cover Rating: 4/5


I really loved this book. The story is very emotional and the subject matter is something a lot of people have a hard time with. But the book was tastefully written. 

Cody is kind of annoying to be perfectly honest. I know her best friend is gone but Cody acts like a spoiled brat. "Why didn't Meg tell me?" "Meg left me out of her life." "There are so many things I should have known." It's like everything is about Cody and that isn't how it should be. 

Cody also isn't very helpful towards the Garcia's after Meg dies. She could have had dinner with them and helped out and still visited. But nooo, she had to turn into this self hating whack job. She really does have a problem with thinking about people other than herself.

The Garcia's ask Cody to do them a favor and then everything turns into some sort of mision to avenge Meg's death. She tried to put the blame on so many people throughout the book but it was really nobodies fault. 

The romance was definitely predictable but that was the only thing I found myself predicting. You just knew something would happen between Ben and Cody. It had to happen. That is just how these things work out.

Almost every character in the book was affected by Meg's suicide. People who weren't even that close to her felt responsible in some way. Most because they didn't see any signs and didn't reach out to help her. But really there was nothing they could have done because Meg didn't really show any signs besides sleeping a lot.

The book showed that life isn't over after someone commits suicide. People ache for the loss of a loved one and some people even go out and try to solve all the problems in the world. Suicide causes people to scatter and lose control over themselves. Especially when it was unexpected and so many things were hidden when you think you know someone well. Cody was blindsided by Meg's death and that is what caused Cody's downward spiral. If Meg's parents wouldn't have hidden stuff from Cody I think the outcome might have been different but this book gives off a "everything happens for a reason" feel.

This was a very short book so there isn't much I can write without spoiling it. But this book had a very large impact on me. 

Overall, I gave the book 5/5 stars.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Word of the Week Wednesday[26]

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments


Word of the Week - Ingratiating - Struck - Page 237
Meaning - Intended to gain someones favor or approval. 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

REVIEW: The Retribution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments
Title: The Retribution of Mara Dyer
Author: Michelle Hodkin
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication: November 4th 2014
Cover Rating: 4/5
I feel like The Retribution of Mara Dyer was rushed. There could have been two books made out of this one and they both could have been 400+ pages. Everything just seemed really pushed out and thrown together and that kind of made the book hard to read. And the fact that this book took over a year to come out makes it even more unacceptable to me.

After the second book the series took a completely different turn. I didn't like the turn very much but I was wondering where the series was going after the second book. 

There were not a lot of answers given. Just a lot of information thrown at me and even more questions piling up. Was it VooDoo? Some other ancient Indian religion? WHAT WAS IT?

Mara become someone I really didn't like as the book progressed. She turned into a cold, murderous villain. I understand she was upset and wanted to find Noah but trying to kill those boys because they were being assholes wasn't enough to warrant murder in my book. The rapist truck driver guy was warranted and I also believe that Stella should have been a little more understanding of Mara. They were ALL "special" but Stella ran away at first chance she could find an excuse. She is also one of the unanswered questions. 

Not only are we thrown into flashbacks of Mara's grandmother but towards the end of the book we are given duel POV's between Noah and Mara along with the flashbacks. 

The intimate scene at the end was a little too over played and dramatic. I know they waited almost three entire books to consummate their obsession with each other but it was back and forth POV's that contained four paragraphs. 

I still stand my ground when I say I love Noah Shaw and the first two books were great. But as stated above I truly feel like the book was rushed. The ending was abrupt and we don't really get a whole hell of a lot of answers. And after the Twilight Zone beginning to the book I kind of expected a lot more than what was given to me.

I want to know what happens with Mara's family. What about Noah's dad? Was there a big cover up for Dr. Kells and all the deaths of the kids? I just want to scream because I have NO answers to some of the biggest questions.

Overall, I gave the book a 4/5 stars.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Word of the Week Wednesday[25]

Posted by Jenn Christensen at 1:00 PM 0 comments


Word of the Week - Penitent - Struck - Page 210
Meaning - Feeling or showing sorrow and regret because you have done something wrong.

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