4 stars

We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver

We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel ShriverWe Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
Genre: Contemporary
Release Date: 3rd July 2006
Publisher: Serpent's Tail
Source: Bought
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Eva never really wanted to be a mother; certainly not of the boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students, a cafeteria worker and a teacher who tried to befriend him. Now, two years later, it is time for her to come to terms with Kevin's horrific rampage in a series of startlingly direct correspondences with her estranged husband. Uneasy with the sacrifices of motherhood, Eva fears that her dislike for her own son may be responsible for driving him so drastically off the rails.

This was the most eerie freakin’ book, you guys. As soon as I finished it I had to sit down and go over what I had just read. The entire thing gave me chills. I’m pretty sure it gave me weird dreams.

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The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan MatsonThe Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson
Genre: Contemporary
Release Date: 3rd May 2016
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Andie had it all planned out.

When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future.

Important internship? Check.

Amazing friends? Check.

Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks)

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life.

Because here’s the thing - if everything's planned out, you can never find the unexpected.

And where’s the fun in that?

Morgan Matson slayed again <3 She is SUCH a good author that my words are not going to be enough to do her and her books justice. I fell in love with her writing after reading Second Chance Summer, and Since You’ve Been Gone cemented my feelings for her and her books. The Unexpected Everything wasn’t as good as Since You’ve Been Gone, which was about Emily, someone who I connected to on all sorts of levels, but it was still pretty awesome.

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Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

Salt to the Sea by Ruta SepetysSalt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
Genre: Historical
Release Date: 2nd February 2016
Source: Bought
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Winter, 1945. Four teenagers. Four secrets.

Each one born of a different homeland; each one hunted, and haunted, by tragedy, lies…and war.

As thousands of desperate refugees flock to the coast in the midst of a Soviet advance, four paths converge, vying for passage aboard the Wilhelm Gustloff, a ship that promises safety and freedom.

Yet not all promises can be kept.

Inspired by the single greatest tragedy in maritime history, bestselling and award-winning author Ruta Sepetys (Between Shades of Gray) lifts the veil on a shockingly little-known casualty of World War II. An illuminating and life-affirming tale of heart and hope.

Salt to the Sea was one of my most anticipated releases of the year, and it certainly didn’t disappoint. Ruta Sepetys has completely delivered three times in a row now, meaning that her spot on my auto-buy authors list is well deserved. Her writing style is captivating and contains the perfect blend of description and emotion, which then toys with my emotions and causes me to become so attached to her stories that I want to hit people in the face with her books. In a loving way, of course.

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Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

Glass Sword by Victoria AveyardGlass Sword by Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen #2
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 9th February 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

I requested Glass Sword right after finishing Red Queen because the book was just THAT GOOD. I couldn’t wait. And I absolutely flew through Glass Sword as well because it certainly didn’t disappoint.

I’ll start with the negatives first because I like to get those out of the way. And, really, there’s only one major point that I want to bring up. Cal and Mare is obviously a relationship that has been building up since Red Queen, and in Glass Sword it made a bit more progress. I was okay with that. I don’t OTP them, but they’ll do as a ship. But what I didn’t like was the fact that Mare kept repeating the fact that Cal was oh-so-bad for her and she “can’t let him go”. She said this so many times, and it was annoyingly redundant and repetitive. I was unimpressed. Like, I ship it, but you’re in the middle of a war and there’s no need to keep telling me what you should do but can’t at the most inopportune moments.

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Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Red Queen by Victoria AveyardRed Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen #1
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 10th February 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart ...

I had put off reading Red Queen for over a year. In the beginning, it’s just because I forgot about it, and then the mixed reviews started rolling in and no matter how hard I tried to avoid them, I still caught a glimpse of people’s thoughts or star ratings. I honestly wasn’t going to pick this up any time soon, until Joan asked if anyone wanted to buddy read it with her. I jumped at the chance because I needed motivation, and 48 hours after the buddy read started, here we are.

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