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Tag Archives: realistic fiction

Breathe, Annie, Breathe | Book Review

So relatable for me that I read it in one sitting!

Breathe, Annie, Breathe by Miranda Kenneally

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Rating: 4/5 stars Read the rest of this entry

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Love and Other Unknown Variables | Book Review

A shot in the heart with intense and unrelenting feels.

Love and Other Unknown Variables by Shannon Lee Alexander

20757521 Read the rest of this entry

Say What You Will | Review

 

Heartbreaking and enlightening novel.

Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern

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Published June 3rd 2014 by HarperTeen

Pages: 343

Format:Hardcover

Source: Purchased

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Buy it from Amazon or Barnes and Noble.


Summary from Goodreads:

John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars meets Rainbow Rowell’s Eleanor & Park in this beautifully written, incredibly honest, and emotionally poignant novel. Cammie McGovern’s insightful young adult debut is a heartfelt and heartbreaking story about how we can all feel lost until we find someone who loves us because of our faults, not in spite of them.

Born with cerebral palsy, Amy can’t walk without a walker, talk without a voice box, or even fully control her facial expressions. Plagued by obsessive-compulsive disorder, Matthew is consumed with repeated thoughts, neurotic rituals, and crippling fear. Both in desperate need of someone to help them reach out to the world, Amy and Matthew are more alike than either ever realized.

When Amy decides to hire student aides to help her in her senior year at Coral Hills High School, these two teens are thrust into each other’s lives. As they begin to spend time with each other, what started as a blossoming friendship eventually grows into something neither expected.


 

If one more book is compared to The Fault in Our Stars… (or The Hunger Games, for that matter)

I know every author wants to be John Green because he’s worth five million dollars at this point. But, just because a book is a teen romance, that does not mean it is The Fault in Our Stars. Also, if a book is dystopian, it is not automatically like The Hunger Games.

Okay?

NOT OKAY.

Now that we got through that, Say What You Will was a very different and enlightening read.

It follows Matthew and Amy as they deal with their OCD and cerebral palsy, respectively.

Amy has always been different. She cannot talk without a computer and she can hardly walk. It is her senior year of high school and Amy has just realized that she does not have any real friends. She decides to change that. Normally she has adults help her around but she decides to have different students help her. Matthew is one of them.

Matthew was just a normal kid but after the stress of his parents’ divorce a few years ago he started to do things. Things like washing his hands to his elbows exactly twelve times a day. Things like tapping every locker as he passed. Matthew has OCD. When he hears that Amy wants him to help her this year. he decides, what the heck, sure.

Amy was a really interesting character to read about because she was brilliant but she couldn’t even talk. She was really sweet with Matthew when she tried to help him conquer his OCD. Amy went about a lot of things wrong, though. She made many bad decisions regarding Matthew and also regarding her life. I felt bad for her because of her disease, but I forgot about it by the end. She just made many bad decisions.

I loved getting an insight into what cerebral palsy is. I had an idea, but I have never really known. It was kind of like Amy was just trapped in this incompetent body with an overcompensating mind. I know if I ever see anyone with cerebral palsy now, I will do my best to treat them no different than anyone else.

Matthew was an interesting character as well. he seems to be the opposite of Amy. He has a perfect body with an imperfect mind. A lot of the time, I felt worse for Matthew than I did for Amy. He couldn’t control his impulses and it cost him friends and a feeling of safety. I will definitely stop making jokes like, “Oh, I’m so OCD,” because it is a very serious disease.

The relationship was a bit lacking. You knew who you wanted to get together but things just kept popping up. Well, big problems. Huge problems. Amy and Matthew were very sweet, but their situations just didn’t mesh well a lot of the time.

There was a big part at the end of the book that was the main focus of the plot. It was something that made me go, “Oh, come on. Really?! REALLY?!”

It seemed kind of unnecessary (until it became the main plot). I just didn’t like the subject and I felt like it was pulling away from where the real focus should have been.

For those reasons, I give this book 3.5/5 starsIt wasn’t a bad book. It just wasn’t amazing. I would recommend this book for ages 14+ because of some mature content and older themes.

I loved learning about the two diseases. It really opened my eyes. I applaud you, Cammie, for bringing awareness to these two diseases.

Read this book if you’re looking for one you’ll read fast. Also, if diseases such as cerebral palsy and OCD interest you, you need to read this book.

Have you read any other books about mental or physical disorders? Tell me in the comments.

Your favorite fangirl,

Sarah!

Romans 5:8 “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Of Scars and Stardust | Review

Most “OMIGOSH WHAT JUST HAPPENED” ending EVER!

Of Scars and Stardust by Andrea Hannah

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Expected publication: October 8th 2014 by Flux.

Pages: 336

Source: eARC from Netgalley

Format: eBook

Preorder it from Amazon or Barnes and Noble.


After her little sister mysteriously vanishes, seventeen-year-old Claire Graham has a choice to make: stay snug in her little corner of Manhattan with her dropout boyfriend, or go back to Ohio to face the hometown tragedy she’s been dying to leave behind.

But the memories of that night still haunt her in the city, and as hard as she tries to forget what her psychiatrist calls her “delusions,” Claire can’t seem to escape the wolf’s eyes or the blood-speckled snow. Delusion or reality, Claire knows she has to hold true to the most important promise she’s ever made: to keep Ella safe. She must return to her sleepy hometown in order to find Ella and keep her hallucinations at bay before they strike again. But time is quickly running out, and as Ella’s trail grows fainter, the wolves are becoming startlingly real.

Now Claire must deal with her attraction to Grant, the soft-spoken boy from her past that may hold the secret to solving her sister’s disappearance, while following the clues that Ella left for only her to find. Through a series of cryptic diary entries, Claire must unlock the keys to Ella’s past—and her own—in order to stop another tragedy in the making, while realizing that not all things that are lost are meant to be found.


 

The thing that first attracted me to this book was the cover! It is beautiful! If a book has a bad cover, I don’t want to read it. I hate books with faces on the cover. I want to imagine what the character looks like, and this contaminates my imagination. I LOVE Stephanie Perkins but I hate her old covers!

annalolaThese make me want to throw up. (But read the books anyway because they’re SO CUTE!) OFF TRACK!

Of Scars and Stardust was very different. Having an unreliable narrator is always interesting but tough. We Were Liars and The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer both had unreliable narrators. It is different to have to both focus on the plot and decide wether or not the narrator is crazy.

Read the rest of this entry

How to Save a Life (the book, not the song) | Review

Heartbreakingly beautiful novel that must be read.

How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr

Unknown

Published October 18th 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

Pages: 341

Source: Purchased

Format: Paperback


Summary from Goodreads:

Jill MacSweeney just wishes everything could go back to normal. But ever since her dad died, she’s been isolating herself from her boyfriend, her best friends—everyone who wants to support her. And when her mom decides to adopt a baby, it feels like she’s somehow trying to replace a lost family member with a new one.

 

Mandy Kalinowski understands what it’s like to grow up unwanted—to be raised by a mother who never intended to have a child. So when Mandy becomes pregnant, one thing she’s sure of is that she wants a better life for her baby. It’s harder to be sure of herself. Will she ever find someone to care for her, too?

As their worlds change around them, Jill and Mandy must learn to both let go and hold on, and that nothing is as easy—or as difficult—as it seems.


Okay, I don’t even remember when I bought this book but it has been on my TBR (to be read) shelf. I randomly grabbed it before my family and I went on a trip and that was a very smart decision.

I don’t know what I was expecting from this book. I didn’t reread the summary when I picked it up again so I didn’t know what to expect. The first thing I noticed was that the book was based in Denver, Colorado and my family is vacationing in Colorado so I was basically like

This book is in dual point of view, which was done perfectly. Jill’s father died ten months ago and she was very close to her father so she is greatly distressed by his death. She pushes everyone away; her mother, boyfriend, and friends. Jill is definitely not coping well, and her mother, Robin, copes in a very different way. Read the rest of this entry

The Rules for Disappearing | Review

Quick and mysterious read.

The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston

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Published May 14th 2013 by Disney-Hyperion

Pages: 320

Source: Purchased

Format: Paperback

Buy it at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.


Summary from Goodreads:

She’s been six different people in six different places: Madeline in Ohio, Isabelle in Missouri, Olivia in Kentucky . . . But now that she’s been transplanted to rural Louisiana, she has decided that this fake identity will be her last.

Witness Protection has taken nearly everything from her. But for now, they’ve given her a new name, Megan Rose Jones, and a horrible hair color. For the past eight months, Meg has begged her father to answer one question: What on earth did he do – or see – that landed them in this god-awful mess? Meg has just about had it with all the Suits’ rules — and her dad’s silence. If he won’t help, it’s time she got some answers for herself.

But Meg isn’t counting on Ethan Landry, an adorable Louisiana farm boy who’s too smart for his own good. He knows Meg is hiding something big. And it just might get both of them killed. As they embark on a perilous journey to free her family once and for all, Meg discovers that there’s only one rule that really matters — survival.


First off, sorry for the quick hiatus! I was at Camp Cedar Cliff (which is an amazingly awesome camp) and I couldn’t have any electronics! Gasp!

Anyway, I read The Rules for Disappearing during my free time at camp and it was definitely a page turner. It was also IN THE SOUTH! Hooray!

The book follows Meg as she and her family are thrust into the witness protection program. Meg is at her sixth placement in rural Louisiana and she has firmly decided that she will not associate with anyone or make any friends because it is too hard to leave them behind. Read the rest of this entry

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