Monthly Archives: February 2014

Review: Sleep No More

Sleep No MoreTitle: Sleep No More

Author: Aprilynne Pike

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy, Contemporary

Source: ARC

Reviewer:Emily Bedwell

Summary (From Goodreads): Oracles see the future but are never supposed to interfere. Charlotte learned that the hard way. If she hadn’t tried to change one of her childhood visions, her father would still be alive. Since the accident, Charlotte has suppressed her visions to avoid making the same mistake. But when she receives a premonition of a classmate’s murder, she can no longer ignore her powerful gift.

Then Charlotte meets someone who not only knows her secret but who also has a way for her to stop the killer. He offers to teach her how to manipulate her visions to change the future. But doing so will put Charlotte in the path of the murderer...

My Thoughts:

I love Aprilynne Pike. Seriously. And, I’m not going to lie; this book kind of scared the snot out of me. “Sleep No More” is unlike anything I’ve read from Pike before, and it was brilliant. Charlotte is an Oracle; someone who gets images of the future and has learned to stop them. She changed the future once and it changed everything. She won’t make that mistake ever again. Until she can’t stop the visions and she sees the murder of a classmate, then another. Now, Charlotte has a choice; she can see the visions and try and change the future or she can do nothing, be nothing and sit by knowing that her friends continue to die.

“Sleep No More” is dark, twisting and scary all at the same time. Pike creates complicated characters that are three dimensional and seem like they could be people you interact with every day. This fast-paced page turner kept me on the edge of my seat as Charlotte learned more about her family, her powerful gift, and the consequences and responsibilities of knowing what the future holds.

Final Thoughts:

Five out of five bookmarks. I loved this book.  A little bit Stephen King, a little bit Doctor Who, a little bit dark comedy and romance.

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Review: Hyperbole and a Half

Hyperbole and a HalfTitle: Hyperbole and a Half

Author: Allie Brosh

Genre: Non-Fiction, Autbiography

Source: Amazon

Reviewer:Emily Bedwell

Summary (From Goodreads): This is a book I wrote. Because I wrote it, I had to figure out what to put on the back cover to explain what it is. I tried to write a long, third-person summary that would imply how great the book is and also sound vaguely authoritative–like maybe someone who isn’t me wrote it–but I soon discovered that I’m not sneaky enough to pull it off convincingly. So I decided to just make a list of things that are in the book:

Pictures
Words
Stories about things that happened to me
Stories about things that happened to other people because of me
Eight billion dollars*
Stories about dogs
The secret to eternal happiness*

*These are lies. Perhaps I have underestimated my sneakiness!

My Thoughts:

I loved Allie’s blog and I wanted, so wanted, to love this book. I wanted it to be as funny and smart as the blog, but I just had a hard time getting into it. There were some great moments, mostly stories I had seen on the blog. It is less biography and more just a collection of stories from her blog. It’s fine, and an easy read. It’s hard to review this book because there just isn’t a lot to say. It’s funny and sometimes smart. It’s a look into Allie Brosh’s depression and battle with finding herself again.

Final Thoughts:

Three out of Five bookmarks. It was fine, but not life-changing.

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Review: The Museum of Intangible Things

Intangible ThingsTitle: The Museum of Intangible Things

Author: Wendy Wunder

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary

Source: ARC

Reviewer:Emily Bedwell

Summary from Goodreads: Hannah and Zoe haven’t had much in their lives, but they’ve always had each other. So when Zoe tells Hannah she needs to get out of their down-and-out New Jersey town, they pile into Hannah’s beat-up old Le Mans and head west, putting everything—their deadbeat parents, their disappointing love lives, their inevitable enrollment at community college—behind them.

As they chase storms and make new friends, Zoe tells Hannah she wants more for her. She wants her to live bigger, dream grander, aim higher. And so Zoe begins teaching Hannah all about life’s intangible things, concepts sadly missing from her existence—things like audacity, insouciance, karma, and even happiness.

My Thoughts:

I was not expecting this book. From the back of the cover, it looked like it was going to be a fun, last chance to relax before two girls go to college. And, in some ways, it is. It is also a heart-breaking, tragic story of mental illness, friendship and what it means to love and help the people in your life. “The Museum of Intangible Things” is about Hannah, an average New Jersey girl who wants more from life, and Zoe, who is beautiful, smart and battling some inner mental demons. Something inside Zoe snaps, and she and Hannah run out on their boring lives and chase something bigger.

It’s hard to talk about this book without giving away some things that I think are important to discover as you go through Zoe and Hannah’s story. Emotionally, I went from laughing to crying and back again depending on the chapter and the page. Zoe has to come face-to-face with the darkness inside her while Hannah tries to help her friend and find herself.

Author Wendy Wunder creates a powerful story of what friendship means, how it can define you no matter the age, and what it looks like to be willing to give everything for the friends you love.

My Rating

Four out of Five bookmarks. Beautiful, tragic and expertly written!

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The Scar Boys

Scar BoysTitle: The Scar Boys

Author: Len Vlahos

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary

Source: ARC

Reviewer: Emily Bedwell

Summary from Goodreads: A severely burned teenager. A guitar. Punk rock. The chords of a rock ‘n’ roll road trip in a coming-of-age novel that is a must-read story about finding your place in the world…even if you carry scars inside and out.

In attempting to describe himself in his college application essay–help us to become acquainted with you beyond your courses, grades, and test scores–Harbinger (Harry) Jones goes way beyond the 250-word limit and gives a full account of his life.

My Thoughts:

This is not my typical book. I received the ARC from a friend and thought I’d give it a chance. There were several things I loved about it: the narrator is a flawed, angry, frustrated teen who has had a rough life. He’s been bullied and burned and has very few friends. Through a series of events, he finds a good friend and a love for music.

A band, The Scar Boys, is founded and actually finds some success. Their road to a summer tour felt forced and a little made up, but I was able to give this first time author the benefit of the doubt. Overall, the book was entertaining and a strong debut. Harry Jones is a sweet kid who has been given a hard life. He lived in relative anonymity for years, trying to avoid the bullies and stay out of eyesight of anyone and everyone. Suddenly, he is in a band, and, eventually, leading the band.

“The Scar Boys” is a fun, fast read. I read it in a morning while waiting to visit the doctor! I would recommend it to people who loved books like “Wonder” or movies like “Powder.” If you’re a lover of underdogs and good music, this is the book for you!

My Rating:

Three out of Five bookmarks. A solid, easy read. It probably won’t change your life, but it’s still an entertaining story!

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