Twice as Perfect by Louisa Onomé | ARC Review

A Young Adult novel by Louisa Onomé, Twice As Perfect follows a Nigerian Canadian girl dealing with an estranged older brother, helping her cousin plan a huge Nigerian wedding, and pressure from her parents about her future.

The only things worth doing are those that will lead to success.

For seventeen-year-old Adanna Nkwachi, life is all about duty: to school and the debate team, to her Nigerian parents, and even to her cousin Genny as Ada helps prepare Genny’s wedding to Afrobeats superstar Skeleboy (“Skeleboy me, Skeleboy this money, everything na Skeleboy…that Skeleboy!”). Because ever since her older brother, Sam, had a fight with their parents a few years ago and disappeared, somebody has to fill the void he left behind. Ada may never know what caused Sam to leave home, but the one thing she’s certain of is that it’s on her to make sure her parents’ sacrifices aren’t in vain.

One day, chance brings the siblings back together. Although she fears how their parents will react if they find out she and Sam are back in touch, Ada’s determined to get answers about the night Sam left—Sam, who was supposed to be an engineer but is now, what, a poet? The more she learns about Sam’s poetry, the more Ada begins to wonder if maybe her own happiness is just as important as doing what’s expected of her. Amid parental pressure, anxiety over the debate competition, a complicated love life, and the Nigerian wedding-to-end-all-weddings, can Ada learn, just this once, to put herself first?

Rating: 3 out of 5.


Seventeen year old Adanna Nkwachi has had her future planned since she entered high school: get into law school to become lawyer–it’s what she’s good at. Now in her senior year of high school, with everything set for herself and a goal in mind, nothing will sway her decision… that is until she discovers that her long-lost brother who she’d been told had run away from home is performing in town at a poetry show.

As Ada learns more from everything her brother’s been doing and grapples with some truths, she’ll have to decide if becoming a lawyer is truly what she wants, or if it’s her parents wishes making her want it.

This was a pretty decent read! Although I mainly wanted to get it over with because I was bored, the story itself was interesting.

I do really like the message it was sending, and lots of issues here were very much a mood. I think I may have gone through an existential crisis or two.

I found myself understanding how Ada was feeling and I’m really glad with the decision she made about her love life, because otherwise I would’ve been annoyed💀 I must admit though, Ada as well as all the other side characters… I didn’t really feel much towards them, they were just there as characters. minus tayo because my god the hatred i had towards this shallow guy I will say though that the poetry aspects in this book were pretty neat!

Overall, other than being bored for majority of the book and the ending being a bit underwhelming, this was a pretty alright story.


Thank you Harper Collins CA for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

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lia carstairs

Lulu and Milagro’s Search for Clarity by Angela Velez | ARC Review

Booksmart meets Never Have I Ever in this Latinx road trip adventure—a big-hearted, voice-driven YA about two sisters who couldn’t be more different, but become begrudging partners on their school’s cross-country college trip—from debut author Angela Velez.

Overachiever Luz “Lulu” Zavala has straight As, perfect attendance, and a solid ten-year plan. First up: nail her interview for a dream internship at Stanford, the last stop on her school’s cross-country college road trip. The only flaw in her plan is Clara, her oldest sister, who went off to college and sparked a massive fight with their overprotective Peruvian mom, who is now convinced that out-of-state-college will destroy their family. If Lulu can’t fix whatever went wrong between them, the whole trip—and her future—will be a waste.

Middle sister Milagro wants nothing to do with college, or a nerdy class field trip. Then a spot opens up on the trip just as her own Spring Break plans (Operation: Lose Your Virginity) are thwarted, and she hops on the bus with her glittery lipsticks, more concerned about getting back at her ex than she is about schools or any family drama. But the trip opens her eyes about possibilities she’d never imagined for herself. Maybe she is more than the boy-crazy girl everyone seems to think she is.

On a journey from Baltimore all the way to San Francisco, Lulu and Milagro will become begrudging partners as they unpack weighty family expectations, uncover Clara’s secrets, and maybe even discover the true meaning of sisterhood.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

This was actually pretty okay, like not bad but not good either. I wasn’t really attached to the characters though and the plot was alright but I got bored during some scenes. I don’t have really much to say, so I’ll put all my thoughts of the book in point form.

➼ I definitely loved the diversity !! And it was interesting to see each of the sisters’ journey they went through.

➼ The sibling dynamic was well done and very realistic, I could definitely understand the feelings Lulu had.

➼ Lulu and Milagro had very distinct personalities and you can really see just how different the two are — but also the ways they could actually be really similar in some ways.

➼ The side characters were also really underdeveloped and either bland or the stereotypical mean girls.

➼ The ending was definitely believable in my eyes and it was nicely wrapped up in a way that left the reader wondering what would happen next but at the same time allow for us to imagine how everything would turn out for the characters!

Overall, I think for anyone who generally enjoys reading contemporaries and teens who (especially ones with siblings) want to feel like they can relate to characters that you’d enjoy it!!

_

Thank you Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

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lia carstairs

Where the Rhythm Takes You by Sarah Dass | ARC Review

Seventeen-year-old Reyna has spent most of her life at her family’s gorgeous seaside resort in Tobago, the Plumeria. But what once seemed like paradise is starting to feel more like purgatory. It’s been two years since Reyna’s mother passed away, two years since Aiden – her childhood best friend, first kiss, first love, first everything – left the island to pursue his music dreams. Reyna’s friends are all planning their futures and heading abroad. Even Daddy seems to want to move on, leaving her to try to keep the Plumeria running.

And that’s when Aiden comes roaring back into her life – as a VIP guest at the resort.

Aiden is now one-third of DJ Bacchanal – the latest, hottest music group on the scene. While Reyna has stayed exactly where he left her, Aiden has returned to Tobago with his Grammy-nominated band and two gorgeous LA socialites. And he may (or may not be) dating one of them…

Inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion, Where the Rhythm Takes You is a romantic, mesmerizing novel of first love and second chances.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

I’m having really bad luck lately disliking the mcs and love interests in contemporaries :/


But overall, it was a solid story with a really great message—to do what you want and not what other want/expect of you. Live your own life, not the life of others. Do what make you happy or you might regret it for the rest of your life.

“It had my heart, even when my dreams were somewhere else.”

Since she was a kid, all Reyna has known is life at the family hotel and she plans to continue working there for the rest of her life after the unfortunate death of her mother. Reyna feels as if there’s no other option for her except to run the hotel and tells herself she’s okay with it… until one day, the arrival of Aiden, her first love—now a famous singer—changes everything Reyna once thought and believed in.

Coming into this, it’s clear that an incident occurred between Aiden and Reyna in the past, and the mystery surrounding what happened two years ago had me really curious. Those chapters that were set in the past really gave more info on their relationship and how it grew between the two until it all fell apart. I actually found those chapters much more interesting than the present ones.

Reyna annoyed me a lot throughout the novel with the way she acted, especially in the beginning of the book, but overtime I grew to understand her more and the actions she took. However, it still wasn’t enough for me to like her unfortunately.

Now the romance was… not my favourite. So the glimpses in the past about Reyna and Aiden were nice in showing how their bond developed and all but I feel like it wasn’t really enough?? Like in the present chapters, the relationship between Reyna and Aiden was so lackluster and bland. They barely interacted with each other throughout the novel and when they did it was so awkward due to their past. I just really couldn’t love, better yet like, the romance between the two since it felt like nothing to me.

It felt so lacking and plain. Yeah, they were childhood best friends who fell in love with each other until an incident in which they finally see each other again two years later but I mean?? Where’s the angst and tension?? idk everything just felt dull to me. I just can’t enjoy the romance when it didn’t even feel real at all.

I’d honestly say Fish yes, you read that right and Reyna had more chemistry then Reyna and Aiden. At least they actually had noteworthy interactions and some actual spark between the two with the flirty and funny scenes. Aiden was just that one guy who was brooding in the background until all of a sudden everything magically changes and he starts acting nicer to Reyna— umm yeah…

I do like how this was set in the Caribbean. Too often do novels take place in North America specifically the US so this was a nice change in scenery. It did take a little while getting used to some of the dialect used in the book, but it was definitely interesting.

Overall, this had a pretty nice take on second chances and doing what you feel passionate about. The romance could’ve been much better in my opinion and the story dragged on a lot, which had me pushing myself to get through it. Props for being a pretty quick read though!

Eternally thankful to Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Made in Korea by Sarah Suk | ARC Review

We’re just going to ignore that this ARC review is totally not late or anything and that it came out almost a month ago whoops

Frankly in Love meets Shark Tank in this feel-good romantic comedy about two entrepreneurial Korean American teens who butt heads—and maybe fall in love—while running competing Korean beauty businesses at their high school.

There’s nothing Valerie Kwon loves more than making a good sale. Together with her cousin Charlie, they run V&C K-BEAUTY, their school’s most successful student-run enterprise. With each sale, Valerie gets closer to taking her beloved and adventurous halmeoni to her dream city, Paris.

Enter the new kid in class, Wes Jung, who is determined to pursue music after graduation despite his parents’ major disapproval. When his classmates clamor to buy the K-pop branded beauty products his mom gave him to “make new friends,” he sees an opportunity—one that may be the key to help him pay for the music school tuition he knows his parents won’t cover…

What he doesn’t realize, though, is that he is now V&C K-BEAUTY’s biggest competitor.

Stakes are high as Valerie and Wes try to outsell each other, make the most money, and take the throne for the best business in school—all while trying to resist the undeniable spark that’s crackling between them. From hiring spies to all-or-nothing bets, the competition is much more than either of them bargained for.

But one thing is clear: only one Korean business can come out on top.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

While I didn’t love Made in Korea, I didn’t hate it either👀 Filled with an enemies-to-lovers romance altho its really more of Val considering Wes the enemy only, spies, sabotages, and heartwarming scenes, this was a pretty great debut. And it featured Korean-American main characters, which I’ve never seen in a book before, so that was fun!

“There isn’t always a price tag or a black-and-white answer for why people do what they do.”

For years, Val has been in charge of her very popular and successful K-pop beauty business with her cousin Charlie. She has her goal in mind and nobody will get in her way being the only K-pop beauty business at her school. All is going well… until new student Wes comes in and starts up his own K-pop beauty business.

Of course Val doesn’t take this well and soon they both make a bet—whoever makes the most money by the end of the school year gets to take all of the loser’s money. It’s an all or nothing…and thus, the competition begins.

Val annoyed me a lot in the beginning. The audacity of this girl. She acted like it was a personal offence that Wes started his own business—like no, he can have his own reasons to start a business too?? The way she treated him too-😶 uhh yeah, I definitely didn’t like her, and though Val did learn/get better towards the end, it didn’t change my feelings towards her.

Now Wes is just so sweet. He’s too nice honestly, like I really don’t understand how he liked Val but okay ¯_(ツ)_/¯ Wes deserved better, imo.

Also, his passion for music-🥺🥺 and the way he was trying to save up money for the fees required to go to music school because he knew his parents wouldn’t pay for him omg it was so sad 😦 Wes had a better reason for his business than Val did ngl.

Part of me probably wouldve enjoyed this book more if it weren’t for how much Val annoyed me, but also if I wasn’t bored. There were a lot of scenes that just dragged on for me, where I’d just be counting down the number of pages I had left until I finished so I could be free. Still, I wasn’t bored to the point that I hated it at least.

All in all, this was a all right debut by the author and I can see lots of potential for her future books! There were lots of K-pop references that I think K-pop fans would appreciate and love. I definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a quick read with characters who will do anything to beat the other~

~Thank you Simon & Schuster Canada for gifting me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!! <33

Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin | ARC Review

Eternally thankful to Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

From the author of Ayesha at Last comes a sparkling new rom-com for fans of “You’ve Got Mail,” set in two competing halal restaurants

Sales are slow at Three Sisters Biryani Poutine, the only halal restaurant in the close-knit Golden Crescent neighbourhood. Hana waitresses there part time, but what she really wants is to tell stories on the radio. If she can just outshine her fellow intern at the city radio station, she may have a chance at landing a job. In the meantime, Hana pours her thoughts and dreams into a podcast, where she forms a lively relationship with one of her listeners. But soon she’ll need all the support she can get: a new competing restaurant, a more upscale halal place, is about to open in the Golden Crescent, threatening Three Sisters.

When her mysterious aunt and her teenage cousin arrive from India for a surprise visit, they draw Hana into a long-buried family secret. A hate-motivated attack on their neighbourhood complicates the situation further, as does Hana’s growing attraction for Aydin, the young owner of the rival restaurant—who might not be a complete stranger after all.

As life on the Golden Crescent unravels, Hana must learn to use her voice, draw on the strength of her community and decide what her future should be. 

Rating: 3 out of 5.

THIS. this is the Muslim rep i’ve been looking for😭😭 and the story in general was just amazing

although, i must say that it was the characters that felt kind of flat for me :/ while i could connect with the main character, especially when it came to dealing with Islamophobia, i didn’t really love her or any of the other characters, which is what made me give this 3.5 stars instead of 4. for me, if the characters are written so well and im in love with them, i dont care if there’s a bad/no plot as long as the characters are good enough to keep me engaged and enjoy myself. if the plot’s good but i dont like/care the characters… that’ll definitely affect my rating = the case here.

OKAY BUT THE MUSLIM REP AND ISSUES THAT WERE DEALT WITH HERE WAS PERFECT. i went into this book hoping that there would be good representation of Islam and i was not disappointed🥺👏👏 the main character, Hana, didn’t feel oppressed by her parents nor did she hate her religion. it’s just normal. and she’d actually follow the rules in Islam. also the fact that she would fight back (in a non-violent way ofc) against those who threw insults at her or spoke in a condescending tone because she wore a hijab was amazing.

“No one knows when the dark days will descend, only that they come for us all.”

i love how deep this book got in not only how often cultures/races have to deal with so much hatred, but also the stereotypes that others assume represent a whole group of people. i could 100% understand the frustration the main character was feeling when it came to ideas of what to broadcast about Muslims, the options being only the stereotypes people have hear and nothing else. it made me happy seeing Hana refuse to back down from what she believed to be right. there was also the main character actually praying and going to halaqah and salat al jumaa (friday prayer) which didnt feel like tokenization!!!

also, i definitely wasn’t expecting that plot twist👀 i have to say though, that i didn’t really like the love interest — like i dont hate him, but nor i do care about him. although i did love how the ending was realistic and not everything was all happy and solved.

so while i didn’t love this book, i did really like it and will definitely be reading more from this author!! im just so happy that the Muslim rep was done well, like i cant even express it. definitely recommend this to anyone who wants to see a great representation of Islam/Muslims!!

“While I am scared of what the future will bring, the uncertainty has been refreshing in a strange way. I know who I am in a way I never have before, and know what I’m willing to sacrifice to stay true to myself. I guess that’s not a bad lesson to learn at any age.”

(3.5⭐)

𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕒 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕙𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕣𝕖𝕡 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕖𝕣𝕖 𝕝𝕠𝕠𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕗𝕠𝕣? 𝔸𝕟𝕪 𝕗𝕒𝕧𝕠𝕦𝕣𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Counting Down with You by Tashie Bhuiyan | ARC Review

Many thanks to Inkyard Press for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

A reserved Bangladeshi teenager has twenty-eight days to make the biggest decision of her life after agreeing to fake date her school’s resident bad boy.
How do you make one month last a lifetime?

Karina Ahmed has a plan. Keep her head down, get through high school without a fuss, and follow her parents’ rules—even if it means sacrificing her dreams. When her parents go abroad to Bangladesh for four weeks, Karina expects some peace and quiet. Instead, one simple lie unravels everything.

Karina is my girlfriend.

Tutoring the school’s resident bad boy was already crossing a line. Pretending to date him? Out of the question. But Ace Clyde does everything right—he brings her coffee in the mornings, impresses her friends without trying, and even promises to buy her a dozen books (a week) if she goes along with his fake-dating facade. Though Karina agrees, she can’t help but start counting down the days until her parents come back.

T-minus twenty-eight days until everything returns to normal—but what if Karina no longer wants it to?

Rating: 1 out of 5.

a lot of things annoyed me but the way the Muslim aspect of this book was handled-

i am rage🙂


this was my first Muslim rep book and the disappointment and frustration im feeling is unfathomable and i was so excited ughhhh

okay, but before i get into the negatives and start ranting, i’ll say the good stuff:

-the anxiety rep in here and how the main character dealt with it was pretty good.
-how the MC fought for what degree she wanted to pursue was amazing. parents should never be forcing their child to do what something they dont want to do.
-the sibling relationship was sweet.
-this was a pretty quick read.

thats it.

and i was actually loving this in the beginning.😭 all my highlights literally showed my happiness at how the MC being Muslim was incorporated into this book. all the arabic words, her praying, other religious mentions-

then there was the MC dealing with anxiety and the pressure her parents put on her, and i felt bad for her. she was dealing with so much and was so scared to speak up about not wanting to be a doctor. her parents were absolutely ruthless when it came to discussing a change in career paths, they just went ahead and chose her future for her and i despised them.

but of course what happens next? the white boy comes into her life teaching her to be stronger, believe in herself (etc) and brings her happiness

….

silence

it’s not even that it was a white boy bringing her happiness that got me annoyed, but how the parents were villainized when it came to religion (but i understand them looking like villains when it came to not allowing her to pursue an English major — that made sense) and that of course it was the white boy who saved her from the pain and sadness she was feeling.

literally what pisses me off so much is that she’d constantly complain of the things her parents would forbid her from doing that you know, are because it’s not allowed in Islam??? like i totally am with the main character when it came to her parents not allowing her to pursue the career she wants. parents 100% should not be doing that, it’s really messed up, especially with the pressure put on their child. they really should just be happy with what their kid wants to grow up to be, and that’s the one thing i disliked about her parents.

other than that–what the hell?? the MC constantly makes out her parents to be the bad guys for other stuff, when that’s not even true ohmygod. for one thing, you aren’t supposed to date guys/have boyfriends/kiss the opposite gender in Islam. It’s not that her parents are evil and do this as a personal attack, its haram (forbidden). Yet the main character here literally is like “i want happiness, why cant they let me have be with him” — girl, im with you about wanting to find happiness with the job, but you know…shouldn’t you be faithful to your religion and understand that it’s not allowed to date so your parents are right to tell you it’s forbidden?? i am confusion. and im the same age as this girl and i know this. i dont hate on my parents???

i obviously understand that this was marketed as fake-dating trope, so im not surprised with how some of the things turned out, and she can go ahead and date the guy, but it just really makes me angry me that the main character makes her parents look evil for telling her that she isn’t allowed to date? sigh

okay, but all of that i just said — maybe some wont mind it, it’s probably just something only i and some others would be annoyed with. i just feel like if you’re gonna write about a Muslim character, don’t break that rule and cast the parents in a bad light?? idk. either way, don’t make out your parents to be evil because they won’t let you date. and it’s not even something that we need to be pitied for or looked at in horror, like what the other characters in this book did when she told them. it’s part of what we’ve learned in our religion, so respect it.

i swear, i feel like this book was trying to push the idea that all Muslim parents are strict to this degree and are harsh. it’s in no way like that. maybe some are, but the same could be said with any other race/religion — it’s just that with Muslim rep books (and cough Netlfix shows), the parents are for the most part portrayed as villains.

and yes, i saw that the MC would constantly say that she knows her religion isn’t bad, she knows her parents aren’t evil, but her actions and what she’d say/do after… she says she understands but she would still complain about them the next few pages, saying how they’re unfair?? she’d be so bitter about it and then she breaks said rules😐

but again, one thing I did love was seeing the MC go against her parents when it came to doing the degree she wanted and not what they wanted. definitely a lot of people can relate with being forced to become a doctor, engineer, or lawyer. im thankful that my parents have never pushed me to become something i dont want to be.

i just hate what this book implies. i hate that people who will read this may think that all Muslim parents are controlling and cruel to their children. i hate that some may even pity us for some of this. just no. i can tell you that im proud to be a Muslim and proud of my religion. i don’t think any of the rules/what we’re forbidden to do is harsh at all. it makes complete sense in my eyes and i love my parents. i love everything about Islam.

now let’s get to the love interest. I DESPISE Ace with every ounce of my being. he’s legit the typical white bad boy who’s secretly a softie inside once you get to know him. i do not care about him. He’s so cheesy and im all here for the cheesiness BUT NOT THIS. so many cringey scenes and i did not see the chemistry between the two at all. sure, they had kinda similar situations when it came to their families, but like?? thats it?? i dont like either of them, but especially the main character.

i seriously think in general, if an author is going to incorporate religion into a YA contemporary, then you should actually follow through with the religion?? bc if you’re not going to do that, then literally what’s the point-

and if you’re going to end up casting the religion in a negative light, then again…what’s the point?? unless you’re just trying to make others think badly on said religion?? Whether it’s Christianity, Muslim, Hinduism, Judaism, etc — follow through on those teachings. dont bother writing about a religious character in a book if you’re not even going to follow through on some of the rules and villainize the parents. thankfully at least the MC would eat halal food, occasionaly pray, and understood that getting drunk was haram. but the dating and kissing, casting her parents as evil in those aspects…no🤚

and it’s sad, because the author is Muslim so i thought it’d actually follow through on that. like the author probably didn’t mean to show Islam in a bad way, but that’s how it looked like to me. i think that maybe non-Muslims or people who aren’t really familiar with Islam will probably like this book, though.

i saw in other reviews that the Bengali rep was done poorly too — im not from Bangladesh, so i cant say anything bc i wouldn’t know, but thats so sad it wasn’t done well either 😦

anyways, im not going to waste any more of my time with this book. all i’ve gained from this is that i should never trust books with Muslim reps without having first read reviews by Muslims themselves. i shouldn’t have had high expectations🤡

𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕒 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕖𝕣𝕖 𝕖𝕩𝕔𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕕 𝕗𝕠𝕣 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕖𝕟𝕕𝕖𝕕 𝕦𝕡 𝕓𝕖𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕒 𝕕𝕚𝕤𝕒𝕡𝕡𝕠𝕚𝕟𝕥𝕞𝕖𝕟𝕥? 𝔸𝕟𝕪 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕚𝕤𝕙 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕙𝕒𝕟𝕕𝕝𝕖𝕕 𝕒 𝕣𝕖𝕡 𝕨𝕖𝕝𝕝?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

The Inheritance Games (The Inheritance Games, #1) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes | Review

A Cinderella story with deadly stakes and thrilling twists.

Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why–or even who Tobias Hawthorne is. To receive her inheritance, Avery must move into sprawling, secret passage-filled Hawthorne House, where every room bears the old man’s touch–and his love of puzzles, riddles, and codes.

Unfortunately for Avery, Hawthorne House is also occupied by the family that Tobias Hawthorne just dispossessed. This includes the four Hawthorne grandsons: dangerous, magnetic, brilliant boys who grew up with every expectation that one day, they would inherit billions. Heir apparent Grayson Hawthorne is convinced that Avery must be a con-woman, and he’s determined to take her down. His brother, Jameson, views her as their grandfather’s last hurrah: a twisted riddle, a puzzle to be solved. Caught in a world of wealth and privilege, with danger around every turn, Avery will have to play the game herself just to survive.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

WHAT

it did not just end like that i-

also, jameson and grayson are mine😼 i cant choose one


ah, its been so long since I last read a mystery and this just made me remember how much I miss it. Once again, I have fallen in love. The characters, the plot, everything about this was just amazing.

Excuse me while I suffer waiting until September for book 2.✌

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“If there’s one thing the Hawthorne family isn’t, it’s fine. They were a twisted, broken mess before you got here, and they’ll be a twisted, broken mess once you’re gone.”

I still can’t get over that Avery just randomly got called to inherit a billionaire’s fortune?? How awesome is that? You don’t even know said billionaire and have never come across anyone close to them and yet you get all the money that was originally all supposed to go to his grandsons???

I couldn’t stop laughing when that happened. They were sooo pissed it was hilarious. Although I can’t blame them, I would’ve wanted to kill her… which is probably why she got all those death threats

ouch.

I love Avery. She’s literally so smart and the way she wouldn’t let her personal feelings get in the way in trying to find solve the case was really admirable. Also, being able to show no emotion on her face?? I wish I could do that — it sounds so cool and it’d be really useful for me during those games of chess i lose.

And Jameson ahhh Jamie my bby🥺 demon mashie mentioned how he gives off Matthew Fairchild vibes and seriously why is that so true??? TLH has gotten to us smh.

But anyways, I’m in love with his chaoticness (thats not a word) ughh I’m seeing a trend in the type of guys I keep falling for. i mean, he’s like matthew so how could i not love him?? Getting drunk to run away from his problems and acting like a maniac even sober… I love it. And the way he talked omg-

“If I do what I should no more often than I say what I shouldn’t—” his lips twisted—”then what does that make me?”

I had no idea what he was saying here?? Although he was drunk, so maybe that’s why, but ohmygod I literally spent 10 minutes trying to understand that sentence. god i love jamie.🥺 oh what a coincidence that he has the same nickname as james herondale…okay ill stop now

Okay, and then there’s the broody older brother, Grayson, who I absolutely despised at first, but he’s actually so sweet??? I can’t blame him for always putting his family first sdfsdfs what is this? Me falling in love with two potential love interests for the love triangle?? oh no, not good, not good. cries is it too much to ask for both of them to be happy?

There was also Nash, the oldest brother of the 4, but I don’t like him. There’s something off about him and I just cant with him. Now Xander, the youngest one, is such a sweet cinnamon roll. The bright and happy one of the group… or so it seems. Who knows? I definitely can’t wait to see more of him next book hehe

“Sometimes things that appear very different on the surface are actually exactly the same at their core.”

This has to be the first time that one of the first few guesses I made ended up being right?? I am beyond shocked. This needs to be marked in history. I, Lia Demonstairs, have actually guessed correctly.

ah, this feeling… so satisfying. But anyways, I had it from the beginning but throughout the book I kept changing because everyone was acting so sus. smh I still don’t know who to trust!! what is this sorcery??

And that twist at the end

Dear Authors, you cannot just end a book like that. You’re literally killing us. And when we die, we cant read the 2nd book, and when we cant read the book, that hurts you so in the end we both suffer, right? So why not take pity on our poor mortal souls and not end it like that?? Thank you.

just kidding, the masochist in me loves this torture

════▣◎▣════

Buddy read with some demons krizzie, mash, lucy, ish, charm, and devika.

ℍ𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕣𝕖𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤? 𝕎𝕙𝕚𝕔𝕙 ℍ𝕒𝕨𝕥𝕙𝕠𝕣𝕟𝕖 𝕓𝕣𝕠𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕣 𝕕𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕝𝕠𝕧𝕖? 𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕨𝕠𝕦𝕝𝕕 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕕𝕠 𝕚𝕗 𝕒 𝕓𝕚𝕝𝕝𝕚𝕠𝕟𝕒𝕚𝕣𝕖 𝕠𝕗𝕗𝕖𝕣𝕖𝕕 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕚𝕣 𝕗𝕠𝕣𝕥𝕦𝕟𝕖?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Hot British Boyfriend by Kristy Boyce | ARC Review

After a horrifying public rejection by her crush, Ellie Nichols does what any girl would do: she flees the country. To be more precise, she joins her high school’s study abroad trip to England. While most of her classmates are there to take honors courses and pad their college applications, Ellie is on a quest to rebuild her reputation and self-confidence. And nothing is more of a confidence booster than getting a hot British boyfriend.

When Ellie meets Will, a gorgeous and charming Brit, she vows to avoid making the same mistakes as she did with the last guy she liked. Which is why she strikes up a bargain with Dev, an overachieving classmate who she’s never clicked with, but who does seem to know a lot about the things Will is interested in—if he helps her win over her crush, then she’ll help him win over his.

But even as Ellie embarks on a whirlwind romance, one that takes her on adventures to some of England’s most beautiful places, she still needs to figure out if this is actually the answer to all her problems…and whether the perfect boyfriend is actually the perfect boy for her.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

That was actually…cute?!?!

But Will here was nowhere near as perfect as Will Herondale. swoooon

im weird, i know


But wow, I wasn’t actually expecting to like HBB. After being warned, I went into this with very low expectations, so maybe that’s why I ended up really liking it? ahaha who knows.

═════ °• ♔ •° ═════

After being publicly humiliated due to a * ahem * misunderstanding at a high school party, Ellie wants nothing more than to disappear.

And what better way to do that then to run away to England? I mean, I’d totally do the same.

But really, there was just another spot open to study abroad, and so Ellie took that chance. There, she meets with three others from her school, and our charming hot British mate, Will. Of course, she automatically has a huge obsession crush on him. And the other way around.

Ahhh ✨insta-love✨. Or is it really? I guess obsessing over him isn’t the same as love.

Anyways, from the blurb alone it sounded like any typical contemporary romance novel but oh how more complicated and amazing it was.

I admit, I wasn’t really a huge fan of Ellie — like she was pretty cool, and her hobbies were really cute bUT HER OBSESSION WITH BOYS


Now she’s what you call boy-crazy. But Ellie did (kinda?) tone it down on the boys. Definitely a difference when you compare her from the beginning and the end. Still, there were so many moments that made me cringe ahaha and secondhand embarrassment asdsadfs poor Ellie.

And ohmygod her friends were adorkable. (they were a very diverse cast too😏) One played Quidditch, one could beat-box, and the other was such a nerd — I loved it. They’re such dorks, and that’s what makes them so lovable.


I could not get enough of the places they visited in Europe. sdfdsfds I’ve always wanted to travel to England. The accents especially omg it’s amazing. All the places to visit ughh my school should really have a study abroad in England smh I’m going to petition for one.

The ending was very satisfying as well. Loved the way the author handled it.

All in all, if you’re looking for super cute read, looking for some diversity, and can handle the MC’s obsession with ~de boys~ I think you’ll enjoy this too!!

I still want a hot British boyfriend tho-



Buddy read with the amazing Alex @ The Scribe Owl. Loved buddy reading with you! ❤

═════ °• ♔ •° ═════

Thank you Harper Teen for sending me an ARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review!!

𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕝𝕒𝕤𝕥 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕣𝕖𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕨𝕒𝕤 𝕒𝕓𝕤𝕠𝕝𝕦𝕥𝕖𝕝𝕪 𝕛𝕦𝕤𝕥 𝕒𝕕𝕠𝕣𝕒𝕓𝕝𝕖? 𝔻𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕙𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕠𝕟 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕋𝔹ℝ?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Love in English by Maria E. Andreu | ARC Review

Sixteen-year-old Ana has just moved to New Jersey from Argentina for her Junior year of high school. She’s a poet and a lover of language—except that now, she can barely understand what’s going on around her, let alone find the words to express how she feels in the language she’s expected to speak.

All Ana wants to do is go home—until she meets Harrison, the very cute, very American boy in her math class. And then there’s her new friend Neo, the Greek boy she’s partnered up with in ESL class, who she bonds with over the 80s teen movies they are assigned to watch for class (but later keep watching together for fun), and Altagracia, her artistic and Instagram-fabulous friend, who thankfully is fluent in Spanish and able to help her settle into American high school.

But is it possible that she’s becoming too American—as her father accuses—and what does it mean when her feelings for Harrison and Neo start to change? Ana will spend her year learning that the rules of English may be confounding, but there are no rules when it comes to love.

With playful and poetic breakouts exploring the idiosyncrasies of the English language, Love in English tells a story that is simultaneously charming and romantic, while articulating a deeper story about what it means to become “American.”

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Huh. I never thought English could be so complicated in the eyes of others.

Maybe I shouldn’t make fun of my mom for her English😂 who am i kidding? it’s hilarious


This book really did a good job in showing how much people struggle moving to a new country and being forced to learn a new language in order to try blending in.

Ana is a 16 year old high schooler whose just moved from Argentina to New Jersey, U.S. which is the result of her father who she hasn’t seen in 3 years. Considering she’s been speaking Spanish her whole life and has only started learning English for a few years, she of course isn’t used to it, so Ana is put into ESL.

From there she’s able to connect/relate more to the others because they also are in the same situation she’s in and so she meets Neo, a boy from Greece. Of course they bond well together. But then she also meets Harrison, ~le americane boy~, and instantly has a crush on him…can you see where I’m going?

aye, it’s the horrid love triangle.


But the good thing is that it didn’t really play a huge part in the story, or maybe it didn’t feel like that to me, since this was short anyways. It was mostly just Ana trying to understand whether she was in love or not and what really is love.

I could tell that the author was putting in her own experiences into this book and I liked how she did it. I would say I can’t imagine how humiliating it is to not understand what others are saying while they laugh at you, but ahahahaha it’s happened a few times *war flashbacks* cant say i didn’t deserve it tho lol

In the end I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t love it either, hence the rating of 3 stars. I couldn’t really care much for the characters but that’s probably just me. I think for those who can really relate Ana, they’d love her and her growth throughout the novel.

—–

Thank you Harper Collins Canada for sending me this ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

𝔻𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕙𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕠𝕟 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕋𝔹ℝ? ℍ𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕖𝕧𝕖𝕣 𝕙𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕠 𝕤𝕥𝕣𝕦𝕘𝕘𝕝𝕖 𝕨𝕚𝕥𝕙 𝕤𝕡𝕖𝕒𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕒 𝕟𝕖𝕨 𝕝𝕒𝕟𝕘𝕦𝕒𝕘𝕖 𝕚𝕟 𝕒 𝕟𝕖𝕨 𝕔𝕠𝕦𝕟𝕥𝕣𝕪?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia | Review

Her story is a phenomenon. Her life is a disaster.

In the real world, Eliza Mirk is shy, weird, and friendless. Online, she’s LadyConstellation, the anonymous creator of the wildly popular webcomic Monstrous Sea. Eliza can’t imagine enjoying the real world as much as she loves the online one, and she has no desire to try.

Then Wallace Warland, Monstrous Sea’s biggest fanfiction writer, transfers to her school. Wallace thinks Eliza is just another fan, and as he draws her out of her shell, she begins to wonder if a life offline might be worthwhile.

But when Eliza’s secret is accidentally shared with the world, everything she’s built—her story, her relationship with Wallace, and even her sanity—begins to fall apart.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“I am LadyConstellation.
I am also Eliza Mirk.
This is the paradox that can never be solved.”



That ending should be torn out, placed in a shredder, lit on fire, and buried in a grave.

Oh, and don’t forget the explosives 😦


Minus a certain scene from the ending, this book was absolutely beautiful and I almost cried reading this.🥺 but im emotional in general, so that doesnt mean anything

★。\|/。★

“Like life, what gives a story its meaning is the fact that it ends. Our stories have lives of their own—and its up to us to make them mean something.”


Eighteen year old Eliza Mirks looks to be like any other normal high schooler dealing with the anxiety/stress of school and being a total introvert like me . . . but online, she’s also known as the LadyConstellation—creator of one of the most popular webcomics in the world ~ Monstrous Sea.

Everyday goes about the same until she meets the new kid, Wallace, who also happens to be writing fanfiction for Monstrous Sea. After one incident, they slowly start to become more acquainted with another, and so forth with their relationship.


“I made Monstrous Sea because it’s the story I wanted.
I wanted a story like it, and I couldn’t find one, so I created it myself.”


Like many others have stated, I could see myself in Eliza.

★ I totally prefer being online than real life, I mean Goodreads is basically e v e r y t h i n g.

★ I don’t hate socializing, but I prefer to be alone most of the time with my books of course hehe.

★ I definitely always overthink the most simplest things that happen because I’m always worried about what the other person will think xD ahhh she’s just so relatable.


And then there were also those times when Eliza would be so absorbed in drawing the next episode for Monstrous Sea that she’d ignore everything else around her, especially her family trying to talk to her . . . and that reminds me of all those times I’d be so absorbed in what I’m reading that I’d do the same thing Eliza does (except not as extreme as losing track of days).

This is a good lesson for me not to do that so much. I can’t help being so into a book though hehe😂

What’s the point of being alive if you don’t do what makes you happy? What good is a career that makes you money if you hate yourself every day you do it?”

Now I was pretty okay with Wallace in the beginning. I did find it a little weird that they’d exchange notes talking to each other when they were right next to the other, but I understand people are different.

Omg but when it was revealed why he’s so quiet and his story in what happened a few years ago . . . that was SO SAD😭 I felt so bad for him, that is just terrible. And after that I liked and understood him a lot more.

BUT THEN THAT WAS RUINED TOWARDS THE ENDING.👿

What he said to Eliza . . . omg no I don’t care if it decides your future and you’re stressed out, you should never demand that of someone when clearly they themselves are dealing with a lot. And nobody in this world has a “perfect life”, even if it looks like it. We don’t know what they’re dealing with and what they had to deal with for their life to look like that.

He apologized in the end, and she forgave him, but I don’t know . . . I guess I’m just less forgiving ¯_(ツ)_/¯


Ahh I did love the side characters though! Max and Emmy are the best online friends Eliza could’ve asked for. And they’re h i l a r i o u s😂 I love their convos xD

“Apocalypse_Cow: what kind of guy is usually interested in you?

MirkerLurker: The kind I make up in my head.

Apocalypse_Cow: wooooooooooooooooooooooow

Apocalypse_Cow: woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow

Apocalypse_Cow: do you want me to go ahead and fill your house with cats right now, or do you want to put that off for a few years?

MirkerLurker: Har har

MirkerLurker: I have to sit next to this guy in homeroom on Monday. What am I going to say to him?

emmersmacks: What have you been saying to him

MirkerLurker: Nothing. I thought that was clear.

emmersmacks: Then continue doing that

emmersmacks: If he wants to say something to you he will

MirkerLurker: Why does a twelve-year-old know more about boys than I do?

emmersmacks: IM FOURTEEN”

I love them.😆 Along with Sully and Church, of course.

And the ending was beautiful, I just wanted to cry. Other than Eliza forgiving Wallace, I loved it.

Ahhhh but I do wish we could see how Eliza decided to end Monstrous Sea. Oh well.😢

★。/|\。★

“The things you care most about are the ones that leave the biggest holes.”

ℍ𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕣𝕖𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤? 𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕝𝕒𝕤𝕥 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕞𝕒𝕕𝕖 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕗𝕖𝕖𝕝 𝕝𝕚𝕜𝕖 𝕔𝕣𝕪𝕚𝕟𝕘?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕