Review: Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby

 17571215.jpgThings We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby

Published by HarperTeen on April 21st 2015

Page Count: 304

Genre(s): YA, contemporary, romance, coming-of-age, grief

Format: Hardcover, library copy (but will be purchasing a shiny hardcover copy of ASAP!)

Would I recommend? Yes, absolutely. This is by far the best book I’ve encountered this year and one of the most perfect books I’ve ever read. A unique concept, lovely characters, and a brilliant, long-lasting effect. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone.

Rating: ★★★★★


When Quinn Sullivan meets the recipient of her boyfriend’s donated heart, the two form an unexpected connection.

After Quinn loses her boyfriend, Trent, in an accident their junior year, she reaches out to the recipients of his donated organs in hopes of picking up the pieces of her now-unrecognizable life. She hears back from some of them, but the person who received Trent’s heart has remained silent. The essence of a person, she has always believed, is in the heart. If she finds Trent’s, then maybe she can have peace once and for all.

Risking everything in order to finally lay her memories to rest, Quinn goes outside the system to track down nineteen-year-old Colton Thomas—a guy whose life has been forever changed by this priceless gift. But what starts as an accidental run-in quickly develops into more, sparking an undeniable attraction. She doesn’t want to give in to it—especially since he has no idea how they’re connected—but their time together has made Quinn feel alive again. No matter how hard she’s falling for Colton, each beat of his heart reminds her of all she’s lost…and all that remains at stake.

-Goodreads.com description

My Thoughts

I really, really tried to word a review that would do this book justice, but I just couldn’t. Not in my typical review format, anyway. One of my blogging resolutions for 2016 was to play around with some different review formats, so who knows, maybe I’ll try doing something like this again in the future! There’s no need to worry about spoilers in this review; as always, there is none. Hopefully reading this post will give you a little insight as to why I loved and needed this book so much.


Dear Jessi,

I went into Things We Know By Heart with pretty high expectations. After you completely stole my heart with your lovely novel In Honor, how couldn’t I? When I was perusing Goodreads one day and stumbled across your latest novel (and this was before I even knew you existed, mind you), I instantly fell in love with the title, cover, synopsis, everything. I knew from that day that Things We Know By Heart would be a definite 5-star read, and I certainly wasn’t wrong.

Things We Know By Heart was a beautiful, utterly perfect novel. I honestly couldn’t have asked for anything more. I read some reviews and noticed that a few people said that the novel’s concept is a bit cliche or stereotyped, but really, how could it be? There may have been a few common tropes I recognized, but every novel has those. The concept in its entirety is so unique, so brilliant, that I don’t think any other author has ever written anything like it before.

I already knew from reading In Honor that your writing style is gorgeous, Jessi, but Things We Know By Heart gave a whole new definition to amazing writing. Your prose is so seamless and flows so well that I found myself reading every sentence twice in effort to savor every word. There was also lots of dialogue, which I adored. What struck me most about your writing, though, was the descriptions. I absolutely loved how you described the setting of the novel in such a powerful and poetic way that left me thinking, hey, I want to go there! A few days ago in English class, we were discussing how setting can make such a big impact on the overall effect and theme statement of a book, and I really saw this aspect come into play with your novel. A big part of your book took place at a beachy setting, which I really appreciated because I could relate to Quinn’s and Colton’s connection with nature on a very personal level.

When I read this novel, I was in a pretty tough place. It was near the end of the year and I was stressing out about all the assignments teachers were piling up, I hadn’t read any good books lately, I hadn’t gotten a chance to go on an ocean swim recently, swim practice was super stressful. Honestly, I was just really tired. I felt like I needed a long break, like life was this never-ending cycle of stressfulness and tough situations and I had to fight to make it through every day. This is why I was so, so thankful that I read Things We Know By Heart when I did. I needed to read that novel desperately just then, and you, Jessi, allowed me to do just this. So thank you. Thank you so much.

Although I thankfully hadn’t ever gone through an experience similar to the one Quinn had to go through, I still related to her and empathized with her so much. You have a way of carving out characters that manage to find their way into your heart within the first few chapters, and I’m so grateful for this. I’m so grateful that I had the pleasure of meeting Quinn, and of learning about – no, living – her incredible story. She is such a strong, unique, and very real character, and I genuinely felt while reading this book that I experienced some degree of every emotion she went through. I understood her, I empathized with her, I cried with her. At first glance you might think that it’s unrealistic and naive for a young character to be going through this much grief after the death of a boyfriend, but once you get to know her and understand the bond she and Trent shared, it makes so much sense. I feel like going looking for Trent’s heart recipient was exactly what I would have done if I was in her shoes. I understand why she wanted to look for Colton in effort to find a piece of one of the people she loved the most. She was incredibly strong, but she definitely had some flaws, too. Her mistakes and weaknesses were what really made me be able to love her and relate to her so much.

Alright, now I should talk about Colton. Earlier in my review I talked about some of the aspects of your book that made such a lasting impact on me, but in all honesty, Colton’s character was what really made the difference. I started this novel feeling small, tired, and relatively insignificant. I finished this novel feeling empowered, inspired, and ultimately fulfilled. This was the result of having the pleasure of meeting a lovely character by the name of Colton Thomas.

Colton’s character was just wonderful. He was one of the most real, fleshed-out characters I had ever met, and definitely one of my favorites. He’s sweet, quirky, idealistic, weird, observant, and independent. He cares so much for Quinn and his family, and he’s a real gentleman. He’s strong, flawed, and pragmatic. He has had to go through so many tough experiences, and these experiences have helped shape the lovely person he is. What struck me most about his character, however, was his passion for nature. He literally lived every day like it was his last because his experiences had taught him to, and he taught Quinn to do the same. He fed his passions boldly and fearlessly, and invited others to do the same. He had such a deep connection with nature – the ocean, in particular – that it immediately made me want to put on a bathing suit and dive in to the 56 degree surf.

In fact, that’s just what I did after finishing this novel. I put your book down, careful not to bend any of the pages, slipped into my favorite one-piece, drove down to the beach, and plunged into the frigid ocean. I floated out there for a while, feeling the waves lap against my body, feeling the seaweed thread in between my fingers, watching the way the sun set over the water, feeding my passion boldly and fearlessly just as Colton had. This book was one of the most powerful, inspirational, impactful books I’ve ever read.

So thank you, Jessi. Thank you for creating characters that I could empathize with and relate to. Thank you for your beautiful writing that made me want to get up at 6am every morning to read it. Thank you for making me smile, cry, laugh, swoon, think, and act. Thank you for creating such wonderful relationships between your characters and your readers (AKA me). Thank you for inspiring me and moving me in a way that no book has ever inspired me and moved me before. I appreciate it so much. If you ever end up reading this letter, Jessi, I hope it gives you even the smallest insight to how much I loved and appreciated you book. Really, it meant the world to me.

Love, Paige

Rating: 5/5 Stars


Woah, that was a long post. To everyone who managed to get to the bottom of all that: thank you so much! I hope you enjoyed it, despite my rambles.

Let’s talk: have you read Things We Know By Heart? What did you think of it? What is your favorite Jessi Kirby book?

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Review: Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby | A Letter to Jessi Kirby

 17571215.jpgThings We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby

Published by HarperTeen on April 21st 2015

Page Count: 304

Genre(s): YA, contemporary, romance, coming-of-age, grief

Format: Hardcover, library copy (but will be purchasing a shiny hardcover copy of ASAP!)

Would I recommend? Yes, absolutely. This is by far the best book I’ve encountered this year and one of the most perfect books I’ve ever read. A unique concept, lovely characters, and a brilliant, long-lasting effect. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone.

Rating: ★★★★★


When Quinn Sullivan meets the recipient of her boyfriend’s donated heart, the two form an unexpected connection.

After Quinn loses her boyfriend, Trent, in an accident their junior year, she reaches out to the recipients of his donated organs in hopes of picking up the pieces of her now-unrecognizable life. She hears back from some of them, but the person who received Trent’s heart has remained silent. The essence of a person, she has always believed, is in the heart. If she finds Trent’s, then maybe she can have peace once and for all.

Risking everything in order to finally lay her memories to rest, Quinn goes outside the system to track down nineteen-year-old Colton Thomas—a guy whose life has been forever changed by this priceless gift. But what starts as an accidental run-in quickly develops into more, sparking an undeniable attraction. She doesn’t want to give in to it—especially since he has no idea how they’re connected—but their time together has made Quinn feel alive again. No matter how hard she’s falling for Colton, each beat of his heart reminds her of all she’s lost…and all that remains at stake.

-Goodreads.com description

My Thoughts

I really, really tried to word a review that would do this book justice, but I just couldn’t. Not in my typical review format, anyway. One of my blogging resolutions for 2016 was to play around with some different review formats, so who knows, maybe I’ll try doing something like this again in the future! There’s no need to worry about spoilers in this review; as always, there is none. Hopefully reading this post will give you a little insight as to why I loved and needed this book so much.


Dear Jessi,

I went into Things We Know By Heart with pretty high expectations. After you completely stole my heart with your lovely novel In Honor, how couldn’t I? When I was perusing Goodreads one day and stumbled across your latest novel (and this was before I even knew you existed, mind you), I instantly fell in love with the title, cover, synopsis, everything. I knew from that day that Things We Know By Heart would be a definite 5-star read, and I certainly wasn’t wrong.

Things We Know By Heart was a beautiful, utterly perfect novel. I honestly couldn’t have asked for anything more. I read some reviews and noticed that a few people said that the novel’s concept is a bit cliche or stereotyped, but really, how could it be? There may have been a few common tropes I recognized, but every novel has those. The concept in its entirety is so unique, so brilliant, that I don’t think any other author has ever written anything like it before. And if you do know of a book that deals with a similar topic, please point me in its direction!

I already knew from reading In Honor that your writing style is gorgeous, Jessi, but Things We Know By Heart gave a whole new definition to amazing writing. Your prose is so seamless and flows so well that I found myself reading every sentence twice in effort to savor every word. There was also lots of dialogue, which I adored. What struck me most about your writing, though, was the descriptions. I absolutely loved how you described the setting of the novel in such a powerful and poetic way that left me thinking, hey, I want to go there! A few days ago in English class, we were discussing how setting can make such a big impact on the overall effect and theme statement of a book, and I really saw this aspect come into play with your novel. A big part of your book took place at a beachy setting, which I really appreciated because I could relate to Quinn’s and Colton’s connection with nature on a very personal level.

When I read this novel, I was in a pretty tough place. It was near the end of the year and I was stressing out about all the assignments teachers were piling up, I hadn’t read any good books lately, I hadn’t gotten a chance to go on an ocean swim recently, swim practice was super stressful. Honestly, I was just really tired. I felt like I needed a long break, like life was this never-ending cycle of stressfulness and tough situations and I had to fight to make it through every day. This is why I was so, so thankful that I read Things We Know By Heart when I did. I needed to read that novel desperately just then, and you, Jessi, allowed me to do just this. So thank you. Thank you so much.

Although I thankfully hadn’t ever gone through an experience similar to the one Quinn had to go through, I still related to her and empathized with her so much. You have a way of carving out characters that manage to find their way into your heart within the first few chapters, and I’m so grateful for this. I’m so grateful that I had the pleasure of meeting Quinn, and of learning about – no, living – her incredible story. She is such a strong, unique, and very real character, and I genuinely felt while reading this book that I experienced some degree of every emotion she went through. I understood her, I empathized with her, I cried with her. At first glance you might think that it’s unrealistic and naive for a young character to be going through this much grief after the death of a boyfriend, but once you get to know her and understand the bond she and Trent shared, it makes so much sense. I feel like going looking for Trent’s heart recipient was exactly what I would have done if I was in her shoes. I understand why she wanted to look for Colton in effort to find a piece of one of the people she loved the most. She was incredibly strong, but she definitely had some flaws, too. Her mistakes and weaknesses were what really made me be able to love her and relate to her so much.

Alright, now I should talk about Colton. Earlier in my review I talked about some of the aspects of your book that made such a lasting impact on me, but in all honesty, Colton’s character was what really made the difference. I started this novel feeling small, tired, and relatively insignificant. I finished this novel feeling empowered, inspired, and ultimately fulfilled. This was the result of having the pleasure of meeting a lovely character by the name of Colton Thomas.

Colton’s character was just wonderful. He was one of the most real, fleshed-out characters I had ever met, and definitely one of my favorites. He’s sweet, quirky, idealistic, weird, observant, and independent. He cares so much for Quinn and his family, and he’s a real gentleman. He’s strong, flawed, and pragmatic. He has had to go through so many tough experiences, and these experiences have helped shape the lovely person he is. What struck me most about his character, however, was his passion for nature. He literally lived every day like it was his last because his experiences had taught him to, and he taught Quinn to do the same. He fed his passions boldly and fearlessly, and invited others to do the same. He had such a deep connection with nature – the ocean, in particular – that it immediately made me want to put on a bathing suit and dive in to the 56 degree surf.

In fact, that’s just what I did after finishing this novel. I put your book down, careful not to bend any of the pages, slipped into my favorite one-piece, drove down to the beach, and plunged into the frigid ocean. I floated out there for a while, feeling the waves lap against my body, feeling the seaweed thread in between my fingers, watching the way the sun set over the water, feeding my passion boldly and fearlessly just as Colton had. This book was one of the most powerful, inspirational, impactful books I’ve ever read.

So thank you, Jessi. Thank you for creating characters that I could empathize with and relate to. Thank you for your beautiful writing that made me want to get up at 6am every morning to read it. Thank you for making me smile, cry, laugh, swoon, think, and act. Thank you for creating such wonderful relationships between your characters and your readers (AKA, me). Thank you for inspiring me and moving me in a way that no book has ever inspired me and moved me before. I appreciate it so much. If you ever end up reading this letter, Jessi, I hope it gives you even the smallest insight to how much I loved and appreciated you book. Really, it meant the world to me.

Love, Paige

Rating: 5/5 Stars


Woah, that was a long post. To everyone who managed to get to the bottom of all that: thank you so much! I hope you enjoyed it, despite my rambles.

Let’s talk: have you read Things We Know By Heart? What did you think of it? What is your favorite Jessi Kirby book?

7 Reasons Why I’d Recommend Love Letters To The Dead by Ava Dellaira To Anyone

18140047Love Letters To The Dead by Ava Dellaira

I first read Love Letters to the Dead three years ago, and I absolutely loved it. It was the book that first got me into YA Contemporary, which is now probably my favorite genre. Because of the fact that I read this book three years ago and I don’t remember very much of it, and because I’m too lazy to write a full review on it, I decided to compile a list of why I think everyone would benefit from reading this amazing book.


The Writing. 

Seriously, I can’t even begin to explain how gorgeous Dellaira’s prose is. I found myself scrambling throughout the entire book for my quote notebook and my highlighter. (Yes, I highlight my books. Don’t hate, okay?😉 )

Laurel.

I love a narrator that I can really understand and sympathize with, and Laurel definitely has these qualities. Her voice was mature, but not too unrealistic, and her decisions and actions were often flawed, which I think is very important.

ALL THE FEELS. 

I know there’s people that specifically avoid books like this for that very reason, but I, particularly, happen to find myself attracted to tear-jerkers. Grief is a very difficult subject to write about, and Dellaira definitely handled it well. In my opinion, the best kind of books are the ones that really make you feel something.

The Unique Concept!

I mean, come on: who isn’t intrigued by the idea of writing letters to dead people? This topic is really interesting to me, and it’s cool to see what a strong role all these people had in both Laurel’s and May’s lives. I also loved this unique format, because I normally don’t read books written in letter format, but I really enjoyed how Dellaira handled it.

The Romance.

I loved, loved, loved Laurel and Sky’s relationship! There was no insta-love, and I really enjoyed watching the characters gradually get to know each other. While I didn’t love Sky as a character, I loved to see him with Laurel.

May and Laurel’s Relationship.

Strong sister-sister relationships are something I’d love to see more of in YA, and it was done beautifully in this novel. Laurel’s voice describes some of her past experiences with May, some of them random, and some of them completely magical, which I think mirrors how relationships are in real life.

The Theme. 

One of the most important elements in a good book is the theme. This book really made me think, and caused me to view grief in a different way.


So….let me here your thoughts! What did you think about Love Letters to the Dead? If you’ve read this book, were there any specific quote(s) that resonated with you? What book have you read recently that you’ve found particularly quotable? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!:)

Review: Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

15507958.jpgMe Before You by Jojo Moyes

Published by Pamela Dorman Books/Viking on December 31, 2012

Pages: 369

Genre(s): Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Format: Hardcover, Library Copy

Trigger Warnings: Depression, Suicide

Rating: 5 stars!

Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.
What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane.
Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that.
What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time.
-Goodreads.com description

“You only get one life. It’s actually your duty to live it as fully as possible.”

Guys, I think I’m in love.

And no, I don’t mean with a boy. Though we all know about my seemingly endless list of book boyfriends…

No, I mean with a book. This book in particular.

I fell head-over-heels in love with the characters from the first page: Lou, with her crazy clothes and her bubbly personality; Will, with his snarky snide comments and relatable perspective on life; and even Mrs. Traynor, with her positive personality and her calm, focused demeanor. Sure, I’ve never (thankfully) gone through a situation like these characters did, but I could still relate to their thoughts and emotions through empathy.

“All I can say is that you make me… you make me into someone I couldn’t even imagine. You make me happy, even when you’re awful. I would rather be with you – even the you that you seem to think is diminished – than with anyone else in the world.”

I cried, probably harder than I ever have over a book in my life.

I laughed, so hard that other kids in my class starting looking at me strangely and asking if I was alright.

I shipped Will and Lou so hard.

This book is now definitely one of my favorite books of all time. I’m still in complete shock from finishing it last night (at midnight, if I may add. I hardly ever stay up too late reading books, so that just shows you how good this one was.). It changed my perspective on life-changing diseases, on love, on life. And I’m so incredibly thankful for that. This book engulfed and changed me in a way I never thought possible.

If you do decide to read this book, you should know that it deals with some very serious topics, such as depression and suicide. It was honestly the saddest book I’ve ever read, but somehow, at the same time, it was incredibly uplifting. This book caused me to think about things that I had never thought about before, and consider opinions about things I’ve never considered before. It completely destroyed me, but I loved every second of it.

“Hey Clark’, he said.’Tell me something good’. I stared out of the window at the bright-blue Swiss sky and I told him a story of two people. Two people who shouldn’t have met, and who didn’t like each other much when they did, but who found they were the only two people in the world who could possibly have understood each other. And I told him of the adventures they had, the places they had gone, and the things I had seen that I had never expected to. I conjured for him electric skies and iridescent seas and evenings full of laughter and silly jokes. I drew a world for him, a world far from a Swiss industrial estate, a world in which he was still somehow the person he had wanted to be. I drew the world he had created for me, full of wonder and possibility.”

This book is marketed as an Adult Romance novel, but honestly, it’s so much more than that. Despite the older characters and more mature themes, I think it reads more like a YA novel, which is probably part of the reason I loved it so much. This book is about romance, sure, but it’s about so much more than that. It’s about acceptance and grief and family and life and so many other important things. This book constantly reminded me of how unfair life can be sometimes, and how the most horrible things can happen to the most wonderful people. This book recognizes the importance of being able to get up and get on with your life, no matter how hard things seem. This book made me want to take risks. To give everyone a chance. To be thankful for what I have. To be a better, kinder, stronger person.

I apologize if this review was more of a ramble than a review, but I think you get the idea. I would recommend this book to anyone, of any age, but more specifically people that like books like All the Bright Places and Just One Day and The Perks of Being a Wallflower. No matter how old you are or what gender you are or what your favorite genre is, I encourage you to give this book a chance. You might just find yourself become a different person.

Untitled design 2.jpg

What did YOU think of Me Before You? Do you agree with me? Disagree? Do you think you might be interested in picking up this book in the future? OH, and is After You just as good? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments! 😀

7 Reasons Why I’d Recommend Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira to Anyone

18140047Love Letters To The Dead by Ava Dellaira

I first read Love Letters to the Dead three years ago, and I absolutely loved it. It was the book that first got me into YA Contemporary, which is now probably my favorite genre. Because of the fact that I read this book three years ago and I don’t remember very much of it, and because I’m too lazy to write a full review on it, I decided to compile a list of why I think everyone would benefit from reading this amazing book.


The Writing. 

Seriously, I can’t even begin to explain how gorgeous Dellaira’s prose is. I found myself scrambling throughout the entire book for my quote notebook and my highlighter. (Yes, I highlight my books. Don’t hate, okay? 😉 )

Laurel.

I love a narrator that I can really understand and sympathize with, and Laurel definitely has these qualities. Her voice was mature, but not too unrealistic, and her decisions and actions were often flawed, which I think is very important.

ALL THE FEELS. 

I know there’s people that specifically avoid books like this for that very reason, but I, particularly, happen to find myself attracted to tear-jerkers. Grief is a very difficult subject to write about, and Dellaira definitely handled it well. In my opinion, the best kind of books are the ones that really make you feel something.

The Unique Concept!

I mean, come on: who isn’t intrigued by the idea of writing letters to dead people? (Actually, I can think of a lot of people who wouldn’t be, but we’re just going to ignore that glaring detail, ‘kay?) This topic is really interesting to me, and it’s cool to see what a strong role all these people had in both Laurel’s and May’s lives. I also loved this unique format, because I normally don’t read books written in letter format, but I really enjoyed how Dellaira handled it.

The Romance.

I loved, loved, loved Laurel and Sky’s relationship! There was no insta-love, and I really enjoyed watching the characters gradually get to know each other. While I didn’t love Sky as a character, I loved to see him with Laurel.

May and Laurel’s Relationship.

Strong sister-sister relationships are something I’d love to see more of in YA, and it was done beautifully in this novel. Laurel’s voice describes some of her past experiences with May, some of them random, and some of them completely magical, which I think mirrors how it works in real life.

The Theme. 

One of the most important elements in a good book is the theme. This book really made me think, and caused me to view grief in a different way.


So….let me here your thoughts! What did you think about Love Letters to the Dead? If you’ve read this book, were there any specific quote(s) that resonated with you? What book have you read recently that you’ve found particularly quotable? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments! 🙂

Review: More Than This by Patrick Ness

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More Than This by Patrick Ness

Published by Walker Books Ltd on May 1th 2014

Pages: 480

Genre(s): YA Science Fiction, Dystopia, Mystery

Rating: 5 stars!

A boy drowns, desperate and alone in his final moments. He dies.

Then he wakes, naked and bruised and thirsty, but alive.

How can this be? And what is this strange deserted place?

As he struggles to understand what is happening, the boy dares to hope. Might this not be the end? Might there be more to this life, or perhaps this afterlife?

From multi-award-winning Patrick Ness comes one of the most provocative and moving novels of our time.

-Goodreads.com description

Oh my goodness gracious. I don’t even know where to begin.

This was one of the best books I’ve read in long time, and that’s seriously saying something, because I’ve been reading a lot of good books lately.

“Books are often described as ‘mind-blowing,’ but this is one of the few books in which, while reading it, I have exclaimed aloud, ‘Oh. My. God.’ on multiple occasions.” -John Green

I get you, John Green. I get you.

So basically: if you want to be completely mind-blown, confused out of your mind, horrified, creeped out, enlightened, and utterly heartbroken, read this book. Right. Now.

The Characters: Ness created freakishly realistic characters, all unique and flawed in their own way. Some people may argue that the characters were a little “too unique” to be realistic, and maybe this is true, but for me, the characters’ weird personality quirks and thoughts made the book so much more interesting and relatable.

The characters definitely made some mistakes and bad moves throughout the story, but that made me love them even more, if that makes any sense. The character development was incredible, and I loved watching them learn and grow throughout the story.

The Plot: More Than This is one of those books that have you on the edge of your seat the whole time, turning the pages as fast as you possibly can. This book is about existentialism, and explores the questions, “What is the meaning of life? What is reality? And, of course, is there more than this?” Ness offers such a unique perspective on this idea, and it made me stop and think, “Wait. What if this really is real? What if Ness was right and there really is more than this?” And I love books like that. Books that make you think, books that make you relate, books that offer a unique perspective on something that you had always thought about, but you never thought anyone else thought about. And that concept, in my eyes, is truly mind-boggling.

Simply put, this book is quite terrifying. Not in the way you’re thinking, with monsters or zombie apocalypses or whatnot. It makes you question the laws of humanity. Of reality. And that, on its own, is completely terrifying to me.

The Writing Style: I can’t even begin to tell you how amazing Ness’s writing is. His ability to describe characters’ thoughts and emotions with so much accuracy is seriously amazing. Writing realistic and relatable characters is a huge talent, and Ness definitely has it. The characters’ thoughts, emotions, and actions are described exactly how you would picture yourself reacting to that specific event in the story, if that makes any sense. His capability to put anyone’s basic thoughts and feelings into words is truly astounding.

Quotes:

“A book… it’s a world all on its own too. A world made of words, where you live for a while.”

***

“Real life is only ever just real life. Messy. What it means depends on how you look at it. The only thing you’ve got to do is find a way to live there.”

***

“We have to lie to ourselves to live. Otherwise, we’d go crazy.”

***

“You said we all want there to be more than this! Well, there’s always more than this. There’s always something you don’t know.”

***

“Haven’t you ever felt like there had to be more? Like there’s more out there somewhere, just beyond your grasp, if you could only get to it?”

Final Thought: I loved this book soooo much. It’s the kind of book that everyone can relate to one way or another, and that is truly amazing. It’s definitely one of my favorites of 2015! Also, if you’re still not sure about reading this book, I recommend you check out an excerpt of the first few chapters to give you a feel for the book. John Green says it best in the blurb: “Just read it.”

The Nostalgic Book Review Tag

Hi guys! I was recently tagged by Jenna @ Reading With Jenna to do my first book tag! Thanks so much, Jenna. If you haven’t checked her blog out yet, you should, because it’s awesome! The Nostalgic Book Review Tag was originally created by Read Think Ponder. 

Guidelines:

In this tag, you will be writing a review on a book that you read three or more years ago. You will be reviewing the book purely from memory.

  • Summary: Provide a summary of the book, including approximately when you read it, without consulting Google or the book itself.
  • Thoughts: Share your thoughts on the book, from memory
  • Epilogue: Look up a summary of the book and share your thoughts on what you did or didn’t remember/current feelings about the book.

Rules:

  • Remember to link back to Read Think Ponder’s post.
  • Acknowledge the person who tagged you in your post.
  • Tag other bloggers – it’s up to you how many!
  • Don’t look up the book when you are writing your Summary/Thoughts.

*****

3

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling

Published by Scholastic on November 1st 2003

Pages: 310

Genre(s): Children’s Fantasy

Rating: 5 stars

Summary:

Harry Potter is this ordinary boy who lives with his Uncle Vernon, Aunt Petunia, and step-brother Dudley, who are really mean to him and Harry has to live with them because both his parents died when he was a baby. Oh, and fun fact: he also has a lightening scar on his forehead. Which may or may not have to do with his parent’s deaths.

Anyway, on Harry’s eleventh birthday, he gets a letter addressed to him from a Wizarding School named “Hogwarts.” He doesn’t believe that he’s a wizard, obviously, until this half-giant named Hagrid comes to Harry’s house and brings him to Hogwarts. There, he meets Ron, Hermione, Draco Malfoy, and a variety of other characters. Harry learns all about the Wizarding World, like how to cast spells, make potions, and play Quidditch (I think I spelled that right). Harry discovers that there’s a vicious dog named Fluffy somewhere in Hogwarts, and finds out that it’s guarding something valuable or dangerous, so with the help of Ron and Hermione, they discover what Fluffy is hiding and (possibly?) save the whole school from being tragically murdered.

My Thoughts:

I remember when my mom came home from the library about three years ago with a stack of books, the one on the top labelled, “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” I was doubtful at first, because back then, (which really wasn’t too long ago) I wasn’t very interested in reading. I read the first chapter and loved it. Then the second, and I loved it even more. Harry Potter was a series that truly changed my life for the better. I read all seven books three times each, and literally read nothing else besides Harry Potter for about 10 months, claiming that NO BOOK THAT I WILL EVER READ WILL COME CLOSE to the magic that happened when I first read the series. But, guess what? It happened. I found series that I loved even more than Harry Potter.

So, seeing that this series changed my life and was the reason for me becoming a bookworm, it obviously deserves 5 stars. And I’m definitely not the only one who has been truly changed by this series.

So, if you haven’t read (or finished) this series yet, my advice to you is: GO READ IT RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!! (No pressure 😉 )

Since I read this book over three years ago, I don’t remember too much about it, like the writing style, characters, etc. I do, however, remember laughing out loud on multiple occasions. And wanting my very own pet hippogriff. Oh, and wanting to marry Harry Potter.

So, my final thought? Go read this book now. A solid 5 stars from me.

Epilogue:

Harry Potter thinks he is an ordinary boy. He lives with his Uncle Vernon, Aunt Petunia and cousin Dudley, who are mean to him and make him sleep in a cupboard under the stairs. (Dudley, however, has two bedrooms, one to sleep in and one for all his toys and games.) Then Harry starts receiving mysterious letters and his life is changed forever. He is whisked away by a beetle-eyed giant of a man and enrolled at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The reason: Harry Potter is a wizard! The first book in the “Harry Potter” series makes the perfect introduction to the world of Hogwarts.

-Goodreads.com description

Well, that summary didn’t give us much information. I was pretty spot-on in my summary, but I also neglected a semi-important detail: I, um, kinda watched the movie less than three years ago. That still counts, right?

I also forgot that Dudley is Harry’s cousin, not his step-brother. Which is pretty stupid of me, considering the fact that I remembered that he lived with his aunt and uncle.

Oh, and I also kinda forgot about the cupboard under the stairs. Which is an extremely important detail. Sorry, Harry Potter fans!

Well, that was fun! I hope you guys enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it! 😀 Thanks again, Jenna, for tagging me for my very first tag!

I Tag:

Sorry if I tag you and you don’t do tags, or if you’ve already done this tag. This is my first time doing a tag, so I’m just figuring things out! Also, if you want me to tag you in future tags, just let me know in the comments!