Long May She Reign

There were choices, and then there were choices. People could say “everything is a choice” with as much haughtiness and superiority as they liked, but that didn’t mean desperate people wouldn’t take a third option if they could.

Title: Long May She Reign

Author: Rhiannon Thomas

Series: Standalone

Publication: February 21st 2017 by HarperTeen

Pages: 422

Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads:

Freya was never meant be queen. Twenty third in line to the throne, she never dreamed of a life in the palace, and would much rather research in her laboratory than participate in the intrigues of court. However, when an extravagant banquet turns deadly and the king and those closest to him are poisoned, Freya suddenly finds herself on the throne.

Freya may have escaped the massacre, but she is far from safe. The nobles don’t respect her, her councillors want to control her, and with the mystery of who killed the king still unsolved, Freya knows that a single mistake could cost her the kingdom – and her life.

Freya is determined to survive, and that means uncovering the murderers herself. Until then, she can’t trust anyone. Not her advisors. Not the king’s dashing and enigmatic illegitimate son. Not even her own father, who always wanted the best for her, but also wanted more power for himself.

As Freya’s enemies close in and her loyalties are tested, she must decide if she is ready to rule and, if so, how far she is willing to go to keep the crown.


Thoughts and Feelings

How the book sounded:

What it felt like:

I had so much faith in this book… but, long story short, it let me down. Long May She Reign sounded as if it were going to be a mind boggling journey of medieval political warfare. The book, however, was completely off its rocker when it came to pacing, world building, and the characters themselves. I could bite at the premise. The 23rd in line getting the throne? I wanted to know why and how and how it was possibly going to work. Instead, I was given a long trek through a tar pit with minimal character development as a life line. It wasn’t worth it. Opps.

 

 

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When I Am Through With You

“This isn’t meant to be a confession. Not in any spiritual sense of the word. Yes, I’m in jail at the moment. I imagine I’ll be here for a long time, considering. But I’m not writing this down for absolution and I’m not seeking forgiveness, not even from myself. Because I’m not sorry for what I did to Rose. I’m just not. Not for any of it.”

Title: When I Am Through With You

Author: Stephanie Kuehn

Series: Standalone

Publication: August 1st 2017 by Dutton Books for Young Readers

Pages: 304

Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review

Summary from Goodreads:

Ben Gibson is many things, but he’s not sorry and he’s not a liar. He will tell you exactly about what happened on what started as a simple school camping trip in the mountains. About who lived and who died. About who killed and who had the best of intentions. But he’s going to tell you in his own time. Because after what happened on that mountain, time is the one thing he has plenty of.


A List of Thoughts:

  • I totally forgot how good Stephanie Kuehn is at being creepy.
  • Book starts off with a high school senior waiting to go on trial for murder… cue the doom music
  • The writing is infuriatingly addictive – You want to know what’s happening and why and Ben, the narrator, dangles it all just out of reach until he’s ready to tell you.
  • The characters are fantastically deep and multi-dimensional. Each individual has their own story, their own purpose, and their own key role in the narrative as it unfolds.
  • When I am Through With You pulls you in and makes you want to know why. You know what happened, but you want the why and the how and the when and ARGGGGH. So wonderful and frustrating.
  • This book keeps you on the edge of your seat even though you know the end game… or do you? IT’S SO GREAT, GUYS! I love it when books make me need to know what is going on. That’s evidence of a good story right then and there.

Basically, guys, read the book and strap yourselves in for one wild ride.


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The Disapperances

“What needs darkness to grow instead of light?” she asked me one night when we were younger.
“I give up,” I finally said.
“Isn’t it obvious?” Her eyes flashed more silver than gray. “Secrets”

Title: The Disappearances

Author: Emily Bain Murphy

Series: Standalone

Publication: July 4th 2017 by HMH Books for Young Readers

Pages: 400

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

What if the ordinary things in life suddenly…disappeared?

Aila Quinn’s mother, Juliet, has always been a mystery: vibrant yet guarded, she keeps her secrets beyond Aila’s reach. When Juliet dies, Aila and her younger brother Miles are sent to live in Sterling, a rural town far from home–and the place where Juliet grew up.

Sterling is a place with mysteries of its own. A place where the experiences that weave life together–scents of flowers and food, reflections from mirrors and lakes, even the ability to dream–vanish every seven years.

No one knows what caused these “Disappearances,” or what will slip away next. But Sterling always suspected that Juliet Quinn was somehow responsible–and Aila must bear the brunt of their blame while she follows the chain of literary clues her mother left behind. 

As the next Disappearance nears, Aila begins to unravel the dual mystery of why the Disappearances happen and who her mother truly was. One thing is clear: Sterling isn’t going to hold on to anyone’s secrets for long before it starts giving them up.


A Listical of Thoughts:

  • This book is impossible to describe. One can only experience it, trust me.
  • MAGICAL REALISM (Which isn’t a reason, but it really is)
  • Beautifully handled mystery. It doesn’t unfold all at once, and it’s hard to pick up on all the pieces which makes for some really wonderful surprises.
  • The writing is ridiculously gorgeous – seriously. The writing in this book is making me fall in love with magical realism all over again.
  • The Disappearances has it all: heartbreak, thrills, love, mystery, and laughter.
  • The world building alone was mind blowing – the small, little town was so compelling and it crafted the perfect atmosphere for the story.
  • SIBLING RELATIONSHIPS! Ugh. Well done.
  • How many times can I say magical before you read it?

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Breaking

Title: Burning

Author: Danielle Rollins

Series: Burning companion novel

Publication:  June 6th 2017 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Pages: 352

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Prep school gets a twist of supernatural suspense in this commercial YA thriller.

Charlotte has always been content in the shadow of her two best friends at the prestigious Underhill Preparatory Institute. Ariel is daring and mysterious. Devon is beautiful and brilliant. Although Charlotte never lived up to the standards of the school—or her demanding mother—her two best friends became the family she never had. When Ariel and Devon suddenly commit suicide within a month of each other, Charlotte refuses to accept it as a coincidence. But as the clues point to a dangerous secret about Underhill Prep, Charlotte is suddenly in over her head. There’s a reason the students of Underhill are so exceptional, and the people responsible are willing to kill to protect the truth…


Thoughts:

I don’t know what compelled me to request this book. I hated the first book, which isn’t a good start. I think it was the cover, or the synopsis, or maybe I just decided to give the companion novel the benefit of the doubt. Breaking, however, did not land high enough on my scale to either make me enjoy the book or save it from its predecessor’s fate. I didn’t like Breaking. I thought it was glamorizing suicide. I thought it was over-dramatic. But, most of all, I thought it lacked the umph necessary to pull itself from the muck.

This was basically my face when reading — enough said.

One of Us is Lying

I put my other hand in the air. “Bronwyn Rojas, I solemnly swear not to murder you today or at any point in the future. Deal?”

“You’re ridiculous,” she mutters, going even redder.

“It concerns me you’re avoiding a promise not to murder me.”

Title: One of Us is Lying

Author: Karen McManus

Series: Standalone

Publication: May 30th 2017 by Delacorte Press

Pages: 368

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Pay close attention and you might solve this.
On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.
Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.
Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.
Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.
Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.
And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High s notorious gossip app.
Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who s still on the loose?
Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.


A Listical of Thoughts:

  • New tagline: detention has never been so deadly. (No, seriously)

  • WHAT! I want to punch that teacher, I really, really do.
  • You know what they say about assuming guys, come on. Make an ass out of you and me, etc.
  • I quite like what I see about stereotypes not being stereotypes so far. Blondie is smart, Jock is not the jock at all, bad boy isn’t actually a jerk. Right on.

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Antisocial

Title: Antisocial

Author: Jillian Blake

Series: Standalone

Publication: May 16th 2017 by Delacorte Press

Pages: 256

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Senior spring at Alexandria Prep was supposed to be for sleeping through class and partying with friends. But for Anna Soler, it’s going to be a lonely road. She’s just been dumped by her gorgeous basketball star boyfriend—with no explanation. Anna’s closest friends, the real ones she abandoned while dating him, are ignoring her. The endearing boy she’s always had a complicated friendship with is almost too sympathetic.

But suddenly Anna isn’t the only one whose life has been upended. Someone is determined to knock the kings and queens of the school off their thrones: one by one, their phones get hacked and their personal messages and photos are leaked. At first it’s funny—people love watching the dirty private lives of those they envy become all too public.

Then the hacks escalate. Dark secrets are exposed, and lives are shattered. Chaos erupts at school. As Anna tries to save those she cares about most and to protect her own secrets, she begins to understand the reality of our always-connected lives:

Sometimes we share too much.


My Thoughts:

I’m just going to come right out and say it: I couldn’t finish the book. Now, some of you might wonder why I’m posting this even thought I didn’t read the whole thing, and the answer to that is simple – I still have the right to explain why I couldn’t finish it. Antisocial was marketed as a “whodunit set in the age of social media and the cloud, ” however, the book failed to capture my attention. I didn’t feel a need to find out what was going on, I didn’t care about the characters, the stakes were meh, and, most of all, the narrative voice shut me out of the story.

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