Audiobook Review: The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Title: The Sun Is Also a Star
Author: Nicola Yoon
Publisher: Delacorte Press/Listening Library
Publication date: November 1, 2016
Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
Source: Borrowed
Summary (via Goodreads):  Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

 

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

 

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

 

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I enjoyed the narrators, although it took a little while to get used to them. I liked the story, so giving this 4.5 out of 5 stars.

 

So this book is pretty much told over the course of one single day. I don’t want to say it featured insta-love, but given that fact, it kind of does. But honestly, the progression of Natasha and Daniel’s connection felt natural. The universe parts were a little off-putting to listen to, but it was nice seeing background, thoughts, histories, etc. for some secondary characters.

 

The ending was kind of disappointing, but then the epilogue made me happier. It was kind of open ended, but given what had already happened, I’d like to think these two individuals finally got their happy ending after all. I liked the mixed race aspect of it, and the touching upon the subject when they were out in public together.

 

Overall, I enjoyed this one. I’d highly recommend it. I just wished I’d loved it a little more to give it that final .5 stars. I think all the different characters maybe overwhelmed me a little too much while listening, and I wanted more focus on the two teens. I can’t wait for Nicola’s next book! You can check out my review of her debut book here.

 

Audiobook Review: Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley

Title: Graffiti Moon
Author: Cath Crowley
Publisher: Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group
Publication date: August 1, 2010
Length: 6 hrs and 5 mins
Source: Purchased
Summary (via Goodreads): Senior year is over, and Lucy has the perfect way to celebrate: tonight, she’s going to find Shadow, the mysterious graffiti artist whose work appears all over the city. He’s out there somewhere—spraying color, spraying birds and blue sky on the night—and Lucy knows a guy who paints like Shadow is someone she could fall for. Really fall for. Instead, Lucy’s stuck at a party with Ed, the guy she’s managed to avoid since the most awkward date of her life. But when Ed tells her he knows where to find Shadow, they’re suddenly on an all-night search around the city. And what Lucy can’t see is the one thing that’s right before her eyes.

 

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I’ve heard amazing things about this book, so I gave it a go during #ContemporaryAThon. I’m so glad I did. At the beginning I wasn’t too sure, but I ended up really enjoying this one. I’m giving it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

 

The narrators were good, although I didn’t like one as much as the others (Poet). I enjoyed the different POVs on this one, although some of the book was just repeating the same things from the next person’s perspective. Regardless, I still liked it a lot.

 

There’s not a ton of it out in the world, but graffiti artists in books are becoming more common lately. I think this is the third, or fourth, book I’ve read in a few years about them. I definitely can’t wait to try out this author’s other books, especially Words in Deep Blue. I’ve heard amazing things about that book as well!

 

I pretty much liked all the characters who we focused on throughout the book. They all felt real to me…like I could be friends with them. There’s not a ton of romance in this one, but it’s a great read nevertheless. And it’s not long, so you could easily finish it in a day if you wanted to/had the time.

 

ARC Review: Hooking Up by Helena Hunting

Title: Hooking Up
Author: Helena Hunting
Publisher: Swerve
Publication date: November 7, 2017
Pages: 444
Source: Netgalley
Summary (via Goodreads): Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.

 

Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.

 

They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.

 

Filled with hilariously scandalous situations and enough sexual chemistry to power an airplane from New York City to the South Pacific, Hooking Up is the next standalone, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy from Helena Hunting, the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series and Shacking Up.

 

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I really liked this one. It’s a longer book, but it flew by because I was invested in the characters. I enjoyed all of them, except the ones I was meant to hate. Thank you Netgalley for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I’m giving it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

 

I connected with Amalie’s character quite a bit. I felt heartbroken with her. Obviously based on the summary there’s cheating in this one. The progression between her and the mystery guy was believable, especially when we get to see both sides of their story. I’m not usually a huge dual POV fan, but this one was done well. I liked seeing his side of things A LOT.

 

The mystery guy was fabulous in my opinion. Can I have one of my very own? I’m not going to say his name, although it becomes very apparent who it will be at the beginning of the book. He’s definitely going on my book boyfriend list. Sexy, swoony, and super sweet when he wants to be. The perfect combination.

 

I loved the interactions between the main characters, and even loved some of the secondary characters like Ruby, and Bane. I found myself smiling and chuckling to myself several times while reading. I definitely need to see what else this author has written, because I want more. If you love romance, and don’t mind some cheating, then definitely check this one out!

 

Audiobook Review: When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Title: When Dimple Met Rishi
Author: Sandhya Menon
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication date: May 30, 2017
Length: 10 hrs and 46 mins
Source: Purchased
Summary (via Goodreads): Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?

 

Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.

 

The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?

 

Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.

 

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Another great contemporary romance for the books! I’d heard the narrators were good, so I gave the audiobook a try. I did like the narrators for the most part, although the guy doing a female’s voice isn’t the greatest. The story was interesting, and I found myself waiting to see what happened next. I’m giving this one 4.5 stars.

 

I really adored Rishi, except for like one thing he did. It’s pretty early into the book, so if you’ve read it, you’ll probably know what I’m talking about. He was pretty cute, and he was genuinely an overall good guy. He tried to support Dimple, he was actually chasing after her–wanting to woo her–which I liked. Not enough guys chase after girls! He’s definitely an addition to my book boyfriend list. I’d love to have a boyfriend like his thoughtful self.

 

Dimple, Dimple, Dimple…I liked her quite a bit. Some of her logic made me want to shake her, asking her what the heck. But besides that, I felt a kinship with her. She’s strong, opinionated, and smart. Yes to main characters like that! And as for the controversy, if you can call it that, surrounding this book, I think it’s blown out of proportion. And that’s all I’m saying about that.

 

The romance was cute, swoony, and made me smile. I loved some of the secondary characters. Mainly Ashish, although I did like both sets of parents to a certain extent. Celia kind of drive me nuts through at least half the book, along with some of the other coding contestants. It was nice to see a bit of the Indian culture scattered throughout the book, so props for that. Overall, I can’t wait to read more from this author!

 

ARC Review: The Way I Used to Be by Amber Smith

The Way I Used to Be

Title: The Way I Used to Be
Author: Amber Smith
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publication date: March 22, 2016
Pages: 384
Source: Edelweiss
Summary (via Goodreads): Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.

 

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

 

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year.

 

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This was a really good book that focused on a very emotional topic i.e. rape. There were parts that my heart felt like it was breaking while I was reading. Based on other’s reactions, I expected to cry a bit more. Nevertheless, I highly recommend this book to everyone. Thank you Edelweiss for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I gave this book 4.5 out of 5 stars.

 

This book was my choice for last week’s Waiting on Wednesday. It’s been on my radar for a while, so I’m glad I finally got around to reading it. The book was close to being 5 stars, but there were a few things that I questioned/didn’t particularly love. One thing I kept wondering about was why Eden was only 14 in her sophomore year of high school, and only 17 when she was in her senior year. Did she skip a year? Another thing I didn’t particularly love was how far Eden had “fallen” in a sense. But I could still understand why she did to a certain extent.

 

The summary and amazing cover is what made me first want to read the book. I thought it was interesting to cram all four years of high school into one book. Some years felt a little light compared to others, but overall it seemed like Amber did a great job spreading Eden’s life out through the years. Throughout reading, I felt bad for Eden and what she went through.

 

Another thing that disappointed me a little was that I wanted to see the a-hole responsible for the bad things sentenced and punished; just a mention of it would have given me satisfaction. I’m just glad that Amber wasn’t afraid to go to some dark places with the book, since rape is such a terrible issue our society faces. Eden made a lot of bad choices because of what happened to her, because she buried the horrible truth inside.

 

There wasn’t really romance in the book, because of what Eden endured. But I did like Josh’s character; he was one of the high points in the book for me. I mean besides Eden finally getting a bit of closure, and when she stood up for herself. Overall, the ending was good. I mostly made observations on Goodreads, but I did write down this line: “All these maybes swimming around my head make me think that “maybe” could just be another word for hope.”

 

Final note: A great book, that I highly recommend, if you’re not afraid of a slightly darker theme. I’m so glad I had a chance to read this one.

 4.5 stars