Welcome to yAdult Review, a space where two girls review novels from across the genres, from YA and MG, to fantasy and sci-fi, to historical fiction and mystery, with a sprinkling of non-fiction too. We hope you enjoy your stay here as much as we enjoy ours.

Tag Archives: 2 star

25467698The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry
Release Date: January 26, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Source: ALAMW2016
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

Natalie Cleary must risk her future and leap blindly into a vast unknown for the chance to build a new world with the boy she loves.

Natalie’s last summer in her small Kentucky hometown is off to a magical start… until she starts seeing the “wrong things.” They’re just momentary glimpses at first—her front door is red instead of its usual green, there’s a pre-school where the garden store should be. But then her whole town disappears for hours, fading away into rolling hills and grazing buffalo, and Nat knows something isn’t right.

That’s when she gets a visit from the kind but mysterious apparition she calls “Grandmother,” who tells her: “You have three months to save him.” The next night, under the stadium lights of the high school football field, she meets a beautiful boy named Beau, and it’s as if time just stops and nothing exists. Nothing, except Natalie and Beau.

Emily Henry’s stunning debut novel is Friday Night Lights meets The Time Traveler’s Wife, and perfectly captures those bittersweet months after high school, when we dream not only of the future, but of all the roads and paths we’ve left untaken – Goodreads

Review:

I struggled with this book. According to goodreads, The Love That Split the World took me over a week to read this book, for most this is probably normal, but for someone who reads a book in about 3 days, this is very unusual and for as long as it took, I did note a lot of passages. Which would usually lead one to believe I enjoyed the book.

And I did? I don’t know to be honest. Months later I’m still confused about my feelings on this book. I found the Native American aspect to be inappropriately used and not needed. I feel that Henry could have made a better story if she would have stopped bringing up the Native American aspect, particularly because it was not used well, at all. There was also instalove and comments about how the other was just so pretty. For Henry’s debut book I feel like she tried too hard and threw too many things into this novel. From info dumping to mentions something once and never again it just…didn’t work.

Here’s the thing, I wanted to enjoy this book. I did. I even thought I was going to enjoy it until I sat on the story and realized the problematic aspects of the book bothered me too much. (Of course, that’s not to say I don’t enjoy problematic things. I do. I love many problematic things, unfortunately this was not a book that worked for me.)



25517283The Heir and the Spare
by Emily Albright
Release Date: January 18, 2016
Publisher: Merit Press
Source: Library
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

Family can be complicated. Especially when skeletons from the past pop up unexpectedly. For American Evie Gray, finding out her deceased mother had a secret identity, and not one of the caped crusader variety, was quite the surprise. Evie’s mom had a secret life before she was even born, one that involved tiaras.

In this modern day fairytale, Evie is on a path to figure out who her mom really was, while discovering for herself what the future will hold. Charged with her late mother’s letters, Evie embarks on a quest into her past. The first item on the list is to attend Oxford, her mom’s alma mater. There, Evie stumbles upon a real life prince charming, Edmund Stuart the second Prince of England, who is all too happy to be the counterpart to her damsel in distress.

Evie can’t resist her growing attraction to Edmund as they spend more time together trying to unravel the clues her mother left behind. But, when doubts arise as to whether or not Edmund could ever be with an untitled American, what really ends up unraveling is Evie’s heart. When Evie uncovers all the facts about her mom’s former life, she realizes her mom’s past can open doors she never dreamed possible, doors that can help her be with Edmund. But, with everything now unveiled, Evie starts to crack under the pressure of new family responsibilities and the realization that her perfect prince may want her for all the wrong reasons.– Goodreads

Review:

The Heir and the Spare of the making of everything that I loved in a story. Hell, it sounded like The Prince and Me, a movie which I adored. Yet, unfortunately The Heir and the Spare generally fell flat for me.I spent a good portion of this book just blah with it. I wanted from the characters. Evie and Edmund were just flat and blah, which shouldn’t have been possible. With Evie having a mysterious background and Edmund being in line for the throne this book should have been thrilling and had me engrossed with a romantic love story.

I’m not saying that the story is bad. It’s not! I was just fairly bored. The lead character, Evie, was 19 turning 20, but I felt more like she was 19 turning 15. She hurled insults and was a general asshole to anyone who flirted with Edmund (even when they weren’t dating). I think we were supposed to see Evie as clever, but I never once found her clever, or relatable. And yes, I understand that not all characters need to be relatable, but I like there to be something that has me going with the story. Unfortunately in The Heir and the Spare that particular something was lacking; even a British Prince wasn’t doing the pull for me. (And yes, I can’t believe I just wrote that — with a straight face no less).

There was a constant roller coaster of emotions being thrown around in The Heir and the Spare: an attempted rape, shame of flirtatious girls, girl hate and and poor characterization.



15806868Towering
 by Alex Flinn
Release Date: May 14, 2013
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: e-book from library
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

High in my tower I sit. I watch the birds fly below, the clouds float above, and the tall green forest stretch to places I might never see.

Mama, who isn’t my mother, has kept me hidden away for many years. My only companions, besides Mama, are my books—great adventures, mysteries, and romances that I long to make my reality. But I know that no one will come to save me—my life is not a fairy tale after all.

Well, at least no one has come so far. Recently, my hair has started to grow rapidly and it’s now long enough to reach the bottom of the tower from my window. I’ve also had the strangest dreams of a beautiful green-eyed man.

When Mama isn’t around, I plan my escape, even if it’s just for a little while. There’s something—maybe someone—waiting for me out there and it won’t find me if I’m trapped here Towering above it all. – Goodreads

Review:

I am here for your YA fairytale re-tellings. Give me all of them! This is why I was so excited to read Towering by Alex Flinn. Told in multiple POVs Towering is the story of, Rachel, who is stuck in a tower, Wyatt who is dealing with his own demons and Danielle’s diary entries. From Long Island, Wyatt is forced to move up north, to live in a small no-named town and live, with who we are lead to believe, is the town crazy, Ms. Greenwood. It’s a dark and drafty old house and the first thing he sees is a ghost.

You came here to get away from your problems, but instead, you’re stuck with an old lady and her long-dead ghosts” — pg 57, ebook

And that’s when we find out Wyatt’s demon is the fact that his best friend has recently died. His best friend has recently died and now he’s stuck in a home with, currently, no working wi-fi and cell reception. Wyatt isn’t too sure if he’s better off here.

“If you’re not the hero, does that make you a villain?” — pg 175, ebook

To be honest, there was nothing overly exciting about this book. What kept me hanging on was ultimately how the three POVs looped and weaved together. What ultimately happened was one of my least favorite YA tropes–instalove. (YAY!)

“I loved him. Though we had barely met, there was some power greater than me, greater than all, that bound him to me” — pg 260, ebook.

Ultimately this book fell flat for me. I wanted to love it. But in the end it was to convoluted for me to buy into the plot line, or the love story.



24751478Soundless
by Richelle Mead
Release Date: November 10, 2015
Publisher:  Razorbill
Source: ALA2015
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

In a village without sound…

For as long as Fei can remember, no one in her village has been able to hear. Rocky terrain and frequent avalanches make it impossible to leave the village, so Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom.

When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink. Many go hungry. Fei and all the people she loves are plunged into crisis, with nothing to look forward to but darkness and starvation.

One girl hears a call to action…

Until one night, Fei is awoken by a searing noise. Sound becomes her weapon.

She sets out to uncover what’s happened to her and to fight the dangers threatening her village. A handsome miner with a revolutionary spirit accompanies Fei on her quest, bringing with him new risks and the possibility of romance. They embark on a majestic journey from the peak of their jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiguo, where a startling truth will change their lives forever…

And unlocks a power that will save her people. – Goodreads

Review:

I did not know it was possible to be so underwhelmed by a book and I was. There was nothing special or spectacular about this book. I thought it would be nice to read a Mead book outside of the Vampire Academy world, but reading Soundless made me think maybe I should just stay inside the Vampire Academy world.

In the Soundless world there are three classes: the miners, the artists, the beggers. That’s it. Everyone falls into one of these three categories. In reality, everyone falls into one of the first two categories and as soon as someone goes blind, they become beggers. Everyone is also deaf, they have no idea how they lost their ability to hear, but it is what everyone knows.

I also am not sure why in Soundless there is a such a focus on Asian culture in the beginning of this novel because it doesn’t come up ever again. Soundless was dry and bland. There was no humor. There was no character development, or world building. I had come to expect more from Mead and this makes me wonder about those expectations.

 


hannaThe Wizard’s Promise (The Hanna Duology #1) by Cassandra Rose Clarke
Release Date: May 6, 2014
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
Source: Library
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

All Hanna Euli wants is to become a proper witch – but unfortunately, she’s stuck as an apprentice to a grumpy fisherman. When their boat gets caught up in a mysterious storm and blown wildly off course, Hanna finds herself further away from home than she’s ever been before.

As she tries to get back, she learns there may be more to her apprentice master than she realized, especially when a mysterious, beautiful, and very non-human boy begins following her through the ocean, claiming that he needs Hanna’s help. – Goodreads

Review:
This duo of books is a companion series (a sequel of sorts) to the Assassin’s Curse series. Hanna is named after Ananna, but due to northern accents, no one can pronounce her true name, rendering it Hanna instead. Hanna’s mother is a former pirate, her father is a fisherman, and Hanna’s dream is to train as a witch, though for now, she’s apprenticed to a thoroughly boring fisherman named Kolur. Or she thinks it’s boring anyway, until Kolur takes her on a trip far out of her comfort zone. He is also extremely reticent, telling Hanna next to nothing about their journey, neither purpose nor destination. One night, Hanna meets Isolfr, a strange, otherworldly creature human in shape, but able to swim in the frigid waters of the north. Isolfr needs her help, and Hanna’s loyalties are to be tested.

Hanna can be pretty obnoxious, but she has some reason to be, considering she’s been lied to and almost killed on this trip. All she wants to do is go home. So when their ship gets blown off course, way off course, Hanna decides to leave Kolur and Frida and strike out on her own. She is working on a fishing boat, saving money to go home, making friends with the couple renting the houseboat next to her’s, when something terrible happens. Hanna realizes that she is not going to be able to escape this mission she’s been forced to go on, but she still insists on doing it her own way.

I found this book slow and boring. I liked the world and the magic and the people, but nothing happens for so much of it. Just Hanna slogging along, Hanna being lonely, Hanna being surly, Hanna eating fish with her neighbors. Not much happens. It’s like this book suffers from second book syndrome somehow, even though it’s the first. It took me forever to finish this one. I’m so sad that Strange Chemistry shut down and I won’t be able to read the next one though. That is a real shame.


23569053Winter (The Lunar Chronicles #4) by Marissa Meyer
Release Date: November 10, 2015
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Source: Audio from Library!
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

Princess Winter is admired by the Lunar people for her grace and kindness, and despite the scars that mar her face, her beauty is said to be even more breathtaking than that of her stepmother, Queen Levana.

Winter despises her stepmother, and knows Levana won’t approve of her feelings for her childhood friend—the handsome palace guard, Jacin. But Winter isn’t as weak as Levana believes her to be and she’s been undermining her stepmother’s wishes for years. Together with the cyborg mechanic, Cinder, and her allies, Winter might even have the power to launch a revolution and win a war that’s been raging for far too long.

Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters? – Goodreads

Review:

This is a hard book to review due to the fact that it is the fourth book in a series. Can you review a fourth book without discussing the first three? Winter is the epic conclusion to The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. It is the final book that ties together all of those loose ends that didn’t seem important throughout the first three books. Those little moments now became important. While I wished I had time to do a re-read before I read Winter that just wasn’t possible; thankfully Meyer as usual does an excellent job of recapping without feeling like I was recapped.

What is daunting about Winter is the size. As an audiobook it is 21 segments –most YA books are 9-12. This is a beast that while listening to, I thought was never going to end. It constantly  Even though the physical book is smaller than Cress due to page thickness. Publishing! Crazy world!

The thing with Winter and The Lunar Chronicles is that I struggled with most of the series. I did not get the flailing and the hype that the blogging community did. I found Winter to be a solid end to a meh series. While the first book, Cinder, set off this series for me, I found the middle two (Scarlet and Cress– three –if you count Fairest) to be..okay. They were action filled, but I found them to be a bit long and tedious and Winter at almost 900 pages is a reminder of that. While listening to an audiobook, at 2x, I was shocked to find out that I was still moving through the book slowly At points I thought I was close to done I was moving along at a glacious pace.While Meyer is a strong writer and doesn’t hide from twists, turns, and action I do believe that a good portion of the novel could have been cut without missing anything.

This isn’t to say that I didn’t enjoy the book. I did! But like the previous books, I expected more from it. I honestly think the hype of the book got to me. I really wish I could enjoy this series as much as everyone else does.I do find it to be a fitting end to the series that I came to read, but still I expected something..more.


18982137The Trouble with Destiny by Lauren Morrill
Release Date: December 8, 2015
Publisher: Delacorte
Source: Netgalley
Rating: starstarblank_starblank_starblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey…

With her trusty baton and six insanely organized clipboards, drum major Liza Sanders is about to take Destiny by storm—the boat, that is. When Liza discovered that her beloved band was losing funding, she found Destiny, a luxury cruise ship complete with pools, midnight chocolate buffets, and a $25,000 spring break talent show prize.

Liza can’t imagine senior year without the band, and nothing will distract her from achieving victory. She’s therefore not interested when her old camp crush, Lenny, shows up on board, looking shockingly hipster-hot. And she’s especially not interested in Russ, the probably-as-dumb-as-he-is-cute prankster jock whose ex, Demi, happens be Liza’s ex–best friend and leader of the Athenas, a show choir that’s the band’s greatest competition.

But it’s not going to be smooth sailing. After the Destiny breaks down, all of Liza’s best-laid plans start to go awry. Liza likes to think of herself as an expert at almost everything, but when it comes to love, she’s about to find herself lost at sea– Goodreads

Review:
The Trouble with Destiny was an exhausting book. The main character is an anxious filled band leader who I thought I would love, but instead felt “meh” about for 80% of the book. I have no problem with anxiety driven characters. I adore Cath in Fangirl. Heck, I am my own anxiety driven character (my friends can all agree to this). But something about Liza didn’t work for me. I spent a good portion of this book wanting to tell her to breathe. And to be honest with people. And to breathe.

Liza believed carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders would save the world. Which I understand. I get that side of Liza. But I have friends who tell me to breathe. And to relax. But no one told Liza to pause. Breathe. Enjoy the fact that she’s on a cruise ship with some of her favorite people!

One thing that Morrill did that I adored was the fact that not everything is how it seems. And that sometimes it’s important to see it from someone else’s point of view. Something that needs to be discussed and thought about more.

I thought I would love and adore The Trouble with Destiny. I was mistaken! Although I’m a fan of Morrill’s previous work; The Trouble with Destiny fell extremely flat for me. From one note characters, to stereotypes I already have read enough of The Trouble with Destiny was not the cruise ship fun I thought it would be. It was a Final Destination ride I was dying to get off of.