Friday, October 28, 2011

Review: Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Released: December 23rd, 2008
Published by: Walker Books for Young Readers
Series: Perfect Chemistry, Book 1
Star Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Gift
Page Amount: 360
Age Group: Young Adult

When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created “perfect” life is about to unravel before her eyes. She’s forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, and he is about to threaten everything she's worked so hard for—her flawless reputation, her relationship with her boyfriend, and the secret that her home life is anything but perfect. Alex is a bad boy and he knows it. So when he makes a bet with his friends to lure Brittany into his life, he thinks nothing of it. But soon Alex realizes Brittany is a real person with real problems, and suddenly the bet he made in arrogance turns into something much more. In a passionate story about looking beneath the surface, Simone Elkeles breaks through the stereotypes and barriers that threaten to keep Brittany and Alex apart.


I have heard many amazing things about this novel. I had started this novel before, but I put it down. I’m not one hundred percent why I actually put it down in the first place. I don’t think I was really getting into it. I don’t know what I was thinking! This book was amazing!

Brittany and Alex’s relationship developed nicely through the novel. It didn’t happen all too fast, nor did it happen at a strangely slow speed. I loved reading about their relationship and seeing how it progressed.
The supporting characters in this novel might possibly been the best thing about it. I loved Sierra, Brittany’s best friend. She was just so sassy and I just loved her. Probably because she has the same name as me. Also, Alex had some pretty awesome friends and family members also. I loved Alex’s two brothers, Carlos and Luis. They had the typical Latino family, large, loving and very protective.

I loved how Simone wrote Brittany’s family. If you didn’t know, Brittany’s older sister, Shelly, has mental issues. Things aren’t the greatest for her family. I loved how Simone wrote Brittany trying to pretend to have a perfect life when she really doesn’t. I think this is very relatable to a lot of people. I know for a fact that everyone wants to have a perfect life and a perfect family, when in reality that is almost impossible. Every family is going to have their issues. I found that interesting reading, I was interested in finding out how that was going to happen.

I’m really glad I gave this novel another shot. I really enjoyed it in the end, and I can’t wait to pick up the other two books.

Cover Comments

I’m not a huge fan of this cover. I usually love chick-lit covers, but I find this one a bit too cheese-y for my taste. Plus, I felt a bit weird having this at school. I got a lot of questions about it.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Peanut Butter Rhino by Vincent Andriani

Released: 1994
Published by: Scholastic
Series: Stand Alone
Star Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Kindergarten Classroom
Page Amount: 16
Age Group: Children’s


This is the perks of having a couple kindergarten buddies, I get to find cute picture books! I won’t write a review for every single one that we read, but I think I am going to start writing reviews for the good ones and the awful ones.

Since both Goodreads and Amazon fail to have a official summary about this adorable picture book… I do not have one, but I will do a quick run through of what its about.

This picture book is about this Rhino, whose name is… well… Rhino. He is heading out to lunch with his friend, um, well, I forget what kind of animal he was. But he looses his peanut butter sandwich on the way! He goes on a search to find his sandwich, and I’ll leave it at that.

My friend, Lauren is obsessed with rhinos and her and I share a buddy some Fridays. She saw this book and demanded that I read it to our buddy, erm, I mean, she demanded I read it to both them. Oh, and did I say that the rhino is purple and her favourite colour is purple.

This book was ADORABLE! Its very short, its only around 16 pages so it’s a very quick story, perfect for bedtime. I think this book could have used a little more, but that’s coming from the girl who reads 500 page books like their nothing.

Overall, this book was adorable and I would definitely read it again.

Cover Comments

I think this cover is pretty typical for a children’s books cover, but I love the purple rhino on it! Its super cute.

Review: Radiance by Alyson Noël

Released: August 31st, 2010
Published by: Square Fish
Series: Riley Bloom, Book One
Star Rating: 3 out of 5
Source: Chapter
Page Amount: 183
Age Group: Middle Grade


Riley has crossed the bridge into the afterlife—a place called Here, where time is always Now. She has picked up life where she left off when she was alive, living with her parents and dog in a nice house in a nice neighbourhood. When she’s summoned before The Council, she learns that the afterlife isn’t just an eternity of leisure. She’s been assigned a job, Soul Catcher, and a teacher, Bodhi, a possibly cute, seemingly nerdy boy who’s definitely hiding something. They return to earth together for Riley’s first assignment, a Radiant Boy who’s been haunting a castle in England for centuries. Many Soul Catchers have tried to get him to cross the bridge and failed. But all of that was before he met Riley . . .


I picked up RADIANCE with the thoughts of having a very short read. I was in the mood for a short, middle grade fantasy and I found this one on my sister’s bookshelf and decided to read it. I did get what I wanted, a short read, that was middle grade, and fantasy. I actually wasn’t too impressed with it.

I feel as though RADIANCE was too short for its own good. I felt as though the story was rushed along, as if Alyson Noel wanted the story to be over and done with as soon as possible. I feel as thought the story didn’t have enough time to develop, and that everything just felt like it was being dumped on you all at the same time.

The characters, in my opinion, we underdeveloped. Riley seemed to be less of a really human being and more of a paper cut out of a person. I didn’t enjoy that very much. Bohdi was cool, but I felt like I was missing a lot of his character in the novel. I felt like I needed so much more from them. They seemed very one-dimensional.

I didn't think this novel was a very good one. I think this book had so much potential, but it just let me down in the process. I don't believe I will be going on in the series, it all depends on whether I feel like reading the series or not.

Cover Comments

I think this cover is so beautiful and magical. I think it’s a perfect middle-grade fantasy cover. I love the dog on the cover, it reminds me of my doggy!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Introducing Banned Books Read-a-thon!

We all know that banned books week has come... and gone... but the banned books party has just begun! I have teamed up with my very good blogging friend Benji from The Non-Reluctant Reader to spread the love of banned books! We are doing this by... HOSTING A MONTH-LONG READ-A-THON! There are so many amazing books that have been challenged (The Hunger Games, Perks of Being a Wallflower, ect.) and we want more people to read them!

This read-a-thon will start on November 1st and will run for the entire month!

This read-a-thon will not only include just reviews of the AWESOME banned books we have read... there will also be awesome guest posts, giveaways, and interviews!

I am going to direct you to Benji's blog for most of the giveaway action, but I will be having a giveaway myself! You will have a chance to pick any banned book of your choice (that is under $10) off! I will make another post later for the giveaway, but I will run through the basic details about this giveaway...

  • I'm going to start with that you MUST be a follower of both mine and Benji's blogs. We are giving you an awesome book... we want some lovin' back!

  • I will be using a Mr. Linky. If you have a blog, link EVERY REVIEW of a banned book you have read. I will only count your entry if you read the book during the read-a-thon and if the review was posted during the read-a-thon.

  • If you don't have a blog but review books on Youtube, don't worry! If you link your youtube videos and your entry will be counted! Gotta spread the Youtube love!

I will do another post closer to November giving more details, but for now that is all I am going to tell you. I hope you will join us!