BOOK REVIEW: History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

Title: History Is All You Left Me

Author/s: Adam Silvera

Publication Date: January 17th 2017

Publisher: Soho Teen

Format: Paperback

Number of Pages: 320

Purchase at: Amazon

synopsis

“When Griffin’s first love and ex-boyfriend, Theo, dies in a drowning accident, his universe implodes. Even though Theo had moved to California for college and started seeing Jackson, Griffin never doubted Theo would come back to him when the time was right. But now, the future he’s been imagining for himself has gone far off course.

To make things worse, the only person who truly understands his heartache is Jackson. But no matter how much they open up to each other, Griffin’s downward spiral continues. He’s losing himself in his obsessive compulsions and destructive choices, and the secrets he’s been keeping are tearing him apart.

If Griffin is ever to rebuild his future, he must first confront his history, every last heartbreaking piece in the puzzle of his life.

My Thoughts

**Thank you Penguin Random House International for sending a copy of the book my way in exchange of an honest review, this however does not affect the content of my book review.**

Adam Silvera stabbed my heart a thousand times. This novel made me smile, laugh, mad, but most especially, it made me sad.

The story was told in alternating chapters between the history, and the present event. From the title per se, Griffin, kept on reminiscing everything that includes Theo. We were given enough reasons to be able to feel and understand his grief. And how hard it was for him to accept that the person whom he wants to spend his life with, broke his promise. The different timelines were interesting, for one makes Theo alive, and the other one just makes the reader realize that he is not.

I had a hard time liking the entire book. I was invested in the story, but at the same time, I hated how the main character annoy me. I WAS NOT A HUGE FAN OF GRIFFIN. Aside from the fact that he is a horny character, HE IS SELFISH. Still, I know that he’s just going through some things. Griffin has OCD, I can’t help but imagine how Griffin thinks, he has a distinct personality and somehow, it was handled perfectly. It may also be because I have never experienced grief, so I can’t relate that much to Griffin. That is what disappointed me, I failed to connect to the grieving character.

As for the plot, it was okay. I find it common but exciting. There was an event that I did not see coming. And when I say I did not see it, it was not even that obvious. You wouldn’t even think that that is possible. The complicated relationships played a huge part in me liking the plot of this novel.

Adam’s writing style is raw and simple, yet it made me feel as if every single thing is real.

A story about death, love, lost, grief and acceptance. A kind of book that I wanted to put down, but glad that I did not.

Rating

4stars


author

7577278

Adam Silvera was born and raised in the Bronx. He has worked in the publishing industry as a children’s bookseller, marketing assistant at a literary development company, and book reviewer of children’s and young adult novels. His debut novel, More Happy Than Not, received multiple starred reviews and is a New York Times bestseller, and Adam was selected as a Publishers Weekly Flying Start. He writes full-time in New York City and is tall for no reason

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BOOK REVIEW: What To Say Next by Julie Buxbaum #WTSNPhBlogTour

Title: What to Say Next

Author/s: Julie Buxbaum

Publication Date: July 11, 2017

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Format: Paperback

Number of Pages: 272

Purchase at: Amazon

synopsis

From the New York Times bestselling author of Tell Me Three Things comes a charming and poignant story about two struggling teenagers who find an unexpected connection just when they need it most. For fans of Sophie Kinsella, Jennifer Niven, and Rainbow Rowell.

Sometimes a new perspective is all that is needed to make sense of the world.

KIT: I don’t know why I decide not to sit with Annie and Violet at lunch. It feels like no one here gets what I’m going through. How could they? I don’t even understand.

DAVID: In the 622 days I’ve attended Mapleview High, Kit Lowell is the first person to sit at my lunch table. I mean, I’ve never once sat with someone until now. “So your dad is dead,” I say to Kit, because this is a fact I’ve recently learned about her. 

When an unlikely friendship is sparked between relatively popular Kit Lowell and socially isolated David Drucker, everyone is surprised, most of all Kit and David. Kit appreciates David’s blunt honesty—in fact, she finds it bizarrely refreshing. David welcomes Kit’s attention and her inquisitive nature. When she asks for his help figuring out the how and why of her dad’s tragic car accident, David is all in. But neither of them can predict what they’ll find. Can their friendship survive the truth?

My Thoughts

 I remember it too clearly, right after I finished reading Julie’s Tell Me Three Things, I said to myself: “Julia Buxbaum now belongs to my auto-buy-authors list.” 
And here it is, I’ve been given a chance to be a part of a PH Blog Tour, hosted by a fellow Filipino, and sponsored by Penguin Random House International. Thank you so much, guys!
This quick, sweet, and interesting read would have gotten a perfect 5 stars if it wasn’t for the fact that I thought the book centered on death, and I am soooo tired of stories with such subject. (I am not telling you that this novel is mainly about death)
I was once a high school student, and as everyone knows, being one is not a joke. Especially if you’re around people who are mean (the total jerk and bitches). You will be afraid to speak out. You wouldn’t like each other. You will want to be someone else. Wish that you’re in a different place. But that is high school, that is life. And you need to have courage to stand for yourself, because only you can.
I sometimes find myself connected to the characters. And that’s what makes me like this book even more, the connection. The diversity present in the novel, and the characters who have strong voices make the story stand out. I enjoyed reading about David’s qualities, as well as being inside his head, I liked that I got to learn more information about such mentality. 
Overall, this novel made it to my 2017-favorite-reads, and this has been another beautiful book written by such a lovely author.

Rating

5stars


author

Julie Buxbaum is A New York Times best selling author of Tell Me Three Things, her young adult debut, and the critically acclaimed novels The Opposite of Love and After You.  Her work has been translated into twenty-five languages. Julie’s writing has appeared in various publications, including The New York Times. She is a former lawyer and graduate of Harvard Law School and lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two young children, and an immortal goldfish.

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5 REASONS WHY YOU MUST READ KARMIC HEARTS BY JHING BAUTISTA (+deleted scene)

Title: Karmic Hearts

Author/s: Jhing Bautista

Publication Date: 2017

Publisher: Summit Books, Pop Fiction

Format: Paperback

Number of Pages: 241

Genre: YA Contemporary, Fantasy

synopsis

“Love. Magic. Fate. Best-selling romance novel author Karmina Joan writes about these things. She believes that every person has a purpose, that every soul has a destiny to fulfill. She thought hers was simply sharing her stories.

Her story unfolds with Cupid, the Angel of Love himself. He brings with him a mysterious vessel and a message from on high. It turns out Karmina has a bigger purpose after all—a mission that will make or break humanity as we know it.

As Cupid teaches her the tricks of his trade, Karmina unknowingly gives him something unexpected in return— something the angel of love will find oddly familiar. This may become the one flaw in an otherwise perfect plan that destiny had in store for them.

Does love truly conquer all or are there limits to what humanity can do in the name of love? Witness as Karmina struggles to find the answers before time runs out on true love.

My Thoughts

**Thank you Pop Fiction for hosting this wonderful blog tour for Ms. Jhing’s Karmic Hearts. I’m also grateful to those who are behind all of this. Thank you so much for this opportunity.**

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5 REASONS WHY YOU MUST READ KARMIC HEARTS BY JHING BAUTISTA

 

1. THE MALE PROTAGONIST IS SWOON-WORTHY 

Some of you may have known Cupid from a classic mythology. He is the considered as the god of love, affection, and desire. This Cupid from Karmic Hearts is the Angel of Love. A sweet, charming, yet a serious one, a character that you wouldn’t get enough. I’m quite sure I’ve been swooning the entire time I’m reading this book.

2. STRONG CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT WAS PRESENTED

Now let’s talk about the female protagonist, Karmina Joan. I was impressed by how the author handled her. Karmina is a kind of character who reflects real life people. An imperfect one. She started off as someone who seems lost, someone who doesn’t know what to do, and as the story progresses, so does she. Her decisions became well thought of. It was also pretty obvious that she learned a lot.

3. IT HAS AN ASTOUNDING CONCEPT AND PREMISE

The idea of this novel, is forbidden love. Thus, the growing love between Cupid and Karmina. This kind of concept isn’t new to me, but the fact that it’s between an Angel who’s famous to a lot of readers is concerned, and a typical innocent girl who was suddenly tasked to do something, is what intrigued me. The author dug down enough interesting information, and found something unique that will capture her audiences. Next is the premise. The main characters have their own goals, as well as their personal fears. There were serious obstacles that rose between them. Which made the book more interesting due to the fact that it’s fiction but the message it conveys is realistic. IT WAS ALL AMAZINGLY DONE.

4. THIS IS A BOOK ABOUT LOVE, FATE, AND DESTINY

Who wouldn’t love to read a novel like this one? I will be honest, I am someone who doesn’t believe that what happens in our life is beyond our control. For me, we always have to have the right answer and to do the right thing. And love? Due to past experiences I decided to not think of it as such a powerful feeling. BUT I DON’T KNOW WHAT THIS BOOK DID TO ME. WHAT ARE WORDS!

5. FAITH AND LOVE’S IMPORTANCE WAS MANIFESTED

I saw myself in Karmina, being someone who doesn’t usually pray. There are parts where Cupid asked her to do so. Told her to be sincere and humble when doing it. It made me realize that having faith to someone is important, it gives you hope, strength, and will. It’s like saying if you aren’t afraid, you can do anything. And that I believing in what-could-be’s aren’t bad.

Ms. Jhing Bautista’s writing was exquisite. I enjoyed reading her book. I almost forgot how fun it is to read pop-fiction novels. How such books make me feel. Now I think I’m gonna read more.

Rating

4stars

KARMIC HEARTS’ DELETED SCENE 

(The word file is available at the end of this part)

‘Cupid! Nasaan ka ba?!’

Hinanap ko sya sa buong bakuran namin, sunod sa bahay… hindi ko pa rin sya makita. I took a shot and went near the old well again. Baka nandun sya.

True enough, he was there. He was sitting on the well’s rim.

“Hoy! Nandito ka lang pala! Kagabi pa kita hinahanap!” He was busily plucking the petals off a sunflower. Tinabihan ko sya. “Hoy…” untag ko. I bumped my shoulder on his. Hindi nya ako pinansin.

“So ganyan? Hindi ka mamamansin?”

“Leave me alone,” he muttered.

“Is it about Joseph?” I sighed as he threw the last petal on the ground. “Look, I didn’t invite him here. Kusa syang sumunod. Hindi ko naman alam na susundan nya ako eh,” paliwanag ko sa kanya.

“It doesn’t matter.”

“I swear! I didn’t plan this. Sure, I gave him directions on how to get here pero—“

“Why are you explaining? I’m not asking you,” he said coldly.

“Ano ba’ng problema mo ha? Bakit ka ba nagkakaganyan?” Naiinis na ‘ko ha. Kahapon pa ‘ko nag-aalala sa kanya tapos ganyan pa sya sa ‘kin?

He looked at me then. His stare is icy. “Your boyfriend is coming this way.”

True enough, nakita ko si Joseph mula sa malayo. Hinahanap yata ako. Agad akong kumapit kay Cupid. Alam kong aalis na naman ‘to eh. I saw Joseph stop. Tapos saka ito nagpalinga-linga. Hindi na ako nakikita.

He then gave up looking and retraced his steps back to my relatives.

 

 

Joseph Marco is Wattpad’s version of Carlo (from the KH book). In the original story, he became Mina’s love interest who made Cupid super jealous resulting to an early confession. I decided to remove the JM – KJ love affair because it’s not necessary to the story. And as you may have noticed, Mina and Cupid were able to hold hands, touch, in the old version. I removed that as well and replaced it with this ‘no touching whatsoever’ thing. It just made the story more frustrating, and I love to frustrate my readers. Haha!

KARMIC HEARTS DELETED SCENE – Amidst the Pages (1)

KARMIC HEARTS BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE:

SCHED

THANK YOU SO MUCH!


author

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UNBOXING: “A Sparkle of Hope” Pouts and Fluffs Loot Box

Pouts and Fluffs Loot Box

Hello there! I am happy to share with you guys that for the first time since I started being interested on bookish subscription boxes, I finally decided to order a bookish subscription box from the country I live in. I settled on having my first order at Pouts and Fluffs Loot Box.

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Pouts and Fluffs Loot Box is a monthly Young-Adult Book Subscription Box that is based in the Philippines. To know more about the story of the subscription box, click here. Inside the subscription box is a YA book, bookish merchandise, and other printed bookish items.

 


May 2017 “A Sparkle of Hope”

“Don’t ever think that you are just a speck of matter prancing across he universe. You’re worth it. You can shine more vibrantly than the brightest star in the galaxy. Don’t lose hope. Everything’s getting better if you chose to see the light and slowly get off from the darkness.” – Mr. Pouts

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Mr. Pouts and Ms. Fluffs gave us a lot of sneak peeks so it made me more curious about what’s inside the box. And instead of having 8 items inside the box, they decided to add 2 more so it’s a total of 10 items!


What are the items inside Pouts and Fluffs’ MAY 2017 Loot Box?

  • A magnetic bookmark by @camlin_ph ; exclusively designed by Mr. Pouts for #pandaofthemonth
  • A bookish Button Pin by @poutsandfluffs.ph
  • A Pouts and Fluffs lootbox main quote button pin

Magnetic bookmark, bookish button pins, I’ve been dying to have these bookish items. Finally, they are now in my hands!

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  • A Beauty and the Beast’s “Rose in Dome Glass” Replica
  • A Beauty and the Beast-themed Temporary Tattoo

Have you watched the movie? read the book? IT WAS MAGICAL! Though the temporary tattoo is beautiful, it’s big, and I don’t know if where am I going to use it.

  • An ACOWAR-themed Poster designed by Mr. Pouts
  • A galaxy-inspired bathbomb by @balneumph

A BATHBOMB! I wouldn’t use it yet, for the reason that we don’t have a bathtub. Might as well go to a hotel again! AND OMG LOOK AT THAT POSTER! MR. POUTS HAS TALENT. IT IS A M A Z I N G!

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  • An ACOWAR-inspired Bookish Scented Candle “Starfall” by @thebookflame

If you are a friend of mine, a personal or a social media friend, you must know that I badly want a bookish candle. HERE IT IS NOW! I ALREADY HAVE ONE! And it was inspired by my most anticipated read this year!

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Seeing the featured book made me jump in joy! Literally! I was just thinking about reading this book and now it’s here! Please click this or the book’s title above so you will be directed to Goodreads. Though to be honest, I kinda expected ACOWAR hehe. Anyway, NO REGRETS! I TRULY LOVED THE FEATURED BOOK! I can’t wait to read it.

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and for the final look…

Pouts and Fluff’s MAY 2017 Loot Box:

“A Sparkle of Hope”

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**A star-themed vial keychain made by Ms. Fluffs is also included in the box, unfortunately, my youngest cousin decided to take it and bought it home. I screamed at her over the phone. Thankfully, I managed to take a picture of the items inside the box before she stole the vial.**

Overall, for a starter, they did a pretty well job, especially when it comes to interacting with their customers. I totally recommend this to my fellow bookish people.

I want to thank Pouts and Fluffs Loot Box for making my experience of unboxing a siubscription box worthwhile.

I really had fun sharing the lootbox with you guys! ‘Til my next unboxing!


Pouts and Fluff’s JUNE 2017 theme is

“Down the Memory Lane”

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Do you love that rustic vibe? The aura of the cabin in the middle of the woods? How about some vintage stuff? Well, this box is for you! Join us as we go back to the past and travel time with our June 2017 Box theme “Down the Memory Lane”. This box is also perfect for Potterheads as you will see maybe 1-3 Harry Potter merch inside this wondrous boxes. You might want a sweet treat straight from Hogsmead 😉

Order your box now at our website (link in bio). As of this month, we decided to collaborate a book or movie fandom merch every month alongside our book boxes’ theme. This May 2017 you will see two book/movie fandom merch inside our boxes (BATB and ACOWAR). So what book or movie fandom do you want next? Comment down below.

We do apologize for the delay on some updates for the last few days. We have a very hectic and crazy schedule lately between the preparation of the boxes’ contents and our work. We hope you guys understand 😞
Going back, shipping of May boxes this weekend! Who’s excited? I AM. 😂🙌 I can’t wait for my box haha 😍
Should you have any questions and inquiries, feel free to DM us. Stay tuned for more good news, sweethearts! 😊💕

For more information, please do visit Pouts and Fluffs

also, for information regarding the above mentioned shops, you can just click the usernames.

THANK YOU!


 

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ARC REVIEW: I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo

Title: I Believe in a Thing Called Love

Author/s: Maurene Goo

Publication Date: May 30th 2017

Publisher: by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

Format: Paperback

Number of Pages: 336

Purchase at: Amazon

synopsis

“Desi Lee knows how carburetors work. She learned CPR at the age of five. As a high school senior, she has never missed a day of school and has never had a B in her entire life. She’s for sure going to Stanford. But—she’s never had a boyfriend. In fact, she’s a disaster in romance, a clumsy, stammering humiliation-magnet whose botched attempts at flirting have become legendary with her friends. So when the hottest human specimen to have ever lived walks into her life one day, Desi decides to tackle her flirting failures with the same zest she’s applied to everything else in her life. She finds her answer in the Korean dramas her father has been obsessively watching for years—where the hapless heroine always seems to end up in the arms of her true love by episode ten. It’s a simple formula, and Desi is a quick study. Armed with her “K Drama Rules for True Love,” Desi goes after the moody, elusive artist Luca Drakos—and boat rescues, love triangles, and fake car crashes ensue. But when the fun and games turn to true feels, Desi finds out that real love is about way more than just drama.

My Thoughts

**Thank you MacMillan International for the review copy of this book.**

Being an Asian and a K-Drama fan, being approved of having to review this book brought me a-100% joy! Reading the blurb, I immediately knew that I’d love the MC, a Korean-American teenage girl with a cool father who loves watching K-Dramas… Or would I?

Meet Desi Lee, an outstanding student, a goal-setter, a complete control freak, she excels at anything except love. Then she met the artist, Luca Drakos (what a cool name right?) and she’d do anything to make the boy fall in love with her. Of course, with the help of her listed steps or Rules on How to Achieve True Love.

A round of applause for the well-made diversity. Racial and sexual diversity are present in this book. Stating the fact that the two MCs are people of colors and that Desi’s best friend is a lesbian.

Desi Lee has such a strong voice, with her being all nerdy, wanting to be in-control, setting goals, having directions in life, and planning her future. But I hated how she thought that she can manipulate EVERYTHING, I mean, who would want their feelings to be manipulated? I hated how she purposely played with Luca’s feelings, like Luca’s just another science experiment (which he was) and another trophy to put on her collection.

I also want to mention the difference between Desi and Luca’s father. Desi being really close to hers supporting her, her dad being all vocal and witty around her. While Luca has a father who always have him arrested, grounds him, and all. Makes the readers realize that parents do have different ways on raising their children.

This is my first time reading a book written by Maurene Goo. Her exceptional and brilliant writing made me want to read more of her works.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who loved Jenny Han’s To All The Boys I’ve Love Before.

 

Goodreads Review Click This Link

Rating

6171cf4f-39cf-4de2-b9c6-bebe8ed9657e


author

6549377Maurene Goo grew up in a Los Angeles suburb surrounded by floral wallpaper and piles of books. She studied communication at UC San Diego and then later received a Masters in publishing, writing, and literature at Emerson College. Before publishing her first book, Since You Asked, she worked in both textbook and art book publishing. She also has very strong feelings about tacos and houseplants and lives in Los Angeles

 


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BOOK REVIEW: The Careful Undressing of Love by Corey Ann Haydu

Title: The Careful Undressing of Love

Author/s: Corey Ann Haydu

Publication Date: January 31st 2017

Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers

Format: Paperback

Number of Pages: 288

Purchase at: Amazon

Synopsis

“Everyone who really knows Brooklyn knows Devonairre Street girls are different. They’re the ones you shouldn’t fall in love with. The ones with the curse. The ones who can get you killed.

Lorna Ryder is a Devonairre Street girl, and for years, paying lip service to the curse has been the small price of living in a neighborhood full of memories of her father, one of the thousands killed five years earlier in the 2001 Times Square Bombing. Then her best friend’s boyfriend is killed, and suddenly a city paralyzed by dread of another terrorist attack is obsessed with Devonairre Street and the price of falling in love.

Set in an America where recent history has followed a different path

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I am grateful that The Careful Undressing of Love by Corey Ann Haydu was sent to me.
The novel’s synopsis hooked me. I mean, who wouldn’t want a book about girls who shouldn’t fall in love with a boy? Because if so happens, the boy they love will die.
Another magical realism! I am starting to be a fan of this genre. I love how odd and mysterious the book is, the curses, their beliefs. Problem is it became TOO mysterious, there wasn’t even a history or background about the curse, why there’s a curse, when did it start, etc. ACUOL has a nice plot if only the author did let it reach its potential. 
This novel is indeed about a careful undressing of such a powerful feeling, love. What is love per se, and all its worth. The book also focused on grief and how to cope. 
I didn’t feel any connection to characters. And I was disappointed for the whole story centered to Lorna, her grief and her beliefs. It seemed like the author forgot about the other girls who were also supposed to be in pain, grieving, questioning love and their curse. But each character has a loud voice screaming things about the importance of friendship.
I’d like to mention two of the things that made me rate this book three stars. First is the diversity. The characters have different nationalities as well as sexualities. Next in line is the gorgeous prose, one full of feelings and emotions.
Though the ending left me feeling unsatisfied, I would still say that this book deserves to be read especially by those who love mysterious magical realisms, that my dearies, is if one is open to a lot of questions

Rating

3stars


Author

5414574

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BOOK REVIEW: City of Saints and Thieves by Natalie Anderson

Title: City of Saints and Thieves

Author/s: Natalie Anderson

Publication Date: January 24th 2017

Publisher: by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

Format: Paperback

Number of Pages: 401

Purchase at: Amazon

Synopsis

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo meets Gone Girl in this enthralling YA murder mystery set in Kenya.

In the shadows of Sangui City, there lives a girl who doesn’t exist. After fleeing the Congo as refugees, Tina and her mother arrived in Kenya looking for the chance to build a new life and home. Her mother quickly found work as a maid for a prominent family, headed by Roland Greyhill, one of the city’s most respected business leaders. But Tina soon learns that the Greyhill fortune was made from a life of corruption and crime. So when her mother is found shot to death in Mr. Greyhill’s personal study, she knows exactly who’s behind it.

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**Thank you Penguin Random House International for providing an ARC of this title in exchange of an honest review.**

Please take note thar this review is based on an ARC.

A YA novel I never thought I’d love!

What had me hooked was the first rule in being a thief. “If you’re going to be a thief, the first thing you need to know is that you don’t exist.”

The unique setting quite fascinated me. I now have enough knowledge about Kenya. I mean, if I am not mistaken not much books are set in such place. Tina lives in such a complicated yet interesting place, Congo. The originality caught my whole attention and made my reading experience more enjoyable.

I liked the characters, mostly Tina. She’s someone who’s determined, strongly-motivated, someone who knows exactly what she wants. A brave and smart young girl. Together with her is Michael and Boyboy, both played a really important role in the the story. They were also one my favorites!

There were serious issues tackled in the story like human rights, politics, economics are also included, as well as inequalities. Each has strong and unimaginable impact.

The pacing of the story is what annoyed me, most of the time the pacing is stead-fast, while some times, it’s too slow. Though it didn’t affect my reading, I just you guys to know just in case some of you don’t like alternated pacing.

Never have I ever read a thriller book with a revenge plot mixed with street gangs. One which has relevance in our current situations. The story was too thrilling, too unpredictable, I was often at the edge of my sit. The storyline kept me guessing, thank goodness I was brought to a few new places.

Overall, City of Saints and Thieves successfully pleased me. I want to read more diverse books like this. Highly recommended if you want something different.

Rating

4stars


Author

14746831

Natalie C. Anderson is a writer and international development professional living in Boston, Massachusetts. She has spent the last decade working with NGOs and the UN on refugee relief and development, mainly in Africa. She was selected as the 2014-2015 Associates of the Boston Public Library Children’s Writer in Residence, where she wrote her debut novel, City of Saints and Thieves.


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