Diversity, friendships, and more! | Dear future authors: pretty please include more of these things in your books (!!!)

Hey everyone! I hope you guys are all doing well. ❤ My blogging schedule is as unpredictable as ever, but I’m back today with another post; this time with a list of things I wish I could see more in the books I read. In this case, it would be YA, but honestly, no matter what the intended audience is, we should have more of these things. YA books are great, believe me, they are. Are they perfect? No, of course not. Every book has its set of problems. However, there are things that totally deserve more attention and should totally appear more in books, which is what I want to discuss today. Let’s do this.

Things I Wish Were in More Books

1. Girl + Girl Friendships.

(Aka fromances.* Just fyi.) Beth’s wonderful post talking about girl on girl hate in YA books inspired this one–it’s something that was always in the back of my mind, but reading this post made me realize how little female friendships there are in YA fiction. We have our bromances, which are AMAZING, but the fact that I cannot think of many examples of  YA books with strong female friendships is SO problematic. So many of YA’s readers are female, and no matter what the age, every single one of them deserves to recognize and relate, and fall in love with a strong female friendship because that is part of our lives. Female friendships exist, and are so, so important. They are a HUGE part of my own life–and I will bet yours as well–and it makes me so sad that I don’t see many books reflecting that in the lives of their characters. Female friendships (fromances!!) can be one of the strongest bonds ever, just as much as the bromances or the romantic ships. They are one of the most prevalent relationships in the lives of girls everywhere, so why are the majority of our YA books lacking this friendship in the characters’ life?

*Hey, there are bromances, why can’t there be fromances? THIS IS NOW A THING. Do not judge.

2. Male-female friendships.

Continuing on the theme of friendships, I would totally love to see more male-female friendships. I recently read The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, featuring an AMAZING, completely platonic, strong friendship between Sal, the main character, and his best friend, Sam. Their friendship was SO sweet and I loved it so much–but I’ll save that for the upcoming review. Point is: yes, there are definitely boy-girl friendships already that are great. But it only goes on to show that they should totally be in more books as well, because hey! News flash: boys and girls can be just friends. Everyone knows this. It’s always great to see a developed, boy-girl friendship in books to chip away at the idea that boys and girls can only be interested in each other romantically. And honestly, what harm is there melting a reader’s heart with a beautiful friendship? Friendships, in general, are awesome, and we totally need more of them. 

3. FOOD.

This might be affected by the fact that I am very very hungry right now. But nonetheless!! FOOD. Oh my gosh. So important, guys. I am always mildly shocked in the back of my mind when I read a book, and the characters go so long without food. No mention of it, nothing. There are books who do, definitely (and they understand me on a spiritual level*), but it is something that could totally be added to more books. See, food makes a book a) more realistic, b) more relatable c) more eat-able (book talks about food = book becomes said food?? Bet that’s how it works.) and d) overall more interesting because FOOD. I mean, I probably wouldn’t remember any of the descriptions of food past two seconds, but it’s in the moment, you know?

Ugh, this isn’t helping my hunger at all. I need to go restock my snack storage. Brb.

4. All the family.

CAN WE HAVE MORE FAMILY PLEASE? Thankfully I’m not dying of deprivation (yet) thanks to the select few wonderful books that have amazing moms and dads and siblings. ❤ Seriously, those books are actually the best and especially special because there are such few healthy familial relationships in YA, which is why they’re on this list. A healthy father-child bond or mother-child bond, or parents-child bond can be so impactful and so wonderful to read about. Is having parents who are present, caring, concerned and responsible too much to ask for? It really shouldn’t be. I get that, in many circumstances, absentee parents are a device for sympathy, plot, development, and who knows what else, but that does not mean we can’t have books with realistic and healthy portrayals of family because that is equally important in our lives and totally deserves more rep.

5. Little to no romance.

I’m aware of the fact that there ARE in fact many books without romance, don’t worry. I mean, I could list a few, definitely not as many as I would like, though. Because as much as I love romance in YA books (Ships yay), sometimes it’s nice to have books without, seeing how a) it gives us a break between all the emotional havoc our hearts go through the other 99% of the time, b) shows that romance isn’t everything! Because it really isn’t. See above friendships and family. ❤ and c) who has time for romance, anyway? Jk. But I definitely wouldn’t mind reading more books with little to no romance! Because hey, it’s all a part of life. Realistically, a lot of people don’t meet their one and only love in high school anyway aha. 😛

6. Slow-burn romance.

Does it make sense that I put books with no romance and books with slow-burn romance? Shhhhhhh, of course it does. Just as much as no romance books are important, I doubt YA fiction is going to kill off romance easily, which, I don’t mind because there are some really great books out there with them! Honestly, there is an endless array of books to choose in the YA romance area. But, specifically, I love slow-burns. Fantasy novels are usually quite good at this, and their romance doesn’t completely overwhelm the story, which is great for readers not looking only for romance. It would be great for more contemporary novels to have a developed and slow-burn romance too! Insta-love, for example, is not something I’m a fan of in books, which seems to appear a lot, which is why I’m advocating for more developed romances because those are so great to read, and offer a lot more to the characters and plot-wise in my opinion.

7. DIVERSITY.

This is probably the one most everyone will agree on, which is great because diversity is so important. Whether it be featuring POCs, people of the LQBT+ community, people suffering from mental illness, people with disabilities, people of different religions, etc. There are so many different people around the world–and, not just cis, white people featured in so many YA books. I have nothing against those characters, but it is a disservice to the beauty of this world, and the many wonderful, wonderful people who don’t get that much representation in the books they read. We aren’t all the same, and getting those books with characters who are similar to you can be so empowering. However, I firmly believe that if you are going to include diverse characters in a book, please, please, you have a responsibility to do it right. YA fiction, is, of course, fiction, but when it comes to diversity and representation, whether it be a race of people, or people with disabilities, or the LGBT+ community, or a culture, or anything, it’s more offensive and disrespectful to misrepresent them, including them in books but having them reduced to clichés, stereotypes. Which, is another reason why the #ownvoices movement is so great. Diversity, fortunately, is something that is being publicized more than ever, which means there are TONS of amazing diverse books out there (YAY), but I will forever be an advocate for more diverse books because it’s something that should be the norm, as well as celebrated. Why do I want–need–more (accurately represented) diverse books? For all the people who deserve to see themselves represented. For everyone so they can be educated on all the different people of the world. For everyone because they are important. Case in point: We all need diverse books. We will never not need more of them. ❤


WOW that last paragraph was longer than I expected. There is so much to say on the topic! But anyway. Friendships, diversity, family, food, these are all things I adore to see in books, things that are SO important to me and so passionate about. Can we please have more of them in YA?! Pretty please??

Sincerely, 

a deprived bookworm

Until the Next Meal, Analee

P.S. Until my plea is answered, let’s discuss! Don’t leave me hanging here, I spent a lot of time on this. 😛 Which of these do you want to see more of? What do you think about the whole diversity debacle? Any other things you want to see in YA books? ❤

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins | Book Review

Guess what book I FINALLY read?? Yep, Anna and the French Kiss! I kind of put down the book I was reading the other day, and was just like, okay, yep, Valentine’s Day is coming and so I’m just going to read it. I wasn’t planning on reading much of it, just start it, but… I kind of ended up finishing it within a day?? Whoops! And I know I’m behind on several other reviews of previous books I’ve read but since Valentine’s Day was yesterday I thought it’s only fitting to do a review on a book whose cover and synopsis literally screams romance. 😉

Anna & the French KissAnna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Publication Date: July 16th 2013
Publisher: Speak
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, Young-Adult
Series Status: Anna and the French Kiss #1
Page Count: 372
Source & Format: Owned, Paperback
Critical Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Can Anna find love in the City of Light?

Anna is happy in Atlanta. She has a loyal best friend and a crush on her coworker at the movie theater, who is just starting to return her affection. So she’s less than thrilled when her father decides to send her to a boarding school in Paris for her senior year.

But despite not speaking a word of French, Anna meets some cool new people, including the handsome Étienne St. Clair, who quickly becomes her best friend. Unfortunately, he’s taken —and Anna might be, too. Will a year of romantic near misses end with the French kiss she’s waiting for?

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So basically, the gist of my thoughts for the majority of this book comprised of me going ‘Ohmygodthisbookissoadorable!!!’ after which I kind of die of cuteness overload. It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows though; there were some parts where I was incredibly put off by the characters, but entertainment-wise, this was really good! Let me go into more detail, though, because I think that might be helpful. Right…On to it!

Anna and the French Kiss book review 2

Things I loved

  • Omg Étienne…I finally see what everyone has been squealing about. He’s so adorable!! Where can I find a guy like this?? Cute accent, check. Sweet and thoughtful, check. Funny, check. Seriously, it’s these bookish characters which makes a girl like me mourn for the fact that in real life I have no chance of finding a guy like this… XD
  • Also did I mention Étienne??
  • Oh, and pro-friendship, anybody? I loved the friendship thing between Meredith, Rashmi, Josh, Étienne and, Anna. Loved it! It was so positive and showed the ups and downs and obstacles that a friend group has to deal with, you know?
  • Ehhh, what else… oh! Anna was delightfully perfect for this book. I mean, yes, to be honest, I was SO DONE with her near 80% through the book, because kshfklsdhnfo, ugh no spoilers, but seriously. I just was turned off by the fact that she refused to LISTEN before making judgements (among other things). Gah, I already had to deal with that in another book I read previously, and.. just no. Also there was the fact that so much heart-ache could’ve been prevented if she had only been more perceptive! Ughh that was annoying, but I don’t begrudge her too much, because I do realize that without it all, the story would’ve been concluded much faster. XD And in the end, I appreciated how Perkins kept Anna’s character consistent; she was a high school girl, with flaws and occasional lack of judgement—what else to say? She was a very well-written character, in my opinion.
  • Aaaaaand, no insta-love! I’ll admit, I was on the fence for quite some time, unable to decide if it was a case of insta-love or not, but, I have deduced that it’s more of a case of attracted-at-first-sight instead of love at first sight, if you know what I mean. Anna and Étienne started off as friends, and it simply progressed from there, I guess. There was development to their romance and friendship, you know? So YAY.
  • I got to visit PARIS!!! Okay, not literally (duh) but oh how I wish it was! It would’ve been so amazing… but as it is, reading Anna and the French Kiss was  lovely in the sense that I got to visit and tour Paris along with Anna as  she visited many landmarks and touristic spots. The writing was fabulous for this aspect. Plus, it was with Étienne too, so…. Another positive, haha.
  • Also, the cover looks so pretty on my shelves! Eep! I wish I had it in hardcover though. Oh well. And yes, this is a pro. Because #bookwormreasoning

Things I DIDN’T love

  • Despite what I mentioned of Anna being well-written, she still managed to get on my nerves. I mentioned why a little up in the pros; her decisions and attitude could really be a turn-off. It didn’t get so bad, that I had to, say, throw the book and stomp around angrily, but it was bothersome all the same.
  • Useless characters?? Okay, ‘useless’ might be too strong of a word, but… I wasn’t the biggest fan of Dave—or Toph, for that matter. At times it just felt like they were there to add more drama and ansgt… and perhaps maybe that’s why they were there, but.. meh. I didn’t care about them that much, especially Dave.
  • The storyline kind of dragged on a bit more than was needed. I suppose this isn’t such a big deal, really, but to some it might definitely be a bigger issue. It’s just that with all the drama surrounding Anna and Étienne as they go back and forth between figuring out the lines between friendship and love interests and whatnot, the plot was (deliberately?) extended. You choose if that’s a good thing or not!

Overall…

I’m so glad I decided to pick this up! It was the perfect read for Valentine’s Day, and what’s more, it was totally adorable! If you’ve been procrastinating reading this book for whatever reason, I definitely recommend you give this a shot, unless you’re completely against contemporary romance. Though I will warn you all; although I personally enjoyed Anna, she’s not going to be everyone’s favourite! But chances are you’ll fall for Étienne, so I guess it’s even. But that’s besides the point. 😉 Anna and the French Kiss was an incredibly entertaining read and I can’t wait to read the next books! Although from what I understand the other two are companion novels… not quite sure how that’ll turn out, but fingers crossed!


Sooo I think that’s enough talking for now. Let us discuss! Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Have any of you actually ever visited Paris? (If you have, I would be insanely jealous omg.) Did anyone else fall in love with Etienne as I did?! Can you tolerate and enjoy a book even if you dislike the characters? Whatever thoughts you have, feel free to leave ’em below!

Hope you’re enjoying your Monday! Also, happy Family Day for those of you who live in a Canadian province! 😉

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Types of Male Love Interests | Happy Valentine’s Day!!

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY! Woot woot! I hope, if you’re with your special (wink wink) friend you’re enjoying yourself, or, if you’re all alone this V-Day, you’re surrounded by books (or family, but, you know, booooooks) because what else is better to be surrounded with? But anyway. I was going to do a bookish OTPs post today, but seeing how tons of other bloggers have covered that area already in the past few days, I’ve decided to do a different kind of post and talk about my types of book boyfriends I have met in books! I was debating over this and types of bookish couples/girl friends, but in the end I went with the book boyfriends. (But if you’d like a ‘types of bookish couples or girl friends’, let me know!) Let’s do this!

Ty[es of Male Love Interests

1. The player/bad-boy.

Kind of touched on this, I think, the other day when I talked about romance tropes we love or hate, but it’s definitely worth mentioning again! You know the type; he’s trouble, and the girl knows it. Oftentimes it concludes with said bad-boy changing his ways because he fell in love with the more ‘goodie two-shoes’ type girl. The player is a very common and popular type of book boyfriend; and if you’re read at least a few YA books, you know what I’m talking about. I’d offer examples, but… this one’s everywhere.

2. The possessive one.

*Cough* Edward Cullen *Cough* Just kidding… but not. If you’ve read or heard of Twilight, it’s definitely one of the biggest example of the possessive boyfriend! Whether you like this type of boyfriend or not is completely a personal preference, but it’s undeniable that this type is quite popular in YA! As far as I’ve noticed, anyway. The possessive boyfriend is the one who’s also usually VERY protective and rages upon anyone who threatens to touch or hurt his love.

3. The anti-hero.

This kind of ties into the first one, but at the same time, doesn’t. I’m talking more about the villainous sort of love interest, the one with a darker agenda, if you know what I mean. This type is most common in YA fantasy, dystopia, and the like, and can be very popular among readers! #Darkling Basically the opposite of a hero (duh, hence being called the ANTI-hero).

4. The best friend boyfriend.

This particular boyfriend is not only a love interest for the character, but is also a very close friend. I don’t know, this seems kind of uncommon sometimes? Like, sure, the usual book boyfriends are a good friend too, but.. there’s a few that are, like… I don’t know how to explain this without sounding completely bonkers, but basically, isn’t just a boyfriend, you know? He’s there to be a friend, too. (Which, to be honest, is what all boyfriends should be, but I guess I can’t say.)

5. The Prince Charming.

This type of boyfriend can be put two ways: one, he’s the type who always saves the day—the hero. Two, he generally always needs someone to save, protect. There’s a reason why the Prince Charming is associated with damsels! True to its name, the prince Charming-type boyfriend is often, well, charming, and, as I mentioned, saves the day or needs someone to save. To be honest, I’m kind of on the fence over how much I like this type. I don’t know. Also, is it weird that I kind of picture the Prince Charming in Shrek?? LOL that’s so random.

6. The hero.

I suppose this can be taken for Prince Charming, but… I don’t think so. The hero, to me, is the type who’s, you know, very loyal and brave, and strong. He’s willing to do what’s right for the one he loves (or whoever he’s loyal to). It’s more different than the Prince Charming, since.. Gah this is turning out to be the most confusing thing ever. But where the Prince Charming is sometimes, well, not as honorable as he seems, perhaps, the hero, is… the hero. I don’t think there’s anymore to add other than that.

7. The sweet and romantic.

Ahhh let’s bring out the awkward and adorable love interests! To be honest I kind of love this type alongside the bad-boy one—opposites, much? I know, lol. The sweet and romantic boyfriend, well, is exactly what he sounds like! These are the types that are sweet, thoughtful and (usually) very understanding. Oftentimes I also see this type with the best friend boyfriend—and it totally makes sense why! Étienne from Anna and the French Kiss and Simon from Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda both come to mind for this one!

8. The funny one.

By the way, by ‘the funny one’ I mean, you know, the type who’s almost always cracking jokes and smiling, not, like, the ‘weird one’ or something, though I suppose it could be that too. XD This type of boyfriend is often very charming, albeit a bit silly at times, due to his very charming and happy demeanor. I kind of love this type, because, who doesn’t like a good laugh?? Characters like Percy or Leo, can both apply for this one, don’t you think?


So that’s it for this little post about types of male love interests! I know there are probably a lot more I haven’t touched on, so feel free to add any type of love interests YOU’VE encountered! Also don’t forget to mention; which types of these do you love? Which do you dislike? Also, let me know if you’d still like a bookish OTP post, or types of bookish couples. HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!! *Virtual hug*

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray | Book Review

Ten Thousand Skies Above YouTen Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray

4 stars

Publication Date: November 3rd 2015
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre(s): Sci-fi, Romance, Young-Adult
Series Status: Firebird #2
Page Count: 424
Source & Format: Owned, Paperback

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Ever since she used the Firebird, her parents’ invention, to cross into alternate dimensions, Marguerite has caught the attention of enemies who will do anything to force her into helping them dominate the multiverse—even hurting the people she loves. She resists until her boyfriend, Paul, is attacked and his consciousness scattered across multiple dimensions.

Marguerite has no choice but to search for each splinter of Paul’s soul. The hunt sends her racing through a war-torn San Francisco, the criminal underworld of New York City, and a glittering Paris where another Marguerite hides a shocking secret. Each world brings Marguerite one step closer to rescuing Paul. But with each trial she faces, she begins to question the destiny she thought they shared.

The second book in the Firebird trilogy, Ten Thousand Skies Above You features Claudia Gray’s lush, romantic language and smart, exciting action, and will have readers clamoring for the next book.

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Hello bookworms! It’s been such a long time since I posted any reviews here on my blog—I guess I just can’t keep up in writing reviews when I have a huge snowball of them! But that’s not the point here. Today I’m here to share my thoughts on Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray! Apart from the fact that the cover for this is absolutely gorgeous (!!!), I had been really looking forward to reading this one ever since I finished A Thousand Pieces of You last year.

So, I finally read it—and I have to say, I really enjoyed this one! I’d go so far as to say that I liked it even more than the first one. There’s a lot that I really enjoyed in this one, but there were also a few little things where I was a bit more frowny. I’ve decided to deviate from my usual reviewing style to make my thoughts more clear. 😉 (I’d love to know what you think!) SO LET’S DO THIS. For all of you who haven’t read the first book, don’t worry ’cause this review is completely spoiler-free!

Ten Thousand Skies Above You Design
Design credit goes to Freepik; edits were done by me.

Why there was lots of devouring and happiness

  • DIMENSION TRAVELLING! It was one of my favourite parts of the first book, and I think I loved it even more in this one. Not only is simply THE IDEA of it so cool, it made for such an entertaining story and was executed very well.
  • It made me THINK. And I know some of you may be groaning right now, but I praise Claudia Gray for including interesting themes and bringing forth conflicting questions throughout the story. Things like the more negative side to dimensional travels and the ethical issues it brings forth are an added plus for the story’s value and complexity. Three-cheers for thought-provoking books!
  • This book had such an amazing bromance going on. Seriously. I loved Theo and Paul’s brotherly relationship so much! The love Theo had for Paul, and Paul for Theo, was so sweet. We really need more bromances around like this!
  • I didn’t want to put it down. (Then again, I almost never want to put any book down, but shhhh.) Seriously though, it was addictive. Hardly a boring moment—as far as I remember, at least. And seeing how I read this not-too-long-ago, I’m pretty sure I remember correctly. LOL.
  • Two words; Plot. Twists. They were everywhere! (Or maybe it just felt like they were everywhere, but SHHHH.) In some cases plot twists can become annoying and predictable, but this was not one of those cases.
  • This book is not as much romance-focused as the previous book. There is still plenty of romance, but unlike the first book where a lot of it was focused on only the romance, now there is additional focus on other things too, which was appreciated! (Although, you have been warned; there is a love triangle.)
  • THE COVER. I’d read any book with that cover. Just kidding! Mostly. Kind of. #Judgeabookbyitscover But seriously though, the cover is beautiful—and the story inside was just as good!

Where Frowns and Raised Eyebrows Emerged

  • I was lost for quite some time when starting the book, especially when it talked about events that happened in the previous book—although that’s more of my fault. I definitely recommend skimming or re-reading A Thousand Pieces of You and jog your memory of what happened in it, (if you don’t remember much of it) before reading the sequel!
  • While Marguerite’s character could’ve been worse, she still wasn’t such a great one—but that’s just my opinion. To be honest, I didn’t enjoy the book any less because of it, but certain times, I just couldn’t take her seriously and would have to fight the urge to roll my eyes. Other times, she was just so repetitive, that it became quite bothersome. Thankfully I still ended up enjoying the book despite these parts!
  • Maybe it’s because of the main character’s lack of advanced scientific understanding (she’s more of an artsy person), but it felt like a lot of things surrounding the scientific aspect of the novel were left unanswered. Or things that weren’t explained that well or didn’t make sense. I don’t know. I just hope these are all cleared up in the last book!

Overall…

An entertaining novel! I was hooked from start to finish (even if I was lost for some parts) and there were lots of aspects to it that I enjoyed. I really loved reading about Theo and Paul’s bromance, as well as the dimension travelling aspect. (IT’S MAGIC. But not.) Would I recommend it? For people who are uncertain about continuing the series, well, it depends on what exactly was your problem with the first book, but generally, I’d say the second one was better than the first, so… it’s up to you now. For all of you who haven’t read it yet, I recommend you to do so! Unless you’re REALLY against romance in sci-fi or something, this series is a pretty good one.


SO. Now it’s your turn to talk! (Because this can’t just be a one-sided conversation!) Tell me, what are your thoughts on this book and/or series? And tell me which book cover do you like better, in this series?! Because #important. ALSO. Let me know what your thoughts are on not-so-likeable characters! Do you condemn the book if they annoy you? LET US TALK. 🙂

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Forget Tomorrow by Pintip Dunn | ARC Book Review

Forget TomorrowForget Tomorrow by Pintip Dunn

4 stars

Publication Date: November 3rd 2015
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Genre(s): Sci-fi, Dystopia, Young-Adult
Series Status: Forget Tomorrow Series #1
Page Count: 400
Source & Format: Publisher via Netgalley, ebook

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Imagine a world where your destiny has already been decided…by your future self.

It’s Callie’s seventeenth birthday and, like everyone else, she’s eagerly awaiting her vision―a memory sent back in time to sculpt each citizen into the person they’re meant to be. A world-class swimmer. A renowned scientist.

Or in Callie’s case, a criminal.

In her vision, she sees herself murdering her gifted younger sister. Before she can process what it means, Callie is arrested and placed in Limbo―a hellish prison for those destined to break the law. With the help of her childhood crush, Logan, a boy she hasn’t spoken to in five years, she escapes.

But on the run from her future, as well as the government, Callie sets in motion a chain of events that she hopes will change her fate. If not, she must figure out how to protect her sister from the biggest threat of all—Callie, herself.

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Hey everyone! In case you didn’t catch it from the title, today I’m going to be sharing my thoughts on Forget Tomorrow by Pintip Dunn! (Thank you Netgalley and Entangled Teen for sending me this e-ARC for review! Please note: All quotes mentioned in this review are from the uncorrected proof and may be changed in the final copy—which was released 2 days ago, by the way.)

In a nutshell; a dystopian and sci-fi novel set in a futuristic world, Forget Tomorrow shares refreshing ideas with characters I found to be engaging and relatively realistic. If you’re looking for a unique YA dystopian novel, or a well-written novel from a debut author, I recommend giving Forget Tomorrow a shot!

Plot

In Forget Tomorrow, we are introduced to a world where the future of every citizen is dependent on their future memory that they receive when they’re 17. In most cases citizens are fortunate to see themselves in the career they’re interested in, etc. But then there are the cases where the future memory shows them committing a crime, and as a result, they are locked up. For me, personally, I really liked this concept, as not only was it a pretty unique idea in itself, the plot allowed for several intriguing issues to be addressed and Dunn made it so that the story line was gripping and generally memorable. I’m going to mention here though that I’ve read from several other reviewers that this book was very similar to Minority Report, and that if you have watched MR, Forget Tomorrow might not have as much of an impact on you. Having said that, for me, the plot of this novel was definitely one of the things I liked a lot.

As a side note, Dunn also wastes no time in introducing readers to the characters and her world, and that was refreshing. I mean, the first few pages are pretty normal, but it doesn’t take long for the story to really get going, and you all probably know by now that I often enjoy books that don’t take too long with intros. (Not that I dislike any books that do.)  Right about 30 pages in I was already hooked and put in a heart-thumping scene which kick-started emotional investment in the story. And the cliffhanger at the end! I definitely can’t wait to read the sequel to this book.

Characters

Although I wasn’t a huge fan of the character right away, I must praise Dunn’s creation of Callie. I didn’t have much hope for her at first, but as I read more of the novel, I saw how much more there is to Callie—and I loved it. She had flaws, she made mistakes, and most of all, her love for her sister is beautiful and strong.

If you’ve been around in the book blogging community for a while—or if you’re a reader at all—you probably have noticed the lack of parental bonds and familial affection in YA novels. Either it’s dead parents, kidnapped parents, absentee parent, whatever parent, the case remains the same; hardly ever any parents. It’s become actually quite rare to have parents that actually care and are aware of things going on. (But that’s a discussion for another day.) What really stood out to me in Forget Tomorrow was the emphasis and focus on a sibling bond. Parental bonds are rare, but to me sibling bonds are even rarer, and I absolutely adored how Dunn incorporated Callie’s love for Jessa as a focus point in the story. (Of course, there were other familial bonds included as well, which only made the story better.)

You are the candle that shines when all power is extinguished. The proof that love exists when life is snuffed out.
When all my layers are stripped away, when everything I know is turned inside out, all I have left is  this.

My love for you.

It’s the only thing they can’t touch.

-Callie, about Jessa

The thing is, the strength of love is often addressed in YA novels, but it’s so rare that we’re talking about the strength of a sibling love, a sisterly bond. Being an older sister myself, I’d do anything for my younger sister, and I’m so happy to finally see a representation of that in a YA novel. Callie’s love for her sister was so strong, I admired, empathized and rooted for Callie by the end of the novel, no matter what other issues I had with her character.

Another thing I found to be really well-done in Callie’s character was her personality, and her development. Callie had flaws—which is what made her a better character. She can be selfish, she’s fearful (of heights, swimming, etc.) but this made her all the more real and I was able to relate to her. Her selfish moments did sometimes get a bit cumbersome, but they were something I only registered, not exactly something I disliked. I definitely appreciated how Callie wasn’t ignorant of when she was being selfish; it was usually quite the contrary of that, actually.

Selfish, a voice inside me roars. Self-centered, inconsiderate, pathetic. The amount of my selfishness makes me dizzy with disgust, but I can’t help myself. Even as I loathe myself for trying, the words pour out of me, searching, reaching, grasping for another solution.

How honest and relatable, is it not?

So, moving on to Logan, Callie’s love interest. Although he’s a perfectly fine character and usually would be the split image of someone I’d love, I’m not completely sold on his and Callie’s romance—or his character at all. Really, there’s not anything glaringly wrong with Logan; it’s just my opinion that he felt a bit dull. Or something. A terrible way to describe it, I know. Bottom line; I didn’t enjoy him as much as Callie, though he was still okay. (LOL I’m feeling kind of guilty for this very short and unclear paragraph on Logan when I look back at all my thoughts on Callie…I hope I’m making at least a little bit of sense!) Unfortunately my thoughts on the other characters were similar to that of Logan’s—though that isn’t to say I’m not interested in learning more about them!

Writing Style

And last but not least, I want to mention how much I enjoyed simply reading the words in this novel. With its vivid imagery and simplistic-yet-not style, Pintip Dunn took me by surprise with the writing in Forget Tomorrow. Everything I read popped into my brain immediately, and it was a fun experience to simply read the writing because it was all so well-written. Dunn did a great job in first person narrative, getting Callie’s voice across through the words clearly and effectively, as well as thoroughly showing Callie’s internal struggle, which did loads to get me even closer to Callie’s character.

Overall…

If you’re looking for a more different kind of dystopian novel than the average ones out there, Forget Tomorrow should go up on your list! A book of many themes and messages—including sibling bonds, making your own destiny and finding who you really are—Forget Tomorrow will definitely leave a strong impression. An important thing that stuck out to me was the familial bonds in this, which aren’t shown enough in most books. The fact that it was represented in this novel made everything so much the better. The intriguing world Dunn has created is gripping and intriguing, both something I recognize and something completely new (though for some it may not be the case). Dunn’s writing is wonderfully suited for the story, creating vivid images and hooking the reader. A solid 4 stars read! Definitely going to be keeping my eyes out for the sequel next year.

A little wrap-up of everything I’ve said:

  • The futuristic world was hooking and intriguing
  • The cliffhanger at the end of the book has me eager to read the sequel
  • Callie’s love for her sister was beautifully portrayed; this sisterly bond is one of the main reasons I liked this book so much
  • Callie herself was a great character, with flaws (that she’s aware of)
  • I was a bit iffy about Logan (and a lot of the other characters who aren’t explained as much), though he’s not a bad character
  • The writing was incredibly beautiful and took me by surprise (in the good way) coming from a debut author.

So, the time has come for the verdict: Do I recommend you gobble this up? Definitely, if you’re looking for a good YA dystopian/sci-fi novel to read—or if any of the above points interests you!


Let us forget tomorrow and talk about this book today! (Don’t even know if that made any sense—truth be told I’m only focusing on the [admittedly pretty bad] pun. LOL.) Point being; I’d love to know what you think of this book! Does it intrigue you? What books have you read that includes familial bonds? (‘Cause I’m in desperate need of having more books with family. I’m serious, guys.) Let me know whatever thoughts you may have down below! ❤

Hugs! 

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Love, Rosie by Cecelia Ahern (AKA Where Rainbows End) | Book Review

(Stand-Alone)

Published: February 1st 2005

Synopsis:

 Sometimes you have to look at life in a whole new way…

From the bestselling author of PS, I Love You comes a delightfully enchanting novel about what happens when two people who are meant to be together just can’t seem to get it right.

Rosie and Alex are destined for one another, and everyone seems to know it but them. Best friends since childhood, their relationship gets closer by the day, until Alex gets the news that his family is leaving Dublin and moving to Boston. At 17, Rosie and Alex have just started to see each other in a more romantic light. Devastated, the two make plans for Rosie to apply to colleges in the U.S.

She gets into Boston University, Alex gets into Harvard, and everything is falling into place, when on the eve of her departure, Rosie gets news that will change their lives forever: She’s pregnant by a boy she’d gone out with while on the rebound from Alex.

Her dreams for college, Alex, and a glamorous career dashed, Rosie stays in Dublin to become a single mother, while Alex pursues a medical career and a new love in Boston. But destiny is a funny thing, and in this novel, structured as a series of clever e-mails, letters, notes, and a trail of missed opportunities, Alex and Rosie find out that fate isn’t done with them yet.

From the gifted author of PS, I Love You comes this charming, romantic, addictively page-turning novel that will keep readers laughing and guessing until the very last page.


Love Rosie_bookcovers
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My Rating: 4.5 Stars 4.5/5 (Amazing)

Book Information

Publisher: Hyperion

Genre(s): Young-adult fiction, romance

Format: e-book


Hi there! Like all my pending reviews, this is way overdue, but oh well. At least it’s here now. Anyway, I absolutely loved this book! There’s nothing more to say. It was amazing. (The featured image is the book cover for Where Rainbows End, before it was renamed Love, Rosie. I just thought the cover looked prettier.) 🙂

Quick summary

Rosie & Alex have been best friends since forever, and when they got older they start to see eachother in a more romantic light. But when a mistake causes Rosie to become pregnant with a rebound guy, Rosie’s hopes and dreams are crushed as she becomes a single mother. On the other hand, Alex is on his way to a successful future and a new love. But fate has something different planned for the two best friends…Read More »