Hello people of the internet!!! On today`s `Monday Memos` we have another book review of a young adult novel you might want to add to your TBR (to be read) pile. Today`s book is ‘In The Hope of Memories` by Olivia Rivers, which was provided for review by Red Sparrow Press. As always this will be a spoiler-free review, but I will add some trigger warnings that you should be aware of before reading this book. If the following topics will trigger you then please proceed with caution: anorexia, bulimia, self-harm, school violence, death, and domestic terrorism. So now let`s get to the review! Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
`In The Hope of Memories` is about a high school senior named Hope who has recently died from a heart complication. Before Hope died she set up a scavenger hunt around New York City for her friends Erik, Kali, Aiden, & Sam, in order for them to meet each other. Each character has their own history with Hope, as well as their own individual issues they are facing. Throughout the book we get to see them face their personal demons, learn about each other, & maybe even start to see themselves the way Hope saw them.
I`m going to start by saying this is definitely a 5 smiley face book. It had an intriguing plot, interesting characters, & twists that will definitely keep you interested. Another thing that I really loved about this book was the various ethnic, gender, and sexual diversity that we see throughout this book. I enjoyed the fact that this book had a large amount of diversity, but it was weaved into the novel in an organic way that really added to the characters. Lastly, I absolutely loved how by the end of the book, you feel as if you know Hope even though she is already dead at the start of the book. The author does an incredible job of using the various characters` relationship with Hope, as well as her scavenger hunt to make us completely fall in love with the character. If your looking for a beautifully written, incredibly touching book to read this fall, then ‘In The Hope of Memories’ should top your list!
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Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we have a review of the novel ‘Silence Interrupted’ by Sania Shaikh, which was released on November 14th, 2016, & was provided for review by Lanier Press. Now I do want to issue a trigger warning for the following topics: suicide, cutting, Depression, alcoholism, spousal/child abuse, profanity, slut shaming, & homophobic slurs, so if any of these topics are triggering to you this is probably not the book for you. I can honestly say I have a lot to say about this one so let’s jump into the review. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
‘Silence Interrupted’ is a young adult novel about a group of four friends in their senior year of high school named: Troye, Adelaide, Arabella, & Zaidan. The four form a group after Troye moves from his hometown in Florida, to Georgia. On Troye’s 1st day of school, he is quickly intrigued by Adelaide outgoing nature, & the two quickly form a strong bond. At a school event Troye meets Arabella & Zaidan (who have been a couple for several years), & the four share a year of fun, friendship, & learning how to help each other conquer their darkest inner demons.
First of all I want to start off with what I really enjoyed about this book. I really loved all the topics that were tackled throughout this novel. The topics of cutting & child/spousal abuse in regards to Troye & Arabella were particularly well developed, which made these characters more engaging. I also really enjoyed the adults in this book. I thought that the author did a really good job of making us feel love, empathy, & hate towards the various adult characters in this book, which gave them more character depth. Unfortunately where ‘Silence Interrupted’ falls a bit short in my opinion is in the pacing of the book & the use of multiple perspectives. I often felt as if I didn’t know how much time passed throughout the book, which made it hard to believe the bond between the group because in one chapter they meet & by the next they’ve known each other for some time. The book often felt like it went by to slow during some parts of the book, & then speed up to much during other parts of the book. Lastly, I often wasn’t sure whose perspective I was listening to (since we got to see all 4 perspectives throughout the book). I often had to go back to the beginning of the chapter in order to know who was telling the story, which distracted me from what was happening in the story. Because of this, my enjoyment of the book definitely suffered despite the fact that the plot was a very interesting concept. I definitely would have loved it if the author just stuck with Troye & Adelaide’s perspectives instead of using all four characters, because I think this would have helped focus the writing a bit more which would have allowed the reader to stay immersed in the plot. Due to these reasons, I do have to give this book a 1 out of 5 smiley faces.
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“You probably think you know who I am, but I’m here to tell you that you don’t. I used to be a bright star of a girl, but that girl burned out of existence, like a fire swept through my life and left nothing but ash and smoke.”-Mellie from ‘What They Don’t Know’
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ I am very excited to bring you a book that discusses` a lot of very deep topics. Today we are reviewing the book ‘What They Don’t Know’ by Nicole Maggi, which was provided for review by Sourcebooks Fire & will be released tomorrow October 2nd, 2018. As always I will try to keep this review as spoiler free as possible however I will issue a trigger warning for the following subjects: rape, pro-life vs pro-choice debates, abortion, abuse of pills, harassment (if you are easily triggered by these topics then do not read this book). So this is definitely a book that requires A LOT of discussion so let’s get straight to the review. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
‘What They Don’t Know’ revolves around two teenage girls named Mellie & Lise who live in a small, conservative town in Colorado. Although Mellie & Lise were friends as children, they have grown apart over the years but soon find themselves forever woven in each others lives. Mellie has grown up in a very strict, religious household, is a good student, & is determined to remain sexually abstinent until marriage. Unfortunately her entire world changes when she is raped at her home a few days before Christmas. Mellie soon discovers that she is pregnant & must wrestle with whether she should give the baby up for adoption or get an abortion. Feeling alone & unable to tell anyone about her assault, Mellie begins to question everything that she previously believed, & this lead her to some dark & scary places. On the other hand, Lise is a free-spirited tern who isn’t afraid to speak her mind & help anyone who needs her. This trait of helping anyone who needs it leads Lise to figure out Mellie’s secrets & stopping at nothing to help her. However, when helping Mellie risks Lise’s own secrets coming out in the open, Lise must decide if she really can help Mellie or if some places are just too dark to climb out of.
Ok I’m going to start off by saying that this is one of the most captivating books I’ve read all year. ‘What They Don’t Know’ takes you on a roller coaster ride of emotions, that will make you truly think about all of the topics in this story. Obviously this book is a 5 smiley face read, but I will say that you do have to be emotionally prepared when going into this one. Nicole Maggi has an incredible talent of making her truly become emotionally involved with the characters she creates. She is also able to present the topics brought up in this story in such a way that you feel as lost as Mellie regardless of your personal opinion on some of the topics. Also, I love how not every character reacts exactly the way you expect in certain situations in this book, which really gives you characters to root for. One concern that some people have had with this book is the depiction of Christian characters, however I truly disagree with this concern. Although I wish we did see more open-minded Christian characters, it’s perfectly believable to not see this due to the fact that Mellie’s parents have kept her far away from anyone who believes in things contrary to what they believe. Also, we do see that Mellie finds more open-minded Christian people towards the end of the book, which I think really helps Mellie’s growth as an individual feel more powerful, while allowing her to keep some of her religious foundation that makes her Mellie. The last thing I want to talk about is the fact that the two girls perspectives are told in journal entries, which really makes the narrative feel more personal, as if the girls are telling us this story themselves. I’m truly excited to read more from this author, & hope that everyone checks out ‘What They Don’t Know’.
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“I never meant for it to go the way it did. I swear. I just wanted to talk to someone. I didn’t mean to fall in love.”- Eric from ‘Follow Me Back’
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘ Monday Memos’ we’re going to discuss a book called ‘Follow Me Back’, a psychological thriller that will definitely find a place among your TBR pile (or To Be Read for those of you who don’t speak BookTube) very soon. ‘Follow Me Back’ is the debut book from A.V. Geiger, one of the latest superstars to come out of the writing website Wattpad, and was provided for review by Sourcebooks Fire. On the outside this book seems like your typical Young Adult contemporary novel, but it quickly evolves into a story that will keep you mesmerized until the end. So now that you’re excited, let’s begin the review! Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
‘Follow Me Back’ is a dual perspective novel that tells the story of 18 year old Tessa Hart who is a super fan of musician Eric Thorne. Tessa become famous within the Eric Thorne fandom when her fanfiction ‘Eric Thorne Obsessed’ goes viral. Due to her newfound internet fame, Tessa grabs the attention of fellow super fan MET (a screen name that stands for Mrs. Eric Thorne), as well as Eric’s management team. However, Tessa is harboring a deep secret that will eventually change her life forever. We also get insight into 18 year old superstar Eric’s deep resentment of his extreme fame, due to the fact that his fans seem to be more interested in his body than his music. When Eric creates a catfish Twitter account in order to ruin his own image, he sets off a series of events that will expose the dark sides of fame & obsession.
I feel like I have to start off this section by saying that not only is this a 5 smiley face book, but it broke the smiley face scale. Luckily the last few books I’ve reviewed have been very good reads, but this is undoubtedly the best book I’ll read this year. The characters are incredibly well developed & interesting, the plot grips you from the first word & never lets you go, & the twists and turns not only make perfect sense, but actually surprise you. Lastly, I really have to commend A.V. Geiger on her talent as a writer. She is able to perfectly jump between the perspectives of Tessa & Eric, while making their characters feel distinct and interesting. She is also able to use the tool of flashbacks through police reports to help her story become even more compelling. Needless to say I am so excited to not only read the sequel to this book, but to also add A.V. Geiger to my list of auto-buy authors. I am so excited to see where her career goes, & encourage all of you to invest in this duology TODAY!
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Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘YouTube Wednesday’ we’re going to discuss rising BookTuber/Lifestyle Guru ‘Basically Britt’. If you love channels that have really amazing, varied content then you gotta subscribe to this channel. Whether you like vlogs/book videos/or beauty & fashion videos you’ll find it all on `Basically Britt`. So now let’s get to why you’re here, the videos! Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
First up, we’re going to talk about is Britt’s ‘Best Books I’ve Read Because of BookTube’ video which was uploaded on March 26, 2016 (you can check out this video below). Now we’ve all been influenced by BookTube, Goodreads, or other reviews when it cones to books. If someone whose opinion you trust tells you that a book is good then that’s usually the next book you’ll pick up. Unfortunately sometimes this can lead to some not so great picks that add to your DNF (which means did not finish for those who don’t speak BookTube) pile. However, in this video we get to see some of the books that Britt was exposed to through BookTube that she ended up liking. It’s really fun when we get to see someone enjoying a book that they may have not known about without BookTube. The next video we’re going to discuss is her ‘MEETING KOALAS AND KANGAROOS | Backpacking Australia’ video, which was uploaded on November 16, 2017. This is such a cute vlog because we actually do get to see Koalas & Kangaroos! If you had to have a staycation this year (don’t worry I feel your pain), then this vlog will help you feel as if you did get to have exotic adventures this summer.
Next up we have Britt’s ‘Books, Beauty, & Fashion | Try On Haul |’ which was uploaded on February 25, 2018 (you can check out the video here). In this video we get to see more diversity on Britt’s channel through the inclusion of beauty products & clothes! It’s so interesting whenever YouTubers branch out of their niches, so this definitely shows us that we can expect lots of different, cool videos from Britt in the future. The last video we’re going to talk about is her ‘ON MY SHELF #3’ video which was uploaded on August 20th, 2018. In this video Britt asked her viewers to pick random numbers, then she choose a shelf & book number on that shelf & talked about that book. It was definitely a fun game to watch because you got you see Britt discuss books she may not normally comment about.
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Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘YouTube Wednesday we’re going to talk about an AMAZING YouTuber that you need in your life! If you haven’t heard of Super Space Chick (aka Kristin) then you are missing out on one of the best emerging BookTube channels on the internet! So now let’s get to the videos. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
The first video that we’re going to talk about is Kristin’s ‘Nail Art Tutorial Inspired By A Darker Shade of Magic’, which was uploaded on March 9th, 2015. In this video Kristin is joined by author Melissa Grey of the ‘novelnails’ Tumblr page. This is a very cool video that will show you easy, interesting ways to make beautiful nail art using a lot of inexpensive products, as well as things you may already have at home. Such a fun DIY project that you can try alone or with friends! The next video we’re going to talk about is her ‘Sailor Moon Book Tag’, which was uploaded on June 29th, 2016 (you can check out the video below). Personally I LOVE this tag because Sailor Moon is life (it’s a fact…just trust me on this). This is a very cute tag that asks bookish questions set to a theme involving numerous characters from the anime/manga. Also on a side note, Kristin cosplays as Sailor Moon in this video which adds the perfect touch and really shows what a fun personality she has.
Now we’re going to discuss Kristin’s ‘Books That Help Me Find My Way’ video, which was uploaded on March 19th, 2018 (you can check out the video below). This video was made in honor of Gayle Forman’s new book ‘I Have Lost My Way’, and features some of the books that have personally shaped Kristin which include: ‘Harry Potter’, ‘The Perks of Being A Wallflower’, ‘The Book Thief’, and many others. I really feel that this video shares such an important message of how the things we love shape who we become. Whether your hobbies include books, video games, sports, or academics, the things that we hold close to our hearts really determine the values we hold dear, as well as how we relate to the world. The final video we’re going to discuss is Kristin’s ‘Anime Wrap Up #3- Orange, Your Name, No Game No Life, Rose of Versailles’, video which was uploaded on July 20th, 2018. This is a really interesting video because it shows the diversity present on Kristin’s channel, and really helps you relate to her. On he channel, you can find book/manga/graphic novel reviews, anime reviews, various tags, and so many other interesting videos, that you will never be bored. These type of channels are always my favorite, because if we’re being honest, usually if you’re a book nerd you’re also a nerd in other areas of your life so it’s fun to see a YouTuber who’s not afraid to release their inner nerd.
You can keep up with everything Kristin is doing here:
“Us adults are frequently suspicious of the young. You see it all the time on the news, hear the whispers on the streets. It’s always seen as such a terrible thing that young people are gathering with their friends, wearing strange clothes, saying words we’ve never heard, listening to music we don’t like. We forget so quickly that you’re us and we’re you.” – Poppy’s mom from ‘Ten Birthdays’
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we’re going to review a very interesting new book by author Kerry Wilkinson called ‘Ten Birthdays’, which was provided for review by Bookouture. This book was released in May of 2017, and is a coming of age story about a British teenager. So let’s get to why you’re all here, the book review! Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
‘Ten Birthdays’ follows the life of Poppy Kinsey as she evolves from a 16 year old teenager, into a 25 year old woman. On her birthday, Poppy receives one of 10 letters her mother wrote for her before her death on Poppy’s 15th birthday. At first Poppy is not sure if she wants to open the letters because it brings painful feelings to the forefront of her mind however, she eventually does read the 1st letter, and for the next 9 birthdays reads one letter a year. Throughout the story we see Poppy’s life change as she deals with friendships, relationships, and finding her purpose in life. Along the way poppy’s mother gives her life advice and tells her stories through the letters she wrote, and thus is able to stay a constant force in Poppy’s life.
Although you would think that this story would be very sad, it is actually more of a coming of age story, than a story of loss. Anyone who has had someone close to them pass away can relate to Poppy’s mixed feelings of love and sadness in regards to the letters her mother left her. Also, I really enjoyed the fact that Poppy is not your stereotypical happy protagonist, and because of this faces struggles and consequences for questionable decisions throughout the course of the book. You find yourself constantly rooting for Poppy, and interested to know what the next year of her life will bring her. I also like that the book shows the difficulties Poppy and her two childhood best friends Mark & Freya face as they grow older and make decisions that determine who the kind of people they will grow up to be. Lastly, although there is not a lot of diversity in this book, Freya is bi-racial (her mother is Jamaican and although the book does not actually describe her father, it does allude to the fact that he is white). Because of all of these factors, I would definitely give this book a 4 smiley face rating. It is a very enjoyable novel that you will not want to put down, and I definitely hope that we will get a sequel one day because I would love to continue to see how these amazing charterers’ lives turn out.
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“There was something so tragic about the acts of desperate girls. My helpless heart wished that I could write a different ending to the story, that I could have kept Chloe from disappearing and delivered Helen safely home. But trusting the wrong person wasn’t the only kind of desperate act. Wishing for the impossible could break you just as swiftly.Whether you wanted someone to love you or someone to protect you, it was hard to be a girl in need.” – Jenny Parker ‘The Lives of Desperate Girls’.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘YouTube Wednesday’ we’re going to discuss a new Booktube channel that you need to follow RIGHT NOW!!! If you’ve never heard of Robby Reads then you’re not only missing out on a great Booktube channel, but also an AMAZING Bookstagram page (seriously his bookish pictures are so beautiful that you’ll wonder how your Instagram feed lived without them). Although Robby gained a lot of fame in the book community through his Bookstagram, he is quickly proving that he is also an incredibly interesting online personality that you will want to watch over and over again. So now Let’s get to the fun part…the videos! Ready? Ok, Let’s go!!!
The first video we’re going to discuss is Robby’s ‘…Ready For It?’ video, which was uploaded on September 3, 2017 (you can check out this video below). In this video he answers bookish questions that are themed after Taylor Swift songs such as: the book you are never ever getting back together with…like ever (sorry I couldn’t help it), a red book, a forbidden “love story” book, etc. In this video we’re not only able to learn more about Robby based off of his choices, but we’re also able to see what a fun & bubbly personality he has. This video is the perfect mix for book & Taylor Swift fans that will give you all the feels. The next video we’re going to talk about is his ‘DIY Harry Potter Starbucks Drinks’, which was uploaded on March 12, 2018. This is definitely the perfect DIY project to do this summer whether you want a refreshing drink or even a cool Instagram picture. In this video Robby shows us how to make variations on popular Harry Potter themed Starbucks Drinks that are simple to make & low cost enough to make over and over again. This will definitely bring a little magic to your day!
Next up we have Robby’s ‘How I Take And Edit My Bookstagram Pictures’, which was uploaded on April 7, 2018 (you can check out the video below). This is definitely one of my favorite videos because it’s very interesting to see a popular Bookstagrammer explain his process. In this video Robby not only explains how he sets up his shots, but also which photo editing apps he uses, as well as tips & tricks in order to make the most out of these apps. The last video we’re going to discuss is his ‘Huge BEA, Bookcon, & NYC Book Haul’, which was uploaded on June 12, 2018. Now we all have to admit that we love book hauls (because honestly it’s like shopping without having to spend money), but the best hauls of the year are definitely the Bea & Bookcon Hauls. In these hauls we get to see cool new arcs so we can prepare for all of the new upcoming releases. Again we get to not only see Robby demonstrate his vast knowledge of books, but also the winning personality that has made people fall in love with him.
Keep up with everything Robby is doing here: