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Glass Sword Official Blog Tour Review

Note: Originally written for Thursday, February 11, 2016.

 

Synopsis:

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?
 

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In Glass Sword, Victoria Aveyard’s newest installment of the Red Queen series, Mare finds herself struggling with the realization that no one is who she thought they were and her trust and loyalties will be put to the ultimate test.
 

After Maven, once an ally and beloved Prince, is now an infamous ruler whose sole purpose is to get rid of those who represent a threat to his rule.  Unfortunately for Mare, that means herself, Prince Cal, The Scarlet Guard, and any other red with unusual abilities out there.  Those who are now being called Newbloods pose as a danger to Maven’s rule, but also to themselves if caught.
 

CWNtYMdUEAA-XWWThe plan is to find all the newbloods, to protect them and teach them how to harness their abilities, to try to get there before Maven finds them and kills them all.  But the plan might be harder to achieve than expected, and they will all have to give anything and everything to make it happen, even if it means losing themselves in the process.
 

If I may be honest, this is one of the books I’ve been waiting for the most out of the 2016 releases.  Luckily enough, it was one of the earliest releases of the year and even luckier, I was asked to join the official blog tour.  I have to say, the book did not disappoint.
 

The story begins right at the end of the previous book, so you get the feel of the last one right away.  Although at times it felt slow, during training sessions for example (I’m not too big on those),  all the action packed scenes that were spread throughout the story made up for it. Aveyard’s background on screenwriting is an incredible asset when it comes to her world building and storytelling process, you really get the feel of how Norta is geographically designed, you feel like if you are actually there with everyone.
 

My favorite scenes from the book were all involving a certain newblood speedster and his very intriguing… let’s call it “missions” for the sake of a spoiler-free review.  Getting to know more about this character up close, rather than in not-so-random mentions, was both refreshing and well adapted into the story.
 

The ending left me breathless.
This is not the first time this happens to me with this series.
I can’t talk about it.
So please… just read it so you understand my pain!
 

No, seriously, the ending was that good, it left me crushed but also wanting more, from one book junkie to another, I will be not-so-patiently awaiting for the next installment until it’s finally on my hands.
 

Happy Reading!

 

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Remember you can get these and many more titles at The Bookmark!
Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · HappyHalloWicked · Reccomendations · Reviews · Special Events

Let your obsession loose in Danielle Paige’s Heart of Tin

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

91y3vITteZLHappy HalloWicked Book nerds!

I hope you’re having a great time tonight dressed as your favorite lit-folk! I for one would like to talk about my favorite man-machine hybrid, Oz’s very own Tin Woodman and his adventure throughout Danielle Paige’s prequel novella Heart of Tin.

In Heart of Tin, we meet our favorite man of steel (pun absolutely intended, but hey, it’s Halloween, it wouldn’t surprise me if Tin put on a red cape and drew an T on his silver chest just for fun tonight) as he’s spent what seems like decades as the King of the Winkie country after Dorothy and the Wizard’s departure. He’s been relatively happy, the Winkies aren’t troublesome people and they seem to get along with everyone despite their oddness, but he’s always felt as something has been missing.  You see, after Dorothy won him a heart, Tin fell head over heels for Dorothy and has thought about her with every heartbeat of his plush heart.

7d64eac8b9f8702ec7f3a80adea3e9d6After Dorothy’s arrival, she and Glinda the “good” Witch of the North, tell Tin, the Scarecrow and the Lion a tale about how Queen Ozma was abusing her power and how Dorothy stopped her and is now a temporary ruler of Oz until a suitable replacement is found, and they assign each of them a series of tasks within Dorothy’s government.  Tin is appointed as head of security so he decides to form an army as his gift to Dorothy.

Of course he’d be ecstatic about her return, despite how long it’s been, he’s never found someone to love in his kingdom, what he didn’t count on, was the rage and jealousy that would suddenly grow within himself because of his love for her, and her sudden rise to power.

11169168_489176714571894_1681841265564999651_nTin isn’t the friendly character that wanted nothing more than a heart anymore.  This is the Tin Woodman that you would find if there was a horror movie adaptation from L. Frank Baum’s classic.  He’ll do anything for love, to win her heart, even harm the innocent and he’ll justify it saying he did it out of love. In a way, his devotion is understandable, he’s very gullible when it comes to Dorothy, he’ll choose to believe she loves him even when she’ll treat him like a piece of garbage, and that’s what people usually do when they’re in love, but that doesn’t mean that he should act the way he does.  Either way, with Tin’s story, Paige has shown once again what a master she is at morphing a classic “happily ever after tale” into a nightmare that not even Michael Myers himself would like to dream about.

With the most horrific and spooktacular of the Dorothy Must Die Novellas to the date, the HalloWicked series has come to an end! Remember to stay tuned on November 10th, when her next novella, The Straw King, will be released and to catch up with all the Dorothy goodness before Yellow Brick War hits shelves next spring. Thank you so much for reading and have a great time!

Happy Reading!

“Somewhere in the back of my mind, I had the vaguest notion that I was the one being wicked. But I found that I didn’t care. In fact, I almost enjoyed it.”
Remember you can get these and many more titles at The Bookmark.
Críticas/Sinopsis · HappyHalloWicked · Listicles · Movie Adaptations · Reviews · Special Events

Reading Outside my Comfort Zone for a change.

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

Hello there fellow book addicts!

Have you ever felt like you’ve been reading, much of the same all the time? Whether it be Dystopian, contemporary, medieval, mystery; we all have this one genre we keep going back to over and over again. All the same, we all have at least one genre that we wouldn’t really tackle, not even if it presented itself as the softest cloud in the universe.

That said, after I realized this was something we all do, for this Halloween I decided to do something different and read something outside my comfort zone and tackle some horror.

My pick: Horns by Joe Hill

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So, why did I go with this cover instead of the original? Here’s a couple of reasons:

  • Number 1: the original cover kind of creeps me out.  Yes, I’m a softie, I like my happy endings and if those aren’t possible, I like “realistic within the storyline” endings. So, naturally, horror wouldn’t really be in my Gotta Read Them All choice of genres.
  • Number 2: My inner Potterhead would’ve thrown a fit if I picked any other version when I had the chance to have one with Daniel Radcliffe’s face on it.
  • Number 3: I promised myself to read it before watching the movie, and the cover reminding me of it was a motivation.

So, my experience with it was extraordinarily long for some reason.  The story was rather enjoyable, and I kept wanting to read more, even when college, work, and sometimes even health, got in the way.  I don’t even think it was the story itself or my busy schedules, it was those margins! The pages had some tiny, tiny margins that left barely any space inkless. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating, but it felt like those margins were smaller than usual, making it feel like a longer read than it actually was.

Content wise, It was an intriguing story with a “dirtier” language than what I’m used to reading, but hey, I don’t judge, every author has its style and Hill works it well. His writing was very controversial and, at the same time, it makes you think some more about life, death, good, evil, right and wrong.

Think about it, your entire life you’ve been told that God is good, the Devil is evil, that there’s no in-between and that you either do good and go to heaven or do bad and go to hell. Out of nowhere comes Hill and presents the most spiritual, honest, caring and loyal kid, who gets screwed over by life and ends up growing horns for no apparent reason. He’s still good, he might want revenge for the rape and murder of the love of his life, but he’s still good nonetheless.

In general, it was a great read although I felt like the explanation as to why everything happened was rather short and straightforward. don’t know if I’ll be reading much horror anytime soon but this was a pretty good start. Most of all, I’m really glad that I finally get to see the movie that, judging from the trailer, changes a lot from the original story, not necessarily in a bad way.  So, if you still haven’t seen the movie, or would like to know what changed, grab a copy and find out!

Remember, you can get these and many more titles at The Bookmark.

Happy Reading and HappyHalloWicked!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Reviews · Special Events

Give In To the Dark Side With The Wicked Will Rise

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

91I7tRPe+cLOz is at war.  The Emerald City is in flames, the order is scattered all across the country, and the evil Princess Dorothy is nowhere to be found, while the just Queen Ozma has become something completely unexpected; one half of a whole. There is chaos all around and it’s up to one person to fix it.

In Danielle Paige’s sequel to the New Yor Times Best Seller Dorothy Must Die, Amy Gumm finds herself face to face with the results of her failed mission.  Dorothy is still alive somewhere and she’s lost all contact with the order members.  She and Ozma have been saved by The Wizard, and the wingless monkeys (with the help of some paper wings and a bit of magic) are taking them to safety.

After a series of events that happen throughout their passing through the Queendom of the wingless ones, which I’ll refrain myself from mentioning to avoid major spoilers, I’d say that the most important theme of the novel is Amy’s fight, not just within Oz or against Dorothy’s rule, but with herself and her potential for darkness and middle_1859bf680eadd8d56e1a96aac11781737a_wickedwillrise_socialgraphic2evil.  All of her life, she’s been a decent person.  Yes, she has a smart mouth that wouldn’t even stay shut if her life depended on it, but she’s never really harmed anyone.  She always let herself be pushed around and told off by everyone, and that past of being pushed around is exactly what will feed her darkness and make her someone different than who she thought she was, that will be the moment when the Wicked will Rise.

In general, I have to say that I found this book a million times more surprising than its prequel, which is saying something because Dorothy Must Die had surprises at every turn.  There were some characters whose involvement I missed when compared to the first book, but their absence made way for a deeper character development primarily for Pete and Ozma, but also for other minor characters.

My emotions were put to a test. For some characters, my affection towards them grew even more; for others, I started hating them, and then there were some characters that, thanks to that ditzy brain of mine, I had completely forgotten how much I hated them (but it’s okay because I’m pretty sure Paige hates them and their sneaky evil ways as much as I do).

I can’t say much more, because the book was a everything that I hoped it would be, maybe even more.  As of this moment, I’ve read every available part of the story, including the prequel novellas, so all that’s left to says is this… Bring on the Yellow Brick War!

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Remember you can get these books, and many more, at The Bookmark.

Happy HalloWicked!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Reccomendations · Reviews · Special Events

Find out What The Wizard is Really Made of in The Wizard Returns!

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

23507358Three tests await the infamous -yet wonderful- Wizard of Oz.  The tests will prove if his levels of wisdom, courage and love are fit for the one true savior this land needs, now that Dorothy has returned and become a tyrant.

In Liam Frank Baum’s classic, the wizard was sort of a quirky guy who took advantage of the Ozian’s innocence by tricking them into building him a palace and making him ruler.  It’s been a long time since then and after Dorothy, with all of her initial childlike innocence, exposed him to all of Oz, he chose to return to the other place… But did he really?

It’s been twenty-five Oz years since his balloon went up in the sky and into the storm, twenty-five years of crashing into the poppy field and into a blissful sleep. Now, after being rescued by a mysterious boy with bright emerald eyes, the Wizard has lost his memory and, the only way to retrieve it is by submitting himself to the Fairies’ test and prove himself worthy of Oz.

This is a story about redemption, about finding your true self and figuring out who you truly are. Was the Wizard truly evil, or was he just making the best out of a complicated situation? Will he remain oblivious to all the damage he’s caused, or will he remember what he’s done?

Danielle Paige has managed to give a fresh spin on a classic, and all of these novellas complement the story in an exquisite way, it wouldn’t be fair for you if I went into detail about the story.  If I did, there wouldn’t be much point in reading it, and that’s not the objective of this piece.  The Wizard’s choices are what make the story what it is, the story’s development helps tie some confusing loose ends from the full novels and the story in general makes you think about who the true villain of the series could actually be.  All I’m going to say is that, after rereading this novella a second time, I feel very strongly about the Wizard, whether it’s in a positive or negative way, the only way you’ll find out is by reading The Wizard Returns!

Remember that this novella, along with No Place Like Oz and The Witch Must Burn in the compilation of stories included in Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1.  Also, don’t forget to follow Amy’s quest to free Oz in Dorothy Must Die, The Wicked Will Rise, and Yellow Brick War, coming soon from Harper.

You can get these, along with many other titles, as always, at The Bookmark!

Happy HalloWicked Everyone!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · HappyHalloWicked · Reviews · Special Events

There’s a New Girl in Oz in Danielle Paige’s Dorothy Must Die

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

DorothyMustDie_CoverOnly1.inddWe all know the story, a tornado swept her away from Kansas and into a mysterious and magical land, we know she met some friends, slayed some witches and made some dreams come true.  We also know she never wanted anything other than to get home to her family, because there’s no place like home.  What if that’s not the end of the story..?

What if there’s more to it than what we’ve always known?  What if everything changed after the Lion got his courage, the Scarecrow got his brains and the Tin Woodman got his heart? What if Dorothy herself changed after the click-click-click of her heels? Well, ladies and gentlemen, that’s exactly what Danielle Paige’s debut novel, Dorothy Must Die, is all about!

Amy Gumm, also known as Salvation Amy by her insufferable classmates, has never felt like she belonged in Flat Hill, Kansas.  After her father abandoned them, she, along with her mess-of-a-mother and their pet rat Star, have lived in the Dusty Acres trailer park and her life have been anything but pleasant throughout the years.

Everything changed the night of the tornado… After her mother chooses a party over the safety of their home, abandoning her right before the storm; Amy gets whisked away into the land we’ve all heard about, only it’s not at all what we’ve always heard. Oz is now a desolated, dark and abandoned shadow of what it used to be.  The land is being drained of its magic, the yellow brick road is falling apart, and the only place that seems to be unaffected is the emerald palace, which is now being ruled by a ruthless Dorothy Gale. You heard it! Dorothy’s trading her silver slippers for some fierce six inches ruby stilettos and she’s wreaking havoc around the Emerald City.

But, wait a second, didn’t she go back home? You bet she did! Unfortunately, after seeing Oz, the good and perky farm girl we all know and love became power obsessed and somehow she came back.  Good is now wicked, wicked is now good, everything is upside down and there’s only one person that can stop it.  According to the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked, Amy is the key to freeing Oz of Dorothy’s tight grip.  The only way to achieve it? By killing Dorothy.

1383694404000--MG-1410rt-1B-2This twist on a classic was one that, at first, I had some trouble wrapping my head around, but only because you don’t expect anything related to the Wizard of Oz to begin with a fight between a pregnant girl and your main character.  But that’s just the thing! This isn’t Dorothy’s story, it’s Amy’s and the way Paige created this world as an alternative to a classic is simply genius!  There’s always something going on, sometimes it’s training, sometimes spying, and sometimes it’s fighting, you just never get bored with it.

This is only the first installment of Amy’s story.  Follow her in her quest to free Oz and join the revolution! You can get this, as well as it’s sequel, The Wicked Will Rise, and the first volume of the prequel novella compilations Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1, which includes No Place Like Oz, The Witch Must Burn and The Wizard Returns, as well as many other titles, at The Bookmark.

Happy HalloWicked everyone!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Reviews · Special Events

Join the revolution in The Witch Must Burn!

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

91P+AGtkzlLJellia Jamb, Dorothy’s go-to maid for absolutely everything, is more than meets the eye and you’re about to find out the extent of it in Danielle Paige’s second Dorothy Must Die Novella, The Witch Must Burn.

 

Jellia has been a maid in the Emerald Palace for as long as she can remember.  Orphaned and brought to the palace as a child, growing up with Ozma and training herself as a Lady’s Maid is what she’s always done, what she loves and what she’s great at, or so she thought. As it turns out, Jellia is part-fairy and possesses strong magic, stronger than most people in Oz, aside from Ozma herself, and now Dorothy who seems to be back for good.

 

“I’d always kept the extent of my magic a secret from everyone else in the palace. Adding a little extra shine to the silverware was no stretch for most Ozians, but ever since that day, I knew that my own powers were different—and stronger—from everyone else in the palace. Except Dorothy. And Ozma.”

– Jellia, Danielle Paige’s The Witch Must Burn

 

With Dorothy taking over the Emerald City, Ozma only a shell of what she used to be, and Glinda taking a secret interest in draining the magic out of Oz for herself, Jellia knows that it’s just about time that someone does something about it. The problem is that, being a servant her entire life, she doesn’t really know where to start, all she knows is that the closer she gets to Dorothy, the higher her intel will be, and maybe, just maybe, she’ll find a way to rid Oz of the nightmare that has become Dorothy Gale.
 

Lucky for her, theres a secret group that has been keeping tabs on her who just might be the key to fixing things.  On an enforced summer “internship” in Glinda’s palace, Jellia meets Nox, an undercover member of the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.  With his help, along with the resources of the rest of the Order, Jellia will embark on a mission to make Oz whole, no matter the risk.

“ I believe in the possibility of a better Oz, Jellia. I have to. I won’t let Glinda and Dorothy keep destroying our country. And if I can avenge my parents’ deaths—well, so much the better.”

– Nox, Danielle Paige’s The Witch Must Burn

 

y450-293Remember that you can read Jellia’s story, as part of the novella compilation of Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1, which you can get, along with many other titles, at The Bookmark. Join Jellia, Nox, Amy, and the rest of the Order and Join the revolution.  With your help, “the witch will burn!”

 

Happy Reading and Happy HalloWicked!

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Find a Piece of Your Heart in Jessi Kirby’s Newest Novel!

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

17571215Quinn Sullivan’s world turned upside down after Trent’s accident.  It’s been 400 days after his passing and she’s still struggling to move on.  It feels like it was just yesterday when he shouted those two words that brought him into her life; “Hey!” and “Wait!” and gave her a sunflower.  After all of his organs were donated, thinking that it would help her move forward, Quinn decides to contact the recipients and meet them.  They all respond, all but the heart’s recipient.

After the constant struggle to find “Male, 19, CA,” the new owner of Trent’s heart, her search leads her to a beachside surf shop, and to Colton Thomas.  Colton isn’t all what she thought he’d be. He’s not helpless, or weak, or unhealthy, as she expected.  He’s a slim and healthy surfer working on his parent’s shop.  When they meet, she doesn’t tell him right away about who she is, or whose heart he carries.  Instead, the two will go on a journey where they could both change for the better, as long as she agrees to move forward from the heart that she kept for so long.

Okay, first off, I have to say; this book was epic and heart stopping, no pun intended.  For anyone who follows my Goodreads account, I have some explaining to do.  Yes, I gave this book a 3-star rating, and yes, I know that it doesn’t necessarily agree with my affectionate outbursts regarding this book, but there’s a reason for all this.  Originally, I thought the novel was going to have a different story, I thought the novel was going to have a different story, I thought the story was going to be about Quinn’s search for the heart’s recipient, not about how finding him would change her life.  I felt like the descriptions were somewhat misleading but it doesn’t take away from the fact that it was a good story.
4106087The other reason I took a star from it, was the fact that I felt like Colton should’ve known the truth at the beginning of the book; it would’ve been intriguing to see both Quinn and Colton debating whether they had real feelings for each other or if it was just Trent’s heart influencing them, but, then again, that’s just me.

In general, I loved the book, especially a very “critical” heart-pounding moment that almost killed me, and I’d love to read some more of Kirby’s work.

What about you? What did you think of the story? Did you go to Book Club last week? Let me know in the comments section below.

Happy Reading!

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To All The Boys I Loved Before… and never dated, sorry-not-sorry!

By Mónica G. González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

To All the Boys I've Loved Before 3dLara Jean has loved many boys, she loved plenty but never truly. Every time she fell for a boy, to avoid heartbreak, she’d write them a soul-pouring letter telling them all the reasons she loved them, and the ones for why she had to let them go. Her letters were never sent, she kept them in a box inside her room; well actually, never got sent until now.

What would you do if someone sent out your super secret love letters without your consent? Someone, accidentally or intentionally, sent out her letters, and now every boy she’s ever loved knows about her feelings, specially the obnoxiously popular Peter Kavinsky, and her sister’s recent ex-boyfriend Josh.

The Song Sisters; Margot, Lara Jean and Kitty, have done pretty much everything together, before and after their mother died.  After Margot goes off to college, family ties will be tested, relationships will rise and fall and Lara Jean will have to choose between playing it safe, or taking a risk she’s never taken before.

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I have mixed feelings about this book. While I did enjoy how the story sort of flowed throughout mid to end book, at the beginning I felt like Lara Jean acted a bit too childish for a teenager, while Kitty, being an actual child, acted like she belonged in high school. While that was going on, Margot was there being a mom, and leaving to another continent altogether.

Although I do understand why she had to be so serious all of the time, having to take on so much responsibility at such an early age, followed by the anxiety of having to hand her responsibilities to Lara Jean so she could live her life; she could’ve at least acted a little friendlier towards her sister. Then again, like I said before, I understand; so many years of bottled up resentment about having to grow up too early because of a missing parent will do that to someone.

Another aspect of the story that I didn’t like was the fact that Josh’s choices kept changing; almost like if he was flipping a quarter to choose who to love. It would’ve been easier if he had just stayed forever in love with Margot and let it be.  Same thing with Geniveve. Either you want Peter or you don’t, you can’t just change your mind every few minutes.

Actually, I have made a decision. On the events of this Geniveve being such a horrible human being, and Robyn Schneider’s Geniveve being just plain exasperating banner-frame(kudos to Jenny and Robyn for writing such lovely books with such dislikable antagonists, though), from now on, every time I read about a new Geniveve, I am automatically mind-shunning her until she proves herself worthy of my attention.

With that said, I gave this book a solid three star rating, because while it could’ve been better, it was a pretty lovely story depicting real life issues like ethnic discrimination and the passing of a parent. And also, because I am still dying to know how the story will unfold in the conclusive sequel, P.S. I Still Love You.

Happy Reading!

Críticas/Sinopsis · Reccomendations

Nonstop Travels Await in The Geography of You and Me.

by Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

Third edition cover.
Third edition cover.

Lucy and Owen met in an elevator, during a statewide blackout, in the middle of New York. She lives on the 24th floor, he lives on the basement.  They are two very different people that will soon learn the true meaning of love and how it may change you, no matter how many miles apart you may be.

After a magical night of mischief, melting ice cream and shining stars over the Manhattan sky, the two go off on separate journeys, with the promise of staying in touch.  When Lucy moves to Europe and Owen goes on a cross-country job search with his father, that’s when the postcards start flooding in.  As a joke, they started corresponding with beautifully cliché postcards of national landmarks with short messages that told how they truly felt for one another.  Soon enough, when they both find themselves settled in a steady place, they see no point on sending postcards that they’ve already sent, so they choose to move on.  But will that determination to move on be enough against their true feelings or will they find a way to meet again?

5c9421558807a9bf31df50c6c817218eThis story is one of those classic “boy meets girl, girl has to go far away, destiny will make them find each other, then they live happily ever after… or so you think.”  It was a pretty enjoyable novel with simple, yet, deep enough characters that you never got tired of getting to know.  Each of them multi-layered, with each layer more complex than the one before.

Lucy had felt an orphan from the start, but never had she felt truly alone, unlike in the starting point of the novel. Owen, who had always known just one place his entire life, who had grown up with his parents right behind him, feels like half his soul has been torn apart after his mother died.  You can see her pain, and his grief, throughout the book, but you also watch them heal with time.

JenniferSmithAuthorPhoto
Jennifer E. Smith

I feel like Jennifer E. Smith managed to portray perfectly the levels of commitment, uncertainty, and even pain, that usually comes with loving someone an ocean away. It’s not necessarily tragic, but it’s not a breeze either.  Lucy and Owen were the perfect balance between keeping it together and losing it under their circumstances.

In the end, I chose to give this story a 4 out of 5 stars because of how it handled the topics, the relatable characters, the realistic execution and because I enjoyed it very much.

Happy reading!