Review: The Wendy Project

9Title: The Wendy Project
Author: Melissa Jane Osborne (author) | Veronica Fish (illustrator)
Release date: July 18th, 2017
Publisher: Super Genius
Pages: 96
Format: Netgalley ARC
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐

Description (from goodreads)16-year-old Wendy Davies crashes her car into a lake on a late summer night in New England with her two younger brothers in the backseat. When she wakes in the hospital, she is told that her youngest brother, Michael, is dead. Wendy — a once rational teenager – shocks her family by insisting that Michael is alive and in the custody of a mysterious flying boy. Placed in a new school, Wendy negotiates fantasy and reality as students and adults around her resemble characters from Neverland. Given a sketchbook by her therapist, Wendy starts to draw. But is The Wendy Project merely her safe space, or a portal between worlds?

My Review

Disclaimer: I got a Netgalley ARC of this graphic novel in exchange for an honest review.

I don’t have much to say about The Wendy Project. It was a nice modern retelling of Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie.

In this retelling, Wendy gets into a car accident that kills one of her brothers. Grieving, she believes he’s still alive and tries to find him. It’s a contemporary with fantasy elements woven into, and I think it works really well.

The plot wasn’t anything new – yes, I know it’s a retelling! – but it was still a compelling, quick read. I think young adult readers would definitely enjoy this graphic novel.

As for the illustrations, I wasn’t too keen on the artwork at first. I thought they were a bit too simplistic, but I slowly fell in love with it. Most of the illustrations are in black and white, but a few are in (I believe) water colours and the colouring is gorgeous. I read a digital copy, but I’m sure it’s even more beautiful in paper format.

Big thank you to the publisher for allowing me to read this in advance!

Review: The Wendy Project

Review: Eliza and Her Monsters

31931941Title: Eliza and Her Monsters
Author: Francesca Zappia
Release date: May 2017
Publisher: HarperCollins
Pages: 400 pages
Format: Hardcover
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Description (from goodreads)In the real world, Eliza Mirk is shy, weird, and friendless. Online, she’s LadyConstellation, the anonymous creator of the wildly popular webcomic Monstrous Sea. Eliza can’t imagine enjoying the real world as much as she loves the online one, and she has no desire to try.

Then Wallace Warland, Monstrous Sea’s biggest fanfiction writer, transfers to her school. Wallace thinks Eliza is just another fan, and as he draws her out of her shell, she begins to wonder if a life offline might be worthwhile.

But when Eliza’s secret is accidentally shared with the world, everything she’s built—her story, her relationship with Wallace, and even her sanity—begins to fall apart.

My review

I learned that Eliza and Her Monsters was a thing that was happening when I watched one of BooksandLala‘s videos, and I already knew that I would love it.  The expectations when I picked up this book were oh-so high, I was certain to be disappointed but to my greatest relief I was not let down!

Eliza and Her Monsters is all I had dreamed of. I could relate to Eliza so much. I’ve never been “internet famous” and I’m sure it’d be something that would make me highly uncomfortable, but being yourself online is so much easier (at least for me), and this novel illustrates it beautifully. I think a lot of young adults (and not so young) will be able to connect with that.

Eliza Mirk (LadyConstellation) is the author/illustrator of this really famous webcomic series, but she chose to stay anonymous. Nobody knows who she is except for her immediate family and a couple of online friends. In ‘real life’ though, she has no friend, she can’t seem to be able to really connect with her family and she has very few interests. Then one day, she meets Wallace, a new boy at her school who’s dealing with his own past. Eliza learns that he’s really into her series and even writes fanfiction for it. From there, their friendship develops slowly into something more.

This novel also deals with PTSD and anxiety which I think Zappia incorporated really well into the story.

I had some issues with how Wallace reacted at times, especially towards the end, but I appreciated that his behaviour was addressed and made clear that it wasn’t okay which makes this book even more awesome!

Overall, this book is amazing, and you should consider picking it up if you ever have the chance! It’s definitely one of the best YA books I’ve read this year 🙂


Review: Eliza and Her Monsters

Review: The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo

29405093Title: The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo
Author: Amy Schumer
Release date: August 2016
Publisher: Gallery Books
Pages: Approx. 6hrs
Format: Audiobooks
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐1/2

Description (from goodreads)In The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, Amy mines her past for stories about her teenage years, her family, relationships, and sex and shares the experiences that have shaped who she is – a woman with the courage to bare her soul to stand up for what she believes in, all while making us laugh.

Ranging from the raucous to the romantic, the heartfelt to the harrowing, this highly entertaining and universally appealing collection is the literary equivalent of a night out with your best friends – an unforgettable and fun adventure that you wish could last forever. Whether she’s experiencing lust-at-first-sight while in the airport security line, sharing her own views on love and marriage, admitting to being an introvert, or discovering her cross-fit instructor’s secret bad habit, Amy Schumer proves to be a bighearted, brave, and thoughtful storyteller that will leave you nodding your head in recognition, laughing out loud, and sobbing uncontrollably – but only because it’s over.

My review

I decided to pick this book on a whim. I needed an audiobook for my commute, and it’s the first one that seemed interesting (and not too long) on OverDrive. Bonus point, it’s read by Amy Schumer. I’m a sucker for memoirs read by their author.

To be honest, I didn’t really know who she was. I mean, sure I’ve seen Trainwreck (love it) and I’ve watched her HBO special, but that’s about it. I think she’s hilarious, but I wasn’t a “fan”, at least not until I read her book.

What I was expecting: a whole lot of sex jokes.

What I got: a bunch of sex jokes mixed in with some funny life/family anecdotes mixed in with some more serious stuff. A perfect balance.

She talks about women in the entertainment industry, about her childhood and realizing your parents can make mistakes and how gutting it can be, she touches a bit on her dating life, but she also talks about more serious topics like physical and sexual abuse.

I really appreciated her honesty and her ability to keep the tone of the book light even when she was speaking about difficult issues.

Amy Schumer has a very lively personality, and I wish I had half of her self-confidence. I’m definitely going to check out her TV show and whatever movies she makes in the future.

All in all, I highly recommend this book if you like memoirs, humour, Amy Schumer or all of the above! :p

Review: The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo

Review: Crooked Kingdom

22299763Title: Crooked Kingdom
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Release date: September 2016
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Pages: 546
Format: Hardcover
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Description (from goodreads)Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.

My review

I’m just going to fangirl here. I absolutely ADORED this book. It gave me all the FEELS. ALL OF THE FEELS, GUYS. This series is seriously amazing, I cannot recommend it enough! Leigh Bardugo is a queen. I need more. Please.

Warning: Since Crooked Kingdom is the second book, this review may contain minor spoilers for Six of Crows. You’ve been warned.

So at the end of Six of Crows the gang makes it back to Kerch but they obviously don’t get paid because sleaze-Jan-Van-Eck and scumbag-Pekka-Rollins. Of course Kaz wants to take back what he was promised and more. “When you can’t beat the odds, change the game”, and that’s exactly what they’re going to do!

Aaaah! This book was fantastic and oh so full of feelings. Whether they want it or not, the gang all started to care about each other, and it is beautiful! They are all trying to protect one another in their own way. I was particularly touched by the friendship between Nina and Inej. I can’t resist a good f/f ship, and this one was ended out to me on a silver platter. In such a situation though, feelings can be your greatest weakness…

Kaz watched him for a long moment. “That’s the right move, Jes.”
This line made me cry my life.

This well-crafted sequel is fast-paced, packed with twists and turns, feels and enough ships to squeal and cry over. It’s all a fan(girl/boy)’s heart needs! And the last chapter 😍😍😍. Crooked Kingdom has one of the most satisfying endings I have ever read. BRAVO.


Review: Crooked Kingdom

Wrap-up: May 2017

May is coming to an end, and I couldn’t be happier. What a crazy month it has been! I adopted a new cat, Jemma(you can see her on my IG, link in the sidebar), at the end of April, and Fitz hasn’t been very welcoming, so it caused a lot of stress both for the cats and me. I finished my (second) first year of college after deciding I wanted to do something else with my life and I’ve been job hunting all month. Phew! The only great thing about this month was that I procrastinated a lot and so I was finally able to kick the reading slump I was in, thanks ACOWAR!

Here are the books I read in May:

Posted reviews:

The Nature of Jade by Deb Caletti

What have you read in May? Any good ones you would recommend?

Wrap-up: May 2017

Review: The Nature of Jade

JadeTitle: The Nature of Jade
Author: Deb Caletti
Release date: 2007
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Pages: 288
Format: Hardcover
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Description (from goodreads)Jade DeLuna is too young to die. She knows this, and yet she can’t quite believe it, especially when the terrifying thoughts, loss of breath, and dizzy feelings come. Since being diagnosed with Panic Disorder, she’s trying her best to stay calm, and visiting the elephants at the nearby zoo seems to help. That’s why Jade keeps the live zoo webcam on in her room, and that’s where she first sees the boy in the red jacket. A boy who stops to watch the elephants. A boy carrying a baby.

My Review

This book was a little jem. It’s one of those quiet yet powerful “coming of age” stories. The Nature of Jade is about family and facing your fears. About growing up and realizing your parents are humans after all. And love. This novel is filled with it and not only the romantic kind of love. This is realistic YA fiction at its best.

If you can’t tell yet, I absolutely adored this novel (and not only because it featured elephants, my favourite animal)! It’s one of those books I wish I had read when I was 18. Jade reminds me a lot of myself when I was her age. She has an anxiety disorder, but she doesn’t let it define who she is. She’s strong and capable she just doesn’t quite know it yet.

She starts volunteering at the nearby zoo where she works with the elephants. It becomes this safe place she retreats to. Her parents are having relationship issues and the household becomes tense. Her father thinks sport is the solution to any problems and her mother (PTA mom) is a little bit too involved in Jade’s school community. Her brother is the sweetest, a little Narnia fanboy!

Jade also not so accidentally meets this boy with his baby and of course, she falls in love (not the main focus of the book and it doesn’t cure her anxiety!!!), but love is never not complicated.

I guess I’m late in reading this book. It did come out in 2007 after all, but it’s such a beautiful read. More people should read it. I highly recommend it!

Review: The Nature of Jade