Throwback Thursday Book Review: Their Eyes Were Watching God

Video

I started a new feature on my channel called Throwback Thursday Book Review. I’ll talk about books I’ve fallen in love with in the past that I want to share with everyone.

I review Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston in this video.

Have you read this book? What did you like it? Would you like to read this book?

Review: Dash & Lily’s Book Of Dares

By Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Dash & Lily's

“I’ve left some clues for you. If you want them, turn the page. If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”  So begins the latest whirlwind romance from the New York Times bestselling authors of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?”

I decided to read this book a week before December 1st. I was ready to get into the holiday spirit early! I was so excited to delve in because the plot sounded so exciting! A search for Mr. Right by passing a red notebook around different places sharing dares, dreams, and desires. Heck yes, I was in for this adventure!

I opened to the first page and began to read. After about three chapters in, I almost stopped reading altogether. Dash wasn’t coming off as very dashing. He was quite the egotistical sixteen-year-old who has absolutely no holiday cheer. Let’s just say I wasn’t feeling very jolly, or fond of his character. Lily on the other hand was interesting and the epitome of Christmas festivities. It was also nice getting to know her fun and quirky family. So I continued on. Determined to find out where the notebook would lead them and to give Dash a chance.

Let me tell you, I’m really glad I kept reading. It got better! I was taken all around New York City to places I hope to visit myself someday. The city was beautifully described and I now seriously need to try a chocolate pizza! I didn’t even know they existed. Chocolate Lunchables pizza from back in the day doesn’t count! Do those even exist still?

Any who, let’s get back on track. Surprisingly, Dash grew on me. The reason he’s not very cheery during the holidays is revealed, which gave me a soft spot for him. I loved that without knowing it both Dash and Lily give each other unforeseen gifts, the kind that helps them to grow as individuals during Christmas break. It was exciting to see them develop in different ways.

This book also contained great points on relationships. How you may be looking so hard for the perfect person you’ve created in your head, that you could be missing out on your perfect person in real life. As well as, not being afraid of taking chances because something is too good to be true. Taking chances is just part of the fun when getting to know someone.

So get out of your heads people and go take some risks! Or perhaps you could go put your own red notebook in a bookstore somewhere. Then wait to see who happens upon it and what might happen. ; )

Tell Me: Have you read this? If you have what did you think? Who was your favorite character? If you haven’t read it, do you think you will? 

Review: Along For The Ride

 

 

By Sarah Dessen

AlongForRide_FINAL.indd

It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.

A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.

I must admit this is my first Sarah Dessen book. I know, I know *gasp*.  I honestly haven’t read this type of book in a while, but….

This was exactly what I needed! It wasn’t a, my heart is swooning for days after book, but a typical fluffy and light romance. What was inside was somewhat predictable, a little cheesy at times, but I completely ate it up! There were just so many moments where I caught myself laughing out loud.

I enjoyed Auden as the main character. She was likeable. I was able to relate to her, just not to the same degree. I wasn’t a very girly girl growing up and the extent of my girl talk was about boys only. I wasn’t into the whole makeup, hair, shopping kind of gossip all the other girls in my class would be chattering away about. So when she steps into her step mothers office: Pink, Orange, accented with lots and lots of girly things. I would have had the same reaction, shock.

The characters in this story were developed really well. Every one of them had their own personalities and stories to tell. The three Amiga’s Maggie, Leah, and Esther added a lot of depth to the story. At first like Auden, I didn’t really care for them. They were girly, gossiped, and not very interesting. As we continue to get to know them however, we begin to see that first impressions aren’t always what they seem. Not only are they girly and silly, they are actually clever. In other words they turn out to be pretty cool.

For the most part I adored Auden and Eli’s relationship. Her nightly adventures with this mysterious boy, who like her, can’t sleep at night. Who she finds out has problems of his own he’s trying to deal with. I enjoyed the fact that they both had the whole not sleeping thing going on. It helped them to connect. I also liked how he was trying to help her experience things she never got to do in her childhood. The whole them getting to know each other along with the cute things that happen in between were great.

I was just slightly annoyed by a few things in their relationship. Like how non-assertive Eli was. Auden sought him out in the beginning over and over until it was a given they’d meet at a certain place every night. Then when they had a little tiff, neither one of them talked to each other for like two weeks! Seriously though, when they reunited….

slow clap

I also caught myself getting frustrated at Auden quite a bit when she was acting like a noob. Why yes, yes you should take the baby from your step mom because she’s having a nervous break down. Not just ignore it and go to your room like nothing is happening. Or when on her first night there she ends up doing something completely out of character and dumb.

I mean I understand it was to make her transition into the local’s social order harder, but I think her social awkwardness would have sufficed.

In any case, my favorite thing about this book was that it had a great message. The one thing Auden struggles with the most throughout this book is with change. It’s a constant theme. She has heard from her mother over and over again that people don’t change. She goes into the summer with all of these pre conceived notions of how people work, including her self.

Examples: Her father is an egotistical jerk who can’t see what’s in front of him and is repeating the same mistakes he made in his first marriage. Her brother will always be a free spirit who is constantly traveling, finding one exciting moment to the next, never keeping one girlfriend for very long. Her stepmother is an annoying pink Barbie doll with no backbone. And her mother, who she always has to agree with, demands academic perfection from her, and thinks anything girly or pink is weak.

During her carefree summer, Auden begins to question this theory and starts to make her own conclusions as to what she believes. She also comes into her own as a person.

Along For the Ride was just one of those books that made me smile, giggle, and gave me a happy feeling after reading it.

 

Tell Me: Have you read this? If you have what did you think? Did you like Auden and Eli together? If you haven’t read it, do you think you will? What Sarah Dessen book should I read next?