Once and for all – Book Review

I was in a terrible reading slump and decided to go for my favourite Ya author of all times – Sarah Dessen. I knew I would be out of the slump in no time but I also knew I would be crying heaps.

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Source: own Pic

Synopsis:

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

The book revolves around wedding planning and should have been happy, because weddings are! But then Sarah Dessen is known for her books on family dynamics and how each story is so much relatable. The mother of the protagonist is a wedding planner but her own marriage life ended tragically and she is cynical when it comes to happily ever afters. So is her parter at work, William !! You can’t expect Louna to be any different given her tragedy in life.

Ambrose is fun-loving, easy-going and everything that Louna isn’t and she finds him irritating at the beginning. There wasn’t any Insta-love, and their relationship progresses slowly and beautifully.

Louna’s tragic past struck close to home because of me losing a friend couple of months back – the desperation of not-knowing and the falling apart after knowing.

The book is written in alternate time formats – past and present, but the beauty of it is, there aren’t any chapter titles to let you know its from the past and they aren’t exactly alternating… And that caught my attention because I liked reading about the Louna from both times and I liked being surprised to find myself reading an extract from the past after reading two chapters from the present. One was cynical and the other was love-struck. And especially after the tragedy is revealed, it hurt so much read to about it, I was bawling my eyes out 😦

Beautifully written, satirical and yet touching at the same time!

My rating : 4 stars

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More about the book

Author: Sarah Dessen

Publishers: Viking Books for Young Readers

Published on: June 2017

Source: E-book purchased from Amazon.in

Pages: 363

Standalone|YA Contemporary|

 

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Love & Other Train wrecks – Book Review

Author : Leah Konen

Publisher : Katherine Tegen Books

Pub Date: 02 Jan 2018

Source : E-book, Own copy

Get the book from Amazon.in.

You can find my review in Goodreads page as well.

Book Blurb

A twenty-four-hour romance about two teens who meet—and perhaps change their minds about love—on a train ride to Upstate New York in the middle of a snowstorm

One train ride. Two strangers.34848190

Noah is a hopeless romantic. He’s heading back home for one last chance with his first love, whom he broke up with when he went off to college.

Ammy doesn’t believe in true love—her parents being prime examples. She’s escaping from a mom who can’t take care of her to a dad who may not even want her. That is, until one winter night when Noah and Ammy find themselves in the same Amtrak car heading to Upstate New York.

After a train-wreck first encounter between the two of them, the Amtrak train suddenly breaks down due to a snowstorm. Desperate to make it to their destinations, Noah and Ammy have no other option but to travel together. What starts off as a minor detour turns into the whirlwind journey of a lifetime, and over the course of the night they fall in love. But come morning their adventure takes an unexpected turn for the worst. Can one night can really change how they feel about love…and the course of their lives forever?

My thoughts

After reading a disastrous Fantasy, I was in for something light and cute and boy oh boy! This was everything I wanted, to fish me out of a slump.

Noah & Ammy

The train isn’t as romantic as I thought it would be..

Both Noah & Ammy are travelling via the Amtrak to the same destination (which they don’t know first) and do not get along from the very beginning when Ammy mocks him for reading the Hunger Games (hello, what?!).

Ammy comes off a rude person, harboring a lot of family issues and guilty of betraying her mother when she needed her the most, but she does have her reasons. Noah, too is guilty of breaking up with his girlfriend, who honestly isn’t all likeable and comes off as bossy, but he is blind with love. And guilt. A lot of it! When they are stranded on the train at the middle of nowhere, Noah and Ammy decide to walk to the nearest bus station and continue with their journey as both of them have to be at someplace that day. Begins a series of misadventures but eventful ones that lead them both to spend an awful lot of time together , that’s told in a series of time frames (which I really liked!)

Noah is this huge hearted, romantic and is very likeable. And I don’t understand how he can be that dense about his girlfriend and still wants to get back with her. I loved him throughout the book. On the other hand, Ammy isn’t likeable, and I didn’t like it how she turned mean again towards the end, like for the most stupidest reason. And she is a wannabe feminist! The one who cannot differentiate between actual male domination and sweet humanly gestures.

The book also talks about painful divorces and mental illness which I felt was not overdone. Ammy’s friendship with the step-sister and her weird sense of gratitude towards it, well that was a tad overdone.

The book is cheesy, cute and is apt for a quick read. I loved the writing. I loved cheesy lines like this one..

You are like a book I want to read forever…

And the hitchhiking through the snow (bcos I love snow!)..

Everything looks magical in the snow, like something straight out of a fantasy novel…

car, road, road trip

I give 4 stars simply because I love some good, light hearted reads such as this one..

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Snow image courtesy : Pexels (free Photo)

 

 

When Dimple Met Rishi – Book review

Author : Sandhya Menon

Publisher : Hodder & Stoughton, an imprint of Hachette

Pub Date: May 2017

Source : Part of August book box

Get the book from Amazon.in

Book Blurb

Meet Dimple.

Her main aim in life is to escape her traditional parents, get to university and begin her plan for tech world domination. 28458598

Meet Rishi.

He’s rich, good-looking and a hopeless romantic. His parents think Dimple is the perfect match for him, but she’s got other plans…

Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works even harder to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.

As joyfully refreshing as Rainbow Rowell, Jenny Han and Nicola Yoon, When Dimple Met Rishi is a frothy, funny contemporary romance told from the dual perspectives of two Indian American protagonists. While Dimple is fighting her family traditions, Rishi couldn’t be happier to follow in the footsteps of his parents – could sparks fly between this odd couple, or is this matchmaking attempt doomed to fail?

My Thoughts:

One line review – Cute YA contemporary romance that is sure to keep you busy for the day.

Let me just say I had too many eye-rolls at the beginning of the book where I felt few Indian traditions were overdone. I thought I was not going to like it, and I started judging too much. But after a few pages in, the book was mushy and cute and I started liking it.

I still cant accept the fact that 18 year olds are asked to choose life partners. Yeah, in some village in India, you can believe it is still happening. But not in the US of A. That one gave me a hard time believing it. And that too Rishi was the one who was kinda interested in that approach was even more unbelievable. Trust me, guys that young, do not have marriage in their mind.

But I was glad that the story was not completely about how Rishi is throwing himself at Dimple’s feet and instead about how she falls for him. I loved how Dimple was portrayed as bold and passionate. And how she urges Rishi to give in to his passion. And yes, parents decide your career path in India (mostly!) and Rishi’s life was a perfect example of how some parents steer you towards their unfinished dreams.

Apart from certain clichés, the book is certainly likeable. My rating 3 stars 🙂

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Tell Me Three Things – Book Review

Author : Julie Buxbaum

Publisher : Delacorte Press

Pub Date: 05 April 2016

Source : Own copy

Get the book from Amazon.in

Book Blurb :

Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Tell Me Three ThingsJust when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

Julie Buxbaum mixes comedy and tragedy, love and loss, pain and elation, in her debut YA novel filled with characters who will come to feel like friends.

My Thoughts

I love a good contemporary and this book just made it to my favorite list of contemporaries. A dead parent, a gay character, a love triangle – everything i usually get bore of in YA books. But this book was neatly written, nothing too much of all these things, just a little dash of them.

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I loved the writing, the way Jessie n SN email/IM each other. The identity was really very obvious and that would have turned me off too usually but not this book.  What can i say, i'm seriously bitten by this one ❤

The one most important thing I loved was… how beautifully they portrayed the loss of a loved one, how each one was dealing with the grief. Not just concentrating on Jessie, but her step mom, her step brother Theo, here dad and finally Ethan (I love that name!!) And how they are trying to mend relationships with one another.

Fav quote:

There's nothing lonelier than a hand on a glass.. Maybe because it's so rarely reciprocated.

Tell me three things:

1)I love this book

2)I'm definitely reading all Julie Buxbaum books

3)My rating is 5/5 😀

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By your side – Book Review

I’ve loved all the books written by Kasie West and when i heard that her latest is out, i felt i MUST read it. Because she writes cute, feel-good contemporaries.

You can get this book from Amazon

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Book blurb: When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn’t think things could get any worse. But that’s before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her. Autumn doesn’t know much about Dax except that he’s trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he’s not exactly the ideal person to be stuck with. Still, she just keeps reminding herself that it is only a matter of time before Jeff, her almost-boyfriend, realizes he left her in the library and comes to rescue her.

Only he doesn’t come. No one does.
Instead it becomes clear that Autumn is going to have to spend the next couple of days living off vending-machine food and making conversation with a boy who clearly wants nothing to do with her. Except there is more to Dax than meets the eye. As he and Autumn first grudgingly, and then not so grudgingly, open up to each other, Autumn is struck by their surprising connection. But can their feelings for each other survive once the weekend is over and Autumn’s old life, and old love interest, threaten to pull her from Dax’s side?

My thoughts..

Who wouldn’t love to get locked in a library.. i wouldn’t mind but definitely not for three days *gulp*. And with a history of panic attacks, Autumn must survive the three days by engaging in not-so-welcome conversations with her unexpected companion Dax. I’m all for hate-to-love tropes and dived right into the story.

Let’s just say I wasn’t completely satisfied. There’s a dark,mysterious guy and the goody-goody girl but then there’s anxiety and mental health issues in as well. Some of the things were just not acceptable, how can friends be totally superficial, like they cant seem to notice Autumn has anxiety issues. Yes the bad boy (at least by reputation) and the girl romance was alluring, but that wasn’t the main part of this book. And add in the love triangle and jealous, over protective best-friend. Nope, i loved The Fill-in boyfriend and P.S. I like you and other contemporaries by Kasie and this wasn’t like that.

And I didn’t like the cover :/ Also the first thing that intrigued people before the book was published was “locked in a library”. Sadly, it could have been a supermarket or a laundromat for it didn’t make any difference. The bookish or literary love (Like ‘Words in Deep Blue’ by Cath Crowley, centered around a book store) that i was expecting wasn’t there, it was just a place where they found themselves locked in, together. The only thing that’s remotely bookish, is the copy of Hamlet that Dax carries around with him.

My rating would be 3/5. A 3 and not 2.5 because when Autumn was with Dax, I was able to relate to the Kasie West i had grown to enjoy..you know, the swoon-worthy scenes n all..

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