Monday, August 12, 2013

My Summer Reading!

I've added a ton of books to my 'read' list on Good Reads! Here's what I've read this summer!

[All book images and summaries are from Good Reads]

1 & 2. Divergent and Insurgent
Good Reads says: DivergentIn Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue--Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is--she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself. During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are--and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her. InsurgentOne choice can transform you, or destroy you. Every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves, and herself, while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Meg says: I was looking for a new series to read, and I had heard that this was going to be made into a movie, so I gave it a shot. It was really easy to read, and I enjoyed the plot. I will say, though, that it wasn't as good as The Hunger Games, but it definitely filled my dystopian void! I can't wait to read the third book when it comes out in October! I gave both books 4/5 stars. I had a lot of unanswered questions about the 'back story' that I hope are answered in the third book!

3. She's Come Undone
Good Reads says: In this extraordinary coming-of-age odyssey, Wally Lamb invites us to hitch a wild ride on a journey of love, pain, and renewal with the most heartbreakingly comical heroine to come along in years. Meet Dolores Price. She's 13, wise-mouthed but wounded, having bid her childhood goodbye. Stranded in front of her bedroom TV, she spends the next few years nourishing herself with the Mallomars, potato chips, and Pepsi her anxious mother supplies. When she finally orbits into young womanhood at 257 pounds, Dolores is no stronger and life is no kinder. But this time she's determined to rise to the occasion and give herself one more chance before she really goes under.

Meg says: Eh, I had heard good things about this author, and the plot seemed interested. I didn't really like this book, though. There were so many bizarre plot twists in such a short amount of time. I couldn't really relate to the story at all, which was disappointing. I was able to finish it though, which is always a good thing. I gave it 2.5/5 stars.

4. The Fault in our Stars
Good Reads says: Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

Meg says: Loved it! I had heard how lovely this book was, and I couldn't wait to read it. So many people said they balled while reading. I definitely had tears at one point, but there was no sobbing. I thought the main characters were sweet while slightly cynical, and I devoured the book in less than a week. 5/5 stars. This is also being made into a movie, but I'm afriad the movie will ruin the book [Kind of like Zac Efron ruined The Lucky One for me! GR!] Can't wait to read more from this author!

5. It's Kind of a Funny Story
Good Reads says: Like many ambitious New York City teenagers, Craig Gilner sees entry into Manhattan's Executive Pre-Professional High School as the ticket to his future. Determined to succeed at life -- getting into the right high school to get into the right college to get the right job -- Craig studies night and day to ace the entrance exam, and does. That's when things start to get crazy. At his new school, Craig realizes that he's just average, and maybe not even that. He soon sees his once-perfect future crumbling away. The stress becomes unbearable and Craig stops eating and sleeping -- until, one night, he nearly kills himself. Craig's suicidal episode gets him checked into a mental hospital, where his new neighbors include a transsexual sex addict, a girl who has scarred her own face with scissors, and the self-elected President Armelio. There, isolated from the crushing pressures of school and friends, Craig is finally able to confront the sources of his anxiety. Ned Vizzini, who himself spent time in a psychiatric hospital, has created a moving tale about depression, that's definitely a funny story.

Meg says: Well, I read this a little before summer, but I never wrote about it! I can't say enough about this book! I loved it so much. You can't help but root for Craig through all of his adolescent issues. The summary looks like its depressing, but I assure you that it is not. It is kind of a coming of age story, with a 'bump' in the road. And after I read it, I found out that there was a movie, which I ended up enjoyeing as well. [Book was better, though!] 5/5 stars!

6. The Children of Men
Good Reads says: Told with P. D. James’s trademark suspense, insightful characterization, and riveting storytelling, The Children of Men is a story of a world with no children and no future.  The human race has become infertile, and the last generation to be born is now adult. Civilization itself is crumbling as suicide and despair become commonplace. Oxford historian Theodore Faron, apathetic toward a future without a future, spends most of his time reminiscing. Then he is approached by Julian, a bright, attractive woman who wants him to help get her an audience with his cousin, the powerful Warden of England. She and her band of unlikely revolutionaries may just awaken his desire to live . . . and they may also hold the key to survival for the human race.

Meg says: I obviously read a ton of books that are movies. My BF recommended this to me because I was looking for another dystopian fiction. The story line seemed really interesting to me, so I bought it. I read 100 pages in the first sitting, simply because I was waiting for something important to happen. NOTHING HAPPENED. So I put the book down and picked it up the next day. Finally some action, but I read another 100+ pages waiting for more. Repeat one more time, and that was my experience with this book. I had no idea why the main character did the things he did. So, the back story was an interesting concept, but the book didn't really do it for me. 3/5 stars. I'd like to see the movie, even though I heard that they were very different.

7. Eleanor & Park

Good Reads says: Set over the course of one school year in 1986, ELEANOR AND PARK is the story of two star-crossed misfits – smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try. When Eleanor meets Park, you’ll remember your own first love – and just how hard it pulled you under.

Meg says: Um, this book was incredible! It was a light read, and I could really relate to Eleanor. The ending crushed me! Not how I wanted it to end, but I had to accept it. This book is written in kind of a ping pong style, bouncing back from Eleanor's to Park's point of view. I know that some people don't like that type of writing, but I love it. I definitely recommend this if you like YA realistic fiction. ]There is some language.]

8. Now reading: Attachments [Same author as E & P]

Good Reads says: Beth and Jennifer know their company monitors their office e-mail. But the women still spend all day sending each other messages, gossiping about their coworkers at the newspaper and baring their personal lives like an open book. Jennifer tells Beth everything she can't seem to tell her husband about her anxieties over starting a family. And Beth tells Jennifer everything, period. When Lincoln applied to be an Internet security officer, he hardly imagined he'd be sifting through other people's inboxes like some sort of electronic Peeping Tom. Lincoln is supposed to turn people in for misusing company e-mail, but he can't quite bring himself to crack down on Beth and Jennifer. He can't help but be entertained -and captivated- by their stories. But by the time Lincoln realizes he's falling for Beth, it's way too late for him to ever introduce himself. What would he say to her? "Hi, I'm the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you." After a series of close encounters and missed connections, Lincoln decides it's time to muster the courage to follow his heart . . . even if he can't see exactly where it's leading him. Written with whip-smart precision and charm, Attachments is a strikingly clever and deeply romantic debut about falling in love with the person who makes you feel like the best version of yourself. Even if it's someone you've never met.

Meg says: Nothing yet! I'll let ya know! =)


Linking this post up [a couple days early, oops!] with one of my favorite blogs, Juice Boxes & Crayolas!

Notice anything? No professional reading. Fail.

Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Any recommendations for me?

1 comment:

  1. I have read Divergent and have had Insurgent sitting on my shelf for.ever. I just can't bring myself to read it yet, I think I over did it on the dystopian novel for a bit (did you read the Maze Runner series and The Uglies too?). Thanks for the suggestions!