Review Hacklet: The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson ~ I yawped

It totally is.

It totally is.

1 heartI have to make this one a hacklet instead of a full hack because almost all the things I want to talk about are way too specific and spoilers in the sense that it was such a delight to come across certain little parts of this book and I’d hate to be that person who ruins someone else’s reading/watching/viewing/listening experience by nudging them and saying “Just WAIT until you get to the part where…!” I don’t want to be that guy.

So I’ll talk more generally. This book is full of all the elements that potentially make a book a turn-off for me: a love triangle, a bitchy rival, wall-to-wall quirky characters, Wuthering Heights references,  a (yet another) main character numb with grief, a (yet another) missing mother, bits of poetry written by the griever, a love interest that acts like a jerk and yet is still pursued by the narrator, and to top it off, the reviled first person present tense (FPPT) narration. Toxic, right? Nope. This book made me yawp. An honest to goodness Whitman-esque yawp.

In fact, though very different, The Sky is Everywhere gave me the same feeling I get when I read that Whitman poem. Warm, expansive, tingly, full of feeling, earthy. Whitman’s poems invites you to take a sky’s eye view of life, and you can guess from the title, that this book does too. Nelson is very daring to explore the intensities of grief and love and how those wires can get dangerously intensified or even crossed. And yet despite these intense emotions, the book was expertly leavened by the right amount of humor.

I enjoyed this book so much that I had to stop reading a few chapters before the end, so that I wouldn’t have to leave it. The story ends perfectly, and yet I wish it had kept going on. I want to live some more with those characters. I think for now, I’ll go re-read that Whitman and yawp some more.

 

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Review: Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson ~ My Fave of 2013 (so far)

alif_cover

The perfection of this cover isn’t evident until you read the book. Perfection!

No Hacking Needed <3

No Hacking Needed ❤

Verdict: An exhilarating mix of action, fantasy, technology, philosophy, love, politics, religion, metaphysics, and semiotics. Oh and also: genies.

Perfect for: On the back cover there are blurbs describing this book as “a multicultural Harry Potter for the digital age” and “A Golden Compass for the Arab Spring”. I feel like these comparisons are not particularly accurate, other than the fact that I think they are trying to get across that Alif is the kind of fantasy book that is rooted in the world we live in now and that wants to explore some serious issues all while providing the reader a riotous adventure. I also think these comparisons speak to the fact that both adults and teens can enjoy this book on many different levels.

Summary: [Disclaimer: I started reading this book without knowing anything about it, and it was really cool figuring out what was going on.

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Review: Ask the Passengers – by AS King ~ Ask yourself “Why haven’t I read this amazing book yet?”

Wait, I set it up so I can only give 5 hearts?

Wait, I set it up so I can only give 5 hearts?

No Hacking Needed <3

No Hacking Needed ❤

I’ve come out of retirement (aka working full time and not having a summer vacation to read and blog) to post about this lovely, wonderful book. I’m going to make this one short and sweet, but more reading and posting to come in the next two weeks…yay!!!

Verdict: Pure love.

Perfect for: Fans of AS King’s other books.Fans of philosophy and gray areas. Fans of love (not in the romance novel sense but in the sense of Love. L-O-V-E. And how it is a human essential.) Fans of books that know how to handle family and friend dynamics in a realistic way. People who are teens. People who used to be teens.

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Review: Anna Dressed in Blood – by Kendare Blake ~ creepy funny suspenseful GOOD

No Hacking Needed ❤

Verdict:  Mystery/horror/paranormal romance that breaks all the molds of these popular YA genres. A suspenseful page turner with plenty of humor and wit. I don’t even like horror novels, but I loved this book!

Perfect for: People who love YA fantasy/paranormal but want to read something that feels fresh and new. 

Summary: Cas is a teenager with a secret life: he hunts troubled ghosts who have turned dangerous and kills them (for a final time) with a mystical knife he inherited from his father who died battling the dead. He moves from town to town with his Wiccan mother searching for these troubled dead, playing a normal teen by day as best he can. When he gets a tip about a powerfully troublesome ghost named Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas knows in his bones that this will not be just another routine job, but he doesn’t realize just how much the Anna case will change his life. 

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Review: Between Gears – by Natalie Nourigat ~ autobio graphic novel goodness

Portrait of the Graphic Artist as a Young Woman – But not pretentious!

No Hacking Needed ♥

Verdict: Utterly charming graphic novel memoir.

Perfect for: High school students wondering what college might be like; college students wondering what other college students’ life is like; aspiring artists of any genre; lovers of comix memoirs; post-college peeps looking for a little nostalgia. So….pretty much everyone?

Summary: In 2009/2010 Natalie Nourigat chronicled her senior year at University of Oregon by drawing a one page comic for every day of her academic year. The title “Between Gears” refers to the sense of being in between two important stages of life. During the course of the year Natalie stresses about completing college and what to do with her life after graduation – all while balancing a full social life as well as her life as a graphic novel artist.

Find out how this book earned the coveted FIVE HEART rating