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The Bookstore - Deborah Meyler


This is probably the easiest and longest review I have ever written. I have to confess, I have never highlighted so much in an e-book before in my life! Every moment I read this book I had another thought about what I would write in this review. There are quite a few of my opinions I won’t get to mention, but I’ll try my best to get as much in as I can!

The main character in this story is Esme Garland. In all honesty she was not a character I particularly liked. She made so many mistakes, constantly changed her mind on a moment’s notice without any thought about it and acted like a selfish child for quite a lot of the story. With that said, she was a very real character. Her selfishness came through a few times, the most prominent occurrences being when she repeatedly planned, and sometimes followed through, on spending her money she had earned in The Owl on books or knickknacks, when in reality she should have been saving every last penny for herself and her baby to live once the baby had arrived. But this seemed so real, so true to what a person would actually do. She wanted some things for herself and had to sometimes avoid thinking of the very hard future ahead of her. However her selfishness manifested itself in a way that I cannot approve of no matter how much I hate the character of Mitchell. When she realises she is pregnant she tries to tell him but he breaks up with her before she gets a chance. Instead of telling him then, or perhaps in the next few days, that she is pregnant, she keeps silent. When he finds out and confronts her she replies with:
“Why would I tell you, if you didn’t want to be with me?”
Um, maybe because he is the father and it is his right to know? Regardless of whether he broke up with you or not, he deserves to know that he had a baby on the way. 
Her choice in men I am even less forgiving about. She is a stranger in a foreign land that does not seem to have many friends and fell in love with, quite possibly, the single most awful man I have ever had the displeasure to read about. Mitchell Van Leuven made no sense to me whatsoever. Not a single one of his actions seemed plausible and I find it very hard to understand how Esme even came to like him, never mind love him, in the first place. He had not a single nice thing to say throughout the book and his one redeemable quality, if you like, was that he was rich. That’s it. He was a rude, manipulative, patronising, arrogant, horrible man. He had to have everything his own way and wanted everything to be a sort of drama. An example of a way he manipulates Esme into doing exactly what he wants could be found when he tries talking her into going out and she does not want to.
“Say yes, or I’ll have to start looking through my little black book. Say yes, or I’ll call Clarissa.”
Who even does that? Even worse she decides to go out with him! I don’t know about you but if a man ever had the audacity to speak to me like that he’d be very sorry, not agreeing to meet him for drinks.He also treats her like a child, constantly feeling the need to correct her, because of course he is “all knowing”.
“Oh, pain au chocolat!” ….. “It’s a chocolate croissant in these parts…”
“There was a raccoon! I think so, anyway.” “No, they’re nocturnal. It was probably a rat.”
I truly don’t understand why she continues to see him! To me, as a reader, her attraction to him made absolutely zero sense. Mitchell annoyed me every time he was even mentioned. He even had the daring to tell Sheila, a friend of Esme’s, that “she was gay because she hadn’t met the right man yet”!
Mitchell seemed to find pleasure in other peoples discomfort and this is the only explanation that I can find for how he acts within the novel. But I will not accept it as an excuse for how he acts in the latter part of the novel. He gets far worse in his actions towards Esme and yet she still forgave him everything. When they break up she pines for him quite desperately. I understand that when you go through a breakup you tend to overlook the other persons flaws, with some willing to take back their ex’s. However Esme takes this to a new extreme. Granted, she is pregnant with his child but that never seems to be even part of the reason she overlooks his actions. She repeatedly thinks he is interested in other women and sleeping with them and yet still wants to be with him! She can’t even bring herself to trust him!
I could go on and on about how bad a boyfriend Mitchell is to Esme; I could tell you about how he openly stares at and describes another woman’s breasts and calls them delectable to get a rise out of Esme. I could tell you how, when Esme leaves, he gets the woman’s number. Or I could tell you about how he then tries to push Esme, 6 months into her pregnancy, into a threesome with this woman. But if I get into all that properly I’ll keep ranting until this review is pages and pages long.
As much as I hated every page Mitchell was on, I did actually enjoy this novel. In many respects it was very realistic, though some of it was phrased quite awkwardly with the author trying extremely hard to be deep and meaningful. I'm afraid that I have reviewed very little of my actual novel, because I was so caught up in the main characters. But in all honesty, while the author tries to make this about more than Mitchell and Esme, In reality it isn't. That said, all in all I really enjoyed the book and thought the ending absolutely perfect for this story. I would recommend it if you can resist the persistent need to punch an imaginary character.
Source: http://livetoreadlovetoread.blogspot.ie/2013/09/review-bookstore-by-deborah-meyler.html
Cinder (Lunar Chronicles) - Marissa Meyer

This book was a thoroughly enjoyable read. It starts off with Cinder, a orphan cyborg who was taken in by a man whose wife despises her. When he dies his wife is left with Cinder as a ward. She forces Cinder to work for her keep, using profits from Cinder's job to fund her own lifestyle. And thus we are introduced to this new, modern version of Cinderella set in the distant future. 

The author was able to remain true to the old fairytale without making it feel as though you were simply reading Cinderella in the future. Many things had a slight twist, like her friendship with her step-sister and the plague that is ravaging the whole world. Marissa Meyer managed to make this a thoroughly original novel, with the tale of Cinderella used as only a starting off point. 
While the main plot twist was obvious from nearly the start of the book, I still found myself reading on wanting to know exactly how this was revealed and what would happen after. 
This book was extremely good and I would recommend it for anyone, and I am eagerly anticipating the next installment of this book.

Source: http://livetoreadlovetoread.blogspot.ie/2013/09/review-cinder-by-marissa-meyer_7.html
Crown of Midnight - Sarah J. Maas
The second instalment of this series begins with Celaena undertaking her new job as King’s Champion by assassinating those who have earned the King’s displeasure. Through this she comes into contact with some people from her past. I would definitely recommend reading the e-novellas before reading this, just to meet anyone who appears in this book. I didn’t read them until I had finished this book and it really felt like I was reading a series backwards, spoiling all the characters I met in Crown of Midnight but should have met in the novellas.

My favourite character, understandably, is Celaena. Sarah J Maas has written a perfect character in my opinion. Celaena is perfect in her imperfections. She is a kick-ass assassin that could hold her own in a fight with any man in this series, but still manages to be a shopaholic like an average teenager. When I am reading these books I always feel like Celaena could be a friend with mine. A character I can connect with as much as I can with Celaena is a rare thing! I love how she made mistakes in many ways, such as judging too harshly in some situations and letting her anger get the better of her. She is a fully fleshed out character that is utterly lovable even as you plead with her in your head not to do certain things or say certain things.

(This review seems far too vague but it’s either this or a spoilerific review!)

Chaol, Celaena’s love interest (unless of course you’re a Dorian fan, in which case you couldn’t be more wrong! Team Chaol all the way!) becomes a lot becomes a much more fleshed out character in this  book, something which added quite a bit to the story over all. 

There were no other characters featured heavily. Nehemia was again present but not much was developed from her personality in the previous book. Dorian was, of course, present again and there were a few scenes from his perspective. I have to admit that I really enjoyed these. Even though I’m a Chaol fan, seeing how much Dorian truly loved Celaena was lovely. For anybody who hasn’t read this yet, there will be a big surprise for Dorian in the course of the book! 

There were no primary characters I actively disliked, though there were a few secondary characters. The King of course begs to be hated, along with Roland, a new character to the book in the form of Dorian’s cousin. Another new character I could not stand was Archer. He was a part of Celaena’s latest assignment from the king and every time he was on the page he annoyed me. I felt justified in this by the end of the book, which you’ll find out about!

The actual romance in the book was tooth-achingly sweet in the best way possible. The romance felt very natural and wasn’t forced at all. One of my pet peeves is insta-love, and no one can accuse this romance of being an insta-love. There is of course a bit of a love triangle, though I wouldn’t consider it a turn off for the book as it is very clear who Celaena prefers!


I have only praise for Maas’ writing style which flowed really well. I hate descriptions that last pages and Maas managed to describe everything perfectly without resorting to this. I would fully recommend this book which is far superior to its predecessor. If you didn’t enjoy the first one, I think you should still read this one, and if you liked or loved the first book in the series then Crown of Midnight will definitely be in your top ten for the year! Go get your hands on this immediately!
Source: http://livetoreadlovetoread.blogspot.ie/2013/09/review-crown-of-midnight-by-sarah-j-maas.html
Beautiful Disaster  - Jamie McGuire
Travis is your typical bad boy, i.e, takes part in street fights for money, is covered in tattoos and sleeps with girls and tosses them away. Abby however is the good girl who has gone to college with her friend America to get away from her father. When America starts dating Travis' room mate (and cousin) Abby starts becoming friends with Travis. When they make a bet and Abby loses she has to stay in Travis' apartment for a month. When she starts to see Travis for who he truly is, she begins to fall in love. But falling in love isn't always enough..

Abby has gone to college to get away from a deep dark past which we find out about half way through the book. Now, no spoilers, but it really didn’t seem like that dark a past though I will admit she obviously needed to get away from her father. Travis is your stereotypical bad boy. He takes part in street fights for money and sleeps with girls and tosses them away. Nothing new so far, right?  That’s pretty much how the rest of the book goes on, with new nothing really unique to this book happening, except for one aspect of the story which I’ll come to later in the review.
Now down to the characters. The main characters in the story are Abby Abernathy and Travis Maddox. The whole story is told from Abby’s point of view. Through this the author constantly tries to explain away Travis’ behaviour but never really succeeds. You see, Travis is a manipulative, controlling man who seems to only want Abby to be a part of his life, his world, and nothing else. This is definitely not a love story! In my opinion it takes it a few steps past “Twilight” into an obviously abusive relationship. (Slight spoilers ahead) In one part of the book, after Abby and Travis break up, he manipulates her into going to his family home and cooking dinner for him, his father and his brothers. All because she said she would when they were still together and now he doesn’t want to have to disappoint his family by telling them that he and Abby have broken up! 
That’s not to say that Abby is a character I particularly liked either. She allows Travis to put her into these situations. A number of times she sees clearly that he is trying to manipulate her and she still just goes along with it! The only aspect of this story that was different to most love stories  was the thoroughly unhealthy relationship Abby had with Travis. From the start they used each other’s weaknesses against each other. Abby using other men to make Travis jealous and Travis using his many manipulating ways to keep Abby under his control. I truly disliked the main characters in this story and can barely remember any of the secondary characters, who serve only to provide a backdrop to the so called “romance”.  
The romance between Abby and Travis is basically the whole plot, with little distractions along the way. It was a very slow paced read, and went in circles continually going back to Travis and Abby breaking up and then their reconciliation. For me it was a struggle to get as far as I did in the book and I never managed to finish. I simply couldn’t force myself to continue reading. In general I would not recommend this book, however I know it may appeal to those who think obsession is equal to true love. I would recommend this book if you enjoyed “Fifty Shades of Grey” or “Twilight”.
Source: http://livetoreadlovetoread.blogspot.ie/2013/09/review-beautiful-disaster-by-jamie.html