Saturday, August 3, 2013

August TBR

This month's To Be Read pile will be short and sweet. I have so much going on this month with move-in and rowing tryouts and such. Hopefully I'll get everything on this list read.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
First and foremost, I want to reread one of my favorite books in the Harry Potter series. There isn't much to say about this one, it's pretty much given that it'll be amazing. 

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
I bought this book a while back, and it was featured in my first (and only) Wishlist Wednesday, but I haven't gotten around to reading it. I've only heard good things about it though, so I'm really excited to start! 

The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)
This book is shipping to my house from the UK as I type this. I really hope it gets here by the time I head to college. I am dying to read it! 

So that's basically it for what's coming up in August, I'm really excited to read all of these brilliant books. 

Friday, August 2, 2013

The Elite by Kiera Cass

Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Compared to The Selection, this book was a real let-down. I was so excited when I finally got to sit down and read it. But from the very first pages, I could tell it wasn't going to "wow" me. 

I feel like Kiera Cass couldn't decide whether or not she liked Prince Maxon while she was writing this. I seriously imagine her sitting at a desk, typing away about how lovely he is, just to realize that she prefers Aspen. So she then types another forty pages or so about Maxon completely ignoring America. Cass literally made me hate Maxon for about half of the book, which is something I never wanted to do. I feel like she didn't plan this out, at all. 

What also bothered me was that America seemed to whine so much more in this book. She complained to Maxon that she needed time to think about whether or not she wanted to be with him, but then when he asked for time, she completely shut him down. America claimed to be seventeen years old, but she honestly acted like she's fourteen throughout the whole book. She couldn't make up her mind about anything, and it was rather frustrating. 

Although I was really disappointed with this book, there were a few good things I'd like to point out. I couldn't really tell if the writing was engaging because it was interesting, or because it was so simple. The Elite didn't provoke any sort of thought while I was reading it (not anything deep or meaningful, anyway), but for some reason or another, I just couldn't put it down. I also really liked that the book also focused on the politics of Illea more than The Selection. I guess that was the only thing stopping The Elite from being an episode of "The Bachelor." 

I also really enjoyed the some of the characters, although the Elite girls got on my nerves. They were just too perfect. I did love reading about Marlee, Carter, and the maids, though. They, along with America's sister May (her fangirling was phenomenal), were what kept me going in the slow parts of this book. 

I know I'll end up reading the new Selection book when it comes out in 2014, but I can't say I'm not afraid of it. I don't want it to be just another teen novel with another love triangle, because that's pretty much all The Elite was for me. 

A bit of a disappointment, I rated it 3/5 stars. Mainly for Maxon still being a cutie. 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

July Wrap-Up

Yet again I've had another not-so-great reading month. I've still just been so busy with college stuff. However, I did manage to read:

The Selection by Kiera Cass
At first, I wasn't thrilled with this, but I ended up absolutely loving it. Definitely a swoon-worthy book full of kingdoms and princes and all that jazz. 5/5 stars. My review of it is here.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
I started rereading this because I mean, come on, who doesn't like a good dose of Harry Potter to de-stress? 5/5 stars, of course! My review of this can be found here.

And finally, 

The Iguana Tree by Michel Stone
I was so, so, so moved by this book. It was simply amazing. 5/5 stars. Review is here.

This may be one of the few months where everything I've read has gotten a perfect rating. Maybe it's been a good reading month after all. Quality over quantity, I always say.