Review: Letters to the Lost by Brigid Kemmerer.

Title – Letters to the Lost
Author – Brigid Kemmerer
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 393 pages
Publication Date – April 6th 2017 by Bloomsbury Children’s
ISBN – 9781408883525
RRP – $16.99 NZD
My Rating – ★★★★/5

Juliet has always written letters to her mother and now that her mother is dead, she leaves the letters at her grave. It’s the one thing that’s helping her to cope.

Declan is the kind of guy you don’t want to cross. One day, while he’s doing landscaping at the local cemetery for community service, Declan finds a letter and can’t resist writing back.

Soon, Declan is sharing his pain with a complete stranger. Except Juliet and Declan aren’t strangers. And when real life interferes with their letters, Juliet and Declan discover truths that may have the power to tear them apart.

I received a copy of Letters to the Lost from Bloomsbury Australia to review. This is theDBCMnD6UwAEVOpr second book by Kemmerer I’ve read and I have enjoyed both of them.

I don’t read a lot of contemporary. Or I didn’t used to. I’ve slowly been reading more lately. I think I might have to start reading contemporaries more often.

Anyway, I liked both Juliet and Declan. I was hoping they would end up together eventually. They seemed to have a lot more in common than they thought. They connected over the loss they’ve both experienced in their lives. And they were honest with each other, the way they haven’t been with the people they’re closest to. But then I guess it’s easier opening up to a stranger sometimes I guess.

There were a couple of secrets that came out about both Juliet and Declan’s families. Somehow, instead of making things worse in their lives it helps them. Which is a good thing. But usually when secrets come out they do more damage than good. I won’t say more here other than I really felt for both of them. Especially Declan.

I enjoyed the friendship between Declan and Rev. Rev’s family were really great too. I felt like they were more like brothers than friends. And the way Rev could get through to Declan when no one else could was great.

Letters to the Lost has been one of my favourite contemporaries. Not that I’ve read a lot. But for 2017 this is definitely one of the top ones I’ve read. I didn’t want to put it down. If you love contemporaries and a little romance then I recommend getting a copy of Letters to the Lost.

*Thank you Bloomsbury Australia for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review: Fatal Crossing by Lone Theils.

Title – Fatal Crossing
Series – Nora Sand #1
Author – Lone Theils
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 288 pages
Publication Date – May 1st 2017 by Bonnier Publishing Australia
ISBN – 9781760406530
My Rating – ★★★/5

“When a picture of two Danish girls who disappeared on a boat bound for England in 1985 surfaces in an old suitcase, journalist Nora Sand’s professional curiosity is immediately awakened.

Before she knows it, she is mixed up in the case of a serial killer serving a life sentence in a notorious prison. The quest to discover the truth about the missing girls may be more dangerous that she had ever imagined…”

I received a copy of Fatal Crossing from Bonnier Publishing Australia to review.

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Fatal Crossing has been translated from Danish. I don’t think I’ve read a lot of books that have been translated into English. I can only think of one off the top of my head. I found it hard to get into this at the start because there were some things that I didn’t think needed to be part of the story and I did end up skipping all the parts with what people were eating.

I thought the flashbacks into Nora’s past were unnecessary, especially the parts about what happened with a guy, but after seeing on Goodreads that this is the first book in a series (well, there’s a sequel out but it’s in Danish so I can’t read it) it makes sense why it was part of the story. Even though I was more interested in the photo and the missing girls.

When I was drawn into the story and the mystery around the photo, I really enjoyed the book. It may have had a slow start for me but the second half of the book had more action, especially at the end!

Speaking of the photo and what happened to the two girls in it. Wow. I was not expecting that at all. I don’t want to say anything here about what happened because I hate spoiling books for other people. But I love books where I don’t see the ending coming.

Even though Fatal Crossing took me a while to get into I did end up enjoying it and I’ll be keeping an eye out for the next book. I’m hoping it will be translated into English one day.

If you like mystery books with very surprising endings then I recommend finding a copy of Fatal Crossing.

*Thank you Bonnier Publishing Australia for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

WWW Wednesday [June 21st 2017] –

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This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. All you have to do is answer the following three questions in a post and then put a link to that post in the Comments over at Taking on a World of Words.

The questions are:
1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading – 11
I started Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray yesterday. I think this is the first book in a new trilogy/series. But I’m not really sure.

Anyway, this follows Noemi and Abel, who are from enemy planets, as they try to find a way to save Noemi’s planet, Genesis, from Earth. Or something like that. But Abel is a mech, the best mech ever made.

I think I’m 100 pages in and it’s okay. It’s not really holding my attention like her other trilogy did but I am liking it. I’m hoping it’ll pick up soon…

Recently Finished – 9
I read Ida a couple of days ago. I wasn’t really sure what to expect with this but I did end up liking it.

This follows Ida as she gets lost in another dimension and has to find her way back home.

Ida (the book) is full of diversity which I really liked but I wasn’t really into the story I guess. I don’t know. I’ll hopefully figure it out by the time I review it. Which will be soon I hope. I think I gave this three stars on Goodreads. I just wish some things in the book were explained more….. But that’s all I’m going to say here.

I read Pieces of You by Eileen Merriman over the weekend. It’s a YA novel set in New DCZjHKyUQAAjwEcZealand so that’s awesome. I hardly ever read books set here.

I actually posted my review of Pieces of You yesterday so I really don’t feel like repeating myself in this post. If you want to read my review then click the link here.

I will say that it had some heavy topics in the book, like sexual assault and cutting, but I thought they were both handled well. But if you can’t read those topics then stay away.

Anyway, I think this is a contemporary? I’m not really sure.

Reading Next –
16I think it’s about time I finally picked up Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh. I loved her other books, The Wrath and the Dawn and The Rose and the Dagger. The world in those books was so addictive and magical. When I heard Ahdieh was writing another book I knew I had to read it. I didn’t even care what it was about.

But, it does sound good and has another strong female lead. I think. I haven’t read it yet. I really hope I can finish Defy the Stars soon and start this.

And, look at that cover! It’s gorgeous!!

So that’s my WWW Wednesday for another week. What have you been reading lately?

– Aimee.

Review: Pieces of You by Eileen Merriman.

Title – Pieces of You
Author – Eileen Merriman
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 333 pages
Publication Date – May 29, 2017 by Penguin New Zealand
ISBN – 9780143770473
My Rating – ★★★★/5

Rebecca has recently moved to a new city. Lonely and trying to make new friends, she decides to go to a party. And that’s where things start to fall apart.

Then Rebecca meets Cory and he helps her piece her life back together. Before he shatters it all over again…

I received a copy of Pieces of You from Penguin Random House New Zealand to review.

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I haven’t read many books set in New Zealand so when I saw Pieces of You  was by a New Zealand author and set here too I had to read it.

Pieces of You focuses on some heavy topics, like sexual assault and cutting. I thought the author handled both well. But I’ve never experienced either personally. I had friends who used to cut themselves in high school so I do understand some of the reasons behind it.

I found this book really addictive and I didn’t want to put it down. I’m not going to judge Rebecca for the choices she made because I’ve never been in the horrible situation she was in at the start of the book. But I will say that I don’t agree with her reasoning. I don’t want to give anything away so I’m not going to say anything else about it. Other than what she did at the end, I thought that was amazing.

I kind of thought there was something going on with Cory, with all the sick days he was having, like depression or something. But it wasn’t really mentioned. I really liked Rebecca and Cory together so what happened came as a complete shock. I’ve actually been thinking about it since I finished the book. Cory has stayed with me for a couple of days now.

I was confused why Rebecca thought that being from Dunedin was a bad thing? I don’t think Dunedin is hicksville but that’s how Rebecca put it in one sentence. I’ve never been but I know people who live there. Maybe it was just because Auckland is a city? I don’t know. But I wouldn’t say Dunedin was hicksville…

Anyway, I really enjoyed Pieces of You. It was so addictive and I also loved that I’d been reading about somewhere I’ve actually been to for a change. I’ll be keeping an eye out for other YA books by Eileen. Hopefully she’ll write more.

*Thank you Penguin Random House New Zealand for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review: A Million Worlds with You by Claudia Gray.

Title – A Million Worlds With You
Series – Firebird Trilogy #3
Author – Claudia Gray
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 432 pages
Publication Date – November 1st 2016 by HarperTeen
ISBN – 9780062562548
My Rating – ★★★★/5

The fate of the multiverse rests in Marguerite’s hands. She’s been at the center of a cross-dimensional feud from the first time she travelled to another universe. Now, Marguerite has learned Triad’s true plans and they could mean the end of hundreds of universes.

Paul has been at Marguerite’s side, but when Triad attacked him they changed him. Now, he’s angry and haunted by tragedy. Paul’s struggling to overcome the damage Triad did to him. And despite Marguerite’s efforts to help, Paul may never be the same again.

So it’s up to Marguerite to stop the destruction of the multiverse. Billions of lives are at stake and the risks have never been higher. Triad have unleashed their ultimate weapon – another Marguerite, evil, psychologically twisted and always one step ahead.

I received a copy of A Million Worlds with You from HarperCollins New Zealand toDAYmIy9V0AEZjq6 review. This is the last book in the Firebird trilogy.

I loved the first two books in this trilogy so I was looking forward to finding out how the story would end. Although at the same time I didn’t want it to end. When I first read A Thousand Pieces of You I was completely hooked within the first couple of chapters. I’d read books about time travel before, and I love books about time travel, but I don’t think I’d ever read anything about dimension travel before.

Marguerite goes on another trip through the dimensions in this book. But this time she’s not just trying to save the people she loves. I thought Triad, and what they were doing, was crazy. I mean, yes it’s sad when someone dies but this? Wow. I don’t even know what to say about what they were doing. The first two books had been building up to what Triad were doing and why they were so focused on their endgame.

I didn’t go into A Million Worlds with You with many expectations because I didn’t want to be disappointed. But, I did have one. Well, I didn’t expect it but I really wanted it to happen. I wanted Marguerite and Paul to end up together or in a better place than the were at the start of this book. I don’t believe in the whole destiny/fate thing that Marguerite and Paul did but I really liked them together.

I’ve loved every book in the Firebird trilogy. All three books were full of action, amazingly written worlds (I loved the Russiaverse) and just so addictive. I’ll definitely be reading more of Gray’s books.

*Thank you HarperCollins New Zealand for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review: Release by Patrick Ness.

Title – Release
Author – Patrick Ness
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 288 pages
Publication Date – May 4th 2017 by Walker Books
ISBN – 9781406331172
My Rating – ★★★/5

Today, everything in Adam’s life is going to fall apart. But he doesn’t know it yet. Relationships in his life will change. Adam will change. Maybe Adam will find freedom in the release.

Time is running out. Across town a ghost has risen from the lake and leaves a trail of destruction in her wake.

I received a copy of Release from Walker Books Australia to review. I haven’t read a lot of DAJcPvzUIAAL7ddbooks by Ness but I think the Chaos Walking trilogy is still my favourite.

I’m going to just say this now. I loved Adam and his friends. His story made me angry at time (which I’ll get into soon) and I enjoyed reading about him. But the ghost? I just don’t get it. I hoped it would make sense at the end of the book but I was just left confused. I guess I must have missed something… I just didn’t get why the ghosts story needed to be told? And it wasn’t just the ghost. The whole other story was confusing. But like I said, I liked Adam’s chapters.

So the part of Adam’s story that made me so angry was his family. They’re religious and I think they knew about Adam but they had this don’t ask/don’t tell policy that I thought was ridiculous. Like, if they didn’t say anything it would just go away and they could “pray away the gay.” What?! I cannot get my head around that. The worst part, as if all that wasn’t bad enough, was that Adam’s family had him thinking that the love he felt for a guy in his life was wrong and he didn’t deserve to be loved in return. What kind of family screws their kid up like that? I really don’t understand some people.

I would have liked to see what happened to Adam a couple of months after the ending of the book but I guess I’ll have to live with how the book ended. Which was weird because of the ghost.

I liked Release. It’s not my favourite of Ness’s books but I didn’t hate it. I was just really confused. But if you’re a fan of Ness then you should definitely check it out.

*Thank you Walker Books Australia for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

WWW Wednesday [June 14th 2017] –

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This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. All you have to do is answer the following three questions in a post and then put a link to that post in the Comments over at Taking on a World of Words.

The questions are:
1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading –
DCAdcxrUwAA6CCDI’m not reading anything at the moment. I’ve been sick since the end of last week and I am just so tired and my eyes hurt so I’m not going to pick anything up today. I need a break for now. I know being sick seems like the best time to do nothing and read but not this time.

So I’m just going to leave a shelfie here because I don’t have a book to post. I bought a third bookcase last week and it was put up over the weekend. This isn’t the best photo because not every shelf fits in an instagram photo but oh well. You get the idea. But I am so happy that I have room for more books!!!

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Recently Finished –
I finished The Names They Gave Us yesterday and I enjoyed this more than I thought I would.

This book follows Lucy as she comes to terms with her mother’s cancer coming back, being a camp counselor at a “hippie camp” across the lake from her parents’ camp, where she planned to spend the summer. At Daybreak, Lucy meets Jones, a charming and mysterious boy.

So I thought this would be the usual girl meets boy, boy helps girl or changes her life. And yes, Jones did open Lucy’s eyes but there was so much more to the story than the connection between Lucy and Jones. I’ll be talking 2about it more in my review.

I also finished The Cows, which was so good! It’s not YA but I really enjoyed this.

The Cows follows three women, all strangers, who are come into each others lives in the most random and kind of horrible ways. But for some it changes their lives for the better. I don’t want to say too much about this because I will be reviewing it soon but I really, really enjoyed this book. It was a little weird in parts but you’ll have to read it to find out why…

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Reading Next –
I’ve decided I’ll be reading Ida next. I can’t really remember what this is about but I think it has an LGBT+ character. Or more than one? I’m not sure. I guess I’ll find out when I feel like reading again. Hopefully it’ll be soon because my TBR is crazy long.

So that’s my WWW Wednesday for this week. Fingers crossed I feel better by next week. I’m off to watch some Teen Mom now.

Let me know what you’ve been reading lately in the comments.

– Aimee.