YALLWEST //still feels like a dream
I WENT TO YALLWEST. I want to share my experience with yall (see what I did there) as this was my FIRST bookish event and it was magnificent.
First of all I have to say I only spared enough time to head out for an hour or two so I wasn't actually able to attend signings or panels, but I still had a blast! I actually headed to Yallwest with my dad (who helped me score a couple more items than I would have alone). Essentially my yallwest experience was simply trying to get free things whooo! Here is my oh so amazing haul from simply 2 hours worth of yallwest!
The Whole Thing Together by Ann Brashares
*I received an ARC of The Whole Thing Together from Delacorte Press through Netgalley, but this in no way affected my honest opinion about the book.*
Synopsis: "Summer for Sasha and Ray means the sprawling old house on Long Island. Since they were children, they’ve shared almost everything—reading the same books, running down the same sandy footpaths to the beach, eating peaches from the same market, laughing around the same sun-soaked dining table. Even sleeping in the same bed, on the very same worn cotton sheets. But they’ve never met.
Sasha’s dad was once married to Ray’s mom, and together they had three daughters: Emma, the perfectionist; Mattie, the beauty; and Quinn, the favorite. But the marriage crumbled and the bitterness lingered. Now there are two new families—and neither one will give up the beach house that holds the memories, happy and sad, of summers past.
The choices we make come back to haunt us; the effect on our destinies ripples out of our control…or does it? This summer, the lives of Sasha, Ray, and their siblings intersect in ways none of them ever dreamed, in a novel about family relationships, keeping secrets, and most of all, love. "
Review: There were things I enjoyed about this book, but there were also a few flaws that caught my attention. However I have to say I was hoping for something that I would love as much at The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, and unfortunately I don't think this novel was as strong.
I was intrigued by the families and how they got around each other. Ray acted like an average guy, but at times it was just inappropriate? Ray and Sasha may not be related and at time they were definitely cute, but other times it felt somewhat incestuous?? I actually supported them for the majority of the time, until the end of the book where there relationship, family-wise, was much too close for them to like each other anymore.
This novel was definitely an intriguing read that I'm glad I picked up to experience its interesting setting. Although it was not the ultimate novel and it can be slightly unfair to compare this back to the classic The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, it did fall a bit short of my expectations, though I would still recommend others to give this book a try!
Favorite Quote(s): " It was a familiar weakness, not wanting the people she loved to want things too badly."
Ivory and Bone by Julie Eshbaugh
Synopsis: "A prehistoric fantasy—with allusions to Pride and Prejudice.
Hunting, gathering, and keeping his family safe—that’s the life seventeen-year-old Kol knows. Then bold, enigmatic Mya arrives from the south with her family, and Kol is captivated. He wants her to like and trust him, but any hopes of impressing her are ruined when he makes a careless—and nearly grave—mistake. However, there’s something more to Mya’s cool disdain…a history wrought with loss that comes to light when another clan arrives. With them is Lo, an enemy from Mya’s past who Mya swears has ulterior motives.
As Kol gets to know Lo, tensions between Mya and Lo escalate until violence erupts. Faced with shattering losses, Kol is forced to question every person he’s trusted. One thing is for sure: this was a war that Mya or Lo—Kol doesn’t know which—had been planning all along."
Review: This book was not what I expected. I went into this novel only knowing that it was a historical fiction that took place during the Ice Age. Although there were some parts that threw me off, I still found the book to be a success!
First off you may need to know that I'm not much of a history geek and every time I pick up a historical fiction I'm scared that it will be too historical. This is why when I found this novel to mainly focus on romance, I was pretty pleased. Although if you aren't much into romance or having a novel REALLY focus on romance... you may not want to pick this up because it really is 90% romance. However, the book makes up for it in other ways! (and in my case just adds on to its pros in more ways).
Ivory and Bone has amazing action alongside its romance. The perspective of the character telling the story may have a focus on romance, but the plot itself is FULL of action and multiple twists. After all, mammoths, treacherous waters, and neighboring tribes are not to be taken lightly! Although I loved nosying around in the love life of Kol, the crazy events that happen in this novel really seem like enough for me to enjoy this book!
I enjoyed this novel, but the one thing I would have to mention is that the book is written in second person. Although this is unique and interesting, as a reader, I found it hard for the first couple of chapters to get the flow going and I each "you" made my brain pause for a moment before I could continue reading. Otherwise, this book was full of great ideas and I really have to praise its unique environment and the romantic yet action-filled plot that goes along with it. There was also absolutely beautiful writing which definitely helped with the second person style.
After finishing this book I read the synopsis (lol yea sort of backwards..) and found that it had allusions to Pride and Prejudice, which is strikingly obvious now that I look back. I think I didn't realize mostly because of the fact that in this case there were some twists like how the boys were in search of marriage and twists like that. Now that I look back I have to admire this book even more for these allusions and it definitely makes me look at this novel in a whole new perspective!
Favorite Quote(s): "A void opens up in this room -- opens up in my chest -- from the lack of you."
"you die the way you live"
Amy & Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
Synopsis:"Amy Curry is not looking forward to her summer. Her mother decided to move across the country and now it's Amy's responsibility to get their car from California to Connecticut. The only problem is, since her father died in a car accident, she isn't ready to get behind the wheel. Enter Roger. An old family friend, he also has to make the cross-country trip - and has plenty of baggage of his own. The road home may be unfamiliar - especially with their friendship venturing into uncharted territory - but together, Amy and Roger will figure out how to map their way."
Review: Morgan Matson is brilliant! I knew as soon as I finished Since You've Been Gone that I would love everything and anything she wrote, (spoiler alert I was right). Amy & Roger's is such a classic yet unique young adult contemporary novel and I love it!.
Amy has a complicated past and I loved how Morgan Matson slowly reveals in in pieces as Amy accepts her past throughout the trip. Amy learns more about herself and deals with her path as the trip progresses and as the reader her past also becomes clearer. As Amy becomes more and more ready to show who she is the novel reflects that with more pieces of her past. This element was probably my favorite and it definitely built this suspense around Amy's past and what she had to learn to deal with.
One thing I really loved about this book was that Amy and Charlie weren't that close. I have a twin sister and we aren't the kind of twins you'd usually read about where we do everything together and stuff like that so I loved that this novel showed a difference. Although we aren't as seperate as Amy and Charlie the inclusion of this separation was really realistic and I brought more depth behind the characters.
Although I loved this book there was one thing that I didn't particularly feel was right. The romance. This is such a strange thing for me because I pretty much enjoy all romance even the cliche ones, but the romance and the relationship between Amy and Rodger felt impossible especially since they had only met each other for a week. Though I was glad that the ending was somewhat more realistic to the situation.
Overall, Morgan Matson did a brilliant job and this classic YA contemporary novel is a great, quick read for all!
Favorite Quote(s): "It shouldn't have come as a surprise. I'd found that if you pushed people away hard enough, they tended to go."
"And really, it's not about the destination. It's getting there that's the good part."
"Wandering is encouraged."
A fan of anything fiction, furry, & fun.