Featured post

BLOG TOUR: A Thousand Minutes To Sunlight by Jen White

Review of A Thousand Minutes To Sunlight by Jen White

Name: A Thousand Minutes To Sunlight

Author: Jen White

Genre:Middle Grade, Mental Health, Contemporary

Rating: 4.2/5

Publisher : Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Publication date: April 20th 2021

ISBN-10 : 0374300860

ISBN-13 : 978-0374300869

Synopsis:

Jen White’s A Thousand Minutes to Sunlight is a sensitively-written middle grade novel about a girl struggling with anxiety, family secrets, and the meaning of friendship.

Cora is constantly counting the minutes. It’s the only thing that stops her brain from rattling with worry, from convincing her that danger is up ahead. Afraid of the unknown, Cora spends her days with her feet tucked into sand, marveling at La Quinta beach’s giant waves and her little sister Sunshine’s boundless energy.

And then danger really does show up at Cora’s doorstep–her absentee uncle, whose sudden presence in the middle of the night makes her parents nervous and secretive. As dawn breaks once more, Cora must piece together her family and herself, one minute at a time.

A Thousand Minutes to Sunlight is an endearing and revelatory middle-grade novel that is perfect for fans of Counting by 7s and Fish in a Tree.

Review:
A Thousand Minutes to Sunlight gives a new perspective to family mental health issues. It talks about a teenage girl with anxiety and panic disorders.

Jen White’s writing is really fluid and expressive. I really enjoyed how the author has wonderfully portrayed Cora’s character, her mindset, her personality and her thoughts. Cora is indeed a complex character in this story, her thoughts keep contradicting with each other and how she tries to be a child yet an adult at the same time. The conflict between her thoughts, her expressions, the stream of consciousness in the writing, the depth of the characters, and the flow of thoughts are portrayed perfectly.


I liked the writing style alot, it is a bit perplexing but the way the author has personified her inner thoughts and alternatively split the writing between her concious thoughts and unconscious mind aka “Brain”.
A Thousand Minutes To Sunlight by Jen White is an enjoyable read that surrounds mental health problems, friends and family. It will be enjoyed by teens as well as adults. I would give it a 4.2/5 stars because the conscious writing style sounds amazing at first, but gets a bit annoying to read in the middle.

Participate in Giveaway:

Want to grab a copy of this book? Win a chance to get a free paperback copy of A Thousand Minutes to Sunlight by Jen White in an International Giveaway by XpressBookTours. Participate before this ends on April 29th.

Purchase Links:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3gcvXnt

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-thousand-minutes-to-sunlight-jen-white/1136619248?ean=9780374300869

iBooks: https://books.apple.com/ca/book/a-thousand-minutes-to-sunlight/id1509037801?mt=11&id=1509037801&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/a-thousand-minutes-to-sunlight

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=1sXdDwAAQBAJ

About The Author:

Jen White writes middle grade fiction. Her second book, A THOUSAND MINUTES TO SUNLIGHT, releases on 4.20.21. Her debut, SURVIVAL STRATEGIES OF THE ALMOST BRAVE, has been translated into several languages. She grew up in Southern California and currently resides there with her family. Jen received her bachelor of art’s degree in English and her master’s degree from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults. You can find out more at www.jenwhitebooks.com.

Review of Beautiful Façade by Kathryn S. Rose

Name: Beautiful Façade

Author: Kathryn S. Rose

Genre: Drama, Romance, Mental Heath, Contemporary

Rating: 3.5/4

Review:

Beautiful Façade is a vulnerable calling-out song for all the ladies out there, who keep living under a beautiful façade of perfection. it encourages us to be more of ourselves than to be anything else. Enticed with a troubling past and mental health problems, this book is a beautiful tribute to all the women, telling them to love themselves more.

The protagonist, Winter Starling seems to be living a perfect, successful businesswoman, fiancée of a popular soccer player. Winter has it all, a beautiful home, success, love! But her ideal life starts falling apart when she reunites with her first love, Kai.

Reuniting with Kai brings back old memories, memories she would rather forget. Winter delves into her troubled past, suffering from insomnia. Kai seems to be the problem and the solution to all her problems at the same time. Especially when she is still attracted to her childhood sweetheart, Will Kai’s return bring back old scars or heal them all the way?

The writing style is fluent, lyrical, and wonderful. The story is heart-touching, especially the way the protagonist has developed in the story. I find the protagonist to be relatable, though I felt she is really annoying at times. She is so confused throughout the story, her character development was better. The writing itself is good, enjoyable and engrossing.

Review of House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland

//~She was fourteen then, and already the most beautiful creature I could imagine. I wanted to peel the skin from her body and wear it draped over mine.///

Name: House of Hollow
Author: Krystal Sutherland
Genre: Paranormal, Mystery, Drama, Thriller, Family
Rating: 3.7/5
(Trigger: Self-harm, sexual assault, death, murder)

Review:
House of Hollow is a bizarre, surprising and dark modern fairytale which surrounds the three Hollow sisters, their mysterious disappearance years ago and a terrible secret which haunts them.


Seventeen year old Iris Hollow has been trying her best to fit in her school, but her eerie past and the strange rumors makes her stand out even more. But everything changes when her older sister, Grey is found missing. Iris must do anything and everything to find her sister, even if it means to seek out her dark past and to find out that everything she has ever known was a lie and the truth maybe darker and more horrifying than she could ever imagine.


The first thing that I really liked about this book was the beautiful cover of this book. I loved the writing style of this book, the writing is intricate, lyrical and intriguing. The author has done an amazing job in portraying the characters, her relationships and her emotions with such eloquence. I appreciate how the author tried to make the characters diverse, especially the sexual diversity of the Hollow sisters. The plot was enjoyable, gripping, surprising and a little creepy. I enjoyed how the plot took place, especially the plot twists in the end.


The characters are well developed, and each character was unique with their own backstory. Though I was not really fond of the protagonist, I liked Vivi more and wished to have more part with Vivi. The protagonist’s relationship with her sisters and her mother has been vividly narrated. It’s hard to categorise this book into a particular genre, it is a mix-up of various genres and themes.
Overall, this is an enticing and perplexing story which will be enjoyed by readers of YA, Horror, Paranormal, Mystery.

Review of The Dream Voyagers by David Lyons

Name: The Dream Voyagers
Author: David Lyons
Genre: Adventure, Drama, Time Travel, Fantasy, Action, Romance
Rating: 4.4/5

“These dreams we dream are mostly lost to our memory; small fragments remain to tantalize us in the daylight hours, and rekindle a glimpse of what was, or what might have been.”

David L. Lyons

Review:
The Dream Voyagers is a time-traveling adventure fantasy fiction that revolves around the Rainbow twins, Elissia and Tom striving to fight against the underworld and save humanity.


In the 16th century, Elissia lives in a castle built over the Gates of the Underworld. Her family has to protect the key and protect the gate from opening. In present times, the Rainbow Twins lives with their next-door neighbor, Tom Muldoon. Tom finds a rare artifact, the Key, which will change his life forever. Moreover here comes a mysterious lady, Anne-Marie. The lives of Tom, The Rainbow Twins, and Elissia entangled with this mysterious artifact.


Will, they will be able to protect Elissia and stop the Gates of Underworld from opening? Will they be able to save humanity?
I haven’t read any time-travel novels, though I have watched a lot of time-travel movies, dramas, and animes. The Dream Voyagers is an engaging and captivating novel. I enjoyed reading this novel with its amazing world-building and surprising characters. The storyline is promising, though the narrative can be a bit confusing. If you like reading about time travel, dreams, fantasy, and romance, this is the one for you!!

Review of Letters to Jupiter by Lotte Jean

Name: Letters to Jupiter

Author: Lotte Jean

Genre: Poetry & Prose

Rating: 4.8/5

Review:

Letters to Jupiter by Lotte Jean is a beautiful collection of poetry and prose which transverse through various topics and themes. The poetries are written in free verse and are delightful, touching and exquisite. The way the poetess expresses poetry itself is intriguing.

Her writing style is different from the poetries I am used to. The topics that the poetess delve into include love, loss, pain, suffering and inner demons. I enjoyed reading “Born to Die Tonight”, “Dear” and “In Darkness, We Begin”.

In the other half of the book, her poetry takes a darker and somber feel. I loved the latter part a lot more than the first half. Some of my favorites are “Knife Art Show”, “Understand Hell”, “Seven Breaths”, “Do You Hear My Soul Burning”, and “The Past Comes Back”. These poetries take on a darker thrilling aura and totally enchants me with its beauty.

Letters to Jupiter is a kind of poetry you come back to time after time and admire the poet’s ingenuity. Lotte Jean is one of the hidden gems who will enthrall the world with her poetry.

Review of Written in Starlight by Isabel Ibanez

Name: Written in Starlight
Author: Isabel Ibanez
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Adventure, Drama, Magic
Rating: 3.5/5


Review:
Written in Starlight is story of a girl rediscovering herself after losing everything. It talks about seeing the bigger truth when one loses the sense of oneself.


The fallen Condesa, Catalina has lost everything, the war, her people, her throne, and her best friend. Now, she is left with two options, either accept Princess Tamaya as her queen or be banished in the jungle. Catalina knows that she hardly has any chance of surviving in the dangers of the jungle, but when a farmer’s son, Manuel saves her. She thinks that she may have a chance. She ventures to find the lost city of gold and ask their support in her effort to reclaim her throne. Will she be able to survive the dangers? Will she be able to reclaim her throne?

This is a perfect companion to Woven in Moonlight. Isabel Ibanez returns with her mesmerizing storytelling, this time full of adventures, drama and actions. This book takes us on a journey through the dangers of the jungle, from the clasps of lurking animals into the arms of a handsome guard. The writing style is really good. Though, it is a sequel to Woven in Moonlight, this book gives a very different perspective from the former.

The character of Catalina was really unbearable at some points through the story. Even though, Manuel is doing his best to protect her, she is upset because he is not giving her attention. She seems really selfish as well. But I was glad to see some character development in her. The ending was totally unexpected. The chemistry between Catalina and Manuel was really good. The character of Manuel reminded me of Dimitri Belikov from Vampire Academy, in that sense, I can say Catalina did resemble Rose Hathaway as well.

This book is a must read, if you liked Woven In Moonlight. This book is aimed for the fans of fantasy, romance and adventure.

Review of Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

“You don’t forget the face of the person who was your last hope.”

Name: Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
Genre: YA, Dystopian, Adventure, Drama, Action, Thriller, Apocalyptic
Rating: 4.1/5

Review:
“MAY THE ODDS BE EVER IN YOUR FAVOUR”
Set in a dystopian world of Panem (post apocalyptic North America), where twelve districts surround the Capitol.

Every year, a deadly tournament called Hunger Games are held, where two representative from each district fight each other till death. The winning district gets privileges and resources from the Capitol.

In District 12, sixteen year old Katniss Everdeen is the only one to look after her family. She volunteers for the Hunger Games, when her younger sister, Primrose is chosen as the female tribute from District 12 for the tournament.

Katniss knows that she cannot die, that she has to come back for her sister. Fighting for survival has become a second nature for Katniss since her father’s death. She is moved to the Capitol with Peeta Mellark, the male tribute from District 12.Will the odds be ever in Katniss’ favour? She joins with Peeta and Haymitch, a previous victor from District 12. What will happen to Katniss?

It is one of my favourite post-apocalyptic novels in the YA genre. I really like the character of Peeta Mellark. The personality of Katniss is relatable, she sacrifices a lot for her sister. The ending was absolutely fascinating. It is one of the must read books at least once in a lifetime. I must say I really enjoyed the movie adaptation of this book as well.

Further Reading:
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore

Review of Between Wild And Ruin

Name: Between Wild & Ruin

Author: Jennifer G. Edelson

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Rating: 3/5

Review:

Between Wild & Ruin is a surprisingly intriguing story that brings out the curiosity of the readers in this enigmatic world of folklore, superstitions, and suspense.

After the untimely death of her mother, Ruby Brooks moves to the small town of La Luna of New Mexico. Filled with the history of wars, lore, and ruins, this town marks a new beginning for Ruby. Since her arrival, she receives a warm welcome from the people and gains the attention of three good-looking guys, Angel, a cop who fell for Ruby, at first sight, Ezra, a rude jerk with a mysterious past, and Leo, a guy who only appears around the ruins. Ruby finds herself drawn by these boys, folklores, and ruins, which calls for her.

At first, this book reminded me a lot of Twilight and Outlander, but later I realized how wrong I was. Jennifer G. Edelson definitely has amazing world-building and writing skills. I enjoyed the writing style, it is engaging and absorbing. The story is very descriptive and vividly drawn together.

At some point, I started feeling that most of the characters in this story are vague. During the first 200 pages, nothing happens. The story catches pace after that, so one needs to be patient through these 200 or so pages. I felt that the first half of this book has been too stretched, it could have been shortened. I felt most of the characters are okay, I liked Ezra’s character the most (though I am not sure why!). Three guys were attracted to Ruby as soon as she moves into the town, I find that really unbelievable.

This is an interesting story that will be enjoyed by those who like reading YA Fantasy/Paranormal romance, but they need to have a lot of patience while reading this story. I am giving this book 3/5 because of the points I mentioned above.

Review of Chain of Gold By Cassandra Clare

//~There is no better distraction in this world than losing oneself in books for awhile.///

Name: Chain of Gold

Author: Cassandra Clare

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Adventure, Drama, Romance

Rating: 4.1/5

Review:

Chain of Gold is a fast-paced gripping YA novel about romance, drama and adventure.

The story is set in 1903’s London, it starts with the arrival of Carstairs family in London. Cordelia Carstairs has spent her whole life traveling around the world along with her family. In London, she wants to socialize and find friends, but when her father is being tried by the Clave, she needs help and support for her father’s case. She reunites with her friends, Lucie Herondale and her brother, James.

But everything changes when a sudden demon attack terrorise London, and it has spread a plague among shadowhunters. Cordelia, Lucie, James and his parabatai, Matthew Fairchild have to discover the origin of this attack. Especially when it could lead James to his ancestors, to his grandfather, to the Prince of Hell! What would Cordelia do to protect the ones she loves?

Cassandra Clare has blown mind away. This book is perfect combination of classic romance and YA fantasy. The characters are so well developed and diverse, I love it how Clare creates a story so inclusive and unique. The story is strong and plot driven. The plot is grilling and immersing, it is full of action and romance. I liked the chemistry between Cordelia and Matthew much more than Cordelia and James.

If you are already familiar with Shadowhunters Universe, you will find some familiar characters as well. It was nice to see Magnus Name once again in this story, can’t help but secretly hoping to see romance between Matthew and Magnus. It is a pretty good read, which will be enjoyed by lovers of YA fantasy as well as YA romance.

Kingdom of Back

//~All men are villains’. He was afraid, I realized, and I wonder now if it was because his proclamation made him a villain too…///

Name: Kingdom of Back
Author: Marie Lu
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Teens & YA, Fantasy, Magic, Music, Women
Rating:4.4/5

Review:
Kingdom of Back is a story of girl, who is scared to be forgotten. She makes a wish to be remembered, and her wish is heard. To be remembered in her own world, she creates another world, where there are two moons and the trees grow upside down.

Marianne “Nannerl” Mozart is the unknown sister of prodigy musician, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and this is her story. Nannerl is a child prodigy, born with a talent for music. Under the supervision and guide of her father, Leopold, she practices to play clavier every day. Her only wish is to be remembered for her music.

Nannerl is very close to her beloved brother, Woferl. They play together, they practice together. She teaches him how to play clavier. And at night, they let their imagination run wild and weaves story to tell each other. But as her younger brother shows talent for music. Her father draws his attention in teaching Woferl. She feels overshadowed by her brother, to be forgotten as an unknown sister of a child prodigy.

Hyacinth, a princeling from another world, visit her in her dreams and promises to help her wish come true, if only she agrees to help him reclaim his throne in the Kingdom of Back. Will Marianne’s wish come true or will she be forgotten along with countless talented women of past? Is Hyacinth really Marianne’s guardian or is he a devil hiding behind a mask?

The way the protagonist was portrayed throughout the story was so natural and relatable. Being second to her father’s priorities, broken dreams and expectations and her anger and frustrations, the author has totally slayed it, expressing Nannerl’s torn between her own dreams and passion and her father’s expectations and betrayal. This book reminds me of Virginia Woolf’s “Room of one’s own”, where she writes about the unknown sister of William Shakespeare, who was as talented as the Bard but she remained forgotten in the history because of her gender.

Marie Lu weaves a story from the life of a person who was forgotten by the people, who was left unmentioned in the history, while her brother remained immortal through his work. This book leaves us with a tinge of sadness and anger and with loads of questions which starts with ‘ifs’ and the answer to all those questions would have been yes. The writing style is appealing and relatable. This book is written for all those people, who are unable to pursue their passion because of their race, caste, religion, gender stereotypes, family’s expectations, bias, socioeconomic conditions, etc.