The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
I’m not entirely sure what I thought of this book. I liked the idea of it, of bringing two people together over the course of a single day and entwining their lives in these fragile little coincidences. And I loved that the two characters had very unique and different Immigrant American experiences. Despite the condensed timeline, they still had depth. However, there were some “cheesy” moments that I thought took away from it. Like sometimes Daniel was a little too all in on the “love at first sight” and “magic of the universe” stuff. It just made him seem immature for someone who was supposedly Yale-bound. And at times Natasha was a bit insufferable, but that’s maybe to be expected for a teenager. I will say that I appreciated Yoon’s writing and take a moment to recommend her other book, Everything Everything, which I read last year and really enjoyed.
Rookie Move, Hard Hitter, and Pipe Dreams by Sarina Bowen
It’s Valentine’s month and I’m alone. So I marathon read some romance books, ok? There is a time and a place for every book and sometimes a girl just really needs a happy ending or something that makes her laugh. These particular books follow different players on a hockey team: the forward, the captain, and the goalie. They’re not perfect books, but very good for contemporary romance that doesn’t make you want to chuck them through the wall for any sickly sweetness. Which is my sole criteria for picking out romance books, if I’m totally honest. I have to have a small dose of reality mixed in with my romance or I just can’t suspend my disbelief long enough to finish the book.
We’re Going to Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union
I’ve read a bunch of celebrity books in the last few years. Sometimes they’re funny and light hearted, sometimes they’re insightful, and sometimes you get hit over the head with reality. While this book provides a very healthy dose of humor and insight, it’s rooted in the realities of being a black woman in America. And I really enjoyed this because I think Union was able to shed light on her experience in all its phases: as a child growing up in an all white California community, as a teenager who spent summers in a predominately black part of Nebraska while crack started hitting the streets, and as an adult trying to navigate Hollywood and marriage and motherhood. I really appreciated what she had to say and I loved the Audiobook. Well worth a listen.
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
I read this book for the first time a little over a year ago in August of 2016. And then there was a wait before the next book was published and I got distracted by other things and then before I knew it I had lost too many of the details to dive right into A Court of Wings and Ruin. So I went back for a re-read and I don’t regret it at all. “I am an absolute mess of feelings,” I wrote in 2016 and that sentiment still rings true. Maas has brilliantly reworked the story of Hades and Persephone into a masterpiece with so much plot and intrigue that I could barely put it down to watch the Olympics primetime coverage. Start with the first book, A Court of Thorns and Roses, but definitely get into this series. Especially if you like Anne Bishop’s Black Jewels books because it has some of that same intensity and passion.
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
There’s a point in this book where one of the characters says to Simon, “You write like you talk.” And that’s a pretty good way to describe the writing style of this book; it has the tone of a teenage boy spilling his secrets. I liked Simon a lot. I thought he was genuine and funny and energetic and he has such a wonderful collection of friends and family. And it’s because of this collection of characters that I had a difficult time believing Simon was able to keep his secret. So while I liked this book, I also found it a bit naive at times. I’m excited to see the movie though. Without Simon’s constant internal stream of conscious, that disbelief may not be as prevalent a problem.