YA TROPES THAT NEED TO STOP

YA is the best thing to come out of a printing press since Martin Luther's Ninety-Five Theses. Although I love YA, I have many grievances towards it, just like how Martin Luther disagreed with the church. Though, I don't think I'll be able to come up with 95 grievances, end simony, start a reformation and spark a counter reformation. I apologize for the mini history lesson.

I compiled this list with a group of my book loving/reading friends.

HAMILTON OBSESSION

Broadway has long been written off by most as a pretentious form of storytelling, accessible only by the wealthy elite, and for the most part, dry. This may be a case of sour grapes, but it's true nonetheless. Hamilton, written by Lin Manuel Miranda, is the exception.
Let's start with the music! It is a diverse group of songs; many of them are jazzy and fun to sing along to, some are tearful ballads, and others are groundbreaking raps. There's a narrative to them, yes, but you don't necessarily have to know every aspect of the story in order to enjoy the lyrics, the melodies and the amazing instruments involved. My personal favorite is The Room Where It Happens.

It's crazy expensive to see it on Broadway, but it's just as enjoyable blasting through headphones.

LOOKING FOR A CO-BLOGGER

Hi everyone! I'm rarely blogging these days and there's been 0 growth/progress with this blog. I would love to have a partner(s) to blog with. If you're interested, please fill the form out. Thank you so much! I can't wait to read the responses.

WORDPRESS VS. BLOGGER

A domain host is very important. It doesn't seem important to non-bloggers, but it really is. Blogger, obviously, is where I blog and review books. I just started using Wordpress because my class deciding to do this project/charity where we raise money for baby elephants in Africa (David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust). I was in charge of all things social media and the website because of my blogging credentials/experience and whatnot.

Disclaimer: I'm a little biased because of my experience and time with Blogger.

Without further ado, here is my analysis on the two domain hosts:

ARISTOTLE AND DANTE REVIEW | MY GAY CHILDREN



Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Simon & Schuster | February 21, 2012
        Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be. 

THE PROBLEM WITH FOREVER



The Problem with Forever
by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Harlequin Teen | May 17, 2016
       For some people, silence is a weapon. For Mallory “Mouse” Dodge, it’s a shield. Growing up, she learned that the best way to survive was to say nothing. And even though it’s been four years since her nightmare ended, she’s beginning to worry that the fear that holds her back will last a lifetime.
       Now, after years of homeschooling with loving adoptive parents, Mallory must face a new milestone—spending her senior year at public high school. But of all the terrifying and exhilarating scenarios she’s imagined, there’s one she never dreamed of—that she’d run into Rider Stark, the friend and protector she hasn’t seen since childhood, on her very first day.
       It doesn’t take long for Mallory to realize that the connection she shared with Rider never really faded. Yet the deeper their bond grows, the more it becomes apparent that she’s not the only one grappling with the lingering scars from the past. And as she watches Rider’s life spiral out of control, Mallory faces a choice between staying silent and speaking out—for the people she loves, the life she wants, and the truths that need to be heard.

GIRL IN SHADOWS | NOT SO MAGICAL



Girl in the Shadows (Girl on a Wire #2)
by Gwenda Bond
Skyscape | July 5, 2016
eARC courtesy of NetGalley
Status: DNF
       Eighteen-year-old Moira Mitchell grew up in the shadows of Vegas' stage lights while her father’s career as a magician soared. More than anything, Moira wants to be a magician too, but her father is dead set against her pursuing magic.
       When an invitation to join the Cirque American mistakenly falls into Moira’s possession, she takes action. Instead of giving the highly coveted invitation to its intended recipient, Raleigh, her father’s handsome and worldly former apprentice, Moira takes off to join the Cirque. If she can perform alongside its world-famous acts, she knows she’ll be able to convince her dad that magic is her future.
       But when Moira arrives, things take on an intensity she can’t control as her stage magic suddenly feels like…real magic. To further distract her, Raleigh shows up none too pleased at Moira’s presence, all while the Cirque’s cocky and intriguing knife thrower, Dez, seems to have it out for her. As tensions mount and Moira’s abilities come into question, she must decide what’s real and what’s an illusion. If she doesn’t sort it out in time, she may forever remain a girl in the shadows.

NEW CO-BLOGGER! | THE LEONARDO DICAPRIO OF NOVELS



Beauty Queens
by Libba Bray
Scholastic Press | May 24, 2011
       When a plane crash strands thirteen teen beauty contestants on a mysterious island, they struggle to survive, to get along with one another, to combat the island's other diabolical occupants, and to learn their dance numbers in case they are rescued in time for the competition. The result is a novel that will make you laugh, make you think, and make you never see beauty the same way again.
Teen beauty queens. A lost island. Mysteries and dangers. No access to email. And the spirit of fierce, feral competition that lives deep in the heart of every girl, a savage brutality that can only be revealed by a journey into the heart of non-exfoliated darkness. Oh, the horror, the horror! Only funnier. With evening gowns. And a body count.

THIS LLAMA DOESN'T NEED THIS BOOK'S DRAMA



Because I Love You
by Tori Rigby
Blaze Publishing LLC | May 17, 2016
eARC courtesy of publisher
         Eight weeks after sixteen-year-old Andie Hamilton gives her virginity to her best friend, the stick says she’s pregnant. 
         Her friends treat her like she’s carrying the plague, her classmates torture and ridicule her, and the boy she thought loved her doesn’t even care. Afraid to experience the next seven months alone, she turns to her ex-boyfriend, Neil Donaghue, a dark-haired, blue-eyed player. With him, she finds comfort and the support she desperately needs to make the hardest decision of her life: whether or not to keep the baby.
         Then a tragic accident leads Andie to discover Neil’s keeping a secret that could dramatically alter their lives, and she's forced to make a choice. But after hearing her son’s heartbeat for the first time, she doesn’t know how she’ll ever be able to let go.
If you're expecting this book to be funny and witty like Juno, you're going to be disappointed. The book isn't bad per se, but it wasn't spectacular. I loved reading Neil's dialogue and his interactions with Andie because it was a really nice break from reading Andie's drama. He was so levelheaded and he anchored Andie. But, he's a guy and Andie had to rely on him. I found this slightly archaic because the man was the money-maker in the relationship and "without him, the woman is nothing." He's also flawless like every other love interest. There's literally nothing wrong with him, at all! He has a dark past, but that isn't really flaw.

Back to Andie's drama. Andie had too many things happening to her and I couldn't take any more of it. It was over the top drama and the excess... The way she copes with it was illogical to me and eye role inducing. I also didn't find Andie relatable whatsoever. It's not because she's pregnant. It's because of her high school life/her personality. Her high school life seemed too Mean Girls. It's also slightly "outdated", irrelevant and somewhat staged. It doesn't seem very current/now.

I think, most, people are open minded and accepting these days. Instead of criticizing and ostracizing someone for their "mistake(s)", people help each other. High School in this book is very similar to the way Hollywood portrays it. She overreacts very often and says some stuff I don't agree with. As you can conclude, I had an aversion towards her inner dialogue. If you want to read more about what I'm talking about, click read more.

The author writes about something so important, but I don't think it was done as well as it could've been. It has a great plot/story and the writing is similar to JLA's because the characters had a sassy, playful banter. It just needs tweaking in the character, romance, and dialogue department. Make it more realistic with a lot less drama. Instead of your love interest helping you, have your new best friend (Jill. I'm biased because I love her character) help you. It becomes a beautiful story about friendship. Not all love is a boy-girl/girl-girl/boy-boy relationship. It can be family and/or friends.

A girl ending a boy's womanizing ways is a horrendous YA trope. Please get rid of it. There are so many opportunities to make this book different and stand out. It's really cliché.

CUTE, BUT THAT'S ALL



Love Charms and Other Catastrophes (Grimbaud #2)
by Kimberly Karalius
Swoon Reads | May 17th, 2016
ARC Courtesy of Goodreads
         Aspiring love charm maker Hijiri Kitamura was excited to come back to Grimbaud for her sophomore year-until she learns about the upcoming charm making competition. Grimbaud has just started to recover from the tyranny of Zita's love fortunes and it would be too easy for the winning charm maker to take Zita's place. The only solution is for Hijiri, with the support of her friends and fellow rebels, to win the contest herself.
         Unfortunately, that's easier said than done, especially when Love itself has decided to meddle in Hijiri's life. Concerned that it's favorite charm maker has given up on finding a boyfriend of her own, Love takes matters into its own hands and delivers the perfect boyfriend to her in a giftwrapped box...literally.

GAME OF THRONES

I started watching this show because I was really bored during spring break. Now you're wondering, why don't you read books then? Well, I don't feel like reading. I don't have the patience, nor the energy to be engrossed in a book because of my book slump. I just read some kickass NA Mysteries/Thrillers! So, I turned to the debauchery in Game of Thrones for entertainment.