Publisher: Balzer & Bray


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Review: The Mystery of Hollow Places by Rebecca Podos

Posted by 2 Comments

Review: The Mystery of Hollow Places by Rebecca Podos
The Mystery of Hollow Places
Rebecca Podos
Genre: Contemporary, YA
Publication date: January 26th, 2016
by Balzer & Bray

GoodreadsPurchase
All Imogene Scott knows of her mother is the bedtime story her father told her as a child. It's the story of how her parents met: he, a forensic pathologist, she, a mysterious woman who came to identify a body. A woman who left Imogene and her father when she was a baby, a woman who was always possessed by a powerful loneliness, a woman who many referred to as troubled waters.

When Imogene is seventeen, her father, now a famous author of medical mysteries, strikes out in the middle of the night and doesn't come back. Neither Imogene's stepmother nor the police know where he could've gone, but Imogene is convinced he's looking for her mother. She decides to put to use the skills she's gleaned from a lifetime of her father's books to track down a woman she's never known, in order to find him and, perhaps, the answer to the question she's carried with her for her entire life.

Rebecca Podos' debut is a powerful, affecting story of the pieces of ourselves that remain mysteries even to us - the desperate search through empty spaces for something to hold on to.
-A copy was provided by Balzer + Bray for review-

So I’m not really sure what to think of this book. It wasn’t bad, and it had the potential to be really good, but it missed the mark. I’m all about background information and learning the history of the character and their lives, but this one was to the point that is was very disruptive to the story and it really just disconnected me from the whole thing. It was hard to really care abou the story and what was happening when it was interrupted for long stretches explaining something about the past. I get that it’s the thought process of the main character as she is the one telling the story, but it just did’t quite work for me.

Imogene is the MC and she was just okay to me. I get that she wants to know more about her mom and know what her dad refuses to tell her. The main thing going on in the book is to find her dad who is missing. Though, he did leave on his own. She is determined to follow the clue that he has left her and knows that by finding her mom, she will also find her dad. Oh yeah, and just so you know, her mom left when she was a baby and her dad is remarrried, so he left his daughter and his wife. So anyways… Imogene is really smart actually and she does a good job with the help of her friend. (Who I must say is a much better friend to her than Imogene is to her.) Due to her uncertain history of mental illness on her mother’s side, and her father having mental illness, she starts to question herself as well. She sticks with her search though, and even though she makes some really horrible choices and hurts those close to her at times, I did understnd where she was coming from.

I thought that this book did have a great story and I did like the mystery of Imogene puzzling things out. Like I said before though, all the long descriptions of past things just really took me away from the story. I wanted to really care about what Imogene was going through and to feel her emotions, but I just didn’t. When I would start to get wrapped up in her life, it would go into something about a resturaunt that they used to go to or something and it was hard to get back into her head. This was a good book about how mental illness can both tear a family down, but also bring them together. It really did do a good job at that. It showed how much Imogene was struggling not just with her father missing, but even events through her life that could have been much different had she not been so affected by what her father is going through and wondering about her mom. I liked this, but I just couldn’t love it since I couldn’t fully get into the story. I would definitely try out other books by this author though in the future.

3 Stars
3 Hot Espressos

Review: Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch

Review: Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch

Posted by on 09/18/2015 • 8 Comments

Have you ever had one of those days where you feel like something was… incomplete? That things dragged on more than they should have had? Like the story could’ve been tighter, could’ve had the same essential elements and plot points, AND still give a sense of completeness, as if this small story arc of a bigger story arc has been reached?

This is one of those days – those days where I felt nothing but underwhelmed.

You guys might be well-aware of my love for the first book. I flailed over it, gave it 5-fantastic-stars, and shoved the book (and its pretty cover!) pretty much to everyone’s faces, imploring them, demanding them, that they read Snow Like Ashes as soon as they could, and that I wouldn’t be accepting any flimsy excuses. It was…

Audiobook Review: 99 Days by Katie Cotugno

Audiobook Review: 99 Days by Katie Cotugno

Posted by on 06/29/2015 • 2 Comments

I don’t really know to say about this book since I didn’t really care for it much. The only reason I finished it was because I was listening to the audiobook on the train home from NYC and I decided I might as well finish since I got that far. I don’t really know why I even wanted to read it really. Maybe because I really liked her first book, but I hate cheating so I was bound to not like this one. It wasn’t just that though. Some of the characters besides Molly just really irritated me. Then the romance was just not something I could get behind. The one thing I did enjoy about this was the narrator though. Allyson Ryan did really well at bringing emotion to…

Audiobook Review: None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio

Audiobook Review: None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio

Posted by on 06/26/2015 • 5 Comments

This is the second book that I have read that covers the topic of intersex, and it was very good. I love learning new things, and though I already had a small bit of knowledge, I did learn many new things. What I really enjoyed about this was that you are discovering things along with the MC. It was interesting to see her discovering this about herself at her age, not knowing that there was anything different her whole life up until that point. There were some great side characters, then some not so great ones too. I wish it had been a bit more deep and packed more emotion into it, but in general I was very pleased with it.

Kristin is a pretty popular girl, and a…

Review: The Cage by Megan Shepherd

Review: The Cage by Megan Shepherd

Posted by on 05/04/2015 • 10 Comments

Everything considered, this is not a bad book at all – the writing is good and flows well, the world building is excellent, and the characters well developed – but I was kind of meh about a large portion of it.

My biggest complaint is how a big part or the book is spent bickering and pointlessly planning an escape. I mean, how do they expect to get back home? They’re in some alien world for gods sake and Cora’s plan is to make a run for it and hope for the best? It’s like she never even takes this into question until way later when she makes up some half-ass plan that seems to be all about blind luck and a whole lot of guessing. I’m all for…

Review: The Cage by Megan Shepherd

Review: The Cage by Megan Shepherd

Posted by on 04/08/2015 • 12 Comments

Gah, I’m not sure what to think about this book. One one hand, I feel like it’s definitely unique and refreshing, partaking on a sci-fi idea and molding it into something new. On the other hand, it had a lot of things that made me raise my eyebrow, want to bang my head on a wall, and gouge my eyes out.

Let’s get one thing straight, though: the writing is mad awesome. It’s been a while since I’ve read such beautiful writing that reads like a sweet harmony, as if reading it is like listening to angelic music. I have heard of the author’s writing prowess in reviews of her previous series The Madman’s Daughter, but now I am a firm believer. The narration and how the words were connected and…

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens  by Becky Albertalli

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens by Becky Albertalli

Posted by on 04/06/2015 • 27 Comments

This book was so sweet and realistic. I couldn’t help but love it. It really captured the reality of someone who might be going through the same type of situation. I loved the characters, the story, all of it really. It didn’t totally blow me away or anything, but it was an amazing story that I will highly recommend to others. Once again, I am happy that more and more YA books are covering topics such as this in such a fantastic way.

I adored Simon. He isn’t embarrassed about being gay, he just doesn’t know how to tell anyone. His family is great and caring, but his dad is known to crack some gay jokes. He knows that they will except it, as well as his friends, but…

Review: Get Dirty by Gretchen McNeil

Review: Get Dirty by Gretchen McNeil

Posted by on 02/27/2015 • 6 Comments

Remember the time when I kept sayingGet Even, the first book of this duology, was better as a standalone?

Well, I now eat my words, because if that book was a standalone, Get Dirty wouldn’t exist, and I would have missed a book that was BAD. ASS. AWESOME. Seriously, guys. I enjoyed this way more than I expected to, and I’m so happy with how everything was written and concluded!

I mean, seriously? It doesn’t only has suspense (I was on my toes the whole time), unpredictability (I swear I couldn’t guess who the perpetrator was… the timing of the clues and how they were laid out and everything made me SECOND-GUESS EVERYONE), girl power (four girls with different personalities being fantastic together and individually), but humor, too! I swear, guys, this one made…