For readers around the globe. :)

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

The End and Other Beginnings

When I heard Veronica Roth was writing a book of short stories based in the future, I knew I had to have it. But I didn't realize how much I was going to love it.

Each story was so well written! I was enthralled by the first four stories and then felt kind of indifferent about the last two, which take place in Shotet territory (aka the same universe as Carve the Mark). Each story had darker undertones than I was expecting but they were fantastic nonetheless.  The very first story in the book "Inertia" was my favorite. It felt like the future, but was also heavily rooted in reality. It deals with pain, depression, love, and loss.

Even though I was not a huge fan of the Shotet stories, "The Transformationists" was great. It leads a boy through what is essentially a detention center for a crime he didn't intend to commit (but ya know, currentgifts are tricky). Each story tackled a real topic with a futuristic twist and it worked incredibly well. The End and Other Beginnings is now not only one of my favorite Veronica Roth books, but also one of my favorite short stories collections as well.

Looking for other books by Veronica Roth?

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Breaking Bailey

I have a newfound appreciation for this series.
 
I started reading the Anonymous Collection books when I was a teenager and it was a gateway for me to start learning about addiction, abuse, prostitution, and other terrible things that some teens go through. It blew my mind as a teen that other kids my age were actually going through things like this. I was skeptical about this one because the last one I read just left me feeling like I had my run with the collection. But this one renewed my love of them because I can see the downfall as it's happening and understand that raw feeling that leaves teens feeling helpless and alone.

Breaking Bailey deals with addiction, specifically Meth, Adderall, and Percocets.We meet Bailey who is grieving the loss of her mother and living away from home for the first time ever, at a prestigious boarding school. She has a love of chemistry and is hoping to get into Harvard. So when a group of teens ask her to join their Science Club she jumps at the chance. Just a little thing she didn't know though....the Science Club is actually a rundown building with a lab in the basement, a lab where they cook meth. Each teen has their own job in the Club and Bailey quickly becomes a "chemist." Obviously those raw teen emotions come out and she starts dating Warren, her meth cooking partner. Soon she becomes hooked on Adderall and eventually Percocets.

This book focuses on a few things. Bailey quickly got hooked because she didn't like the crash after taking the pills. She physically needed them to get through the day because her body craved the chemicals that her brain could no longer produce on its own. Her downfall happens pretty quickly. Everything starts becoming clearer for her when she realizes the horrors of meth addiction and how it can tear families apart. She wants out.

In true Go Ask Alice fashion, I'm sure you can guess how it ends.

Looking for the rest of the series?

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Intrusive Thoughts

 
So a few weeks ago one of my friends started telling me about how his friend Tristan wrote a book. A "psychedelic noir" is how he described it to me. Which had me saying, "Uh, yes please." So Tristan sent over a copy of his book, Intrusive Thoughts (which I'm very thankful for).
This book focuses on a detective named Jacqueline who is having lapses in time. While she's in this altered state of mind, she is seeing someone who looks nearly identical to her committing murders all around the city. She's finding hysterical psychiatrists, dirty cops, and murder; everywhere. When her friend, and co-worker, Clara steps in to say she's worried about her....shit hits the fan.
There's no way Jacqueline is the one committing these murders, but the only way to find out is to stay in that altered mindset for longer periods of time. Which led me to believe that Jacqueline has Multiple Personality Disorder and just hasn't accepted it yet. I don't know if that's how the author was trying to portray her, but that's definitely the vibe I was getting. 

The only thing that I wish was different about this book is that it had chapters instead of just small page breaks It made it slightly harder to read because the narration switches very suddenly and it takes a minute to get the right voice back in your head for that POV.

Overall, it was a good book with a unique topic that I haven't found in other books!

Huge thanks to Rey for suggesting I read it and even bigger thanks to Tristan for sending me a copy!

Friday, October 4, 2019

The Dog Went Over the Mountain

 
Bittersweet.
That's the word I would use to describe this book.
In this ever-changing world, Peter Zheutlin realized there were thing he still wanted to do. On the cusp of his 65th birthday, Peter loaded up his BMW and helped his rescued dog Albie into the backseat. For the next 6 weeks they would eat, sleep, and breathe the open road. Inspired by the classic Steinbeck book Travels with Charley, Peter set off to re-live Steinbeck's legacy in this own way.

I was drawn to this book because I've loved all of his other rescue dog books, which all feature Albie. When Peter talks about the unconditional love he has for his dog, it was emotional for me. Just a few weeks ago I found myself crying on a road trip with my rescue dog, Sophie. With her sound asleep in my arms, I thought back to how small and scared she was 4 years ago when I took her in. I can't believe how far we've come together, how much she trusts me to protect her. now. And I think that's how Peter feels with Albie. It's hard to decipher was our pups are thinking and feeling, but it's nice to ponder the thought that they enjoy our company as much as we enjoy theirs.

Huge thank you to Peter Zheutlin and Pegasus Books for sending me an ARC!

Looking for other books by Peter Zheutlin?