Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Book Review: Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan

Image result for boy meets boy
“I could point out that it isn't always easy knowing who you are and what you want, because then you have no excuse for not trying to get it.”

Hello readers! This month I picked up Boy Meets Boy and I really enjoyed it! It was the first novel I’ve read by David Levithan and I look forward to picking up another.

This is the story of Paul, a sophomore at a high school like no other: The cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen used to be a guy named Daryl (she now prefers Infinite Darlene and is also the star quarterback), and the gay-straight alliance was formed to help the straight kids learn how to dance. When Paul meets Noah, he thinks he’s found the one his heart is made for. Until he blows it. The school bookie says the odds are 12-to-1 against him getting Noah back, but Paul’s not giving up without playing his love really loud. His best friend Joni might be drifting away, his other best friend Tony might be dealing with ultra-religious parents, and his ex-boyfriend Kyle might not be going away  anytime soon, but sometimes everything needs to fall apart before it can really fit together right.

The first thing that struck me about this novel was how much I loved the town the main character, Paul, lived in. A place where all the teenagers gather together to dance away Sunday nights in the local bookstore and where the Boy Scouts quit and reform as the Joy Scouts because the Boy Scouts wouldn't accept gay members, and there may not be an accepting town like this for years to come, but it was nice to just live in this world for a short time while I read. Secondly I loved the unique characters that all shone in their own way and all seemed to steal my heart, and all felt like someone I would know in real life. The narrator Paul, is incredibly comfortable in his own skin, and his romance with Noah, the shy but strong artist had me smiling like an idiot for the majority of the novel. However despite the happy tone of this book, the third thing I loved was that it still addressed a majority of hard-hitting topics and it really just felt like a group of teenagers trying to find their place in the world, and the general happy tone of the plot doesn’t distract from these issues and topics which I really enjoyed.

Overall I adored this novel and all of it’s characters and would recommend it to anyone who loves feel-good books, lovable young love, and romantic comedies. Enjoy the end of your 2016, and we’ll see you next year with more great books!


Saturday, December 17, 2016

Book Review: Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige

Hi everyone! I'm glad to be back with another amazing book. This week I read Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige.

Seventeen-year-old Snow has spent her life 
locked in Whittaker Psychiatric-but she isn't
 crazy. And that's not the worst of it. Her
 very first kiss proves anything but
 innocent..when Bale, her only love, 
turns violent.
Image result for Pictures of Stealing snow

Despite Snow knowing that Bale would
 never truly hurt her, he is taken away
-dashing her last hope for any sort of 
future in the mental ward she calls home.
 With nowhere else to turn, Snow finds 
herself drawn to a strange new orderly
 who whispers secrets in the night about
 a mysterious past and a kingdom that's 
hers for the taking-if only she can find 
her way past the iron gates to the Tree
 that has been haunting her dreams. 

Beyond the Tree lies Algid, a land far 
away from the real world, frozen by a 
ruthless king. And there  awaits the River Witch, 
a village boy named Kai, the charming thief Jagger, 
and a prophecy that Snow will save them all.

I was thrilled when I found out Danielle Paige was coming. I have heard so many amazing things about her books. And everything was so true. Stealing Snow is Beautifully written. It made my heart melt in spots, ironically enough. I couldn't put the book down. It was a quick read, but a great one. I am planning on reading the rest of Danielle Paige's books over Christmas break.

There are some very funny scenes, that made me laugh out loud. Along with some sad parts, and happy parts, this book made me laugh and cry and of course fangirl scream. If you want a book that will make you feel alot, this certainly is the book for you.

As I was trying to think of similar books, I had trouble. It was unique, even though it is a retelling of the legend of The Snow Queen. The one book it kind of reminded me of was Red Queen be Victoria Aveyard, because Snow reminds me of Mare.

That's it for this one. I'll be back in January for another book review. I hope everyone has a great hloiday season and break!

Friday, December 9, 2016

Amazon Smile

Hello TBF readers!

The holidays are fast approaching! If you still have to do some Amazon holiday shopping, I have great news for you! If you decide to shop with Amazon Smile this year, please consider selecting the Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival for your chosen charity. Your purchases will help generate donations towards TBF! Shopping and helping out TBF? Win!

What are you waiting for?! Click HERE to start shopping at Amazon!

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Book Review: Impulse by Ellen Hopkins

Hey everyone! Glad to be back with another book review. This week: Impulse by Ellen Hopkins.

Sometimes you don't wake up. But if you happen to, you know things will never be the same

Three lives, three different paths to the same destination: Aspen springs, a psychiatric hospital for those who have attempted the ultimate act -- suicide.

Vanessa is beautiful and smart, but her secrets keep her answering the call of the blade.

Tony, after suffering a painful childhood, can only find peace through pills.

And Connor, outwardly, has a perfect life. But dig a little deeper and find a boy who is in constant battle with his parents, his life, and himself.

In one instant, each of these people decided enough was enough. They grabbed the blade, the bottle, the gun -- and tried to end it all. Now they have a second chance, and just maybe, with each other's help, they can find their way to a better life -- but only if they're strong and can fight the demons that brought them here in the first place.

I’m not sure what my expectations were when I first opened this book. But whatever they were, this book completely blew them away. Impulse is definitely one of the most incredible things I’ve read all year. Written entirely in stanza, this book goes into detail expressing themes of love, anger, and what it means to be alive. The three protagonists, Connor, Vanessa, and Tony, all have such rich backstories with trauma and hate and just a tad bit of happiness that’s all strung together to pull at your heartstrings for the entire book.
One of the greatest things about Impulse was the characters and how they interacted and grew with each other. The three main characters were all at Aspen Springs for generally the same reason: they all tried to commit suicide. And while each of them start out depressed and feeling alone, they work off each other throughout the book and grow with every page you’ll read.
One last thing I can say about this book is how realistic and mature it is. Normally, I stick to middle grade and fantasy stories, so Impulse was a major change for me. Without giving much away, all I can say is that it doesn’t hold much back. This book gets depressing a lot and includes some scenes that are definitely meant for a high school audience. So if you enjoy books that are a bit more mature and will leave an impression long after you’ve read the last page, then I cannot recommend Impulse by Ellen Hopkins enough!

That’s all for me this week. I’ll be back in January with another book by a 2017 TBF author. So until then, happy holidays and happy reading!