Monday, September 29, 2014

Book Reviews // Sept '14

The Story Book of Legends by: Shannon Hale

Goodreads synopsis-At Ever After High, an enchanting boarding school, the children of fairytale legends prepare themselves to fulfill their destinies as the next generation of Snow Whites, Prince Charmings and Evil Queens...whether they want to or not. Each year on Legacy Day, students sign the Storybook of Legends to seal their scripted fates. For generations, the Village of Book End has whispered that refusing to sign means The End-both for a story and for a life. What if the daughter of the Evil Queen, Raven, doesn't sign the Storybook of Legends? It could mean a happily never after for them both. 
My Review- This was a really cute idea and great for middle schools. However, there were some story issues but for a quick light read I enjoyed it.

Stars: ** (2.5 out 5)

If I Stay by: Gayle Forman 

Goodreads synopsis-On a day that started like any other, Mia had everything: a loving family, a gorgeous, admiring boyfriend, and a bright future full of music and full of choices. In an instant, almost all of that is taken from her. Caught between life and death, between a happy past and an unknowable future, Mia spends one critical day contemplating the only decision she has left. It is the most important decision she'll ever make. Simultaneously tragic and hopeful, this is a romantic, riveting, and ultimately uplifting story about memory, music, living, dying, loving. 
My Review- I went in reading this book totally not understand the description. Pretty much the girl get into a coma and is thinking about a decision. I will warn you if you don't like gory stuff then skip the first chapter. It was pretty yucky. Other then that I thought the book was unique in doing something a little different but in the end it was a typical young adult book. Although I was impressed with how the Author wrote the ending, expected but with a twist. 

Stars: * (1 out 5)

Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by: Lisa See

Goodreads synopsis-In nineteenth-century China, in a remote Hunan county, a girl named Lily, at the tender age of seven, is paired with a laotong, “old same,” in an emotional match that will last a lifetime. The laotong, Snow Flower, introduces herself by sending Lily a silk fan on which she’s painted a poem in nu shu, a unique language that Chinese women created in order to communicate in secret, away from the influence of men. As the years pass, Lily and Snow Flower send messages on fans, compose stories on handkerchiefs, reaching out of isolation to share their hopes, dreams, and accomplishments. Together, they endure the agony of foot-binding, and reflect upon their arranged marriages, shared loneliness, and the joys and tragedies of motherhood. The two find solace, developing a bond that keeps their spirits alive. But when a misunderstanding arises, their deep friendship suddenly threatens to tear apart.
My Review- Bittersweet and sad is this book but I love it anyways. The author writes wonderfully. I can feel all the experiences the characters do. I think this shows the ancient china beautiful and sad. It shows all the seasons of friendships. The only thing I "bad" was I was waiting for that terrible moment to happen (TINY PLOT SPOIL) it took the whole book to get to it. Still lovely though.
Stars: ***** (5 out 5)

Peony In Love by: Lisa See

Goodreads synopsis-Steeped in traditions and ritual, this story brings to life another time and place–even the intricate realm of the afterworld, with its protocols, pathways, and stages of existence, a vividly imagined place where one’s soul is divided into three, ancestors offer guidance, misdeeds are punished, and hungry ghosts wander the earth. Immersed in the richness and magic of the Chinese vision of the afterlife, transcending even death,Peony in Love explores, beautifully, the many manifestations of love. Ultimately, Lisa See’s new novel addresses universal themes: the bonds of friendship, the power of words, and the age-old desire of women to be heard.
My Review- I was really surprised by this book because I couldn't believe what happened so soon! I felt like I was betrayed but the author brought all the plot back together and wove an even deeper story. The author told this tale in such a beautiful way. The whole thing was beautiful and makes me want to learn so much more about that time. 
Stars: ***** (5 out 5)

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