Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

girl-in-piecesI received this book for free as an advanced reader’s copy.

When I started it, I figured it was going to be just another book about a teenage girl who’s suicidal and is stuck in a hospital the entire story, but I was sorely mistaken. Each character in this book is written so beautifully. Even if we only meet someone for a second, there is so much detail put into who that person is, we feel like we’re really meeting them in person. Charlie is so relatable as a main character, it was easy to read as if I was her, to put myself in her shoes. Her relationships with other characters are extremely real. The people she meets and befriends aren’t perfect. Each one has a unique personality with problems of their own. As far as “romantic” relationships go, there’s no studly man who saves the day. Charlie makes her life her own, but she learns to accept help when necessary. The story doesn’t move slowly or too fast.

Girl in Pieces is one of the best books I’ve read in a while. It shows that no matter how bad things get, people can always change or redeem themselves, but it also shows the other side of that, what happens when someone can’t fix what’s broken inside them. That may be why I love it so much. Not to mention the countless references to Van Morrison and Bob Dylan and the two paragraphs near the end that I will never be able to get out of my mind. This book spoke to me and pulled me into a book hangover. “Fucking angelic,” as Ellis would say. 😉

 

About the Author:kathleen-glasgow1

Kathleen Glasgow is the author of the New York Times best-selling novel, Girl in Pieces.

She lives in Tucson, Arizona and is a researcher for The Writer’s Almanac. Girl in Pieces has been named to “best of lists by Goop, TeenVogue, BN Teen, Refinery29, EW.com, TeenReads, and more.

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson

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Jenna Fox is a seventeen year old coma patient/car accident survivor who has just woken up….without her memories. As Jenna works to remember who she is, she realizes that her family is keeping secrets from her. Secrets about Jenna’s accident, her recovery, and what these things may mean for her future. Can Jenna depend on her new friends and her suddenly distant Grandmother for the truth? Even if she can, will it be too much to take? 

This was my third time reading this book and it was just as good as the times before. Mary E. Pearson has created a story that will draw you in and keep you there. You just have to figure out what is going on with Jenna! Why are her parents acting so strange? Where are her friends who were in the accident with her? Was she responsible? This book is amazing that it brings up so many questions and answers them all by the end. And the characters all have their own life that shines through. Even though you’re constantly on Jenna’s side, it’s easy to see what other characters are thinking and feeling and why certain ones made the decisions they did. A great book for any aged reader. Absolutely amazing.

Make sure you pick up THE ADORATION OF JENNA FOX today! Also, I recently found out it is the first of a series! Review on the second book to come! 🙂

Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler

Now to be honest, it took me a few months to read this book. Not because it’s a bad book – in fact it’s a WONDERFUL book, I was just so busy!

In this book by Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket!! A Series of Unfortunate Events, anyone??) Min is a 17 year old girl riding in a truck and writing a letter to her ex boyfriend explaining to him (yup, you guessed it) why they broke up. As she’s writing the letter, she’s adding special items from their relationship into a box that she plans to leave on his doorstep. Just a few of these many items include a cookbook, a trench coat, and about a million rose petals.

WHY WE BROKE UP is incredibly witty. I totally identified with Min’s dry sense of humor and her interests. I even kind of liked Ed up to a point. (Ed is the ex boyfriend) Throughout the book, I found myself kind of hoping they would work out, but by the end, I was so glad they did not. By the middle of the novel, there is a lot of foreshadowing about the incident that causes Min and Ed to break up, I’ll be honest, I saw it coming a mile away. But as they always say, “It’s not about the end of the journey, it’s how you get there.”

If you’re looking for a funny, sad, smart book that will help you get over a breakup/ex, this book is for you. 🙂

THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green

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THE FAULT IN OUR STARS tells the love story of Hazel and Augustus. Both, incredibly funny and intelligent, and both, diagnosed with fatal diseases at young ages. For Hazel, she’s lived with her lung issues for years, everyday knowing that it could be her last. Augustus; however, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, but was classified as in remission after losing half a leg.

The duo meets at an illness support group that Hazel’s parents make her go to. The chemistry between them is undeniable and they soon start spending all of their time together and learning more about each other. This leads to Hazel having Augustus read her favorite book – An Imperial Affliction – which ends abruptly with the reader asking questions. Hazel desperately wants to meet the author and find her answers before it’s too late for her, so when Augustus offers her his “wish” from the Make-a-Wish Foundation, they go on their adventure to Amsterdam to meet Peter Van Houten, the author with all the answers…..or so they think.

After a less than productive meeting with Van Houten, Gus and Hazel spend some quality time growing closer in Amsterdam. This is when Hazel finds out that Gus’s osteosarcoma has come back. Once the pair is back home, Hazel spends the time she has left with Augustus showing him how/why his life has turned out exactly the way he’s wanted it to.

 

Never has a book made me laugh so hard to the point of tears and then cry just as hard, but from sadness. This was a good book. I read it in two days and when I wasn’t reading it, I was trying to figure out when I would get to read it again. I loved the characters, all of them – even Van Houten. I also really wish An Imperial Affliction was a real novel cus I wouldn’t mind reading it.

I was hesitant at first to read TFIOS because I had heard that it was so sad. But I am so glad I did. It has become one of my favorite books and I’m sure that if I were to reread it – no matter how many times – that I would still laugh and cry in all the spots I laughed and cried in before. That, to me, constitutes an amazing book. And who are we kidding, could John Green ever write a bad book? No. Probably not. 🙂

Collateral by Ellen Hopkins

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Collateral is Ellen Hopkins’s newest novel. It tells the story of Ashley, a grad student at San Diego State University. She’s studying to be a social worker, but she’s not sure that’s really the path she wants to take. Something else she’s not sure about is marrying her Marine beau, Cole. They had met in a bar five years earlier. It wasn’t love at first sight like with their friends Darian and Spencer, but it did turn from lust to love pretty quickly. Together, they’ve survived four deployments, a death of a parent, and an old flame coming back into the picture. But a war can easily change a person. It can turn a once sweet, loving, poetry writing man into a paranoid, angry, bitter death machine. As Ashley witnesses this change in Cole, she starts to second guess her time spent with him and her plans for a future with him. She also meets another man, a professor, who shows her what it could be like to be with someone who LIVES – and not just for the war, but for other things. For doing what he loves. 

This was an excellent book. Mrs. Hopkins had me gripped from the very first page. She is my favorite author for a reason and that is because she really knows how to put you inside the characters’ minds. And not just the main characters, but the supporting ones too. She makes such a connection between her readers and the people in her stories to the point where you feel as though you’re reading about yourself. 

Collateral shows the struggle of being a military wife AND of being a military man. It describes the sacrifices and challenges that go with loving someone and doing all you can for them, while learning to do what you need to do for yourself. This novel makes you think up until the very end when Ashley finally makes her choice. I can’t wait to read Mrs. Hopkins’s next tale. 🙂