Live and Let Shop (Spy Goddess #1)

Live and Let Shop (Spy Goddess, 1)

Author: Michael P. Spradlin

Publisher: Open Road Media YA

Release Date: 12/10/13


four stars

*I received this book for review from NetGalley*

Quotes I liked:

“Sweet. reasonable, non-conspiracy-believing Pilar. So much work to do on her.”

“If I got out of this, I swore, I would write down a list of good comebacks and memorize it.”

Goodreads Synopsis:

“The hilarious new series Spy Goddess launches in paperback, bringing this witty combination of espionage, action, mystery, and girlpower to a wider audience.

Blackthorn Academy, meet Rachel Buchanan

I’m not a delinquent…I’m just misunderstood.

Of course, the judge didn’t see it that way. She gave me a choice: juvenile detention or boarding school in Pennsylvania, of all places. That’s how I wound up at freaky Blackthorn Academy. This school is clearly hiding some major secrets.

And here’s something you should know about me: Rachel Buchanan never gives up when there are secrets to uncover. Watch out, Blackthorn Academy!

This new series is funny, fast–paced, and perfect for fans of Alias, Charlie’s Angels, or Buffy.”

My Thoughts:

This was a very light read. If you are looking for a novel that is cute, but still interesting, then this is your book! I thought that it was very witty with well-written humor. The characters were adorable and I felt so connected to them. And can we please talk about the plot twist? The plot twist. Oh, the plot twist. It was extremely unexpected and I thought it was absolutely genius! The plot twist made this book so much better than what I expected.

There were a few mistakes in this book. Spradlrin tended to contradict himself occasionally. There were a couple places in the novel where he would say one thing in a sentence and then a few sentences later, would claim something differently or write the complete opposite of what was said previously. Besides that, though, I did not find anything else that I had complaint about.

Overall, I really liked this book! I would definitely recommend reading it. I would probably recommend it to age 13 or 14 and up.


The Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19402043-live-and-let-shop


Inkheart (Inkworld #1)

Inkheart (Inkworld, #1)

Author: Cornelia Funke

Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks

Release Date: 6/1/2005


Quote I liked:

“’Every book should begin with attractive endpapers,’ he had once told Meggie. ‘Preferably in a dark color: dark red or dark blue depending on the binding. When you open the book it’s like going to the theater. First you see the curtain. Then it’s pulled aside and the show begins.’”


Goodreads Synopsis:

“Twelve-year-old Meggie learns that her father, who repairs and binds books for a living, can “read” fictional characters to life when one of those characters abducts them and tries to force him into service.


Characters from books literally leap off the page in this engrossing fantasy. Meggie has had her father to herself since her mother went away when she was young. Mo taught her to read when she was five, and the two share a mutual love of books. He can “read” characters out of books. When she was three, he read aloud from a book called Inkheart and released characters into the real world. At the same time, Meggie’s mother disappeared into the story. This “story within a story” will delight not just fantasy fans, but all readers who like an exciting plot with larger-than-life characters.”


My Thoughts:

One thing that stood out in this book was the language. Funke wrote very beautifully and it had a myriad of quotes that I absolutely loved! Each chapter began with a quote from another book that foreshadowed what would occur in the following chapter. I really enjoyed that aspect of the book. I thought that the story was a creative idea, which could have made for a fantastic novel. I had seen the movie based off of this book a few years ago, which I adored. That is probably the main reason that I wanted to read Inkheart. I also have heard many great things about the tale as well.


That being said, I did not like the pacing of this book at all. I felt as if the book was about 500 pages, give or take a few, of words and about 100 to 200 of actual content. I found the majority of the novel a struggle to read, as it did not really engage me. I did not really get into the story until the last few chapters when it started to pick up.


Overall, I thought this book was “okay.” There were some facets of it that I really loved, but generally it was a dreary read for me. I will be reading the next book in the trilogy soon, as I am curious to see whether it is any better then the first. I have heard a great amount of positive reviews about this novel, so if you feel as if you may like it check it out, because many people did enjoy it! Personally, if someone was deciding between reading the book or watching the move, I would urge them to watch the movie instead of reading the book.


The Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28194.Inkheart




What I Thought of the Divergent Movie

Okay, so yesterday night I went to see Divergent. I arrived with four other people an hour early. I was so proud of myself for beating the crowd. Did we actually? No. No we did not. I pre-ordered the tickets, so I didn’t have to wait in line at the ticket office only to discover that they were sold out. So we strolled past the ticket guy who was scanning tickets ready to go into the theater and then I see it. The line. The ghastly line that I was so trying to avoid. We had to wait in it to get into the theater. UGH. The theater was literally a mad house-there were so many people there, mainly teenagers I thought, and some of them were even dressed in faction garb, which I found hilarious. Finally, we settled into our seats and it began. I loved this movie! The crowd reacted collectively-clapping, sighing, and cheering at the same scenes (which was highly entertaining in itself). The movie, though, was fantastic. I was so glad to see that much of the movie remained true to the book, as book-to-movie adaptations so often do not. I thought that the actors were fantastic, as was the pacing and the sets. There were a few things that I was slightly irritated by however. The actress who played Cristina was way shorter than the actress who played Tris (correct me if I am wrong, but in the book it is supposed to be the other way around). Also, here was no chemistry between Al and Tris. He talked to her a bit and his face was shown, but other than that they were not really even friends in the movie (until SPOILER****he tries to kill her). Generally though, I totally fell in love with this movie and cannot wait until the next one (Is there to be a next one? I hope so/would assume so! If anyone knows, can you tell me in the comments?) I would definitely recommend seeing this 🙂  


Have a great weekend,




*I was sent this book for a review by the author*

Author: Greg Schroeder

Publisher: Smashwords

Release Date: September 2013


Quote I loved:

“Oh, the dichotomy of a dad Loving the good but dreading the bad. So proud he’s growing up. So sad he’s growing up” (Schroeder 4).  


Goodreads Synopsis:

More poems of calm, quiet, hope, and everyday happiness. Featuring a series on Hurricane Sandy as well as the transitions we all face – summer to fall, child to adult, storm to quiescence.

My Thoughts:


I thought this poetry collection to be very well written and filled with emotion. My favorite work would be “Dichotomy,” which explored the inner workings of a father’s mind.

I think that Schroeder is a most talented poet who possesses a gift of conveying emotions in a relatable way.

I did, however, feel as if the collection was missing something. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it did leave a bit to be desired. Perhaps it needed the poems to be divided into more tangible categories. I was a bit confused because there were specific groups for certain poems, however, I couldn’t tell how some were meant to be related. 

Overall, I quite enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it. Age-wise, I would recommend Transitions to ages 14 and up.


The Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18482869-transitions?ac=1



The Principles of Love (Principles of Love #1)

The Principles of Love


   Author: Emily Franklin

Publisher: Open Road Media YA

Original Release Date: 7/5/05

This Edition: 11/12/13



*I received this book from NetGalley for review*

Quote I liked:

“Flowerless and without pre-scripted dialogue, he isn’t perfect. He’s real.”


Goodreads Synopsis:


What do you really know about Love?


Love’s her name, but it’s not her whole story . . .


Love Bukowski is a new sophomore at Hadley Hall, the posh prep school where her father is now principal. Raised by her single dad (with more than a little help from her funky aunt Mable), almost-sixteen-year-old Love is strong willed, with a wry sense of humor—but will she fit into the world of Hadley Hall? In the made-for-TV version of her life, she’s got cool friends and hot guys galore. But being a “fac brat” makes new friends hard to come by, and the guys—well, that remains to be seen. Now Love’s got to step it up if she’s going to overcome her less-than-glamorous reality and get that walk-on role in her own fantasies.


My Thoughts:


The plot in this book was adorable. WARNING: this book contains a love triangle *cue scary music.* I loved how well developed the characters in this novel were.  Love, the main character, was very well-crafted to be a musician and an angst-filled teenage girl. Love’s love interests (haha) were super cute, and kept me reading to discover who she would end up in a relationship with.


What I disliked about this book was the pacing. I became extremely confused in some parts of this book, because the author did not transition well. Time would pass between paragraphs, which was not made clear, so I had to either re-read them or keep reading and infer that time had passed. This book was also quite predictable as I neared the close of the book. Also, the book was fairly crude as well.


Overall, the book was a pleasant read. The main character was 16 years old, so I suppose I would recommend this to 16 year-olds at a minimum.


The Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18722697-the-principles-of-love










Book Playlist: the Scarlet Letter

Recently for school, I had the pleasure of reading The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. I really enjoyed it, and decided to create a playlist for it! These are songs that I think fit in with the plot or characters of the book. *They are in no specific order.* So, without further ado, here are the songs:


In My Daughter’s EyesMartina McBride

The Band Perry

If I Ain’t Got YouAlicia Keys

Isn’t This A Lovely DayElla Fitzgerald

Somewhere Beyond the SeaBobby Darin

Let Her GoPassenger

Say SomethingA Great Big World

Miss Movin’ OnFifth Harmony

FairytaleSara Bareilles

Stupid Boy-Keith Urban

DaughtersJohn Mayer

KeroseneMiranda Lambert

SleepsongSecret Garden



Hope you enjoyed it 🙂 I tried to choose a variety of different music genres. Have a great day!

The Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12296.The_Scarlet_Letter?ac=1





Princesses Don’t Get Fat

Princesses Don't Get Fat



Author: Aya Ling

Publisher: Not Listed

Release Date: 8/24/13



Quote I liked:

“‘Stay here with me, Valeria.’ He cleared his throat. ‘Marry me.'”


Goodreads Synopsis:

A fairy tale romance with a plus-sized heroine and plenty of dessert. 


Princess Valeria of Amaranta is fat, but she doesn’t care. All she wants to do is to eat and lead an idle life. When it becomes apparent she cannot get a husband, her mother decides to send her to the Royal Riviera Academy of Fighting Arts. For a chubby princess who has never picked up a sword, life at the Academy is torture. Worst of all, the food is terrible. 


Valeria decides to improve Rivieran cuisine by sneaking into the palace kitchens and offering her expertise, never expecting the crown prince would take interest in her kitchen excursions. As they spend more time together, the princess must decide whether she should become thin or stay in the kitchens with her beloved desserts and remain fat


My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this book! I thought that it was extremely empowering in terms of self confidence. I definitely came away from this book feeling more confident in myself. I thought that the plot was really unique and well-thought out. The pacing was fantastic in this novel as well. It was a fairly quick read, but I felt that it was the perfect length for this type of story.


The only criticism I really have for Princesses Don’t Get Fat is the connection I did not feel with the characters. I felt as if the main character was a bit out-of-touch with myself and the other characters as well. I simply did not feel the connection that I would have desired with the characters.


This book really surprised me because I was not expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. I know that this book is currently free on Amazon for Kindle and Barnes and Noble for Nook, so go check it out to see if it’s still free! I would definitely say that this book is appropriate for all ages.


The Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18372538-princesses-don-t-get-fat