Something in Between by Melissa de la Cruz – Booktalk

Having just read The Sun is also a Star Nicola Yoon which is a story about a family getting deported back to Jamaica, Something in Between was almost like the happier version of The Sun is also a Star. I don’t want to spoil Nicola Yoon’s book but i do want to say that if you liked The Sun is Also a Star then you might enjoy Something in Between and they share similar plot points and family struggles.


It feels like there’s no ground beneatscreen-shot-2017-01-21-at-3-41-33-pmh me, like everything I’ve ever done has been a lie. Like I’m breaking apart, shattering. Who am I? Where do I belong?

Jasmine de los Santos has always done what’s expected of her. Pretty and popular, she’s studied hard, made her Filipino immigrant parents proud and is ready to reap the rewards in the form of a full college scholarship.

And then everything shatters. A national scholar award invitation compels her parents to reveal the truth: their visas expired years ago. Her entire family is illegal. That means no scholarships, maybe no college at all and the very real threat of deportation.

For the first time, Jasmine rebels, trying all those teen things she never had time for in the past. Even as she’s trying to make sense of her new world, it’s turned upside down by Royce Blakely, the charming son of a high-ranking congressman. Jasmine no longer has any idea where—or if—she fits into the American Dream. All she knows is that she’s not giving up. Because when the rules you lived by no longer apply, the only thing to do is make up your own.


After reading Something in Between i came to the realisation that there are so many people that are struggling with the same thing that Jasmine and her family are struggling with and that this issue should come up more often in our topics of discussion. I enjoyed the concept of the book immensely and the story but obviously i had a few issues with the book since i gave it a 4/5 stars but otherwise it was amazing.

SPOILER DISCUSSION

The were multiple times in the book where i was almost in tears like the time when she received her scholarship and told her parents and instead of being happy for her they gave her devastating news that they were undocumented citizens and that she couldn’t accept the scholarship. I felt so unbelievably bad for her because she had been working so hard her whole life to get into a university but it backfires and she is at a loss.

I was in happy tears when she told her cheer team about her situation and they were all their for her, hugging her and telling her that they were going to be there for her. It made me realise how important it is so have a supportive group of friends that we love you no matter what.

My least favourite aspect of the book was probably her relationship with Royce especially the beginning, i don’t know why but it felt too cheesy. I wasn’t a fan of his cheesy pick up lines our texts but as their relationship progressed he grew on me and i didn’t mind him at all.

I have to say the most shocking part of the book for me was when Royce proposed to her. And although it made sense that if they got married she could stay in America i was like NO NO NO. They just got together and NO girl wants to get married for some legal reason, and i was super stressed while reading the part where that went to the courthouse but i was sooo relived when she came to her senses and said no to him. In the end she did accept Royce’s help from his father and i was so glad that they didn’t get deported after all and the Jasmine got the life she wanted.

xx
Taraana

 

 

The best books of 2016

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The time has come, where everyone is frantically posting their favourite books of 2016 and after hours of deciding and changing my favourite books of this year i have finally come up with a list that i’m pretty happy with. I have to say, this year i read a lot of books that i throughly enjoyed and gave a five stars on goodreads but there were only a few books that i believed were the best of the best for this year. I’m 3 books behind my goodreads schedule of 35 books but i’m really happy with all the books that i did read this year. Although i know next year will be a hectic one for me (because i’m starting to prepare for the HSC) i hope that i’ll be able to do read more of a variety of books and venture out to read different authors and genres. I’d also just like to say thank you to all you who have followed, commented or liked my blog because it means the word to me. Only this year i started to post more regularly and i have put more effort into my blog and i’m glad i did it because it makes me so happy that other people are enjoying reading just as much as i love creating my posts.

*I have taken inspiration from Alexandra from twirlingpages to come up with my list because it was hard to just randomly pick my favourites of this year.

favourite first in a series: Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

Lady Midnight was exactly the book i needed at the start of this year. It was SOO GOOD. I loved how much Cassandra Clare’s writing improved in Lady Midnight and this is my favourite first book of all her series. I especially loved the glimpses of other characters from her previous series that got cameos in Lady Midnight. If you’ve read ALL of Cassie’s other books (i mean ALL of them because then you’ll get the full experience of Lady Midnight) then you must read Lady Midnight!

favourite conclusion of a series: Winter by Marissa Meyer

I started this series in 2014 and every single book from this series had been on my favourite’s list because this books are just so compelling and the characters are just so delightful. I read Winter at the very beginning of this year and i STILL talk about it so i guess that explains how much i love it.

favourite standalone: Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella

I’ve read a tonne of standalone’s this year because i love reading contemporary’s and most of them are standalones but i have to say Finding Audrey was the one that made this list because i adored the writing and especially the small moments where we got a script of the video that Audrey was taking because that script constantly had me laughing.

favourscreen-shot-2016-12-29-at-3-35-29-pmite cover: Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything Everything was one of the many gorgeous cover’s of 2016. I wish i had a physical copy of the book because it sooo pretty. I love the small flowers drawn around the writing and the white background just makes it look so aesthetically pleasing *sighs*.

favourite friendship: Six of CroProcessed with VSCO with c1 presetws by                                          Leigh Bardugo

The entire crew from Six of Crows were what most people would say as #squad goals because they really are. I love the unexpectedness of their friendship and i love the journey of the friendship too. I freaking LOVED their dynamic and the dialogue was just soo good! I really recommend Six of Crows, not only for the friendship but also for the amazing world and plot that Leigh Bardugo had created.

              favourite new author: Sabba Tahir (An Ember in the Ashes)

Everything about Sabaa Tahir’s writing style had me in awe. I loved her writing style, her characters and especially the amazing word she created. An Ember in the Ashes was one of those books that had me captivated for the entirely of the book and i cannot wait to read the rest of the books in this series!

favourite book if the year: A court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Mass

Sarah J Mass is the QUEEN of writing fae. I’ve never read a book dedicated to fae’s and all that comes with but my god does Sarah write them to be your favourite fantasy creatures. I read Empire of Storms this year too but i didn’t love it as much as ACOMF which is why it didn’t make t on my favourites list. I love ACOMF so much because of how much Feyre’s character developed and how confident she became and not to mention how much i love Ryhs now after learning so much about him. And cannot wait for the final book in this trilogy!

What were your favourite books of 2016? Let Me know in the comments!

xx
Taraana

 

 

Why i started blogging and what it means to me.

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For a really long time, blogging was one of those things that i watched other people do (and really wanted to do myself) but never got the courage to do it myself. It was always one of those things that i thought ‘that’s not for me’ ‘people like me don’t do that’ ‘i don’t have the courage and TIME to do that’. And i made up a hundred other excuses on my ‘why i shouldn’t blog list'(in my head of course) when i realised that all the reasons were invalid. Deep down i wanted to do it, i needed an outlet to discuss my favourite books, obsessions and just WRITE. So that’s when i decided to stop just being a reader of content but also to become a creator of content online.

The thought of blogging first came to me when i read Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armenrout. The main character ‘Katy’ was a book blogger and i felt inspired to try and do it myself. I’d only watched booktubers and i’d never heard of a book blogger so went online and found an entire community of book bloggers, people i could relate to. So i guess you could say that’s where it all began, my love for blogging.

Booktube was another factor, because i watched it ALL the time and loved the content but i wasn’t courageous enough to put myself out there on the interwebs and edit those videos  so came back to the idea of blogging. I knew then that if i didn’t do it now i’d never start my own blog. And then one day on the tenth on January 2015, i decided to create my very own website, wrote up a post and hit publish and that felt AMAZING, i was sooo glad i did it. Since then i have changed my blog from blogger to wordpress which is MUCH better and i have enjoyed every step of the way.

I know i’m not the best or the most regular blogger, but i try and the most important thing is that i love it. I love creating new posts, taking the pictures for it, writing it and hitting the publish. It is so satisfying and gives me a feeling of accomplishment and i don’t regret it at all.

Do you blog? if so, why did you start and what does it mean to you? Let me know in the comments below.

xx
Taraana

btw. IF ANYONE HAS WATCHED THE NEW GILMORE GIRLS LET ME KNOW BECAUSE I’M IN DESPERATE NEED OF A GILMORE BUDDY ABOUT RIGHT NOW and also how GOOD and EMOTIONAL were those 6 hours?

Ten books to read if you like fluff

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish you can find more information about it here. Due to my lack of reviews you can probably guess that i’m taking FOREVER to finish my current read (mostly because TV shows exist+procrastination) so instead of the review this week i’m doing a tag of sorts.

Fluff;
Adorable, romantic cuteness in books/movies that makes one squeal and smile like a cheshire cat.

With that i’m going to begin my list of books that you should read if you like fluff, which are in no particular order.

These books are probably my most read contemporary books and i ADORE them so much. They are sooooo cute and the male leads in these books are just so perfect. I love the family aspect in To all the boy’s I’ve loved before soo much it makes me want to have sisters like Margo and Kitty. I also really relate to Cath from Fangirl on such a real level, like in a past life i could have been her. The friendships in Anna and the French Kiss and PERFECT and Etienne is just the cutest ahhhhh.

To be honest i love all of Morgan Matson’s books but Second Chance Summer and Since You’ve been Gone are my favourites are my favourites. They have all the cute romances and friendships that make you want to want to live with them for the summer. My True Love Gave to Me is a collection of short stories written by various authors and edited by Stephanie Perkins and i loved every single one of them, some more than other but nonetheless i loved them all. The stories are cute winter romances that hit your heart in less than 50 pages which is what i love most about these stories. But my top 4 favourites are:
1. Midnights by Rainbow Rowell
2. It’s a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins
3. Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White
4. Polaris is where you’ll find me by Jenny Han

And these books are just as cute as the rest. I gobbled up Attachments and Slammed in one sitting which probably wasn’t good for my sleeping schedule but who cares right? I loved the relationships in My life Next Door  especially the family relationship and most importantly the relationship between Jase and Samantha. To end my list is The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, to be honest the plot and pacing of this book didn’t quite do it for me but the characters did. There is soooo much cuteness and the romantic gestures in this book which are bound to make you swoon.


What are your top 10 books that make you swoon and want to jump up and down like a total weirdo because of the cuteness overload? Let me know in the comments below.

xx
Taraana

Burn, Re-write, Re-read- Tag

waffles-1Today i’ll be doing a tag that i saw on Cherry from Read Forevermore after i stumbled across her blog this morning.


The Rules

  1. Randomly choose 3 books. 
  2. For each category, decide which book to burn, which one to rewrite, and which to reread.
  3. Repeat until you have completed three rounds 

Round 1

Burn: Nowhere But Here. This book was one of those ‘i liked other books written but this author so i’m going to try another one, but i didn’t like this one. I didn’t like the characters or the world and it felt verrryyy predicable.
Re-write: Ashes to Ashes. I loved the first two books of this trilogy and i even enjoyed the first half of this book but towards the end i started to hate it which is why i want someone to re-write the ending of this book.
Re-read: A Torch Against the Night. Probably one of the best books this year. That’s all that needs to be said.


Round 2

Burn: Requiem. This book was waaay too dramatic and ‘i don’t know who i love crap’ for me. I’m sorry to anyone that did enjoy it because i definitely did not. Also i didn’t think we got much of an ‘ending’ which adds to me dislike of this book.
Re-write: All The Bright Places. This was a really hard one because i loved the last two books in this round but i chose All The Bright Places because i wish we had more of Finch and Violet’s relationship and i don’t know just MORE. I still thoroughly enjoyed it though.
Re-read: What I Thought Was True. Only because i loved this book soo much that it’s on one of my ‘to re-read’ shelves because it is summer here in Australia and it reminds me so much of the beach and sunny weather.


Round 3

Burn: Acid. I think the fact that i can barely remember this book except for the fact that i didn’t fell connected with the characters AT ALL, say a lot.
Re-write: The Dream Thieves. It sucks that The Dream Thieves and To All the Boy’s I’ve loved Before are  in the same round because i adore them both. But the reason i chose The Dream Thieves for this category is because i didn’t enjoy it as much as the first one but i still loved it and the only thing i would change would be to have more dialogue between the whole gang but that’s only a teeny-tiny problem.
Re-read: To All the Boy’s I’ve loved before. The fact that i have re-read this book waaay too many times to remember speaks for itself. I just adored every inch of this book and cannot wait for the final book in the trilogy ‘Always and Forever Lara Jean’!!

xx
Taraana

 

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater- Book Talk

For at least two years i have contemplated reading the “Raven Boys” because EVERYONE recommends it to me. I have always been sceptical on this series because of the negative reviews on the “Shiver” trilogy but i am SO glad i finally decided to pick this book up (i just can’t believe it took me this long). I’ve heard people say that they stopped reading it because it was hard to get into “because the pace was slow” or they “couldn’t get into the writing style” but you have to stick it out for at least 50-80 pages before you decide to stop
reading because ” The Raven Boys” is absolutley wonderful. I finished it in three days and i couldn’t stop reading it after i really got into it.


Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue never sees them–until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks to her.

His name is Gansey, a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the Image result for the raven boys reviewscholarship student who resents the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul whose emotions range from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She doesn’t believe in true love, and never thought this would be a problem. But as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.


*The rest of this review is NOT spoiler free so if you haven’t read the book please don’t read the rest of this review.*

This book started off with a slow start, i can admit as i mentioned before, as Maggie Stiefvater describes every inch of her world in a detailed way which i appreciated because it gave me more insight into the world and the characters. “The Raven Boys” was one of the few books that i couldn’t quite tell where the story was going even after reading the blurb and half of the book. I was always thinking, What is going to happen? and i loved that aspect about this book, it kept me on my toes. The boys Adam, Gansey, Noah and Ronan are probably my favourite group of boys that i have ever read. Each boy has very distinctive character traits and each of them have a unique story which i loved reading about. I don’t know a thing about the Welsh mythology and i’m new to all things Glendower so everything was new to me. The information we got about Glendower is till a bit unclear to me but i’m sure we’ll get more information about him in the next three books.

Continue reading “The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater- Book Talk”

Watercolour Painting Therapy

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Yesterday as i was studying for my never ending exams and doing my textiles assignment, for which feels like forever, and began to get ever so tired with them i decided to try something that i have never done before but i had wanted to do for ages. Watercolour flowers. Whenever i browse through Pintrest i love looking at the watercolour art, i think it looks so pretty, especially to hang the finished art in your room, so i decided to give it a go and to be far i think i did alright. I know the flowers don’t go together, but i thought as practice i should learn to paint a variety of flowers. Unlike my These Broken Stars Inspired Painting , watercolour painting is really relaxing and therapeutic and i really enjoyed it and can’t wait to paint some more!

What is your relaxing activity or your new found hobby? Let me know in the comments below!

xx
Taraana