ARC Review: The Sun is Also A Star by Nicola Yoon

Title: The Sun is Also A Star
Author: Nicola Yoon
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publisher: Corgi Childrens
Published: November 3rd 2016
Page Number: 384
Rating: 5/5


Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

How do you review one of your favourite books of 2016? It's answer: You don't. Well you do write a review but it will never do the book justice, especially when it's written by one of my now favourite authors, Nicola Yoon.
The story itself is....different. Now when I say different I don't mean it badly, in fact I mean it in probably one of the best ways possible. Essentially this book isn't told by two protagonists. It's told by many. Our main focus' are of course Daniel and Natasha but then we get little chapters from people they meet along the way in their journey of falling in love with each other. Whether that be one of the security guards Natasha sees at one of the offices she visits or it be the depiction of the word love. We get details to in sense create a love story that goes beyond the legal measures of love.
When I first started the book I initially just completely felt for Natasha. She's a protagonist that's very easy to love. Not only that but you garner a shit ton of respect for her. She's 12 hours away from being deported back to a place that's basically foreign to her, she's losing the friendship she's made since she came to America but most of all she's losing out on her dream. And if I'm being honest I did expect her to just let it get to her. Did she? Nope. She went out of her way to try everything so that her and her family could stay. She pushed and pushed and pushed until she got somewhere. And along that path is where she meets Daniel. A wannabe poet whose parents just want him to go to a great school and have a successful life where he won't need to worry about money like they both did.
Sadly Daniel never really understood that. He just saw it as his parents wanting him to do something that wasn't for him, especially as his brother had just failed at his first year. And while Daniel being the wannabe poet he's also a lot of a hopeless romantic. When he falls in love, he falls deep. And he falls deep in love with Natasha. Despite her hesitation.
I just honestly want everyone to read this book and love it like I do because it's a book I know I will treasure for a long time to come. I'll have that pull to reread it and I know I'll feel the exact same way I felt when I first read this book but only on a bigger scale. It's smartly, beautifully written and so good I want to shout it from the rooftop of my house.
A copy of the ARC was sent to me for a honest review.

Review: The Hotter You Burn by Gena Showalter

Title: The Hotter You Burn (The Original Heartbreakers #2)
Author: Gena Showalter
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: HQN Books
Published: July 28th 2015
Page Number: 416
Rating: 4.5/5


Beck O'ckley is ruthless in the boardroom...and the bedroom. He's never been with the same woman twice, and vows he never will. With a past as twisted as his, meaningless sex keeps the demons at bay. His motto: One and done. No harm, no foul.

Harlow Glass is the most hated girl in town. The beautiful artist is penniless, jobless and homeless. When she sneaks into Beck's home—her ancestral estate—for food, she's shocked by his early return...and her immediate, sizzling and intense attraction to him.

For the first time in Beck's life, he can't get a woman out of his mind. All too soon, friendship blooms into obsession and he'll have to break her heart...or surrender his own.

I really enjoyed the first book in this series and with Beck being one of my favourite male characters, I was excited to see his backstory into what made him who he is today. And Gena did not once disappoint. I got everything I wanted and more. Cute scenes that made me have butterflies, sexual tension that could have burned the pages in my hand and a former bully who had me rooting for her from page 1.
In the second book of the Original Heartbreakers series we follow our Hero, Beck who's a known playboy never being seen with the same woman twice. Our Heroine is Harlow Glass a former bully in school and now known for being a layabout after getting kicked out of her home by the bank because she supposedly wouldn't pay the rent. One of the thing Gena did so right about Harlow was that she created a character that everyone would either love to hate. It's human genetics. We all love to hate someone and vice versa.
However, Harlow is actually misunderstood a lot. She didn't have the best home life and like they say: You can choose your friends but you can't choose your family. And that goes heavily for Harlow. When her and Beck first officially meet it's because Harlow has stolen a pie from his fridge (Harlow's house is now owned by Jase, Beck and West). He chases her down and demands she pays him back otherwise he'll go to the authorities. To me this is the essential scene for the whole book.
The romance between these two was a little like child's play. But it keeps you on your toes, anticipating the moment they finally say those 3 precious words. I love you. And with Beck's past you can honestly understand why. His upbringing wasn't an easy one and he's lived with the guilt of lying to the police so his friend can take the shit for him. And we all know guilt can eat a person alive.
Was this book better than the first one? Absolutely. I actually loved Harlow's naivety because the person she was as a teenager was actually a character to hide the person she truly was. And her relationship with Beck is special because he's her first. I just honestly love anything Gena Showalter writes.

Books That Deal With Mental Illness

Back when I originally started to write this I was feeling very down. I was feeling more and more depressed over a sort period of time and I was having suicidal thoughts. I was struggling with life. My parents were noticing a change but I would just ignore it all and hope it'd go away with time. I was speaking to a friend online who made me see sense and  instead I raised the issues and decided to work on them. I'm feeling a lot better now. I'm happy as I could be, working hard to earn money to save for possibly going to University next year in 2017.

So with the feelings I had at the time, I wanted to visit some of the books that gave me a more positive view on mental health. So that's why I want to recommend some books to you guys. And in case any of you guys are having any negative thoughts, please tell someone. A friend, a family member or you can even speak to online forums: a place where I made so many amazing friends.

Now all of these books are amazing and I highly recommend them but I'm going to put these in order of how they affected me. Both personally and emotionally....


A lot of people who's seen the 'If I Stay' movie don't know that there's actually a sequel in book form. 'If I Stay' is a good book and the movie is just as book, but 'Where She Went' really did something to be. I never connected to Adam in 'If I Stay' but him having grown up by 3 years and sadly dealing with depression in 'Where She Went' made me connect to him so much. I felt his emotions and I understood him completely, it's one of those novels that stay with you for a long time. And to this date I'm still very much in love with it. So much so that I have a necklace with a quote from the novel inside.

"You were trying so hard to be my saviour that you left me all alone."
Another Gayle Forman book that absolutely left me a sobbing wreck. This book is a YA Standalone that doesn't just deal with depression but also suicide and while the main character has nothing to do with those mental illness the importance of those factors isn't taken away from the novel. Gayle Forman did her research and wrote a book that everyone could connect to. The last page of 'I Was Here' isn't just a memorial but it's also a celebration of those who have lost their lives to suicide. We don't always get to have out voices but it doesn't mean that it's the end of us. Beautifully written with so much emotion and drama.
"I was here."
It's unusual to have a YA Paranormal Romance series on this list but this is one of my favourite series because of how well Michelle Hodkin splits them both up but makes them the same. The series follows an incredibly insane narrator, she's someone you
can't trust. While the book has supernatural things going on, it also stays realistic in the mental health side. It's beautifully romantic but a complete and utter mind fuck. That's what keeps you going with this series.
"Thinking something does not make it true. Wanting something does not make it real."
'Pushing the Limits' deals with a lot of different mental illnesses but the main one it deals with is grief. Our main character, Echo is still trying to get over her older brother's death. The one person who she knew she could trust on. However, it also dealt with other issues that were very well written and researched. Its one of the things I love about Katie McGarry, she does physical research into her stories. She goes that extra mile. 'Pushing the Limits' is emotional and brave. It's beautiful and realistic. It's a book that everyone can relate to.
“I've already lost a piece of my mind. I can't trust you with what's left.” 
I, myself didn't rate this book highly but it wasn't due to it being badly written or the parts dealing with mental illness were not realistic. I had other reasons. But Am I Normal Yet? is possibly one of the best book to read about Anxiety. The way Holly depicts the feelings is so realistic. You feel exactly what the character is feeling and it was nice being able to find a story that I related to so well. The book follows a college student called Evie who's just trying to live a normal life, making friends and dating boys. But the issue is, Evie has anxiety and also suffers with OCD.
“Everyone's on the cliff edge of normal. Everyone finds life an utter nightmare sometimes, and there's no 'normal' way of dealing with it... There is no normal, Evelyn.”  
What books would you recommend that deal with mental illness?
Let me know in the comments!

Review: Walk The Edge by Katie McGarry

Title: Walk The Edge (Thunder Road #2)
Author: Katie McGarry
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publisher: Mira Ink
Published: March 10th 2016
Page Number: 442
Rating: 3.5/5

One moment of recklessness will change their worlds

Smart. Responsible. That's seventeen-year-old Breanna's role in her large family, and heaven forbid she put a toe out of line. Until one night of shockingly un-Breanna-like behavior puts her into a vicious cyber-bully's line of fire—and brings fellow senior Thomas "Razor" Turner into her life.

Razor lives for the Reign of Terror motorcycle club, and good girls like Breanna just don't belong. But when he learns she's being blackmailed over a compromising picture of the two of them—a picture that turns one unexpected and beautiful moment into ugliness—he knows it's time to step outside the rules.

And so they make a pact: he'll help her track down her blackmailer, and in return she'll help him seek answers to the mystery that's haunted him—one that not even his club brothers have been willing to discuss. But the more time they spend together, the more their feelings grow. And suddenly they're both walking the edge of discovering who they really are, what they want, and where they're going from here.


After reading and loving the first book in this series, Nowhere But Here I was really excited to read Razor's story. Mainly because he was a very mysterious character that seemed to hide a lot of his personality behind being snarky and I really wanted to know more about him and why he acted that way.

I'll be starting this off by saying that this wasn't my favourite Katie McGarry novel, however, it's still a great, entertaining read that kept me glued to the pages. I felt sad for Breanna because she's intelligent and way mature for her age and being told she couldn't go for her dreams because no one would be there to look out for her younger siblings. Especially when her siblings treated her so horribly and her parents barely took the time to get to know the Breanna she was now. Her relationship with Razor is looked against in a bad way due to the reputation of the Motorcycle club but if anything I think Breanna's parents should have been thankful for Razor. He brought her out of her shell and she was finally being true to herself. And that reminded me of Rachel when she met Isaiah in Crash Into You.

Which leads me onto another thing I massively love about Katie McGarry's stories: her characters are always stripped back, raw and honest with inner turmoil going on. Some of the scenes in this book left me shocked, mouth wide open. Especially, when Razor was seeking out answers to his mother's death, and everything seemed to point to the Reign of Terror. I just didn't know who was telling the truth. Why people were keeping their mouths shut?

I really liked the chapters where Oz and Emily appeared. I loved them so much and they're also one of my favourite book couples. The ending in Nowhere But Here was a little rushed for my liking, however, I really appreciated the ending for Razor in this story. It was beautiful and showed a lot of significance for both Razor and Olivia. It had a lot of meaning.

Overall this is another good book in this series, I'm excited to see what will happen in the third - and possibly final book - of the series, Long Way Home. I love Chevy and Violet so I'm excited to be able to see a little into their past.