REVIEW | The Chaos of Standing Still by Jessica Brody

There’s something about being stranded in a place that reveals the truth. Or as Troy Benson says:

Any system, if left unattended or isolated, will eventually result in entropy. Or chaos.

That is what The Chaos of Standing Still revolves around. The premise of the whole book is rather simple. A girl, stranded at an airport, meets strangers by chance that help her move forward in her life. Chaos gave me strong The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight vibes at first. It’s definitely to do with the girl meets boy at airport scenario and them being forced into a certain area together. In Statistical, that’s the plane but Chaos gives it’s Continue reading “REVIEW | The Chaos of Standing Still by Jessica Brody”

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Renegades by Marissa Meyer | Cress is still my Meyer Peak

Renegades (Renegades, #1)Secret Identities. Extraordinary Powers. She wants vengeance. He wants justice.

The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies—humans with extraordinary abilities—who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone…except the villains they once overthrew.

Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice—and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.

The Good

  • THE FREAKING WORLD BUILDING. YES MARISSA MEYER, YOU SHOW EM HOW IT’S DONE! From the underground Anarchists to the Renegade government squads, I would want to see this world.
  • I’m a sucker for big battle scenes and that last one is so good. I could hear the surging music playing in the background.
  • Honestly, that whole last scene redeemed Renegades for me, no joke I probably wouldn’t read the next one otherwise.

The Bad

  • Feels like its a really long book when it’s not. Maybe it was because I read half then stopped for a while but I just feel like it dragged in the middle. It really does play out to be a long intro to the series which I don’t mind but I feel like it should be able to stand alone too.
  • I’m kinda scared to say this because I know a lot of people like the book for this reason but… it’s kind of preachy with its whole humans must be the ones to save humans not superhero. The first time that came up I agreed and it gave the book a certain edge. The second time, ok she’s reinforcing that message. And then it happened again… and again. Ok, I get it!
  • The lack of direction, especially in the plot. Nothing was really set up for the next book.

The Feels

  • The cliffhanger kills me.
  • PRETTY COVER
  • Maybe I’ll never love anything as much as the Lunar Chronicles, especially Cress. That’s just sad to me though 😦
  • Adrian liking Nova but he hates Nightmare who is Nova who hates the Sentinel but kind of likes Adrian who is the Sentinel. OMG just imagine when they find out omg betrayal, angst!! There’s just something about this romance that triggers my fangirl!

Rating: 3/5 stars | It’s good but it felt aimless and preachy at some points.

What did you think of Renegades? Did it measure up to Lunar Chronicles for you?

10 Second Reviews (because I’m lazy)

Hi, I’m not dead! Literally haven’t posted in over 2 weeks but I’ve got a couple of books to review. Since I’m in a very lazy mood I’m going to do 10 second reviews. You don’t want me rambling either so win win XD

The Way to Game the Walk of Fame | Jenn P. Ngyuen 

The Way to Game the Walk of ShameTaylor Simmons is screwed.

Things were hard enough when her single-minded dedication to her studies earned her the reputation of being an Ice Queen, but after getting drunk at a party and waking up next to bad boy surfer Evan McKinley, the entire school seems intent on tearing Taylor down with mockery and gossip.

Desperate to salvage her reputation, Taylor persuades Evan to pretend they’re in a serious romantic relationship. After all, it’s better to be the girl who tames the wild surfer than just another notch on his surfboard.

Cute, fluffy fun. It’s your typical YA contemporary. Honestly, it’s pretty forgettable but it’s good if you’re looking for some filler stuff.

3.5

Wanderlost | Jen Malone

WanderlostNot all those who wander are lost, but Aubree Sadler most definitely is on this novel’s whirlwind trip through Europe.

Aubree can’t think of a better place to be than in perfectly boring Ohio, and she’s ready for a relaxing summer. But when her older sister, Elizabeth, gets into real trouble, Aubree is talked into taking over Elizabeth’s summer job, leading a group of senior citizens on a bus tour through Europe.

Aubree doesn’t even make it to the first stop in Amsterdam before their perfect plan unravels, leaving her with no phone, no carefully prepared binder full of helpful facts, and an unexpected guest: the tour company owner’s son, Sam. Considering she’s pretending to be Elizabeth, she absolutely shouldn’t fall for him, but she can’t help it, especially with the most romantic European cities as the backdrop for their love story.

But her relationship with Sam is threatening to ruin her relationship with her sister, and she feels like she’s letting both of them down. Aubree knows this trip may show her who she really is—she just hopes she likes where she ends up.

DAMN THAT’S HOW YOU CONTEMPORARY! It gave me serious Anna and the French Kiss vibes with the travelling. Loved the romance and loved Aubree’s growth so much. It was so perfect for Aubree’s adventure to end that way.

4.5

Tone Deaf | Olivia Rivers

Tone DeafHis world is music. Her world is silent.

Ali Collins was a child prodigy destined to become one of the greatest musicians of the twenty-first century—until she was diagnosed with a life-changing brain tumor. Now, at seventeen, Ali lives in a soundless world where she gets by with American Sign Language and lip-reading. She’s a constant disappointment to her father, a retired cop fighting his own demons, and the bruises are getting harder to hide.

When Ali accidentally wins a backstage tour with the chart-topping band Tone Deaf, she’s swept back into the world of music. Jace Beckett, the nineteen-year-old lead singer of the band, has a reputation. He’s a jerk and a player, and Ali wants nothing to do with him. But there’s more to Jace than the tabloids let on. When Jace notices Ali’s bruises and offers to help her escape to New York, Ali can’t turn down the chance at freedom and a fresh start. Soon she’s traveling cross-country, hidden away in Jace’s RV as the band finishes their nationwide tour. With the help of Jace, Ali sets out to reboot her life and rediscover the music she once loved.

Concept is a 10 but execution is more around the 4-5 range. It needed more depth, more development but it was a very short book. If there was an extra 100 pages maybe?

3

And if you were wondering what I was up to instead of actually posting:

Recap of my past 2 weeks

  • English essay crisis
  • Newfound obsession with Ariana Grande’s new album because her voice is amazing
  • Mental crisis over how much I sit in a day (it has to be over 22 hours at least)

So that’s all from me right now! I’m really stuck on what to read next. Anyone got any recommendations?

Wild Swans by Jessica Spotwood

The summer before Ivy’s senior year is going to be golden; all bonfires, barbeques, and spending time with her best friends. For once, she will just get to be. No summer classes, none of Granddad’s intense expectations to live up to the family name. For generations, the Milbourn women have lead extraordinary lives—and died young and tragically. Granddad calls it a legacy, but Ivy considers it a curse. Why else would her mother have run off and abandoned her as a child?

But when her mother unexpectedly returns home with two young daughters in tow, all of the stories Ivy wove to protect her heart start to unravel. The very people she once trusted now speak in lies. And all of Ivy’s ambition and determination cannot defend her against the secrets of the Milbourn past….

Goodreads

The short version:  Just like Ivy, this book needed something special about it to become extraordinary… unfortunately it did not.

I wish I felt that way about something. Consumed by it.

Forget all the special one tropes you’ve read in YA because Wild Swans gives you Ivy, a girl born into a family of extraordinary women with extraordinary talents. Her grandfather has high standards for her, building her up for greatness but she just hasn’t found her calling yet. It’s very relatable to me and I think it will be to a lot of teenagers, almost out of high school but not quite. We’re all expected to have our lives set out before we are even 20 but that’s a lot of pressure for a major life decision.

It took me a few false starts but once I got into Wild Swans I could not put it down. If you’re friends with me on Goodreads you can see that I spent a month reading this XD I really enjoyed reading the middle bit of the book, it became so addictive to read. But the ending…it was like a storm that kept building and building and then suddenly its all sunny skies. WHAT THE HELL? Book, you promised me one thing and that was a good ending but you didn’t give me that!

Although the concept was good I felt like the characters themselves were really frustrating. It wasn’t just the really pushy grandfather but it was more Ivy herself. She was just so placid and obedient that it drove me crazy. She doesn’t like to push the boundaries and as the protaganist that meant that the plot was lacking that extra something. The only character I kind of liked was Erica, Ivy’s mum, who kicked the drama right up. She was a very interesting character who’d gone through the same experiences as Ivy but turned out so different. I would’ve really liked to see her POV because it would’ve had a bit of spark at least.

3

Big thanks to the publisher for sending me a review copy via Netgalley. 

Dorothy Must Die | Love the dress, hate her

Goodreads | Author 
I didn’t ask for any of this. I didn’t ask to be some kind of hero.

But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado – taking you with it – you have no choice but to go along, you know?

Sure, I’ve read the books. I’ve seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little bluebirds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can’t be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There’s still a yellow brick road – but even that’s crumbling.

What happened? Dorothy.

They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe.

My name is Amy Gumm – and I’m the other girl from Kansas.

I’ve been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.

I’ve been trained to fight.

And I have a mission.

My thoughts in one picture:

Oh Dorothy Must Die, you started off so well with you being a dark, twisted retelling of Wizard of Oz and descriptions so vivid I kind of wished I was in the book. I was even willing to overlook how annoying Amy was but no, it was not meant to be.

Do you ever get this feeling when you’re reading a book that you’ve read this before? Dorothy Must Die was like that… but at the same time not. I can pinpoint exactly what I hated so much about this book which doesn’t happen often. I’m really torn about this book because it’s got such a great world and an amazing concept but the main characters just made me so angry.

Amy Gumm is not special at all in book terms. It’s like she was written by someone holding a checklist all like “Ok so bad parents, check. Angst from troubled childhood, check. Is a giant ass screw the system person, check. Has some weird coloured hair, check”. HOW MUCH MORE TROPE CAN YOU SHOVE INTO A SINGLE CHARACTER??

“No one does this right away, not even me,” Nox said quietly. “You have power”

Oh yeah, I forgot about the special one trope. It’s not like it’s shoved into my throat every second book.

The romance was really sad and I don’t mean sad like in The Fault in Our Stars, I mean sad because it should’ve had so much more. I don’t normally mind instalove but in Dorothy it’s freaking crazy. Amy and Nox literally don’t even talk more than a couple of sentences and suddenly, they’re a couple. There was no chemistry, no romantic buildup just a makeover. A literal spit take scene included. It’s also worth mentioning that this is the bar for most of the character development in the book. We meet the character, we get a few lines out of them and then they’re killed off because who knows and who cares 😀

If that wasn’t enough disappointment, [spoiler]AMY FUCKING SCREWS UP AND DOROTHY DOESN’T DIE. THE BOOK IS FUCKING CALLED DOROTHY MUST DIE, SO WHY DOESN’T SHE???? [end spoiler] It made the ending so anticlimatic and it was pretty funny how much shit went down in the last chapter. It was as if it was a setup for the sequel…

Sidenote: I got around to researching it and turns out it might be picked up by CW. I was not surprised. Dorothy is very CW material, by that I mean it just emanates YA from its pores.

TL;DR: Basically, good world building does not work when inhabited by shitty characters

2.5


So have you read Dorothy Must Die? What were your thoughts (especially on that stupid ending)? By the way, is the sequel any good because I want to know what happens but I honestly don’t think I can stand another book of Amy. Anyways, let me know 😀