I'm not sure how familiar you all are with this novel, but it is pretty big in Australia and is generally read in year 11 or 12 as a relationships or belonging text. I didn't get a chance to read it though as it was only studied in general English and I did advanced and got to read Frankenstein instead (yay me *cough*). But when I saw it in the list of audio books, I decided to download it for my trip back to uni.
It is about 17 year old Josephine who is of Italian descent and faces all the adversity we must struggle through in our teen years; love, family, betrayal, school, loss, peer pressure, responsibility, yackity yackity yack... Josie finds so much out about herself and her family that she was blinded to before. It is her journey from obnoxious teen to understanding young adult. I thoroughly enjoyed it (and cursed my teachers for making us read ol' Franky instead).
Recommended If: You'd like to learn a little of Italian/Australian culture and relive your high school years.
This book was lovely! It was fresh, exotic and all around enjoyable. The story starts in London, 1910, where orphaned girl Maia begins the journey to her only remaining relatives in the Amazon rainforest, accompanied by their new governess, Miss Minton. Maia meets Clovis, an actor, along the way and is excited to see the incredible river Minty has told her so much about. However, upon arriving, Maia realises all her fantasies about her new family were dead wrong and she finds herself trapped physically and emotionally until she meets Fin. Her friendships with Clovis and Fin, two very different boys create the adventure of a life time, where they attempt to all save themselves from their horrid fates.
Journey to the River Sea is a breath of fresh air that teaches the reader not only about friendship, courage and belonging, but also a number of incredible facts about the Amazon. The author sets the scene perfectly and I felt at times as though I too was in the incredible forest of life.
Recommended If: You need a happy ending
Note: Audience intended is young teen, and most of the characters are just that (but still has the depth needed)
I got four chapters into this novel and actually put it back in my book shelf. I didn't like Bella's character and I thought the story line was so bland and stretched out. However, after thinking about it, I realised that most of my reviews have been me gushing about how good this and that book is and that it might be nice to hear me whinge about a book for a change. And, what would you know... I actually started to like it a little...
The story follows 33 year old Bella who lost her partner in a workplace accident two years back. She is looking simply for a hookup and has no interest in falling in love again. Along comes Will; 37, charming and totes into her (what?). Things progress quickly and after meeting each others families, Bella pushes him away because she doesn't want to get hurt again.
I mean, I feel for Bella. Losing Patrick completely changed her and her life and I can definitely relate. But Bella becomes so self absorbed and takes all her problems out on everyone else. She has a huge chip on her shoulder and acts as if the world owes her. Sure, this is something everyone goes through I know, but it just irritates me that though other characters in the book are suffering (and she knows they are) she doesn't care, but expects them to care about her. The other characters are okay; Will is a total sweetheart! The story line though just dragged on and found myself skimming quite a lot.
Recommended If: You are bored in the airport and have nothing better to do...
I didn't specifically 'read' this book, but rather listened. It is an audio book that I downloaded onto my phone through my local library's app so I could listen while I washed windows and cleaned out our hall (junk) cupboard. I chose it because I am a huge fan of the Tomorrow series by John Marsden.
The story was really nice. It was about a 14/15 year old girl who has spent the last year in the hospital and later psychiatric hospital after something horrible happens to her. She is then sent by her mother to a boarding school as to try and 'help' her, as she does not speak. It's not that she cannot speak, more that she doesn't want to. At the school everyone is given a journal that they must use and the girl uses it to tell the book, if that makes sense... She is a quiet observer who is both intelligent and sensitive. Even though she doesn't speak, she makes friends with her dorm mates and even teachers, leading to her doing something she never thought she would have the courage to.
You may have realised that I haven't stated her name; that is because you literally do not find it out until the last line... or else I missed it. It was a simple novel that had themes of friendship, adversity and forgiveness. The audience is most likely young teens and therefore it lacked some depth, but was a thoroughly enjoyable book. Also, Aussie author and setting made me very happy. :)
Recommended If: You have book hangover and need something nice and soft to help soothe your soul of the previous book you read.
I cannot, will not get over how incredibly incredible this book is! It is phenomenally written and fully consuming! I kept seeing it at the book fair and took that as a sign that it was meant to be mine and oh boy am I glad I added it to my box. The story is about a three year old who goes missing in 1985 and told from POVs of Mother Beth and Brother Vincent. It is so honest and in depth, all those details, just superb! Mitchard explores the changes and emotions that the family endures, plus the investigation into his disappearance for nine years before something happens that changes their lives fully again. Is it for the better? That is what they must figure out. The characters are all uber in depth and so realistic that you'll bond with them; cry when do and rejoice when they do. This novel doesn't miss a beat and had me hooked from page one to page 434. It is not a book that can be read lightly or sparingly. It will change you.
Recommended If: You need something that will make you rethink everything.
Warning: It will leave you breathless to the very end.
This book came from the book fair. It is a classic and I have always been interested in reading it. The copy I got has illustrations throughout it and I LOVE this!! It gave it such a classic and unique feel. The story follows four sisters; Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy growing up during the 1800s in America. There are strong themes of family, friendship, morals, love and loss. I kind of knew what happened thanks to Joey from Friends but I was still nicely (mostly) surprised at the delicacy and moments in this novel. Definitely a must read!
I was so excited when I found Bridge to Terrabithia amongst the treasures at the book fair. I read it when I was in year eight or nine I think and LOVED it! The movie is also lovely. The book is a lot smaller than I remember and clearly a children's book over young adult. It was a bit shallow, in content, not emotion and I would have liked it to go more in depth but I understand why it didn't. I mean I get that it's a children's book and I am not a child... *sad face*
Anyhowzers, for those who haven't read the book or seen the movie (it stars J-Hutch and Anna Sophia Robb as young whipper snappers). It is about a ten year old boy, Jesse who lives with his four sisters, mum and a dad who is distant and not at all loving (so he thinks). His life is turned upside down in a good way when neighbours move into the next farm along with a daughter, Leslie. Leslie is not your typical ten year old girl and her parents' alternative ways result in her being excluded and whispered about at school. Jesse finds himself befriending her, resulting in his life changing forever. Leslie and Jesse create their own secret, magical land called Terrabithia where they rule as King and Queen and fight off giants and pay homage to the tree spirits.
A true and kind hearted book that speaks of the amazing benefits and consequences of friendship with an ending you won't see coming.
I got this book at the same time as Lock and Key. I hadn't previously read it but hoped that as I had loved Lock and Key which is also by Dessen that I would enjoy this one. And I did.
It was a beautiful book about friendship, family and not judging a book by its cover.
Sixteen year old Annabel had it all, a loving family, cool friends, popularity and a modeling career. Well that is what it looks like from the outside. The reality is a little more fragile. Annabel finds herself coming back after Summer break an entirely different person, but no one sees it or if they do she pretends she is fine. Until Owen that is. He is a music obsessed honest guy with issues of his own, but he sees Annabel for what she is and knows she is hiding something. Something no one knows, something she cannot even think about. Will she find the courage to let the new her be and deal with the past she is trying to hide? And will her family ever understand that she too has her own problems?
Recommended If: You've ever judged a book by it's cover
I dragged out reading this book so that I was able to take in every little detail I could. And boy did I ever. This is the final book in the series and the oh did it deliver! The book is pretty big, nearly double the size of the others. Love, loss and life were the main essences of the story. We met some new characters and were reconnected with some old. I am so very happy with the ending, especially since another series by Clare is in the process of being written. It will be based around the Las Angeles Institute characters who were children in this book. It is going to be incredible. *squeels like a child* It seems that I have felt every single emotion through the process of reading this book, and not just subtle emotions, but having every fibre of myself on fire with them. I tend to pick up on story lines pretty well and it is rare for me to be surprised, but as always, Clare had me sitting on the edge of my seat (bed) and having to put the book down for a few moments while I processed the intense moments I was shocked by. It wasn't predictable or shallow, but just amazing as every other of Clare's stories. She truly isn't an author, but an artist and I fawn in appreciation and admiration at her feet.