Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index by Julie Israel

31123261Title: Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index

Author: Julie Israel

Publisher + date: Penguin Random House UK Children’s / 01 Jun 2017

Rating: ★★★

genre: YA, Romance

Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a honest review, thank you!

“When he catches me, and we roll on our backs toward the star-filled sky, I do not see the diamonds, the glittering shards that have shone there for billions of years, but the blue-black canopy between them. I see it and think of my watercolors, of carving Bristol from linoleum, of Polaris-with a twang, of Camie’s hand in them all, of the thousand ways she’ll never see her touch unfold-and somehow recognize it’s this very darkness, the cutouts, the envelope of holes that makes the stars so sharp and beautiful. All that absence isn’t negative space.”

Synopsis

It’s been sixty-five days since the accident that killed Juniper’s sister, and ripped Juniper’s world apart.

Then she finds the love letter: written by Camilla on the day of the accident, addressed mysteriously to “You,” but never sent. Desperate to learn You’s identity and deliver the message, Juniper starts to investigate.

Until she loses something. A card from her Happiness Index: a ritual started by sunny Camie for logging positives each day. It’s what’s been holding Juniper together since her death – but a lost card only widens the hole she left behind. And this particular card contains Juniper’s own dark secret: a memory she can’t let anyone else find out.

The search for You and her card take Juniper to even less expected places, and as she connects with those whose secrets she upturns in the effort, she may just find the means to make peace with her own.

This is a smart, funny, poignant book guaranteed to make you laugh and cry – and maybe even take notes.

What I think of it

I’m not going to say I loved it as I didn’t but it was okay.

I kinda feel like it wasn’t anything special, don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the romance a lot and everything but it lacked a good story line which made this book less interesting.

It’s a great book to read in the summer when you’re on holiday and want something light to read. The characters are very nice (none annoyed me) but I do have to warn that one character has a physically abusive parent and another has thoughts of suicide.

I must say that the main character, Juniper Lemon (What a weird name though) has a great personality and her heart on the right place. I loved the fact that she has quite a few flaws. Despite the fact you can feel her sadness on many times I can say this book is a very optimistic and hopeful story.

I only regret the lacking story line that doesn’t make me want to reread it, which is why I could only rate it 3 stars.


Céline. ❤

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Lots of Harry Potter news!!

This month we were quite lucky to get some new updates about the world of Harry Potter, I decided to make a list of all!

  • Fantastic Beasts and where to find them Illustrated edition

    I kinda screamed a bit when I saw the most beautiful cover for this book, I honestly think this will be one of the most beautiful illustrated editions ever. The artwork is made by Olivia Lomenech Gill. This beautiful edition of Fantastic beasts will be released on 7 November 2017 published by Bloomsbury.
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  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Illustrated edition) has been brought to life in kindle form!

    On 5 September this amazing kindle edition will be released and I’m honestly really fricking excited about this because.. This edition will actually make the illustrations.. MOVE! Yes you have read this well, it will actually move just like the newspapers in the books/films (weren’t we all jealous about this) so we will get a bit of the wizarding reading experience too (screams). Note that you need kindle motion for this it’s compatible on Fire tablets and the free Kindle app for iOS and Android.

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  • 2 new books about the world of Harry Potter

    We are getting blessed with 2 (!) new books about the world of Harry Potter later this year, in October. I say the world of Harry Potter as it’s not about Harry himself. First of all, we are getting ‘Harry Potter: A history of magic’ it “promises to take readers on a fascinating journey through the subjects studied at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry – from Alchemy and Potions classes through to Herbology and Care of Magical Creatures.” This book was mentioned several times in the books
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    BUT we are also very lucky to get ‘Harry Potter: A Journey Through the History of Magic’ which is “packed with unseen sketches and manuscript pages from J.K. Rowling, magical illustrations from Jim Kay and weird, wonderful and inspiring artifacts that have been magically released from the archives at the British Library.”
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    Also to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the series J.K Rowling announced there will be a Harry Potter exhibit about the history of magic which will be featured at the British library (20 October 2017 – 28 February 2018) you can get tickets HERE be quick tickets are selling quickly!!


Céline. ❤

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Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s stone by J.K. Rowling

32196033Title: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

Author: J.K. Rowling

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

Rating: ★★★★★

genre: Fantasy, YA

 

 

“To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.”

Synopsis

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

What I think of it

I remember reading this series for the first time when I was about 10 years old. I heard everyone talking about the films and how much they loved it. I have to admit that I started watching the films first before reading the books (which I still kinda regret). So I started with the first book and it took me about a month to finish them all.

I think it’s needless to say that I absolutely loved the book, I think it was the 4th time I’ve read it and I honestly will never get enough of it. It’s actually more fun to reread it as half of the time you’re just thinking “you have no idea what’s still coming up, Harry”.. 

giphy

The fun part about this special anniversary book (I’m a Hufflepuff) is that there’s so much information about your house and about the people that were in the house! So if you already own the series it’s really worth it to buy this copy as well.

Harry Potter helped me through some shitty period in my childhood, whenever I wanted to escape reality I was reading the books. I’m really thankful the world of Hogwarts exists (I’m still waiting for my letter to arrive)


Céline ❤

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Farewell Tour of a Terminal Optimist by John Young

35428869Title: Farewell Tour of a Terminal Optimist

Author: John Young

Publisher + date: Floris Books / September 15th 2017

Rating: ★★★★

Genre: YA

Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a honest review, thank you!

 

Synopsis

Quick-witted, sharp-tongued Connor Lambert won’t take it any longer: the bullying, the secrets, the sympathy. He’s been dying from cancer for years, but he’s not dead yet. He’s going down fighting.

Forming an unlikely friendship with fellow juvenile delinquent Skeates, the pair stage a break out and set off on a crazy tour across Scotland — dodging the police, joy riding and extreme partying — to find Connor’s dad, an inmate at Shotts prison.

But Connor’s left two things behind — the medication he needs to keep him alive, and the girl who makes living bearable.

A fresh and bold debut novel full of heart, guts and raw emotion. Farewell Tour of a Terminal Optimist is a brilliantly funny, thrilling exploration of friendship, identity and mortality populated with witty, sharply drawn characters.

What I think of it

This is really a very nice book to read while you’re on vacation.
It’s a light read which will make you laugh out loud but will also make you tear up a bit because after all it’s about a dying teen (and to be honest it’s not possible to not like him).

The writing in general is great, no hard words so readable for any age.

The characters are very interesting and unique, which made the book fun to read. unfortunately the plot is a bit unrealistic & rushed over which made me enjoying the book less.

I do recommend this book to whoever wants to have a fun book to read and doesn’t mind to tear up now and then and trust me if you have a heart, you absolutely will tear up.


Céline. ❤

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Unboxing Owlcrate: Comic explosion!

Another month means a new Owlcrate box!
I was quite excited about this box as I knew there would be some great stuff inside it, unfortunately I got spoiled on Instagram before I received the box yet I was very happy when it finally arrived 😀

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This month’s box had a Funko pop inside! There were 7 different characters you had the chance to get, I was lucky enough to get.. Harley Quinn! I was kinda hoping to get her or Loki so I literally did a little scream and happy dance when I saw her in my box

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I loved the goodies! There’s a comic attack pen from Ooly with 6 different colors of ink which is super easy to use and it writes well! An awesome zipper pull created by Owlcrate itself. A super cute mini candle by Dio Candle Company, inspired by Wonder woman’s tropical island, smells delicious! Last but not least there were also some very tasty coffee candies from Käfe! Zing!

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We also got a first chapter sampler of a brand new comic AFAR by Image Comics! I’ve read it and I loved it, I’m definitely going to buy myself that comic! There’s also an exclusive art piece included in the box created by Francesca Zappia.

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This month’s book is Eliza and her monsters which is Francesca Zappia’s new book! She’s also the author of Made you up. You can read the synopsis of Eliza and her monsters here, it’s definitely worth to read. I really wanted to read that book so I was quite happy when I saw it in the box. It also included a signed bookplate and a letter!

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So here you go, this was this month’s Owlcrate unboxing!
Have you got the box and what do you think of it?

Next month’s theme is…. Make it out alive!

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Smoke signals (Burn this) by Ashley Dun

18697758_10211142576138070_1960561965_oTitle: Smoke signals (Burn this)

Author: Ashley Dun

Publisher: Secret Midnight Press

Rating: ★★★★★

Genre: Poetry

 

 

 

“One year has passed
since you buried yourself in
my soul
made a home underneath my skin
and even though you’re gone
you’ve left behind pieces of your
shrapnel from the war and
it hurts when I move in a certain way
your remnants dig into my flesh
and a flash
a picture of you blinds me and
I’m broken down again
you left your pieces and
you took some of mine with
you and
I will never be the same”

Synopsis

This is a chronicle of life, seasons, heartbreak, and healing. Poems to make you feel less alone, loved, understood. The light fades and sometimes seems so far away, but spring will always come. The sun is always just behind the clouds. We hold on together and these words create the rope that can lift us out of the hole that so easily catches us. Grab on. Let it lift you. (Source + buy here)

What I think of it

This is definitely one of the best poetry books I have read, it’s absolutely wonderful.

It’s in 4 parts: “the fire”, “the falling”, “the dark” and “the rebirth”. I enjoyed all four but I think “the falling” was my favourite. The poems are mostly about being in love and heartbreak but also about mental health, letting go and healing. I love how all poems had personal meanings and were individual but at the same time they’re all connected to each other and anyone could relate to some of them. As said in the synopsis “Poems to make you feel less alone, loved, understood” they really do make you feel less alone and makes you understand that even if your heart is broken, you will heal no matter what.

I met Ashley during a Vesperteen house concert in Belgium but unfortunately I didn’t had the chance to read her book before. I must say that she’s an absolute sweetheart and when you have read the poems and then see how she is in person you just know she has a heart full of love.

I totally recommend this poetry book, if you have read Rupi Kaur’s book Milk and Honey then I promise you you’ll absolutely love this one as well.


Céline. ❤

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Rarity from the hollow by Robert Eggleton

32993259Title: Rarity from the hollow

Author: Robert Eggleton

Publisher: Dog Horn

Rating: ★★★★

Genre: Adult fiction, child abuse

Review copy provided by the author, Thank you!

 

 

“Complaining is like sitting in a rocking chair.
You can get lots of motion, but you ain’t going anywhere.”

Synopsis

Lacy Dawn’s father relives the Gulf War, her mother’s teeth are rotting out, and her best friend is murdered by the meanest daddy on Earth. Life in The Hollow isn’t great. But Lacy has one advantage — she’s been befriended by a semi-organic, semi-robot who works with her to cure her parents. He wants something in exchange, though. It’s up to her to save the Universe.

Will Lacy Dawn’s predisposition, education, and magic be enough for her to save the Universe, Earth, and, most importantly, protect her own family?

Rarity from the Hollow is adult literary science fiction filled with tragedy, comedy and satire. It is a children’s story for adults, not for the prudish, faint of heart, or easily offended.

What I think of it

This is definitely an adults book, it has explicit sexual scenes and child abuse (sexual also). This is normally not a book I would pick up as I have been abused as a child as well and I try to avoid books/films that has anything to do with it. But when the author messaged me with a review request of his book and hearing the whole meaning behind this book, I couldn’t say no.

So I’ve read it once.. correction, I’ve read it twice.

I enjoyed the book so much that a few months after reading it I just picked it up again. I must say it’s a hard one to read, some scenes are really explicit and it reminded me of stuff in the past but somehow it also made me feel less alone. It made me realize that there are so many children in this world getting abused, going through the stuff I have been through.

The first time I read it, it took me a while to get into it. The first few chapters are quite confusing and you don’t really know what’s happening but the more you get into it the better it gets. The fact that there’s sci-fi/fantasy in it (such as genderless alien DotCom) kinda makes the book easier to read, less heavy on some moments.

I wasn’t sure what rating I should give this book, as much as I wanted to give it 5 stars I didn’t as to me it was still really heavy and hard to read on some moments as it took me right back to my past.

I want to thank the author for sending me a copy of his book. I highly recommend this book to anyone who’s 18+ but do keep in mind it’s a very heavy book to read yet so worth it.

you can buy the book here

Half of author proceeds are donated to the prevention of child maltreatment. http://www.childhswv.org/


Céline. ❤

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The princess saves herself in this one by Amanda Lovelace

30075802Author: Amanda Lovelace

Title: The princess saves herself in this one

Publisher: CreateSpace

Rating: ★★

Genre: Poetry

 

 

“once upon a time,
the princess rose from the ashes her dragon lovers made of her
& crowned herself the mother-fucking queen of herself”

Synopsis

“Ah, life- the thing that happens to us while we’re off somewhere else blowing on dandelions & wishing ourselves into the pages of our favorite fairy tales.”

A poetry collection divided into four different parts: the princess, the damsel, the queen, & you. the princess, the damsel, & the queen piece together the life of the author in three stages, while you serves as a note to the reader & all of humankind. Explores life & all of its love, loss, grief, healing, empowerment, & inspirations.

What I think of it

I did like the fact that the poems are very personal and honest and makes you relate to some but hitting space after every word doesn’t make it poetry. I don’t want to sound awful as I know the author has put a lot into this book and it’s very personal to her and I do agree that this is a beautiful book but it’s not a poetry book, I see it more as creative writing.

Some poems are very heavy, very personal which made me sometimes quite uncomfortable to read (I don’t know why, maybe because I could relate to it) but then again others were very light and easy. You can tell that the author poured her heart into this book.

Overall it was okay but I won’t pick it up again


Céline. ❤

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Stupid flowers by Brice Maiurro

unnamedAuthor: Brice Maiurro

Title: Stupid flowers

Publisher: Punch Drunk Press Ltd.

Rating: ★★★

Genre: Poetry

Review copy provided by Brice Maiurro in exchange for a honest review, thank you!

 

do not trust
anyone
that you
have not seen
naked.

actually

strike that.

do not trust
anyone.

Synopsis

Poetry. Brice Maiurro is a poet out of Denver, Colorado who performs regularly at events throughout the front range. His poems have previously been featured in various places including the Denver Post, Birdy Magazine and Suspect Press. In his first collection, Brice Maiurro takes us poem by poem through different life experiences ranging from the mundane to the divine, the funny and the dark. (Source)

What I think of it

I haven’t been into poetry until a few months ago and I must say I do not like every kind of poetry.

I have mixed feelings about this book.

I enjoyed the poems in general, some made me laugh, others were more serious and actually made you think about things in life. But then again some were just so long and kinda lost my concentration halfway through. I think I will reread this book at some point in my life again and maybe I’ll appreciate it more. I totally recommend this book if you have read and enjoyed all sorts of poetry before.

On a side note: The author is an absolute sweetheart, very kind.


Céline. ❤

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Words on bathroom walls by Julia Walton

25695640Author: Julia Walton

Title: Words on bathroom walls

Publisher + date: July 4th 2017 by Random House Books for Young Readers

Rating: ★★★★★ (all the stars of the universe)

Genre: YA, mental health

Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a honest review, thank you!

“You can’t possibly know what it means to doubt everything.”

Synopsis

Fans of More Happy Than Not, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and It’s Kind of a Funny Story will cheer for Adam as he struggles with schizophrenia in this brilliantly honest and unexpectedly funny debut.

Adam has just been diagnosed with schizophrenia. He sees and hears people who aren’t there: Rebecca, a beautiful girl who understands him; the Mob Boss, who harasses him; and Jason, the naked guy who’s unfailingly polite. It should be easy to separate the real from the not real, but Adam can’t.

Still, there’s hope. As Adam starts fresh at a new school, he begins a drug trial that helps him ignore his visions. Suddenly everything seems possible, even love. When he meets Maya, a fiercely intelligent girl, he desperately wants to be the great guy that she thinks he is. But then the miracle drug begins to fail, and Adam will do anything to keep Maya from discovering his secret. (Source)

What I think of it

Ladies and gentlemen I want to present you all my new favourite book.

Words on bathroom walls tells the story of Adam who has schizophrenia and is taking the experimental medication ToZaPrex to help him control his mental illness. On top of this he’s starting a new school where he tries to hide his illness as much as he can. He’s also seeing a therapist but Adam refuses to talk so instead he writes letters.

I must say I had my doubts before starting this book. I have tried to read so many books about it or that handles the mental illness yet they’re never any good, or they’re just very disrespectful.

But this book is just perfect. I used to have a friend with schizo who unfortunately took his own life and this book gives you a proper look on how living with schizophrenia is like and what people with it have to go through everyday.

If you want to know more about what it is like to live with schizophrenia then I totally recommend you to read this wonderful book. If I had the money I would buy a million copies and give them away, this is a very important book.

As someone who had a friend with schizophrenia I’d like to thank the author,
thank you for writing a book that handles schizophrenia in a respectful way.


Céline. ❤

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