14-year-old Zoe reviews the books she likes to read. Well-written and honest, Zoe offers a balanced opinion by sharing a complete analysis of the story that includes what worked for her, and what didn't. The truth is, Zoe hasn't met a book she didn't like, but she likes some more than others. This is a great site for teens to find peer to peer recommendations, and an insightful read for parents who just want to know what their kids are reading.
Servants of the Storm by Delilah S. Dawson
A year ago Hurricane Josephine swept through Savannah, Georgia, leaving behind nothing but death and destruction — and taking the life of Dovey's best friend, Carly. Since that night, Dovey has been in a medicated haze, numb to everything around her.But recently she's started to believe she's seeing things that can't be real ... including Carly at their favorite cafe. Determined to learn the truth, Dovey stops taking her pills. And the world that opens up to her is unlike anything she could have imagined.As Dovey slips deeper into the shadowy corners of Savannah — where the dark and horrifying secrets lurk — she learns that the storm that destroyed her city and stole her friend was much more than a force of nature. And now the sinister beings truly responsible are out to finish what they started.Dovey's running out of time and torn between two paths. Will she trust her childhood friend Baker, who can't see the threatening darkness but promises to never give up on Dovey and Carly? Or will she plot with the sexy stranger, Isaac, who offers all the answers — for a price? Soon Dovey realizes that the danger closing in has little to do with Carly ... and everything to do with Dovey herself.
I cannot get Servants of the Storm out of my head. As I’m writing this review (8 months before you will see it), all I can think about is Servants of the Storm. And I read it a month ago. This story, this world, these characters will hold on to you and not let you go. Every single character in Servants of the Storm is electrifying. I long to read more about them, and I’m really hoping that at some point down the road, I’ll get to. Delilah S. Dawson is a fan-freaking-tastic writer and I just want to sing her praise from the rooftops.
I loved Dovey. I loved the way she saw the world and the way she approached most of her challenges, and most of all I loved her determination. Dovey is an extremely motivated character and it was genuinely fun to follow her on her journey. Baker and Isaac were polar opposites, and I loved that about them. Isaac was brooding and serious, whereas Baker (though at times serious) it a pretty fun guy. They balanced each other out really well, and I loved how they interacted with Dovey in different ways. It was apparent to see the differences in character relationships.
Servants of the Storm is a phenomenal book. Dawson is a grade-A writer who knows how to write the perfect balance of action and other things. Her characters jump off the page, and as does her story. Servants of the Storm is beyond amazing.
FTC- Received for review via Edelweiss.
Fan Art by Sarah Tregay
When the picture tells the story…Senior year is almost over, and Jamie Peterson has a big problem. Not college—that’s all set. Not prom—he’ll find a date somehow. No, it’s the worst problem of all: he’s fallen for his best friend.As much as Jamie tries to keep it under wraps, everyone seems to know where his affections lie, and the giggling girls in art class are determined to help Jamie get together with Mason. But Jamie isn’t sure if that’s what he wants—because as much as Jamie would like to come clean to Mason, what if the truth ruins everything? What if there are no more road trips, taco dinners, or movie nights? Does he dare risk a childhood friendship for romance?This book is about what happens when a picture reveals what we can’t say, when art is truer than life, and how falling in love is easy, except when it’s not. Fan Art explores the joys and pains of friendship, of pressing boundaries, and how facing our worst fears can sometimes lead us to what we want most.
This book is so great. So, so great. I read it in a day, and it was my first book of the year (I’m writing this review in January. Hello from the past.) Going into Fan At, I honestly had no idea what to expect. The cover was cute but I hadn’t read the summary. What I found was a serious, yet quirky novel that absolutely captured my heart.
Jamie (though I honestly couldn’t tell if they were a girl or boy for the first few chapters. A boy, by the way) was an incredible narrator. I love that Fan Art is an LGBT book about someone who is on the verge of coming out. Jamie isn’t “out and proud” and he isn’t “in the closet” he isn’t really sure of where he is, and it was absolutely fantastic going on that journey with him. He is one of those main characters that you root for, no matter what happens. Jamie’s story is one that will hopefully help readers.
This is the second book by Sarah Tregay that I’ve read, and I have to say, I absolutely adore her writing. Though Fan Art wasn’t always the most joyful book, Tregay’s writing still always keeps you on the surface of happy. It shows that happiness and struggling can coexist without either of them being overbearing.
I cannot recommend Fan Art enough. It is beautiful, touching, and impeccably written.
FTC- Received via Edelweiss.
Great by Sara Benincasa
In Sara Benincasa's contemporary retelling of The Great Gatsby, a teenage girl becomes entangled in the drama of a Hamptons social circle, only to be implicated in a tragedy that shakes the summer community.Everyone loves a good scandal.Naomi Rye usually dreads spending the summer with her socialite mother in East Hampton. This year is no different. She sticks out like a sore thumb among the teenagers who have been summering (a verb only the very rich use) together for years. But Naomi finds herself captivated by her mysterious next-door neighbor, Jacinta. Jacinta has her own reason for drawing close to Naomi-to meet the beautiful and untouchable Delilah Fairweather. But Jacinta's carefully constructed world is hiding something huge, a secret that could undo everything. And Naomi must decide how far she is willing to be pulled into this web of lies and deception before she is unable to escape.
Being a huge fan of The Great Gatsby, I was a bit weary when it came to starting Great. However, my curiosity got the best of me and I couldn’t resist reading it. I know that Great is a retelling of Gatsby, so this really shouldn’t bother me. But I didn’t like how similar it was? That sounds weird, I know. But I was hoping that the story would be altered at least a little bit (besides gender-bending the characters and setting it in a more current era). That being said, I understand that if Benincasa were to have changed it, there probably would have been a lot of backlash. Other than that, I really liked Great.
I loved that Benincasa changed around the genders of the characters, and it was really interesting to see the similarities and differences between her characters and how they were originally by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Naomi’s voice was fantastic, and it captured the essence of Nick’s voice perfectly. Jacinta had all of the mystique and wonder of Gatsby, and Jacinta’s attachment to Delilah was wonderfully written as well.
Though I would call Great one of my favorite books, I think Benincasa did a really nice job of retelling a classic story. The Great Gatsby is one of my favorite books, and Great did a pretty good job of doing it justice. Sara Benincasa captured all of the wonder of The Great Gatsby while still adding her own original flare. I recommend this to people who liked Gatsby, but are still open to experiencing it in new ways. Great takes awhile to get used to, but it is definitely enjoyable.
FTC- Received from publisher via Edelweiss.
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