Review: Milk and Honey – Rupi Kaur


Milk and Honey – Rupi Kaur

Milk and Honey

Title: Milk and Honey

Author: Rupi Kaur

Release Date: November 4, 2014

Publisher: Createspace

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 204

Source: TBR Shelf

milk and honey is a collection of poetry and prose about survival. It is about the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. It is split into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose, deals with a different pain, heals a different heartache. milk and honey takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look.

2 out of 5 stars


Let me start off this review by saying I know that a lot of people love this book, and I can totally see why. I understand why so many people think this is a great piece of literature about femininity and loving yourself. I just didn’t connect with it at all.

As someone who has never experienced heartbreak, I didn’t find much to connect with. I think it is beautiful and raw and was a quick read, but the writing style didn’t appeal to me very much. I haven’t been a huge fan of poetry/free verse just because I don’t like the choppy style.

I enjoyed the last section of this book because I could relate to it much more. I think that if the whole book was about loving yourself first and being confident with your body I would have liked it more. One of my favorite poems was on page 183. It says:

we are all born so beautiful

the greatest tragedy is being convinced we are not

I really liked this poem because I feel like every single teenage girl can relate to this. I don’t feel beautiful all the time; I don’t feel beautiful without makeup or when I’m not dressed how I like. It’s hard growing up in a society where beauty is pressured by everything. When you don’t feel beautiful you start to believe you never were in the first place. I related to this poem more than any others in this whole book.

Overall, I was pretty underwhelmed by this book. I knew so many people loved it and rated it 5 stars on Goodreads, but I don’t have any experience with the things that were mentioned in the book so I don’t believe I can have an accurate opinion about the matters discussed. I think that if people found this book helpful then the author did her job well. I think this is a book with the good message of loving yourself first, and I can appreciate that. I can appreciate this book, but I don’t love it.

Review: Where the Sidewalk Ends – Shel Silverstein


Where the Sidewalk Ends – Shel Silverstein

Where the Sidewalk Ends

Title: Where the Sidewalk Ends

Author: Shel Silverstein

Release Date: November 2002

Publisher: Harpercollins Childrens Books

Format: Hardcover

Page Number: 176

Source: TBR Shelf

Where the Sidewalk Ends turns forty! Celebrate with this anniversary edition that features an eye-catching commemorative red sticker. This classic poetry collection, which is both outrageously funny and profound, has been the most beloved of Shel Silverstein’s poetry books for generations.

Where the sidewalk ends, Shel Silverstein’s world begins. There you’ll meet a boy who turns into a TV set and a girl who eats a whale. The Unicorn and the Bloath live there, and so does Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout who will not take the garbage out. It is a place where you wash your shadow and plant diamond gardens, a place where shoes fly, sisters are auctioned off, and crocodiles go to the dentist.

Shel Silverstein’s masterful collection of poems and drawings is one of Parent & Child magazine’s 100 Greatest Books for Kids. School Library Journal said, “Silverstein has an excellent sense of rhythm and rhyme and a good ear for alliteration and assonance that make these poems a pleasure to read aloud.”

Shel Silverstein’s incomparable career as a children’s book author and illustrator began with Lafcadio, the Lion Who Shot Back. In 1964, Shel’s creativity continued to flourish as four more books were published in the same year—Don’t Bump the Glump!, A Giraffe and a Half, Who Wants a Cheap Rhinoceros?, and the beloved classic The Giving Tree. Later he continued to build his remarkable body of work with Where the Sidewalk Ends, A Light in the Attic, Falling Up, Every Thing On It, The Missing Piece, The Missing Piece Meets the Big O, and Runny Babbit.

2 out of 5 stars


This does not have any of the magic I remember it having when I was younger. I used to love Shel Silverstein’s books and poems because they were cute and funny, but I was very disappointed. I didn’t really see one poem that I liked from this book. I’m positive because I outgrew it, but it is very strange because I have so many fond memories of his books from when I was younger.

I don’t think that I will read any more of Silverstein’s books. Runny Babbit was my favorite poem/book, so maybe I’ll consider that one again.

I gave this two stars because I think it is a readable book. I didn’t hate it, but I was VERY underwhelmed. A lot of the poems didn’t even make any sense and didn’t rhyme like his usually do. I don’t know. I didn’t want to stop reading it, but I wasn’t overly thrilled to keep reading.

Review: July Thunder (Bad Bloods #3) – Shannon A. Thompson


July Thunder (Bad Bloods #3) – Shannon A. Thompson

Title: July Thunder (Bad Bloods #3)

Author: Shannon A. Thompson

Release Date: April 10, 2017

Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing

Format: Ebook

Page Number: 165

Source: Author

From best-selling author Shannon A. Thompson comes an exciting new duology in the Bad Bloods universe.    Fourteen-year-old Violet has been called many things: a bad blood, a survivor, an immortal…now she has a new name–citizen. But adjusting to a lawful life is not easy, especially when she must live under the rule of the same officers who justified the killings of her flock only eight months earlier.
Segregation of bad bloods and humans is still in effect, and rebellious Violet steps into a school where she is not allowed. When the police get involved, things deteriorate quickly, sparking a new revolution at the wall separating the Highlands from the outskirts.
That’s when Caleb steps in. He might appear to be an average sixteen-year-old bad blood, but he has secrets, and Violet is determined to figure them out. Caleb knows who’s attacking the wall and why, but his true identity remains a mystery–and how he relates to Violet could shake the threatened city to its very core.
Together or not, a storm will form, a rally will start, and shocking truths will be revealed.

3 out of 5 stars


Huge thank you to Shannon A. Thompson for sending me this book! I have really enjoyed getting to know you, and you will always have a special place in my heart as the first author who contacted me!

This is the third installment in the Bad Bloods series by Shannon A. Thompson and this follows Violet and Caleb. Violet can turn into a shadow and was part of both the Northern and Southern flocks before the new presidency. She finds Caleb, a musician, artist, and prostitute, and finds out that he needs help. He has an awful STD called Stilts. It will kill him, but he’s found a way to live longer. A special girl can sing to him and he will stop aging.

Because of the way the Bad Bloods series is set up, this is only half the story and the other half takes place in July Lightning, which I plan to pick up soon! I read this book surprisingly quickly. I have always enjoyed Shannon’s books and this one was good, but I have to say I liked the other set of characters a little bit better. That is probably due to the fact that I read the first two books about them, though.

I was a little confused at the beginning of this book because it has been awhile since I read the first two books of this series, but by about halfway through I felt comfortable with the characters again. The first two books were more plot driven and political, but this book was very character driven. I don’t know which I like better, but probably character driven story lines.

I’m very excited to see where the series goes as this ended in quite a cliffhanger! I can’t wait to see what Cal does, and how the rest of the “flock” reacts to everything. I also loved some of the powers we were introduced to in this book. I really enjoyed the girl who could do hair and the boy with the gems and crystals.

Support Shannon by purchasing and reading a few of her books!

Tea of Choice:

English Breakfast Tea from PG Tips

You can’t ever go wrong with a cup of normal black tea! I have always been a HUGE fan of PG Tips and I love drinking it with sugar and a splash of milk!

Series:

November Rain (Bad Bloods #1)

November Snow (Bad Bloods #2)

July Lightning (Bad Bloods #4)

Review: Hannah’s Moon (American Journey #5) – John A. Heldt


Hannah’s Moon (American Journey #5) – John A. Heldt

Title: Hannah’s Moon (American Journey #5)

Author: John A. Heldt

Release Date: February 8, 2017

Publisher: John A. Heldt

Format: Ebook

Page Number: 481

Source: Author

After struggling for years to have a child, Claire Rasmussen, 34, turns to adoption, only to find new obstacles on the path to motherhood. Then she gets an unlikely phone call and soon learns that a distant uncle possesses the secrets of time travel.

Within weeks, Claire, husband Ron, and brother David find themselves on a train to Tennessee and 1945, where adoptable infants are plentiful and red tape is short. For a time, they find what they seek. Then a beautiful stranger enters their lives, the Navy calls, and a simple, straightforward mission becomes a race for survival.

Filled with suspense, romance, and heartbreak, HANNAH’S MOON, the epic conclusion of the American Journey series, follows the lives of four spirited adults as they confront danger, choices, and change in the tense final months of World War II.

3 out of 5 stars


Huge thank you to John A. Heldt for sending me this final installment of the American Journey series! I’ve loved getting to read these books and am so glad to have gotten to get to know John a little bit through our author/reader relationship.

This has been my favorite of the series so far *rated 3/5 stars because I’ve refined my reviewing lately!* I really enjoyed getting a perspective from this time period. I do enjoy that the Bells have gotten more lenient with letting people stay and come back from different times. People can’t help it if they fall in love with someone while traveling.

I really enjoyed this one, and the ending was really nice. They bring back all the characters from the previous books for a little sneak peek. I think it was a nice conclusion to the series as a whole. I always say this, but I love connecting with authors so much. It’s one of my favorite parts of blogging because you get to meet so many new people!

This book was about a family who has been trying to have a child for a long time, but end up adopting a child. In 2017 there is a huge wait time in order to adopt, but in 1945 there isn’t. The couple travel back in time to the time of World War II and find themselves in the South. They adopt a lovely girl named Hannah, and meet a lovely neighbor who they bond with.

Beautiful conclusion to the series! Go support John by buying and reading some of his novels!!

Series:

September Sky (American Journey #1)

Mercer Street (American Journey #2)

Indiana Belle (American Journey #3)

Class of ’59 (American Journey #4)

Review: The Woman in Cabin 10 – Ruth Ware


The Woman in Cabin 10 – Ruth Ware

Title: The Woman in Cabin 10

Author: Ruth Ware

Release Date: June 30, 2016

Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press

Format: Audiobook

Page Number: 340

Source: Library

In this tightly wound story, Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise with only a handful of cabins. At first, Lo’s stay is nothing but pleasant: the cabins are plush, the dinner parties are sparkling, and the guests are elegant. But as the week wears on, frigid winds whip the deck, gray skies fall, and Lo witnesses what she can only describe as a nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. The problem? All passengers remain accounted for—and so, the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo’s desperate attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong…

With surprising twists and a setting that proves as uncomfortably claustrophobic as it is eerily beautiful, Ruth Ware offers up another intense read.

3 out of 5 stars


My first audiobook is now under my belt! I have to say, I really enjoyed listening to an audiobook. I hope to do so again in the future.

Let’s see. I don’t know exactly how I felt about this book because it’s not something I would typically reach for. I like mysteries, but this had a crime fiction vibe to it, I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t think it was anything spectacular.

This novel is about a woman, Lo Blacklock, who finds herself reporting for her job on a fancy-schmancy cruise ship. She is supposed to make connections with people as this is her first real breakthrough. She is a little shaken as she boards the cruise ship because just days before her house is robbed while she’s there. This was my first disappointment with the story. The burglary was never talked about again! There was no point of having it in the first place. Anyway, she goes onto this cruise ship and has to try and get ahold of herself again. Things start happening and she hears a scream and a large splash one evening. Hmm. Sounds a little sketchy. She starts investigating and ends up getting in trouble.

This is pretty much the whole book, and because I listened to it on audio it went by much slower than it would have had I physically read it. I thought that Lo was an irritating main character to follow. She didn’t really have anything special about her, and she was so whiny.

I loved the suspense of this book, and that is what saved it for me. The whole time I was listening to it I was on the edge of my seat. I did predict who the bad guys were, but I think it was because I had time to think while listening to it. I think the whole thing was fairly predictable, but there was quite a bit of suspense tied up around it.

There were so many loose ends at the end of the book, though. I don’t know who wrote on her mirror. Or who took the mascara. Or how she got caught. Or who the burglar really was at the beginning… ugh. I think that this could have been developed a little more and it would have been greatly improved.

Overall, I think this was a good book. It was suspenseful, but a little predictable. The whole plot could have been fixed if there was some communication and trust, but it wouldn’t have been as suspenseful. I did LOVE the narrator of this though. She was British, so it was fun to listen to. More elegant than an American accent!

Tea of Choice: (I’m thinking of making this a new part of my reviews because I almost always am drinking tea while writing a blog post. I will just mention the tea I am drinking at the moment, or one I enjoy!)

Hyvee 100% Natural Green Tea

I’m not a huge green tea drinker, but I’m trying desperately to enjoy it. It’s my goal to be able to drink all my tea with no sugar so then you can actually taste the tea… Because I don’t drink a lot of green tea I don’t know how it compares to others of better quality. This is probably fairly lower tier as it is cheap and from a grocery store, but I am *trying to* enjoy it.

Pre-orders


Pre-ordering books. Great, or a waste of time?

I personally am torn between the two, because sometimes a pre-order can cost more than the book at a store, but you can also have it delivered the day it comes out, which is always fun.

The one book I have pre-ordered right now is Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare. I have always been a huge Cassandra Clare fan, and have read and reviewed all the Shadowhunter books, so whenever she has a new release I just want to read it right away. I hope that I can get my copy the day it comes out so I can read it right then. I’m currently rereading Lady Midnight and loving it even more the second time.

I never pre-order first books in series unless it’s from an author I love. I don’t just randomly pre-order books because I still have so many TBR books to read at home… I think the idea of pre-ordering is fun because you get the book right away after it’s released, but I also think it can be quite expensive.

Let me know how you feel about pre-ordering books down below!

Review: Kitty Hawk and the Icelandic Intrigue (Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency #3) – Iain Reading


Kitty Hawk and the Icelandic Intrigue (Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency #3) – Iain Reading

Kitty Hawk and the Icelandic Intrigue (Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency #3)

Title: Kitty Hawk and the Icelandic Intrigue (Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency #3)

Author: Iain Reading

Release Date: April 19, 2013

Publisher: Createspace

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 220

Source: Author

Following in the footsteps of her hero Amelia Earhart, Kitty Hawk sets off on an epic flight around the world and arrives in Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavik where she finds herself immersed in a beautiful alien world of volcanoes, Vikings, elves and trolls. Before she knows it Kitty is plunged head first into an amazing adventure that sweeps her across a rugged landscape where humans and nature exist in side-by-side in an uneasy truce and magical realms seem to lie just out of sight beneath the surface. Kitty Hawk and the Icelandic Intrigue is the dazzling third installment of the Flying Detective Agency series featuring Kitty Hawk, an intrepid teenaged seaplane pilot with boundless curiosity and a knack for getting herself into – and out of – all kinds of precarious situations. This is a perfect book to fire the imaginations of readers of all ages – armchair explorers and amateur detectives alike. From dangerous criminals and corrupt government officials to mystical beings and clashes with the elemental forces of nature, this book has it all. Come and join Kitty Hawk as she experiences the strange and extraordinary world of the Icelanders, and unravels the Icelandic Intrigue.

3 out of 5 stars


Huge thank you to Iain Reading for sending me this book! I have enjoyed this series so far and am excited to finish the series!

Kitty Hawk flies to Iceland and encounters strange names, paper airplanes, and a car chase. Kitty finds herself in adventures she didn’t think she would come across, but loves the new experiences.

This is the third book in the Kitty Hawk series, and I took so long to read it! I started it on a trip I took and got about halfway through, then school got very busy and I kind of forgot about it. I finished it on a bus ride to a music event for my school’s concert band on Friday and am getting around to writing the review right now. Overall this book was kind of slow. I take part of the blame for it since I took so long to read it, though.

These books are more companion novels than in a series, because each book chronicles a new adventure in a new place for Kitty Hawk. She takes her bright red plane and flies across the world. It’s quite fun because I love traveling and love adventure books, so it’s a nice change from your typical read.

I enjoyed learning about the naming rules in Iceland. She traveled to Iceland and stayed with friends, and while she was there she learned that in Iceland the child takes the first name of either parent and adds son or daughter to the end, and then that is their last name. There aren’t family names, which I think it quite interesting. I thought it was cool that Iain Reading put this short piece of information in the book, it added a unique twist.

Overall, I think this book series would be good for a younger audience. I would consider this more middle grade. I think I would have liked it a lot more had I read it during early middle school.

Again, thanks to Iain for sending me a copy of this book!