Review: The Dressmaker’s Secret (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy #1) – Kellyn Roth


The Dressmaker’s Secret (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy #1) – Kellyn Roth

The Dressmaker's Secret (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, #1)

Title: The Dressmaker’s Secret (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy #1)

Author: Kellyn Roth

Release Date: January 10, 2016

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services

Format: eBook

Page Number: 214

Source: Author

After a revealing conversation with the first children of her age she’s ever met, curious eight-year-old Alice Chattoway realizes that one ought to have a father … and she doesn’t. Having determined that his absence is making her mother unhappy, Alice resolves to find him and create a family for herself.

However, Alice’s mother, Miss Chattoway, is reluctant to answer any questions posed about a man she’d much rather forget. While Alice investigates, Miss Chattoway tries to balance her own spiritual turmoil with her need to be both mother and provider to her daughters.

Will Alice ever unravel her mother’s secrets? Can Miss Chattoway let go of the past to reach for the future?

3 out of 5 stars


Huge thank you to Kellyn Roth for sending me a copy of this book!

This story follows Miss Claire Chattoway and her twin daughters Alice and Ivy. Miss Chattoway is a single mother in the 1870s living near London, so people are skeptical of her. Decent women don’t get pregnant before marriage because during that time people didn’t just sleep around if they were in the right social circles. Anyway, so Miss Chattoway is raising two girls and is running her dress shop. She creates the designs and sews dresses for people of the town she’s in. Alice gets very curious as to why she doesn’t have a father, and Claire is very skeptical to telling her about how she came to be. Alice does some digging and finds out that her mother is heartbroken, but was actually married when she was 17. Who is her father?

This story was really cute! Before reading this I didn’t fully delve into the synopsis, so I didn’t know that it was taking place in the 1800s in England. YAY ENGLAND. My dream travel destination :) That was a nice surprise.

I really enjoyed Alice as a character because she was so curious and willing to look for what she wanted. I didn’t really enjoy how her sister Ivy was portrayed. It said multiple times that she was a simple girl and didn’t really understand what was going on, but I think some of the language choices should have been evaluated more. I found Miss Chattoway to be a little annoying at the beginning, but I came to enjoy her by the end of the story. Her story was tragic and made me sad, so I felt sorry for her.

Another thing, though. This book was very predictable. I guessed the ending about halfway through, which isn’t bad, but I did guess everything that was going to happen. I did like the ending even though it was predictable. It was sweet, and made me want to continue on with the series. I really hope that Alice and the stable boy end up falling in love because aww that would be so cute.

This book was a little bit slow at the beginning, so it was kind of hard for me to get into and found myself reaching for other books, but I am glad that I read it! Again, huge thank you to Kellyn! Can’t wait to continue with the series :)

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Review: Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #3) – Yumi Unita


Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #3) – Yumi Unita

Bunny Drop, Vol. 3

Title: Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #3)

Author: Yumi Unita

Release Date: March 29, 2011

Publisher: Yen Press

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 224

Source: Public Library

As an impromptu dad to Rin, his late grandfather’s illegitimate child, Daikichi Kawachi has experienced his share of firsts while caring for his little aunt (?). Now it’s Daikichi’s turn to battle the initial wave of separation anxiety as Rin leaves the nest… for her first day of elementary school! Rin’s elementary school isn’t the only place with new faces, either. Daikichi’s office is also inundated with first-timers, some of whom have their eyes on their gangly new coworker! And while father and daughter are experiencing (coping with?) all these firsts left and right, the first anniversary of Gramps’s death also sneaks up on the pair… as does the first anniversary of their paths crossing…

4 out of 5 stars


This has been my favorite volume so far because Rin has grown up a little bit and is talking more. This is a really cute series, and I’m glad that I’ve kept going. There is more plot now, and we’re finding out more about Rin’s biological mother. Daikichi is struggling with work and trying to find a balance in his life with everything that’s going on, but Rin is trying to help with anything she can.

This is seriously so cute. I know that a lot of manga is kind of violent, but this is just adorable. There isn’t much to the plot, but I want to keep reading. I think I might try to watch the anime because I’m enjoying the manga so much. I really enjoy the art style; it’s easy to follow and I like how Rin is portrayed.

Rin is a very real character. She acts just her age, and the way she repeats some sentences reminds me of the younger sister in My Neighbor Totoro. One of my all time favorite movies, by the way…. Highly recommend, super cute.

I really have been enjoying Daikichi because he’s having to deal with raising a daughter, lots of work, but he’s also trying and failing with his love life. It’s funny how bad he is at talking to women. One of my favorite scenes was at the factory he works at, a woman comes up to him and tries to talk to him, and he’s just going on and on about how he’s so bad at talking to women. It’s funny. I enjoy it.

Like I said on the review of the first in this series, if you have any manga recommendations PLEASE comment them below! I really hope to get more into manga :)

Series:

Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #1)

Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #2)

Review: Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #2) – Yumi Unita


Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #2) – Yumi Unita

Bunny Drop, Vol. 2

Title: Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #2)

Author: Yumi Unita

Release Date: September 28, 2010

Publisher: Yen Press

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 208

Source: Public Library

Like a plot out of a soap opera, bachelor Daikichi Kawachi’s boringly normal life got a touch of the abnormal when he learned that his late granddad left behind a love child. And further rattling the unexpected skeleton in the closet? The ungainly, unglamorous Daikichi’s impulsive decision to take in little Rin! But as the impromptu dad and his charge learn to adapt to both one another and their very new living situation, Daikichi is plagued by thoughts of Rin’s mother. Who is she? Why has she been quiet all this time? Hot on the trail after discovering a modem at the old man’s computer-less abode, Daikichi plays detective in search for answers. But elementary school enrollment, extracurricular activities, and other parental obligations wait for no man, so when the day of confrontation with the mysterious Masato arrives, will Daikichi be prepared?!

3 out of 5 stars


This volume of Bunny Drop follows Rin and Daikichi. Daikichi is trying to find out who Rin’s biological mother is, so he enlists the help of his own mother. Rin is about to go into first grade, so she needs to start acting like a “big girl.” Daikichi doesn’t know how he could live his life without Rin.

This volume was really cute. There were two scenes that made my heart melt because of the cuteness. First, when Rin and Daikichi are shopping for a desk and a backpack. It felt so real because that’s how a kid would act if they had to go shopping for something like that. She was so excited about having everything, and ended up wearing her backpack when she got home that night. It was so cute because I remember doing stuff like that. I remember wearing new clothes at home because I was so excited, or writing in a new notebook I just got.

The second part was when Daikichi said that it’s not bad to want to be held when you’re in first grade. You can always be held, sometimes adults even need to be held sometimes. So Rin remembers the time that he was crying because she told him she didn’t want him to adopt her, and she said sorry and that next time she would hold him if he needed her to.

It was so fricking cute.

At first after finishing volume 1 I didn’t know if I wanted to continue on, but now I definitely want to! These mangas are so cute, and I can’t wait to read more of them :)

Series:

Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #1)

Bunny Drop (Bunny Drop Volume #3)

Review: Mask of Shadows (Mask of Shadows #1) – Linsey Miller


Mask of Shadows (Mask of Shadows #1) – Linsey Miller

Mask of Shadows (Untitled #1)

Title: Mask of Shadows (Mask of Shadows #1)

Author: Linsey Miller

Release Date: August 29, 2017

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Format: ebook

Page Number: 310

Source: Netgalley

I Needed to Win.
They Needed to Die.

Sallot Leon is a thief, and a good one at that. But gender fluid Sal wants nothing more than to escape the drudgery of life as a highway robber and get closer to the upper-class—and the nobles who destroyed their home.

When Sal steals a flyer for an audition to become a member of The Left Hand—the Queen’s personal assassins, named after the rings she wears—Sal jumps at the chance to infiltrate the court and get revenge.

But the audition is a fight to the death filled with clever circus acrobats, lethal apothecaries, and vicious ex-soldiers. A childhood as a common criminal hardly prepared Sal for the trials. And as Sal succeeds in the competition, and wins the heart of Elise, an intriguing scribe at court, they start to dream of a new life and a different future, but one that Sal can have only if they survive.

1 out of 5 stars


I got this book in exchange for an honest review from Netgalley.

This book was nothing special. It honestly was just a rip-off version of Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. It was about assassins fighting to the death, so in that sense it was also a little bit like The Hunger Games.

I hate when books are just rip-offs, and I thought this would be interesting because it was marketed as a gender-fluid main character. Okay. A little bit about that.

The ONLY representation of that was when they said that they liked being called what they were dressed as. Which I’m assuming is a quality of someone who is gender-fluid, but there was nothing other than that. There was no reason other than the fact that the author wanted it to be a diverse book. Which pisses me off. Have adequate representation, and if you’re going to try, at least do it right and do it justice. Please. There are people that refer to themselves as gender-fluid, and I feel like this isn’t good representation of that.

There was also no beginning to the story. None at all. It just jumped right in with Sal fighting people pretty much. I’m not about that. Give me a little background information, please.

The romance in this book was also quite below average, and I was so disappointed with that. Because the gender-fluid thing wasn’t really introduced well, the romance seemed so rushed and fake because there was no back story on sexual preference. Sal just kinda ended up liking this girl, but she was of course the one who he robbed at the beginning. UGH give me some actual plot please.

I would not recommend this book just because of the poor representation attempt. I’m sad because I wanted this to be good. Ugh, life.

Review: They Both Die at the End – Adam Silvera


They Both Die at the End – Adam Silvera

They Both Die at the End

Title: They Both Die at the End

Author: Adam Silvera

Release Date: September 5, 2017

Publisher: HarperTeen

Format: Hardcover

Page Number: 384

Source: Barnes and Noble

On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today. Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure and to live a lifetime in a single day.

5 out of 5 stars


Spoiler alert: I LOVED THIS BOOK!

Mateo is shy and has some anxiety. He lives at home, his mother died, his father is in a coma in the hospital. Mateo receives a call from Death-Cast telling him he’ll die in the next 24 hours.

Rufus lives with a foster family and loves his foster brothers more than anything. He is beating the shit out of his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend when he receives a call from Death-Cast.

Mateo and Rufus both sign up for the Last Friend app in hopes of finding someone they connect to to make their last days on Earth more bearable. They match with each other, and spend the best days of their lives living the rest of their lives to the fullest.

I loved this book. I loved every single moment, and I didn’t want it to end.

This was my most anticipated release of the year aside from Lord of Shadows. I am so happy to say that this is one of my favorite books, and will recommend it to anyone and everyone. Quick story. I went to Barnes and Noble on the 4th of September knowing that this book was supposed to come out the next day. I go in with a plan. I’m going to cheat the system with this book because I want to read it now. So, I walk into the store. I go straight to the register and ask for help finding this book. I show the woman at the counter a photo of the cover, and she immediately tells me she’ll look for it for me. She calls some guy over to get help because she sees that it’s supposed to be released the next day, and he tells her that he put the books on the shelf that morning. He leads me over to the YA section, and points out the book to me, and I control myself while he hands me the book. I went in with the plan of cheating the system, and didn’t even have to. Go me.

Anyway, I started this book on the 4th and knew I was going to love it right away. The writing style was so fun and interesting, and also beautiful and poetic. The characters were so beautifully flawed it felt real. I can’t even express how much I loved reading this book.

Mateo and Rufus were so different from each other, but meshed so well together. Their friendship started, and you just knew that they were going to have a real friendship on their last day together. Even though this book took place over one day, the friendship between them felt so organic and real. So real. I loved them together because they helped one another so much.

The concept of this book is what originally sold me. It sold me, because I could see something like this actually happening. I don’t know how it would actually happen, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a way to figure it out. Getting a call on the day you’re going to die seems eerie, but it’s a really cool idea for a book. I think this would be such an amazing movie to watch, and I hope it happens, because damn I’m all for that.

This book was sweet, beautiful, sad, funny, cute, and full of love and heartache and hope. I will recommend this book to anyone. I loved this, and plan on reading more by Adam Silvera because I need more of his writing. He created one of my favorite friendships I’ve read, even though they only had one day together. Please read this book :)

Review: Assassin’s Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy #1) – Robin Hobb


Assassin’s Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy #1) – Robin Hobb

Assassin's Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy, #1)

Title: Assassin’s Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy #1)

Author: Robin Hobb

Release Date: May 1995

Publisher: Del Ray

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 435

Source: TBR Pile

4 out of 5 stars


FitzChivalry, the Prince’s bastard son. Taken away with the mother, then brought back to the kingdom at age six. The confused six year old boy doesn’t remember his mother’s family. He doesn’t know his father. He’s thrust into this mysterious world full of politics he will take years to fully understand. Taken in by the stable master and cared for with the careful hand of someone good with animals. Later taken in, and trained. Trained to be an assassin.

Although this book took me quite some time to finish, it was so good. I loved reading this, because it’s the start of an epic fantasy series that I know I will love. Robin Hobb is introduced with this debut novel that starts the Farseer world that takes the fantasy realm to a whole new level. I can’t wait to read the next books!

There was so much that happened in this book, and I don’t know where to start because there are so many things that will spoil the ending or the journey to the ending. Oh my gosh. Okay, I’ll do my best here…

Fitz was a wonderful character. He was so innocent at the beginning, and I related to him on so many levels because he’s quiet and shy and doesn’t want to be a trouble to people around him. One of my favorite parts happened near the middle-end of this book while he’s with Prince Verity. Verity cares for him as a nephew, and disregard the fact that he’s a bastard of his brother. It was so sweet and such a turning point in the story for Fitz.

Chade, the man who ends up training Fitz to be an assassin is such an interesting and deep character, and I can’t wait to see his backstory and how he came to be in the position he’s in. No one really knows about him. He lives in the castle along with everyone else, but no one really knows he’s there. He’s silent to everyone. Everyone except Fitz.

Burrich is Fitz’s caretaker throughout his childhood, and they come to love each other in a very strange distant sort of way, but are still family none the less. Burrich is the stable master and cared for all of Prince Chivalry’s animals. He is a loyal follower of Chivalry, and loves him as a friend, and what I feel like is a brotherly bond.

There is so much to talk about, but again, don’t want to spoil anyone. My advice for this. Let yourself take it slowly. There are SO many small and important pieces of information that you will miss if you speed through. This is a slow-going book because Robin Hobb describes everything in such detail, but it’s so worth it. The detail oriented writing style that is necessary to create a great story of fantasy is here. I see so much potential in this series, and I know that I’m going to love the rest of the Elderling Realm series/world.

This is both character driven, and plot driven. The writing is so beautiful, and the last half of this book was amazing. Please give this a try if you love fantasy. You won’t regret it!

Review: In Real Life – Cory Doctorow and Jen Wang


In Real Life – Cory Doctorow and Jen Wang

In Real Life

Title: In Real Life

Author: Cory Doctorow and Jen Wang

Release Date: October 14, 2014

Publisher: First Second

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 175

Source: Public Library

Anda loves Coarsegold Online, the massively-multiplayer role-playing game where she spends most of her free time. It’s a place where she can be a leader, a fighter, a hero. It’s a place where she can meet people from all over the world, and make friends.

But things become a lot more complicated when Anda befriends a gold farmer–a poor Chinese kid whose avatar in the game illegally collects valuable objects and then sells them to players from developed countries with money to burn. This behavior is strictly against the rules in Coarsegold, but Anda soon comes to realize that questions of right and wrong are a lot less straightforward when a real person’s real livelihood is at stake.

4 out of 5 stars


Anda is a gamer, and she gets invited to join a game called Coarsegold Online by a woman who comes to talk to her computer class at school. She gets told that she won’t have to pretend to be a boy in the game because there is an all girl group in this game. Everything is great, until she’s told she needs to go and kill some gold-farmers, because they’re just mooching off the system.

So she goes, but she finds that they don’t fight back, but she goes through with the orders anyway. Later, she meets a gold-farmer who speaks English and talks back to her about what’s happening. She befriends him against her leader’s wishes.

She finds times to talk to him and finds out he lives in China and doesn’t make much money, so he has to work a lot. She decides to try and help him…

The artwork is literally everything I’ve ever wanted from a graphic novel. It’s kind of like watercolor, and the colors are so vibrant and beautiful. It’s pretty much all pastels and very saturated color; I highly recommend reading it just for the fact that the art is GORGEOUS.

I’d say that the story is a pretty solid 3/5 stars, but the artwork sold me. Oh my gosh I’m in love. I think the message was good, and this would be good for any gamer girls who just feel out of place in the male dominated gaming world. I am personally not a gamer, but I could still relate to this.

I’ve been really getting into graphic novels/comics recently and would LOVE some recommendations. The library in my town for college is amazing and has tons of different options. Please, please, please give me some graphic novel/comic/manga recs!