Saturday, July 25, 2015

Review: Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan

[Warning: Minor Spoilers Ahead]
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Goodreads Summary:

Esperanza thought she'd always live with her family on their ranch in Mexico--she'd always have fancy dresses, a beautiful home, and servants. But a sudden tragedy forces Esperanza and Mama to flee to California during the Great Depression, and to settle in a camp for Mexican farm workers. Esperanza isn't ready for the hard labor, financial struggles, or lack of acceptance she now faces. When their new life is threatened, Esperanza must find a way to rise above her difficult circumstances--Mama's life, and her own, depend on it.

I received this book as part of a Goodreads First Reads giveaway.

As I've mentioned before, during my younger days I read a lot of historical fiction for school, ranging from the excellent to the forgettable. Unfortunately, this led me to grow somewhat tired of the genre, which means I'm always going to be a bit more critical of historical fiction novels. My new quest is to find a book in this genre that truly wows me. Unfortunately, Esperanza Rising is not that book, despite glowing reviews from countless people.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Review: Cress by Marissa Meyer

[Warning: Minor Spoilers Ahead]

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Goodreads Summary:

In this third book in the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who's only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

It's been quite a while since I read this book, and I've read quite a bit of other material in the meantime. Although I remember thoroughly enjoying the story, the details as to why are no longer so clear in my mind. But I will do the best I can to share my feelings and thoughts about it with you all.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Meme: "Waiting on" Wednesday - Winter by Marissa Meyer

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that allows bloggers to highlight books yet to be published that they can't wait to read.

This week, I am looking forward to:

Winter by Marissa Meyer 

Publication Date: November 10, 2015

Goodreads Summary:

Princess Winter is admired by the Lunar people for her grace and kindness, and despite the scars that mar her face, her beauty is said to be even more breathtaking than that of her stepmother, Queen Levana.

Winter despises her stepmother, and knows Levana won’t approve of her feelings for her childhood friend–the handsome palace guard, Jacin. But Winter isn’t as weak as Levana believes her to be and she’s been undermining her stepmother’s wishes for years. Together with the cyborg mechanic, Cinder, and her allies, Winter might even have the power to launch a revolution and win a war that’s been raging for far too long.

Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters?

Why: This is the 4th book in the Lunar Chronicles Series, which I have absolutely loved so far (I have previously reviewed both Cinder and Scarlet, and a review for Cress will be up hopefully tomorrow). I have yet to read Fairest, which is a companion novel centered around the antagonist in the series, so hopefully, when I do read it, it will tide me over until Winter is released. I really want to know what happens to these characters! The finale is almost here.

Happy Reading!


Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Meme: Top Ten Tuesday - Top Ten Books That Celebrate Diversity/Diverse Characters

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme and link-up created by The Broke and the Bookish in which participating bloggers share their top ten favorite books about a particular topic, as determined by the host.

This week's topic is books that celebrate diversity and diverse characters. This includes ethnic, religious, and racial minorities as well as characters with disabilities, etc. I found this topic to be somewhat challenging as I don't read a lot of books that fall into these categories. My go-to genre is fantasy (as well as a lot of sci-fi), which doesn't often showcase diversity (though it does on occasion). So almost all of the books I ended up choosing are juvenile historical fiction novels that I read for school when I was younger. I can attest, however, that despite their target age group, these books are excellent in their own right and can easily be enjoyed by teenagers and adults.