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August’s mini reviews!

Hundred Percent by Karen Romano Young
August 9, 2016

Christine Gouda is in her final year of elementary school. With 6th grade comes new clothes, new boys, and a new name (Tink just doesn’t suit her anymore, she needs something more grown-up and mature for middle school). When her bestie starts hanging out with the popular girls, Tink realizes there’s more to growing up than she thought.

This was a one-sitting read, though several times throughout the novel I felt uncomfortable enough to think about DNFing it. While the talk and worries about losing your best friend to the popular crowd, going through puberty, moving on to the middle school, etc were all age-appropriate and genuine, SO much of this book had my skin crawling.

A girl’s mother is constantly (aka I lost count) referred to as a slut – by both adults and children, for the school talent show Tink and her group stage a performance of The Rolling Stones’ Honky Tonk Women, complete with bar-room brawl and “she tried to take me upstairs for a ride“, but what really sealed the deal was the boy (an 11-year-old) who told Tink multiple times that she would “look good naked.” No. Noooo.

Yes, kids this age are going to swear and make comments about sex, but this book took it too far. Also, I was a little confused by the music included. Any band mentioned was something their parents would have grown up with: Sonny & Cher, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, etc. I don’t know if Young just doesn’t know of any current bands or what, but that struck me as odd. Another thing that concerned me was the possible abuse plot that was simply forgotten about. At one point a classmate mentions he was so afraid of his dad after a team lost a football game that he hid under the bed the entire weekend and refused to leave even for food. Tink mentions this to her teacher and…that’s it. Never brought up again.

A HUGE thank you to Chronicle Books for providing me with an e-ARC!

Moo by Sharon Creech
August 30, 2016

Reena and her little brother Luke had no idea what to expect when their family moves to Maine, but a nasty cow named Zora certainly wasn’t part of the plan! Told in verse, Moo follows Reena and Luke as they’re unwillingly volunteered to help their elderly neighbor Mrs. Falala on her farm and, along the way, learn what a little bit of kindness can do to a person.

Look, so I even have to say anything here? It’s Sharon Creech. There’s a cow. Because of the format it took all of twenty minutes to get through but it’s stayed with me long, long after.

A HUGE thank you to HarperCollins for providing me with an e-ARC!

Paper Princess by Erin Watt
April 4, 2016

Ella Harper knows what it takes to survive and she’s done things she’s not proud of. With the recent death of her mother, she’s had to hide the fact that she’s 17 and living alone. Unfortunately for Ella, her school finds out. Or, rather, a VERY wealthy man who claims to be a good friend of her long lost father. Callum Royal offers Ella a pretty sizable fortune with a catch: she needs to finish school and move into his mansion. Where his five sons also live.

This one has Kdrama written all over it! A poor, down on her luck girl is plucked out of her crappy apartment and sent to live in a sprawling mansion with five cute boys? Sign me up! A friend just happened to have this one and the sequel and I’m so so glad she let me borrow them. Paper Princess was a one-sitting read. I TORE through it and couldn’t get enough. There’s humor, there’s drama, there were a few moments that had me raging at the boys, but man oh man this was good. …and thank God I have the sequel on hand because there’s a horrible cliffhanger of an ending!

You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day
August 11, 2015

The Internet’s Queen of the Geeks shares the story of her, well, unique childhood (hippie parents who decided to try their hand at homeschooling only to decide the kids can handle the learning on their own) to starting college at 16 and the early days of her career and the leap of faith that changed everything.

So here’s the thing. Apart from Dr. Horrible and having heard of The Guild, I really don’t know much about Felicia Day. I know she’s outrageously popular in the nerd/geek/gamer world, but that’s about it. However, this one came highly recced by a good friend and I love it when authors do the narration for their own audiobooks, plus this was a whole 6 hours long!

Felicia tries a little too hard to show just how quirky and awkward she is with a TON of asides and laughing at her own jokes and eventually that got to me. Her openness about her anxiety and depression seemed genuine and those chapters were interesting, as was her take on GamerGate.

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