Coffee & Characters | Favorite YA Heroines

Few of you know that most of my days are spent as a barista at a popular coffee joint that you may or may not frequent one…maybe two…alright three times a day. After working at a coffee shop for multiple years I have discovered that there becomes a certain bond that manifests between barista and beverage. You understand the ends and outs of each hand-crafted drink and you know which customer will savor its flavor and which ones will hand their freshly made cup right back to you.

So, what happens when your favorite YA heroine enters your local Starbucks?

I, too, have asked myself this question many a times and thought, “hey, I might actually know the answer!”

Therefore I introduce this post, “Coffee & Characters: Favorite YA Heroines”

1. Katniss Everdeen: Tall Black Coffee

Katniss Everdeen

via zombiesruineverything.com

Katniss grew up poor, so even walking into a Starbucks is probably the most terrifying and guilt-ridden feeling in the world. Coffee is totally a “Capital” drink, especially when it’s priced at $1.75 a cup. However, if ordering coffee won her the hunger games, which would she choose? My guess, is a tall black. I mean come on, 1. It is the cheapest thing on the menu (besides water) and  2. Strong coffee is made for a strong girl (right?!). However, she should probably stick with decaf because I am sure her anxiety is already through the roof.

2. Bella Swan: Grande Vanilla Latte

Bella Swan Twilight

via coolspotters.com

Bella is more of the plain-jane/every-day gal type. So, I’m going to say she would most likely order a grande vanilla latte. Nothing says “simple” quite like vanilla. And since she is cold-blooded, something warm is probably more her fancy. However, come Halloween I could foresee her switching it up and sipping a “Franken Frap” with Edward for kicks and giggles…or excuse me, hisses and bites.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. Tris Prior: Double Tall Cappuccino

Tris Prior Divergent and Insurgent

via youtube.com

I would peg Katniss and Tris to have similar tastes since they come from similar back stories. However, Tris has a little more punch to her. She’s brave, fierce, and isn’t afraid of leaping off the edge (literally). So why not pump up her drink with an extra shot of espresso? Plus, I think she needs the energy with all the punching, ducking, running, climbing, jumping, spinning…you get my point.

4. Hermonie Granger: Venti Butterbeer Frappuccino

Hermoine Granger - Harry Potter

via tr.harrypotter.wikia.com

I would be a fool if I said otherwise, right?! Hermonie is super studious and often serious, but she also has a huge fluffy and fun side making a frappuccino her best bet. And what frappuccino you ask? None other than the Butterbeer frappuccino, of course! A little toffee nut, some caramel, all blended and melted together? It’s like magic! YUM!

“It is “butterBEER” not “butterBEAR!”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        5. Clary Fray: Tall Mocha

Clary Fray - The Mortal Instruments

via mortalinstruments.org

Clary is a pretty simple girl, okay not really, but you can sort of relate to her on a teenage, love-sick level, right? What Clary definitely has is a warm, protective side. She is super caring and loving and is always looking out for her friends and family, even if it means reaching a bit into the dark side. That’s why a tall mocha would be her beverage of choice. The base of the drink is simple, but the mocha adds a sweet yet strong and dark aspect making it totally Clary.

Did I miss your favorite YA heroine? Let me know in the comments and I will remedy this blunder with their preferred drink choice! 

Review | Geek Girl

Geek Girl by Holly Smale

Geek Girl by Holly Smale Published by HarperCollins

four stars

Who hasn’t wanted to be an international supermodel their entire life? Oh… that would be Harriet Manners. Harriet is all numbers and logical thinking. She gets math but doesn’t understand fashion. She leaves all of the beauty tips and tricks to her best friend, Nat. At least until she gets “spotted” at a local fashion event where her “geek” life gets flipped upside down.

Geek Girl by Holly Smale is laugh-out-loud funny and will leave you with all the warm and fuzzies. It will remind you to celebrate who you are and that we are more than what we label ourselves.

Smale’s characters are golden. Each character holds their own and their are so many dominant and out-there personalities you will constantly be entertained even after the last page.

There are a handful of super duper moral guidances hidden among the pages of this book which unveil a beautiful coming of age story. One of the greatest is rendered in this quote:

“Nobody really metamorphoses. Cinderella is always Cinderella, just in a nicer dress. The Ugly Duckling was always a swan, just a smaller version. And I bet the tadpole and the caterpillar still feel the same, even when they’re jumping and flying, swimming and floating.

Just like I am now.

I didn’t need to transform after all.
My name is Harriet Manners and I am a geek.
And maybe that’s not so bad after all.”

If you are in search for a feel good and light-hearted novel, this one’s for you.

For full synopsis for Geek Girl, click here. 


All opinions are my own and are not affiliated or endorsed by any company or organization. 

Giveaway | The Book Trove Easter Giveaway

IMG_0252

Happy Easter, friends! The Easter Bunny whispered to me that some of you are itching for a new read. Since the Easter Bunny & I are pretty close I figured I’d help him out a little and do an Easter Flash Giveaway! 

You officially have 72 hours to enter to win a book of your choosing from the Book Depository. (Aren’t you “egg-cited”?!)

Contest ends Wednesday April 8th @ 6 PM EST. 

To enter:

1. Head over to our Instagram or Twitter page and like and repost our Easter giveway post with #abookisheaster.
2. Follow us Instagram and/or Twitter
3. Tag a friend to earn a second entry! 

The rules and stuff:

1. Open internationally to wherever the book depository ships. 
2. If under 18, you must have parental consent to release mailing address upon win. 
3. If your account is private please make sure you account is public for 24 hours starting 4/8. (Or I will not be able to see your entry.)
4. Please only repost/retweet photo once. To gain a second entry mention/tag a friend. 

This giveaway is open for 72 hours so “hop” to it and enter! 

Review| The Last Time We Say Goodbye

The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand via Goodreads

 

five stars

Grief can be one of the toughest emotions to capture, because each person tends to grieve a little unlike the other. With that being said– Bravo, Cynthia Hand for portraying the ugliness of grief so beautifully and so honestly.

I’ve read a lot of books recently that ended with death. You have picture-perfect moments through 3/4ths of the book and then the inevitable hits and your heart feels like it was put through some weird & tortuous organ shredder. I appreciate that Hand began with death and ended her story towards healing.

I will echo my sentiment written in my review of All the Bright Places. When an author and a reader share in the same experience and the work between the author and the reader reflect that experience, there is a magic that occurs. I lost a friend to suicide about 10 years ago to the month. Suicide is tricky. As Hand points out, there is a different tone to death when the death is occurred by the victims own hands.

“They took Ty’s name off the roster.  The even expunged his school records for the year, as if they could erase his existence altogether.

I’d bet good money they didn’t do that kind of thing with Hailey McKennett, who lost her battle with cystic fibrosis two years ago, or Sammie Sullivan, who died of complications from pneumonia, or Jacob Wright, who was killed in a car crash driving home drunk from a party at Branched Oak Lake last summer.  Jacob got a tree planted for him at the front of the school, a plaque under it that I pass every day walking in that reads WE’LL MISS YOU, J.  Sammie got a moment of silence during first period that year and an entire page of the yearbook devoted to her memory.  They read Hailey’s name at graduation.

But Ty got his locker packed up and delivered promptly back to my mother, before we’d even had a chance to bury him.

Because it was suicide.

Because they don’t want to seem like they’re condoning it.

There are also a lot of “what ifs”. What if I would have said this…done this…noticed this. After dealing with my own grief I still sometimes wonder if things could have ended differently than they did. But has Hand mentions so beautifully, the only person that could have helped him was him. At some point you have to come to peace with not only your loss but with yourself.

I can’t end this review without mentioning Lex. I LOVE her. She is logical, not emotional, slightly socially awkward, and she is who she is. She doesn’t strive to be something she’s not. She isn’t able to curse with conviction—which I can relate—and she views the world in a completely unique way. Honestly, I was thrilled that Hand made a Bones reference because it made it so easy to connect and understand her character.  (Also Bones is my all-time favorite TV show, so, just reading that I knew this book would be a good one.)

The Last Time We Say Goodbye is a beautifully written portrayal of loss, understanding, guilt, grief, and most importantly healing. If you liked All the Bright Places or The Fault in Our Stars, add this to your list.

Click here for full synopsis.


All opinions are my own and are not affiliated or endorsed with any company or organization. 

 

New Releases | April 2015

April 2015 New Book Releases

Anyone else feel like March sort of just blew right by? I sure do, but I am happy to say that Spring is finally here! (Hooray!)

March was packed with really great happenings (some book related, some not) as well as some not so great moments (totally not book related). All this to say, it has been a really busy month and my reading has greatly suffered. I did manage to FINALLY finish The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon. It wasn’t entirely my cup of tea, but that hasn’t strayed me from looking forward to the third installment of The Bone Season.  This month I also picked up Red Queen (so good-go read it now) and I just put down The Last Time We Say Goodbye (review to come).

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to speak with Laura Oliver, a Random House representative, at my local library. Not only did she tell me about all the upcoming RH releases for this spring, but she also gave me THREE ARCS. I don’t think I have ever been so excited. One book she got me stoked about is An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir which releases this month! (YAY!)

Speaking of…let’s talk about what other reads make their debut this month.

1. Kissing Ted Callahan (And Other Guys) by Amy Spalding
Releases April 7th by Poppy

Kissing Ted Callahan (and other guys)

via Goodreads

I was lucky enough to receive an advanced readers copy of this book from Poppy and NetGalley. I absolutely loved Spalding’s portrayal of teenage life and her main character, Riley, is laugh-out-loud funny. You can read more of my thoughts on Kissing Ted Callahan here.

Sneak out. Make out. Rock out.

Riley and her best guy friend, Reid, have made a pact: they’ll help each other pursue their respective crushes, make something happen, and document the details in a shared notebook.

While Reid struggles with the moral dilemma of adopting a dog to win over a girl’s heart, Riley tries to make progress with Ted Callahan, the guy she’s been obsessed with forever. His floppy hair! His undeniable intelligence! But between a chance meeting with a fellow musician in a record store and a brief tryst with a science-geek-turned-stud-not to mention Ted’s own tentative attentions-cute guys are suddenly popping up everywhere. How did she never notice them before?! As their love lives go from zero to sixty in the blink of an eye, Riley and Reid’s pact may prove to be more than they bargained for.

Filled with cute dogs, cute boys, and a few awkward hookups, this hilarious tale from Amy Spalding chronicles the soaring highs and embarrassing lows of dating in high school.

Click here to purchase.

2. Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Releases April 7th by Balzer + Bray

Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agena

via Goodreads

This read caught my eye a few weeks ago with its interesting and semi-creepy cover. I have also seen it pictured multiple times with Oreos. I mean… you can’t pass up anything regarding Oreos!

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

Incredibly funny and poignant, this twenty-first-century coming-of-age, coming out story—wrapped in a geek romance—is a knockout of a debut novel by Becky Albertalli.

Click here to purchase.

3. An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
Releases April 28th by Razorbill

An Ember in the Ashes

via Goodreads

I foresee this being the biggest book this year. (I know that is quite the statement, but I have heard nothing but amazing things about this read.)

Set in a terrifyingly brutal Rome-like world, An Ember in the Ashes is an epic fantasy debut about an orphan fighting for her family and a soldier fighting for his freedom. It’s a story that’s literally burning to be told. LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution. ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor. When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself. 

Click here to purchase.

4. Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley
Releases April 28th by HarperCollins

Magonia

via Goodreads

Neil Gaiman’s Stardust meets John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars in this fantasy about a girl caught between two worlds…two races…and two destinies.

Aza Ray is drowning in thin air. 

Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live. 

So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn’t think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name.

Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia. 

Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—and as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war is coming. Magonia and Earth are on the cusp of a reckoning. And in Aza’s hands lies the fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?

Click here to purchase.

5. In A World Just Right by Jen Brooks
Releases April 28th by Simon & Schuster for Young Readers

In a World Just Right

via Goodreads

Imagination takes on new meaning for a uniquely talented teen in this debut novel that is a breathtaking blend of contemporary, fantasy, and romance. Sometimes Jonathan Aubrey wishes he could just disappear. And as luck—or fate—would have it, he can. Ever since coming out of a coma as a kid, he has been able to create alternate worlds. Worlds where he is a superhero, or a ladies’ man, or simply a better version of himself. That’s the world he’s been escaping to most since sophomore year, a world where he has everything he doesn’t have in real life: friends, a place of honor on the track team, passing grades, and most importantly, Kylie Simms as his girlfriend. But when Jonathan confuses his worlds senior year and tries to kiss the real Kylie Simms, everything unravels. The real Kylie actually notices Jonathan…and begins obsessing over him. The fantasy version of Kylie struggles to love Jonathan as she was created to do, and the consequences are disastrous. As his worlds collide, Jonathan must confront the truth of his power and figure out where he actually belongs—before he loses both Kylies forever. 

Click here to purchase.

6. The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey
Releases April 28th by Delacorte Press

The Girl at Midnight

via Goodreads

For readers of Cassandra Clare’s City of Bones and Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone, The Girl at Midnight is the story of a modern girl caught in an ancient war.

Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she’s ever known.

Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she’s fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it’s time to act.

Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the Firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. It will be no easy task, but if life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it’s how to hunt down what she wants . . . and how to take it.

But some jobs aren’t as straightforward as they seem. And this one might just set the world on fire.

Click here to purchase.

What are you reading this month?


All opinions are my own and are not endorsed or affiliated with any company or organization.