Saturday, February 29, 2020

DNF&Y [26]

DNF&Y is used to explain why I gave up on certain books, and what about them just didn't work for me. What I disliked about a book might be something you love, so it helps to share your thoughts even when they're negative! If you would like additional information, please click on the DNF&Y tab at the top. If you want to join, you can link up at the bottom!

There were no DNFs for me this month! Yay! I love it when that happens. What about you? Were there any books you just couldn't finish this month?

A few of my February favorites:
  1. What I Carry by Jennifer Longo (★★★★★) Click here for the review!
  2. Hawkeye: Freefall #1 by Matthew Rosenberg, Kim Jacinto, Otto Schmidt (★★★★★)
  3. Jessica Jones: Blind Spot #1 by Kelly Thompson, Valerio Giangiordano, Mattia de Iulis (★★★★★)
  4. If... by Sarah Perry (★★★★★) Click here for the review!

*Share your DNF&Y post! Please leave the direct link to your DNF&Y post and not just your blog's URL. Thank you for participating and happy reading!

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

My Weekly Pull [111] & Can't Wait Wednesday [81]

My Weekly Pull is something I do every Wednesday to show which comics I had pulled for me that week! If you're into comics, or you're looking to start, please join me! If you decide to do your own post, there's a link-up at the bottom. I would love to stop by and check it out!
Amazing Spider-Man Daily Bugle #2 by Mat Johnson, Mack Chater, Niko Henrichon
Ant-Man #2 by Zeb Wells, Dylan Burnett, Eduard Petrovich
Folklords #4 by Matt Kindt, Matt Smith, David Rubin

Hidden Society #1 by Rafael Scavone, Rafael Albuquerque
Jessica Jones Blind Spot #4 by Kelly Thompson, Mattia De lulis, Valerio Giangiordano
Jim Henson's Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance #6 by Adam Cesare, French Carlomagno, David Peterson

Star #2 by Kelly Thompson, Javier Pina, Carmen Carnero
Star Wars #3 by Charles Soule, Jesus Saiz, RB Silva
Tarot #3 by Alan Davis, Paul Renaud

Jacob's comics for the week!
Amazing Spider-Man #40 by Nick Spencer, Iban Coello, Ryan Ottley
Dying is Easy #3 by Joe Hill, Martin Simmonds, Gabriel Rodriguez
Punisher Soviet #4 by Garth Ennis, Jacen Burrows, Paolo Rivera
Ravencroft #2 by Frank Tieri, Angel Unzueta, Jose Luis, Kyle Hotz, Dan Brown
Scream Curse of Carnage #4 by Clay McLeod Chapman, Chris Mooneyham, Garry Brown, Ryan Stegman

Spawn #305 by Todd McFarlane, Jason Shawn Alexander

I forgot to order this one the week it was released, so I'm inclding it in this batch!
Shades of Magic: The Steel Prince: The Rebel Army #3 by V.E. Schwab, Andrea Olimpieri, Enrica Eren Angiolini

Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings, that highlights upcoming releases that we're anticipating and excited to read. It's a spinoff of the feature Waiting on Wednesday that was hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1984815318/ref=as_li_qf_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=doyoudogear-20&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=1984815318&linkId=44f65821318b8e4873542c93c4077c69
Tornado Brain by Cat Patrick
Expected publication: May 5th 2020

Synopsis (via Goodreads): In this heartfelt and powerfully affecting coming of age story, a neurodiverse 7th grader is determined to find her missing best friend before it's too late.

Things never seem to go as easily for thirteen-year-old Frankie as they do for her twin sister, Tess. Unlike Tess, Frankie is neurodiverse. In her case, that means she can't stand to be touched, loud noises bother her, she's easily distracted, she hates changes in her routine, and she has to go see a therapist while other kids get to hang out at the beach. It also means Frankie has trouble making friends. She did have one--Colette--but they're not friends anymore. It's complicated.

Then, just weeks before the end of seventh grade, Colette unexpectedly shows up at Frankie's door. The next morning, Colette vanishes. Now, after losing Colette yet again, Frankie's convinced that her former best friend left clues behind that only she can decipher, so she persuades her reluctant sister to help her unravel the mystery of Colette's disappearance before it's too late.

A powerful story of friendship, sisters, and forgiveness,

Tornado Brain is an achingly honest portrait of a young girl trying to find space to be herself.

*Share your My Weekly Pull post! Please leave the direct link to your My Weekly Pull post and not just your blog's URL. Thank you for participating and happy reading! 

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Foul Is Fair (Foul Is Fair, #1) by Hannah Capin

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1250239540/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2&linkCode=ll1&tag=doyoudogear-20&linkId=3925ae2e09ce9b4bb3ca85c9a5c83a94&language=en_US
Synopsis (via Goodreads): Elle and her friends Mads, Jenny, and Summer rule their glittering LA circle. Untouchable, they have the kind of power other girls only dream of. Every party is theirs and the world is at their feet. Until the night of Elle’s sweet sixteen, when they crash a St. Andrew’s Prep party. The night the golden boys choose Elle as their next target.

They picked the wrong girl.

Sworn to vengeance, Elle transfers to St. Andrew’s. She plots to destroy each boy, one by one. She’ll take their power, their lives, and their control of the prep school’s hierarchy. And she and her coven have the perfect way in: a boy named Mack, whose ambition could turn deadly.

Foul is Fair is a bloody, thrilling revenge fantasy for the girls who have had enough. Golden boys beware: something wicked this way comes.

"So I say it, stupid and bold in one quick breath: 'Promise me you love me.'
He says, 'I promise.'
He says, 'I've never loved anyone more.'"
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product.

I was supposed to review this book for a blog tour, but didn't want my negative feelings (few, but significant) to detract from the purpose of the promotion. However, today's the last day of the tour, so here's what I thought about Foul Is Fair.

Initially, I thought a Macbeth retelling (of sorts) would make a brilliant book, but there were too many unbelievable aspects for me to fully immerse myself in the story. The entire thing takes place over a two week period, and that just wasn't enough time for Jade to do everything she did. Yes, the author managed to squeeze it into her story, but realistically, I don't think it would have been possible. The police, people's parents, the school... someone would have said or done something. Surely people weren't that clueless.

There's actually very little adult involvement throughout the book, which was also very surprising. I understand that the girl's parents were a little shady and a lot crooked, but their lack of participation in what was happening felt off. They verbally claimed to be there, but were rarely physically present. The same can be said about the teachers, detectives, and anyone else with the authority to actually do something - - they simply weren't around.

I'm happy that there's a book out there that shows girls fighting for themselves, and righting the wrongs done to them, but murder is an extreme reaction. Regardless of whether or not the girls thought the boys would get away with it, killing people shouldn't have been an immediate response to a problem. It was an odd perspective, that's for sure. We see mean girls being ruthless and cunning, so you dislike how awful they can be, but you also feel sorry for what happened to them. It was a weird paradox, but one that I found to be very interesting. You don't have to like someone to understand their motives, and you don't have to agree with their motives to understand their reasoning.

Mack. Nothing about Mack made sense. He fell hard and fast for a girl he barely knew (seriously, like 5 minutes), and he was professing his love within a matter of days. Why was he so quick to love a girl that had no past and a million secrets? What about Jade made him feel like he couldn't live without her? He did some pretty extreme things for a girl he new nothing about. Why? Did I miss something about his past? Should the author have developed his character more? All of the other characters I understood. I might not have liked who they were or what they did, but I understood their motives and rationalizations. Mack was a huge question mark.
  • Foul Is Fair was incredibly suspenseful, but also somewhat predictable. 
  • Jade, Jenny, Summer, and Mads were fascinating and brutal characters that I wanted to know more about. 
  • I love how the author described people - - especially the coven - - and her writing was both melodic and sinful. Capin conveyed her story in a way that felt inevitable. 
  • Everything was tainted by that night, and even going forward it will be a bruise that never fades from their memories. Jade may have proven she wasn't broken, but she couldn't hide all of the cracks her attackers left behind.
If you like retellings, Foul Is Fair is an original take on an old story. I like that the author chose to show girl's fighting back, and refusing to stay silent about what about happened to them. They raged, they destroyed, and they got even. It was extreme, but that's what will make this book stand out from others like it. It wasn't realistic, but I'm sure it's a secret wish more than a few people carry in their hearts. This book gives you justice for rape victims, for those who have been silenced by fear, and for the people who have been wronged by a justice system that's supposed to be fair and honorable. This book is Revenge. (★★★⋆☆)

Thursday, February 20, 2020

What I Carry by Jennifer Longo

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0553537725/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2&linkCode=ll1&tag=doyoudogear-20&linkId=445f459c7a2ee2767f514d490d0cfd0c&language=en_US
Synopsis (via Goodreads): For readers of Robin Benway's Far From the Tree, a powerful and heartwarming look at a teen girl about to age out of the foster care system.

Growing up in foster care, Muir has lived in many houses. And if she's learned one thing, it is to Pack. Light.
Carry only what fits in a suitcase.
Toothbrush? Yes.
Socks? Yes.
Emotional attachment to friends? foster families? a boyfriend? Nope!
There's no room for any additional baggage.
Muir has just one year left before she ages out of the system. One year before she's free. One year to avoid anything--or anyone--that could get in her way.

Then she meets Francine. And Kira. And Sean.


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I received an ARC as a gift. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product.

What I Carry was a brilliant, fantastic read! I am so happy and thankful my #otspsecretsister gifted it to me! Before receiving it in one of my boxes, I wasn't aware this book even existed, which is a tragedy, since it was absolutely perfect for me. I'm a fan of John Muir and his accomplishments, so all the snippets and quotes from his life and his works were an added bonus. They were gems that weren't hidden, but there for the entire world to find and enjoy.

Muir and Muiriel made this story what it is, and the belief that you should do what you can to help those who can't help themselves. In Muir's case, trees (and nature in general) are defenseless and should be preserved. Muiriel was preparing herself to age out of the system, so she tried not to get attached to other people or places. She stopped caring about being adopted, but she still looked after the other foster kids that she shared homes with. Muiriel didn't keep in touch afterwards (with the exception of Zola), but she did what she could while she was there.

Adults have the power to really screw with a child's perception of the world and themselves, and some automatically assume foster kids are "trouble" or that they did something to get placed in foster care. A child does nothing to end up in foster care. The fact that they're there is partly due to a flawed system, and the blame should be solely placed on the adults in their lives. Adults have failed them in one way or another (either by family members and/or the government), and they shouldn't be blamed for being upset about it their circumstances. They have every right to feel angry, hurt, and betrayed.There's nothing wrong with them, they just don't have a cookie cutter family.

Jennifer Longo said she wrote this book because her daughter asked her to. Her daughter said she wanted a story that was realistic based on her experiences, and that not everyone was molested or abused in foster care. Sometimes, it just sucks. I think the author's personal experiences mixed with her daughter's really made this book something uniquely original. Muiriel's story will be something others can relate to, while also being informational for those with no experience with the subject matter.

I really loved the secondary characters! Francine, Joellen, Kira, Zola, Sean - - it was an amazing group of people that I thoroughly enjoyed reading about. The author manages to squeeze in other important topics throughout the book, and I never felt like she was beating me over the head with the information. Everything flowed from one thing to the next, and I took my time getting to the end.

There's a subtle romance in the book between Sean and Muiriel, but the book focuses on Muiriel and how her experiences in foster care have shaped who she is today. She doesn't want to let herself love or care too deeply, because she's afraid of what that would mean for her future. The plan has always been to get out and make it on her own. Somehow. However, she can't keep herself from caring about the new people in her life that seem to need her just as much as she needs them.

Natan was despicable. Tiana and Katrina were incredibly frustrating. Racist white people and just dumb adults in general made me want to throw things - - but this was all intentional. The author paints a realistic picture of what it's like growing up in foster care, and how broken the system can be. There are good people, like Joellen and Francine, that do what they can to make it better, but there are so many kids... it's impossible to make sure they all end up in a nice home with nice people.

When I finally caught on to why the book was titled the way it was, it added an entirely new layer to my experience with this story. It was well-written, exceptionally realistic, and beautifully rendered.

I could honestly go on and on about how much I loved this book and its characters, and I could probably keep typing about how well the author addressed certain issues, but I'll leave it at this: What I Carry was an amazing, thought-provoking read that I plan on reading again and again. There's something for everyone! Great characters, friendships, a subtle romance with a genuinely good guy, awesome parents and adults, and people fighting for what they believe in. You have characters overcoming obstacles and learning about themselves, school bullies and judgmental educators. It was practically perfect in every way.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

My Weekly Pull [110] & Can't Wait Wednesday [80]

My Weekly Pull is something I do every Wednesday to show which comics I had pulled for me that week! If you're into comics, or you're looking to start, please join me! If you decide to do your own post, there's a link-up at the bottom. I would love to stop by and check it out!

Amazing Mary Jane #5 by Leah Williams, Carlos E. Gomez, Humberto Ramos
Atlantis Attacks #2 by Greg Pak, Ario Anindito, MoNa
Daredevil #18 by Chip Zdarsky, Jorge Fornes, Julian Totino Tedesco

Daredevil #18 by Chip Zdarsky, Jorge Fornes, Paolo Rivera
Deadpool #3 by Kelly Thompson, Chris Bachalo
Dragon Age Blue Wraith #2 by Christina Weir, Nunizio Defilippis, Michael Atiyeh

Family Tree #4 by Jeff Lemire, Phil Hester
Firefly #14 by Greg Pak, Lalit Kumar Sharma, Marc Aspinall
Guardians of the Galaxy #2 by Al Ewing, Juan Cabal, Ivan Shavrin

Undiscovered Country #4 by Charles Soule, Scott Snyder, Giuseppe, Jamie McKelvie

There are a lot of amazing covers this week! My two favorites are Amazing Mary Jane and Guardians of the Galaxy. They're both a little dark, which contrasts from how they usually look. Peter is a goofy guy, and the covers are often colorful and fun. Mary Jane is the Girl Next Door, but this cover makes her look wicked and somewhat unhinged. Love it! 

Jacob's comics for the week!

American Jesus New Messiah #3 by Mark Millar, Top Secret (artists unknown)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #103 by Tom Waltz, Sophie Campbell, Kevin Eastman
Transformers Galaxies #4 by Tyler Bleszinski, Livio Ramondelli
Transformers #17 by Brian Ruckley, Anna Malkova, Bethany McGuire-Smith, Livio Ramondelli

Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings, that highlights upcoming releases that we're anticipating and excited to read. It's a spinoff of the feature Waiting on Wednesday that was hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0316423823/ref=as_li_qf_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=doyoudogear-20&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0316423823&linkId=bb82afb718a5eaf508f619f3ab0ec507
This is My Brain in Love by I.W. Gregorio
Expected publication: April 14th 2020

Synopsis (via Goodreads): Jocelyn Wu has just three wishes for her junior year: To make it through without dying of boredom, to direct a short film with her BFF Priya Venkatram, and to get at least two months into the year without being compared to or confused with Peggy Chang, the only other Chinese girl in her grade.

Will Domenici has two goals: to find a paying summer internship, and to prove he has what it takes to become an editor on his school paper.

Then Jocelyn's father tells her their family restaurant may be going under, and all wishes are off. Because her dad has the marketing skills of a dumpling, it's up to Jocelyn and her unlikely new employee, Will, to bring A-Plus Chinese Garden into the 21st century (or, at least, to Facebook).What starts off as a rocky partnership soon grows into something more. But family prejudices and the uncertain future of A-Plus threaten to keep Will and Jocelyn apart. It will take everything they have and more, to save the family restaurant and their budding romance.

*Share your My Weekly Pull post! Please leave the direct link to your My Weekly Pull post and not just your blog's URL. Thank you for participating and happy reading!