Thursday, April 30, 2015

Monthly Wrap Up - April


It is hard to believe April is almost over. This month has been quite eventful and A LOT OF FUN!
Though I did not manage to read quite as many books as I did in March, I am positively surprised I actually managed with so many even though I was quite busy this month.

BOOKS READ IN APRIL:


Vanished by E.E. Cooper (ARC, review to come on WinterHaven Books)
Rating: 3.5/5

Rating: 4/5
Made You Up by Francesca Zappia (ARC, review to come on WinterHaven Books)
Rating: 3/5
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (Re-read, Review)
Rating: 5/5

Dumplin' by Julie Murphy (ARC, review to come on WinterHaven Books)
Rating: 5/5

Ms. Marvel Vol.1 by G. Willow Wilson
Rating: 4/5

The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne (Review to come)
Rating: 4/5

All Played Out by Cora Carmack (ARC, Review to come on WinterHaven Books)
Rating: 5/5

BOOKS ACQUIRED IN APRIL:

Hate List by Jennifer Brown
Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
The Sin Eater's Daughter by Melissa Salisbury


All Played Out by Cora Carmack (eARC)
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne
Dumplin' by Julie Murphy (eARC)
Ms. Marvel Vol.1: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson


Ash & Bramble by Sarah Prineas (eARC)
 Fans of the Impossible Life by Kate Scelsa (eARC)
More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera (eARC)
Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman (eARC)
What We Saw by Aaron Hartzler (eARC)


I'll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios
Confess by Colleen Hoover
The Royal We by Heather Cocks
Sex Criminals, Vol. 1: One Weird Trick by Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky
 Sex Criminals, Vol.1: Two Worlds, One Cop by Matt Franction & Chip Zdarsky

WHAT I'VE BEEN WATCHING - Notable mentions:


The Staircase (2004, dir. Jean-Xavier de Lestrade) -  This eight part miniseries focuses on the investigation into the murder of a woman called Kathleen Peterson and the indictment of the alleged killer Michael Peterson, Kathleen's husband. After listening to the Serial podcast, I have been increasingly interested about truecrime stories such as this, and found this one extremely interesting due to its heavy focus on the courtroom events and the detailed analysis of what happened the night Kathleen died. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst (2015, dir. Andrew Jarecki) - After watching The Staircase, I wanted to continue my true crime streak with The Jinx, a 2015 crime miniseries from HBO. I have been Jarecki's documentary Capturing the Friedmans, which is absolutely fantastic, so my hopes were really high for this! Though it wasn't as interestingly structured as The Staircase, I found myself getting immersed with the story. AND THAT ENDING! The filmmakers must have been shitting their pants at that point.

Younger (TV Land) - The only reason this show even hit my radar was because of Hilary Duf and my weird obsession with her. After seeing her post about the show on Twitter, I decided to give it a go and THANK GOD I DID because Younger is AMAZING! And hey, looking at this does not hurt either.


Grey's Anatomy - SHONDA RHIMES, WHY!!??!?!?! Even if you don't watch this show, you probably know what I am talking about. I have been watching Grey's Anatomy since it started and yeah, this feels bad. But at the same time, the hints were there, so it did not come as a complete surprise. And well, it still does not hurt as bad as what happened to McSteamy.

OTHER UPDATES:


Oulun Kärpät, FINNISH CHAMPIONS 2015 - They did it again! And this year I was back home to see it all! This team is so incredibly important for me and I am so glad that once again hard work paid off. 

My baby is all grown up - Well, she's still a puppy, but much bigger than the last time I posted pictures of her. 

Undisclosed Podcast - I posted about my obsession with Serial at the begining of this year in one of my wrap ups. Undisclosed is also focused on the Adnan Syed case, but rather than investigating the events through narrative format, it looks deeper into the evidence via investigation of evidence. The second episode was posted on Monday of this week and new episodes are available every other week. Please note that if you haven't listened to Serial, this probably won't make any sense for you. So listen to Serial first!! You won't regret it.

I AM DONE  - No biggie, but I am done with my undergraduate degree! I returned my dissertation and my last assessments on the last day of March and now I'm just waiting for the results and the official graduation, which will take place on 10th of July. My plans for post-grad life are still open and I'm waiting to hear from a couple of schools. But for now, I am enjoying my freedom back home in Finland. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (#23): Carry On by Rainbow Rowell (October 6, 2015 by St. Martin's Griffin)


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
For more information, click here.



Rainbow Rowell continues to break boundaries with Carry On, an epic fantasy following the triumphs and heartaches of Simon and Baz from her beloved bestseller Fangirl.

Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story — but far, far more monsters.
BEFORE I SAY ANYTHING ELSE LET ME JUST SAY THAT ANYTHING RAINBOW ROWELL COMES UP WITH, I AM IN!
"triumphs and heartaches of Simon and Baz"

"he can't stop worrying about the evil git"

"a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama"

"just as much kissing and talking as you'd expect from a Rainbow Rowell story"  
What are you waiting for this week? 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday (#26) - Top Ten Books Which Feature Characters Who Are Struggling With Grief



A Suicide Survivor - someone coping with the shock and grieve that accompany the loss of a loved one to suicide. Due to the social stigma associated with suicide, survivors are often unable to cope with their loss and grief using normal support systems, which makes the healing process even more difficult. 

It has been estimated that for every suicide "there are seven to ten people intimately affected."

The books are in no particular order of preference.


1. The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

The way Cynthia Hand writes grief blew my mind away. The Last Time We Say Goodbye follows Lex as she tries to come to terms with the suicide of her brother. Hand writes about the reality of a suicide survival so realistically, especially when it comes to the reactions and actions of those around Lex. As someone who has lost a loved one to suicide, I appreciated Hand's honesty.This one DEFINITELY made me cry!

2. Hold Still by Nina LaCour

I read this one back in March of 2010, so my memory of it is a bit hazy, but I do remember it leaving quite an impression on me. Hold Still tells the story of Caitlin as she comes to terms with the suicide of her best friend Ingrid through the journal Ingrid has left behind for her. Though it is about grief, it is also about new chances, new friends and even new love. LaCour's writing style comes close to poetry at points, and I remember being very impressed by the characterization. 

3. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

This is not as clearly about a suicide survivor as the four other books I feature this week, but I wanted to include it nevertheless because I was VERY impressed by this book. It is narrated via dual narratives of Hannah, a girl who has committed suicide, and Clay, a guy that was crushing on Hannah and that has now been reached by Hannah via cassette tapes that explain why Hannah decided to kill herself. Asher uses foreshadowing brilliantly and the story is full of intrigue. This one will definitely stay in your mind for a LONG time.
4. Saving June by Hannah Harrington

I was not quite sure what to expect from this book, but wow, was I surprised. This one follows Harper whose older sister June killed herself just a week before her high school graduation. No one seems to know why June did so because everything seemed to be alright. When Harper's divorced parents want to divide June's ashes, Harper decides to make her sister's dream come true and she takes the ashes to California. On her way there she meets Jake, a guy who has a surprising connection with June and as they get closer to California, the more Harper starts to learn about her sister. Harrington writes so well about the confusion and anger that often follows suicide and about the desire to keep going, even when it hurts like hell.

5. Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson

Lia and Cassie both want to be the skinniest girl in their high school. Then Cassie is found dead from a hotel room (not directly as a cause of suicide, but I want to count this one in this category... you'll get why if you have read this one!) and Lia starts to blame herself - Cassie tried to call her 33 times and she never answered. Though the story and the characterization are amazing, what really impressed me was Anderson's use of language and the vividness of her prose. Even if the story does not catch your interest, you should definitely read this just for the masterful use of the English language.

Five books that feature a character struggling with the grief caused by a loved one through circumstances other than suicide

   6. Dumplin' by Julie Murphy (upcoming release)

I was fortunate enough to get a chance to read and review Dumplin' early for Winter Haven Books, the blog I am an contributor for. The moment I heard about this book, I was excited! And oh my, this book was perfection. The reason I chose it for this list is the fact that the main character Willowdean is going through the grief that was caused by the death of her aunt, a woman much more like her than her mother. Whereas her aunt never took risks and said 'no' to things because of her weight and the way she looked, Willowdean knows that her aunt would never want her to be embarassed of how she looks. Dumplin' is such an empowering read and definitely a book that I will re-read again and again.

7. In Honor by Jessi Kirby

Okay, yeah, one reason I included this one on this week list is the fact that the love interest of the main character reminds me of Tim Riggins from FNL. In Honor follows Honor who, after receiving the last letter her brother Finn wrote to her from Iraq, decides to travel to see Kyra Kelly, a famous pop star and her brother's celebrity crush. She is joined by Rusty,  Finn's best friend, and as they travel on, they start to connect and share their grief over the loss of Finn. 

8. The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

The Truth About Forever is a meaningful book for me in the sense that it was the first Sarah Dessen book I ever read. It follows Macy whose is grieving the lost of her father and expecting her summer to be both long and quiet. As a result of a chain on unexpected events Macy finds herself working for a catering company and as she spends more time with new friends and a new guy in her life, she starts to find ways to go through the death of her father. 

9. Amy & Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

After Amy's dad died in a car accident her mother decided that it would do the family some good to chance scenery which results in a move from California to Connecticut. Amy is not looking forward to the move, especially after she is told that instead of flying across the country, she will have to do the trip on road. The problem is that she has not driven a car since her father died. To help with the long road trip, Amy is accompanied by Roger, an old family friend who also needs to make the trip from California to the East Coast. Though there is a fantastic love story here, it is also a brilliant book about a girl who tries to figure out her world after the loss of someone she has loved dearly. I cried so many times while reading this one!

10. Full Measures by Rebecca Yarros

When I read this one, I wasn't overly familiar with the new adult genre. I did not quite know what to expect and I must admit I was a bit prejudiced just because the cover seems a bit of a cliche for me. I am glad that I did not let my prejudices take control, because this book was amazing! It follows Ember whose father dies during service. The emotions connected to Ember's grief are so raw and real and seriously, once 10% of this book had passed, I had already cried like a baby. There's also a perfect romance here with a handsome and charming HOCKEY player called Josh. Seriously, you all need to read about Josh! He is PERFECT!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Bout of Books 13 SIGN UP


It's almost Bout of Books time again! 
 
For the past four years, I have always been somewhat busy during the reading week, either actively working on something for university or at least thinking about something university related. Well, now things are a bit different with me being done with my undergraduate degree and just waiting for the results. There is nothing I need to work on or thinking about. Which means that this year I might have actually a chance to read a fair amount.
 
I haven't planned what I will read yet, but if you have any recommendations for good and short books, give me a shout! 
 
Are you participating on Bout of Books? What are you planning to read?
 
If you are interested about Bout of Books and want to join in the fun, click here!

Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles #2) by Marissa Meyer

Release Date: February 5, 2013
Info about the author: Goodreads - Twitter - Website
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Age group: YA
Pages: 454
Buy the book: Amazon - Book Depository

Description (from Goodreads):

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison--even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive. Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.


After completely falling in love with Cinder – the characters, the fictional world that Meyer has created, Meyer’s writing – I simply had to pick up Scarlet the moment I finished with the first book of the series. I find reviewing series quite hard because I don’t want to give out any spoilers, but I’ll try to best to just give you a generic idea of what this book is about.

So in Scarlet, we are introduced to Scarlet Benoit, a French girl living in a farm with her grandmother. Scarlet’s grandma has gone missing, and it seems like the police are not extremely interested in putting effort into finding the woman who has a reputation of being a bit loony and eccentric. But Scarlet knows that her grandmother wouldn’t just have left without saying a word to Scarlet, and she is determined to find her grandmother, with or without the help of the authorities.

Enter Wolf, a street fighter with some possible information about Scarlet’s grandmother. Scarlet has a difficult time trusting strangers, especially the dangerous looking and attractive Wolf who could easily snap her into two pieces. Scarlet soon realizes that despite the fact that she might not trust Wolf, she must join forces with him in order to reach her grandmother and more the she learns about where Wolf comes from, she starts to realize that she might not know her grandmother at all.

Back in New Beijing, Cinder is attempting a prison break. Soon Thorne, an American prisoner, is dragged to the action as well, and they find themselves running away from the authorities. Prince Kai, now an Emperor, has been given an ultimatum from Levana, and time is running out – if he does not manage to fill the demands of the Lunar queen, the earth will be in grave danger.

I feel like in general, Scarlet was a bit slower than Cinder. With Cinder I felt like every single page was extremely action-packed and exciting, whereas with this there were a couple of slow parts I kind of struggled with. Since I loved Kai in the first book, I was kind of sad to see that his character had been kind of diminished into a small side character. Unlike Cinder, which was very much tied down to Cinder and the New Beijing setting, Scarlet moves around between characters and locations, and at first it was kind of distracting, but once I got used to the huge jumps, I was fine with it. Though I love Cinder as a character, I was kind of sad that Scarlet did not get a whole book to herself. But on the other hand, not knowing more about Cinder would have sucked as well.

I obviously fell in love with Thorne – he’s funny and handsome and I literally cannot wait to know more about him and see how he develops as a character. I also loved the fact that though he thought Cinder was attractive and all, there really was not threat for a love triangle because of Cinder’s feelings for Kai. Don’t get me wrong, I do like love triangles, but it’s refreshing to read one without once in a while.

I know opinions of about Wolf vary – some completely love him, whereas some don’t trust him. I found him to be an interesting character, and I feel like reading the novella about him (The Queen’s Army) really helped me to connect with the character and to understand him and his actions. I read the novella before I started with Scarlet since it is labelled as #1.5, but if you want to keep Wolf’s background as a mystery, I recommend that you restrain yourself from reading it.

Though Scarlet is badass and interesting as a character, I kind of felt distanced from her for some reason. I liked her and I felt for her, but I did not really connect with her in any level, at least not in the same way I for example connected with Cinder already during the first book. I hope that we get to know more about her in Cress because I would like to know more about her and maybe find that connection then.

All in all, Scarlet was a really enjoyable read and a great sequel to Cinder. I will definitely keep going with this series and can’t wait to read Cress. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Book Review: A Darker Shade of Magic (A Darker Shade of Magic #1) by V.E. Schwab

Release date: February 24, 2015
Info about the author: Goodreads - Twitter - Website
Publisher: Tor Books
Age group: Adult
Pages: 400
Buy the book: Amazon - Book Depository

Description (from Goodreads):

Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit.

Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London - but no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her 'proper adventure'.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — trickier than they hoped.






am not a big fantasy reader, mostly due to the fact that I often find it extremely hard to relate to the characters in fantastical settings that just feel so out of reach for me. With Harry Potter and Ready Player One as exceptions, all of my all time favorite books are somehow connected to reality and they all are titles that I can relate to on some sort of level. Because of my ever-present need to find characters and stories that I can insert myself into, stories that can make me feel something that I have felt in my own life or I can think of feeling, I have stuck to contemporary reads and character driven stories. Since I always associate fantasy with plot-driven storylines and excessive world-building, I have sort of distanced myself from it. But once in a while, the hype reaches me and I feel like I must venture out of my comfort zone to see what all the buzz is about.

A Darker Shade of Magic was my first V.E. Schwab read, but it definitely won't be my last. Very early on in the book, I noticed how character-driven it actually is and how well Schwab blends together world-building and character relationships, thus making it a book that someone who is not ordinarily a fantasy reader can really delve into as well. Schwab's fictional world is so imaginative and well-developed, yet it also left me questioning just the right amount, which means that I will definitely want to keep going with this series.

A Darker Shade of Magic follows Kell, a young magician with an ability to travel between the parallel universes and Lila, a young woman supporting herself through thievery while dreaming about a future as a pirate with her own ship. The parallel universes in the novel, Grey London, Red London, White London and Black London are all very distinctively described and build, though the reader is left with some questions, especially about Black London, which probably will be answered in the following novels within the series. I loved seeing the different Londons, first through the eyes of Kell, to whom they are part of his ordinary life. He is used to traveling between the different realities, seeing the different Royals in every parallel London. When his roads cross with Lila, seeing the Londons again through her eyes gives the locations new life and further prove Schwab's talent as a world builder and an excellent writer.

Both Kell and Lila are such interesting, well-developed characters. They feel much older than they actually are, probably due to their difficult, eventful lives. Though Kell is treated by the Red London Royal family as a family member, he often feels like he is just an object for the family, a magical entity that they can use to prove their might. The exception is Rhy, the Prince of Red London, who Kell really seems as his brother. Rhy is such an interesting character – a bit of a playboy yet quite vulnerable and dependent on Kell. Lila's life at Grey London does not match the luxury of Kell's life within the Court – out of necessity, she has learned to take care of herself through thievery and mischieve. Lila is independent and strong and hungry for adventure. In short, she is one of those kickass characters that alone makes this book worth a read.

At points, A Darker Shade of Magic reads almost like a historical fiction piece, especially when it comes to the different Londons and their histories. I really hope this aspect is something that Schwab will further develop within the sequels that will follow. A Darker Shade of Magic wasn't a book that I was able to binge read on one sitting, just because it is so full of detail that I simply had to put it down at points to think about it.

Though A Darker a Shade of Magic did not convert me into a fantasy reader, it make me more open-minded about the possibilities of fantasy fiction. I definitely want to read Vicious now and I am certainly more open to reading more fantasy titles. Schwab is such a talented writer who has ability to weave into her stories history, cross-dressing thiefs who dream of pirate ships and magic while at the same time being able to be just a right amount of humoristic. I highly recommend this to everyone, especially those of you who like me usually shy away from fantasy. 

Look how gorgeous the second cover looks. Too bad the UK covers are not as gorgeous.

  


Thursday, April 9, 2015

Throwback Thursday (#4): Open Road Summer by Emery Lord


Let's travel back to April 2, 2014 and my review of Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
 
Release date: April 15, 2014
Publisher: Walker Children's/Bloomsbury US
Age group: YA
Pages: 368
 
Description (from Goodreads):
 
After breaking up with her bad-news boyfriend, Reagan O'Neill is ready to leave her rebellious ways behind. Her best friend, country superstar Lilah Montgomery, is nursing a broken heart of her own. Fortunately, Lilah's 24-city tour is about to kick off, offering a perfect opportunity for a girls-only summer of healing hearts and break-up ballads.

But when Matt Finch joins the tour as its opening act, his boy-next-door charm proves difficult for Reagan to resist, despite her vow to live a drama-free existence. This summer, Reagan and Lilah will navigate the ups and downs of fame and friendship as they come to see that giving your heart to the right person is always a risk worth taking.

A fresh new voice in this growing genre, Emery Lord's gorgeous debut hits all the right notes of contemporary romance.
 
MY REVIEW FROM APRIL 2, 2014
 
THIS. BOOK. WAS. PERFECT. 
SO SO SO SO SO PERFECT.

Reagan's heart has been broken and her rebellious spirit and desire for fast life of parties and booze has driven her to a point in which she realizes that in order to start again, she needs to leave home behind and look for a new beginning. When Reagan's best friend, a rising country superstar invites Reagan to join her on her summer tour the summer vacation before Reagan's senior year, Reagan packs her bags and moves to the road with Dee (to public known was Lilah). The US-wide tour of different cities and arenas, stadiums and audiences gives Reagan the perfect chance to start again, to clear her head, and to spend time with her best friend.

Dee's life isn't only rainbows and sunshine either. Though she loves her career, the publicity of it all gets more and more difficult for her - everything she does, wears and says is inspected by the public. Like Reagan, she is also suffering from heart break and having her best friend on the tour with her gives them a chance to spend time together and forget boys for a while. But when rumors about her relationships, both past and current, start to appear on magazines, the record label has to maneuver an emergency publicity trick to keep up Dee's "girl-next-door" image. 

Perfect, charming, talented and handsome Matt Finch with his good looks and boy-next-door charm is invited to the tour to open for Dee while posing as his potential new lover. Dee welcomes Matt to the tour with open arms - they are friends, and she knows that she can trust Matt. And though they don't have any romantic feelings towards each other, they don't completely say no to the faux relationship, just to make Dee's publicist's live a bit easier. Reagan is not so sure about Matt - he is handsome, kind and more talented than she thought he would be, but she still feels like Matt might be there just to gain more publicity and push for his own career. But as they spend more time together, it becomes more and more difficult for Reagan to say no to Matt and his charm. 

I loved everything about this book. Reagan is strong, funny and independent, but also has some issues she needs to deal with. She is prejudiced, stubborn and afraid to show her true nature to people. She has trust issues and it seems like the only person she can count on is Dee. The friendship between Dee and Reagan is not perfect, but it is clear they love and trust each other. When Matt joins the tour, he is still going through a major loss and heart break, but the more and more he spends time with Reagan, he realizes that he might he healing, or at least enjoying life again. 

I loved how Emery Lord takes her time to establish these characters and these relationships. With a concept like this there is always the danger of being too cliche, too predictable and cheesy. I feel like she avoids this by creating real and honest characters who have their flaws and obstacles. Though Matt is dreamy, he is not perfect. Though Reagan is witty and strong, she is also temperamental and rebellious to an extent that hurts people around her. Lord's characterization and language are spot on and the way she builds the story makes you want to read the book on one sitting. The lyrics and the world of music are excellently integrated to the story and really give more insight to both the world these characters inhabit and as well as the relationships between them.

So put some country music on, kick back and enjoy this wonderful debut by a very talented author! 

I fell so in love with this book that I had to make an 8tracks mix inspired by it. This will, for sure, be one of my main playlists for the summer.




Thursday, April 2, 2015

Throwback Thursday (#3): This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen


Let's travel back to December 23, 2010 and my review of This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen
 
 
Publication date: March 8, 2004
Publisher: Speak
Age group: YA
Pages: 345
 
Description (from Goodreads):
 
When it comes to relationships, Remy doesn't mess around. After all, she's learned all there is to know from her mother, who's currently working on husband number five. But there's something about Dexter that seems to defy all of Remy's rules. He certainly doesn't seem like Mr. Right. For some reason, however, Remy just can't seem to shake him. Could it be that Remy's starting to understand what those love songs are all about?
 
 
 
 
MY REVIEW FROM DECEMBER 23, 2010
 
I remember seeing this book for the first time during a time when I had no idea what YA states for. It feels such a long time ago, but actually it isn't. I think it was 2007 when my host sister Ale tried to make me read this book, but for some reason I did not do so. I had read "The Truth about forever" by Dessen, I still remember buying it from the clearance section at Books-a-Million, but for some reason I did not get excited about this one after seeing it. And how stupid I then was.

"This Lullaby" introduces us to Remy who has stopped believing in love. You could think that is is because there are no guys in her life. But it is quite the contrary. Remy has had several boyfriends, I don't think that her fingers and toes would be enough to count them. But it is her mother's several marriages and their failures that has shown her that love is not all that glorious everyone seems to think it is. For years she has been the one planning the weddings and eventually settling the divorces. But now she is over with it. It is the summer after her high school and she is counting the months for her personal freedom= university of Stanford. 

Everything changes when Remy meets Dexter. She first thinks that he is just one of her normal flings, one that lasts until she feels like ending it. But on many ways, Dexter is different. He is so unlike the "ideal" guy of Remy. He does things that she normally hates, but while she is with him, she is able to ignore those things. When her friends start to talk about love, she gets annoyed. But could what she feels for Dexter be love? Or is she even capable of feeling love? Does love even exist?

I really loved this book! Remy was an interesting character to read about because in a way she reminded me of myself. Remy is a control freak and she has totally lost her trust in love. I don't say that I have completely lost my trust in love, I think I have misplaced it (like Remy eventually learns as well) and I just need to find the person who can bring it back to me. My friends always laugh at me because I love romantic movies, books etc. but I am the one who is planning not to get married etc.

Dexter is completely adorable, and even though he has many traits I would not at first look, find attractive at all, I would eventually adore a guy like him. He is a bit of a slacker, but also artistic, funny and oh so optimistic. A total opposite of control freak, pessimistic Remy. It is really interesting to read how the chemistry develops between then, and how eventually, they become to be the perfect match, which Remy tries hard to deny. 

If you are familiar with the other works by Sarah Dessen, you will love this one as well