Review: Leah on the Offbeat (Creekwood #2) – Becky Albertalli


Leah on the Offbeat (Creekwood #2) – Becky Albertalli

Leah on the Offbeat (Creekwood, #2)

Title: Leah on the Offbeat (Creekwood #2)

Author: Becky Albertalli

Release Date: April 24, 2018

Publisher: HarperCollins

Format: Audiobook

Page Number: 343

Source: Scribd

Leah Burke—girl-band drummer, master of deadpan, and Simon Spier’s best friend from the award-winning Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—takes center stage in this novel of first love and senior-year angst.

When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.

So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.

4 out of 5 stars


I listened to this on audiobook on my drive back to college and it made the 5 hour drive FLY by. I always listen to my audiobooks at 1.5x speed, so that’s how I was able to finish it during the drive.

I really enjoyed this book and I think it was a good continuation/conclusion of the Creekwood series. I liked that Simon and the rest of the characters were almost central characters. The story stayed within the friend group which was kind of cool. I wish that I would have read this right after I finished Simon Vs. The Homosapiens Agenda, but I don’t think it was out when I read it.

I was kind of annoyed with how much swearing there was throughout this. It was so unnecessary and really didn’t have anything to do with the plot of the story. I think unnecessary swearing is one of my biggest pet peeves, so this could just be me being hyper-focused, but…

I think Leah was a cool character and some of her stories and scenes were very relatable. I find it kind of interesting that the whole book is about Leah being bisexual, but there wasn’t much about her wanting to be with a guy. She was very focused on being with a girl, which is fine, but I didn’t see how it was about her bisexuality, though.

I loved seeing Simon and Bram from the first book because they’re just so cute. I really think that that is one of my favorite relationships from a YA book.

Series:

Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda (Creekwood #1)

REREAD Review: City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments #3) – Cassandra Clare


City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments #3) – Cassandra Clare

City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3)

Title: City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments #3)

Author: Cassandra Clare

Release Date: March 4, 2009

Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry

Format: Paperback

Page Number: 541

Source: Barnes and Noble

To save her mother’s life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters; never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family’s past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he’s willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City – whatever the cost?

5 out of 5 stars


Again, this is a continuation of my reread of this series.

I LOVE THIS SERIES.

These are seriously my favorite books and I love rereading them. I pick up on so many more little things that I missed the times I’ve read these before. I love finding little Easter eggs throughout that make me think about the future books.

This book made me REALLY excited to reread The Dark Artifices series, which will be in a little while because I’m reading them in publication order, but IT’S SO GOOD.

I don’t really have anything productive to say other than to read these books because they’re so dang good.

Series:

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1)

City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments #2)

City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments #4)

Review: Almost Adulting: All You Need to Know to Get It Together (Sort Of) – Arden Rose


Almost Adulting: All You Need to Know to Get It Together (Sort Of) – Arden Rose

Almost Adulting: All You Need to Know to Get It Together (Sort Of)

Title: Almost Adulting: All You Need to Know to Get It Together

Author: Arden Rose

Release Date: March 28, 2017

Publisher: HarperCollins

Format: Hardcover

Page Number: 208

Source: Scribd

For fans of Grace Helbig and Alexa Chung comes a fresh, hilarious guide to growing up your way from social media influencer and lifestyle vlogger Arden Rose.

In Almost Adulting — perfect for budding adults, failing adults, and eaters of microwave mug brownies — Arden tells you how to survive your future adulthood. Topics include:

-Making internet friends who are cool and not murderers

-Flirting with someone in a way to make them think you are cool and not a murderer

-Being in an actual relationship where you talk about your feelings in a healthy manner??? To the other person???????

-Eating enough protein

-Assembling a somewhat acceptable adult wardrobe when you have zero dollars

-Going on adventures without starting to smell

-How sex is supposed to feel, but, like, actually though

By the end of the book — a mash-up of essays, lists, and artwork — you’ll have learned not only how to dress yourself, how to travel alone, how to talk to strangers online, and how to date strangers (in PERSON!), but also how to pass as a real, functioning, appropriately socialized adult.

3 out of 5 stars


Almost Adulting by Arden Rose is just a random hodge-podge of events from Arden’s life, but random in a good way.

Arden Rose is a YouTuber who now lives in LA. She’s mastered the art of not caring what people think and being happy about what she’s doing. I think she’s admirable when it comes to how she’s living her life, but there are obviously some things I would do a little differently.

Arden reminds me of my best friend, Kaitlyn, because they’re both a little free-spirit, like having cute vintage things, have a distinct style, and are confident in who they are. I admire Arden even more because she reminds me of Kaitlyn.

I listened to this on audiobook from Scribd, and I really enjoyed hearing Arden narrate this book. It felt like she was letting you in on some secrets from her life. She is very open and honest with everything in this book.

I liked the chapter where she talked about sex and virginity. Her take on it isn’t exactly like mine, but I loved how open she was about the whole conversation. Her idea is that it’s your body, you can do what you want with it. I agree, and I love that she added that you can have sex if you want, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to. She also talked about how important it is to spread positivity when it comes to talking about bodies.

I think this is a great audiobook and I would recommend it to anyone who likes Arden. I think the next time I see this book in a store I’m going to flip through it so I can see some of the artwork, but I’m glad I could listen to Arden read it.

Also. I love the name Arden.

July Wrapup


  1. The Complete Tales – Beatrix Potter
  2. Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss #3) – Stephanie Perkins *review*
  3. Legend (Legend #1) – Marie Lu *original review* *reread review*
  4. The Art of the Start 2.0: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything – Guy Kawasaki
  5. Simple Matters: Living with Less and Ending Up with More – Erin Boyle *review*
  6. Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1) – Tahereh Mafi *review*
  7. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future – Peter Thiel
  8. Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina – Michaela DePrince *review*
  9. The Thousandth Floor (The Thousandth Floor #1) – Katharine McGee *review*
  10. Experience Psychology – Laura A. King
  11. Prodigy (Legend #2) – Marie Lu *review*
  12. Champion (Legend #3) – Marie Lu *review*

Review: The Bucket List: 1000 Adventures Big & Small – Kath Stathers


The Bucket List: 1000 Adventures Big & Small – Kath Stathers

The Bucket List: 1000 Adventures Big & Small

Title: The Bucket List: 1000 Adventures Big & Small

Author: Kath Stathers

Release Date: April 4, 2017

Publisher: Universe Publishing

Format: Hardcover

Page Number: 496

Source: Birthday Gift

With 1,000 adventures for all ages, it’s never too soon or too late to begin the things you’ve only dreamed of doing.

We all have things we’d like to do–one day–but work, family, school, money, and responsibilities get in the way. This invaluable guide to fun, fantastic, and life-affirming activities features an eclectic range of ideas such as self-improvement, sports-related endeavors, natural wonders, cultural experiences, culinary delights, and more. From glassblowing in the Czech Republic to swimming with dolphins in New Zealand, The Bucket List is the perfect gift for the passionate traveler–an around-the-world, continent-by-continent listing of beaches, museums, monuments, islands, inns, restaurants, mountains, and more.

Each activity is location-specific and as geographically unique as bird-watching in Kenya or driving through clouds in Sri Lanka, as well as other to-dos that can be done anywhere, such as sketching a sunset behind an architectural monument. In addition to classic outdoor pursuits, the book contains advice on how to achieve some of the most popular goals for people of all ages: direct a movie, learn to play an instrument, make pottery, protect an endangered species, name a star, try a new cuisine, or learn a new language. Whether you are more active or laid-back, serious-minded or lighthearted, you are bound to discover new, stimulating activities.

5 out of 5 stars


This book was beautiful and such an amazing read. Traveling in general is something I’m passionate about, so having a whole book dedicated to all the adventures you can take around the world was perfect for me.

There are so many different adventures I want to take right now, but I’m most drawn to those in Europe and in Thailand and the Philippines. I love the history and culture of Europe, and am so excited to go there. I plan on studying abroad, so that will help to cross some of these amazing trips off my bucket list. I also love the idea of tropical travel through Thailand and the Philippines. The beautiful clear waters and cheap accommodations are calling my name!

I recommend this book to anyone who loves traveling and looking at beautiful photography!

Review: Love & Gelato – Jenna Evans Welch


Love & Gelato – Jenna Evans Welch

Love & Gelato

Title: Love & Gelato

Author: Jenna Evans Welch

Release Date: May 3, 2016

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Format: Hardcover

Page Number: 389

Source: Public Library

“I made the wrong choice.”

Lina is spending the summer in Tuscany, but she isn’t in the mood for Italy’s famous sunshine and fairy-tale landscape. She’s only there because it was her mother’s dying wish that she get to know her father. But what kind of father isn’t around for sixteen years? All Lina wants to do is get back home.

But then she is given a journal that her mom had kept when she lived in Italy. Suddenly Lina’s uncovering a magical world of secret romances, art, and hidden bakeries. A world that inspires Lina, along with the ever-so-charming Ren, to follow in her mother’s footsteps and unearth a secret that has been kept for far too long. It’s a secret that will change everything she knew about her mother, her father—and even herself.

People come to Italy for love and gelato, someone tells her, but sometimes they discover much more.

5 out of 5 stars


I loved this book so much. I’m just having such great luck with contemporaries lately!

This book followed a girl named Lina who goes to live with a father she’s never met right outside of Florence after her mother dies of cancer. Lina gets to Italy and realizes that she’s going to have to live in a house at a cemetery. It’s a WWII cemetery and is no longer used for new burials, but still. She goes on her daily morning run and meets a boy her age named Ren. They quickly become friends and she starts spending a lot of time with him. In the meantime, one of her father’s friends gives her a journal from her mother during her time living in Italy. She reads through it piece by piece, but the journal becomes an object of mystery. Her mother explains stories about her time in Italy and Lina realizes her father might not be who she thinks he is…

This reminded me so much of my trip to Italy that I took two years ago. The description of travel was so accurate it almost hurt. Lina’s initial response to walking up to the Duomo in Florence was exactly how I felt. It was amazing.

Her first taste of gelato was exactly how I felt. The small adventures were just as important as the big ones. It was the perfect depiction of having new experiences.

Then there’s Ren. Oh my gosh I love him so much. Right away you know that she’s going to fall for him because she HAS to. He’s cute, half-Italian, quirky. He’s perfect. I love them together.

I love her father. He’s so sweet and loves her so much. I love that it’s not a “typical” familial tie but it works so well.

I love that there’s a little mystery when it comes to the journal.

There was just so much to love about this book and it just makes me want to go travel in Italy again!

Review: I Have Lost My Way – Gayle Forman


I Have Lost My Way – Gayle Forman

I Have Lost My Way

Title: I Have Lost My Way

Author: Gayle Forman

Release Date: March 27, 2018

Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers

Format: Hardcover

Page Number: 258

Source: Public Library

Around the time that Freya loses her voice while recording her debut album, Harun is making plans to run away from everyone he has ever loved, and Nathaniel is arriving in New York City with a backpack, a desperate plan, and nothing left to lose. When a fateful accident draws these three strangers together, their secrets start to unravel as they begin to understand that the way out of their own loss might just lie in help­ing the others out of theirs.

An emotionally cathartic story of losing love, finding love, and discovering the person you are meant to be, I Have Lost My Way is best­selling author Gayle Forman at her finest.

5 out of 5 stars


This book was AMAZING.

This book fulfilled the challenge of ‘read a book with a beautiful spine’ for Booktubeathon. I’m right on track! It’s such an amazing feeling :)

Wow, okay this book was just what I needed. It was the perfect mix of loss, grief, happiness, and love. I just can’t express how beautifully it was written and how it came together so seamlessly.

This story followed three main characters who fatefully meet up when a girl falls off a bridge onto a stranger, and the whole event is witnessed by a boy walking in the park. The girl, Freya, is a musician. She’s about to be known as “famous” because of her YouTube channel and her music deal with one of the biggest producers available. She’s about to really “make it” when she loses her voice. She falls onto a boy named Nathaniel. He is visiting New York City and is just slowly making his way through life. He’s depressed. He doesn’t know what to do. He’s broken. The whole scene is witnessed by a boy named Harun. Harun is about to be sent to Pakistan to find a bride, but he hasn’t told his family his biggest secret. He’s gay, and he’s known since he was 9 years old. He knows they would disown him, so he just runs off for the day trying to get away from his family…

Now, this plot sounds all over the place, but it comes together so beautifully. There are so many little nuances that make it feel so real and right. I’m just so impressed with this book. The friendships that developed were so… real and raw. They needed each other and it was just so perfectly written.

I loved the characters from this book and was so invested right away. I think this book took place over one day, and I loved that it was such a short time line. I just loved so much about this book and was blown away by it. There were so many different layers to the story that just added so many different levels.

I highly recommend this book and can’t wait to read more by Gayle Forman.