Tag Archives: contemporary

[Review] Long Way Down – Jason Reynolds

Book Title: Long Way Down (Standalone)
Author:     Jason Reynolds
Number of pages:  320

Synopsis:

A cannon. A strap.
A piece. A biscuit.
A burner. A heater.
A chopper. A gat.
A hammer
A tool
for RULE

Or, you can call it a gun. That’s what fifteen-year-old Will has shoved in the back waistband of his jeans. See, his brother Shawn was just murdered. And Will knows the rules. No crying. No snitching. Revenge. That’s where Will’s now heading, with that gun shoved in the back waistband of his jeans, the gun that was his brother’s gun. He gets on the elevator, seventh floor, stoked. He knows who he’s after. Or does he?

(re: Goodreads @ Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds)


Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr review:

– A fully formed story with 99% of the words removed, seriously.
– Claustrophobic and introspective realistic fiction with themes of gun violence, power, and family at the heart of it all
– Setting and characters may not be discretely described but they act as vessels to this cyclical story that can apply anywhere

Initial Thoughts

My first verse novel ayyyy.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of Long Way Down from Simon and Schuster Canada and at Book Expo.


Continue reading [Review] Long Way Down – Jason Reynolds

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[Review] The Temptation of Adam – Dave Connis (+ Author Q&A and Giveaway!)

Book Title: The Temptation of Adam (Standalone)
Author:     Dave Connis
Number of pages:  224

Synopsis:

Adam Hawthorne is fine.

Yeah, his mother left, his older sister went with her, and his dad would rather read Nicholas Sparks novels than talk to him. And yeah, he spends his nights watching self-curated porn video playlists.

But Adam is fine.

When a family friend discovers Adam’s porn addiction, he’s forced to join an addiction support group: the self-proclaimed Knights of Vice.

(re: Goodreads @ Temptation of Adam by Dave Connis)

Get Your Copy Today!
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Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr review:

– YA fiction about porn addiction. C’mon now.
– Tackles various issues: addictions (sex/porn, substance use, etc.), sexual assault, divorced households, race relations
– Setting feels very normal (in a good way) and isn’t overly flourished
– Both character-and-plot driven; pacing is slow early on but picks up midway through

Initial Thoughts

Plot aside, Nic Stone was the catalyst for me in reading this…

…I also apologize for this gratuitously long review and Q&A.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of Temptation of Adam from Thomas Allen & Son.


Continue reading [Review] The Temptation of Adam – Dave Connis (+ Author Q&A and Giveaway!)

[Review] Lucky in Love – Kasie West

Book Title: Lucky in Love
Author:     Kasie West
Number of pages:  333

Synopsis:

Maddie doesn’t believe in luck. She’s all about hard work and planning ahead. But one night, on a whim, she buys a lottery ticket. And then, to her astonishment —

She wins!

In a flash, Maddie’s life is unrecognizable. No more stressing about college scholarships. Suddenly, she’s talking about renting a yacht. And being in the spotlight at school is fun… until rumors start flying, and random people ask her for loans. Now, Maddie isn’t sure who she can trust.

Except for Seth Nguyen, her funny, charming coworker at the local zoo. Seth doesn’t seem aware of Maddie’s big news. And, for some reason, she doesn’t want to tell him. But what will happen if he learns her secret?

(re: Goodreads @ Lucky in Love by Kasie West)


Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr review:

– Protagonist (although means well) spends her winnings frivolously, lets people use her for cash, gets angry etc. – gotta be okay with the growth that comes with naivety
– Love interest is somehow unaware of the above
– The Vietnamese rep in this story is basically non-existent (if not for the cover, I would have imagined him as a white boy. full stop.)
– Good inclusion of the importance of familial and academic dynamics in this story
– The dialogue is fluffy af

Initial Thoughts

For your reference: this is not my first Kasie West book but I gave this one a shot because of the male Viet-Am experience I wanted to read about.

I know what you’re thinking “why do you read books you know you’ll dislike, Joey?” Read on to see why.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of Lucky in Love at Book Expo.


Continue reading [Review] Lucky in Love – Kasie West