The Three Books You Shouldn’t Read

Yes, I actually read books. Well if you count screaming and getting so fed up with a book you throw it as reading. And not even in a good way. See, many of you may know I have an obsession with romance. I’m a hopeless romantic. Dream of the day when I meet the guy who makes me feel… whole. So in the mean time I read those books instead to fill that empty hole inside of me. But somewhere in my four years of high school these romance books that I cradled in my arms, that I loved with every fiber of my being, have turned to complete Sugar Honey Ice Tea. And I have given up. Yes, me, Lauren of YA Book Spot, has given up on all cute romance novels. Here are the three books that prove why said romance novels have gone down the sinkhole to hell:

1) Royally Lost by 18530135Angie Stanton

 Dragged on a family trip to Europe’s ancient cities, Becca wants nothing more than to go home. Trapped with her emotionally distant father, over-eager stepmother, and a brother who only wants to hook up with European hotties, Becca is miserable. That is until she meets Nikolai, a guy as mysterious as he is handsome. And she unknowingly finds herself with a runaway prince.

Nikolai has everything a guy could ask for-he’s crown prince, heir to the throne, and girls adore him. But the one thing he doesn’t have…is freedom. Staging a coup, he flees his kingdom and goes undercover on his own European tour.

When Nikolai and Becca meet, it’s their differences that draw them together. Sparks fly as they share a whirlwind of adventures, all the while dodging his royal guard. But Becca’s family vacation ends in a matter of days. Will Nikolai and Becca be forced to say goodbye forever, will his destiny catch up to him, or will they change history forever?

I was desperate. So very desperate for a romance novel that I picked this book up just hoping that it would turn out to be this great book full of laughs and true love. But no, it turned for the worst when the protagonist Becca started speaking. Now, the thing is I love history. I’ve had a 100 average my whole career as a student. I could name Generals from the American Revolution all the way to World War II. I just really love history. Now imagine reading a book with a main protagonist who constantly bashes history. Well, you get Royally Lost.

Instead of Royally Lost, I think the book should be changed to Royal Shit (excuse my language. I just have a lot of anger feels). Becca was nagging, no good, ANNOYING girl who just constantly complained about history. She saw it as useless. “Why live in the past?” She said at one point. BECAUSE WE LEARN FROM OUR PAST MISTAKES. You are in Europe, taking these amazing tours to these historical sites and you couldn’t care less? No, I’m sorry. Excuse me while I go push her off the Pont Du Gard.

One more thing that made me angry would be how easily she just went with Nikolai. “Oh look, a hot European guy who’s speaking to me. Let me totally take him on his offer to explore these random parts of Europe where I have never been! Screw stranger danger!” So maybe Becca didn’t say exactly this, but she sure as hell was acting this way. The  number one rule of Europe is you stay with your group. Even if you hate them and would much rather throw yourself into a bullfight (I may or may not have thought this when I was in Europe), YOU STAY PUT. Yes, Nikolai was a prince, but I could rewrite this entire book as sequel to Taken.

Do not read this book. Becca is naive, dull, and so stupid I swear my freaking lamp knows more than her.

 

182489332)Pulled Under by Michelle Dalton

A shy teen befriends an attractive beach town tourist in this refreshing summertime romance, in the tradition of Sixteenth Summer andSeventeenth Summer.

In the small town of Pearl Beach, Florida, Izzy Lucas needs only her surfboard and the water to be completely happy. She wants nothing to do with parties, popularity contests, or showing her face around the clichéd touristy hangouts. Izzy’s tight group of coworkers at the local surf shop have tried relentlessly to break shy Izzy out of her (sea)shell. But Izzy isn’t interested…until the day Ben Barker walks into the store.

Ben’s from the city. He’s cute, charming, and wants her help adjusting to beach town culture. As the weeks of surfing lessons and pizza shack visits fly by, Izzy and Ben realize their attraction goes beyond mere friendship. But Ben is only in town for three months, and Izzy wonders if this amazing guy is worth stepping out of her comfort zone for what might be the perfect summer romance—or her first heartbreak

My quest for a romance continued and led me to this book. This very boring book. I live by the beach. the smell of the ocean is the best smell in the world. I was intrigued by this book because the beach was in it. But that was the only good thing. The main character Izzy barely grew as a character and I found myself wanting to know more about her friend Sophie than Izzy herself.  Izzy’s relationship with Ben was also anther strike against Pulled Under. They just did nothing for me. Once again there was no growth between the two. Nothing that made their relationship feel real.

I barely made it through the book. And I usually finish a book like this within three hours. I skimmed through Pulled Under and found myself bored even doing that. And that ending? I still don’t understand it.

Yet again I found myself disappointed by another book. I wish there were more cute YA romance books out there. Or at least good ones. I mean, at least it got two stars.

 

Lastly, number 3:

 

18635079How to Meet Boys by Catherine Clark

Find out what happens when you fall for your best friend’s worst enemy in this timeless and hilarious story of a forbidden first love and forever friendship.

Lucy can’t wait to spend the summer at the lake with her best friend, Mikayla. But when Jackson, the boy she’s been avoiding ever since he rejected her, reappears in her life, Lucy wonders if this summer to remember is one she’d rather forget.

Mikayla’s never had much luck talking to boys, but when she (literally) runs into the cutest guy she’s ever seen, and sparks fly, she thinks things might be looking up…until she realizes the adorable stranger is the same boy who broke her best friend’s heart.

As things begin to heat up between Mikayla and the one guy she should avoid, will Lucy be able to keep her cool or will the girls’ perfect summer turn into one hot mess?

Catherine Clark, the author of beach-read favorites Maine Squeeze and Love and Other Things I’m Bad At, has once again crafted a hilarious and spot-on portrayal of what it’s really like to be a teenager. Readers will love this irreverent coming-of-age story…and will be breathlessly turning the pages to find out what happens next.

I give up. I’m waving the white flag because I am done. I never knew it was so hard to write a cute romance novel. I find it sad when I read better stories on Wattpad. I picked up How to Meet Boys by Catherine Clark because (as you can tell) I am desperate for a cute, care-free romance book.

And now I wish I hadn’t.

I always feel this connection with characters who have never had a kiss, or even a date, because I myself (even at 18) never did any of those things either. I was into the book in the beginning because both main characters were like me. Dateless and guyless. Then by page 137 I just gave up. I couldn’t stand Lucy. It was an actual hatred. I found her rude, annoying, and selfish. I skipped her POVs half the time. I think the book would have been better without Lucy’s POV.

Mikayla wasn’t as bad. But dear god YOU ARE 17! STOP ACTING LIKE YOU’RE STILL IN 8TH GRADE. The writing was also terrible. I don’t know if it was me, but half the time I felt as if half the words were spelled wrong. Not only that, but the maturity of the writing was extremely low.

I am so angry that cute books aren’t being written as good anymore. I think authors need to read Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell because she did it right. Take notes too. Cath was that perfect mixture of nerdy/experienced/socially awkward girl. I would not recommend How to Meet Boys to anyone. I couldn’t sit still long enough to read it. I don’t care about insta-love (it really does not bother me), but what I do care is that it’s done right. And sadly, it seems that no one knows how to do it anymore.

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I am telling you right now to not read these books. They are boring, filled with naive characters, and writing that is more 4th grade than high school. If anyone knows a good romance please let me know. I’m getting desperate. Just tell me in the comments. I promise an actual nice review full of fangirling and squealing tomorrow for The Dark World by Cara Lynn Shultz (one of the BEST authors out there).

 

~ Lauren

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Crash into You by Katie McGarry

Hey guys! You remember me? Lauren? No… Wait, are you holding a pitchfork? I’m really not a fan of fire guys. So yeah, I’m sorry for my absence. Senior year sort affects all aspects of life really. Like all I want to do is sleep, eat, and sleep. College applications also took up all my time but I finished those and I’ve been accepted into my college. So yay! But as I stated in my last post (and as you can tell from the picture above) I am here for a review! A very long-awaited review that should have been done awhile ago because I did get the ARC back in July. Now that I think about it I could have done the post and saved it. Oops.

I tried doing a video but all I did was ramble and kept going on about CONNECTIONS with characters and CARS. I doubt you would have cared about pistons, carburetors, and me trying to explain a cool air intake. I ail speak about my connections with characters though.

So I know that I’ve stated my love for Katie McGarry’s books before. There is just so much to them. I’ve loved every single book and I feel like for an author to able to make every book amazing makes them even better. If that makes sense. I was lucky enough to meet Katie McGarry back in June and it had to have been one of the best moments of my life. Here was an author that has had a major impact

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on my life and I was finally able to meet her. I fangirled a lot. I may have said it once before but I don’t remember. Back in October of 2012 my neighborhood was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. And the book that helped me get through it? Pushing the Limits. Ever since then I’ve been hooked to Katie McGarry’s books. Dare You To  was there for me as I was struggling with friendships and feeling alone. As I stated before, I felt connections.

The strongest connection has always been Isaiah. I think it’s because I understand his love for cars. So before I say anything else here is the synopsis:

The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that’s who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers…and she’s just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can’t get him out of her mind. 

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look. 

But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they’ll go to save each other. (Goodreads)

I loved this book. I don’t even know how to put my love for it into words. I tried doing a video but I literally couldn’t. Everything was getting jumbled together and it was turning into an epic fail. This was basically me.

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I just get really exited with this book. 

First off: Rachel. Do you know how awesome it was to FINALLY have a girl character who understood cars? It didn’t even feel forced. I don’t remember the exact line, but it was when Rachel and Isaiah just met and he asked her how she knew  so much about cars. Rachel said she just read books or something like that. I don’t know why I loved that but I did. I think Rachel became one of my favorite characters. Her anxiety made her feel so real. As someone who suffers from panic disorder I know what it’s like to feel lost and scared and to just want to almost give up. 

Isaiah was amazing in this book. To finally be able to get inside his head felt like a reward. There were reveals in CIY about Isaiah that just made me pause for a second. I remember sitting in my car and looking up amazed. We also saw a soft side to him. Isaiah is willing to do anything for the people he loves, which can be seen at the beginning of the book and throughout most of the books.

What I love about companion novels is the fact that we still see past characters. In Dare You To we had Noah and Isaiah. In Crash Into You there was Noah and Echo and Beth that I was just bouncing with joy. My favorite scene was when Noah. Beth, and Isaiah were all together. It was like a messed version of a family reunion.

I also loved the new characters that were introduced. Rachel’s brothers wee hilarious. Especially West. I love West. Which brings me to the fourth book: TAKE ME ON. West’s story. That makes me so happy.

Katie McGarry knows how to capture the emotions of being a teenager. Crash Into You doesn’t disappoint. Just like Rachel, we all want to be something amazing for our parents and don’t want to disappoint them, even if it means hiding aspects of who we are. I know so many people who are just like Isaiah. Willing to do anything to keep the people we love safe. Everyone needs to read this book… ALL of Katie McGarry’s books.

A million stars yes.

Read On!

~Lauren

Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson

Blackmoore: A Proper Romance

Kate Worthington knows her heart and she knows she will never marry. Her plan is to travel       to India instead—if only to find peace for her restless spirit and to escape the family she abhors. But Kate’s meddlesome mother has other plans. She makes a bargain with Kate: India, yes, but only after Kate has secured—and rejected—three marriage proposals.

Kate journeys to the stately manor of Blackmoore determined to fulfill her end of the bargain and enlists the help of her dearest childhood friend, Henry Delafield. But when it comes to matters of love, bargains are meaningless and plans are changeable. There on the wild lands of Blackmoore, Kate must face the truth that has kept her heart captive. Will the proposal she is determined to reject actually be the one thing that will set her heart free?

Set in Northern England in 1820, Blackmoore is a Regency romance that tells the story of a young woman struggling to learn how to follow her heart. It is Wuthering Heights meets Little Women with a delicious must-read twist. (Goodreads)

 

Rating: 5/5 Stars

My Thoughts:

I read Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson back in my sophomore year of high school. (I didn’t even realize Blackmoore took so long to come out.) Julianne Donaldson captured me with, not only her way of writing, but the fact that (as the cover states) the romance is proper. And the cutest thing you’ve ever read.

Blackmoore has to be one of the best Regency novels I’ve read in a long time. I feel that Julianne Donaldson capture Kate in such an amazing way. Numerous of times I was able to feel her emotions. If Kate felt heartbroken or ashamed I swear my chest got tight. I may have cried at some point. I know I never really did that during Edenbrooke. I feel that Blackmoore had a much more emotional plot. Kate, Henry, any character really felt so real. I loved the chapters that went back in time. Each one gave even more insight into the relationship of Henry and Kate and I feel aided in making the story feel so real. I loved the fact that Kate is such a strong character. She knows what she wants and refuses to give up, even if at points she’s about to.

Henry… I don’t even know what to say about him. If I could pick any fictional character to be my Dream Guy (and believe me when I say there are many) I would choose Henry. Even over Jace, Four, Will, and basically a million others. He is willing to do anything for Kate, he understands her more than she understands herself, and by god does he know his way to your heart. There isn’t any intense eye gazing but just simple looks. I don’t even know how to describe the amazingness of Henry. He’s basically what anyone would want in a friend, boyfriend, even girlfriend. Henry does everything in his power to give Kate what she wants. I feel that if the chance, even as cliché as this sounds, Henry would give Kate the world.

I also kept thinking of Kate Chopin when reading Blackmoore. I feel that Blackmoore sort of has the same emotions to it that the Awakening (of course not completely but more 50%). From the caged bird to Kate’s name, I feel that Blackmoore was almost like it. But happy ending involved in Blackmoore.

I loved Blackmoore so much. This review sucked and I apologize for that but I really can’t form my words into a sentence. People need to read this book, to go out and spread the awesomeness that is Julianne Donaldson. Go forth my viewers and READ. THIS. BOOK… and Edenbrooke.

 

~ Lauren