July 21, 2017

Stacking the Shelves (48)

Weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews 

I bought a few more books than I expected to but it's not my fault that I enjoyed the books I borrowed from the library so much that I needed a copy of my own! (It's true.) Otherwise, I only bought two books I'd never read before and I got a bunch of exciting book mail that I'm excited to share.

So, onto the books!


What new books have you guys gotten lately?

July 19, 2017

Review: Changes in Latitude by Jen Malone

Collaborative feature with Alexa since Nov 2013. We read ARCs together and post our reviews on the same date.

Changes in Latitude by Jen Malone
pub 7/25/17 by HarperTeen
Young Adult - Contemporary
Received from pub via Edelweiss
Plot • Since Cassie's parents have gotten divorced, all she wants to do is make summer plans with her friends and some have sense of normalcy. This notion is thrown out the window when her mother decides to take her and her younger brother Drew on a four-month sailing trip from Oregon to Mexico. Not only is her summer shot but she'll also miss the start of senior year. Basically this is the opposite of normal and her fury is exactly everything you'd expect from a teenager, especially when said teen blames her mom for ripping their family apart. Cassie misses her dad, "hates" her mom, wants to have fun with her best friends and the last thing she wants is to be stuck on a boat for months a time. Naturally, this is when a guy shows up and a very cute, flirtatious one at that. But Cassie is still torn between holding onto the past and opening up to the new possibilities in front of her like adventure, love and maybe even a little forgiveness.

Characters • I haven't been in Cassie's exact shoes but I remember fights with my mom in high school quite vividly and I certainly had my moments of digging my heels in just like she did. So I understood why she fought the trip and her mom as long as she did, despite how frustrating it was to read at times. But her life has been turned upside down and normal is an obvious thing to want. I do wish we had seen more progress between her and her mom throughout the book though. However, I was a huge fan of Jonah, the deckhand who joins their sailing crew. If I were going to be a stuck on a boat for that long, I'd want someone like him around. Their relationship, from how they met to how they get to know each other, was really cute and I wouldn't have minded a few more pages spent with them either.

Writing • It's weird because I felt like a lot didn't happen, although as I write this review it's clear a lot did. If I had to pinpoint it, I'd say that while the romance happened quickly, everything else in the background did not until the very end, which was a bit rushed.

Overall feelings • It's a fun book! When I think of travel books, I picture getting on a plane, taking the train or a road trip with friends. So I enjoyed reading about sailing instead and picturing myself on a boat!

What's an experience that derailed your plans but turned out to be worth it in the end? • I immediately knew my answer would be Barcelona. My plan this year was to go to Iceland with my travel buddy and we had been talking about it since early 2016. When that fell through, I knew I had to travel somewhere this year and I landed on Barcelona. It all worked out in the end!

July 17, 2017

Table for Two #6

Alexa of Alexa Loves Books and I have teamed up to bring you a collaboration that involves two of our favorite things - New York City and food. We're proud to introduce Table for Two, where the two of us will be highlighting restaurants and dessert spots in New York City. You'll be hearing our personal opinions on the place and the food, as well as where you can go to try it out for yourself.

For this month's Table for Two, I'll be chatting about Taiyaki NYC and Alexa is featuring The Wren.

I'm somewhat off to late start this summer but don't you worry, Project Ice Cream is still going strong and Taikayi was one of the many places on my list. I've realized the best way for me to discover new spots is through Instagram and these fish-shaped waffles filled with ice cream kept popping up on my feed and for good reason. First of all, the presentation is so fun. You can make your own or choose one of their specials and I decided to go with the latter. I got the Unicorn and Alexa got the berry one (I can't remember the name). Mine was a mix of vanilla and berry ice cream, rainbow sprinkles and marshmallows for the ears and horn. I'll admit, even though we ate indoors (we went on a very hot day so A/C was necessary), it was still pretty messy to eat. It melted fast and at one point, I was dripping ice cream everywhere. Totally worth it though and I'd love to go back to try their other flavors (I'm eyeing the match and black sesame one next!). 

You can find Taiyaki NYC at 119 Baxter Street. Let us know if you check it out!