July 9, 2020

Reviews: More Than Maybe + 10 Things I Hate About Pinky + Ever Cursed

pub 7/21/20 by Wednesday Books
Young Adult - Contemporary
Received ARC from pub for review
⭐⭐⭐ 3 stars | More Than Maybe is my second Erin Hahn book and my favorite thing about her writing is how much her love of music shines through (well that and her super cute romances). Luke Greenly and Vada Carsewell both love music and have secretly been crushing on each other for years. For Luke, he's an extremely talented songwriter and musician who wants nothing to do with performing thanks to growing up with a famous punk rocker dad. Instead he co-hosts a podcast with his twin brother and writes songs in secret. On the other hand, Vada is all about pursuing a career in music journalism, which is why she runs a music blog and works at her mom's boyfriend's bar to get a better understanding of bands and booking acts. When the two pair up for a senior class assignment, they finally get a chance to get to know one another instead of just admiring from afar. Their interactions and how they communicated via sharing songs over text was really fun. But I have to admit, I didn't really connect to either of them even though I certainly rooted for them to get together. There were just certain familial issues that the author touched on and gave importance to (for good reason) that I thought needed more development or backstory on. 

Do I recommend? I do! Even though I prefer her debut novel, You'd Be Mine, this was a cute and sweet novel that I'd recommend borrowing from the library. 


pub 7/21/20 by Simon Pulse
Young Adult - Contemporary
Received e-ARC from pub for review
⭐⭐⭐💫 3.5 stars |  We all know how fake dating ends (in fiction, at least) but it never fails to entertain me! Pinky Kumar is all about the activist life and finding new causes to champion, much to chagrin of conservative lawyer parents. Samir Jha is about as straight-laced as they come, an uber-planner, and just the quintessential nice guy (can you tell I liked him?). These two sound like a recipe for disaster but of course that's not the case. When Pinky is away with her family at their Cape Cod lake house, she gets fed up with her parents' criticisms and convinces Samir to come and pose as her boyfriend for the summer. Even though they run in the same circle of friends, they've never really been friends themselves. Until now. They bicker constantly and clearly push each other's buttons but at the same time, they get to know one another and before you know it, sparks fly. (I also love hate-to-love romances.) But it was yet another one of those situations where the relationship was sweet and I was rooting for their happily-ever-after but I didn't connect to the protagonists on an individual level. It also felt like they started falling for each other really fast. Like one day it was all "ugh this person drives me crazy" to "omg I feel attracted" overnight. 

Do I recommend? Yes! I would've expected Sandhya Menon to expand the world beyond Dimple and Rishi but I'm so glad she did. Each couple has been a lot of fun to get to know. 


pub 7/28/20 by Simon Pulse
Young Adult - Fantasy
Received e-ARC from pub for review
⭐⭐⭐ 3 stars |  I've read all of Corey Ann Haydu's contemporary YA fiction so this was my first look into what she could do with fantasy. And it doesn't surprise me at all that this tale is filled with feminist themes, vivid imagery, and a very unique take on what it means to be a princess. The story alternates between Jane and Reagan's points-of-view. Jane is one of the six cursed Princesses of Ever and she, along with her sisters, are cursed to be Without one essential thing. It could sleep, love, hope, or in Jane's case, the ability to eat. Their mother, the Queen, is frozen in time in an unbreakable glass box while their father, the King, roams free. And Reagan? She's the witch who cursed them, for reasons the princess don't know or understand. But when their youngest sister's cursed sets in, they now have the chance to break the curse as long as they work with Reagan. It turns into an adventure of self-discovery, uncovering long hidden secrets, sisterhood, and learning more than they ever realized about the kingdom they're meant to rule. I thought Haydu's subversive take on fairytales was very timely; my only wish was that more time had been spent on each of the girls and the backstory.

Do I recommend? I would recommend borrowing this from the library but if you're in the mood for a unique, feminist take on fairy tales then this one is for you. 

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