Amanda's Adventures · Everything & Anything · The Readers Favorites

Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman

Summary:
Caden Bosch is on a ship that’s headed for the deepest point on Earth: Challenger Deep, the southern part of the Mariana’s Trench.
Caden Bosch is a brilliant high school student whose friends are starting to notice his odd behavior.
Caden Bosch is designated the ship’s artist in residence, to document the journey with images.
Caden Bosch pretends to join the school track team but spends his days walking for miles, absorbed by thee thoughts in his head.
Caden Bosch is split between his allegiance to the captain and the allure of mutiny.
Caden Bosch is torn.
A captivating and powerful novel that lingers long beyond the last page, Challenger Deepis a heartfelt tour de force by one of today’s most admired writers for teens.
Review:
I was unsure about this book at first. Honestly, it took me about a week before actually getting further than ten pages into it and that was mostly thanks to the audiobook. I ended up listening to the audio from my library because I really wanted to get into the story. Also because I was doing my Christmas baking and I needed an audiobook to listen to. The audiobook sucked me in so quickly. The narrator did everything right in this story.

“The things I feel cannot be put into words, or if they can bem the words are in no language anyone can understand. My emotions are talking in tongues. Joy spins into anger spins into fear them into amused irony, like leaping from a plane, arms wide, knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that you can fly, then discovering you can’t, and not only don’t you have a parachute, but you don’t have any clothes on, and the people below all have binoculars and are laughing as you plummet to a highly embarassing doom.”

I had a hard time with this book in the beginning because I couldn’t tell what was actually going on. I didn’t know if Caden was actually on a ship or if that was a metaphor for something or what the hell was going on. After a while, I figured out what was going on and I think this confusion was likely intentional.

“We always look for the signs we missed when something does wrong. We become like detectives trying to solve a murder, because maybe if we uncover the clues, it gives us some control. Sure, we can’t change what happened, but if we can string together enough clues, we can prove that whtever nightmare has befallen us, we could have stopped it, if only we had been smart enough. I suppose it is better to believe that all the clues in the world wouldn’t have changes a thing.” 

Challenger Deep was honestly such an incredible story once I figured out what was going on. Once I realized what the story was actually about. It was really hard hitting. The things Caden feels and experiences and thinks were just so powerful. I’m definitely still reeling from the last hour or so of the audiobook. I went back and forth between the audio and the book.

“We are, however, creatures of containment. We want all things in life packed into boxes that we can label. But just because we have the ability to label is, doesn’t mean we really know what’s in the box.”

I really am not even sure how to form my thoughts about this book into real sentences. I think this was such an important story that everyone should read. This talks about mental illness in such a raw and interesting way. This was made even more powerful when I learned that this story was widely based on Neal’s experience with his son. To the point where his son’s artwork is inserted into the pages periodically.

“Dead kids are put on pedestals, but mentally ill kids get hidden under the rug.”

I just think everyone should read this book and that is all, goodbye.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

*Want to buy this book? Just click the image of the book cover! As Amazon Affiliates we will get a percentage of any purchase, feel free to support us.

Advertisements
Amanda's Adventures · Blogmas · Everything & Anything · The Readers Favorites

Blogmas Book Review – Dry by Neal Shusterman & Jarrod Shusterman

Summary:
Everyone’s going to remember where they were when the taps went dry.
The drought-or the Tap-Out, as everyone calls it-has been going on for a while now. Everyone’s life has become an endless list of don’ts: don’t water the lawn, don’t fill up your pool, don’t take long showers.
Until the taps run dry.
Suddenly Alyssa’s quiet suburban street spirals into a war zone of desperation; neighbors and families turning against one another in the hunt for water. When her parents don’t return, and she and her brother are threatened, Alyssa has to make impossible choices if she’s going to survive.
Critically acclaimed author Neal Shusterman teams up with Jarrod Shusterman in this story of survival, when the California drought escalates to catastrophic proportions.
Review:
Dry was one of my most anticipated released of this year. I’m a sucker for any sort of dystopian. I’m also a sucker for books that take place in settings I’m familiar with. I lived in San Diego for a few years where the reality of the drought is slowly creeping up on people and its all too real. I also was so easily able to picture this story happening because I was familiar with the area the story happens in. I love stories like this, or ones with vague-ish settings so I can fill in the blanks with places I know.

“People can be monsters. Whether it’s just their actions, or whether it’s who they really are, it doesn’t matter. The result is the same.”

This story is told through a few different perspectives. I really enjoyed this because we got to see into the minds of all the players in our story. So we got to see what was going through their heads before/during/after some of the seriously crazy things that happened. We also occasionally had some updates from around the city from helicopter pilots, power plant employees, other minor characters we meet in the story, truck drivers transporting water, and various news outlets. All of these various snippets ended up being tied into other important parts of the story and I liked how creatively this was done.

“But there’s that moment when you realize they’re not superheroes, or villains. They’re painfully, unforgivably human. The question is, can you forgive them for being human anyway?

I liked Alyssa, the first character we meet. She’s just trying to protect her little brother. Even though she mostly has no idea what’s going on, she quickly realizes that things are just going to get worse and worse. She tries to stay positive for Garrett (her brother) even when things were pretty much consistently falling apart and I liked that about her. Being able to put on a brave face for her brother though she knew nothing good was coming is admirable. Her little brother Garrett was a little trouble maker. He kept disappearing which sometimes complicated things and sometimes ended up helping things. I liked him because he made me relate to Alyssa more. (I have two little brothers and a little sister. They’re all older than Garrett, though I’d want to protect them no matter their age.)

“Why don’t they do something about it instead if spending time blaming people?”

Kelton, the neighbor, was a character that grew on me. I feel like he had the most development. He went from putting up a front, acting like he was a big bad tough guy that knew everything to a kid that has seen some real bad shit and might actually be that tough guy. I felt really bad for Kelton. He got the shittiest end of the stick in this story. Though his family was the most prepared for the Tap-Out, the worst befalls them.

“Tomorrow is going to have to take care of itself for a while,” Alyssa says. Then she adds, “Yesterday, too.”

Jaqui was our designated bad girl. Independent, sassy, reckless, and a little wild. I think I wanted to like her more than I did, until the end. She didn’t want to get attached to anyone at any point. But in the end, UGH. I can’t even talk about it. She redeemed herself and that’s all I’m going to say.

“Wasn’t it Jacqui who told us the human body is sixty percent water? Well, now I know what the rest is. The rest is dust, the rest is ash, it’s sorrow and it’s grief…But above all that, in spite of all that, binding us together…is hope. And joy. And a wellspring of all the things that still might be.”

Henry is trash. 100% nothing but trash. Every time I started to like him, he would screw things up again. He was self serving and screwed up a really good thing. He could have been part of the squad, but instead messed shit up over and over again.

“The worst part of doing something inexcusable is that you can never take it back. It’s like breaking a glass. It can’t unbreak. The best you can do is sweep it up, and hope you don’t step on the slivers you left behind.”

Overall, Dry was one of my most anticipated released of the year and it absolutely did not disappoint me. I love a good dystopian and this was exactly that. Set in the distant-ish future, but realistic to really bring some fears to the surface. It’s a story about how quickly people can and will shed their humanity in the face of disaster. A story that touches on fears that are all too real. This is an incredible story that is so much more than it seems. Written by a father/son duo, the Shusterman’s have outdone themselves with this, one of my new favorites without a doubt.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

*Want to buy this book? Just click the image of the book cover! As Amazon Affiliates we will get a percentage of any purchase, feel free to support us.

ABC book challenge · Everything & Anything

ABC Book Challenge |C|

It’s that day of the week again bookworms. This week our letter is C. For those of you that are new here, we’re going to talk about our most memorable books with the letter C and books with this letter that are sadly still living on our TBR lists.

Read last week’s post here.

This weeks letter – C.

Most Memorable Books

Amanda-

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare – This whole series is super memorable to me. I’ve recently purchased all of the books again and plan to start rereading them to get excited for the final book to be released this fall.

Cross Roads by William Paul Young – I’m not a religious person, but this book (and the others by this same author) are such powerful stories.

Antonia-

Cinder by Marissa Meyer – It’s such a unique and wonderful story. I adored the characters especially and this series has become one of my absolute favorites.

Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor – This was such a cute little love story which isn’t necessarily special except that it’s one of the only books where I really paid attention to the setting. Friday Harbor was instantly somewhere I wanted to go and now that I live close to the real Friday Harbor I plan to visit soon.

 

 

Books Still on my TBR List

Amanda-

Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman – I’m planning on reading this at some point this month (hopefully). I’ve heard really good things about it.

Collateral by Ellen Hopkins – I read another of her adult novels and really enjoyed it. So I’m hoping this one is good too.

Antonia-

Celtic Magic by Linsey Hall – This is the next book in the Dragon’s Gift: The Druid series and I’m so excited to see where the story takes me next. I’ve loved all her books that I’ve read so far so I have high hopes for this one.

Chasing Fire by Nora Roberts – I surprisingly enough don’t have much on my TBR that start with C so this one’s actually a reread. It’s one of her books that I read years ago and have been thinking of picking up again recently.

 

 

 

 

These are our picks for this weeks letter. What books are memorable to you that start with C? Any that are still waiting to be picked next from your TBR list?

Amanda's Adventures · Everything & Anything · Top Ten Tuesday

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Best of 2018

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week we’re given a new prompt for a top ten list of all things bookish. This week is top ten best books I’ve read in 2018 (so far). I’m excited about this one because I have a post on other social media where I post the best book I read each month. I’m obviously only through June so here I can add a few more! Here’s my list of the ten best books I’ve read so far this year.

top t t

1. Air Awakens by Elise Kova – I found this as a boxed set on my Kindle so it was like reading one giant book even though it was five books. This series made me laugh and cry and It’s only been a few months since I read it and I already want to read it again.
2. Moon Chosen & Sun Warrior by P.C. Cast – It honestly took me forever to actually read these but they were AMAZING and I can’t wait until Windrider comes out in October.
3. Scythe & Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman – This was an incredibly creative story. I’m excited to see where the third book takes these characters.
4. Renegades by Marissa Meyer – Superheros, duh!
5. The Paper Magician series by Charlie N. Holmberg – I loved all of these books, even the fourth that has different characters in the same word. The world is so interesting and well thought out and just incredible.
6. The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson – I found this book in the ‘popular books’ section of my Kindle Unlimited subscription and thought it sounded interesting. Boy was it. The plot in this story was so confusing and funny and heart wrenching all at the same time somehow.
7. A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas – The newest book (novella) in my favorite series, so yeah, it obviously makes this list.
8. The Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline – It was such an emotional and just all around powerful story. I didn’t think I was going to like this book nearly as much as I did.
9. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – I was so surprised by this book. I thought this was one that was overly hyped and it wasn’t really ever on my TBR list. But I found it at the library and said why not. I’m glad I gave it a chance because this story blew me away.
10. Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts – My first audiobook ever. I’ve been super excited for this book to be released because Nora is an auto-buy author for me. I honestly hadn’t even read the synopsis. So when I started listening and the mall shooting happened, I balled my eyes out for the first like half an hour that I was listening.

These are the top ten books that are my favorites for the year so far. I chose to only list books that I read for the first time this year, otherwise, my favorite series would overtake this list. What books are your favorites for 2018 so far?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda's Adventures · Book Hauls · Everything & Anything

Amanda’s June Book Haul

Hi, lovelies!

So this month I went a liiiittle crazy buying books. Between Book Outlet’s fabulous sale where I bought 20+ new books and the discovery of the magic that is a local used bookstore (there’s three within fifteen minutes of my house!), I ended up with quite the book haul for this month.

I’ve never done a book haul post before so this is what we’re going to do. I’m going to put some pictures below of all of my new pretty books. I’m not going to talk about every single book because that would make this post entirely too long, but I am going to mention a few that I’m most excited to read in the upcoming month.

Let’s get down to it, here are all my new shiny pretty babies.

 

The Book Jumper by Mechthild Glaser – The summary of this book sounds so interesting I couldn’t help but buy it. It’s high on my TBR list for July. I’m excited to get into the story. It’s a book that’s been translated from German which I think is super interesting.

Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow – This was a Target find for me. I’ve seen several bookish friends read this and give it rave reviews. I’m excited to sink my teeth into it. I haven’t read enough realistic books lately.

Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman – Shusterman is an author that I love more and more everytime I read another one of his books. I managed to pick up this book with the Book Outlet sale. It’s won a few awards and sounds like a really powerful story.

 

Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling – I found the whole series (except for book seven) at one of the local bookstores I found around my town recently. I stupidly sold my full series set before I moved a few years ago and have regretted it since. So when I found the (almost) full set all matching and hardcover I just couldn’t resist.

The Mara Dyer series by Michelle Hodkin – I have heard so many good things about this trilogy. I’m super duper excited to read these books and will for sure be getting to them in July. When I found the boxed set on sale at Book Outlet I knew I had to have them.

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer – This series is one that a few bookish friends I know have started to read for the first time (Yes I’m talking about you Ebru @ EBS and Her Reads) so again, when I saw the boxed set on Book Outlet I knew I had to buy it and add it to my TBR for a reread soon.

This is my haul for the month of June! What did you haul this month? Did we buy any of the same books? What books don’t you see that I definitely should have bought?

Feel free to leave your thoughts and comments and as always,

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda's Adventures · Top Ten Tuesday

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Winter TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we have a different topic that we write our top ten about. This weeks topic is top ten books on my winter to be read list. I haven’t quite thought about what I need to read that I haven’t yet. So, this list might be all over the place. Here’s what I came up with.

1)Takedown Twenty by Janet Evanovich– I’m totally obsessed with this series. They don’t have to be read in any specific order, and they’re all freaking hilarious.

2)Delirium by Lauren Oliver– I’ve heard a lot of really good things about this series. Its been on my TBR list for a while, but I’ve been slacking on my library visits.

3)The Book Thief by Markus Zusak– This is another that’s been on my list for a while because there’s a movie of it coming out. Every time I go to the book store I always pick it up, read the back, then put it back down. So I’m thinking it’ll be another I get from the library.

4)The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins– I haven’t read this trilogy in too long. I’d really enjoy reading them again. So, maybe if I actually put it on a list I’ll get to it eventually.

5)The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey– This book looks really interesting. I read another by Rick Yancey and loved it. So I figure this could also be a great book.

6)Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley– I found this book while looking through the list of Printz awards. It sounds like it has potential to be seriously good. Along with the fact that it won two awards, so there’s probably a reason for that.

7)Unstrung by Neal Shusterman– I need to have this. The first three were amazing. I know the fourth will be just as wonderful.

8)The Sum of All Kisses by Julia Quinn– This just came out, and I adore Julia Quinn’s books. So it’s a must.

9)The Infinite Moment of Us by Lauren Myracle– I just adore Lauren Myracle. This also sounds really cute.

10)Let it Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, &Lauren Myracle– I’ve heard nothing but good things about this book. Also, John Green.

These are the books that I’ll hopefully get to spend my winter reading. What’s on your list for this winter?