*Arc Review* Cinderella is Dead- Kalynn Bayron

51079282. sx318 sy475 “Wholly original and captivating.” – Brigid Kemmerer, New York Times bestselling author of A Curse So Dark and Lonely

Girls team up to overthrow the kingdom in this unique and powerful retelling of Cinderella from a stunning new voice that’s perfect for fans of A Curse So Dark and Lonely.

It’s 200 years after Cinderella found her prince, but the fairy tale is over. Teen girls are now required to appear at the Annual Ball, where the men of the kingdom select wives based on a girl’s display of finery. If a suitable match is not found, the girls not chosen are never heard from again.

Sixteen-year-old Sophia would much rather marry Erin, her childhood best friend, than parade in front of suitors. At the ball, Sophia makes the desperate decision to flee, and finds herself hiding in Cinderella’s mausoleum. There, she meets Constance, the last known descendant of Cinderella and her step sisters. Together they vow to bring down the king once and for all–and in the process, they learn that there’s more to Cinderella’s story than they ever knew . . .

This fresh take on a classic story will make readers question the tales they’ve been told, and root for girls to break down the constructs of the world around them.

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My Review:

“I think we sometimes make the mistake of thinking monsters are abhorrent aberrations, lurking in the darkest recesses, when the truth is far more disturbing. The most monstrous of men are those who sit in plain sight, daring you to challenge them.”

Cinderella is a tale that we’ve all heard of before. Most kids want that fairy tale ending in life where we find that one person who sweeps us off of our feet and you get to live in a castle. But what happens when it was all a lie?

Holy hell! This book was outstanding. I could honestly not put this down. Every time I did, I kept thinking about what was going to happen next and then I’d have to pick it back up again. I don’t regret finishing this book so quickly.

This enchanting book takes on a fairytale with a wholesome ending and turns it into a fire breathing dragon looking for blood. This unique story will captivate you and crush everything you thought you knew.

Cinderella is Dead was one hell of a thrill-ride that will blow your mind. This would make Disney spin in his grave and I love it. It’s time for girls to stand up and decide their fates. Don’t ever underestimate the power of a female fighting for what she believes in!!

stacy

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? 5/11/20

Hello and happy Monday.

These days seem to be zooming past so quickly.

This week I’m going to read a book that I’ve won on Twitter, an arc that I’ve picked up at ALA Midwinter, and a book that I’ve owned for quite some time.

What are you reading?

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The Life and (Medieval) Times of Kit Sweetly- Jamie Pacton

49952514. sx318 sy475 Working as a wench ― i.e. waitress ― at a cheesy medieval-themed restaurant in the Chicago suburbs, Kit Sweetly dreams of being a knight like her brother. She has the moves, is capable on a horse, and desperately needs the raise that comes with knighthood, so she can help her mom pay the mortgage and hold a spot at her dream college.

Company policy allows only guys to be knights. So when Kit takes her brother’s place and reveals her identity at the end of the show, she rockets into internet fame and a whole lot of trouble with the management. But the Girl Knight won’t go down without a fight. As other wenches join her quest, a protest forms. In a joust before Castle executives, they’ll prove that gender restrictions should stay medieval―if they don’t get fired first.

Moxie meets A Knight’s Tale as Kit Sweetly slays sexism, bad bosses, and bad luck to become a knight at a medieval-themed restaurant.

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Cinderella is Dead- Kalynn Bayron

51079282. sx318 sy475 “Wholly original and captivating.” – Brigid Kemmerer, New York Times bestselling author of A Curse So Dark and Lonely

Girls team up to overthrow the kingdom in this unique and powerful retelling of Cinderella from a stunning new voice that’s perfect for fans of A Curse So Dark and Lonely.

It’s 200 years after Cinderella found her prince, but the fairy tale is over. Teen girls are now required to appear at the Annual Ball, where the men of the kingdom select wives based on a girl’s display of finery. If a suitable match is not found, the girls not chosen are never heard from again.

Sixteen-year-old Sophia would much rather marry Erin, her childhood best friend, than parade in front of suitors. At the ball, Sophia makes the desperate decision to flee, and finds herself hiding in Cinderella’s mausoleum. There, she meets Constance, the last known descendant of Cinderella and her step sisters. Together they vow to bring down the king once and for all–and in the process, they learn that there’s more to Cinderella’s story than they ever knew . . .

This fresh take on a classic story will make readers question the tales they’ve been told, and root for girls to break down the constructs of the world around them.

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Sorority- Genevieve Sly Crane

36374015. sy475 Sisterhood is forever…whether you like it or not.

Prep meets Girls in White Dresses in Genevieve Sly Crane’s deliciously addictive, voyeuristic exploration of female friendship and coming of age that will appeal to anyone who has ever been curious about what happens in a sorority house.

Twinsets and pearls, secrets and kinship, rituals that hold sisters together in a sacred bond of everlasting trust. Certain chaste images spring to mind when one thinks of sororities. But make no mistake: these women are not braiding each other’s hair and having pillow fights—not by a long shot.

What Genevieve Sly Crane has conjured in these pages is a blunt, in your face look behind the closed doors of a house full of contemporary women—and there are no holds barred. These women have issues: self-inflicted, family inflicted, sister-to-sister inflicted—and it is all on the page. At the center of this swirl is Margot: the sister who died in the house, and each chapter is told from the points of view of the women who orbit her death and have their own reactions to it.

With a keen sense of character and elegant, observant prose, Crane details the undercurrents of tension in a world where perfection comes at a cost and the best things in life are painful—if not impossible—to acquire: Beauty. A mother’s love. And friendship… or at least the appearance of it. Woven throughout are glimmers of the classical myths that undercut the lives of women in Greek life. After all, the Greek goddesses did cause their fair share of destruction.

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stacy

*First Line Friday 4/17/20* Girls Save the World in This One- Ash Parsons

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June’s whole life has been leading up to this: ZombieCon, the fan convention celebrating all things zombies. She and her two best friends plan on hitting all the panels, photo ops, and meeting the heartthrob lead of their favorite zombie apocalypse show Human Wasteland.

And when they arrive everything seems perfect, though June has to shrug off some weirdness from other fans—people shambling a little too much, and someone actually biting a cast member. Then all hell breaks loose and June and her friends discover the truth: real zombies are taking over the con. Now June must do whatever it takes to survive a horde of actual brain-eating zombies—and save the world.

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“We’re never going to make it. This is it. My life is over. In the days and months that follow this tragedy, when they speak my name, they’ll say in hushed tones, she lived as she died: full of complaint and bile, mere inches from her goal.”

 

*Review* Pet Sematary- Stephen King

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Sometimes dead is better….

When the Creeds move into a beautiful old house in rural Maine, it all seems too good to be true: physician father, beautiful wife, charming little daughter, adorable infant son – and now an idyllic home. As a family, they’ve got it all… right down to the friendly cat. But the nearby woods hide a blood-chilling truth – more terrifying than death itself… and hideously more powerful.

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My Review:

“And the most terrifying question of all may be just how much horror the human mind can stand and still maintain a wakeful, staring, unrelenting sanity.”

I remember reading this when I was a lot younger and being scared out of my wits. To where I had to sleep with the lights on and not make eye contact as we drove by any Cemetery. As an adult, I didn’t think that this was that scary until the last thirty pages or so.

With a book like this, I’m more of a visual person. There are so many spooky elements that just need to be witnessed with actors and not words.

And I never realized that he referenced so many of his other works in this book. And let’s not forget his fond love of The Ramones!

Stephen King is the master of scaring the pants off of anyone and this one definitely delivers. There is something about the way he writes that would even bring fear to Poe himself.

Just a quick reminder, listen to your intuition, it will save your life one day!

stacy

*Arc Review* Fame, Fate, and the First Kiss- Kasie West

38251237 Lacey Barnes has dreamt of being in a movie for as long as she can remember. However, while her dream did include working alongside the hottest actor in Hollywood, it didn’t involve having to finish up her senior year of high school at the same time she was getting her big break. Although that is nothing compared to Donavan, the straight-laced student her father hires to tutor her, who is a full-on nightmare.

As Lacey struggles to juggle her burgeoning career, some on-set sabotage, and an off-screen romance with the unlikeliest of leading men, she quickly learns that sometimes the best stories happen when you go off script.

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My Review:

“You have no idea how much different it is off script. You need a real kiss. Your first real kiss. Seriously, it’s so much better. You will never want to stop.”

I’ve never started a book and finished it in under a day. We can all agree that this might be one of my top three Kasie West books. This was an all-around fantastic read. I can’t wait for everyone to fall in love with Lacey and Donovan.

Being an actress is hard. You have to be the role you have and not let anything stop you from living that moment. Lacey is the girl with that star-studded dream. She lands a dream role and co-stars beside one of the biggest names in Hollywood at the moment, Grant James.

Lacey lives offset with her helicopter dad who is all about her completing her school work and living the normal teen life with a curfew. But being a teen means throwing a couple of curveballs his way. Her dad hires her a tutor and that makes things more complicated.

The set life isn’t what Lacey expected. She’s having some trouble and now someone is trying to sabotage her screen time. Can those troubles and a new crush get in her way of stardom?

This book was amazing. You get an in-depth look at movie making, the trials they go through to get everything perfect. The characters were very lovable and you create this instant bond with them, especially with Lacey and Donovan. What stopped this from being a five-star book was the outcome of the saboteur. The reasoning was kind of boring and I was hoping for more drama.

Zombies, a cute tutor, and on-set drama make this one of my favorite contemporaries of the year. It was that instant connection we all know and crave. Kasie is the best in her genre and she doesn’t disappoint.

stacy

*Review* Anna and the Apocalypse- Katharine Turner & Barry Waldo

40653285   School’s out for the end of the world.

Anna and the Apocalypse is a horror comedy about a teenager who faces down a zombie apocalypse with a little help from her friends.

Anna Shepherd is a straight-A student with a lot going on under the surface: she’s struggling with her mom’s death, total friend drama, and the fallout from wasting her time on a very attractive boy. She’s looking forward to skipping town after graduation–but then a zombie apocalypse majorly disrupts the holidays season. It’s going to be very hard to graduate high school without a brain.

To save the day, Anna, her friends, and her frenemies will have to journey straight to the heart of one of the most dangerous places ever known, a place famous for its horror, terror, and pain…high school.

This novel is inspired by the musical feature film, Anna and the Apocalypse.

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My Review:

“Uh, sorry, St. Peter, she whispered, fighting with the on/off button. But I was trying to save my friends’ lives and instead I accidentally switched on a huge vibrating dildo and dropped it on the floor and then I got eaten by zombies. May I come in?”

I love zombies. Always have and always will. When I get something in my hand that promises laughs and zombie slayings like Shaun of the Dead, I drop everything to start reading it. I should have known better about letting a fantastic cover talk me into something. Anna and the Apocalypse was a very sad take on the zombie takeover. It’s also a few years too late.

We all saw the preview for this movie and it looks something dreadful. But I thought that the book would be better because that’s how it always turns out. Nope, I was wrong. Soooo wrong.

Nothing is explained, kids kill zombies, people act like trash bags, and then it ends. It ends quickly and nothing happens. Some kids ride off into the sunset and others are dead. That sums up this entire book. Oh, oh! Let’s not forget the two times I awkwardly chuckled at some oddly placed jokes.

My rating was rounded up higher because of those two odd jokes and the amazing cover.

Who knew that zombies could be a disappointment? 🤷‍♀️

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stacy

The Zombie Apocalypse Book Tag

Happy October, everyone! Who is excited for Halloween tomorrow?! Halloween is my favorite time of the year, so I’m, of course, super excited to see everyone in their costumes tomorrow and to hand out some candy!

So, I thought in the spirit of Halloween, I would do another Halloween book tag! Now, I wasn’t tagged in this awesome book tag, but I stumbled across it and thought it was perfect for October (and, of course, Halloween!). Below are the instructions for the Zombie Apocalypse Book Tag:

Instructions:

1. Pick 5 books

2. Turn to a random page

3. The first name you see gets to be on your zombie survival team (yay?)

4. Apply the characters to the 10 situations and types of people in the order you got them

5. Fret over how doomed you are.

So each book gets two characters. For example, the characters I pick from City of Bones will get spots 1 and 2, Caraval will get spots 3 and 4, and so on.

Books I picked:

  • Caraval by Stephanie Garber
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
  • City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
  • Furyborn by Claire Legrand

The Zombie Apocalypse Book Tag:

1. The first person to die: Clary

I am surprisingly not surprised about this. As she’s pretty inexperienced in fighting in City of Bones, I can see why she would be the first to go. She’s a great character, but she gets overwhelmed pretty quickly. Bye-bye, Clary!

2. The person you trip to get away from the zombies: Dorothea

I’m that terrible person who loves the The Mortal Instruments series, but can’t remember Dorothea for the life of me. I hope she’s evil because then I did the right thing by tripping her. 🙂 If you know who she is, let me know in the comments!

3. The first person to turn into a zombie: Scarlett 😦

Noooo!! I love Scarlett from Caraval, so I am not happy about this! Tella will be destroyed when she finds out what happened to her sister.

4. The person that trips YOU to get away from the zombies: Tella

Okay, so not nice, Tella. She probably tripped me to get away from her zombie sister, not a zombie horde. Which means I could potentially be Scarlett’s first kill. Ugh, not what I had planned for the zombie apocalypse.

5. The idiot of the team: Tamlin

HA! THIS IS SO FREAKING FITTING! And I say it’s fitting because I am in no way a fan of Tamlin. I didn’t like him in the first book, so I for sure will not like him now. He may have a ton of experience in fighting and such, but he’s clueless when it comes to using his brain.

6. The “brains” of the team: Nesta (yeah, I can see this)

This is, by far, the most fitting of this whole zombie apocalypse team. Nesta is a smart individual. She may be slightly headstrong and stubborn, but that may come in handy when deciding the next move. She could very well be why most of the team will survive. Except for Scarlett. And hopefully Tamlin. 🙂

7. The team’s medic: Eliana

She could potentially be the medic, but she’d rather be out fighting the zombies. Eliana is a fighter and if you get injured, she’ll probably still be wondering why you are not fighting. So, she basically may not be the best choice, but she most likely knows first aid. I hope…

8. The weapons expert: Rielle

Actually, I feel like Rielle and Eliana should switch roles. Eliana loves her knives and fighting, so she would enjoy being the weapons expert. And Rielle so badly wants to use her powers for good, so why not be the team’s medic?

9. The brawler: Locke

Are you for real? Locke doesn’t fight; he starts the fights by opening his mouth and starting crap. So, I cannot see him as being the brawler. He’d probably hide behind someone else before stepping into a fight.

10. The Team Captain: Queen Orlagh

I see this as a bad choice, and the fellow readers that have read this book know why. So, if you are curious as to why this is a bad choice (or is it a good choice? Hmm…), check out The Cruel Prince! I don’t think we’d all live with her as the team captain, so knowing me and knowing Nesta, I’d be voting for Nesta as the team captain.


And that’s it! I loved this tag and the books I chose. If you are up for doing a book tag, try this one and tag me so I can see your results!

♥Nikole