Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Book Haul: I love Gift Cards

Hey guys!

I made an amazing find in my closet a couple of months ago - gift cards for my local bookstore worth 1400 kr, (140€) from my sixteenth birthday. I finally got a chance to use them, and this is what I've bought so far.

Legend by Marie Lu -- BookDepository || Goodreads
Prodigy by Marie Lu -- BookDepository || Goodreads
Champion by Marie Lu -- BookDepository || Goodreads
I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson -- BookDepository || Goodreads

I've already read both Legend and I'll Give You the Sun, and I loved them both - now I'm looking forward to continuing with the Legend series. I also have some money left on the gift cards so I'll see what more I get!

Have you read any of these books? What books have you gotten lately?

Friday, September 25, 2015

Book Review: Lethal by Sandra Brown

Title: Lethal
Author: Sandra Brown
Genre: Detective story, Romance
Pages: 472
Published: September 20th 2011

SummaryWhen her four year old daughter informs her a sick man is in their yard, Honor Gillette rushes out to help him. But that "sick" man turns out to be Lee Coburn, the man accused of murdering seven people the night before. Dangerous, desperate, and armed, he promises Honor that she and her daughter won't be hurt as long as she does everything he asks. She has no choice but to accept him at his word.

But Honor soon discovers that even those close to her can't be trusted. Coburn claims that her beloved late husband possessed something extremely valuable that places Honor and her daughter in grave danger. Coburn is there to retrieve it -- at any cost. From FBI offices in Washington, D.C., to a rundown shrimp boat in coastal Louisiana, Coburn and Honor run for their lives from the very people sworn to protect them, and unravel a web of corruption and depravity that threatens not only them, but the fabric of our society.


Review: (Spoiler-free)

This was the second book by Sandra Brown that I read, the first being Low Pressure, one of my favorite books. No, it is not YA fiction, but this author is definitely worth for you all to check out, because, well, she's brilliant. I'm not usually a fan of detective stories, but her books are the perfect mix of suspense and romance, and I think a lot of you would like them.

Lethal centers around Honor Gillette, a widowed mother of a four-year old child, but the story is told from multiple perspectives, around five or six different, I think. It works well, mixes things up a bit, but my favorite perspective was still Honor and I would have liked if the other perspectives, for example the perspective of Diego, would have interlaced even more in the main storyline.

“I don't panic unless I have to. Wastes energy.”

What I really liked was that every character really had their own life, their own problems and in the end, a great reason for their own motives. At times reading, I didn't understand why some things were included - some peoples' stories felt distanced from the main plot, but it all intertwined very well in the end. I think my favorite character was Emily, Honor's daughter, because she was so genuinely good and kind. I had moments during the read where I doubted almost every character and their true intentions, which was really exciting but also made me feel like I couldn't trust anyone. But I could always trust Emily.

The romance, too, felt real, the chemistry between Lee and Honor present from the start. I really liked how the third part in their relationship was Honor's dead husband - always in-between them. It felt like their personalities fitted so well with how they acted towards each other, and how they both handled their chemistry in this weird situation they were in.

Lethal was packed with plot-twists, lots of characters and a general feeling of 'What is really going on?' which kept me on my seat. Sandra Brown has a real talent for mixing romance with detective stories and keeping you wanting more. Still, I didn't love it quite as much as I did Low Pressure and I would recommend that book to you first. Though, if the summary intrigues you, definitely pick this up!

 (A 3.5, really!)

Have you read anything by Sandra Brown? Do you want to read this book?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Book Review: The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Title: The Evolution of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer #2)
Author: Michelle Hodkin
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Thriller
Pages: 528
Published: October 23rd 2012

SummaryMara Dyer once believed she could run from her past. She can't. 

She used to think her problems were all in her head. They aren't. 

She couldn't imagine that after everything she's been through, the boy she loves would still be keeping secrets. She's wrong. 

In this gripping sequel to The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, the truth evolves and choices prove deadly. What will become of Mara Dyer next? - Goodreads


Review: (Spoiler-free)

I first started reading this book back in October 2014, but I only finished it a couple of weeks ago, which makes this book one of those that are really hard to review. I can't exactly recall my feelings for the first part of the book, and I also have a hard time recalling all of the events. But I will try my best to remember. 

The reason why it has taken me so long to finish this book is not, as one might guess, because I didn't like it. I really did like it - the story is fast-paced and the mystery of what is happening to Mara and what is real and not makes it a real page-turner. You simply need to know. The reason why I did not finish this book in one sitting is because it is also very creepy, and I'm both paranoid and easily scared. Yup. 

For a while, I was scared of the mirror in my bathroom because I felt like Jude would be standing behind me in it, smiling creepily. I have a wild imagination and it haunts me when I try to sleep at night, especially when I read stuff like this. Creepy can be both good and bad. If you like creepy, you'll love Mara Dyer. If you don't like creepy, you might like Mara Dyer anyways, but you won't like sleeping alone anymore. 

“Everyone is a little crazy. The only difference between us and them is that they hide it better.” 

Aside from this, what makes this story so special is that when I read, I really have no idea if what I'm reading is real or not. This, to me, is fascinating, and very well done by Michelle Hodkin. It draws you in like a hurricane, and it goes faster and faster the farther in you get. It also has a love story worth swooning over, so it definitely deserves all the attention it has gotten. 

The only thing I can think of that isn't so good is that compared to the first book, I feel like this one was a bit drawn out. It could of course be a side-effect of the fact that it took me a total of ten months to read it, but I still get the feeling of "Oh, this is happening. But something similar has happened before, though, right?" and that it is a bit slower to get trough. Also, while I do not complain on the love that we are given in this book, I would want the love itself to take more space in the story. Love keeps me going. 

Over-all, this book is creepy but in a lot of ways brilliant. It has a quick pace and an easy-to-love love-interest, also an interesting story-line. If you haven't read this book, you should do it! Myself, I will buy the last book in the trilogy soon, because I need the rest of the story!

Other books in the series: (Links to Goodreads)
1. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer
2. The Evolution of Mara Dyer
3. The Retribution of Mara Dyer

Have your read this series? Did you like it?

Sunday, September 20, 2015

19/9-15: First draft of my manuscript printed

Today was a really big day for me. As in historical! The first draft of the story I've been working on for a few years now is now printed, and I hold it in my hand. Aaah!

I have never before printed something that I have written, and I have never before been this far along in the writing-process. It's so exciting and I feel so good and happy! All of today was spent marking in the script and making a new disposition for the story, since big parts of it are going and others are replacing them.

Currently, the manuscript is 220 A4 pages long, aka about 150 000 words. It is way to long so this is also going to be a challenge for me. But I feel like anything is possible right now and have high hopes for the future of this story!

Anyways, I just wanted to share this big moment in my life with you here on my blog. I'll probably be doing lots of work on this in the nearest future. Yay!

Are you writing anything right now? Do you prefer to read or write?

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Movie News: Before I Fall to the big screen

I am so excited about these Movie news. It was quite a while ago that I read Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, and I just found out it is actually going to become a movie!

It seems to me as if often the rights to great books are sold, but a movie rarely actually comes of it. Now, Zoey Deutch has been cast to star as Samantha Kingston in this production, so things seem to be moving. Nothing else has been announced yet but if I hear something more I will of course post it here!

Zoey Deutch is not what I imagined Sam to look like when I read, but I think (and hope) she can do a good job with the role all the same. Since so many people disliked the Vampire Academy movie-adaption, I never saw it, but Zoey played the role of Rose in it. Hopefully this will do the book more justice - we'll see, right?

What do you guys think about this? Have you read the book?

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Book Review: I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson

Title: I'll Give You the Sun
Author: Jandy Nelson
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 379
Published: September 16th, 2014

Summary: Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. 

But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. 

The early years are Noah's story to tell. The later years are Jude's. What the twins don't realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world. - Goodreads


Review: (Spoiler-free)

Oh my lord.

When I was twelve years old, I read Jandy Nelson's debute book, The Sky is Everywhere and I loved it so much. That was a long time ago now, and this book, I'll Give You the Sun, is the first book she has released since then, and ever since it came out I have wanted to read it. I heard great things about it, and though at first I thought the storyline sounded a bit vague, I still wanted to read it because I remembered how much I loved her first book.

I loved this one more. Nelson is such an incredibly talented writer. I don't know how she does it but she has a way with words that just makes me feel so much. It is beautiful and heartbreaking both at the same time, the entire book is so colorful and well-planned that it takes my breath away.

“Meeting your soul mate is like walking into a house you've been in before - you will recognize the furniture, the pictures on the wall, the books on the shelves, the contents of drawers: You could find your way around in the dark if you had to.” 

The characters are amazing - I love them. Not as part of a story, the way we love characters when we read. I love them as humans, I love the way their minds work and even their flaws. They feel so real and raw and so exposed on the paper that I could not stop reading about them and hope that things would work out. Often when a story switches between two different PoV's, I favor one of them, but this time I loved both just as much. When one PoV ended, I wanted to say "Stop, wait, not yet!" but the other story caught me right away and I soon forgot about the other one.

I think Nelson is a genius when it comes to giving that little extra to a story. Small details that make the characters and their lives special, excentric, different - I felt this with both of her books. The way Noah describes how he feels by painting in his mind, the way Jude hangs on to every word of their grandma's superstitious bible, it so well describes who they are without actually saying it out loud.

Also, it jumpes back and forth in time, since Jude tells the story when they're 16 and Noah when they're 13. You find out things in a jumpy manner, but not the messy kind but the one that leaves you hanging for more. In the end it's all tied together so well and I just love the entire concept.

This review has been all praise, I know, but it was a long time ago that I fell this hard for a book. I thought it was amazing, it made me cry and it was seriously impossible for me to put down. I read it in one sitting, and I wish it had been longer. I also hope it doesn't take another five years for her next book to be released, but I will gladly wait that long if it is this good.

Now go read it!

Have you read this book? Did you like it as much as I did?

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Book Review: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Title: The Great Gatsby
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
Genre: Classics, Fiction
Pages: 192
Published: April 10th, 1925

SummaryTHE GREAT GATSBY, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s third book, stands as the supreme achievement of his career. This exemplary novel of the Jazz Age has been acclaimed by generations of readers. 

The story of the fabulously wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, of lavish parties on Long Island at a time when The New York Times noted “gin was the national drink and sex the national obsession,” it is an exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s. - Goodreads


Review: (Spoiler-free)

I haven't read a whole lot of classics, but I have read enough of them to see a pattern - in my opinion, they tend to be slow reads. With this in mind, I was excited to start this book. It is quite short, but the movie is so long (haven't watched it, I just saw on netflix that it was over two hours ;) ) I simply guessed it must have a lot of content instead. Also, it's The Great Gatsby. If only to understand the references, I would want to read it. 

It was as I had thought - The Great Gatsby had the typical language of a classic novel - slow, reasonable, somewhat distant. A man telling a story, not living in it. But since it was something I expected, I actually enjoyed it. A slow burner, but it also burns longer afterward, and it suits both the time and the story. The character Nick Carraway is the one retelling what has happened and he is the definition of a reasonable man.

“I hope she'll be a fool -- that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.”

On to the story itself - I had thought this would be more of a love-story. It was, of course, but I feel like the focus wasn't on the love itself but on the dream of the past, on Gatsby's fame and what, in the end, it was worth. The more I think about it, the more I like it. It is a good story, of loneliness and how different events can line up to disaster. What's nice about the story also is that you get to know what you need to know - what happens in between the important events is not told, because it isn't needed in the story. 

There's not a lot to say besides that. The story was good, the pace was slow but still moving forward and I found myself liking most of the characters, flaws and all. If you haven't read the book yet and your thinking of doing it, you should, definitely! But take it for what it is, because then you will really appreciate it.

Have you read The Great Gatsby? What did you think?

Monday, September 7, 2015

5 favorite things with autumn

Ever since I was little, I've always loved the Fall - it's the season when everything becomes cozy, and starts over again after summer. I know I am not the only one who loves this time of year, in fact most of us bookworms do. Especially if we can settle down by a window with a good book. Now that September is here, I thought I would share a few things I love when autumn comes around. Hope you like it!

Autumn is the season of Hot chocolate, and I like to have a cup by my side while I read. Some of us like tea better, and for the sake of my health I try to vary between the two. It doesn't work very well, haha.

I love socks and I love blankets around me, at all times. The truth is, I can open a window just to get to cover myself up in knitted things.

There's no sound like rain hammering against the roof to prove it is finally autumn. We do have a lot of rain here during autumn, but if I want the rainy feeling and the weather is not complying, I sometimes go onto www.rainymood.com to get my rain anyways. This is one of my favorite sites, hot tip!

Not everyone likes to read to music, or sounds at all. But if you are like me and you do, here is the playlist I like to have in the background right now. It is so cozy!

Of course, candles are great during autumn. I like to have mine close to my book so that I can read in the light of them. Other lamps are to strong and destroy the mood - here, again, I usually open a window. Anything for cozy fall-reading!

What are your favorite things with Autumn? 

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Book Review: P.S. I still Love You by Jenny Han

Title: P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before #2)
Author: Jenny Han
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 337
Published: May 26th, 2015

Don't read the summary if you haven't read the first book in the series! Contains spoilers.

Summary: Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. 

Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.

When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once? 

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of makes it so amazing- Goodreads


Review: (Spoiler-free)

I read the first book in this series, To All the Boys I've Loved Before, last summer and as for most who have read that book, it was an instant love-affair. I was never a big fan of Jenny Han's Summer-trilogy, but I was so excited for the release of this book, because the story of Lara Jean and Peter has got to be the sweetest story I have ever read. 

That's the word for it. Sweet. Multiple times when reading this on the train, I caught myself thinking, Wonder what the rest of the passengers are thinking when they see me smiling like crazy, nose in a book. But they don't understand, because they are not inside the adorable mind of Lara Jean.

“So much of love is chance. There's something scary and wonderful about that.” 
It is not an action- packed book, but it's so cozy and I enjoyed reading about the small things in Lara Jeans everyday life, such as what kind of cookies she bakes and her conversations with her little sister Kitty. The focus is of course on Lara Jean, but I love how the characters around her get their own space in the story, and especially her family. Family is often forgotten in YA literature, but they are such a big part of life. In this case, they are also very funny.

Lara Jean is, like I mentioned above, such a cute character. But she also feels real, and a lot of the feelings and thoughts she's having, I can easily relate to and that's part of why I love her so much. This duology is driven by characters, and is basically about first love and growing up. Even though it at times is slow-paced and a little predictable, it is definitely worth your time. If you havent yet picked up these books, you should!

By the way, for those of you who have read it: I know a lot of people would have preferred Lara Jean to choose differently, but I am happy with the ending. Thank you, Jenny Han, for agreeing with me on who Lara Jean should be with!

(Almost a four!)

Other books in the series (Goodreads links)
1. To All the Boys I've Loved Before
2. P.S. I Still Love You

Have you read this book? What did you think?

Friday, September 4, 2015

The Fifth Wave - First official trailer

The first official trailer for The Fifth Wave is finally here! I'm so excited. Have you watched it yet?

I really loved the book, but I wasn't all happy with the casting choices when I found them out. In the trailer though, I think the actors seem fitting for the roles, from what little we get to see. Hurray!

Also, it might just be me, but in the trailer it looks as if Cassie and Ben already know each other. Anybody who knows if they've changed the storyline for the film? 

What do you think of the trailer? Are you excited for the movie?

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

August 2015: Wrap-Up + September TBR

The last month of summer is officially over and the September rain has already started pouring outside my window (it's pouring right now). Here's a recap of my August :)

1. The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima
2. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
3. The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
4. P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han

None of the reviews for these are up yet, but I'm working on it, and they'll all be posted during September. Titles are linked to Goodreads!

Reviews: 2
August-favorite: P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han
Pages read: 1135
In Progress: Legend by Marie Lu

I didn't have time to read as much this month as I did the last, with school starting up again and everything. But the books I read were good and I have made a time-schedule for my writing to keep going on the manuscript I'm working on. If it works out as I have planned, I'll be roughly finished by Christmas :)

Gilmore girls - TV-series
Frames - Album by Lee Dewyze (Link)


• 1984 by George Orwell
• Legend by Marie Lu
• I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson

I'll also continue to write on my first draft of my fiction story, like I mentioned above, and just generally celebrate autumn with tea, candles and rain-soundtracks. Another thing I'm excited about is, a few days ago, I got an Instagram-account called @brundellsbooks so I'll be posting photos there as well!

Did you read something good this month? What do you like to read in the fall? :)