The Girl Who Was Supposed To Die by April Henry

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After waking up in a cabin with no memory of how she got there, Cady starts to panic. Soon after regaining consciousness, she hears her captors talking hears one of them tell the other to take her out back and “finish her off”. After managing to escape, she has no idea where to go…she has no money, doesn’t remember her name, and doesn’t know what happened to her.

In her run from these men, she meets Ty, who ends up accompanying her on her journey to get to safety. What Cady does know is that she’s still in danger, she just doesn’t know why.

I’ve had a few less than stellar reads lately, and I was hoping this quick thriller would be just the thing to break my drought. Unfortunately, it didn’t do it for me. It wasn’t quite what I was expecting, and felt more like an action book than a thriller. The end also took a turn I wasn’t expecting – very similar to The Outliers, which was another book I didn’t like.
What I did like was Cady and her friendship with Ty. I did find it a little unrealistic that they bonded so quickly and that Ty innately trusted Cady when she didn’t even know who she was or what happened to her, but they were good together and relied on each other, which while not always believable, was a nice add to the story, especially considering most of the characters weren’t super developed and were often flat.

Overall, I don’t have a ton to say about the book, which is probably fitting considering it was only ~200 pages long. It was a very quick read, and if you like action books/movies with a touch of biological warfare, this will be the perfect choice for you.

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Divergent by Veronica Roth

image of book cover of Divergent

The book series called Divergent is an interesting one. It is the first book in a three-part series (Divergent, Insurgent, Allegiant). This was a book recommended by a friend who has a similar taste in books. Overall, I enjoyed this book, though some parts were questionable.
Divergent is about a future Chicago where everybody is split into factions. There are 5 factions with different attributes associated with it. There is Abnegation (Selflessness), Amity (Peaceful), Candor (Truthful), Dauntless (Brave), and Erudite (Smart). When you turn 16 you go through a test in which you are given a faction that is mostly likely one that you would be placed in based on what you pick in the test. There is then a ceremony where you must pick where you live, work, and do everything for the rest of your life. There are tests to get into the faction and if you don’t pass you could become factionless. However, there are people called the Divergent. These people can do things like manipulate the tests and be aware that they are in a simulation (whereas normal people can’t).
Beatrice Prior (Now known as Tris) was born and raised in Abnegation where everything they do has to be selfless, whether it means eating the simplest food or letting other people get on the bus before you. When she takes her aptitude test to see which faction she is fit for, the person administering it stops and says she is Divergent. She says this is dangerous, not to tell anyone, and then manually logs the data saying Tris is Abnegation. When the ceremony comes around Tris must make a hard decision. She picks Dauntless, where they are all about being brave. She has a large amount of experiences, losses, and rivalry along the way. She also meets a person named Four (Tobias Eaton). They start to have a romantic relationship but must keep it a secret. They then discover a plot against the Abnegation, started by the Erudite who want power, and powered by the Dauntless because they have skills in combat. They are being controlled by a serum that had been injected unknowingly. Since Tris is Divergent she is not affected. She needs to save her friends and stop the Erudite from killing all the Abnegation.
I overall enjoyed this book a lot. The only parts I didn’t like were when she was talking with Four. The way that it was described and, the way that they communicated seemed inappropriate for 16-year-olds. Besides that, and the fact that some parts are sad. It was a very good book and I would recommend it, especially if you are into books such as The Hunger Games, Percy Jackson, or Harry Potter.
I would rate this book a 9/10.

 

The Seven Deadly Sins(Season 1and 2): TV Show Review

Cover image features characters from the show The Seven Deadly Sins

The Seven Deadly Sins is about the country of Britannia in what seems to be set during the middle ages. The princess, Elizabeth stumbles upon the Boar Hat Tavern after running away from the kingdom. She ran away because the Holy Knights, who are the “supposed” guardians of Liones (kingdom in Britannia), attempt to overthrow the king. Elizabeth’s quest is the find the Seven Deadly Sins, the group that went rogue and murdered tons of Holy Knights in Liones only ten years ago. In the Boar Hat, Elizabeth finds Sir Meliodas, the captain and most powerful of the Sins. Little do they know that, the leaders of the Holy Knights Dreyfus and Hendrickson are attempting to bring back the legendary demon race by tricking failed Holy Knights into drinking Demon Blood. This not only makes them stronger but if their hate grows too strong, they will become a demon as well. Therefore, Meliodas, Elizabeth and the Seven Deadly Sins must take back Liones, the kingdom that framed them for a crime they didn’t commit, before the Grand Holy Knights can summon the demon race and end humanity.

Pros: This anime had a great story, which not only included great plot twists but also had loveable characters and a great sense of humor that anyone could adore.

Cons: Even though the story was fantastic, there are almost too many plot twists to keep up with.

Rating: 9/10

The Cruel Prince, by Holly Black

See the source image

The Cruel Prince, written by Holly Black, is a modern fantasy and a first book in the duology. The second book, The Wicked King, was recently released. It follows Jude, who along with her twin sister Taryn and her half-sister Vivienne, was taken to the fairy world by Vivienne’s true father.

This book was very highly anticipated, and people either loved it or hated it. I personally liked it. My favorite element was the school that Jude attended with the other fey her age; it gave a unique twist on a fantasy story that made it different from the others. Jude as a character was aggressive and impulsive, but I didn’t mind. I found myself thrilled when she kept fighting the bullying of Prince Cardan and his trio.

A problem many people seem to bring up is the romance between Jude and a certain character. In my opinion, there wasn’t a romance at all. At the end of the book the character confesses how he can’t stop thinking about her and then they kiss but for no reason? There wasn’t any reason for them to and they didn’t seem to enjoy it nor did they talk about it again so that was very strange. From what my friends and I can tell, there is no relationship between them because Jude doesn’t like him still and she betrayed him at the end, losing his trust and likely any romance they might have had.

I liked how the story brought out my emotions. I felt exhilarated while Jude argued with Cardan, sad when Jude complained about being mortal, and angry when betrayals occur. I loved how the mortal world was mixed in and how they would travel between realms, which added to the uniqueness of the novel. I did not like how the fey are as they are in every book: so incredibly perfect and beautiful that mortals can’t begin to compare. I don’t understand why this matters so much when writing about the fey, but it needs to end. This book would have been so much better if the world were expanded. How big is the realm? Is it only as small as the map in the beginning? If so, the author should have no trouble going in depth into all the places. I feel as though this depth would have made the story leave a more lasting effect on me. The writing style was very nice and easy to read, and the imagery was wonderful.

I would rate The Cruel Prince 8/10 dragons, for the unique twist on fey stories and the emotions it brought from me.

Charming Academy 2 – Review

Finding Prince Charming cover image. A horse standing on a path in the woods. The path is covered in red and orange leaves.

Finding Prince Charming, by Jessica L. Elliot.

This book is the second in the Charming Academy Series, and is about Princess Allegra and her quest to find Adrian, who disappeared during their fourth year at school. Allegra is more than a little worried about being the one going questing, but she will do anything to find Adrian.

(*Spoilers for the first book are included, and foreshadowing for this and following books are included, sorry.*)

Some things that we know about Allegra, just to give some perspective on where we are:

  • Allegra is Lucian’s sister.
  • She is stubborn and determined and fiercely loyal but lets her doubts rule sometimes.
  • Has a close relationship with her parents, grandparents, friends from school, and her brother especially.
  • Was the year behind her prince’s year, and so her last year of schooling is just her and Clarissa at school because her older friends are already on their quests.
  • Has a special necklace from Adrian the night he disappeared.
  • Flew into a rage and didn’t forgive people for a long time after Adrian’s disappearance, she loved him and needed to blame something.
  • Gets some lovely classes to help prepare her to do the searching for Adrian on her quest.
  • Loves Adrian lots and vowed to do anything to find him again.
  • Is deathly terrified of frogs.

Some basic knowledge of Adrian:

  • Is Lucian’s best friend.
  • Has a rocky family relationship that is resolved before he disappears.
  • Never broke any rules, was cursed for sticking out his tongue at friends by Lucretia, one of the school witches.
  • Doesn’t like swimming.
  • Is incredibly loyal and kind.
  • Starts to shrink, loose hair, go into hibernation in cold weather, and so forth as he turns into a frog slowly.
  • Goes and makes a deal with the witches the night before the winter meeting with the princesses in his fourth year so that he can look normal.
  • Gave Allegra her special necklace to remember him by.
  • His last words to Allegra an instant before he disappeared were that he loves her.
  • Is transported to Lucian and Allegra’s family’s castle by the sea as a frog to wait for Allegra to come find him.
  • Is heartbroken when Allegra sees him and runs away because he is a frog.
  • Gets to wait around as a frog, of all things, for Allegra to come save him.

In this book, Allegra gets to go questing for Adrian, the opposite of what she’d always believed would happen. She takes new classes her last two years of school to prepare her for the dangers of searching, along with learning the finer points of becoming a lady. Adrian gets to face the dangers of life as a frog, which can become incredibly difficult, especially in a fairytale quest where someone may be out to ruin said frog’s happily ever after.

I enjoyed this book a lot. It addressed the fact that the girls can do the questing and face just as many trials while waiting, which Adrian showed well. This was a fun and lighthearted twist on the Princess and the Frog that was action packed and serious enough to make it a good read for middle school kids. I also enjoyed the number of outside forces that affect this couple’s fairytale, but no dragons. This was kind of nice, to show that there are more dangers in the world than those that are just the biggest and most threatening at a glance.

Mary Poppins Returns: Movie Review

Mary Poppins Returns is a sequel Disney’s beloved Mary Poppins which came out 54 years before it.

It follows Michael Banks and his struggles after the death of his wife. His three children Anabel, John and Georgie have been forced to grow up and do work for their dad to keep the house orderly. When Jane Banks visits, the bank’s lawyers come by and tell the Banks family they have until Friday to pay the loan they took or their house would be foreclosed.

As Michael and Jane look for the shares their father left in the bank years before, the children are put in charge of buying the food. On their way to the market, the youngest child Georgie see’s a kite and grabs a hold. A strong wind pushes him upwards and he is pulled into the sky. Before he can float away, Mary Poppins floats down on her umbrella, saving him.

Just as Mary Poppins did in the first movie, she begins to teach the kids to be responsible but to have fun doing it. While visiting the bank to give their father his suitcase that he left at home, they overhear the president of the bank. He says that they’re basically stealing houses and the revenue of the bank is skyrocketing.

Can Mary Poppins and the Banks stop the bank or will they have their house taken away? Find out in Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns.

Pros: The songs are very well done, Emily Blunt and Lin Manuel Miranda were very pleasant to listen to, and the story is perfect for children.

Cons: The story was a little bland and the acting seem forced occasionally.

Rating: 8/10

A Review of Supernatural

Introduction

Supernatural is a TV show that is on Netflix and airs on TNT. Starting in 2005, It now has 13 current seasons, but is most likely making more. Each episode runs for about 30-45 minutes.

The show is produced by Eric Kripke and Robert Singer (Kripke Enterprises Wonderland Sound and Vision [2005–13] Warner Bros. Television).

The show starts by following two brothers Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles) Winchester quest to find their father (Jeff Morgan). Their father is a ghost/demon/ monster hunter and Dean follows his father’s foot steps, but Sam left them both for college until he reluctantly helps Dean find their father. After Sam and Dean’s little search, he returns home to find his girlfriend dead, murdered the same way his mom was when he was little, both the women were killed by a character called the yellow eyed demon.

Thought out the seasons the family faces different hardships and major demons, while also solving minor mysteries along the way. They also make new allies and enemies each season. A fan favorite example would be Castiel (Misha Collins) who plays and angel originally sent to assist Dean, he is introduced in season 3. Another favorite is Crowly, (Mark Sheppard) a demon acting as a temporary stand in for the king of hell, who is a comedic character introduced in season 5.

Overall Review

The first season starts off slow, the episodes are more repetitive and focused much less on the over arching theme then I would have liked. But with each season as the plot thickens and the characters develop more the show becomes a really great experience. All the actors are incredible and have grown close through their work, which makes the show feel all the more real. It’s a perfect balance of comedy, drama, mystery, and fear.

If you are not a fan of graphic content, this show is not for you. I myself, would originally skip the graphic scenes but they are not as bad in the later seasons.

The show has a very large fandom, and I am over all happy to be apart of it. I love when they break the fourth wall, it’s like the fans are in the show and interacting with the characters!

If this show sounds fun or interesting to you I suggest you give it a try, I love to watch it in the background of my homework or art because it is just so good!