Tuesday, 29 December 2015

My Favorite Reads of 2015

Hi everyone! I've seen posts like this floating around and I really couldn't pin it down to a number. I've read many books this year and I decided to write a post of my favorite reads of 2015. Some books were published in 2015, but others I simply discovered in 2015! :D If I wrote a full-review on a particular book, I will link it! 

1. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
Review: Here!

2. You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost): A Memoir by Felicia Day
Review: Here!

3. Hear the Wind Sing and Pinball, 1973 - Two Novels by Haruki Murakami
Review: Here!

4. Armada by Ernest Cline
Review: Here!

5. The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi
Review: Here!

6. China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan
Review: Here!

7. In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume
Review: Here!

8. Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella
Review: Here!

9. Free Days with George by Colin Campbell
Review: Here!

10. We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen
Review: Here!

11. The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy - A Handbook for Girl Geeks by Sam Maggs
Review: Here!

12. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Review: Here!

13. At The Water's Edge by Sara Gruen
Review: Here!

14. All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Review: Here!

15. All The Rage by Courtney Summers
Review: Here! 

16. Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives by Gretchen Rubin
Review: Here!

17. The Wild Oats Project: One Woman's Midlife Quest for Passion at Any Cost by Robin Rinaldi
Review: Here!

18. Hausfrau by Jill Alexander Essbaum
Review: Here!

19. Mosquitoland by David Arnold
Review: Here!

20. The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
Review: Here!

21. I'll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios
Review: Here!

22. If I Fall, If I Die by Michael Christie
Review: Here!

23. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Review: Here! 

24. The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood
I loved this quirky book so much! I also got to meet Margaret earlier this year which was amazing! 

25. Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling 
This book was hilarious and everything I hoped for! As a big fan of Mindy, I was not disappointed! 

26. The Lake House by Kate Morton 
I listened to this as an audiobook and I loved it a lot. What a truly wonderful story!

27. Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
I also listened to this as an audiobook and it was hilarious! 

28. Tokyo Ghoul #1 by Sui Ishida
I started this manga series this year and it has seriously blown me away! Wonderful story! 

29. Jessica Jones: Alias Vol #1 by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos
With the release of the Netflix series, I picked up the graphic novel. It was so good and I can't wait to read the rest in the series. The art is beautiful and I love learning more about Jessica. 

And my favorite read of 2015 is...... *drum roll* 
30. I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson
Review: Here!

Well, I hope that you all enjoyed my huge list of favorite reads! If you have read any of the books that I've mentioned, please let me know in the comments below what you thought! Also if you could please let me know YOUR favorite book of 2015, I would love to add some new reads to my TBR pile! :D 

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Bookish Gift Guide: Stocking Stuffers!

Hi everyone! It is the holiday season and I thought I would make a few "batch" reviews in the form of gift guides to help give you ideas for holiday gifts! It will follow the regular Padfoot's Library review format where I offer the premise, my overall review and thoughts and rating. I will also include where you can go buy each book as well. I will start this off with Stocking Stuffers! Stockings are often filled with cosmetics, magazines, toys, but why not books? I've included some "smaller" sized books which I think would make lovely stocking stuffers!

Brave Enough by Cheryl Strayed 

Publishing Date: October 27, 2015
Publisher: Knopf Canada
Pages: 160 pages

The Premise: From the NYT Best-Selling author of Wild comes a small collection of quotes picked from her previous works: Torch and Tiny Beautiful Things. Wild is also featured as well. This collection of quotes has more than 100 quotations that will inspire readers to be "brave" and to do better not only for others but for ourselves. 

My overall thoughts and review: I've only read snippets of Strayed's work in the past but when I read the premise of this book, I was instantly intrigued. I'm really into collecting motivational/self-help books, especially ones that are small and pocket-sized that I can carry with me. I find that having a small book of quotations really helps me manage my anxiety when it gets a bit too much to handle. I've always been one to turn to quotations and song lyrics to help me understand and deconstruct my feelings and emotions. This book was incredibly insightful and offered a lot in terms of love and compassion, not only for others but one self. I really enjoyed this book and I have actually been carrying it around with me a lot recently. I find that you don't have to read it from start to finish, and you can easily turn to a page daily and embrace the quote before you. This would make a lovely stocking stuffer because it is small, but it definitely packs a punch! I think it is also a good segway for those interested in Cheryl Strayed and this is easily a great place to start!

My rating of the book:  (5/5 stars) 

Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand in the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes

Publishing Date: November 10, 2015
Publisher: Simon and Schuster 
Pages: 336 pages

The Premise: From the creator of Grey's Anatomy, Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away With Murder comes a lovely memoir about how saying YES for a year changed her life. Shonda Rhimes offers some insight into her life as a mother, a writer and an introvert. 

My overall thoughts and review: When I heard that Shonda Rhimes was coming out with a book, I was instantly excited! I am a big fan of Shonda's shows and I know that at times.. with character deaths, I get a teensy bit emotional and yes, I tend to blame Shonda.. I'm a big fan of hers. I love the characters she created and the worlds she's been able to build. I literally devote my Thursday nights to her shows. I was so excited to learn more about the woman behind all of these shows. I also was super intrigued by the title and grinned like an idiot when I saw it. There is a shout out to Meredith Grey, Christina Yang and Olivia Pope all in the title! First off, I need to say that the way Shonda writes this book, it really feels like you are sitting down with her having a conversation but also as if you've also crept into her mind and you can see how all her thoughts flow. She writes in a stream of consciousness style which I really enjoyed. I loved learning more about Shonda and how she manages three big shows and also is a mother as well. 

But the parts of the book that I really empathized with were the moments she talked about her being an introvert and how saying yes to things really changed her. I wouldn't consider myself a complete introvert because at times, if you met me for the first time, you wouldn't think so yourself. But when anxiety takes over, I feel "introverted" in the sense, where I would rather say no to things, in fear of the outcome and I'm beginning to learn how that often can result in missed opportunities. When Shonda says that the things she couldn't say, she got Christina Yang to say, it really helped me understand why I empathized with a character like Christina so much. Why when she left the show, I felt like a part of me left the show. (SPOILER ALERT - I'M SORRY. but if you didn't know, where have you been?!). Every Thursday night when I watched Christina battle and struggle and fight for what she wanted, I immediately felt inspired and I wanted to be Christina. Though when the show ended at 9:00pm, I would think to myself.. I couldn't do that. I'm not in the world of Seattle Grace, it isn't happening. But when Shonda explained how she was able to move beyond that world and say yes to scary things and conquer her fears, I felt so much better and my inspiration didn't simply stop when I finished the book. I don't know if this is making sense, because it seems like I'm rambling a bit. But I wanted to say that, hearing Shonda's journey truly inspired me. I say no quite too often and I end up in a cycle of self-hate and regret. I know things are scary but like Shonda, I'm going to take the risk more often and learn to be my own person. Thank you Shonda for demonstrating to your readers that you don't need a McDreamy or Fitz (though.. I really do love Fitz) to dance it out, stand in the sun and be your own person. You just have to take the plunge and do it yourself. I think this is a wonderful book and I would highly recommend it. Even if you aren't familiar with Shondaland, it is definitely worth reading if you want to step outside of your comfort zone! 

My rating of the book:  (5/5 stars) 
Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book from Simon and Schuster Canada for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Gratitude by Oliver Sacks

Publishing Date: November 24, 2015
Publisher: Knopf Canada
Pages: 64 pages

The Premise: From the best-selling author that spoke about medical illnesses, comes a collection of four essays that he wrote during the last few months of his life. He writes about completing life and describes coming to terms with his own fate. 

My overall review and thoughts: I have been a fan of Oliver Sacks' writing for quite some time. When he passed away last year, I felt truly saddened by the news because his writing definitely inspired me and was one of the books that paved the way for my graduate school career. I remember falling in love with his text, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for A Hat in one of my undergraduate courses. His writing was poignant, but he was able to convey his ideas in such an eloquent way that stayed with the reader long after you closed the book. The last thing I read by him was On the Move, his autobiography which I really enjoyed and would recommend as well, but Gratitude, really sat with me on an entirely different level. Sacks tackles a fear that sits within us all, the fear of the end, the fear of death. He also speaks about how quickly time can pass and how sometimes, one spends their time in regret of "wasting time." I'm only twenty-five and I already feel these thoughts on a daily basis, but what Gratitude did for me was inspire me to look forward as opposed to looking back. To have Gratitude for what has been done and look forward for what's to come. I also felt significantly inspired to write more "essays" in this format in my own work because I often find that I have to have one-set narrative, but Sacks demonstrates time and time again with his writing, that multiple narratives can come from it. Having read a lot of Sacks already, I felt truly sad, but in a good way when I finished this book. It has made me look at my sadness for an author I truly admired in a different way. As opposed to lingering on how unfair it is, I will look forward to reading and re-reading Sacks writings and work to come to terms with fate and to embrace it. I think this is a lovely book for a friend or family member for the holiday season. It really illuminates what is important and what one should focus on. 

My rating of the book:  (5/5 stars) 
Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book from Penguin Random House Canada for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

I hope that you all enjoyed this first instalment of Bookish Gift Guides! I will have another one up shortly featuring some of my favorite books from this year! :D Please let me know in the comments what other books you'd recommend as stocking stuffers and if you plan to pick up any of these books that I've mentioned! Happy reading AND shopping :D 

Thursday, 5 November 2015

#GLB2015 Blog Tour - Review: Martin John by Anakana Schofield

Hi everyone! Today is the fourth stop on the Giller Light Bash 2015 Blog Tour! Giller Light Bash 2015 is next week and it helps support Canadian Literature and the Frontier College. I hear that there is also going to be an actual red carpet and essentially, a fun night for all book lovers! You can still get tickets -> here! This blog tour is meant to highlight the five short listed books for the Scotiabank Giller Prize! Yesterday's post was by Jessica over at Not My Typewriter, where she reviewed Outline by Rachel Cusk - you can see the post here. For my post, I will be reviewing Martin John by Anakana Schofield. Most people might know Schofield from her previous award-winning novel, Malarky

Martin John by Anakana Schofield 

Publishing Date: September 15, 2015
Publisher: Biblioasis
Pages: 282 pages

The Premise: Martin John's mam says that she is glad he is done with it. But is Martin John done with it? He says he wants it to stop, his mother wants it to stop, we all want it to stop. But is it really what Martin John wants? He had it in his mind to do it and he did it. Harm was done when he did it. Harm would continue to be done. Who will stop Martin John? Will you stop him? Should she stop him? [excerpt from Biblioasis] - I thought it might be better to have that excerpt from the publisher to kind of set the premise for the book. It follows Martin John, a character that is clearly troubled and his part in "it" -- which is never defined for the character. In this strange, mysterious and uncomfortable read, Schofield takes the reader into the mind of a man that might fear many.

My overall thoughts and review: To begin with, the design and structure of this book was what I found instantly intriguing. I was curious to see how the rest of the story would unfold and if there was a reason for having only a few sentences on a page, small bullet points and fragmented conversations. The reader is immediately introduced to Martin John, who has done it and essentially harm is done. It is never defined to the reader or said directly, but it becomes clear as you move forward in the book what Martin John has done and who he is exactly. For those unsure whether or not to take the plunge and want to know more about the book, Martin John is a sexual offender. The book takes us into the mind of this very disturbed man. Schofield is clearly writing from the perspective of not wanting the reader to have empathy or sympathy for Martin John, but rather to allow the reader to have an understanding of him and his motives. I'll be honest, the book definitely made me more uncomfortable as I read on and discovered that he was a sexual offender and there were scenes that really made me want to put the book down. I thought from the very beginning that it, had to do with murder, which definitely would be a bad thing as well. But I guess, I was a little surprised. It is definitely a taboo topic and Schofield works in such an interesting way that she does not offer the reader all the details, but rather the pieces of the puzzle to put together and simultaneously making the reader uncomfortable as if she offered all the details.

The text definitely made me uncomfortable because at times, you feel conflicted because you want to have a deeper understanding of the mechanics of this disturbed individual, but also because it shows the harsh reality of the mental health system. Sexual offenders are a taboo topic in literature and usually it is from the perspective of those who were affected by them. Furthermore, some believe that rehabilitation is simply not possible. The reader gets an inside look in some moments about how the psychiatric system handles individuals like Martin John and in a way, gets to see how the system can sometimes fail individuals like Martin John. I think that it was incredibly brave of Schofield to tackle such a dark topic and although the text certainly does not warrant any sympathy for the character of Martin John, I closed the book with a deeper understanding of all the nuts and bolts in the mind of Martin John. I also think the book encourages more discussion surrounding the topic of sexual offenders and the mental health system. The book definitely made me uncomfortable about 90% of the time, but like Patrick Dewitt said, I am in agreement that it is a "necessary" text to bring about further discussion.

The book is available for purchase at: Chapters/Indigo

Be sure to check out Jenn's post tomorrow on Arvida over at Lost in a Great Book!

Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book for my participation in the #GLB2015 Blog Tour for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Review: Binge by Tyler Oakley

Binge by Tyler Oakley

Publishing Date: October 20, 2015
Publisher: Gallery Books
Pages: 320 pages

The Premise: Famous youtuber, Tyler Oakley has come out with a book! For those of you that don't know Tyler, he is an incredibly funny, down to earth, charming youtuber who found his people with his viral videos. In this memoir, Tyler offers his readers a collection of essays where he speaks about his childhood, things that he's learned, things that he's obviously binged on and his career. Fans of Tyler Oakley will definitely enjoy this read but for those that don't know him, it is the perfect introduction!

My overall thoughts and review: "Hey everyone! My name is Tyler Oakley!" - I've been a big fan of Tyler for a couple of years now and when I heard that he was coming out with a book, I have to admit I was a bit hesitant. It seems that a lot of youtubers were recently coming out with books and I think with the transition from youtube content to books can be a tricky one. You want to be able to have the same charm that your videos have, but you also want to give people a reason to go out and get your book that is somewhat different from your videos. Tyler Oakley does exactly that. So before I get into my review, I want to say Congratulations, Tyler on a wonderful debut. I only know about Tyler through what he shares on his videos and social media, but a few things that has made me a fan over the years is his work with the Trevor Project, his love for all things food and how he is able to go outside the box. Also his yearly Auguest videos are some of my favorites, especially his collaborations with Mamrie Hart, Hannah Hart and Grace Helbig!

So yes, about the book. What is Binge really about? In his introduction, he encourages his readers to binge "on the things that bring fulfillment and happiness and satisfaction and make you feel alive" (1). He obviously goes onto mention that sometimes this may end in it not being a great outcome, but nevertheless, bad moments in life should be taken as a moment of learning and creating balance in one's life. His collection of essays therefore shares his secrets about the times he's binged for the better or the worse, but regardless, he will tell you about it. It has been said that even if you've watched every single one of his videos, you will still not know some things that are mentioned in Binge, which had me intrigued from the start, and Tyler definitely follows through with this statement. First chapter he shares a big secret and immediately gets the book rolling for us all.

I don't want to spoil it and get into details, because ultimately, you should go out and read this book and learn those secrets for yourself. But I will say, as I was reading, I definitely heard Tyler's voice throughout. I laughed while reading like I do when I watch his videos, and I also smiled a ton while reading, just like I do when I watch his videos too. Tyler is honest, hilarious and incredibly sweet and it is very clear that he is a very down to earth human. My favorite chapters from the book definitely have to be Anything for a Dollar, The One That Got Away (Tyler, if I could, I would give you a massive hug), 20 Things I'd Do If I Were Beyonce for a Day and Dream Job. It was so interesting to learn about Tyler's journey! So in conclusion, I really enjoyed this book. It was MORE than what I was anticipating and a great delight to read. Again, fans of Tyler will definitely enjoy this and for those that don't know him, what are you waiting for? Go out and pick up a copy of Binge because you will definitely fall in love with him after reading it!

My rating of the book: ✮ (4/5 stars) 

Now available for purchase at:
Chapters/Indigo and Book Depository (Free Worldwide Shipping)

Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book from Simon and Schuster Canada for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Blog Tour: The Searcher by Simon Toyne - Review

Hi everyone! I hope you are all doing well. Today is the second stop on The Searcher blog tour! :D

The Searcher by Simon Toyne 

Publishing Date: October 6, 2015
Publisher: HarperCollins
Pages: 480 pages

The Premise: In the town of Redemption, Arizona, the townspeople have gathered to bury a local man named James Coronado. However, the ceremony is disrupted when there is a plane crash. There is a tall man, running towards the crash with no memory of who he is. All he is in his possession is a handmaid suit jacket with his name inscribed to him and a book as well. The name is Solomon Creed. Solomon believes that he has arrived in Redemption for one reason and that is to save a life. Unfortunately, that turns out to be difficult because the man he intends to save was the local man buried earlier in the day.

My overall thoughts and review: When Karen contacted me about this book, she first said that it was perfect for fans of World War Z, which is a book that I've loved for a while now. I instantly signed up and I wasn't sure what to expect with this book. It is the first book in a new series which follows Solomon Creed, so for a first novel, it is pretty enticing. The story is quite mysterious because the reader does not know who Solomon is and we are following along to learn more about him. But I think there is a type of mystery that lingers not just around Solomon, but the entire town of Redemption and the other characters. Toyne gives us some detail about the town and characters, but then pulls away, somehow making us ponder more about them. I quite like this style, because it makes for a pretty awesome reveal (Kind of reminded me of Oscar Wilde's style). I was constantly unsure of what to think of certain characters like Morgan and Solomon, and I'm really glad that the book surpassed my expectations for it (I won't get into detail because Spoilers!! and it is the first book in the series). What I particularly enjoyed was that the narrative went beyond the typical black and white structure of who is clearly good and clearly bad and this structure alternated multiple times throughout the text as the reader uncovered more and more secrets. Also have the present time narrative and excerpts of Riches and Redemptions throughout the book really helped the reader get a clear sense of the past and present. Overall, I thought that this was a wonderful mystery/suspense novel that incorporated many details such as themes of identity, religion and space and I can't wait to see where Toyne takes the series next! Also sidenote, but for fans of The Deadbeat Club by Dietrich Kalteis (which happens to be the book I was a book club leader for at this year's WoTS), this book definitely reminded me of it and I think you will enjoy this if you enjoyed that book! :)

My rating of the book:  (4/5 stars) 

Now available for purchase at: Chapters/Indigo

Also, I'm going to encourage you all add The Searcher on your 50 Book Pledge To Read Shelf because it is going to be the featured read of the week: http://50bookpledge.ca/ :)

Be sure to check out other stops on the tour: 
Mon Oct 19 – Jenn @ Lost in a Great Book 
Tues Oct 20 – Christine @ Padfoot’s Library 
Weds Oct 21 – Jaclyn @ Literary Treats 
Thurs Oct 22 – Andrea @ Cozy Up With a Good Read 
Fri Oct 23 – Michele @ Just a Lil’ Lost 

Disclaimer: I received an advanced reader's copy from HarperCollins Canada as a part of this Blog tour for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Friday, 2 October 2015

Blog Tour: Madly by Amy Alward - Review and Spellbinding Wallpapers

Hi everyone! I have such an exciting post for you all today! I am participating in the MADLY Blog tour for Amy Alward's new book Madly. In regular fashion, I will first start the post with an in-depth review and for my stop on the tour, I will be sharing with you all some awesome downloadable content! So let's get started! 

Review: Madly by Amy Alward 
Publishing Date: September 29, 2015
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Pages: 384 pages
Young Adult Fantasy Romance

The Premise: This new book by Amy Alward brings together alchemists, magics, spells, a hunt and romance. The narrative follows Samantha Kemi who comes from a long line of famous alchemists. Unfortunately with time, people have moved to more synthetic choices as opposed to natural elements so the shop that Samantha's family owns is facing some hard times. There is an opportunity to change this when Princess Evelyn is poisoned by a strong ancient love potion that made her fall madly in love with herself. There is a hunt to find a cure for this and the winner shall bring about many winnings. Samantha looks at this hunt as an opportunity to revive her family name. Things however get complicated when her opponent is Zain Aster, who also happens to be who the love potion was originally intended for, and also who she may be falling for. 

My overall thoughts and review: When I was first pitched this book I was super intrigued. It sounded to me like a hybrid of Amanda Hocking's books and Sarah J. Maas' Throne of Glass series - so I was instantly sold. What I did not expect was a book that was a perfect blend of action and light-heartedness. Alward has put together a pretty magical world and offers a lot of detail to the reader, but does not overdo it to the point where it feels like it is ~high fantasy~, it is the perfect dose. Alward also creates very likeable characters. I instantly liked Samantha and her bestfriend Anita and seeing their dynamic regardless of the tricky circumstances they found themselves in, in which they were opponents. I also really liked Zain instantly - he is mysterious but also does right by his family, which is what I think is the compelling common factor between him and Samantha. I also found the passages of Princess Evelyn and Eve and Lyn quite interesting and funny. I kept going "omg is this for real" but Alward describes it so perfectly, Evelyn was really in love with herself. It was so intriguing! Overall, I really enjoyed this book and the world that Alward created. She offered incredibly likeable characters, an interesting dynamic of relationships all in a face paced adventure that looks for rare ingredients. There is an emphasis on romance of course, but what I really took away from it is the significance of friendship and family which sometimes gets sidelined in YA novels. I really hope that there will be more to come from this world because I really enjoyed it! 

My rating of the book:  (5/5 stars) 

Now available for purchase at: Chapters/Indigo

Spellbinding Wallpapers
The lovely individuals over at S&S Canada have created some awesome spellbinding wallpapers for you all. There are 3 sizes available for desktop and even one for your cellphone! Just click on them to enlarge and download to use :) 
1024 x 768 wallpaper
1440 x 900 wallpaper
1900 x 1200 wallpaper
For cellphones! 

Be sure to check out the other stops on the blog tour! :D 

Disclaimer: I received an advanced reader's copy from Simon and Schuster Canada as a part of this Blog tour for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Saturday, 12 September 2015

Top Recommendations: Colouring Books for Adults

Hi everyone! :D So it appears in the recent months that the new addition of colouring books for adults has taken over the world. They are literally everywhere. Every time I pop into a bookstore, I see a table just for colouring books. It is so awesome! A few posts back, I mentioned some of my favorite colouring books that have been helpful with de-stressing and dealing with anxiety, which you can read here! I thought I'd put together a post offering some of my top recommendations for colouring books :) 

1. The Nature Coloring Book by Editors of Thunder Bay Press
Publisher: Thunder Bay Press
Pages: 256 pages
Available for purchase: Chapters/Indigo 

2. The Vintage Coloring Book by Editors of Thunder Bay Press
Publisher: Thunder Bay Press
Pages: 256 pages
Available for purchase: Chapters/Indigo

3. Color Me Happy by Lacy Mucklow
Illustrator: Angela Porter
100 Coloring Templates That Will Make You Smile
Publisher: Race Point Publishing
Pages: 208 pages
Available for purchase: Chapters/Indigo

4. Color Me Calm by Lacy Mucklow
Illustrator: Angela Porter
100 Coloring Templates For Meditation and Relaxation 
Publisher: Race Point Publishing
Pages: 208 pages
Available for purchase: Chapters/Indigo

5. Colour Me Good Harry Styles by Mel Elliot 
Publisher: I Love Mel
Pages: 32 pages
Available for purchase: Chapters/Indigo
(how could I resist this one? ;))

Please let me know in the comments below if you own any of these books and what you think of them! Also if you plan on picking any of these up, please let me know! :) These are some of my favorite colouring books that I keep returning to! I will have more recommendation posts for future colouring books because my collection is quite big ;) 

Happy colouring! :D 

Disclaimer: I received an copy of The Nature Coloring Book and The Vintage Coloring Book from Raincoast Books for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Friday, 11 September 2015

Review: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Publishing Date: September 1, 2015
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Pages: 320 pages
Young Adult Contemporary

The Premise: The story follows Madeline who is basically allergic to the world. She has a form of severe combined immunodeficiency which is also known as the "bubble baby disease" (3). Madeline has not left her house in 17 years and the only people she really sees and interacts with is her mother and her nurse, Clara. However, things change when she has a new neighbour named Olly. It seems impossible to make friends let alone have a romantic relationship form, but Madeline definitely does fall for Olly. Given the circumstances, things become problematic from there.

My overall thoughts and review: When I was first pitched this book earlier this year by one of the lovely gal's at RHC, I was instantly intrigued! She had mentioned that she finished it in one sitting and when I got the book, it was the same case. I could not put this book down! Within the first five pages there are cute illustrations and charts which immediately draw you in. I just instantly fell in love with Madeline as a character. This isn't a spoilery thing but the opening line of the book is: "I've read many more books than you" (1). I instantly felt like I was in Madeline's shoes and that I could totally connect with her on a different level. I loved how much character development there was for Madeline throughout the book and you could just see how much strength she was able to convey given her circumstances. I also really loved her relationship with her nurse Clara and it reminded me of my relationship with my aunt. The main focal point is the love story with Olly, which was incredibly swoon-worthy. Olly and Madeline are incredibly sweet and it is so nice to see how the love story unfolds - my favorite parts were definitely the cute IM messages! I will say that this book totally surprised me with how things turned towards the end. I'm not going to spoil it, but it only made me more proud of Madeline! :) My only wish is that the book was longer because as the title, it was truly everything, everything.

My rating of the book:  (5/5 stars) 

Now available for pre-order purchase at:
Chapters/Indigo and Book Depository (Free Worldwide Shipping)

Disclaimer: I received an advanced reader's copy of this book from Random House Canada for consideration/review. All opinions are my own.