Review: Death in Venice and Other Stories

Death in Venice and Other Stories (Vintage Classic Europeans ...

Talk about spicy translators!

This edition of Death in Venice and Other Stories starts with a 50-page-long introduction by the translator. And talk about spilling the tea on previous translators! But, despite the questionably relevant comments on previous translations, David Luke‘s introduction was rather insightful with regards to possible interpretations of the author’s stories.

Thomas Mann’s work is full of auto-biographical strokes. His father was a German business owner and city senator, while his mother was of German and Portuguese-Brazilian origin. The mother grew up in Brazil and was later sent to Germany by her father to get an education there. Mann’s references to his parents are present in several of his works, due to their strong influence on the author. The exotic musical mother helped him develop his artistic side, and the bourgeois father taught him discipline and hard work. These two different approaches to life resulted in a life-defining conflict for Mann: that between art and a bourgeois structure. This is a chasm that the author frequently explores in his stories, such as in Tonio Kröger. 

Having his family’s fortune available to him after his father’s death, Mann never truly devoted himself to his occasional, more “traditional” jobs. Instead, he quickly devoted himself to his literary interests. For a long time, Mann questioned his own contribution to society, given his situation of working as a writer and living off his inheritance. These doubts are the core of his short story, The Joker.

Mann struggled throughout his life, forced to hide his sexual orientation as homosexuality was highly condemned at the time. His hidden romantic desires and encounters were recorded in his diaries, which he went through a lot of trouble to keep secret during his life and which publication he timed for 100 years after his birth. Mann feared his work might lose public interest after his death and he counted on the revelation brought by the diaries to revive this interest. His predictions were correct, as the discovery of Mann’s homosexual nature shed new light on his works and led many to take on the endeavour of re-interpreting these.

In his extensive writing on the author, Mundt mentions that the content of Mann’s diaries represents “an appeal against sexual repression, a call for acceptance of difference, for tolerance and for humanity”. Having led a life of secrecy and inhibition, Mann was more than familiar with the theme of forbidden love. This is the subject matter of many of his works, such as Little Herr Friedemann, Tonio Kröger, and Death in Venice. His characters often love from afar beautiful youngsters that do not share the main character’s interests – this is particularly noticeable in Tonio Kröger. I personally found very intriguing this fascination of the complex character that is Tonio for Hans and Ingeborg, who he considered to lead plainer and, therefore, happier lives. Even more so when an older Tonio in a conversation with Lisaveta alienates himself from this bourgeois normality and slightly ostentatiously highlights the important role of the erudite artist.

I dived into this book expecting it to be a dense read. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find Mann’s writing quite accessible! Except for two passages, one in Gladius Dei and one in Tonio Kröger, which I had to reread to fully understand the author’s message, the book is crafted in a beautiful and accessible manner. Mann knew well how to guide the reader through the story balancing elegant descriptions with a moderate action pace. This collection of short stories is quite delightful and my only regret about it is not having read Tristan and Isolde yet, as I feel that this did not allow me to enjoy Mann’s short story Tristan to the fullest.

There are two short stories I’d like to discuss more in detail (having already ramble enough about Tonio Kröger by now): Death in Venice and The Joker.

DEATH IN VENICE

I will focus my points on Mann’s multi-layered presentation of Aschenbach’s obsession with young Tadzio. Firstly and shortly, I think it was a nice touch to have the pandemic’s culmination happen simultaneously to the zenith of the unhealthy romantic obsession of the old writer.

Secondly, the mixed feelings that this story provokes in the reader: I couldn’t help but feel disgusted with the situation, but also feel pity for Aschenbach and curious to see how the story would unfold.

The writer is absolutely blown away by the beauty of young Tadzio which causes an internal conflict in the main character, as Aschenbach positions himself as a man who values intellect over all else. This touches upon the already familiar debate on what constitutes art. Never actually getting to know the boy, Tadzio becomes more of an ideal than a real palpable human being. Tadzio represents aesthetic perfection. And Aschenbach becomes so obsessed with it that he desperately attempts to recover his own beauty and youthfulness by dying his hair and using an exaggerated amount of make-up. This transformation of Aschenbach’s character from a ponderate intellectual to a desperate romantic is fascinating.

Death in Venice is an uncomfortable yet gripping story that confronts the reader with feelings of obsession, inhibition, sympathy and decadence.

THE JOKER

I feel like the The Joker is an often undervalued tale of Mann’s. There are two topics that this stories delves into which were very personal to the author and I still find to be very relevant today.

Firstly, the topic of work. Much like Mann, the joker lives off his family fortune while leading a life of leisure. Such a life, with little work, is typically idealised but in this story we learn what other implications it might have. When the joker meets other characters who are part of the bourgeoisie, he is left questioning the usefulness of his life and his contribution to society. Due to his lifestyle, the joker spends most of his time by himself and this loneliness leads to a lack of identity – he feels lost, without structure. The role of work and leisure and how these shape our identity has remained an important topic until our days.

Secondly, the debate between an artistic existence and a bourgeois lifestyle – which stems from Mann’s relationship with his parents, as mentioned before. The joker falls for a blissful aristocratic lady and, while pursuing this passion, he is comforted with an internal dilemma. The main character preaches against the tedious bourgeois lifestyle but he now finds himself fascinated by these blissfully happy souls who are well-integrated in society. His choice of an artistic and creative life no longer seems exciting but rather embarrassing. The previously “unimaginative people” now seem like appealing happy souls to the joker.

This short story does not give the reader a straightforward answer. Rather it helps us ponder what it means, what value it brings and what costs it has to be integrated in society.

 

(References: David Luke’s introduction to the Vintage European’s “Death in Venice and Other Stories” edition and Hannelore Mundt’s “Understanding Thomas Mann”)

Review: Little Women

Little Women, Louisa May Alcott - eBook - BertrandOh, how I’m glad for contextual essays and supporting material!

When I finished reading “Little Women”, my first impression was that this might have been a relevant and somewhat disruptive book for its time, but it also conforms with a lot of presently outdated beliefs. By reading the contextual essays which the 150th Anniversary Annotated Edition includes, I was able to realise exactly how much change this tale brought about but also what and how cultural and social forces of the time influenced Alcott’s work.

The story of the March family is largely based on the author’s own family. Jo can be easily traced back to Louisa herself, while Meg, Beth, and Amy correspond to the author’s sisters Anna, Elizabeth, and May. The dreams and aspirations of the beloved characters can be spotted in the lives of these four women who also grew up in a family with fewer means, with a father who was often away from home, and a mother who the daughters idealized as having given her all to the family and the community.

Jo’s story, in particular, can be closely tied to that of Louisa Alcott. Standing out from her sisters due to her tomboyish and independent nature, the author too found a safe space in writing and developed literary ambitions early on in her life. This was an uncommon path for women at that time, which meant female authors had to work harder than their male counterparts in order to prove themselves and were often frowned upon even after achieving success. As one of Alcott’s neighbours, Nathaniel Hawthorne, “elegantly” puts it: “America is now wholly given over to a damned mob of scribbling women, and I should have no chance at success while the public taste is occupied with their trash – and should be ashamed with myself if I did succeed.”

Given the social landscape at the time of publication of “Little Women”, it is undeniable the impact that a character such as Jo had in young female readers in the 1800s. Jo unapologetically opens up a path for girls to be less feminine and delicate if they wish to and, to some extent, to follow their ambitions and pursue independence. Note I say “to some extent” here because indeed Jo ends up abandoning her seeking for literary greatness so as to dedicate herself to her marriage and children. This turn of events after Jo had stood her ground and repeatedly refused Laurie’s proposals disappointed me significantly. Enter contextual essays and supporting materials: Alcott would probably have chosen for Jo the same faith she chose for herself – that of a successful “literary spinster”. But due to pressure from the readers and her publisher to follow the conventions of the time, the author found a compromise in Mr Bhaer. The German character represents Jo’s possibility to remain herself, be her partner’s intellectual equal and contribute to the household evenly. Some theorise this was also Alcott’s way of rebelling against the public’s desire to see Jo and Laurie together, instead, marrying her off to a far less attractive character. This example shows perfectly how multi-layered and complex the tale of “Little Women” truly is once we take into account the author’s life story.

Throughout the entire book, we notice that Alcott takes her time, bringing the reader close to the characters. She crafts the story in a beautiful manner which results in a sense of familiarity and an emotional investment from the part of the reader. This reaches its zenith in Beth’s death scene, an intense episode which is notably based on a real-life experience with the author’s sister, Elizabeth. I can only imagine the impact of this chapter on younger readers, as Beth is an adorable character which we grow very fond of throughout the novel. Alcott manages this scene genially, guiding the readers through it in a sheltering manner, allowing them to peer into Beth’s last moments and to see their pain replicated in the rest of the family’s actions during and after the death. The feeling of proximity to the character and those who cared for her is what makes this scene so brilliant.

However, there is one point in the storyline where it seems that the author almost purposefully rushes a development and risk its realism. After growing up in love with his best friend, being so blinded that he repeatedly asks her for a chance, Laurie only needs a few months to fall out of love with Jo and in love with Amy. Upon Laurie and Amy’s return from Europe, the young man is described as acting towards Jo in a brotherly manner which only adds to the contrast of this transition. Having Alcott loyally accompanying the reader throughout the majority of the story, and then rushing through this change of heart, made it hard for me to take the change seriously.

“Little Women” is dotted with moral and religious lessons, clearly attempting to teach young readers what is proper and what is not. Some critics praise Alcott for building a novel where these lessons are presented by a compassionate mother figure, speaking to young readers as someone on the same level as them rather than talking down to them as most works until then did. While I very much agree with this statement, I must also add that, as someone reading the book 150 years after it was published, I felt some of these lessons are significantly outdated and dare say they may have seemed so to Alcott already at the time. The book’s supporting material allowed me to learn Alcott did indeed fight her publisher on this topic. She won a discussion on whether the characters should go to Sunday school instead of performing plays at their house on a Sunday morning – this was a risky move as Sunday schools seem to have commanded a lot of sales at the time. It’s therefore evident the author’s struggle with the need for tradition and her desire for reform.

The mother figure in “Litte Women”, Marmee, is one of the strong points of the novel. She dances the line between some of the traditional beliefs and her progressive questioning of part of the status quo. Marmee shines in her one on one talks to her girls. I especially appreciated her honest advice to Jo on how to handle a quick temper, exposing her own flaws and challenges she faced. This scene allows us a glimpse at a more complex character than a first glance at Marmee might have shown.

Lastly, when we hear “Little Women” being talked about, there is a tendency for people to identify with one of the four sisters. “I’m a Meg!” “Oh, I’m most definitely an Amy with a little bit of Jo.” I find this oversimplification of the characters slightly problematic. It delineates the tastes, ambitions, and traits of each character and fixes them in place as if almost forever unchangeable. On the other hand, I can recognise that such treatment can be comforting for younger readers, who are often struggling with defining themselves. The use of a widely held idea of a character allows for the creation of a group of people who identify with it. This, in turn, allows each individual to experiment within the group, learn where the similarities and differences lay, and, eventually, learn about themselves.

“Little Women” remains representative of the period it was written in, directly presenting some ideas ahead of its time, and hiding a lot of Alcott’s progressive and rebellious messages between the lines.

Review: The Flame and the Arrow by Emigh Cannaday

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Detailed Rating:

  •  Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Annika Brisby thinks she knows where her life is going until she steps through a broken portal that leaves her stranded in a realm of fairies, vampires, and other mythical beings.

Unable to return until it’s repaired, she’s rescued by wood nymphs who believe her sudden arrival is no accident. After being taken in by a prominent family of elves, Annika finds herself struggling to resist the seductive spell of their youngest son, Talvi. Equal parts arrogant and alluring, the notorious heartbreaker seems like the perfect distraction for her homesickness. But on the journey home she discovers that there’s a mountain of secrets that he’s not telling her, and Annika can’t help wondering who’s really in danger.

Review:

Publisher: Createspace
Date of Publication:  22nd November 2010
Genre: Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Page Count: 438
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: Warrior by Heather Todd

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Detailed Rating:

  •  Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★☆☆
  • Pacing ★★★☆☆
  • Cover ★★★★★

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Mary Houston didn’t expect to come home late at night to see her entire neighborhood in shambles; doors ripped off their hinges, windows smashed, trash on lawns. She’s sure her family has been captured by people who call themselves Warriors, who train humans to become a part of The Platform for World War III.  And she ends up captured herself as well. Now, in order to save herself from losing herself, she must make them believe that she is one of them.

She meets Xavier, who is set to train her one-on-one at The Shelter where she is staying with hundreds of other trainees. Can she survive while hiding her true self behind this mask, risking her entire life in the process? 

Review:

Sooooo, I’ve tried something different this time… Let me know how you feel about it in the comments’ section below! *monkey hiding his face with his hands emoji*

 

Publisher: Createspace
Date of Publication:  9th August 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Page Count: 227
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

Review: Hearing Thoughts by Anthony Diffley

 

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Book Rate: ★★☆☆☆ (2/5)

Review:

I don’t know if it was the official synopsis that got my expectations so high, but the truth is I am really disappointed with Hearing Thoughts.

The first few chapters were fine, the story sounded promising but then, all of a sudden, Danny (the protagonist) started sounding like a child when he interacted with other characters. I gave him the benefit of the doubt in the beginning because the first time it happened he was under the effects of an alien spaceship, but it continued once he got back to Earth and through the rest of the book.

But I think I could’ve dealt with that and still enjoy the book. Until Danny met Alisha… and one week later they were deeply in love and one or two weeks after that planning to move in together and get married and have kinds and grand kids and planning where they will live after they retire. And the fact that we barely get to know them as individuals and even less as a couple just adds to the awkwardness that their relationships transmits to the reader.

Hearing Thoughts could still have been a 3-stars book for me if the story line was gripping and interesting. But it failed greatly there too in my opinion. As we read from the perspective of different characters, the plot barely holds and surprises and twists. We already know who are the traitors and their plans from the start and it’s very clear how the story will develop.

The only thing I mildly appreciated in Anthony Diffley’s book was his writing style and the pacing of the story itself.

To be very honest, this is not a book I recommend.

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★☆☆☆
  • Characters ★☆☆☆☆
  • Writing ★★★☆☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Daniel Burke is a prosecutor in New York City who decided to take a short getaway vacation with two friends to their cabins up in Lake George. All is going well for him and his friends until he is suddenly and discreetly abducted by an alien vessel from outer space.

While on board of the vessel, Danny is given the ability to communicate with the aliens via thought transmission or, in other words, through the ability of hearing their thoughts. Just as they are returning Danny back to earth trouble hits their ship and interrupts the process of removing the thought hearing capability. Danny is safely returned but unintentionally left with the talent to hear other people’s thoughts. When he finally realizes this, he starts to question himself as to how he can put it to good use. Until the CIA contacts him and his life is changed forever.

Publisher: Page Publishing
Date of Publication: March 16th 2015
Genre: Adult, Science Fiction, Policial
Page Count: 208
Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

Review: I Am Sleepless: Sim 299 by Johan Twiss

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Book Rate:
 ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

I would like to start by saying I read this book in 3 days. “And why is this important?” you ask me. Because I’ve been on a reading slump since January (I guess it was my post-“the year is almost ending and I gotta finish my Goodreads Reading Challenge” exhaustion period) and it’s currently the 6th of April and no book had gripped as hard as this one did. So there you go, relevance.

If I had to describe I Am Sleepless without reading the synopsis I would say it is a mix between Ready Player One and The Darkest Minds Trilogy. It’s not as well-explored, not as detailed, not as unforgettable, true. But that may also be because I read those two first so this one didn’t come as much as a surprise to me. Nevertheless, I Am Sleepless managed to grab my attention very efficiently!

Johan Twiss’s characters are quite wonderful, very different and real, but I which I had gotten to know them better. The reader gets to see them all interact as a group a lot but we rarely learn about them as individuals – except for the main character, Aidan.

The story line was very consistent and interesting and then again, I wouldn’t change its structure a single bit, I only add more depth to it. I feel like a lot of the situations presented could’ve been better explored (as in more explored). The fights on the Pit, the Sim 299,  I think they would’ve won a lot if they had been more intense for the reader.

But apart from what I pointed out, I have to say I enjoyed everything else in I Am Sleepless. The book’s structure was charming, full of drawings of this world’s creature and relevant excerpts of old books. I was captured!

So if you’re wondering if I recommend it? Yes I do, specially if you’ve read Ready Player One and The Darkest Minds and you’re craving more of the kind. Personally, I’m really looking forward to the sequel!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★☆☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★★☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

The planet Ethos is at war with an enemy known as the Splicers. Their only successful defense is the Prime Initiative. All newborn babies with the compatible genetic code are taken from their families and injected with the Prime Stimulus. Each child that survives the stimulus develops an extraordinary ability and is conscripted into the military for training.

After turning 12, Aidan is moved to the upper-class at the Mount Fegorio training complex. His special gifts allow him unprecedented success in the virtual training simulations, advancing him further than any prime cadet in history. No one knows what lies after sim 299, not even Director Tuskin, the reclusive ruler of their planet. But something, or someone, has been guiding Aidan there. If he can pass the final tests, he may discover the key to ending the Splicer War.

Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
Date of Publication:  October 28th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Page Count: 286
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: Mean Girls Club by Ryan Heshka

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Book Rate: ★☆☆☆☆ (1/5)

Review:

Reading this book was a very weird experience, I must admit…

The moment I saw the cover and the title I got so excited to read it! I finished it in 10 minutes and my first thoughts were:

  • “Oh.”
  • “Ok…”
  • “There’s barely any plot, like at all…”
  • “And I didn’t even get to really know the characters. Not a single one of them!”
  • “I’m the exact same person I was before I started reading this book. I only lost 10 minutes of my life.”
  • “…”
  • “Or maybe not…”
  • “Let me google the name on the last page…”

And that was when I understood that Mean Girls Club is not one of those books with kickass assassins like Throne of Glass‘s Celaena or an important feminist plot like I was imagining. It is simply a book that like all books is supposed to make you feel something. In this case it is discomfort: these women are unbelievable! They torture, kill, steal, do drugs, DRINK TEARS! It just reminded me of a group of guys from the Mafia or something… And then it hit me. This is the feminine correspondent, something I had never seen portrayed before!

And as good as it felt to understand this book, it still didn’t compensate for the disappointment it was. I think it would have really gained a lot if it had a little more plot and depth… I mean the drawings are great with their vintage side and all. But I really would’ve liked to know this group of girls better…

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★☆☆☆☆
  • Characters ★☆☆☆☆
  • Graphics ★★★☆☆
  • Pacing ★☆☆☆☆
  • Cover ★★★★☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

This bold comic is full of sassy club-singing sisters who you don’t wanna mess with! Introducing: Pinky, Sweets, Blackie, McQualude, and Wanda. Together they form the Mean Girls Club, a menacing powerhouse of ruthless rebels.

Publisher: Nobrow Press
Date of Publication: February 2nd 2016
Genre: Comics
Page Count: 24
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Edelweiss to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: Thicker Than Water by Brigid Kemmerer

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

Thicker Than Water is definitely one of the top ARCs I’ve read this year.

I was hooked right from the first few sentences! The characters sounded interesting, the plot intriguing and the writing captivating. It was the type of book that I chose to read over sleeping.

The suspense grew with every page I turned until I begun reaching the end and the storyline sort of felt like it was quickly wrapping itself up because the book had a maximum limit of pages or something… That disappointed me a bit, I felt like it grew to be so fantastic through the beginning and middle that it’s a shame the quick development of the ending it got…

But besides that, wow, great read! I specially recommend if you liked Gone Girl but are also a fan of paranormal plots.

And I will certainly stay tuned for more from Brigid Kemmerer!

P.S.: Sorry for the short review but this really is the kind of book that should not be spoiled even a tiny bit!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★☆☆
  • Cover ★★★★★

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Thomas Bellweather hasn’t been in town long. Just long enough for his newlywed mother to be murdered, and for his new stepdad’s cop colleagues to decide Thomas is the primary suspect.

The only person who believes him is Charlotte Rooker, little sister to three cops and, with her soft hands and sweet curves, straight-up dangerous to Thomas.

They are looking for answers, answers that could get them both killed, and reveal a truth Thomas would die to keep hidden…

Publisher: Kensington Books
Date of Publication: December 29th 2015
Genre: New Adult, Paranormal, Drama, Thriller
Page Count: 322
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: Why They Run The Way They Do by Susan Perabo

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

Why They Run The Way They Do captured my attetion because of its title and cover. I just had to find out what it was about!

This collection of short stories not only has an interesting aspect but also an interesting content. Susan Perabo’s writting makes you want to find out everything about the story you’re reading right from the first few lines, just like a short story is supposed to! Each of this characters has their own strenght and their situtations often captures your heart right from the beggining.

In Why They Run The Way They Do you can read about characters with very diverse ages and even though I could understand every story’s plot, I do want to come back to this book once I’m older because there where a few (adult) characters I was unable to relate as much as with others. Nevertheless, this was a book that got me thinking a lot since every situtation is so truthfully described and realistic.

All in all, this is quite a worthy read, speacially if you’re into brutally honest daily life stories that will make you think about your own.

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★★☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

“Why They Run The Way They Do” presents the reader with twelve short stories celebrating the everyday truths of people facing unusual or challenging situations…often of their own making. Two young students try their hand at blackmail upon learning an illicit secret; a woman grapples with feelings of betrayal after discovering her spinster sister’s pregnancy test; the ghost of a couple’s past comes back to haunt them in the form of their toddler’s stuffed toy.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Date of Publication: February 16th 2016
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Drama, Short Story
Page Count: 208
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: Smart Girl by Rachel Hollis

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Book Rate:
 ★★★★★ (5/5)

Review:

I cried. I laughed and I cried with this book. Whenever a book makes me do both of those things it automatically becomes a 5 star book.

I had never read a book from Rachel Hollis before but I’m definitely going to check out more works of hers soon.

Starting off as a funny book with awesome and relatable characters, Smart Girl evolves to a strong story about knowing when to hold on and when to let go. This book is like a little thief that grabs your heart and attention without you even noticing it!

The Girls trilogy is a bit like Stephanie Perkins’ Anna and the French Kiss trilogy (which as you know didn’t really fulfill my expectations) so, even though I know some of you might shoot me, I’d just like to say that I found Rachel Hollis’ books to be better than Stephenie Perkins’. This is absolutely just my opinion and it’s super subjective and oh-god-please-don’t-kill-me-guyssssss!

I just thought Miko was so much like Cath in Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl! One of the blurbs of this book should be “It’s as if Rainbow Rowell’s and Stephenie Perkins’ books had a baby.”!

Smart Girl portrays such an important and unique message that we rarely read about in other books. It’s about loving someone, connecting with them but identifying that they don’t love you the same way and they are stealing your energy everytime you try to make it work. They are not interest in you, they are interested in keeping you interested. It’s about knowing when to walk away and breaking your own heart. It’s about putting the pieces toguether and start better, fresher, bigger and more like yourself. Love yourself first.

Just became one of my favourites, no doubt! 100% recommend!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★★
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★★
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Brilliant designer Miko Jin is a hopeless romantic. She’s spent most of her life falling in love over and over again…with the men she finds in the pages of her favorite novels.

When Miko meets Liam Ashton, it’s love at first sight. At least, for her. Sure, the two of them are polar opposites, and yes, he seems to be dating someone new each week. But Miko knows what true love is and that you can’t rush it—after all, what she lacks in real-world experience, she makes up for in book smarts. With novels as her guide, and her best friends by her side, she knows she can get Liam to love her back. But just like any good romance novel, fate has a few plot twists in store.

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Date of Publication:  January 26th 2016
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Page Count: 283
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!