Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018.
It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.
This weeks topic is Our First Ten Books We Reviewed (These do not have to be formal reviews. A small sentence on a retailer site or Goodreads counts, too)
1 A Walk to Remember
by Nicholas Sparks
I have a LOT of apparently un-dated reads on goodreads – so I will have to sort through the duplicates I have and find out why. This was the first I found with an actual review to it!
First Goodreads review: December 2010
I think that Nicholas Sparks books get turned into amazing films, the books lack a lot of the magic given to the films, unfortunately. This is extra weird because I believe he has a lot of input into the films!
I was not a fan of this book.
This book has great reviews and I loved the film so I thought I’d try the book. It was dissapointing. Not only did it not deliver on the promise to make me laugh then cry it seemed rather wishy washy. If I hadnt seen and love the film I might have thought worse of it.
It was written from Landons point of view and I feel third person would have improved it…
I really wanted to like it too ) :
by Becca Fitzpatrick
Second Goodreads review: January 2011
Incidentally, I don’t believe I ever went back and found out what happened…
I kinda jump read this book. After several chapters of wondering when something was going to happen I decided to find out. Except that it didnt happen for most of the book and then I discovered a clifhanger ending so I decided to wait till the last book was out to re read it properly….
3 Harvest Moon
by Mercedes Lackey, Michelle Sagara West, Cameron Haley
Third Goodreads Review: February 2011
I don’t remember this at all. I really need to re-read Michelle’s series – I’ve been trying to collect the books, but there are quite a few now. I remember the story being quite confusing and complex so maybe I’ll get on with it better now. I still really want to know what was going on!
I’m not actually sure I ever read The Sleeping Beauty…I mean, I have it…and the one after it…Maybe another series I need to catch up on!
I read this book for the story by Michelle Sagara because I’ve read her entire series so far. It was a good little back story, detailing how the main characters met.
I’ve read many books by Mercedes Lackey and sometimes it takes a while to get into what she writes befause I feel she sometimes spends too long setting a scene. Maybe part of that this time was because, as I found at the end, this is set AFTER The Sleeping Beauty, which isnt due out in the uk for a few more months. I might try re reading it after I’ve read The Sleeping Beauty and like it more, but I cant promise.
The story by Cameron Haley was interesting. I’ve never read anything by them before and I’m not sure I will set out to do so now, but maybe curiosity will get the better of me one day.
4 Ten Tiny Breaths
First Paein and Ms4Tune Review: October 2013
Gosh, I wrote a lot!
Title: Ten Tiny Breaths
Genre: Young adult/New Adult
Found: Perhaps on goodreads
Rating: 3.5 Voodoos
Book 1 of the Ten Tiny Breaths series.
Kasey runs to Miami with her 15 year old sister in tow to escape their life there. Alone in the world Kasey is determined to give her sister the life she deserves. But surviving the car crash that killed her parents, boyfriend and best friend has left Kasey more than a little broken. She’s trying to hold it together, but it’s fraying at the seams. That is until one of their neighbours offers to get Kasey a job where she works and their other neighbour can’t seem to keep his eyes off her.
Kasey intends to keep the past buried deep and to keep moving forwards, but some things can’t be hidden and she’s not the only one with a massive secret…
I quite enjoyed this book. More for what the story could be than for what it was, as there were some points I feel should have been given more consideration.
I enjoy books for the storyline and if it’s good enough the writing won’t bother me particularly much. Unless it’s a second reading or there’s a sequel. However, every now and then I’ll be shaken out of my blissful stupor as something nabs me (for example, in the uk the age for drinking alcohol is 18. You cannot sell alcohol until you’re 18. Yet, Kasey in America, is selling alcohol at 20. Is the liquor age different in Miami? Or can you sell it before you can drink it?)
Often I delude myself into thinking a book is better than it was and often the reviews others leave cause me to go back and reassess my assessment. I feel this is a book that will be picked apart by critics and this is what I hate most about reviews; it needs to be done and I hate doing it. BUT, this is why I’m here, so without further ado, here we go…
Firstly we’re in Kaseys head here, so I’m assuming that’s why the story is dominated by her, but the fact that she was in a car accident and lost not only her parents, but her boyfriend and best friend two is a little over the top. Especially as her sister was meant to be in the car too. Uh, where?
So she has a hard time of it until her sister begs her to stop, where by she becomes all straightish and narrowish and moves her sister away from their creepy uncle. They move in next to a hunk and a babe. The babe becomes their best friend and the hunk is, of course, interested in Kasey.
Perhaps Karma’s apologising, because after their terrible luck so far, they have a pretty decent run of the good stuff.
Kasey finally stops trying to push Trent away and things settle down for a while. Until, of course, Trent’s skeletons come out of the cupboard and throw everything in uproar. Will they ever reconcile?
If it wasn’t for the subject matter I’d think that perhaps it was aimed at a younger audience. Probably, they weren’t in mind when it was written, but I’d recommend this story to an older person who is not as confident a reader as your average Tom, Jack or Alex. ( :
But, it’s a book and while it didn’t strike as true, it was somewhat adorable. And of course, there’s the matter of her sister…
5 Two Boys Kissing
by David Levithan
Second Paein and Ms4Tune Review: October 2013
Wow, look what I wrote!
It’s quite powerful, I’m impressed! I need to learn to write like that again.
I think I liked the idea behind this book more than the book itself. I don’t have it anymore.
Title: Two Boys Kissing
Author: David Levithan
Book: Stand Alone
Genre: Young adult/New Adult
Rating: 4 Voodoos
Harry and Craig are two 17-year-olds who are about to take part in a 32-hour marathon of kissing to set a new World Record. They aren’t dating but they used to.
Neil and Peter have been together for a year or so, but their relationship is still quite new.
Avery and Ryan meet at gay prom and Cooper doesn’t feel anything any more.
I’m not sure what I was expecting, but this wasn’t it. This is not a story about two boys kissing to beat a record. This is a book which is “narrated by a Greek Chorus of the generation of gay men lost to AIDS” as they witness what goes on in these 7 boys lives. If you’re after a sweet novel about two young men written much like most teen books are these days, this is not what you’re after. It’s a book that gives you glimpses into the lives of each of these boys in a roughly 72 hour period. You never learn much about each boy, just enough for you to hope and dream for them. Truly it’s about those that died and the wonder they must hold for how far we’ve come, fear for how far we have yet to go and the sadness they surely feel for not being a part of it.
It’s a book about potential. A book to remind the lost that they are not alone, they should not be alone and if they are it is through no fault of their own. This will remain on my shelves even if I never read it again. It needs to be there.
6 The Language of Flowers
by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
First Ever Goodreads Review: March 2012
A very short review. Actually more like a collection of thoughts than an actual review.
I loved the idea behind this book. The thought that each flower has its own meaning, and put together correctly a bouquet can tell a story, is beautiful. I found the main character, Victoria, quite hard to connect with sometimes but not because of the authors writing, just the way the character is. I am lucky in the fact that I am surrounded by people who love me and so its hard to image how I would be if I had never had anyone care about me. But i can understand that perhaps, faced with the situations Victoria finds herself in, it could result in selfish and destructive behavior. Overall the book was well written and was a good read.
7 One Day
by David Nicholls
Second Goodreads Review: March 2012
Back in a time when I didn’t know how to hyper-link so I literally don’t know who Ashleigh Brown is anymore but it still sums up the book pretty well.
I don’t really know how to review this book. All I know is that it doesn’t matter what others say about this book, if a book makes me laugh, feel really angry and cry it must be good! Its not like any other love story I’ve ever read before. I must say it did way heavy on my heart for a few days after, its so moving.I think Ashleigh Brown’s comment sums it up so well, its all that needs to be said “…the sheer shock of the ending was what made this wonderful I think. Everything doesn’t always end happily. I liked the bravery of going to a different place with this book/film”
8 The Hunger Games
by Suzanne Collins
Reviewed: March 2012
I bought this after seeing the trailer for the film, I had previously seen the book but never considered it as I heard it was similar to Battle Royale.
I’m glad I read it before the film as I liked the characterization of Katniss and Peeta and always find films lack the subtle touches a book has. I thought the twists and turns of the plot were a little obvious but they were written well and had the ability to make me really care what happened to Katniss and Peeta.
I read one review that criticized Suzanne Collins lack of description. I don’t know whether the lack of description was intentional or not but it gave me two impressions, one that Suzanne Collins was allowing the reader free rein to imagine things their own way, (which I kinda liked)and two, that the lack of indepth description reflected Katniss. A girl who has had no real childhood wouldn’t have a great imagination and so her thoughts would be very frank.
I loved this book.
by Cecilia Roberts
First Ever Blog Review: October 2013
We hadn’t quite decided on a format for our reviews at this point but it didn’t take long.
Homecoming isn’t a full length novel, only a novella, and is a prequel to a new paranormal romance series Cloaked Devices. It came with a mature content warning so with this in mind I expected a short, sweet and VERY sexy short story.
‘Sera Czedar is a 23 year old runaway Panther Shifter. She abandoned her mate 5 years ago in the middle of their mating ceremony. She has built a new life for herself in Varselles, the city of Outcasts. But her Mate Levian Grayson has been looking for his missing Bride and he’s so close to finding her hiding place. Will he be able to persuade Sera back to his side and into his bed or will the real reasons Sera left come out and ruin any chance the couple have of a reunion?’
Bring on the sexual tension!!! Doesn’t this sound like the best basis for a steamy romance? I thought YES GREAT… but I found myself afterwards feeling a little disappointed. Not that this was a bad novella! I must make that clear…it just wasn’t what I expected. Let me try to explain…. I thought I was going to get a steamy, not too much thinking, sex filled novella, but this had so much more intricacy! Cecilia Roberts creates a dystopian/paranormal world hybrid for her story to take place in. The idea being that the world we live in now gets torn apart by a plague that annihilates most of the human population, the only cure was to combine human blood with Shifter blood. Creating Human hybrids that can control the elements. Shifters however control the world and this story follows the romance between two Panther Shifters. There is A LOT more background information, and it is interesting don’t worry, I just don’t want to spoil it for you by telling you all about it when you could just read it yourself. I guess I just didn’t expect sooo much from such a short story!
Anyway, Homecoming leads the way into what I hope is a very promising new paranormal series. My rating however had to mirror my slight disappointment at not having as much raunchiness as I would have hoped…(there is some – but not a lot) and also because, while it was packed full of interesting world building, there wasn’t that much in the way of storyline progression. But I will be looking out for the first book in the series to see what happens next…
10 Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist
by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn
Blog Review: October 2013
Hey it really didn’t take that long to develop our format.
“When is a night over? Is it the start of sunrise or the end of it? Is it when you finally go to sleep or simply when you realize that you have to? When the club closes or when everyone leaves?” p.170
Isn’t it strange to find other people have pondered the same silly little things of life that you have?
Title: Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist
Author: David Levithan and Rachel Cohn
Genre: Young adult/New Adult
Found: Paein’s bookshelf
Rating: 5 Voodoos
There were so many little things in this beautiful book that reminded me of times during my college and uni years. I think it is such a special moment when you read a line in a book, written by a complete stranger, at a completely different moment in time and yet you feel a connection.
One of my favourites was this:
“I think Tris will like this band, and the fact I know this stabs me again, because all the knowledge of what she likes is perfectly useless now.” p.5
I think this was so beautifully put… I don’t think there are many people that won’t understand this statement because if you have experienced any kind of lose you have at some point realised this exact fact. THAT knowledge is now completely redundant.
I loved so much of this novel. It’s short but so well put together. Each chapter is the alternate Point of View (POV) so you see each situation from both Nick and Norah’s POV, and it works really well. I think Rachel Cohn (Norah’s chapters) and David Levithan’s (Nick’s chapters) writing styles complement each other well and help with clearly separating the voices of the two characters. I have read a few books that use this technique and I don’t think any of them did this as well and many left me confused or irritated and having to flick back to the beginning of the chapter to find out whom the chapter was about. I wish I had read this back when I was a teen, feeling dejected and anxious that I would never get over my ex or meet another guy… because this book shows hope. Hope in the fact that there are other people and it only takes a moment to change everything. I know this now but I may have found comfort from these pages…
This was such a light and beautiful story, yes it is told in that annoying teenage continuous drama, self-absorbed, angsty voices, as other reviews have pointed out but I think it helps make the characters more believable and true to the characters age range. And if anything it gives the humour that lovely sarcastic edge.