Review | The Boy in the Photo by Nicole Trope

“Divorce is a terrible thing, but sometimes to stay married is even more terrible.” 4/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: missing children, old photographs, new babies, manipulation and a strong maternal bond.

Read the chilling and completely heartwrenching story of a mother’s worst nightmare: her child being stolen—and what happens when he returns.
Six years ago

Megan waits at the school gates for her six-year-old son, Daniel. As the playground empties, panic bubbles inside her. Daniel is nowhere to be found. Her darling son is missing.

Six years later

After years of sleepless nights and endless days of missing her son, Megan finally gets the call she has been dreaming about. Daniel has walked into a police station in a remote town just a few miles away.

Megan is overjoyed—her son is finally coming home. She has kept Daniel’s room, with his Cookie Monster poster on the wall and a stack of Lego under the bed, in perfect shape to welcome him back. But when he returns, there is something different about Daniel…

According to the police, Daniel was kidnapped by his father. After his dad died in a fire, Daniel was finally able to escape. Desperate to find out the truth, Megan tries to talk to her little boy—but he barely answers her questions. Longing to help him heal, Megan tries everything—his favourite chocolate milkshake, a reunion with his best friend, a present for every birthday missed—but still, Daniel is distant.

And as they struggle to connect, Megan begins to suspect that there is more to the story. Soon, she fears that her son is hiding a secret. A secret that could destroy her family…

This book was so crazy!

In this story we follow a family of three: the mother Megan, the father Greg and the 6 year-old son Daniel. Megan was physically and mentally abused for years by her husband, so they got a divorce to live their separate lives. A few months after their separation, Megan goes to pick Daniel from school but soon finds out that Greg picked him up without permission first and they’re gone without a trace. Yes, Greg abducted his son! So for 6 years Daniel was missing… until one day he returned out of nowhere. His mother is thrilled he is back to her, and she tries to reconnect with him and integrate him in her new family. The weird thing is Daniel is not the same… and I’ll leave it at that!

I felt so sorry for the mother! I just can’t imagine what it was like to go through a grief process, wondering where your kid is or even if he is alive. Oh and the guilt she must have felt! And then trying to deal with his behavior after coming back and trying your best to make things work for everyone. Not an easy scenario, but she definitely had my sympathy.

I personally had no idea of what was going to happen by the end of the story, but I was pleased with how it turned out. It was insane, but well done!

This is a disturbing story about the maternal bond, manipulation and toxic parents. It was heartbreaking, but very entertaining. I highly recommend it!

Review | Thornhill by Pam Smy

“All I wanted was a friend.” 5/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: bullies, orphans, The Secret Garden, loneliness, trashed rooms, ruined homework, lost keys, handmade dolls, care givers, beautiful gardens, bacon sandwiches, thumps, a black raven, a single friend and a silent girl.

Parallel plotlines, one told in text and one in art, inform each other as a young girl unravels the mystery of a ghost next door.
Mary is an orphan at the Thornhill Institute for Children at the very moment that it’s closing down for good. But when a bully goes too far, Mary’s revenge will have a lasting effect on the bully, on Mary, and on Thornhill itself.

Years later, Ella moves to a new town where she has a perfect view of the dilapidated, abandoned Thornhill Institute. Determined to befriend the mysterious, evasive girl she sees there, Ella resolves to unravel Thornhill’s history and uncover its secrets.

Ella’s story is told through striking, bold art; Mary’s is told through diary entries. Each informs the other until the two eventually intersect to reveal the truth behind Thornhill’s shadowy past, once and for all. Strikingly told and masterfully illustrated, Pam Smy bends genres and expectations alike.

This was absolutely creepy and sad. And I loved it.

I absolutely loved how this book was presented. It was very different from what I’m used to reading without a doubt. I loved the illustrations (beautiful!), I loved how the story was told in a diary format, I loved the creepiness and gothic nature of it all!

But also, the whole story made me very sad. She was just a normal girl trying to survive there, trying to make friends. She just wanted someone to care, someone to understand her.

I don’t know what I was expecting when I picked this up, since I knew nothing about it. But I’m so glad I did. This was creepy and disturbing and chilling and atmospheric and sad and haunting… in the best way possible. This is a unique book, one I will never forget.

(PS: That last illustration though… chills!)

Wrap-Up | What I Read in August 2022

Hello friends!

Another month, another Wrap Up – you know the drill! As usual, today I’m sharing with you what I have read in the month of August.

And by the way, I’m sorry this Wrap Up is coming a little late. I just had surgery, so I had to take care of some things before it happened and now I’m still taking it easy with my recovery. I haven’t been able to do a lot here on the blog other than posting my usual reviews. But I’m coming back slowly and I’m starting with this overdue Wrap Up! 🙂

August was a great reading month, knowing how low my book count has been in the last few months. I’ve read a grand total of 8 books, which was pretty good! I missed reading this much. Ready to check what I’ve read this past month? Here we go!

  1. I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy: 5/5⭐
  2. How to American by Jimmy O. Yang: 4.25/5
  3. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle: 4/5⭐
  4. Everything is OK by Debbie Tung: 4.25/5⭐
  5. The Blouse by Bastien Vivès: 1/5⭐
  6. The Power is Within You by Louise Hay: 5/5⭐
  7. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Charlie Bucket #1) by Roald Dahl: 5/5⭐
  8. Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator (Charlie Bucket #2) by Roald Dahl: 2.75/5⭐

Interesting list, right? I’ve picked some great non-fiction books that are most of my highest ratings! Jennette McCurdy’s book was incredible and honestly one of the best memoirs I have ever read – if you haven’t read that one, I highly recommend it! Other than the non-fiction books, I have also picked an arc named “The Blouse” (which was terrible, in my humble opinion) and the very well-known duology “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” from Roald Dahl! I loved the first book of the duology, but I didn’t love the second book and I ended up giving it a negative rating! I’ll be posting the reviews for these books soon.

August was a better month than I was expecting! I’m surprised with the amount of books I was able to read knowing I haven’t read that much in the last few months.

Knowing we’re already in the middle of September, I don’t think I’ll be able to read much more this month. As of today, I am currently reading three books… but I don’t think I’ll be picking any more books soon. My focus right now is on my health and well-being, and I don’t feel like reading at the moment. We’ll see how the month goes, but I’m sure I’ll read at least one book in September!

What about you guys? How was your reading month? Let me know in the comments! Thank you for reading friends, I’ll catch you guys later!

Review | The Woman in the White Kimono by Ana Johns

“Worry gives a small thing big shadows.” 5/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: white kimonos, letters, new homes, the military, cemeteries, new friendships, old photos and the massive cultural differences between Americans and the Japanese.

Oceans and decades apart, two women are inextricably bound by the secrets between them.

Japan, 1957. Seventeen-year-old Naoko Nakamura’s prearranged marriage to the son of her father’s business associate would secure her family’s status in their traditional Japanese community, but Naoko has fallen for another man—an American sailor, a gaijin—and to marry him would bring great shame upon her entire family. When it’s learned Naoko carries the sailor’s child, she’s cast out in disgrace and forced to make unimaginable choices with consequences that will ripple across generations.

America, present day. Tori Kovač, caring for her dying father, finds a letter containing a shocking revelation—one that calls into question everything she understood about him, her family and herself. Setting out to learn the truth behind the letter, Tori’s journey leads her halfway around the world to a remote seaside village in Japan, where she must confront the demons of the past to pave a way for redemption.

In breathtaking prose and inspired by true stories from a devastating and little-known era in Japanese and American history, The Woman in the White Kimono illuminates a searing portrait of one woman torn between her culture and her heart, and another woman on a journey to discover the true meaning of home.

This book was absolutely stunning!

Maybe I’m being biased because sometimes it reminded me of my all-time favorite book “Memoirs of a Geisha”, but I couldn’t help falling in love with this story. I admit I didn’t have a lot of expectations when I first picked up this book because I never even heard about it before, but it turned out to be a great book with a great story.

Let’s start with the writing! This book is beautifully written and the reading experience is very immersive. Not only will you feel like you traveled in time, but you also get a good glimpse of what life in Japan was like in 1957. Clearly the author did a lot of research to create an accurate atmosphere, and as a reader I appreciate it a lot. Another thing I thought was cool is that the author used Japanese terms in the book like for example “Okasa” – mother – because it added another layer on creating a good and accurate setting for the story.

I also liked how the author used two different time periods for the story. It worked very well, and by the time these timelines converge the story is blended perfectly and the big revelation is made!

One thing I thought was really interesting was knowing the author based this book on a real story. The inspiration came from someone close to her that lived a similar reality, so she worked on this fictional story for years before publishing it. So kudos to her for creating this work of art based on a true story!

This is so much more than a love story. It’s a story about heartbreak, love and loss. It’s an emotional rollercoaster, but definitely worth the time. Just remember to grab your tissues before picking this one up!

Review | The Puppet Show (Washington Poe #1) by M.W. Craven

This wasn’t about justice, Poe. It was never about justice.” 4.25/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: vengeance, suspensions, bullying, data analysts, burnt men and teamwork.

A serial killer is burning people alive in the Lake District’s prehistoric stone circles. He leaves no clues and the police are helpless.

When his name is found carved into the charred remains of the third victim, disgraced detective Washington Poe is brought back from suspension and into an investigation he wants no part of.

Reluctantly partnered with the brilliant but socially awkward civilian analyst, Tilly Bradshaw, the mismatched pair uncover a trail that only he is meant to see. The elusive killer has a plan and for some reason Poe is part of it.

As the body count rises, Poe discovers he has far more invested in the case than he could have possibly imagined. And in a shocking finale that will shatter everything he’s ever believed about himself, Poe will learn that there are things far worse than being burned alive…

I stopped picking up detective thrillers a while ago because I started losing interest in them. I just don’t have the patience to pick up a super long series following the same detectives solving different cases. It’s just a matter of personal taste!

Now, with that being said, I saw this book and I was immediately intrigued by the title and the synopsis. At the time I didn’t know this was the first book in a series and I only found out about halfway through the book. Still, I read the entire thing and I enjoyed it to the point that I would continue reading this series.

Our main detective in this book is Washington Poe. He returned to work after being suspended for making a mistake during a previous investigation. He is now helping the team identify the “Immolation Man”, who kills his victims by burning them. He soon finds out that there is a connection between him and the killer. With the help of Tilly Bradshaw and Stephanie Flynn, Poe tries to unveil the mystery surrounding the “Immolation Man”!

There are many great things about this book, but what really stood out to me was the writing, the fast pace of the story, the crazy amount of surprises and twists, and of course, the characters! Poe is a great main character. I usually have a hard time connecting to the detectives in these kinds of books, but I had no trouble connecting to him as a character. He is full of wisdom, courage and strength. Another character I loved was Tilly, the data analyst!  She was fantastic and I was so happy Poe and her developed a true friendship. That was an incredible duo!

Just a heads up: if you’re going into this book for the title like I did, you are wasting your time. I was a little disappointed to find out the title has little to do with the content of the book. This story wasn’t what I was expecting, but I still liked it a lot in the end.

I’m impressed. For a detective thriller this was pretty good.

Review | XOXO by Axie Oh

“If cellists have fan clubs, Jenny, I want to join yours.” 4/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: idols, karaoke, single mothers, cello, prestigious music schools, difficult roommates, concerts and sick grandmothers.

Cello prodigy Jenny has one goal: to get into a prestigious music conservatory. When she meets mysterious, handsome Jaewoo in her uncle’s Los Angeles karaoke bar, it’s clear he’s the kind of boy who would uproot her careful plans. But in a moment of spontaneity, she allows him to pull her out of her comfort zone for one unforgettable night of adventure…before he disappears without a word.

Three months later, when Jenny and her mother arrive in South Korea to take care of her ailing grandmother, she’s shocked to discover that Jaewoo is a student at the same elite arts academy where she’s enrolled for the semester. And he’s not just any student. He’s a member of one of the biggest K-pop bands in the world—and he’s strictly forbidden from dating.

When a relationship means throwing Jenny’s life off the path she’s spent years mapping out, she’ll have to decide once and for all just how much she’s willing to risk for love.

This was so cute!

I’m slowly diving into these Kpop books and I’m seriously having the time of my life. This romance story between an average girl and a Kpop idol was the perfect balance of fluff and seriousness. There’s a bit of a forbidden romance going on in this, so things get a little complicated since Jaewoo is famous and can’t start any scandals! Still, I really liked seeing them spend time and get to know each other with time.

I really liked the setting for the story and how they had to cross paths several times since they were both attending the same fancy music school in Seoul. I also liked how the author gave them very different musical skills, since Jenny is an elite cellist and Jaewoo’s classes are more “idol oriented”.

I liked all the characters in this, but I personally think the secondary plot with Jenny’s roommate and the other band member was kind of too much for me. The fact that the roommate had such a remarkable evolution in another character’s book was a little weird and took away the focus from the main characters. I love secondary characters and secondary plots, but this overshadowed the main story.

With that said, I still loved this story! It was a very light and fun read. Now that I’m down this rabbit hole, I want to find more YA K-pop books.

Review | Once and For All by Sarah Dessen

“I put my pen to the paper and began to write. I’d made so many wishes for so many couples quietly in my head as they drove away, but writing the words out made it seem more real, possible. For them, and maybe for me.

FOR YOU, I WISH FOR SECOND CHANCES.

I folded it shut, then put it on the wall before I could change my mind, right above Jilly’s. […] When I looked back at the wish wall from a distance, it was a sea of squares: I couldn’t even find mine among them. So many things we ask for, hope for, prayers put out into a world so wide: there was no way they could all be answered. But you had to keep asking. If you didn’t, nothing even had a chance of coming true.” 4/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: Lexi Navigator ringtones, wedding plans, emotional brides, romantic photoshoots, fresh flowers, dogs in bandanas, school shootings, dealing with grief, beach nights, first love, summer parties, coffee and pie, friendship, centerpieces, amazing families, coffee shops, blowing candles for wishes, the Conga, anagrams, writting novels, alien experts, a phone lady and a lot of dates.

As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen’s thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

I was in the mood to read a nice fluffy cute love story, and my first thought was: Sarah Dessen. I have yet so much to explore from her world, and I thought the synopsis of Once and For All was exactly what I needed. I only read Along for the Ride from her, and I’m so glad I did because… there was a crossover moment from that book! When she talks about the boardwalk of Colby and “Pie and Coffee”, I couldn’t stop smiling! Then Auden and Eli were there eating pie and drinking coffee, and… oh boy, my heart was full!

Since I don’t have a lot of experience with other Sarah Dessen novels, I can’t compare this one to the others. But I thought it was a cute book! Along for the Ride is still my favorite though.

I found it interesting that it all revolved around wedding planners, and I loved to see the “backstage” of the whole wedding process. I also found Ambrose very interesting. It’s not very common (at least for me) to see a love interest so… Well, let’s just say he’s special! It was very refreshing for me!

I also loved her “family” dynamics! I really liked how Louna had her mother and William, and how they were close and interacted like a family. I also felt so bad for what happened to Ethan, and of course, for what Louna was going through. I don’t know why, but it affected me in a way I wasn’t expecting. I really felt her pain.

I think it’s beautifully written and it’s a great book for summer! I really need to read more books from Sarah Dessen.

Recommendations | 5 Graphic Novels I Love!

Hi everyone!

I hope you’re doing well and you’re having a nice day. Today I want to share with you some of my favorite graphic novels of all time. I admit I only pick up graphic novels occasionally, so I’m far from being an expert on the subject. Still, I have read a few that I loved and that’s what I’m bringing you today.

I tried my best to include different styles of art, so you’ll find not only your typical comic book, but I also included a manga I love and a creepier version of a comic. Also, don’t be surprised if you don’t find in this list superhero books – it’s not my cup of tea!

Okay, let’s get into the list already!

1. Thornhill by Pam Smy

“Thornhill” by Pam Smy is a graphic novel on a new level of creepy… and of course, I enjoyed every second of it!

There are so many great things about this book: the artwork is incredible, the story is mysterious and intriguing, the diary format, the creepiness of it all, the gothic elements, the heavy atmosphere… everything! I think this book is very well put together and was very entertaining. 

Definitely worth checking out if you like paranormal, scary books.

Synopsis:

Parallel plotlines, one told in text and one in art, inform each other as a young girl unravels the mystery of a ghost next door.
Mary is an orphan at the Thornhill Institute for Children at the very moment that it’s closing down for good. But when a bully goes too far, Mary’s revenge will have a lasting effect on the bully, on Mary, and on Thornhill itself.

Years later, Ella moves to a new town where she has a perfect view of the dilapidated, abandoned Thornhill Institute. Determined to befriend the mysterious, evasive girl she sees there, Ella resolves to unravel Thornhill’s history and uncover its secrets.

Ella’s story is told through striking, bold art; Mary’s is told through diary entries. Each informs the other until the two eventually intersect to reveal the truth behind Thornhill’s shadowy past, once and for all. Strikingly told and masterfully illustrated, Pam Smy bends genres and expectations alike.

2. Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell

Next on the list we have “Pumpkinheads” by Rainbow Rowell. If you never read this, I’m telling you: you are missing out. I strongly recommend reading this book near the Fall time because the reading experience is magical!

This graphic novel has a very immersive atmosphere, not only for the fun story with a Fall festival, but also with the artwork. The warm Fall colors and art details bring the reading experience to the next level.

It’s a very fun read and like I said, I highly recommend picking this one up when the weather is starting to get cooler!

Synopsis:

Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.

Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.

But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years…

What if their last shift was an adventure?

3. Eat, and Love Yourself by Sweeney Boo

Another great graphic novel that I highly recommend is “Eat, and Love Yourself” by Sweeney Boo. I got this book randomly as an arc from the publisher and I ended up loving it and recommending it to everyone I know!

The story is kind of heartbreaking. In this book we follow our main character Mindy, and we get to see her struggles with body image, depression and eating disorders.

As someone who has struggled with being overweight most of my life, this book touched me. Fortunately I didn’t struggle with eating disorders like the main character does, but I definitely identified myself with Mindy in a lot of ways.

It’s a book with a serious message, so if you are considering picking this up, please keep in mind that there are trigger warnings for eating disorders, body dysmorphia, depression and body shaming.

It may seem like a negative book, but it’s not. It talks a lot about self-acceptance and self-love, so I honestly think this is such an important book for young readers! It is very touching, personal, relatable and will probably make you cry. Definitely worth it!

Synopsis:

A story about Mindy, a woman living with an eating disorder who has to learn how to love herself again.

In pursuit of the perfect body, Mindy buys the low-fat diet products and the glossy magazines which promise the secret to losing weight. One night, while perusing the aisles of the neighborhood convenience store for a midnight snack, she finds a new product. A chocolate bar called “Eat and Love Yourself”. On a whim, Mindy buys the curious candy, not knowing that with every piece of chocolate she eats, she will be brought back to a specific moment of her past — helping her to look at herself honestly, learn to love her body the way it is, and accepting love. Perhaps, she will even realize that her long lost high school best friend, Elliot, was more than just a friend…

4. Card Captor Sakura by CLAMP

From all of the books that I’m sharing today, this one has a very special place in my heart. Not only is it one of my favorite graphic novels of all time, but it’s also one of my favorite book series of all time. I’m talking about the amazing manga series “Card Captor Sakura” by CLAMP. 

I can’t even express how much I love this series. I watched the anime version of Cardcaptor Sakura when I was younger and it easily became my favorite anime of all time. And after rewatching the series on Netflix, I decided to read the manga. Oh, and a fun fact: this was my first time reading manga!

I could ramble forever on why I love this series so much, but in a nutshell: the manga is full of a lot of my favorite tropes. There is a strong female heroine who is just a regular girl just trying to do her best; there is a slow burn cute romance that started from rivalry; there are a lot of references to yummy food and cakes; there are so many real friendships; there are special, inspiring outfits handmade just to catch the cards; the innocence of it all… just everything!

Whether you’re used to reading manga or not, I highly recommend this series. It’s absolute perfection!

Synopsis:

Sakura Kinomoto was just your average 4th grader—loved P.E., hated math. Until… One day, while looking through her father’s library, Sakura found The Clow, an enchanted book designed to hold a set of magical Clow Cards. But when Sakura opened the book, it was empty. Talk about disasters!! Kerberos, the Creature of the Seal, emerged from the cover of the book and told Sakura the cards must be returned to the book. “If the cards aren’t in the book, they come to Life and do evil!” Kero formed a contract with Sakura making her a Cardcaptor. And together with Kero and best friend Tomoyo, Sakura embarked on a mystical journey to capture all the Clow Cards before they wreak chaos and destruction.

5. Heartstopper by Alice Oseman

The next one I want to share with you is the popular series “Heartstopper” by Alice Oseman! Is it really a surprise that this series is here? Absolutely not!

Before picking up the first volume, I saw this series everywhere! And I admit I was a little skeptical to read it because I thought this was probably overhyped on social media. I’m glad to say I was completely wrong!

This is one of the sweetest, cutest romances I have ever read – and that’s saying a lot! Nick and Charlie are adorable and deserve all the hype. Also, the artwork is stunning and complements the story beautifully!

If you pick anything from this list, make it this one! I highly recommend it.

Synopsis:

Charlie, a highly-strung, openly gay over-thinker, and Nick, a cheerful, soft-hearted rugby player, meet at a British all-boys grammar school. Friendship blooms quickly, but could there be something more…?

Charlie Spring is in Year 10 at Truham Grammar School for Boys. The past year hasn’t been too great, but at least he’s not being bullied anymore. Nick Nelson is in Year 11 and on the school rugby team. He’s heard a little about Charlie – the kid who was outed last year and bullied for a few months – but he’s never had the opportunity to talk to him.

They quickly become friends, and soon Charlie is falling hard for Nick, even though he doesn’t think he has a chance. But love works in surprising ways, and sometimes good things are waiting just around the corner…

And there you have it friends, those were five of my favorite graphic novels! I’m still fairly new to the world of graphic novels, so I’m still exploring and finding new books. If you have any recs for me, let me know in the comments – I would appreciate it very much!

Once again, thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next post 🙂

Review | Maybe This Time by Kasie West

“I didn’t even care; he tasted like heaven and I felt like I was floating on air.” 4.25/5 stars!

Attention! This book contains: cherries, barns, a ton of skirts, college applications, football, balloons, corn mazes, fancy food, wedding bouquets, eyeliner, blue eyes, expensive suits, pecan pie, brotherhood, catering, designer sketches, calla lilies, rude chefs and beautiful flower arrangements.

One year. Nine events. Nine chances to . . . fall in love?

Weddings. Funerals. Barbecues. New Year’s Eve parties. Name the occasion, and Sophie Evans will be there. Well, she has to be there. Sophie works for the local florist, so she can be found at every big event in her small hometown, arranging bouquets and managing family dramas.

Enter Andrew Hart. The son of the fancy new chef in town, Andrew is suddenly required to attend all the same events as Sophie. Entitled, arrogant, preppy Andrew. Sophie just wants to get her job done and finish up her sketches so she can apply to design school. But every time she turns around, there is Andrew, getting in her way and making her life more complicated. Until one day she wonders if maybe complicated isn’t so bad after all . . .

Told over the course of one year and following Sophie from event to event, this delightful novel from master of romantic comedy Kasie West shows how love can blossom in unexpected places.

My 10th Kasie West book! I can’t believe I’ve already read 10 books by the ultimate YA queen… that’s insane. I just love how she creates her stories and makes them so light-hearted and fun.

This was still a very different read from Kasie’s regular books since it only took place in specific events over a span of a year. One of my favorite things about this book is the way each event starts. And by this I mean how much I love the way the flowers are highlighted by their descriptions in the beginning.

I also really liked the characters and the hate-to-love romance going on. I just wished this book was released in the spring. This would be perfect for that time of the year!

And even though the book cover is absolutely beautiful, I wish it had something to do with the book itself. The main girl has short hair and doesn’t ride a bike. She has a flower crown, but still, Sophie doesn’t wear flower crowns in the book.

Overall I really enjoyed this book! It’s not my ultimate favorite, but definitely not far from it!

Kasie West is, and forever will be, my YA queen.

Review | Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker

“Money will only make you more of what you already are.” 4/5 stars!

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind reveals the missing link between wanting success and achieving it!

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to get rich easily, while others are destined for a life of financial struggle? Is the difference found in their education, intelligence, skills, timing, work habits, contacts, luck, or their choice of jobs, businesses, or investments?

The shocking answer is: None of the above!

In his groundbreaking Secrets of the Millionaire Mind, T. Harv Eker states: “Give me five minutes, and I can predict your financial future for the rest of your life!” Eker does this by identifying your “money and success blueprint.” We all have a personal money blueprint ingrained in our subconscious minds, and it is this blueprint, more than anything, that will determine our financial lives. You can know everything about marketing, sales, negotiations, stocks, real estate, and the world of finance, but if your money blueprint is not set for a high level of success, you will never have a lot of money—and if somehow you do, you will most likely lose it! The good news is that now you can actually reset your money blueprint to create natural and automatic success.

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind is two books in one. Part I explains how your money blueprint works. Through Eker’s rare combination of street smarts, humor, and heart, you will learn how your childhood influences have shaped your financial destiny. You will also learn how to identify your own money blueprint and “revise” it to not only create success but, more important, to keep and continually grow it.

In Part II you will be introduced to seventeen “Wealth Files,” which describe exactly how rich people think and act differently than most poor and middle-class people. Each Wealth File includes action steps for you to practice in the real world in order to dramatically increase your income and accumulate wealth.

If you are not doing as well financially as you would like, you will have to change your money blueprint. Unfortunately your current money blueprint will tend to stay with you for the rest of your life, unless you identify and revise it, and that’s exactly what you will do with the help of this extraordinary book. According to T. Harv Eker, it’s simple. If you think like rich people think and do what rich people do, chances are you’ll get rich too!

This book was great! I feel like it has a very strong influence from “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”, but it still had the author’s touch, which made it unique.

The money blueprint was one of the most important things I took from this book. If you don’t set your mind for success, it is most likely you will fail and you will never be happy no matter how much money you make. First you need to fix the invisible and then deal with the visible!

Even though this is a book about money, you can definitely apply this book to other areas of your life, because the mindset is what really is important. It’s all about having the right attitude in life!

There are so many great quotes I took from this book that I had a hard time deciding which one I was going to use as a main quote for the review. So here are some of my favorites that I still wanted to include here.

“Your life is not just about you. It’s also about contributing to others. It’s about living true to your mission and reason for being here on this earth at this time. It’s about adding your piece of the puzzle to the world. Most people are so stuck to their egos that everything revolves around me, me, and more me. But if you want to be rich in the truest sense of the word, it can’t only be about you. It has to include adding value to other people’s lives.”

“If you want to fly with the eagles, don’t swim with the ducks!”

“It’s not enough to be in the right place at the right time. You have to be the right person in the right place at the right time.”

“If you shoot for the stars, you’ll at least hit the moon”

“What you focus on expands.”

“Nothing has meaning except for the meaning you give it.”

“Keep your eye on the goal, keep moving toward your target.”

“If you want to change the fruits, you will first have to change the roots. If you want to change the visible, you must first change the invisible.”

“The number one reason most people don’t get what they want is that they don’t know what they want.”

Pretty cool quotes, huh? 

And just as a side note: I also liked when the author asks the readers to touch their heads and say “I have a millionaire mind”. I see why people think it’s corny, but I understand the purpose of connecting the feeling to the thought.

I liked this a lot! It was a quick, informative read that I would recommend to anyone who wants to have a millionaire mind!