Book Review + Giveaway: Secrets of Southern Girls by Haley Harrigan

9781492647553-PRTitle: Secrets of Southern Girls

Author: Haley Harrigan

Genre: Mystery, Fiction, Contemporary

Page Number (Paperback): 320

Date Published: June 6th of 2017

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark

Synopsis:

In this powerful, affecting debut, a young woman uncovers devastating secrets about the friend she thinks she killed

Ten years ago, Julie Portland accidentally killed her best friend, Reba. What’s worse is she got away with it. Consumed by guilt, she left the small town of Lawrence Mill, Mississippi, and swore nothing would ever drag her back. Now, raising her daughter and struggling to make ends meet in Manhattan, Julie still can’t forget the ghost of a girl with golden hair and a dangerous secret.

When August, Reba’s first love, begs Julie to come home to find the diary that Reba kept all those years ago, Julie’s past comes creeping back to haunt her. That diary could expose the shameful memories Julie has been running from, but it could also unearth the hidden truths that Reba left buried…and reveal that Julie isn’t the only one who feels responsible for Reba’s death.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3 of 5)

I want to thank the publisher for making it possible for me to have an access to the book in exchange for an honest review, via Netgalley. Additionally, this giveaway is in partnership with the publisher, Sourcebooks Landmark. 🙂

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I would keep this review short and to the point. But first, look at that cover and tell me you agree with me–it’s gorgeous! I feel like it ultimately packages the story of the book very well. I got an e-copy of this book through Netgalley and I remember requesting it because of the beautiful cover (it was a different cover). But might I just say, the cover improvement is stellar.

Continue reading “Book Review + Giveaway: Secrets of Southern Girls by Haley Harrigan”

Book Review: Three Dark Crowns (Three Dark Crowns #1) by Kendare Blake

28374007Title: Three Dark Crowns

Author: Kendare Blake

Series: Three Dark Crowns#1

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Fiction

Number of Pages (Hardcover): 398

Date Published: September 20th of 2016

Publisher: HarperTeen

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

When kingdom come, there will be one.

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born—three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown.

Rating: ★★★★★ (5 of 5)

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Three Black Witches are born in a glen,
Sweet little triplets
Will never be friends.
Three Black Witches, all fair to be seen.
Two to devour,
And one to be queen.

I have heard a lot about Three Dark Crowns from almost everyone I follow on Goodreads and on Booktube–most of which are good things. So, with all that hype I was a little daunted to read this. The typical questions such as: What if I don’t like it? What if I hate the characters? What if I end up not liking Kendare Blake’s future books anymore? started to go after me. But, alas, Kendare didn’t fail me again. Her writing is still beautiful, better actually in my opinion! Plus, that cover spoke to me on a level I cannot even begin to explain to you.

Continue reading “Book Review: Three Dark Crowns (Three Dark Crowns #1) by Kendare Blake”

Book Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

23403402Title: A Darker Shade of Magic

Author: V.E. Schwab

Series: Shades of Magic, #1

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Fiction

Page Number: 400

Date Published: February 27th of 2015

Publisher: Titan Books

Synopsis (through Goodreads):

Kell is one of the last travelers–magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel universes connected by one magical city.

There’s Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, and with one mad King–George III. Red London, where life and magic are revered–and where Kell was raised alongside Rhy Maresh, the roguish heir to a flourishing empire. White London–a place where people fight to control magic and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. And once upon a time, there was Black London. But no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red traveler, ambassador of the Maresh empire, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 of 5)

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I’d rather die on an adventure than live standing still.

Back in the old days of yore—2015 to be exact—I gave up on this book after several chapters in. Whether it was the sheer fact that I was under so much pressure in college or just that I didn’t really like the premise of the book, I may never know. I’ll leave that aspect to the past. But no kidding, dramatics aside, really I just forgot why I DNF-ed this this when it first came out because it is so good! (And yes, I’m totally beating myself up for doing that! 😣)

Continue reading “Book Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab”

Life on the Refrigerator Door by Alice Kuipers

256003Title: Life on the Refrigerator Door

Author: Alice Kuipers

Series: None

Genre: Women’s Literature, Fiction, Contemporary

Number of Pages (Hardcover): 220

Date Published: August 28th of 2007

Publisher: Harper

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

Claire and her mother are running out of time, but they don’t know it. Not yet. Claire is wrapped up with the difficulties of her bourgeoning adulthood—boys, school, friends, identity; Claire’s mother, a single mom, is rushed off her feet both at work and at home. They rarely find themselves in the same room at the same time, and it often seems that the only thing they can count on are notes to each other on the refrigerator door. When home is threatened by a crisis, their relationship experiences a momentous change. Forced to reevaluate the delicate balance between their personal lives and their bond as mother and daughter, Claire and her mother find new love and devotion for one another deeper than anything they had ever imagined.

Heartfelt, touching, and unforgettable, Life on the Refrigerator Door is a glimpse into the lives of mothers and daughters everywhere. In this deeply touching novel told through a series of notes written from a loving mother and her devoted fifteen-year-old daughter, debut author Alice Kuipers deftly captures the impenetrable fabric that connects mothers and daughters throughout the world. Moving and rich with emotion, Life on the Refrigerator Door delivers universal lessons about love in a wonderfully simple and poignant narrative.

Rate: 3.5 of 5

Get a copy: Book Depository (PaperbackWordery (Paperback)



‘I think I’ll leave this letter for you here. In this empty kitchen. So you’ll know if you come home that I love you and I miss you. Please don’t worry about me.
Your daughter,
Claire

The presentation of this book is really unique because it is presented in notes left on the fridge door. It was such a fast read since I finished it in practically one sitting. This was a very random read since I wasn’t able to find the book I was opting to read, and I saw this instead.

My heart hurts. This was one of my impulse reads and I didn’t anticipate it would have such an impact on me. It is very inspirational and heartfelt, especially the parts approaching the end.  This book is deeply moving that it just seemed so real. I liked how the author let the reader decide what was really happening in the background instead of spoon-feeding us with a to-the-point scenario. However, I love-hated how there’s this air of impending doom, but then again, the said attribute really makes for a great book.

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One qualm I have is that I feel like the pain of having a cancer patient in the family wasn’t showcased thoroughly. Instead of talking about the disease, the events around it were tackled which is, I suppose, in some way correctly portrayed the thematic intent of the book since it is just made up of notes. Personally, I’ve had numerous loved ones who had gone through this path (my grandpa died of cancer, as well.) and I wished the story was more well-developed rather than the manner that this book has gone through–too many things happening in the ends and too fast.

While the story is deeply moving, and really cry-worthy, I didn’t see the merit of making it a 4 of 5 rating. So, I’m going to settle with a 3.5 rating because  cannot say that I loved it straight-away. BUT, I see the moral and  the efforts of the story-telling. Now, excuse me. I’m going to go cry again read a new book.  

‘The worst part about coming here was that I looked on the fridge door for a note from you, and there wasn’t one. The door was white and empty. I cried for ages.’
Do I recommend it? Yes. 🙂
Be my friend on Goodreads!


Cover image and Synopsis via Goodreads; Gif via Giphy.

Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3) by Sarah J. Maas

GENERAL INFO

20613470Title: Heir of Fire

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: Throne of Glass (no. 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Fiction

Number of Pages (Hardcover): 565

Date Published: September 2nd of 2014

Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Synopsis (via Goodreads): 

Celaena has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak―but at an unspeakable cost. Now, she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth . . . a truth about her heritage that could change her life―and her future―forever. Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. Will Celaena find the strength to not only fight her inner demons, but to take on the evil that is about to be unleashed?

The bestselling series that has captured readers all over the world reaches new heights in this sequel to the New York Times best-selling Crown of Midnight. Packed with heart-pounding action, fierce new characters, and swoon-worthy romance, this third book will enthrall readers from start to finish.

Rate: 4 of 5

Get a copy: Book Depository (Hardcover, Paperback, CD-Audio)



REVIEW (NO SPOILERS)
“You didn’t need a weapon at all when you were born one.”

It would be an extreme understatement if I said that I was excited to wrap my hands around this book because I’m really loving this series and it’s been hard for me to just keep myself in check regarding my pacing. Soon enough I’ll be left with no more Sarah J. Maas books to read and what will my life be then? 😛 Let 2017 be known as the year Sarah J. Maas completely destroyed my heart and my bookshelf, from A Court of Mist and Fury and now with this series.

Needless to say, this is not my first Maas book. I’m still surprised as to how she continues to outdo herself. She’s becoming more excellent as time goes by and it’s really, really wonderful. The type of writing has long since developed and I’m quite confident that she’ll get better in the other books–I have heard positive (stellar, actually) reviews of the later books in this series. I love how the story flows and weaves and develops–just look behind Throne of Glass and you’ll understand. Also, I didn’t really want to take notes because I just wanted to read and read and read it.

As much as I love reading long books, I had been somewhat disappointed with this one because it just seemed so dragging and even lulling that sometimes I’m kinda confused as to what is happening. It’s long, I’ll tell you that. (That’s what she said.)  I’ve deemed this book as having a pace slower than all the previous books I have read of the author because even though all of her books are really hefty in size, I don’t really have a problem with the pacing except for the first parts of The Assassin’s Blade, and it kinda saddens me BUT THEN it really picks up in the middle parts because that is where all the magic will happen. OH YASSS.

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I might as well say it outright, this is the ultimate in-between book, a filler book. You can just feel the new world-building efforts of the author, especially because we find Celaena in a whole new land which is in Wendlyn. So naturally, a whole new environment is painted–AND A WHOLE LOT NEW CHARACTERS! What can also be found here is Aelin’s redemption and her kick-ass emergence. It’s beautiful. It was really nice to see the characters individually, separated from each other since that gave them a whole new depth to their distinguishing qualities. I loved the round-robin (is that what it’s called? Forgive me, I’m not really sure) style of the chapters between the different characters.

Overall, I liked the direction this series is going to. Sure, I have some qualms. And sure, I would have kindly requested that Sarah J. Maas stops breaking my heart every goddamn time. But, you know, I can live with it. Haha. This book had me hitching my breath because practically every chapter is a cliff hanger.

Chaol still has my heart, by the way. And that heart is bleeding right now to the core. This has been really emotionally tolling so prepare your heart, will ya? TBH, I feel like it’s an unspoken rule to just ready your emotions when picking up a Maas book, so yeah.

Day 3543: I still don’t know how to pronounce their names and I refuse to learn. I still pronounce Chaol as “Chowl”. Shut up. It’s good.

I am so excited to get my hands on the next one. I, actually, am currently just finished reading the next book, Queen of Shadows, and damnnnn it’s going down!

So there ends my spoiler-free part of the book and I hope if you haven’t read this that you go ahead and pick it up because SJM will not fail you. What follows here are my thoughts on the different parts of the book so if you don’t want to be spoiled, tread lightly or go read the book and come back!


THOUGHTS (CHOCK FULL OF SPOILERS!)

*Celaena or Aelin? I don’t even know anymore. She’s like a whole new character with all these skedaddling of uncovering her past. It’s just great!

*ROWAN WHITEHORN. Oh gosh. Need I say more? I’m hardcore Chaol but I’d gladly have this  as a back-up ship if my ship decided to just go Titanic on me. Never let go, Chaol. 

*Speaking of which, I’m still waiting for the hopeless love of Chaol’s and Celaena’s. 😦 Huhuhu. Still hoping for my ship to happen but I just, I don’t see it anymore. Like, it’s slowly fading into the horizon seemingly never to come back. Why must you do this to my heart?

*Dorian and Sorscha–GOD. I don’t like her for him. He’s alright, I guess. But I don’t like her. I didn’t really love her even though she made Dorian happy because her character’s premise is just a little too preposterous for me. What are the chances that the crown prince will fall in love with you? I know, next to nothing right? So, IDK, I’m just not too keen on a love that happens too fast and too hard and that’s precisely what theirs is.

*Dorian has a collar?! Like a dog? He doesn’t get a ring, he gets a COLLAR. Good job, Father King!

*Actually, somoehow, I kinda am already going in the direction of knowing that Sorscha is gonna die because let’s face it, her character doesn’t have much use and also, she be sketchy doe.

*Manon! The new kick-ass character! I like her and I am curious about her, I mean, obviously she’s a key character here because she has her own chapter (look at me being all detective on this book series ahahahhaha very witty lol) but she’s a witch rethinking her nature–a what?! I THINK SHE’S GOING DOWN AS A GOOD WITCH OMG.

*Manon’s story sort of gives the storyline a new reach/span and promises a whole new shitstorm that’s going down in the future.

*As if this series can’t get any more kickass, we get wyverns in the book. Which are essentially dragons with a fancy new name. WHAT DO YOU HAVE NOW.

*And hold up, it doesn’t end there! WITCHES. ON DRAGONS. WITCHES ON DRAGONS!!! Witches+Dragons=EPIC FIRE EVERYWHERE SERIES. Lol literally fire.

*I was laughing so hard in that part where Abraxos loves flowers. How cute! And weird. And cute! AHHH cuuuuute.

*I still don’t like Aedion. :/ He’s kinda intense. And what he’s a contender to be the king of Terassen? LOL NO.

*I am really irked as to how Chaol is so honorable still–like buddy we get it. You’re noble and all that shit, but duuuuuuuude.

*As much as my heart belongs to Chaol still, I would be lying if I said that I’m not seeing some glimpse of Celaena/Aelin (honestly, what do I call her now? She has so many names: Celaena Sardothien, Lillian Gordiana, Elentiya, Aelin Ashryver Galathynius, Fireheart…TELL ME WHAT YOUR NAME IS GODDAMNIT AND STICK TO ONE WILL YA) and Rowan happening. My God girl, ang ganda mo.

*Celaena is “done” with Chaol? She removed the ring? NOOOOOOOO.

*Rowan’s mate. 😦

*Celaena and Rowan feels like the start of a friendship that’s so epic–and maybe something more? I loved the scene after Aelin was all burnt out (like literally in her case lol) and Rowan was fussing over her AHHHHHHHHHH.

“Air to help the fire…”

*ARE THEY MEANT TO BE OR WHAT?!

*Celaena being the OMG bitchy boss-ass bitch on her Aunt Maeve? I mean, you go girl.

*Chaol saying “I love you” to Dorian is really #friendshipgoals.

*Chaol is the ultimate martyr. To hell with that honor, wow boy.

*The Wyrdkey is in Arobynn’s possession?! AHHHH. Payback time, sir.

“You’re staying with me from now on.”

*OMG KILIIIIIIIIIG.

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*To end this book talk:

“She grinned at Rowan through her tears, and sent the droplet splashing onto his face.
Rowan tossed her into the pool. A moment later, laughing, he jumped in himself.”

*My heart is just so warm about this scene and I’m living for it. This gave me the Feylin vibes (forgive me) and I am really so confused as what ship I am now on.

Do I recommend it? Oh, of course!


*Cover image and Synopsis via Goodreads; Gifs via Giphy.

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The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

7718597Title: The Graveyard Book

Author: Neil Gaiman

Illustrator: Dave McKean

Genre: Children’s, Fantasy, Fiction

Series: none

Awards: Newbery Medal, Hugo Award for Best Novel, etc.

Date Published: September 28th of 2010 (first published on the 30th of September, year 2008)

Publisher: HarperCollins

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

IT TAKES A GRAVEYARD TO RAISE A CHILD.

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy – an ancient indigo man, a gateway to abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible fleer. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will be in danger from the man Jack – who has already killed Bod’s family . . .

Rate: 5 of 5

Get a copy: Book Depository (Hardcover, Paperback, CD-Audio) National Bookstore (Paperback), Kobo (eBook), Audible (Audio book)


As you may well know (I’m totally assuming on this but whatever), I reserve my five-of-five ratings for those types of books that really blew my mind. It may not be a certain simple work of literature or a complex one or a swoon-worthy one, but rest-assured I’ll be giving five-of-five for those books that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed. These are the types of books that I had the delight of reading with all my heart and that maybe something that people should take a chance on. I mean, if we have the same tastes. Suffice to say, I rated this book a whooping five-of-five so you may have a hint now of how nice of a book this is.

This is the first Gaiman book that I actually completed. I tried to read Coraline and Neverwhere before but I didn’t finish them. The first work of Gaiman that I have picked up was Neverwhere, I think I got as far as a third of the book. That was the era when I was just not into fantasy, I wasn’t really into very complex characters and plot lines that time I guess–I was perhaps fifteen, sixteen (?) and was loving chick lit back then haha. I borrowed it from my cousin and she said that it is very good. So now, I’m a little guilty for not reading it to the end. Haha. The second Gaiman book I tried reading just in the latter parts of 2016 was Coraline. It was actually in my Goodreads TBR list but I ended up removing it because uhm I really don’t know. I’m not really sure why because I’m particulary fond of Children’s books but ugh IRDK. I had mini reading slumps sprinkled all throughout 2016 so maybe the book just took the runt of that slump.

I think the reason why I really liked this book was that there is a different allure to the notion of this book: a child–very much alive–growing up with ghosts and the like. There’s a certain appeal and contrast to the notion that is the living trying to breach the divide that is death. (Does that make sense? haha) There’s a nice contrast to it because a child living with people that are dead. (I just made the ghosts sound like zombies lol) It’s extraordinary how this is often flagged as a children’s book but opens with a rather bloody murder scene and then later on morphs into the setting of the graveyard. I loved the air of mystery.

Okay, characters. Let’s start with Nobody Owens. I’m gonna put it out there: WHO NAMES THEIR KID NOBODY?! Like nobody does that. (Wink, wink. I know excellent pun right. Right?! Say yes.) It is a witty name and really kick-ass name but wow parents please don’t name your child that please. LOL, kidding. I loved his character because he is just so innocent and cute, which is really not something that you would expect from a boy that was raised up from a grim place such as the graveyard. Again, the contrast of his character to the setting is quite extraordinary. Second, Silas. What is up with him? Mr. and Mrs. Owens, there wasn’t really much time for me to love their characters because they weren’t really thereMs. Lupescu, on the other hand, is a character that I actually liked. She’s so stern and strict–I love it. And also, is it just me or do you guys ship Ms. Lupescu and Silas?! No? Just me? Okay. Lastly, Scarlett Perkins, her character kinda irked me a bit. There were qualities in her that I didn’t particulary liked but maybe the thing I wasn’t really keen into is that she’s too trusting. There were many characters mentioned in the book that I won’t be including, e.g. The Sleer, Indigo Man, Jack, Mrs. Perkins, Liza Hempstock, etc. because I won’t be able to bring justice to the rest of the characters. But what I’m going to say is that the author did an excellent job on outlining the characteristics of each person in the story, simple and straight-forward but endearing all the more. 

I’m trying to rationalize the elements of the book such as the ghosts, ghouls, etc. and I’m telling you I’m having a hard time. I can’t flag it as Bod’s hallucinations or it’s just Bod is really crazy or something on that line. There’s just so many elements to be rationalized. For example, how the hell can a child climb a crib or let alone stroll around outside in the cold air and even managed to climb a hill all on his own?! I mean…how the hell can people not see him?! I mean it’s night…but still. Haha. BUT, I’ve come to the conclusion that that is just the nature of this book. It’s just the universe in which the characters walk in, and that I should really just leave it at that. 😛 I’m having a hard time to process it because the story of this one is really in touch with the real world (not like all the High Fantasy I’m currently reading–okay, okay all the Maas books I’m reading haha). So that’s the reason why I’m feeling the need to rationalize this one but ehhhh I should just let it go.

The part of the book that is my favorite are the last two pages. I really bawled my eyes out right there. I even read it over and over, perhaps eight times. This was the part that got me into heaving sobs. I’m in that part in my life where I’m trying to be more independent and to start my own life away from my comfort zone and it just struck a nerve. I found a little part of me in Bod in the latter part. Reading this book just felt like perfect timing. As I have said before, some books just come to your life in the right time as long as you want to take a chance on it. (I totally made reading books some kind of a love life problem hahahaha.)

thought this book has a movie out already but apparently not. After a quick Google search, I found out that it was picked up by Disney but then let go after four months and then was forwarded to another person to make and currently is still in the works. So, I’m looking forward to that!

This book was just so simple and classy yet has a certain dimension to it that comes alive through Gaiman’s writing. There’s just a classic tone to it that you can’t help but be lulled in the story. And not to mention, McKean’s beautiful, beautiful illustrations. It’s such an easy read yet something that is also so inspiring. I’m going to go ahead and say that this is amongst my favorite books to date.


Do I recommend it? Hell yaz.


*Cover image and Synopsis via Goodreads

The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks

827610Title: The Wasp Factory

Author: Iain Banks

Series: none

Genre: Contemporary, Thriller, Fiction

Number of Pages (Paperback): 244

Date Published: April 1st of 1992 (first published in 1984)

Publisher: Abacus 

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

Frank, no ordinary sixteen-year-old, lives with his father outside a remote Scottish village. Their life is, to say the least, unconventional. Frank’s mother abandoned them years ago: his elder brother Eric is confined to a psychiatric hospital; and his father measures out his eccentricities on an imperial scale. Frank has turned to strange acts of violence to vent his frustrations. In the bizarre daily rituals there is some solace. But when news comes of Eric’s escape from the hospital Frank has to prepare the ground for his brother’s inevitable return – an event that explodes the mysteries of the past and changes Frank utterly.

Rate: 3.5 of 5

Get a copy: Book Depository (Paperback)


If I said that I was “conflicted” with my rating on this book, it would be a huge understatement. It’s a good book but I don’t know if it’s cut for my tastes just yet. I do acknowledge the fact that this is one of those controversial books to which my reaction was purely a roller coaster ride.

I thought the synopsis was really interesting and that got me hooked into it in just a snap. Needless to say, I had high hopes for this book. The copy I had acquired was a 25th anniversary edition so I was confident that this would wow me since it has managed to survive for more than 25 years now. What left me was a conflicting reaction to it.

This is certainly not for the soft-hearted reader. If you just want a light-hearted read, well then, get off this because my friend, this is not cut out for you. This has left me, perhaps eighty percent of the time, feeling disturbed–as if there was something over the horizons. It’s really not a nice feeling, I’m gonna tell you that.

There were so many channels of “mystery” for the story to go through and I was a little disappointed because I felt like there were too many pages that were wasted to the everyday life processes of Frank. I wanted to know more about his dad, his mom, Eric, his friends, etc. So many channels that may have been given the chance to be explored. But oh well. Half the time, the prospect of Eric and his backstory was the motivation for me to finish this book. I’ve picked this up and chucked it off in my bookshelf more than three times because I found myself as someone who cannot handle it. But then! Sixty pages away from the end of the book, shit started going down! THAT WAS A PLOT TWIST I CANNOT HANDLE AND IT CERTAINLY IS EXPLOSIVE (wink, wink). I didn’t expect that, no, it didn’t even pass through my mind–not once.

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Don’t get me started on the last paragraph of the book. It is so–just what an ending. It’s weird how the novel comes together in just that simple way, even a little childish in some sense. HOW?! *warning: don’t read the quote below if you don’t want spoilers*

“Poor Eric came home to see his brother, only to find (Zap! Pow! Dams burst! Bombs go off! Wasps fry: ttssss!) he’s got a sister.”

If there was any redeemable thing about it, I would say the ending. The beginning of the book up until the middle was kinda idle for my taste.  It didn’t keep me engaged all throughout it. But, I refused to make an opinion of a book if I didn’t even had the guts to finish it. Sometimes something is there in the end. And that proved to be right in this book’s case. So yeah, even though the ending was fire, I sure did hope that the beginning was more of a throat-getter.

Further, I must confess, I am still confused as to what really constitutes “the wasp factory” here. I know there is some sort of symbolism somewhere there but I’m still trying to reconcile my thoughts on this because so many ideas are swirling around my head as of the moment.

This was certainly a horrifying read. There was something about the particular deeds of killing that seemed to pass it off as something ordinary, e.g. doing the laundry, doing the dishes, taking a walk, etc.. It was even deemed as a “phase”. God, that gave me goosebumps.

I give this 3.5 because it was certainly more than something that’s okay but less than something I would deem 4-star worthy. I guess I still am not in that stage where I can further appreciate this. Or the genre is not something I would really fancy but it’s a book that I know is good, but did not like at the same time. But I must tell you, this. This is certainly literature. There were some sense of reality in it and I loved how raw it is and how it did not romanticize things but something that certainly made you think; disturbing, thought-provoking.

Do I recommend it? You know what? I don’t know, really. Okay, let’s come to a compromise. If you think you’re not too soft-hearted and you want to think, sure go on ahead and pick up a copy, trooper. On the other hand, if you think that you are more of a light reader, don’t even dare. Because, my man, your head will be twisted in odd directions. You have been warned; this is hard–straight-up. Although, maybe picking this up would heighten your horizon in some way. Well fuck, even in the recommendation part I’m still conflicted.

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*Cover image and Synopsis via Goodreads; Gifs via Giphy.