Perfect PLL Book #3 by Sara Shephard Review

Here we are book 3 and we have lots to discuss.

First of all, Aria and the fact that her mom can’t stand to look at her after the fact she knew about Byron and Meredith. Gross. I mean I know her mom is mad at her daughter but that’s still your daughter…yet she still says she can’t see Aria for a while so Aria is staying with Sean’s family.

Also, Aria painted a red A on Meredith’s chest for adulterer and I thought that was kind of fun, though nothing comes from it and I thought for sure Byron was gonna freak out about it.

Even though Aria is with Sean that doesn’t stop her feelings for Ezra as she ends up hanging out with him and telling him about her parents and everything going on and they reconnect… but not for long! Because A tells Sean about Aria and Ezra and Sean calls the POLICE. HA.

Yes, that’s right. Ezra Fitz went to JAIL. FINALLY. That’s why I needed to talk about Aria first I needed to get this out because this is what I needed lol. Instead of dragging us through their whole messy-ass relationship, they gave me what I needed. A brief romance that ended with the child predator being arrested. Thank you.

Needless to say that Aria and Sean are over and Aria is a bit homeless now because her mom still doesn’t want to see her, she’s not talking to her dad and her boyfriend has dumped her. Not sure what is next for Aria but I imagine something kooky is just around the corner.

Next, we have Emily, who wanted to tell the police about A. Poor girl. She hasn’t learned that you don’t do something A doesn’t want you to. Well, she finds out the hard way when A outs her to the whole school at a swim meet by posting photos of her and Maya around for everyone to see.

Unlike on the TV show where no one at school really finds out or cares, everyone at school is fetishizing Emily which is pretty gross. Like all the boys wanting to hang out with her to see her kiss a girl. Bleh. But also not surprising.

What’s really gross though is that her parents want her to try a gay conversion therapy camp place. And Emily thinks she should do it and “fix” herself until she realises that’s not how it works and she can’t change who she is. This is not good news for Mrs. Fields who definitely wants her child to be straight and is threatening to send her to Iowa to live with her aunt…

Thank God this is not what happens on the TV show because it would not have gone down well. Obviously, Emily’s mom is upset but she eventually comes around to everything, I don’t know if that will happen in the book though. I’m not sure what will happen for Emily now to be honest but she can’t just be shipped off she’s one of the Liars.

Then there is Spencer who is being made to see a therapist by her parents. Which I think is a good call, though it’s probably not best to be seeing the same therapist as your sister, there is definitely some conflict in that. Not to mention Melissa’s appointment is right after Spencer’s which is again not good.

Spencer finds out that she’s been suppressing horrible memories or traumatic events in her life as she is having a mental block on the fight she had with Alison on the night she disappeared. Through therapy and time she discovers that the night that Ali disappeared, they were fighting over the fact Alison was dating Ian and Spencer couldn’t have him. Yikes.

Alison apparently told Ian to kiss Spencer as a test to see if he would do anything for her and he did. And now Alison was holding her relationship with Ian over Spencer. And Spencer was angry with Alison and so she pushed her, and Alison fell and hit her head. So Spencer realises that she hurt Alison that night but she is sure she didn’t kill her…well she definitely didn’t carry Ali into her backyard and dump her body where the police found it at least.

So that’s one revelation. It’s good to know they kept key points about the girls similar to the TV show. Like the relationship with Ian and Spencer not remembering what happened that night. Though they made Spencer out to be on drugs when that happened on the TV which was a bit extra but there you go.

Anyway, on top of that Spencer and Melissa fight after A lets Melissa know that Spencer stole her essay for the Golden Orchid. Things get heated and Spencer ends up pushing Melissa down the stairs. Which is pretty dark, like I didn’t expect this from her but now her family thinks she’s dangerous. So it’ll be interesting to see where that goes.

And finally, we have Hanna who spends this book trying to prove to Mona they are still besties after she misses her Friendaversary with Mona to be questioned by the police about Alison’s disappearance. Naturally, Mona doesn’t want to listen to any excuses though, and kicks Hanna off of her birthday party court and uninvites her to the party completely.

But this gives Hanna the excuse to make friends with Lucas. Apparently, he was cool in school until the rumour of him being a hermaphrodite circulated around and now he is a nerd. But he is nice to Hanna and he invites her on a hot air balloon ride of all things and they bond haha. Like why would you trust anyone who you are hanging out with for the first time to take you up in a hot air balloon that’s such an easy way to get murdered but anyway Hanna makes it out alive.

Plus after Hanna gets humiliated at Mona’s party her and Lucas have a moment where they makeout so I’m wondering if they start to become a couple or not. Which I would be all for because we never got that on the TV show, and if Caleb is not going to show up I feel like Lucas is a good option for Hanna.

At the end of the book, we have Aria looking at an old video of her and the girls and making the connection between Alison and Ian and then thinking maybe Spencer had something to do with Alison’s death since she was crushing on Ian. And we have Hanna who receives a text from A but this time with a number that she recognises…looks like she knows who A is.

As Hanna is rushing to tell the girls, BAM! She gets hit by a car.

She knew too much. – A

Yep. Can’t say I’m surprised I saw the TV show. Similar events play out in season one at Mona’s birthday. Except for the girls at Camp Mona for her birthday and not at a Planetarium. Though I gotta say that Hanna getting hit by the car in the books makes way more sense than on the TV show.

The TV show says Hanna knew too much because she saw Noel Kahn write on the back of Ezra’s car while he is with Aria. But that ultimately leads nowhere because Noel is not A. But in the book? Hanna definitely knows who the real A is and that’s more interesting.

This book also has an A chapter but it’s not as cringey as the one from the first book. It also confirms that Mona slipped up when texting Hanna and it’s not a tactical slip to make her think A is someone else. So I guess if you were paying enough attention this is where you would figure out who A is, as before this I feel like there are not super strong hints that you can tell who it is?

Also interesting that Mona is pointing the girls toward Spencer killing Alison? Of course, she could have been lurking in the shadows that night and thought it was her. In the book, Spencer gets a text that alludes to the killer being right in front of her, while she’s standing at a mirror. So Mona could have easily seen them fight but not what happened next.

Well looks like all will be revealed in the next book which is exciting! I am looking forward to seeing where things go from here. I like seeing the elements they pulled out from the book for the TV show. I do think some of the things A made the girls do early on in the TV show were harsher than in the book. Particularly in relation to Hanna and bingeing and Sean/Lucas. But we’ll see what happens when new A comes into play.

Flawless PLL Book #2 by Sara Shepard Review

We are back with our second PLL book review! I feel like I couldn’t put it down I just had to know what happened. I also found out that when I had intended to read the series a few years ago, I was actually halfway through this one and stopped. Thank you Kindle app! But also don’t know why I stopped reading, there could be 100s of reasons but part of me thinks maybe it was because of exams and school. But that doesn’t matter now because I finished it this time!

So I think it makes sense to talk about each girl individually and all their drama because the girls are still not close yet. Yes, they discussed A briefly at Alison’s funeral but they are still keeping secrets to themselves. It is only at the end of the novel that they come together as Spencer spills some tea about The Jenna Thing, but we’ll get to that.

First off let’s talk about Aria, I feel like she didn’t have as much going on this time compared to the other girls. I also find her drama kind of boring. Thankfully Ezra Fitz was nowhere to be found in this novel. Not like in the TV show where he shows up at the funeral and he and Aria kiss. Bleh.

In this book, Aria is being pressured by A to tell her mom about the affair that Byron had with Meredith. Like I said I find this kind of boring. I guess because it matches up with the TV show. We know what happens, A writes a letter to Ella and she is devastated and can’t believe Aria knew the whole time. Ouch.

Aside from that, we see Aria get close to Sean Ackard who is Hanna’s ex. This was hinted at on the TV show but Aria shut it down because she could never do that to bestie Hanna. Except in the book she definitely does do that and doesn’t give Hanna a second thought because she and Sean broke up and Hanna and Aria aren’t friends. Savage.

I wasn’t expecting this pairing to happen and I don’t really know if I like it. Plus there’s the whole aspect of the girl code which was so obviously broken. I mean okay Aria and Hanna weren’t close anymore and Hanna had broken up with Sean but I still think it would be weird to date someone that your old friend also dated…but eh it’s high school and as long as Aria is hooking up with people her own age I can’t be mad. I just don’t see it lasting.

Meanwhile, Hanna is dealing with so many more issues. Like the fact she totaled Sean’s car and has to work at Sean’s family’s burn clinic to pay off the debt. Not cute. But still better than the dental clinic she had to work in on the TV show.

But also, Hanna’s dad is back and he has ulterior motives for wanting to see Hanna as he wants to bring his old family and his new family together. Gross.

Similar to the TV show the events unfold with Kate and Isobel as expected. That Kate ends up getting Hanna in more trouble by lying to Hanna and then exposing her terrible behavior to her dad. Except in the TV show, Hanna’s grandmother can see right through that crap. No such luck in the book, Hanna has no one to defend her and it looks like her dad may never speak to her again. Eep.

I honestly hate how none of the characters in this book have good parents lol. Like Hanna’s dad goes AWOL and starts a new life for himself and when he sees his daughter is clearly struggling he just pawns her off to her mother and goes back to his new family. And then Hanna’s mom is obviously a shitty parent who is never present and is sleeping with a cop to keep Hanna out of jail…I suppose that’s a “nice” thing to do for your daughter? But still shitty parenting lol.

Anyway, aside from the Kate drama, Hanna is also bullied by A into confessing to some girls at school that she has been making herself throw up. Which is horrible, but I am also glad they address Hanna’s eating disorder more in the books than in the TV show. Like in the TV show they mention it once and just act like it’s no big deal but it’s clearly still a very real thing in the books and I hope that Hanna can get it under control. I just wonder how far Mona will push her on it.

Next, we have Spencer who is totally head over heels in love with Wren. And it makes me sick. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again he is a full-ass adult who is hooking up with a teenager and it’s DISGUSTING. He calls Spencer not two days after breaking up with Melissa and then the first time Spencer hangs out with him they have sex. Ugh. Hate it.

I can totally see from Spencer’s point of view why she thought this would be okay but Wren is just an adult who took advantage of a child in that situation and it makes me want to barf.

But after Spencer sleeps with Wren she becomes the classic girl in love who is very clingy to Wren since she thought they had an amazing bond since they had sex. And it’s surprising to see Spencer fall like this I feel like in the TV show she is much stronger and the Wren thing doesn’t last as long. But yeah, naturally Wren gets annoyed with all of Spencer’s calls and texts and tells her it’s over.

And to make things worse, Spencer finds out from Melissa that Wren has actually been seeing her too. So not only is Wren scum for sleeping with a minor but he’s also been sleeping with her sister the whole time too! I hate him so much. And in the TV show, he ain’t much better so I guess he did deserve to be turned into a diamond.

I don’t know if we hear much from Wren after this book but I’m hoping not.

Also, Spencer stole her sister’s essays because she was way behind on school work and too busy focusing on Wren. But she also stole the essay on the TV show and if things play out the same then we know she kind of gets away with it. So not super important to note.

Then there’s Emily who is still struggling with her sexuality but she ends up making friends with Toby Cavanagh who saves her from a bad encounter with her ex Ben. Again, these events play out kind of similar to the TV show, except the dance they are at is homecoming and Toby doesn’t die.

I gotta tell you I was not expecting Toby to commit suicide. Like in the TV show he is Spencer’s main love interest and he actually seems like an okay guy! I am surprised they kept him around considering how quickly he is killed off in the books. This makes me wonder if Spencer has a different main love interest in the books or maybe none at all. I think I would prefer if the focus was on the drama and not the relationships so I’m fine if Spencer doesn’t have someone but we’ll see how it plays out.

It also turns out that Toby was the one who forced himself on Jenna and not the other way around like on TV, and that’s why he kills himself. He thought everyone knew his secret and he couldn’t live with it anymore. Even though the secret Emily was confronting him about was actually that she thought he killed Alison. Yikes. This is the tea that Spencer spills to the girls when they find out that Toby has died.

So yeah things took a turn at the end of the novel. All the girls think Toby was A and that they would be free but then Emily gets a text from A telling her “it’s not over till I say it is”. And then that’s the end of the book.

No A chapter at the end which is nice, I think it was good to end on that message because it’s a good cliffhanger and definitely makes me want to find out what happens next. I am hoping there is more deviation from the TV show because I find myself guessing what happens and that’s not always fun. I want to be shocked lol.

I am wondering if Jenna ever comes back to Rosewood properly or if we never see her again now that Toby is gone, I am wondering when Emily embraces her sexuality with Maya as it could still be a while, I wonder if Wren comes back though I really hope he doesn’t…and I also want to know what Hanna’s mom plans to do since her daughter is so ‘out of control’. And of course, I wonder if the girls will be able to figure out who A is now that Toby is gone, even though they aren’t really speaking at the minute.

And so that’s where we leave the girls for now. I am not sure what will come next exactly, other than Spencer’s essay thing kind of working out for her, Aria trying to keep her family together, and Emily trying to be straight lol. But I’m interested to see what A pushes them to do next. After all, I feel she is just getting started.

Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard Review

I am finally starting to read the PLL books! I have wanted to do this for years but I’m finally committed to it now.

I also don’t know what to call these blog posts because I guess they are reviews but mainly it’s just going to be me comparing the books to the TV show and also trying to piece together clues about who A is.

First of all though disclaimer: I already know who A is in the books. How could you watch the TV show and search A theories without being spoiled? So I know who it’s going to be and now I wanna see if there are hints to see if I can figure it out or guess.

Anyway yes, so here we are PLL. I’ve actually read the first book before. Back in 2013 when I thought I was going to read the series. I got to the second book and stopped for whatever reason lol I swear I’ll get through this time.

So the first book is basically the pilot of the TV show. We are introduced to the four girls and who they are now that Alison is missing. The TV show also reveals the girls were at a sleepover when Ali went missing but we do not know this in the first book.

Mainly the things I focused most on in this book were the differences between the TV show.

For instance, everyone is hella rich in the books. So I don’t think Hanna will be having any money troubles.

They also have pets! How wild lol and Emily has a whole ass family of siblings and her dad isn’t in the army. How strange. Also, her mum is racist towards Maya’s family which is not cute.

The appearances of the girls are also different in the books but I won’t be mad about that because that always happens when doing book adaptations to movies/TV.

So yeah those were things that were strange to me. Also, A sends the girls a lot of messages in the first book. In the pilot, I think they all get one each. But A seems relentless in the first book, texting Aria nonstop about Ezra, leaving notes for Hanna and emailing Spencer. I like this though because it really shows how forceful A is.

Also A is Mona in the beginning so tell me how she be laying high in a field at Noel’s house and sending all these messages to Aria at the same time lol. I mean she was maybe acting and wrote a script to auto send messages but for real how did she know Aria was gonna see Ezra?

I think that’s the biggest thing I wondered about while watching the show is wondering how Mona even did it all. I mean they say some crap about her mental illness making her feel omnipresent or something but there had to be more. So I am hoping the book gives me some insight.

There was also the A chapter at the end of the book which, apparently back in 2013 I loved but today I read it and it was kind of cringey. It gave me some Gossip Girl vibes like very much “and who am I? That’s a secret I’ll never tell” sort of thing. Probably could have done without it.

Though I wonder how often these A chapters happen or maybe it’s just at the end of each book. I don’t know if I like it though. We’ll see how it goes from here on out.

Another thing that was wild to me is how they write Aria and Ezra. I mean I’m 100% against Ezria because it’s creepy, I might have felt differently back in the day but now I can’t stop being like “HE IS HER TEACHER AND SHE’S UNDERAGE”. So I’ll probably complain about them a lot in every blog post lol.

Anyway, the way Ezra is written is like he might as well be Aria’s age. I mean him getting jealous over her flirting with Noel is so icky. And even when he is hurt when he thought Aria told someone about them. “I really liked you” bro get over it she’s 16 and you’re in your early 20s…

Yeah, it’s all icky and I hate it. The way they write it in the book also makes it so casual and I hate that too. So yeah not a fan of Ezria can’t wait for it to be shut down. Hope it happens soon lol.

It’s also wild how they write about Wren and Spencer and how he immediately is way more attracted to her than Melissa and stuff. Like there’s no build-up, I wish there had been more to it…not sure what else I would have wanted lol but it just seemed a tad unbelievable.

Not to mention the way Spencer’s family treat her it’s so gross. How about being angry at the 20 something student who is preying on your 16-year-old and not your 16-year-old???

Yeah, that’s another inappropriate relationship. Ick.

Aside from all of that, the book is a strong start into something interesting. I’m excited to get into the series for real this time. I’ve read bits and pieces about the book series online so I’m interested to see how it all plays out.

And of course, I’ll be blogging about it along the way. This is the kind of series I feel I’m going to have a lot of thoughts about. So stay tuned for another post probably very soon!

May 2022 Reading Wrap Up

I read quite a bit this month! Proud of myself considering last month was a bit of a fail reading-wise, but we soldier on.

Talking As Fast As I Can

I finished this one on the 1st May so I guess technically an April read? I covered it in my last post as well.

It was a nice one. Nothing super special I feel but a nice insight into Lauren Graham’s time as Lorelai in the Gilmore Girls reboot and some other fun anecdotes about her career as an actress. Would recommend it to any Gilmore Girls fan out there.

Sweet Water

I wasn’t planning on reading an Amazon Prime First Reads book this month, but I started it when I was out of the house and wanted something to read.

This one was actually a good one! Amazon Prime First Read selections can be hit or miss and I always have a love/hate relationship with the ones that I choose. But this one I liked. I’m not saying it was amazing though, murder mysteries are always touch and go with me.

I think this one had a good pace, I hate when a novel drags something out when they don’t need to. I think the mystery was just enough but nothing crazy that you couldn’t guess what was going on.

So yeah, this one would be on the higher end of 3 stars compared to others I’ve read. And I usually end up rating a lot of books I read 3 stars lol so I guess that’s saying something.

Cinderella is Dead

I read this one very quickly, credit to the fact that we were getting work done on our house and the electricity was off for a few hours haha.

I’m not usually one for fantasy books, which sounds ridiculous when I tell you I loved Twilight and Vampire Diaries in my teens lol but yeah I don’t know they just don’t usually have an appeal to me. So I was taking a chance with this one it sounded interesting.

I ended up really enjoying this, I think it was a good twist on an old story. I wasn’t expecting the plot twist at the end either. Honestly just a great story and something that kept me wanting to go back to see what would happen. I’d definitely recommend it if you enjoy fantasy/fairy tale type stories.

Pretty Little Liars

IT. IS. TIME.

I have been wanting to read this series basically since I watched the TV show, was disappointed in the ending and found out the books are better. I have read the first book I think twice before with the intention of reading more and I just haven’t. But I’m doing it this year.

So I actually managed to finish the first book in the series yesterday which means I can officially include it here! Yay! But because I want to talk more in-depth about the books they will be getting their own blog posts.

I want to discuss everything, the secrets, the drama the “who is A” of it all. I mean I know who it is already because the internet spoiled it for me long ago but I need to know if there are clues. I wanna relive my 16-year-old self’s life of being immersed in the PLL universe. So be ready for this because I am so ready for this.

But don’t worry, I will still be breaking up the series with other books in between. How many I couldn’t say but there will at least be a couple Bridgerton books thrown in there.

Anyway yes, that’s my reading for May, I don’t know if reading will pick up now I’ve started a series like PLL, in my head, those books are easy reads and not super long so I feel like I’ll get through them quickly but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

April 2022 Reading Wrap Up

This one is going to be a short one because I managed to read ONE book the whole month haha.

I actually didn’t even think I was taking that long to read this one book but I guess I did because well…the facts are it took me almost four weeks to read this book.

I’m not mad about it though, these things happen I feel like because I was off for Easter and not travelling etc I wasn’t reading much and so it’s not a big deal. We will just work on reading a bit more next month to make up for it.

So the book I read this month was:

When He Was Wicked

This is the 6th Bridgerton book and I did not like it lol.

First of all the first couple of times, I did some reading on it I was falling asleep while reading. Like partly because I was tired but also the story was not exciting.

The story goes that Francesca is married to John the Earl of Kilmartin and she has a wonderful life. However, Michael, John’s cousin is secretly in love with her. Eh. John ends up passing away very suddenly and so Francesca becomes a widow, and long story short she and Michael fall in love.

And I really did not like it. I mean I will give credit that because Francesca is not a virgin the love scenes were different than the usual “first-time” ones which have been in every other Bridgerton book so far. So that was something.

But Francesca’s constant indecision and vague “I can’t marry Michael just because” thoughts were so annoying. I am an indecisive person so I hate to see it in someone I’m reading about too. Just because I know it’s annoying when I can’t make up my mind never mind a fictional character. And there’s not even precise reasoning behind the indecision other than Francesca refusing to see Michael as anything but a friend really.

I also found that Michael’s plan to essentially trap Francesca in marriage by impregnating her is not the vibe. I know she never rejected his advances but it did not sit right with me at all.

So yeah, I was very glad to be done with this one. I suppose I could have just stopped reading it if I disliked it, but I’ve made it so far into the series I have to see it through to the end now. I probably won’t read the side books to the series but if I at least get through the main Bridgerton siblings that’ll be enough. Not sure how the other books will go but I can feel myself getting a bit fed up with them so I’m hoping to end it soon.

That being said I am still enjoying the TV show and am hoping for some creative changes to make some of the stories a bit more modern and more tolerable so…we’ll see how that goes.

Currently Reading: Talking As Fast As I Can

I kind of want to count this as part of my read books in April since I managed to read a lot of it in the last few days. But it’s not finished and it’s not even like I have 10 pages left either. I’m about 3/4s of the way through.

This is a non-fiction book written by Lauren Graham where she shares some stories of her time on Gilmore Girls and how she came to be where she is today.

The book is okay, for a non-fiction book. Lauren’s writing style is basically the talking style of Lorelai Gilmore which makes for an easy read. If you watch Gilmore Girls then you know, the characters talk fast so the book’s pace is fast. If you can read at the speed they talk haha.

But yeah I think I will finish it up in the next few days and I’ll be onto something else.

Reading plans for May consist of, reading the last of the physical books I bought a few months ago. I feel like I’ve had them for ages and I don’t know what’s been taking so long to read them – I guess I have been reading some Kindle books in between.

Another big goal is to actually start the Pretty Little Liars book series. I want to read it this year and I have officially finished my TV show rewatch so I want to get into the books when I can. Hopefully, by June I will have started into them, from what I hear they are better than the TV show so I’m looking forward to seeing what they bring to the PLL universe.

I’m not sure how much I will read in May, but I’m hoping it’s more than one book haha. I do have a holiday booked at the end of May but I’ll be with friends so not sure how much reading will get done, so better work on getting some books in before then!

March 2022 Reading Wrap Up

This month I was busy and so I feel like I wasn’t reading as much but we managed to finish one yesterday which makes a total of 3 books! Which I would say is about the average for me, so not bad.

Lie, Lie Again

When I started this one I thought I was going to really like it. But as I was reading it, I was realising the story wasn’t really going anywhere? I mean I thought there was going to be more mystery and drama.

The story follows three women who live in the same apartment complex. They all have their own secrets, which sounds interesting and mysterious but two of them have very basic and boring storylines. The most interesting one was Sylvia and even then it fell a bit flat for me.

I think it could be good in terms of a TV show but there are so many of them out there. So no, the book’s not super original but it was an enjoyable read. I just wish there had been a bit more drama or suspense to keep it a little more interesting. Still better than Open House though.

Loveboat, Reunion

I read the first book in this series a couple of years ago and I was so excited to get my hands on the sequel!

This book follows the story of Sophie and Xavier, they had a wild romance during Loveboat which ended up in flames. Now they are both trying to prove themselves as they return to the real world, Sophie as an AI uni student hoping to woo her professor and Xavier as a high school senior repeat who is struggling with dyslexia.

Honestly, when I first started reading it took me a while to figure out what was going on. I do not remember the first book at all lol so maybe I should have reread it before diving in here. This is a common theme for me with anything, even new seasons of TV shows I just never remember what happened beforehand. But oh well we figure out enough to keep reading.

Still, I really enjoyed this book! I was glad to learn more about Xavier and I was rooting for him and Sophie to work things out in the end. I definitely think I favoured Xavier’s storyline over Sophie’s; hers seemed a bit more surface level to me compared to Xavier’s struggles but I like how they intertwined.

I would highly recommend this book if you enjoyed the first one, I think it wraps up the Loveboat story nicely.

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

I feel like I read a lot of murder mysteries but this one I could not put down. I loved this.

It’s not like there’s anything in this murder mystery that is super different from others but I liked the main character Pip a lot. And I enjoyed her determination to solve this mystery. Plus I think it was one where you couldn’t immediately guess the storyline and those are always the best.

I will 100% be picking up the other two books in the series to see what happens next.

And that includes another month of reading. I do not have a currently reading at the moment since I just finished A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder yesterday. Though the next book I know I will be reading is another Bridgerton one since it is due. I think it’ll be the first Bridgerton book about a sibling I know little about so it will be interesting.

Other books I plan to read in April are books that I bought physical copies of a few months ago and should probably get around to reading. That being said I don’t know how many books I’ll be reading since I know I’m busy towards the end of April but we’ll try to read what we can.

So far I have read 8 books out of 22 and so I think I’ll reach my goal in a few months’ time. Yay!

February 2022 Reading Wrap Up

Not a bad month for reading! Read more than I thought I would so that’s good. So let’s dive into my thoughts.

Open House

Started this one in January, ended it on the 2nd of February and honestly I just wanted it to end. Like it was okay when I started but as the story went on I just felt like it was dragging and I just wanted to know who killed the girl.

Even when we found out it wasn’t that shocking or original. Which is fine because nothing is really original anymore and I love a good cliche from time to time. But this one did not do it for me. I was bored.

Plus like I said in my last post, I hated that it constantly changed the point of view. Sometimes I don’t mind that from a book but this one changed too much. I would have preferred if it had switched less, or if it at least only switched between the sisters. But yeah, anyway glad I finished it so I can move on to something else.

To Sir Philip, With Love

The 5th Bridgerton book. This one was about Eloise and her story was interesting. I have to say I did enjoy this one more than the last one.

Eloise is probably my favourite Bridgerton sibling, she’s opinionated and knows exactly what she wants and is not willing to settle for less. And I was happy for her to find love.

Not that her love interest was the best by any means haha. But still it was a cute story. I can’t tell if half the reason I like it so much was that it was better than the last book I read but I still enjoyed it.

It’ll be interesting to see what the rest of the novels will be like as we move on to the lesser known siblings. I hope their stories will be enjoyable or at least tolerable as we are heading towards the last few books. Can’t be stopping the series halfway through.

Release the Best

A nonfiction book! I rarely read these haha. The only times I really read them are when they are written by a YouTuber or a drag queen and this time it’s the latter.

Usually, when I read these I don’t expect much, I don’t mean it to be rude but most of these books are written by people who have never written books before and they are usually just okay. I enjoy reading them because I support the person who wrote them and I’m not expecting life-changing stuff from them.

But Bimini really brought it, they did their homework and I found their book to be educational to me. They discuss a lot about gender theory and growing up queer and finding themselves and I think that was really interesting. As a straight cis-woman, these are things I am not fully educated on so doing some reading on it was useful to me.

Bimini also gives us further reading resources at the back of the book so I know there are places to go if I want to delve more into the subject.

Overall it was an okay read, sometimes it got a bit rambly in places but that can happen sometimes, not a big deal. Still, I did learn some things from it so it was definitely worth picking up. Plus I love Bimini so of course, I’m going to support them, they are iconic.

Currently Reading: Lie, Lie Again

I started this book on the 26th of February and I think it’s going to be a good one. So far I’ve only read 50 pages but I have a good feeling about it. Which is more than I can say for the last Amazon Prime First Reads book I read – yes I’m looking at you, Open House.

But that’s where we are with reading. I actually finished Release the Beast halfway through February and I think I could have squeezed in another book for this month but I took a break from reading for a week or so. It’s not the worst, and I’ll still reach my Goodreads goal but sometimes I think “I definitely could have read more” lol.

What’s ahead for March reading is maybe another Amazon Prime First Read…maybe I have so many from last year I didn’t read so they’re always an option. Though I did buy a few physical books last month so they will take priority. And another Bridgerton book – the way I’ve been reading them is they’re every 4th book I read, so this month I read To Sir Philip, With Love which is the Bridgerton one, then Release the Beast, currently reading Lie, Lie again and then a third book and then we are back on Bridgerton. It’s been working out well.

Plus I am supposed to be heading back into the office again from March so I will have lots of extra reading time on the commute so I imagine I’ll get some good reading done in March. That or I’ll be tired and won’t read at all, we’ll see how it goes.

January 2022 Reading Wrap Up

I don’t always like to do big book reviews when I read so I thought each month I would list the books I read and give you a short paragraph on my thoughts.

If you want to know more of my thoughts then I can link to a longer review if I post one, but recently a short couple of paragraphs on Goodreads is enough for me.

If you wanna know more about my reading habits in real-time you can check out my Goodreads but I thought it would be cool to have these summaries too to see how much I read per month.

So without further ado, here are my reads for January!

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

I started reading this one at the end of last year and I kind of wanted to finish it before then so I could start afresh with a new book this year. But realistically, I read the first 30 pages two days before the new year so the majority was read in January.

Once I got properly stuck into this book, I could not put it down. I was obsessed and it was so good. Evelyn is an icon and her story is one that I think everyone should read.

So we started strong and I give this all the stars and recommend it 100%

The Girl that Reads on the Metro

I picked this up last year, thought it was going to be a cute read. I guess it was to some degree but overall a bit of a letdown.

I found it hard to really enjoy the story since I ended up rereading paragraphs sometimes because I lost track of what was going on. Not sure if it was due to the translation or just me reading through things too quickly but it wasn’t my fave.

Also, the poetic writing style was not for me. It was definitely beautiful writing and I can appreciate that but sometimes I could do without all the fluffy description because I just want to know what happens.

So yeah, this one was not the best and I almost considered giving up on it but because it was short I held out. Definitely was not my thing.

Currently Reading: Open House

This one I am currently halfway through. So far it’s okay, not my favourite mystery. The constant switching point of view kind of bothers me though because I would rather you stay on one person for at least a few chapters before moving on, some chapters are only 3 pages long so it’s a lot to keep switching. But we’re halfway there so might as well keep going haha.

And that concludes the January reading wrap up. I’d say it was an okay month for reading, there were weeks I didn’t read at all and others where I read a lot. Can’t complain though as we start off the reading challenge of the year quite strong.

This year in terms of books I am choosing to read, I don’t have much of a plan. Mainly my goal is to finish the Bridgerton series and start the PLL book series. And maybe read more of the Amazon Prime First Reads books, I get a free one every month from prime and yet I haven’t been reading them lol. They can be a bit hit or miss but they’re free so can’t complain.

So yeah, lots of books to be reading, don’t always make time for them but we do what we can. I can’t imagine I’ll be reading many books next month as February always seems very short but who knows? I might surprise myself.

You Love Me by Caroline Kepnes Review

Settle in lads. This one is a long one.

Just when you think things couldn’t get crazier for Joe, he is thrown into the small town of Bainbridge where all he wants is his librarian but there are so many people standing in his way. Naturally. But this time it’s different for Joe, he’s a different person than he was before, he has a son now and he is a better person. He will not kill anyone.

Spoilers from here on out, although anytime I do a blog post review there’s always spoilers but I feel like I need to start warning people so yes. All the spoilers here, stop reading now haha.

You know, I thought it was kind of crap that Joe said he wouldn’t kill anyone this time around, but he didn’t! That’s not to say there wasn’t a lot of death though because there definitely was, but none of it was at Joe’s hands! Hooray! Proud of him, this is growth lol.

So yeah, we are with Joe out there in the world after getting out of prison. I was confused when I first started reading because I thought I had missed something but I hadn’t. Joe got out of jail with the help of the Quinns but they paid him off so he would disappear and so now he is in Bainbridge, pining after a new girl while stalking Love’s Instagram to check up on his son. Also Love named their son Forty and that is so gross.

Naturally, getting this new girl Mary Kay is not going to be easy for Joe. There are always obstacles and by that I mean people in his way to getting his “prize”. First of all, the overbearing best friend, Melanda. Joe does not exactly hit it off with her and she immediately becomes annoying af. So maybe Joe should just kill her and it will all be fine right?

No he can’t. He’s reformed. He’s not that person anymore. But then when Melanda catches him hanging around outside Mary Kay’s house she ends up kidnapped and in Joe’s whisper room. Sounds so familiar right? No it was a misunderstanding, Melanda thought Joe was after MK’s daughter, but he wasn’t and now he has his future girlfriend’s BFF hiding out in the basement. Cool.

Surprisingly Joe doesn’t kill Melanda, but he knows he can’t keep her in the basement forever. He spins some story about her moving away and finding love and ditching Mary Kay. Which Joe thinks is good for her because they are too co-dependent and Melanda doesn’t even like Mary Kay.

While Melanda is locked up in Joe’s basement, he finds out there’s another huge obstacle in his way to Mary Kay – she’s MARRIED. And worse, he’s a musician and an ex-drug addict. Bad news. And also again, potentially someone Joe might kill off?

But he doesn’t kill the husband either, he just pretends to be a huge Philstan – yeah probably the worst thing I’ve ever heard of – to try to convince Phil to divorce Mary Kay. Seems straight forward enough and so different in comparison to the old Joe. Proud of him, yet also itching for him to just kill the low life? I mean I don’t know why I’m rooting for a serial killer to kill people but like everyone in this book was SO ANNOYING that I wanted them gone as much as Joe lol.

Some time passes and Joe thinks he is beginning to win over Mary Kay and maybe everything will be alright for them. Until there’s another complication. Enter Oliver, he was hired by the Quinns to spy on Joe. Super fun. Joe has a stalker. Now he definitely can’t get caught killing anyone because otherwise Oliver could report back to the Quinns and Joe will never get the chance to be with his son.

Too bad for Joe, as he decided to be nice to Melanda and finally move the TV into the whisper room for her to be able to see more clearly. That was his mistake. I knew there was a reason that Melanda was begging for the TV, she ended up smashing it and using the glass to kill herself. Bad news for Joe, he now has a dead body in his house and he has to get rid of it. Even though he didn’t kill her, he can’t just leave her here or call anyone because it’s hella sus she was there in the first place.

So Joe tries to get rid of the body, only to be caught by his buddy Oliver. This is when he strikes a deal with Oliver so that he doesn’t tell the Quinns what he saw. Basically if Oliver wants something, Joe buys it for him. Turns out Oliver got screwed over by the Quinns and isn’t getting paid as much as Joe. And this is when Oliver literally becomes the worst and most annoying person in the book and I kind of just want Joe to kill him. But he can’t, if he does then Oliver’s brother will kill him and no one wants that. So Oliver sticks around.

Meanwhile, Joe is still trying to worm his way in with Mary Kay and he thinks it’ll be easier now her BFF is no longer in the picture. But there’s still the husband. Although turns out he didn’t have to worry about him too much because he does win over the girl in the end, but they’re seeing each other on the sly until Mary Kay can get the divorce sorted.

But it’s not over for Joe just yet because while he and Mary Kay are hooking up, Phil overdoses. So I guess Joe is getting lucky with everyone offing themselves so he doesn’t have to lol. Although this time everybody knows about it and Mary Kay is shutting Joe out because if she hadn’t have been with him then maybe her shitty husband would still be alive. Yikes.

And just when Joe thinks he’s back in with MK after all the grieving and what not, Phil’s brother rolls into town. And honestly, does Joe never catch a break? I mean I guess I shouldn’t be rooting for Joe to be happy but I always secretly am, I thought he would’ve been happy with Love but that wasn’t working out, but it looked like him and Mary Kay had a real chance…but no all these people be getting in the way.

Phil’s brother hangs around for a while, he’s annoying and is a life coach who tries to tell women that their feelings aren’t real and to think with their head and it sounds like the worst thing. Yet Joe still ain’t about to kill anyone so he tries to find other ways to take down the brother and then he hits the jackpot. Turns out Phil’s brother is a creep and has forced himself on multiple women and so he gets taken out by the #MeToo movement. Woo! Goodbye brother, hello Joe and MK forever.

But it still ain’t over hahahaha. Honestly even writing this it’s wild. But in comes LOVE. Yeah that’s right Love wants to see Joe. And that’s weird, because I thought she never wanted to see Joe again and I’m wondering if this is following a little along the lines of the TV show and how Love is also crazy and the same as Joe. Although somehow on the TV show I think it’s way more escalated and Joe’s more afraid of her on the TV show.

Anyway, Love demands Joe fly out to LA so he does and he finds Love in a hotel room with a GUN. Yikes. I thought Joe might die but I didn’t think it would be at the hands of Love. Turns out she is mad that Joe has moved on from her and their son. And she knows that Joe would have preferred to watch them from afar which is why she was always posting on Instagram, but then Joe stopped watching them and he moved onto a new family.

Love is clearly crazy and depressed and Joe can’t talk her down and next thing you know, Joe is shot in the head. Oh my God. Honestly thought this might have been where it ended, but it didn’t because there was still some book left so Joe lives, HE LIVES! But unfortunately Love committed suicide. Yep another suicide. This book is wild, why does death follow Joe everywhere he goes? He’s cursed for sure.

So Joe wakes up in hospital to find out Love had post-partum depression and she didn’t really want Joe to leave her she thought he would fight for her and their son but he didn’t. So she tried to kill Joe and then she killed herself. Super dark Love. Like I didn’t think she had this in her, but depression does bad things to people.

After Joe finds out from Love’s dad that he will never see his son again he goes back to Bainbridge to try to win MK back one last time. She isn’t happy that he bailed on her even though he literally got shot like come on sis, give him a chance. But she sends him away so Joe goes back home to rest, because he got shot so he should rest.

LOL NO REST FOR JOE. He’s being kidnapped by Seamus, MK’s other friend who is all about CrossFit and the definition of toxic masculinity and I hate him. Seamus is going to kill Joe because he came back for MK and he can’t have that. Seamus was finally gonna get the girl after Phil left but nah, Joe got there first. And so here we are with Joe trapped in the forest and possibly going to die AGAIN. And seriously, Joe can’t catch a break.

This time it’s worse though because I so did not want him to die at the hands of Seamus, of all people. Like what? Nah. Joe deserves to be taken out by a true villain and not just some annoying dude who has been waiting in the wings for years. I mean no doubt Joe deserves to die after everything he’s done but like not like this. I mean I guess exactly like this but not because of Seamus lol.

Luckily Joe gets rescued by Oliver! Yay! Oliver has a purpose! Sort of. I mean glad he came to Joe’s rescue but he’s still annoying af and talking to Joe about this TV show he’s gonna pitch about Joe’s life (lol sounds familiar You on Netflix much). And so Joe is safe but he’s still paying for Oliver’s crap and again, if Joe was gonna make one kill this book, could it be Oliver?

Finally, after ALL of that. Joe gets the girl. He and MK get married and it’s cute and I’m finally like yes, this is it. They live happily ever after, Joe deserves it he literally escaped death twice and he should definitely have some PTSD or something but he’s fine and he’s with his girl…

And then MK’s daughter tries to put the moves on Joe and it’s weird and uncomfortable because she is a CHILD. And this is when Joe learns that Seamus was sleeping with the daughter this whole damn time and so when Seamus kidnapped Joe it was actually about the daughter and not MK and it’s so so so gross. And then it makes me think this is why Melanda attacked Joe in the woods and assumed he was after MK’s daughter. Maybe she knew about Seamus…hmm well can’t ask her because she’s dead.

But anyway, MK comes in and finds her daughter trying to seduce her new husband and is furious. And then there’s a lot of mother daughter fighting and next thing you know…MK has been pushed down the stairs by her daughter.

Cut the epilogue, Joe has moved to Florida, and opened the bookstore him and Mary Kay always talked about opening. Turns out Mary Kay went into a coma but they are going to be pulling the plug on her. And Joe is once again alone, the daughter packed up and went off to college so at least Joe didn’t have to deal with that. But yeah…he opens the bookstore and naturally there’s a women who walks in and you’d think that Joe might give up by now but no, he wants to know this girl…

And that is where we end it. Finally. Honestly the end was a roller coaster, after the Love thing it just kept going and going and I didn’t really like it? I mean yes okay the whole series is far fetched and wild and crazy but this really was next level. And I really don’t like when books do that, like ramp it up to 100 at the very end and just keep throwing in things last minute like hi I didn’t need Nomi (the daughter) to suddenly come out and throw herself at Joe like nah, gross.

I guess it would make sense that Joe would end up losing another girl and in line with this book he didn’t even kill her. Sad. I would’ve been fine with him riding off into the sunset with Mary Kay in their bookstore. It would’ve been cute but life can’t be that simple, not for Joe.

I wonder if there will be another book or if this is the end. I think I would be fine if this was it, I mean Joe’s been through a lot and there’s only so many of these books you can do before it becomes too much. I mean it’s always going to be Joe chasing after a girl and probably killing the odd person here and there, so it makes sense to end it here. Especially because so much craziness happened this time around it felt like the end.

So yeah, I’m fine leaving Joe here but because I enjoy the writing style so much I would also be okay if there was another one lol but I think four is the limit. But we see what happens.

On the bright side there is always season 3 of the Netflix show. I’m not sure what it will be like because I believe it was written before or at the same time as the third book so it will probably be different. Especially since Joe didn’t go to jail in the TV show and Love is still around and crazy too lol. So I’m excited to see where that goes and if it will be just as wild.

In the meantime it’s time to go on and probably read something lighter haha. Hopefully something that doesn’t have six plot twists at the end would be nice.

American Royals: Majesty by Katharine McGee Review

I wasn’t planning on writing a whole blog post about this but then I started writing my Goodreads review and it kept growing and growing and so hi, how are ya?

We are back with the American Royals and even though it’s been over a year since I read the first one, I jumped back in like I never left. Which is good, considering the book still follows the point of view of five different characters and I didn’t want to spend a lot of time catching up again.

So in this book we are on the run up to Beatrice’s wedding because now that she is queen, she has to be married because apparently women are not capable of running a country on their own. *Rolls eyes*

But Beatrice is not the only one who is struggling when it comes to love. Everybody has issues with it in this book. I guess the first book was similar but I felt it was more prominent in this book. That or it just felt kind of repetitive?

Everyone was pretending to love someone but actually fell in love or realised they loved someone else and it was just a lot for one book. Like it definitely felt like every rom-com cliché ever wrapped into one book. Which was still enjoyable to read but like they could have made one plot line not involve loving someone else you know?

One love storyline I didn’t really like was the whole Jeff, Daphne, Ethan, Nina love square. Like date someone outside your own circle lads. I guess it makes sense for the drama and every TV show does something similar but I don’t know, Nina could’ve dated a nice boy from somewhere else and Daphne could’ve just kept hooking up with Ethan on the sly and that could have been fun. Ooh that’s totally fanfiction somewhere. Maybe I’ll write it lol.

Everyone else was fine, I mean the whole Sam and Marshall thing was totally obvious, but I was rooting for them. And actually the whole time I was reading about them it just made me think of Bridgerton because the exact same thing happens to Daphne and the Duke. And well I’m a sucker for those kind of stories it seems haha.

Beatrice and Teddy I was surprised about to be honest. I thought Beatrice would have wanted to be with Conor but it makes sense for her to fall for Teddy. And so I support it because Teddy is a great guy.

But what we love more than Beatrice falling in love is her becoming the strong independent queen of America. I think it’s great she is not going to get married right away and rule on her own. She doesn’t need a man, it’s nice she found a man but she don’t need him to rule her country. We stan Queen Bee.

Speaking of ladies we stan, I also love Daphne. She gives me Blair Waldorf vibes and I am here for it. We love a strong woman who will do what it takes to get what she wants. Even if that means alienating the man she wants from everyone else so she can become a princess.

I just can’t believe Himari forgave her for the coma and sending her away to Japan. But that’s what best friends do I guess lol. Himari is the Serena to Daphne’s Blair. I kind of hope Himari does come back for some kind of revenge because that would be totally Gossip Girl and I would eat that shit up.

Overall I really loved this book. I gave it 4/5 because of all the love stuff which was too much for me. Especially towards the end, everyone is declaring their love for everyone and I’m like “tell me what the security threat was please” lol. Though the security threat turned out to be nothing I would have loved a little plot twist thrown in there.

I am kind of hoping for another book in the series just because I want to see Beatrice really step into her role as queen, and Sam and Nina on their adventures with no boys and of course Daphne and how she deals with losing the boy she really loved.

At the same time though I know this could lead to a slippery slope where it starts off strong and then loses its way and I don’t want that to happen. So if there’s another book I’ll be down for the ride but I just don’t want it to get out of hand where it becomes terrible but redeems itself in the last book because that’s how these things go.

So those were my thoughts on American Royals. I am going to be digging into the first Bridgerton book next and I’m excited but also not sure what I’m going to be getting into. Just because you like the TV show doesn’t always mean you’ll like the books, so we see what happens. I’m sure I’ll be back soon to share all my thoughts on it.