Published by HarperTeen
Publication Date: May 3rd 2016
Purchase Links Amazon
A revenge that will consume her. A love that will ruin her.
Emelina Flores has nothing. Her home in Ruina has been ravaged by war. She lacks the powers of her fellow Ruined. Worst of all, she witnessed her parents’ brutal murders and watched helplessly as her sister, Olivia, was kidnapped.
But because Em has nothing, she has nothing to lose. Driven by a blind desire for revenge, Em sets off on a dangerous journey to the enemy kingdom of Lera. Somewhere within Lera’s borders, Em hopes to find Olivia. But in order to find her, Em must infiltrate the royal family.
In a brilliant, elaborate plan of deception and murder, Em marries Prince Casimir, next in line to take Lera’s throne. If anyone in Lera discovers Em is not Casimir’s true betrothed, Em will be executed on the spot. But it’s the only way to salvage Em’s kingdom and what is left of her family.
Em is determined to succeed, but the closer she gets to the prince, the more she questions her mission. Em’s rage-filled heart begins to soften. But with her life—and her family—on the line, love could be Em’s deadliest mistake.
RUINED was one of the books that I was really hoping would appear at ALAMW16. After all, it sounded great, and I was looking forward to reading it. So, when I saw that they were handing out copies, I was very happy. Because I loved the synopsis of RUINED, I decided to bring it with me on vacation. After all, what could be better than reading a great book by the beach? Unfortunately, it didn’t live up to my expectations.
From the moment I started reading, I realized that this book wasn’t going to be as good as I thought. In the beginning, I had a deja vu moment (which I later realized was because it was similar to The Orphan Queen). As you all know, I LOVED TOQ, so I wasn’t quite sure what to think. On hindsight, Ruined felt like a patchwork quilt that just took a little bit of plot from a ton of different YA fantasies. There wasn’t anything unique about it!
I thought that the characters were developed, but nothing special. I feel like Emelina and Cas were the typical fantasy duo. A prince and a princess, on opposite sides of war, who eventually have to marry and sometimes fall in love. Seriously can there ever be a different pattern? It’s so frustrating to me.
Ruined was a quick read but nothing special. I give it 3/5stars.
What You Always Wanted (If Only . . ., #8) by Kristin Rae
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Publication Date: March 29th 2016
Purchase Links Amazon
If only…he was the boy she’s been dreaming of.
Theatre girl Maddie Brooks has always had high standards for guys. But she has yet to find one who can live up to the classic Hollywood heartthrobs, especially the dreamy song-and-dance man Gene Kelly.
When Maddie begins to carpool with Jesse Morales, her new neighbor and star pitcher of the baseball team, she’s struck by his wit, good looks, and love for his family—but a guy so into sports is definitely not her style. Then Maddie discovers that Jesse was raised as a dancer and still practices in the community theatre’s dance studio to keep in shape. Perhaps her perfect dream guy exists after all! But when it becomes clear that baseball—not dance—is Jesse’s passion, can Maddie find a way to let her dream guy go and appreciate the charms of the amazing guy in front of her?
This fun, high school theatre romance in the If Only line is for anyone who has ever wished for that impossibly perfect guy.
Are you looking for a cliche filled YA contemporary book? If so, WHAT YOU ALWAYS WANTED is definitely what you currently want. Get it? Get the bad pun? Yes? No? *coughs* Okay, I’ll continue.
Let’s see…A girl moves to a new town. She happens to find a friend immediately. CHECK. She enters school and finds eye candy. CHECK. The eye candy happens to be her friend’s brother. CHECK.
Okay, don’t worry, I’m not going to go any further into the cliches- and I didn’t spoil anything major. But, just from those couple of sentences, I hope you can tell that you’re in for a very unoriginal book. Sure, the characters were fine- some were actually funny! But overall, they were mostly bland and didn’t stand out. The romance? Super predictable. Honestly, nothing shocked me about this book. I predicted the ending from a mile away.
Now, the writing itself was fine. I actually liked the author’s style, because it flowed nicely. So, please don’t get me wrong. I do like the writing- I’m not criticizing the author. I just didn’t like the plot of the book. I prefer to be surprised! I like plot twists! But hey- that’s just me.
Overall, if you can get past the cliches, this book is decent. I give it 3/5stars.