Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Book Review: The Paris Wife

The Paris Wife by Paula Mclain

A deeply evocative story of ambition and betrayal, The Paris Wife captures a remarkable period of time and a love affair between two unforgettable people: Ernest Hemingway and his wife Hadley.

Chicago, 1920: Hadley Richardson is a quiet twenty-eight-year-old who has all but given up on love and happiness—until she meets Ernest Hemingway and her life changes forever. Following a whirlwind courtship and wedding, the pair set sail for Paris, where they become the golden couple in a lively and volatile group—the fabled “Lost Generation”—that includes Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, and F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. 
Though deeply in love, the Hemingways are ill-prepared for the hard-drinking and fast-living life of Jazz Age Paris, which hardly values traditional notions of family and monogamy. Surrounded by beautiful women and competing egos, Ernest struggles to find the voice that will earn him a place in history, pouring all the richness and intensity of his life with Hadley and their circle of friends into the novel that will become The Sun Also Rises. Hadley, meanwhile, strives to hold on to her sense of self as the demands of life with Ernest grow costly and her roles as wife, friend, and muse become more challenging. Despite their extraordinary bond, they eventually find themselves facing the ultimate crisis of their marriage—a deception that will lead to the unraveling of everything they fought so hard for. 
A heartbreaking portrayal of love and torn loyalty, The Paris Wife is all the more poignant because we know that, in the end, Hemingway wrote that he would rather have died than fallen in love with anyone but Hadley.

If you are an Ernest Hemingway fan like me, I recommend this read. I usually review Young Adult novels, but I thought this one would be a nice change of pace. 
A Paris Wife  takes place in the early 1900's. The years of the flappers, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Jazz. It starts of with Ernest and Hadley meeting each other for the first time at a gathering. They soon fall in love after sending countless letters to each other. They seem like the most perfect couple and become husband and wife at a young age. Now they are extremely poor as Ernest hasn't developed his career quite yet, and Hadley only has trust fund money coming in once a year. 

They decide to move to Paris to further Ernest's career, and move into a dumpy apartment. Besides this everything goes smoothly. They spend what money that can spend on trips taken together. Before you know it Hadley becomes pregnant and Ernest is pissed about it. He swears Hadley did it on purpose and everything goes downhill for their marriage then. However this is when Ernest's career starts to blossom, and he begins meeting all kinds of people including F. Scott Fitzgerald. The Great Gatsby (one of my favorite books) is mentioned and Ernest has no interest in reading it. Hadley and Ernest develop a small tight knit group of friends, whom The Sun Also Rises is based on. After Hadley reads the novel, she realizes she is never mentioned in the book and is hurt by this because all of their friends, even Ernest, are in the book. The names are of course changed. After this Hadley's best friend Pauline Pfeiffer comes clean and lets Hadley know she has been sleeping with Ernest. 

I felt extremely bad for Hadley for the entire book. She was absolutely in love with Ernest, but I didn't get a feeling he felt the same way for their marriage. This book taught me a lot about Ernest Hemingway and that he had a horrible view on living. I personally don't think he really ever "lived", and screwed up all of his marriages. BUT I still love The Sun Also Rises. 

My rating: 4/5 stars 

Sorry for the Spiffy Books Hiatus

Hey everyone! I have been completely slammed during the summer semester. Its awful considering summer should be the time to read as many books as you want. I have read a few and those reviews will be coming in the next week. Lookout for the following:

  • A review on The Paris Wife  by Paula Mclain
  • A review on Transition Witness  by Teresa Tsalaky 
  • A review on The Here and Now by Ann Brashares 
  • A review on More Than This by Patrick Ness 
  • Possibly a new name?!

I missed all of you, and thank you for understanding. 

With love, 

Friday, April 25, 2014

A Book Reivew: A Tragic Heart

A Tragic Heart by S. Elle Cameron 
Taylor Caldwell is a sixteen year old who’s struggling with her own personal demons. Constantly feeling left out and struggling with depression, Taylor frequently looks toward the worst in life, with the exception of her high school crush, Mason. When assigned to a project with Mason, Taylor is surprised when their relationship grows much bigger than expected, and the young couple ultimately decides to marry. Disowned by her family yet saved from her old ways, Taylor soon enters the happiest time in her life…until it all begins to crumble. As her newfound life falls to pieces around her, Taylor must fight to find purpose or succumb to the darkness surrounding her because, as Mason states, "truth is we are all tragedies waiting to happen; we just have to remember to have the rescue crew nearby when it strikes."

I had the opportunity to receive a copy from the author in exchange for a completely honest review...

I have not once said this about a book, or a song, or a movie, or anything. This book just changed my life and the way I view things. Everyone is so absolutely broken in their own way, and now I understand that. Taylor, Mason, and Peyton's story is just so freakin crazy. At first I was kind of eh about it because Taylor and Mason get married at 17, but it got soooo much better. It's such a realistic story, however, over dramatic. It has just really opened my eyes. Love does not have an age, and every single relationship is different and is basically no one's business.
I totally did not see the end coming. I literally cried during the last 30-ish pages. Their story is just so tragically beautiful..
Fair warning: this book is extremely depressing. I don't know if I want to eat a dozen cupcakes or go to sleep.

My rating: 4.5/5

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Book Review: Where She Went

Where She went by Gayle Forman is the sequel to If I Stay. If you haven't read If I Stay, I think you should! It's fantastic.

It's been three years since Mia walked out of Adam's life.

And three years he's spent wondering why.

When their paths cross again in New York City, Adam and Mia are brought back together for one life-changing night.

Adam finally has the opportunity to ask Mia the questions that have been haunting him. But will a few hours in this magical city be enough to lay their past to rest, for good - or can you really have a second chance at first love?

I enjoyed this book, but did I love it? No. There was no comparison to If I Stay. I found myself skimming through some chapters mainly because they were soo boring. However, the ending I did love. I was hoping to love the whole book, not just the ending. Maybe I was expecting something different. I liked how the story was in Adam's point of view, but I thought it could have been better in Mia's POV. **Spoilers coming up**
I'm super jealous of her by the way. I wish I was super famous and could travel around the world with my also super famous boyfriend. How rad would that be? 
That was the only part of the book I liked...when they finally realized they still love each other and should be together. Too bad I had to read the entire book to figure that out. 

My rating: 3/5 

Be well, stay well, and read If I Stay. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

A Book Review: Spearwood Academy Episodes 1-5

Spearwood Academy: Episodes 1-5 by A.S. Oren  

Avalon is the first female of her kind in centuries. She is a dragon shapeshifter, who is painfully cursed to turn into her dragon form every night. Spearwood Academy has the answers to her questions, but there is just one problem, up until she came along it was an all boy school. How ever will this Harry Potter geek, Whovian and Nerdfighter wade through the waters of testosterone, greed and even love?
I was asked to write an honest review in exchange for a free book. Since this is an honest review, I am not biased in any way...

Anyways! I loved these first five episodes! It was one of those stories that I couldn't stop thinking about while cooking dinner. The writing was very well done when it came to building up the story and character. I enjoyed all of the characters, and could picture Spearwood Academy perfectly. I have never read a book about humans changing into dragons, but this was an amazing start.
The only reason why I didn't give the book 5/5 stars is because I didn't think there were enough heart pumping moments throughout these episodes. However, the ending was crazy and I can't wait to read the next few episodes!
My rating: 4/5 stars 

Let me know if you read this kick ass book! 

Be well

Friday, April 11, 2014


Hey guys I haven't done this in a while, but I found a really interesting books. Its on Amazon and its now $0.00 as opposed to $13.99! Yay. Okay so here it is:

Love is Darkness by Caroline Hanson
Valerie Dearborn wants a cotton candy life, but it’s more like a puffer fish: pointy, unusual, and—if not prepared exactly right—deadly.

In London for graduate school, Val knows she's finally free. Her father and ex-almost-boyfriend are back in California and she's out of the Vampire hunting biz for good. Or is she?

She draws the attention of Lucas, a 1600 year old Vampire, and King to his kind. He’s also wicked hot. As golden as Lucifer, and just as tempting, he makes Valerie an offer she can't refuse— help him find out if the Others (Empaths, Fey and Werewolves) still exist or he'll stop protecting those she loves.

Lucas tells her that Empaths were a Vampire’s biggest weakness before going extinct hundreds of years ago. While the Fey or a Werewolf might kill a Vampire, an Empath could enslave them, seducing or harming with emotions at will. The one detail he leaves out? Valerie is an Empath.

And after 1600 years of an emotionless existence, Lucas wants Valerie like a recovering alcoholic wants a wine cooler.

Can she keep those she loves alive, stop Lucas from munching on her, survive a fanged revolution and still find a way to have that boring, normal life she’s always wanted? Probably not, but boy is she gonna try!

 **This book contains adult content. I have not read it so I don't know how "adult" the content is.**

You can find the book here.
If anyone reads this please let me know :)



Sunday, April 6, 2014

Liebster Award!

The Liebster Award is given in recognition to new blogs. Thank you A Kernel of Nonsense for nominating me! 

Here are the rules:
Link back and thank the blogger who nominated you in your post.
List 11 facts about yourself.
Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
Pick 5-10 new bloggers (must have less than 200 followers) to nominate and ask them 11 new questions. Do not renominate the blogger that nominated you.
Go to each new blogger’s site and inform them of their nomination.

1. I'm currently in my 3rd year of college working toward getting a Computer Science degree. 
2. I am from California, but when I turned 18 I moved to Pennsylvania. Now I live in Colorado. 
3. I have a dog, a cat and a leopard gecko. 
4. I am the oldest child of 3. 
5. I really really REALLY hate cucumbers. 
6. I accidentally knocked out my sister's teeth when we were little (they were baby teeth) 
7. I am really funny. 
8. I live with my boyfriend.
9. Everyone in my family reads. 
10. I am very stubborn. 
11. I love all animals. Except chickens...they really freak me out. 

Questions from A Kernel of Nonsense 
1. Have you ever traveled outside of your own country?
I have been to Mexico. I would absolutely love to travel the world and experience different cultures. 
2. What book would you NOT like to be made into a movie?
Any of the Jenny Pox books because they'd be terrible.
3. Which book character do you relate to most?
Tessa Gray in The Infernal Devices. 
4. Name one book that you absolutely hated.
Lord of the Flies
5. Favorite childhood movie?
Space Jam! 
6. If you had to give up television or music, which would you choose?
This is such a tough question, but I would say music. 
7. Which book should everyone read?
Animal Farm
8. What is the last book you reread?
Looking for Alaska 
9. Quick! The dead have risen! Zombies are here. Who is the first person you contact?
My sister and then my brother. Hopefully they are together. 
10. If you could visit any country, which country would you choose and why?
Paris because I have always thought it to be romantic. Maybe its only in movies :p
11. If you could live in a different era, which era would it be?
I love the Victorian era. The clothes, the hair, the chivalry..oh my goodness. 

Blogs I Nominated  
1. A Perfection Called Books
2. Fangirling Misses
3. A Book Paradise
4. My Fantabulous Bookshelf
5. Unquenchable Reads

Questions For My Nominees 
1. Where are you from?
2. What is your favorite genre to read?
3. Do you read one book at a time or 10 like me?
4. What novel do you wish is turned into a movie?
5. Do you have any pets?
6. What hobbies, besides reading, do you have?
7. What is the most adventurous thing you have done?
8. If you could meet anyone from any era, who would it be?
9. What is your favorite book?
10. What is your least favorite book?
11. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?