Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson | Book Review

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Title: Second Chance Summer

Author: Morgan Matson

Publishing Details: Published May 8th 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Pages: 482 pages

Format: Kobo e-reader


Summary: Taylor Edwards’ family might not be the closest-knit—everyone is a little too busy and over-scheduled—but for the most part, they get along just fine. Then Taylor’s dad gets devastating news, and her parents decide that the family will spend one last summer all together at their old lake house in the Pocono Mountains.

Crammed into a place much smaller and more rustic than they are used to, they begin to get to know each other again. And Taylor discovers that the people she thought she had left behind haven’t actually gone anywhere. Her former best friend is still around, as is her first boyfriend…and he’s much cuter at seventeen than he was at twelve.

As the summer progresses and the Edwards become more of a family, they’re more aware than ever that they’re battling a ticking clock. Sometimes, though, there is just enough time to get a second chance—with family, with friends, and with love.


Review: This book is just so hyped, even now, after 4 years of publishing which led to me having very very high expectations for it. I’ve never read Morgan Matson books although pretty much all she writes is a big hit.

50% – I’m waiting for something to happen. ANYTHING!
The protagonist, Taylor has no healthy relationship with anyone in the world. We get it. Yet we’re reminded that OVER and OVER again of that and the fact that something really bad happened 5 years ago which changed her life! She was 12 years old. I don’t even remember how I was back then! I don’t understand what could possibly be so terrible to have happened at such a tender age that she just completely changed?! As far as I recalled there was no such traumatic event covered in the book like – suicide, rape, murder, depression? Nothing! Something traumatic does happen, but when she’s 17. Not the same incident.

We’re info dumped about the family and that they visit the Lake house together. But that’s all they do mostly. None of them seems interested in bonding with one another, ignoring each other most of the time, getting annoyed by them, etc. You’d believe that after whatever was happening, they’d do more than just get groceries twice.

I don’t get how Lisa and Henry are still pissed for whatever went down when they were 12. Honestly. Kids don’t hold grudges that long. Henry being her neighbor STILL doesn’t bump into her as often as a normal neighbor would. Its also really irritating how we’re reminded AGAIN and AGAIN that Taylor has no special skills at all and how everyone else is superior that way.

*le sigh*

100% – Now that I know what happened 5 years back, I just feel disappointed. Its so stupid I can’t even. You can’t hate someone for something like this so early in your life. It’s just not how childhood works. Even so, I was so glad things worked out between those three.
The only part I liked about the book was probably the fact that Warren, Taylor’s brother overcame his shyness and was brave enough to face his fears head on with smart decisions, unlike Taylor herself. I feel like her character didn’t much develop throughout, and just did in the last page all of a sudden.

Also, MURPHY! I love him. ❤

*awww*

The book deals with sickness and trauma too. How everyone has a different way of coping with sadness. I especially liked how even though she was not at all close to her mother, who seemed to prefer her sister, in the end it all worked out.

I really liked Henry, and I definitely believe that he deserves much better than Taylor. #NoHate
There’s friendship, loss, family, love, heartbreak. The entire mix needed for a good contemporary. Even so I did not enjoy it as much as other people do. Most of the time I’m not bothered by such tropes, but those were all I could think of during reading this.

I know I’m in the minority here, but I really hope Matson’s other books surprise me and end up on my favorites shelf.


Rating: 3

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2016 Reading Goals

Better late than never!

I read 150 books in 2015, even though a lot were graphic novels. Since its my last year in college along with work, I’m not sure how much I’ll be able to read.

So I put my Goodreads Goal – 100 books.

I really want to finish a series per month, so 12 in total. If I don’t feel like continuing with the same, I might jump on to some other series. Here are the series I’ve chosen as of now:

  • Uglies (1/4 done)
  • A Song of Ice and Fire (hopefully) (1/5 done)
  • Eragon (1/4 done)
  • The Winner’s Curse (1/3 done)
  • The Infernal Devices (0/3 done)
  • Marked (re-read)
  • The Lunar Chronicles (1/5 done)
  • The Raven Boys Quartet (0/4 done)
  • The 5th wave (2/3 done)
  • Half Bad (0/3 done)
  • Daughter of smoke and bone (1/3 done)
  • Lux series (2/5 done)

I’d also like to read more Classics and Literary Fiction novels. I thought I’d do that with the next challenge, cause most of the books will include in both.

The Rory Gilmore Challenge

For those who don’t know what this is, the protagonist from Gilmore Girls is really into reading, and someone made a list of all the books mentioned or seen on the show. There are around 340 in total, but I picked out some I was interested in reading. I’d really like to read at least 15 out of the 25 I picked.

Ze List:

  • Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
  • Carrie by Stephen King
  • The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
  • Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  • A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
  • The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells
  • Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Emma by Jane Austen
  • Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  • Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  • The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • Rapunzel by Grimm Brothers
  • The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  • The Shining by Stephen King
  • Snow White and Rose Red by Grimm Brothers
  • Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
  • The Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum

 

That’s all folks! What are your goals this new year?

Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon TBR!

Hey you guys! I’m so sorry for being absent for the past two months. Its been real hectic with the job and college and it sucks. If you want to follow my reading pattern, go add me on Goodreads. I read a lot and update there regularly!

The Dewey’s 24 hour readathon starts on the 17th Oct to 18th Oct. If you guys want to participate go check out their website – HERE

Anyway, since its a weekend and this readathon is awesome, I wanted to be a part of it. I know there’s a high chance I won’t be able to read much because I have a seminar to attend and so my TBR mostly consists of Graphic Novels and short books. Its over ambitious but I really hope I can do this! This is my TBR for the weekend / readathon –


          


Are you participating too? Have you read any of these books, if yes then which one should I pick first? What are your plans for the weekend? Let me know in the comments below! 🙂


UPDATE:

So the readathon just got over. I finished 5 books in total. But I’m pretty happy with that since I was busy for most of the 24 hours.

The books I read – 

The Bad Beginning –   2

More Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops –  4

Through The Woods –  5

Sex Criminals Vol. 2 –  3

The Wicked + The Divine Vol. 2 –  4

Drool worthy covers #5

Ennara and the fallen druid by Angela Myron (Ennara #1)


SummaryWhen a mysterious curse threatens to transform everyone into shadowy demons, a magical eleven year-old girl must travel to a sunken city ruin—fighting pirates, monsters, and an undead sorcerer along the way—to find a weapon that can save her world.


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Teaser Tuesday #4

“How you can sit there, calmly eating muffins when we are in this horrible trouble, I can’t make out. You seem to me to be perfectly heartless.”

“Well, I can’t eat muffins in an agitated manner. The butter would probably get on my cuffs. One should always eat muffins quite calmly. It is the only way to eat them.”

“I say it’s perfectly heartless your eating muffins at all, under the circumstances.”
Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest

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Teaser Tuesday #3

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! So I decided why not include this feature on my blog? It’s fun! If you want to do the same just do the following:

• Grab your current read.
• Open to a random page.
• Share “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page.
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My Teasers: 

  “Hopefully as you get older, you start to learn how to live with your demon. It’s hard at first. Some people give their demon so much room that there is no space in their head or bed for love. They feed their demon and it gets really strong and then it makes them stay in abusive relationships or starve their beautiful bodies. But sometimes, you get a little older and get a little bored of the demon. Through good therapy and friends and self-love you can practice treating the demon like a hacky, annoying cousin. Maybe a day even comes when you are getting dressed for a fancy event and it whispers, “You aren’t pretty,” and you go, “I know, I know, now let me find my earrings.” Sometimes you say, “Demon, I promise you I will let you remind me of my ugliness, but right now I am having hot sex so I will check in later.” Amy Poehler, Yes Please.

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Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Title:

Red Queen

Author:

Victoria Aveyard

Published:

10th February 2015

Stand Alone/Series:

Red Queen Trilogy #1

Pages:

400 pages

Format:

Kobo eArc

Genre:

Fantasy/YA

Why I read it:

It was one of my most anticipated releases of 2015.

Summary:

Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with red and those with silver. Mare and her family are lowly Reds, destined to serve the Silver elite whose supernatural abilities make them nearly gods. Mare steals what she can to help her family survive, but when her best friend is conscripted into the army she gambles everything to win his freedom. A twist of fate leads her to the royal palace itself, where, in front of the king and all his nobles, she discovers a power of her own—an ability she didn’t know she had. Except . . . her blood is Red.

To hide this impossibility, the king forces her into the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks her new position to aid the Scarlet Guard—the leaders of a Red rebellion. Her actions put into motion a deadly and violent dance, pitting prince against prince—and Mare against her own heart.

From debut author Victoria Aveyard comes a lush, vivid fantasy series where loyalty and desire can tear you apart and the only certainty is betrayal.

Review:

I’m having a major book hangover because of this book. I don’t know where to start! This book follows a society where Silver-Bloods rule whereas Red-Bloods are the slaves, and serve. They’re currently in war with another Silver-Bloods nation and more Reds are falling day by day. The Reds are kept in really bad condition when the Silvers enjoy all the pleasures. A typical dystopian novel where the weaker class rebels against the ruling class to make their living somewhat better. But wait. The Silvers have superpowers like telekinesis, manipulating metal, earth, water, having extra strong hands, etc.

So when a Red is found out having powers in front of all the High Houses, and its impossible to kill her off, the Royal Queen and King decide to lie and make her one of them. The events which follow are completely action packed and interesting. I’d like to know more about certain places mentioned in the book, just mentioned. The love triangle (?) was a bit annoying cause it was pretty evident who Mare, the protagonist liked, and was outright naive. The other two main characters Cal and Maven were interesting. The Queen was a bitch, obviously. The King didn’t seem to make an appearance much. Mare’s family is what we can connect to. The Reds are the people we connect with, and the Silvers are the people who were cold and calculating. The rebellion was the best thing she could believe could happen, and so she joined up. The training and magic part was the best, as well as the ending because the plot twists everywhere were okay, but the last one literally blew my mind!

There was info dumping in the start, but which series doesn’t have that? And this time, I realize I didn’t mind it at all. The action kept me wanting more and I couldn’t stop. I have not read Red Rising by Pierce Brown or the Selection, but I’ve heard fans of those books will enjoy this book since it has many similarities.

Quotes:

This is the true division between Silvers and Reds: the color of our blood. This simple difference somehow makes them stronger, smarter, better than us. 

I’ll teach you what it’s like to know fear.

The gods rule is still. They have come down from the stars. And they are no longer kind.

It is impossible. It is foolish. It is our best chance.

I guess causing pain is all I’m good for.

We’re objects up there, living statues meant to serve.

What my people are doing to you and yours is wrong to the deepest levels of humanity. Oppressing you, trapping you in an endless cycle of poverty and death, just because we think you are different from us? That is not right.

What I need and what I want are two very different things.

As beautiful as this world is, it’s just as dangerous. People who are not useful, people who make mistakes, they can be removed.

To look powerful is to be powerful.

There is nothing wrong with being different.

Rating:

5