Thursday, 21 June 2018

My most anticipated releases of the year (part 3) // Grabby Hands

Hello, beautiful people!


Today, I'm back with another of my Grabby Hands posts, where I talk about all of my most anticipated book releases. I am doing those every three months, so today I'm here to present to you my Summer 2018 edition, aka July to September releases. Of course, it doesn't include every single new release for those months or anything, those are, of course, the books I need to get my hands on like... RIGHT NOW.




Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

Published: July 7th 2018 by Del Rey
Genres: adult, fantasy, retelling

At long last. I adored Naomi Novik's Uprooted, which came out forever ago (and by that I mean: three years ago) and I had been wanting to read something else by her. Apparently, this one is inspired by Lithuanian/Russian folklore (from what I gathered from early reviews, I might be wrong) and follows Miryem, who comes from a family of moneylenders and is sent to collect money from villagers. For unknown reasons, she manages to change silver to gold, which leads her story to be tangled with creatures that haunt the wood and their king. *dramatic music* Spinning Silver sounds absolutely amazing and I cannot wait to devour it!


Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

Published: July 31st 2018 by Katherine Tegen Books
Genres: young adult, fantasy, retelling


Excuse me, but I've been waiting to read it forever, because it's a villain origin story and I adore those so much. It's about Evie, who has been casted out as a witch ever since her best friend Anna drowned. One day, she meets a girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna and is convinced her best friend survived, even though the other girl denies it. Both of them meet charming princes and believe at a chance at their happily ever after, but Anna has secrets of her own and Evie would do anything to help her. The blurb says: "The rise of Hans Christian Andersen’s iconic villainess is a heart-wrenching story of friendship, betrayal, and a girl pushed beyond her limits—to become a monster." and if it isn't enough to convince you, I don't know what will.


Bellewether by Susanna Kearsley

Published: August 7nd 2018 by Sourcebooks Landmark
Genres: historical fiction

If you don't know, Susanna Kearsley is my favourite historical fiction writer as well as writing inspiration. Yup. No biggies. So of course, Bellewether has been one of my most anticipated reads of 2018 ever since I heard she was working on a new project. This one is set in 1759, in the North American colonies, during the Seven Years War which opposed France and Britain. When French officers are brought as prisoners to Long Island, it changes Lydia Wilde's life, because she eventually develops feelings for a French-Canadian lieutenant. Centuries later, their story has become a local legend, that Charley, the new curator of the Wilde House Museum, is set on exploring to understand what happened. I actually got an ARC of it and am planning to read it in July, so I'll be talking to you about it and fangirling about Susanna Kearley's writing some more very soon on here!



These Rebel Waves (Stream Raiders #1) by Sara Raasch

Published: August 7th 2018 by Balzer + Bray
Genres: young adult, fantasy


You know you've been waiting for a book for a long time when you've been following the Pinterest inspiration board of it when it didn't even have a title yet. Anyway, Sara Raasch is the author of the Snow Like Ashes' trilogy, which I really liked, and I'm so happy that she's finally publishing more books, especially this one, which sounds like the book of my dreams or something. It has a) pirates b) a dichotomy between a magic land/a country driven by religion c) an island d) a black market e) conspiracies. It sounds absolutely amazing and I can't wait to get my hands on it!


Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson

Published: August 7th 2018 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Genres: young adult, fantasy

Another author whose previous trilogy I adore has a new book coming out. *throws confettis into the air* Dance of Thieves is the first book in a new duology set in the same world that The Remnant Chronicles (you know, The Kiss of Deception, The Heart of Betrayal and The Beauty of Darkness --> I want to reread them again), so of course, I need it. The main characters are a reformed thief and the young leader of an outlaw dynasty? Give it to me now. It's gonna be so much fun and I have my fingers crossed that we'll see some of the characters of The Remnant Chronicles again. Oh wait, I have a reason to reread them now. I have to, just in case.


City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab

Published: August 28th 2018 by Scholastic
Genres: middle grade, fantasy


I mean, it's a new Victoria Schwab novel, so, I don't really have to explain why I need it so badly, right? It follows Cassidy, a young girl whose parents are a sort of (inept) ghost-hunting team, but she can actually see ghosts, her best friend Jacob is one. The family heads to Edinburgh, which is very haunted, and Cassidy meets another girl who can also see the dead and tells her that her job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil. Cass isn't quite so sure about it, but she joins a fight against the Red Raven, a sinister being who haunts the city. I am beyond excited to read this novel, it's been some time since I last read middle grade and I'm so curious about the story, especially as it's set in Edinburgh!


edited by Jessica Spotswood and Tess Sharpe

Published: August 28th 2018 by Harlequin Teen
Genres: anthology, young adult, fantasy


I love YA anthologies so much, I mention some of them often enough in my most anticipated releases (as I'm typing this, I've been reading the All Out anthology, so, see?). This one has fifteen contemporary, historical, and futuristic stories featuring witchy heroines who are diverse in race, class, sexuality, religion, geography, and era. I don't know that many of the authors who contributed, but I've read and loved Emery Lord's novels, Robin Talley's Lies We Tell Ourselves and previous short stories I've read from Anna-Marie McLemore and Jessica Spotswood. I'm so excited to discover even more YA authors, it always motivates me more to pick up some of their novels (I'll be on the lookout for Elizabeth May and Zoraida Córdova the most).

As She Ascends by Jodi Meadows

Published: September 11th 2018 by Katherine Tegen Books
Genres: young adult, fantasy


I've had trouble with sequels this year. Either I just don't pick them up, or they've been disappointing me (there are exceptions to this rule, but I can think of... one). Nevertheless, there are always authors I trust and Jodi Meadows is one of them. I adored the first book in the Fallen Isles trilogy, Before She Ignites, as well as everything she wrote, so I have faith it will put me back on tracks with sequels. This trilogy has dragons and secrets and a main character with anxiety, I devoured the first one and I can't wait to know what happens next. Moreover, the truth is, I quite miss fantasy. I haven't read a lot of it lately because I've been disappointed by some novels... But I miss it and a world I love will help.



Wildcard by Marie Lu


Published: September 18th by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Genres: young adult, science fiction


Warcross was amazing. I'm not really surprised because Marie Lu is such a talented author and I've always adored her books, but I'm so happy it was the case for Warcross as well. I don't read a lot of science-fiction type of books, but I adored the world it was set in (reading about video games is the best) as well as the characters. It kept me on the edge of my seat until the very end (even though I had guessed part of the plot twist) and I've needed the sequel ever since then. September can't come fast enough!



For a Muse of Fire by Heidi Heilig

Published: September 25th 2018  by Greenwillow Books
Genres: young adult, fantasy

I read Heidi Heilig's debut, The Girl From Everywhere, when it came out a few years ago and really enjoyed it, so I was curious to know what the author would come up next, this one definitely sounds interesting! It follows Jetta, who comes from a troupe of shadow players, it seems like she's moving puppets without string or stick. In truth, she is able to see the souls of people who recently passed away and bind them to puppets with her blood. However, practicing the old ways has been forbidden ever since the colonial army conquered Jetta's country, but she manages to earn a spot aboard the royal ship where she'll have to hide the truth on her powers. But as rebellion seethes and as Jetta meets a young smuggler, she will face truths and decisions that she never imagined—and safety will never seem so far away. This trilogy is set in a world inspired by Asian cultures and French colonialism, it has a bipolar heroine and the story is told through different formats. I really cannot wait to get my hands on this one. 



Published: September 25th 2018 by Delacorte Press
Genres: young adult, historical fiction, retelling


Kiersten White is an author I've been keeping my eyes on for the past few years, I read Illusions of Fate and And I Darken* by her, which I adored. Her stories always intrigue me so much and The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein is no exception. This one follows Elizabeth Lavenza, who has had a tough life and is on the verge of being thrown out into the streets, until she is brought to the home of Victor Frankenstein, a boy who has everything, except a friend. She becomes her friend and is taken in by his family, but as the years pass, her survival depends on managing Victor's dangerous temper and entertaining his every whim. I am so excited about this one because the main character is a secondary character from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and I so trust Kiersten White with this. 

*I haven't read Now I Rise, the second book in that trilogy, yet, but I've decided to binge-read it when I also get the third one! I cannot wait, the first novel was so promising.


Vengeful by V.E. Schwab

Published: September 25th 2018by Tor
Genres: adult, science fiction


I am beyond excited to have not only one, but TWO of Victoria Schwab's novels to talk about in this post. I can't believe that Vengeful is now a written novel and that we will get our hands on it in a few months. I am so curious to see where the story will go next, as for years, it wasn't sure whether we would get Vengeful or not and that it got rewritten many times to make it as amazing as possible. It's been quite a while since we got a new novel by Victoria Schwab, I can't wait to drown in her words again and to be surprised by everything that goes down. Also, it gives me another reason to reread Vicious, so cheers to that! If you haven't read Vicious yet, just go for it, don't try to figure out what it's about or anything, JUST READ IT.

Are you excited for any of these books? 
What are your most anticipated releases for July, August and September?


Lots of love,

Lucie

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

TOP 5 // Classics I want to read this summer


Hello, beautiful people!

It's been a while since I last wrote a 'top 5 books I want to read' post and I had really missed those, because I love talking about books I really want to read, especially when it comes to classics. Now that I'm almost on holidays, I have way more time to read classics and I couldn't be happier about that, I feel like I haven't read that much of them this year (sure Lucie, you managed to read War and Peace, Middlemarch and Shirley, which were quite lengthy ones, and others). So today, I'm here to talk to you about those I desperately want to read; funnily enough I found two of them second-hand yesterday, when that post had been drafted for a week.


Mary Barton by Elizabeth Gaskell (1848)

It has occurred to me that I haven't read anything by Elizabeth Gaskell since Victober 2017 and I'm a bit mad at myself for that, especially since I have so little of her novels left to read (Mary BartonSylvia's Lovers and Cranford, but I never know if that one is considered a novel or not). Granted, I also have her biography of Charlotte Brontë and some of the novellas and short stories left after that, but still, it's not the same. Anyhow, Mary Barton was Gaskell's first novel and I'm so looking forward to reading it. The main character, Mary, rejects her working class lover Jem Wilson, thinking of marrying Henry Carson, the mill-owner's son, in the hope of making a better life for herself and her father, a trade unionist. But when Henry is shot down in the street and Jem becomes the main suspect, Mary finds herself painfully torn between the two men. It sounds so good and I still can't believe I found the Penguin English Library edition of it (see the picture at the beginning of the post), as it's out of print!


The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot (1860)

I recently read Middlemarch by George Eliot and adored it so much that I've been thinking about picking up the rest of the author's works. I had heard from several readers that The Mill on the Floss was more approachable than Middlemarch, but I got through that one, so I'm confident I'll enjoy the first as well. The Mill on the Floss follows Maggie Tulliver, who is always trying to win the approval of her parents, but her personality often brings her into conflict with her family. It is said to have an interesting portrayal of sibling relationships, which is one of my weaknesses in literature and that it's considered George Eliot's most autobiographical novel. Moreover, I've heard such amazing things about the heroine of this novel and I cannot wait to meet her. By the way, have I mentioned that I'm planning on getting the Penguin English Library edition? It's absolutely gorgeous, but no one is surprised. 


Let's take a moment to stare at it:





L'Œuvre by Emile Zola (1886)

You might not know that about me, but Emile Zola is one of my favourite French writers. I have a very special relationship with L'Œuvre (The Masterpiece in English), because I've been meaning to read it for almost nine years, ever since we had to imagine what happened after one of the scenes for a class. Yet, I never got around to read it, still telling myself, years after years, that I needed to get to it. This summer, I have no more excuses, because I borrowed my grandmother's copy and I can't wait to finally know what happened after that scene. L'Œuvre is the story of a young artist moving to Paris to find success and is conquered by the flaws in his own genius. While his childhood friend becomes a successful novelist, the artist's originality is mocked at the Salon and he gradually turns to a doomed obsession with one great canvas. It is said to be a quite autobiographical novel for Zola and to provide unique insight into Zola's relationship with the painter Cézanne. 

The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy (1887)

I haven't read anything by Thomas Hardy since The Mayor of Casterbridge in February (which was amazing) and I really miss his writing, so I have to read as many of his works as possible this summer, starting with The Woodlanders. This one narrates the rivalry for the hand of Grace Melbury between a loyal woodlander and a sophisticated outsider. According to the Penguin Classics edition, The Woodlanders, with its thematic portrayal of the role of social class, gender, and evolutionary survival, as well as its insights into the capacities and limitations of language, exhibits Hardy's acute awareness of his era's most troubling dilemmas. It sounds amazing, as all of the works of Thomas Hardy that I've read so far, I cannot wait to get to it.

Frenchman's Creek by Daphne du Maurier (1941)

Last but not least, we're leaving 19th century to move on to modern classics and Daphne du Maurier, as always. I adore Daphne du Maurier, both as a writer and as a woman, she's one of my biggest inspirations. Frenchman's Creek is the only one of her most popular novels I have left to read and I'm so looking forward to it, I have missed Cornwall, her words, her characters and the atmosphere she always manages to create. It's going to be my sixth novel by her, then I'll try her short stories, because I'm so curious about The BirdsIn the meantime, this novel follows Lady Dona St Columb, who seems to be involved in every intrigue of the Restoration Court, but she secretly despises the Court life. She retreats at her husband's Cosnish estate, but it used to be the base of a French pirate, hunted down by all Cornwall. Upon meeting him, Dona's thirst for adventure has never been more aroused and together they embark on a quest, which will force Dona to make the ultimate choice, between sacrificing her lover to death, or risk her own life to save him.


That's it for the classics I want to read the most this summer! I also want to read more French literature once again, The Three Musketeers (Les Trois Mousquetaires) by Alexandre Dumas and Guermantes' Way (Le Côté de Guermantes) by Marcel Proust are also patiently waiting for me, but I've mentioned them on other 'top 5' posts and I haven't forgotten about them.


Are there any classics you want to get to this summer?



Lots of love,
Lucie

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Reading wrap-up + favourites // May 2018



Hello, beautiful people!

As I'm typing this, I finished revising my master's thesis and I believe it is the best way to conclude the month of May (I can't believe I finished writing it on Tuesday, at long last!). May was a tough month, to say the least, because I was so stressed out about uni, as well as for other personal things. May still had good moments though, because I came back home to my parents' and will stay there for the entire summer, saw my best friend all the time, went to the beach, saw my grandmother getting better and saying she hadn't walked like this in twenty years, watched the royal wedding and cooked English food, watched too many movies and TV shows, fangirled too much and cuddled our pets. I feel like May lasted forever, so now I cannot wait to see what June will have in store for me.


W H A T  I  R E A D


I didn't read as much than usual in May, but I still have a pretty good wrap-up. I wouldn't say I was in a reading slump, I just didn't have time and when I did, I was in the mood to watch TV shows and that's okay. Here are the books that I read:

  • The Labors of Hercules by Agatha Christie, 3.5/5 stars
  • Star Wars: Bloodline by Claudia Gray, 4.5/5 stars
  • The Oddling Prince by Nancy Springer, 2/5 stars
  • How To Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake, 3.75/5 stars
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (2013), issues #1-27, by Brian Michael Bendis, 3.75/5 stars
  • Middlemarch by George Eliot, 4 stars

My favourite read of the month was, by far, Star Wars: Bloodline. By now, you know that a) I'm a Star Wars fan, b) can't write a wrap-up without mentioning it or Kylo Ren (yes, I did  it on purpose, it's a running gag at this point), so: there. Anyhow, Bloodline was my first Star Wars novel outside of the novelizations and it was brilliant! I loved reading about events that led to The Force Awakens, to see Leia again and to fall for Ransolm Casterfo (the author imagined him as Tom Hiddleston, I'll say no more). I also really enjoyed Middlemarch, it was my first George Eliot and I really want to read the rest of her works now. I'm planning on getting second-hand Victorian classics for the summer, so I can go back to them, I had missed them so.


F A V O U R I T E  B L O G  P O S T S



Ashleigh @ A Frolic Through Fiction went to Stratford-upon-Avon, where Shakespeare's birth place is!
Mishma @ Chasing Faerytales wrote an ultimate guide to YA books with mental health representation.
Morgane @ The Beauty and the Bookstore discussed why new romance shouldn't be treated as illegitimate and how it differs from erotic literature.
Cait @ Paper Fury announced her second published novel (!!) and interviewed herself.
Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books talked about how to find new ideas and inspiration to blog (the first gif is Andy Dwyer from Parks and Rec aND I SCREAMED).
Resh Susan @ The Book Satchel interviewed five readers who shared their reading habits and tips.
Marie @ The Bibliologist interviewed herself (I love those kind of posts because it's hilarious, okay?!) for her first bookstagram anniversary.
Robin LaFevers announced on her blog that the His Fair Assassin trilogy was getting new paperback covers, because the fourth book is coming out next year. She started revealing them, this month with the one for Grave Mercy and I adore it, I can't wait to buy them in October, then reread the series! 




F A V O U R I T E S


MISC. // Marvel


I started May rewatching Avengers: Infinity War, then almost every single Marvel movie with my best friend, who was catching up on them. I just wanted to rewatch the Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor franchises, but Marvel marathons are fun, so. Nevertheless, I wasn't quite done with Marvel yet. I needed more. I wanted to rewatch Guardians of the Galaxy again, but Caroline said we had just rewatched it. *sigh* It had been a week, so I really don't know why she said that. AHEM. So, to have more Marvel content, I started reading comics again and I couldn't be happier about that. It was perfect, considering how little reading time I had in May. I read Guardians of the Galaxy (2013) and it broke my heart, but it was really good (except for the crossovers where you don't have all the information, ugh)! So now that I'm back to comics, I shall catch up with Miss Marvel, I miss Kamala Khan.

MUSIC // Cinderella OST (2015)

I love listening to movie soundtracks while I'm studying, last year I wrote master's thesis #1 to The Theory of Everything, but master's thesis #2 was born from Cinderella. Fun fact: Cinderella was my favourite princess as a child and I love the live-action movie, even though it's cheesy, the cast is amazing (I mean, Hayley Atwell plays Lily James' mother and they're my faves) and I've been in the mood to rewatch it forever. Listening to this soundtrack always makes me in a good mood, despite studying and it makes me feel magical or something. Anyhow, I love it.

Now let's move on to the TV shows!




TV SHOW // Legion (FOX)

I hope everyone is pretending to be surprised that it's on the list this month. I was only half-including it last month because I had only watched two episodes, but I watched seven of them this month and I can't believe we only have two left. *cries* Do I have to tell you again how brilliant I find this show? Because it is. I had missed feeling confused 80% of the time, the soundtrack, Dan Stevens, the aesthetically pleasing visuals. Aubrey Plaza is really killing it this season (like in the first one), I'm still on the floor since I caught up with the show. I've been watching something else with her, so I couldn't help but compare a bit, I can tell you that she really is amazing in Legion, wow. The second season really is confirming the show as one of my all time favourites and I'm so grateful for one thing that happened in this week's episode. I knew I was right to love it all along. Thank you, Noah Hawley.

TV SHOW // The Bold Type (Freeform)


I binge-watched the first season of The Bold Type in two days at the beginning of the month and quickly became obsessed with it. It follows Jane, Kat and Sutton, three best friends who work for Scarlet, a women's global magazine in New York. Sometimes, you find the right TV show, the one that's perfect for you at that exact moment in your life, that's what The Bold Type was for me. It tackles topics such as immigration, sexuality, women in politics, the BRCA gene test, online harassment and so many others.  It hit very close to home so many times, to the point that it made me cry (granted, I cry a lot during TV shows/movies, but still) and I felt so grateful. The three main characters all now feel like role models to me, they were so empowering and I aspire to be more like them. I cannot wait for season 2 to start airing this June. I'd definitely say that The Bold Type is my favourite currently airing show so far this year!

TV SHOW // Parks and Recreation (NBC)


Last, but not least, I started watching Parks and Recreation not even three weeks ago, even though I had said I wouldn't start anything until I was done with my master's thesis. Oops. As you're reading this, I'm on the fifth season and I hadn't binge watched any TV shows that fast since Gilmore Girls. Anyway, Parks and Rec is set in Pawnee, Indinana, and follows the team from the Parks and Recreation department (duh) on their adventures. I will confess that I did start watching it because Aubrey Plaza and Chris Pratt were in it, but I accidentally fell in love with the show and there is no coming back. I'd rather watch it than read apparently?! It's funny, always makes me feel good, has relatable characters and I would almost move to Pawnee to work in the department by day and be a Mouse Rat groupie by night. *starts singing The Pit like there is no tomorrow* I'll buy the DVDs to rewatch at some point, because I won't be ready to say goodbye when I'm done... 



L O O K I N G  A H E A D


I am so ready for June. In a week, I'll have turned in my master's thesis for real, then will go on a little vacation with my family in the south of France, my boyfriend is also coming back from Sweden. It's gonna be a good month.

Here are some things I'm excited about:
> TV shows: The Bold Type season 2 and Poldark season 4 will start airing in June, I couldn't be happier!!
> Movies releases I'm interested in: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Love, Simon (those two are finally coming out in France!), Ocean's 8, Jurassic World: Falling Kingdom (yeah, it's just for Chris Pratt, his daily Jurassic World Lego stories won me ever and I shall miss them).
> Books releases: A Thousand Perfect Notes by C.G. Drews, A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir, My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton and Jodi Meadows, A Thousand Beginnings and Endings edited by Ellen Oh, and So Close to Being the Sh*t, Y'all Don't Even Know by Retta.



What was the best book you read in May? 
What are your new favourite things in general?


I hope you had an amazing month in May and that June will treat you well.

Lots of love,
Lucie 

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

All of This Is True by Lygia Day Peñaflor // Review


Hello, beautiful people!

A few months ago, Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books contacted me and other French bloggers to know if we would be interested in doing a blog tour for All of This Is True by Lygia Day Peñaflor, where we would send each other the ARC week after week, until it got back to Marie, and of course, as I'm typing this today, I said yes. It's been a wonderful experience and I can't thank you enough for this, Marie. Anyway, today is my turn to share my review on this book and let me tell you: I adored it. There are so many exciting reviews coming up in the next few days, so go and check out all of these lovely ladies' reviews while you're at it!




All of This Is True by Lygia Day Peñaflor

Published: May 15th 2018 by HarperTeen
Genres: young adult, contemporary
Number of pages: 432

Goodreads summary: Miri Tan loved the book Undertow like it was a living being. So when she and her friends went to a book signing to meet the author, Fatima Ro, they concocted a plan to get close to her, even if her friends won’t admit it now. As for Jonah, well—Miri knows none of that was Fatima’s fault.


Soleil Johnston wanted to be a writer herself one day. When she and her friends started hanging out with her favorite author, Fatima Ro, she couldn’t believe their luck—especially when Jonah Nicholls started hanging out with them, too. Now, looking back, Soleil can’t believe she let Fatima manipulate her and Jonah like that. She can’t believe that she got used for a book.

Penny Panzarella was more than the materialistic party girl everyone at the Graham School thought she was. She desperately wanted Fatima Ro to see that, and she saw her chance when Fatima asked the girls to be transparent with her. If only she’d known what would happen when Fatima learned Jonah’s secret. If only she’d known that the line between fiction and truth was more complicated than any of them imagined. . . .




MY THOUGHTS 
"That's what Fatima said about her novel: you hope that you can reach a few readers here and there, that your message will speak personally to somebody. But you can never know the true impact." 
I received an Advance Reader Copy as part of a French ARC Tour of All Of This Is True organised by Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books in exchange for an honest review. 

I hadn't heard about All Of This Is True until Marie started to organise this ARC tour, but when I saw a glowing review by Adam Silvera and that it was about "Four YA-obsessed teens befriend their favourite novelist. What happens next will shock you.", I knew I needed to add this book to my TBR, because it seemed like quite a different contemporary novel and it intrigued me. 

All of This Is True is told through different formats, such as interviews, novel excerpts or diary entries, Lygia Day Peñaflor did a fantastic job at switching between thoseWhen I read novels that use this type of narrative, it often takes me some time to get used to it and that was the case once again, but once I got passed through, I couldn't stop reading this novel, I was completely engrossed and had to know what would happen next. Writing in different formats doesn't always work, but in this case, everything flowed together so nicely, it made the book even more addictive and I was so impressed, because it must be quite complicated to write all those layers. 

I can't say much about the plot, considering it has this huge mystery aspect to it and you won't have all the pieces of the puzzle until the very end, but it was so gripping and thrilling. This novel relied a lot on psychology, even talking about scientific papers on the subject at some point, and it was utterly fascinating to me, as I think figuring out the psychology of a character is quite complicated, but the author did it in such a clever way. It kept me on the edge of my seat and I read it in under 24 hours, because I needed to know the truth. I had guessed some of it, but when I realised everything, I was a bit shocked considering I had no idea, at first, that the author would go this way. 

As the book is told in different formats, we get the points of view of several characters. At first, it was a bit hard for me to distinguish them all, but once I did, it was very interesting because I didn't know which one I could "trust". There are different sides to a story and All Of This Is True showed that: it was up to the reader's interpretation to figure out what he thought of the characters. I really understood all their points of view and related to all of them at different levels. They were all way more than met the eye at first, complex and so flawed. Some things they did were very disturbing at times, but it made sense considering their different situations, so that was realistic. 

Moreover, this novel had a big focus on toxic relationships. For a few months now, I've been thinking about the messages I wanted to be passed through YA literature and talking about toxic relationships was something I really wanted to read about. In All Of This Is True, you find such dynamics, considering it's about teenagers who befriend their favourite author, who is six years older than them. Before I talk about their relationship with this author, I have to say that even them didn't have great relationships with each other, their friendship felt a bit shallow and they were ready to give up on each other so easily, but what happened also brought some of them a bit closer, in the end. It really showed that friendship isn't easy, neither is finding people who will understand you. 

Because the characters admire Fatima and she's older than them, they would do anything to please her and they believe she is superior to them. It was a very interesting aspect of "stan-culture*" and how you could be ready to do anything to please one of the persons you admire the most and that had always seemed unreachable. You don't know this person, you could totally be wrong about them, and yet.. When you get the chance to be close to someone who means a lot to you, who somehow changed your life without you knowing their true selves, you can behave differently than with someone you would mean in class, or in a café, or something. 

Throughout the whole book, Fatima becomes more and more important into the lives of those teenagers, without them realising how toxic she is for them. I don't want to reveal too much, but Lygia Day Peñaflor used a phrase that resonated with me to explain those types of relationships, for I've had such a relationship in the past and I would have wanted to realise sooner what it really was. Because of that, I think that All Of This Is True depicts toxic relationships in a realistic way and shows the reader all the negative aspects of that, because while you get the points of view of the teenagers, you see them realising the flaws of this relationships and I hope it could help some people recognize the signs of such relationships in the future. 

*According to the top definition in the Urban Dictionary, the word "stan" is Based on the central character in the Eminem song of the same name, it is an overzealous maniacal fan for any celebrity or athlete. 

I also made an aesthetic for this novel, as I've been doing for all the books I read this year, so I thought it would be the best time to share it!



Overall, I adored All Of This Is True: it is told in interesting formats, has fleshed-out characters and is trying to get through such important messages. I really want to read more contemporary novels that talk about such things and I will be sure to keep an eye on what Lygia Day Peñaflor will write next. I tried not to say too much about the plot, but there were some aspects I really wanted to talk about it and I'm glad I got to do so.



Are you planning on reading this one? 
What was the last contemporary novel that really impressed you?


Lots of love,
Lucie