Girl Out of Water by Laura Silverman (eARC Review)

Publishing: May 1, 2017
Publisher
: Sourcebooks Fire
Page Count
: 320

**I was provided with an eARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!**

I found out about this book through rather unfortunate events occurring in fall/winter last year when some Neo-Nazis decided to troll Laura Silverman for absolutely no reason at all and started to give her book 1-star-ratings on Goodreads. As terrible as those events were, I was glad to see the book community rally together for her and I am also very glad that it lead me to discover Girl Out of Water for myself.

This is the perfect summer read, even when it’s not summer. Silverman has a way of just really making you feel like you are right there with the character. I could almost smell the salt of the ocean breeze or feel the sweat of the Nebraska heat without ever thinking that there was too much description. So, even when I didn’t agree with every choice Anise made, I was with her in the moment no matter what. Anise is definitely a flawed person, but I could understand her and even relate in most moments. While I am in no way as athletic as her, I get the level of passion she has towards surfing. And while I do not have this close knit group of friends in my current geographical location, I went through similar difficulties with having to adjust to the distance between me and people I cared about more than once in my life. She makes mistakes, but you know that she is never intentionally out to hurt anyone.

I think one of the things I appreciated most about this book was how much it was about family, the one you are born into and the one you choose for yourself. It’s a theme I am often missing in my YA books, because whether parents or other family members are there for us or not, they always shape us and our youth. So, to see the struggle and the love that both come with this topic just made my heart sing. And it’s not like there wasn’t still room for other things, such as the really amazing love interest. Lincoln totally won me over with his self-confidence, charm and genuine interest and care for the people around him. And yes, also his dimple!

I didn’t mind the swearing and the underage drinking in this one, but if I could have changed something it would have rather been Anise’s storyline with her mother and her final confrontation with her friends when she got back home. Somehow I felt like there was more build up and nerves from Anise compared to the easy way it was finally resolved. That is such a minor thing though, I still adored this book and would definitely recommend it as a book to pick up this summer.

Fazit: 4.5/5 stars! Great book about family, friendship, passion and finding to oneself!

Are you going to read Girl Out of Water? Have you heard about it?

Trailers You Might Have Missed … (April 24-30)

As you probably heard by now, I was a little sick this past week, but I am feeling so much better now already. I will have all the energy to start off a new month with the right foot. For now, I will still enjoy the quiet though and dive into some trailers!

Movies

Kingsman: The Golden Circle

Honestly, I preferred the original cast, but Taron is the most important anyway.

The Exception

Not my kind of topic … but Lily James and Jai Courtney!

Cars 3

This sounds so serious and sad. How is this a kids’ story?

Handsome Devil

I am not sure how I would feel about having Moriarty as a teacher, you know?

Bad Rap

My documentary of the week.

47 Meters Down

Don’t watch this if you are scared of sharks!!! Also, not even Claire Holt and Mandy Moore together will get me to watch this movie.

TV Shows

Dear White People (Featurette)

I already binged the entire show and I loved it. I can really only highly recommend it, because I laughed, I cried, I’d watch seasons and seasons more of it.

Shadowhunters (Season 2B)

All I saw was Sebastian. They better make him very book-like.

Jamestown

It says “From the Makers of Downton Abbey” but I am missing all the quiet flair of that … this looks way darker and way more primal.

The Handmaid’s Tale

This obviously already premiered and everyone is talking about. Has one of you seen it yet? I am thinking of binging it, but it looks so intense.

That’s all for this week! What are you watching?

Doctor Who: Thin Ice

I know, I’ve been pretty quiet this week, but I wouldn’t miss Doctor Who! Even though it has just been a cold, it has drained pretty much all of my energy and concentration, which is why I didn’t do more than the necessary these past days (hence no new posts and no reading). However, here is my review for episode 3 of series 10 called Thin Ice! Spoilers ahead!

What was it about?

The TARDIS traps the Doctor and Bill in London 1814 to save an extraterrestrial sea creature and some street urchins.

My thoughts?

So, I enjoyed Thin Ice more than Smile, but still did not love it. I think my biggest problem with the season so far is that I really don’t care about the episode plots. It just all feels like “seen it/done it before” and that’s no fun. Just think about it, “extraterrestrial creature gets trapped and the Doctor can’t make the decision for humanity on what to do about it, his companion has to make the tough call”. Haven’t you heard that before? Just to name some recent examples, I will give you Clara and the moon egg story in Kill the Moon, where she has to decide whether to kill the creature that is supposed to hatch from the egg or endanger humanity by letting it live and possibly destroy the moon. I mean, the Doctor almost gave 1:1 the same speech about serving humanity but not making their decisions for them. Or we have Amy and the space whale in The Beast Below, which comes even closer to this because of the nautical aspect of Thin Ice (whale – sea creature … you know?). The space whale was feeling lonely and he didn’t want to hurt anyone, so he didn’t when he was set free just like the creature in this episode didn’t go on to eat half of London. Also, I almost mentioned The Beast Below last week because it again was an episode with a human colonization in space … very similar to what was happening in Smile. I just keep having these constant flashbacks to things I have already seen in Moffat’s time as showrunner.

What I am trying to say here is that the episodes aren’t crafted in a bad way, but their content doesn’t feel original. They follow pretty typical Doctor-Who-standards and are fun to watch, but not if you can still remember almost every single episode from the past 12 years. I feel like I am being especially hard on this season because it’s Moffat’s final one and he didn’t give us any new Who in 2016 because he wanted to go out with a bang … so, I am waiting for that darn bang. And I can see it coming, I know that the vault story is holding something big! (Who else thought of the Master when they heard the knocking?) But until then they really need to step up their game with the weekly topics, because I adore Bill and her interactions with the Doctor. She keeps asking all the right questions and challenges the Doctor while also bringing out his softer side again. I think she’s good for him and she feels like such a natural addition to this world, like she was always meant to fit in. And Twelve said some beautiful, note-worthy and very quotable stuff.

“History is a white wash.”

“I am 2000 years old and I never had the time for the luxury of outrage.”

I loved his speech about being defined as a species by how much we cared for the unimportant people, how much we value those without privilege. The Doctor has never met anyone who wasn’t important, if I recall those words correctly from Eleven’s time, and that is how I like to go through life as well. He was also hilarious when he gave Bill that lecture about diplomacy winning over passion, but then he downright knocked the guy out who insulted her. The Bill-Doctor-relationship already feels very special and I so appreciate that. I want more of that!

So, next week has some House of Anubis vibes for me, but we will see what it holds in store. Maybe I will finally get an episode that doesn’t constantly remind of the past? Oh, but one final thing, a virtual jammie dodger for anyone who can tell me who Pete is!

What did you think of Thin Ice? Did you enjoy the episode? Any and all thoughts are welcome!

Stealing Candy by Stewart Lewis (eARC Review)

Publishing: May 1, 2017
Publisher
: Sourcebooks Fire
Page Count
: 288

**I was provided with an eARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!**

When I first read the blurb, I was quite excited about the sound of Stealing Candy but unfortunately it didn’t hold up to my expectations. Candy is quite the self-centered person. From the first page on, I got a vibe from her like she thought she was better than everyone else and also that she didn’t appreciate what and who she had in her life. All she wanted was to get away from everything, but when her wish comes true, it’s not at all what she wanted … or is it?

To be kidnapped is, I imagine, a very terrifying thing to experience. Candy was scared all of two seconds, but then she was sort of happy? That’s just something that did not go into my head. She had absolutely no feeling for how much danger she was truly in and she basically regarded the whole situation as a fun adventure. All I wanted to know then was “How?!”. In addition to that, she got a closer look at one of her abductors and decided he is hot? I understand how you might hold on to the person that is treating you well in a traumatic situation like this, instead of the other guy, who beat and threatened her. Nonetheless, I would have expected her trust in him to grow over time and not for her to ponder how dreamy he looks and just be okay with how they met and his intentions for their journey. There was just no build up of them getting closer, but rather this immediate attraction, which I found odd considering the circumstances.

There were some interesting elements to this, such as the reason why Levon kidnapped her and how Candy’s famous dad played into all of it. It added mystery to it somehow. The pacing was alright too, albeit a little repetitive in terms of how they progressed on the road.

At the end, there is a change in Candy’s attitude. She opens up to people and accepts them just like she wants to be accepted, but the change was too sudden for me. I couldn’t comprehend where it was coming from exactly, it felt more like she just had to do that to come across as a better person in the end. Speaking of the end, I didn’t mind that it was quite open in terms of the romance. It seemed to be more about where Candy was in life than where she was with her relationship with Levon and I appreciated that.

Fazit: 2.5/5 stars! A difficult protagonist made it hard to relate to what was going on and why she was feeling certain ways.

Have you read any good kidnapping books that weren’t too much like thrillers? Tell me all about it!

Trailers You Might Have Missed … (April 17-23)

How was your week, folks? I have to say mine was very productive in terms of my preparation for my travels and I super happy seen as my departure date is less than a month away. But we aren’t here to talk about that, it’s time for some trailers!

Movies

Kingsman: The Golden Circle

So, the official trailer comes out tomorrow, but I just want this as a reminder for you to know how excited I am for it.

American Assassin

Not gonna lie, I would probably only ever watch this because of Dylan O’Brien.

Wakefield

What is this? Some sort of Gone Boy? I am sure this will intrigue many people, I am just not one of them for now.

The Little Hours

Who on earth thought of that movie? There are like SO many well known people in it, but darn, those who call that movie trash aren’t exactly wrong.

Score: A Film Music Documentary

Definitely the documentary of the week!!

TV Shows

Marvel’s Cloak and Dagger

So, Freeform’s Upfronts were last week and they showed their upcoming shows. Freeform is an iffy topic for me. They are rarely (which means never) faithful to their source material and they make shows like they never even heard of the word subtlety. So much of what they do is so in your face and I just think they could do a lot better with their narration. But then … this is Marvel … they won’t let them ruin their material, right?

The Bold Type

I like the actresses but I am cautious like on the show above.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Season 3)

I am mildly excited about this but then I SAW FREAKING DAVEED DIGGS!!!!

The Keepers

I was going to say this has “Making a Murderer” vibe and just then it pops up on the screen.

Did you see anything you liked? What are you watching?

Doctor Who: Smile

This is actually happening! My weekly reviews of Doctor Who are back! I am not sure how long I can keep this up, with my Canada trip just around the corner and all, but I will do them while I still can. As I did in the past, I will review all episodes right after having watched them, so you get almost like a real time feed of my thoughts (which are subject to change). Today is all about episode 2 of Season 10 Smile and be aware that this is filled with Spoilers!

What was it about?

The Doctor takes Bill on her first adventure to the future, where they immediately run into misguided emojibots which endanger the last hope for human civilization.

My thoughts?

Unfortunately, I have to say that I wasn’t particularly impressed by this episode. It’s absolutely not that it was badly executed or that the message was a bad one. After all these years, the first thing humanity resorts to is apparently still weapons. Do we not learn? Do we not appreciate other cultures and creatures? Why can we never accept indigenous people? Why do we have this need to colonize everything and make it fit us? All valid topics for an episode, but the way it was done was literally something I’ve seen countless times on the show already.

Here are a few examples of what I meant by “I have seen this before”- We have the misunderstood lifeform that actually wants to help people which faintly reminded me of Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead (people getting uploaded in the libarary to be save) and The Girl Who Waited (letting people live out their days in kindness chambers … I mean the robots even kind of remind me of each other …), just that the Vardis actually killed the inhabitants here.

Then we have the age old question, who is actually entitled to the place? Who was there first? Who is allowed to live there? The whole “having to negotiate between humans and race XY” was only recently done in the Zygon Inversion and a while back in the Hungry Earth/Cold Blood. Just that this time it was solved super easily by resetting and wiping the robots memories. Which, by the way, was a different circumstance but nonetheless criticized just last week.

There are a couple things I do like. I quite enjoy how naturally Bill fits into the show, how funny she is and how incredibly smart. I mean, sometimes, I don’t really get her thought process. She questions things that have been unsaid for years and years of this show’s existence, but then she cannot possibly imagine what is in the pods of the human spaceship they built to find a place they could colonize? Weird in my eyes, but nothing too distracting. Bill is amazing and that’s all I need to know for now. She discovers the Doctor and his personality all anew. I love watching that realisation click in a companions eyes when they just know that the Doctor would never leave anyone behind or simply not help. She’s like a gust of fresh air again. Also, does she already have a catch phrase of sorts by saying “like a penguin with his arse on fire” whenever she sees the Doctor run now?

I am also happy about the fact that the vault-scenario is not being forgotten. I am assuming this will the story arc of this season and I sincerely hope that we will also figure out how Nardole (who was delighfully unamused at Bill’s presence in the TARDIS) will figure into all of this.

The way into next episode has already been provided at the end of Smile. The dynamic of that season is pretty interesting so far and I think it’s a decent formula to let Bill see the future and then the past in the next one. Regency England here we come!

What did you think of Smile? How are you liking the season?

#CurrentlyWatching: Class

My love for Doctor Who is no secret and if you’ve known me for a while, you are probably also aware of my adoration for its spin-off series Class! The show premiered in October last year in the UK, however, there is a reason why I chose to talk about it just now. Despite having been really well-received (from what I heard at least), the show just started on BBC America now. The first episode aired last week and from now on it airs every Saturday after the new Season 10 episodes of Doctor Who. The fate of its future and a possible Season 2 (which I NEED) now depends on the American ratings. I am really unhappy with that, because why on earth does it depend on US ratings now to renew a perfectly British show, but whatever. This post is a plea for you to watch it and ensure that Class definitely gets another season!

I want to start off by saying that a lot of small references or certain villains will probably make more sense if you have watched Doctor Who, but it is not strictly necessary to have watched the “parent show” beforehand. The Doctor makes a short appearance in the first episode, but thus far that’s all in terms of crossovers.

The students of Coal Hill Academy once more have to deal with extra-terrestrial threats and the stressful fact of being a teenager at the same time.

Class was created and written by Patrick Ness, a name you will probably have heard in the world of YA books before. I’ve only reviewed one of his books, which you can read here, but when I got news that he would be involved I was excited from the start. Class is a fast-paced show, yet it still manages to get you utterly invested in the fate of everyone. There are so many reasons why I love the show and it’s difficult to wrap my head around where I should even start. So, I am going to do this old-school and make a list:

  • A super diverse cast: We have POCs and people of different nationalities as main characters, we get to see different religions, disabled characters who are not defined by their disability and a canon gay relationship established in the first episode. There’s not just inter-racial but actual inter-species love because of our cinnamon roll alien prince, Charlie. Doesn’t that all sound swoonworthy amazing already?
  • Girls and boys can be friends – and JUST friends at that! The relationship between Ram and Tanya was one of my favourites, because they were so close but it never crossed over in the romantic world. It’s sad how rare that is on TV.
  • Boys get to be vulnerable and girls get to be badass. (I think this is self explanatory. Yay for defying stereotypes!)
  • Family matters! All too often when the teens get to go on adventures, the parents are just sort of … I don’t know, forgotten? Here the parents don’t hinder the action, but they worry and fret for their children. Their presence is at least always there in the back of your mind.
  • It tackles heavy topics with grace, such as homophobia, grief and complex moral questions.
  • Not one character is ignored. They each get their time to shine and it’s so worth it, because there is not a single character I don’t like. The relationships and the group dynamic is just amazing. While the romantic ships feel a bit rushed sometimes, due to the fast pace in general, I never once doubted the friendship and closeness. It just really fits the tone of the show.
  • Pop culture references! Wohooo!
  • Best one-liners on TV! *cough* I don’t like knives *cough*
  • Actually scary villains and a surprise return of an old foe in the end.

See, I am just in love with that show! Please, please tell me what’s not to like about it? I am waiting! Because here I am sitting and just enjoying it all and really hoping that I will get to see more of all those fantastic people. So, go and get caught up on that episode from last week and then tune in live or via the BBC America website for the rest of the season.

Class definitely felt a lot more adult to me than Doctor Who sometimes does. This is not exactly a show for kids, but Patrick Ness himself said that if you are into YA books and can deal with what’s going on there, you will be able to handle the show as well. There’s a LOT more blood and naked skin than in Doctor Who for sure.

Did you watch Class? Are you hoping for another season as much as I do?

T5W: Favourite LGBTQ+ Books

It’s time for Top 5 Wednesdays, a weekly meme created by gingerreadslainey and hosted by Sam @ThoughtsOnTomes. If you want to know more or join as well, just go to the Goodreads group by clicking here. I always decide to do these topics very much at random, but this week is all about our favourite LGBTQ+ books, characters and authors. I didn’t 100% succeed in not repeating authors, but I tried my best, however, I want to add that there’s really a lot of Nina LaCour and David Levithan on my shelf, so choosing one book from them was torture.

What are some of your favourite LGBTQ+ books?

The Librarians and the Mother Goose Chase by Greg Cox (eARC Review)

Publishing: April 25, 2017
Publisher
: Tor Books
Page Count
: 288

**I was provided with an eArc from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!**

If you didn’t know already, The Librarians is a show on TNT (you can find my previous post about it HERE) and this book is sort of like a companion story for said show. In fact, this is already the second book about them, however, I haven’t read the other one yet (as I don’t believe it’s truly necessary to read them in the right order seen as they are closed stories, kind of like episodes).

I want to start by saying that Greg Cox managed extremely well in capturing the voices of the different characters! They feel exactly like the people I saw on screen, as well as their relationships with each other and that’s already something I appreciate very much. Now that might make you believe that you have to watch the show beforehand to enjoy this book, but if you are up for riddles, rhymes and adventuring, I think you can enjoy the book without actually having seen an episode. You might miss a couple references to previous storylines or happenings from the past, but you will still be able to get the general gist of things.

All in all, this was a really fun ride! The whole tale was dynamic and well crafted, although a bit predictable. I found that the switch of perspective became a little formulaic at times, but it doesn’t really take away from the enjoyment. It’s a page turner for sure, simply because you want to know if you are right with your theories or not. I would definitely read more upcoming tales from our Librarians, because let’s face it, you can never have enough Cassandra, Ezekiel and Stone!

Fazit: 3.5/5 stars! Fast-paced adventure!

Do you watch the Librarians? Would you like to read a book about them?

Trailers You Might Have Missed … (April 10-16)

I haven’t been so excited about trailers for a long time. There have been some amazing ones this week and I am so glad I can share them here with you. Those alone have made my week, but I hope yours has been great as well! Let’s get started!

Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

I AM FREAKING OUT SO MUCH!!!! I’ve watched it several times every day since it has come out. I can’t even … This just makes me look forward to Christmas even more.

Thor: Ragnarok

Thor’s unadulterated joy at seeing the Hulk is just the best thing ever!

Atomic Blonde

I still think is going to be a fine visual feast! Also, I saw Til Schweiger and he’s really big in Germany, so I already know he’s going to be a minor bad guy or something in this.

The Hitman’s Bodyguard

Not sure I am into this, but a lot of people are apparently.

Transformers: The Last Knight

Whenever I hear Anthony Hopkins now, I just imagine him coming up with a new narrative for Westworld.

Detroit

I love John Boyega, but I have yet to watch him in a movie that will let him use his actual British accent.

Beatriz at Dinner

This is going to be crazy.

Tramps

I think I’d watch this on a slow summer day.

Step

Documentary of the week.

Take Me

This is weird. Not sure that’s a good thing.

TV Shows

Sense8 (Season 2)

Netflix is just determined to make me cry as of late.

Dear White People

I think this is going to be epic, so why do people insist on making it their goal to get the video to the most dislikes on YouTube. Seriously, grow up!

Doctor Who (What’s to come for S10)

Saw John Simm, didn’t notice anything else anymore.

So, what are you watching? Will you be watching one of the movies/shows mentioned today?