Wacky Wednesday: 34 Pieces of You by Carmen Rodrigues

One cool thing about this book is that something that's mentioned in it actually makes it onto the cover. I won't explain, but if you catch it, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about. :)

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):

There was something about Ellie... Something dangerous. Charismatic. Broken. Jake looked out for her. Sarah followed her lead. And Jess kept her distance, and kept watch.

Now Ellie’s dead, and Jake, Sarah, and Jess are left to pick up the pieces. All they have are 34 clues she left behind. 34 strips of paper hidden in a box beneath her bed. 34 secrets of a brief and painful life.

Jake, Sarah, and Jess all feel responsible for what happened to Ellie, and all three have secrets of their own. As they begin to confront the darkest truths about themselves, they will also find out what Ellie herself had been hiding all along...


  • Ellie's 34 notes. They were very insightful and packed punches, giving readers insight into her character even though she's dead, telling a story of their own. I read the notes without any break in between and enjoyed how they flow together.
  • Details of this story were well written. For example, the sisters with popcorn flakes left in their teeth, the bubble in Sarah's chest, etc. The details of this story were most definitely better written than the overall novel was.
  • Ellie's controversial character. Controversial characters are always more realistic than perfect, angelic ones, and Ellie especially is a good example of how to write a controversial character well.
  • The sibling relationships presented in the novel. They were essential to the story, and it was nice to be able to read about them.


  • Jess and Ellie's 'relationship' developed a little weirdly. It read more like they were together because they were thrown together by the author rather than an actual connection.


  • The different characters may have been delegated different points of view, but they never really seemed to sound any different from each other. Each voice blended into the next and each chapter sounded like it was all coming from the same person.
  • The overall story didn't really seem to have a point. Ellie had some secrets, but the focus seems to be shifting all over the place throughout the novel, making it hard to focus and truly hone in on what her secrets are.
  • While sibling relationships were really important to the novel, the presence of romantic relationships really overshadowed these sibling relationships. Every character was presented with romantic relationship issues, and while a few of them in a novel is reasonable, to have every character involved in such complicated romantic relationships was a bit much.
  • The ending doesn't really feel like an ending. There isn't really a finality to the novel, and felt like it would've been better wrapped up with a few more pages.
Giving this book a rating is difficult because I loved the details that were weaved into the novel so much. However, because of the overall picture, I can only give it 3 jellyfish. I'd be interested in reading something else by this author in the future for sure.

Thanks for stopping by, and happy reading!

Wacky Wednesday: Finale by Becca Fitzpatrick

I believe this might be one of the first non-general fiction novels I review on my blog, so hopefully I'll make this good!

Summary (as seen on Goodreads)
Will love conquer all?

Nora and Patch thought their troubles were behind them. Hank is gone and they should be able to put his ugly vendetta to rest. But in Hank's absence, Nora has become the unwitting head of the Nephilim and must finish what Hank began. Which ultimately means destroying the fallen angels - destroying Patch.

Nora will never let that happen, so she and Patch make a plan: lead everyone to believe they have broken up, and work the system from the inside. Nora will convince the Nephilim that they are making a mistake in fighting the fallen angels, and Patch will find out everything he can from the opposing side. They will end this war before it can even begin.

But the best-laid plans often go awry. Nora is put through the paces in her new role and finds herself drawn to an addictive power she never anticipated.

As the battle lines are drawn, Nora and Patch must confront the differences that have always been between them and either choose to ignore them or let them destroy the love they have always fought for.

  • Nora loses someone she is close to who she really cares about. At least not all of the characters have plot armor.
  • The tensions in the story were interesting and waiting for the conclusion was enjoyable. Watching the characters navigate that difficult path built anticipation for how the characters were going to survive, or not.

  • Vee being a Nephilim as well as a cool twist, but at the same time, it came out of nowhere. It seemed like a really convenient way to finally introduce Vee to what was going on, and even when she was, she didn’t really get to do much to help. With Detective Basso, it was equally confusing to find out her was an archangel, and felt like a detail placed for the sake of convenience.
  • Marcie’s death seemed a bit strange. It would’ve been interesting if she’d known she would have a shorter life and had ended up sacrificing herself for the battle. Instead, she gets away with what she did, just like she always does, which was frustrating.

  • Nora just doesn’t come across as a very intelligible character. It seems like she constantly needs Patch to rescue her, or Scott, or some other boy. Why can’t Nora just learn to take care of herself? Because she’s human and weak? I wonder what that reminds me of.
  • Patch and his dirty jokes are just totally unnecessary. Especially ending the book with that didn’t come across as the best choice. It was frustrating to read.
  • Speaking of Nora and Patch’s relationship, what is with their dependency on each other? Yes, it’s healthy to care about someone you’re dating, but to the extent that they do when they literally can’t go on without each other? Especially since the book basically mentions that this entire series only takes place in six months, this seems a bit unreasonable to me.
  • Nora and her devilcraft addiction was very confusing, and the way that plot arc ended was very confusing and didn’t really add to the story as a whole. It made it feel like it was just extra words on the page to meet a quota.

Admittedly, I mostly read this book just to wrap up the series, which I started a while ago. I gave it my best shot, but I can only muster up two jellyfish for this one.

Thanks for tuning in! Please feel free to leave book recommendations and give your thoughts below!

Wacky Wednesday: You Look Different in Real Life by Jennifer Castle

It feels nice to be reading again. Enjoy another book review!

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):

For the rest of the world, the movies are entertainment. For Justine, they're real life.

The premise was simple: five kids, just living their lives. There'd be a new movie about them every five years, starting in kindergarten. But no one could have predicted what the cameras would capture. And no one could have predicted that Justine would be the star.

Now sixteen, Justine doesn't feel like a star anymore. In fact, when she hears the crew has gotten the green light to film Five at Sixteen, all she feels is dread. The kids who shared the same table in kindergarten have become teenagers who hardly know one another. And Justine, who was so funny and edgy in the first two movies, feels like a disappointment.

But these teens have a bond that goes deeper than what's on film. They've all shared the painful details of their lives with countless viewers. They all know how it feels to have fans as well as friends. So when this latest movie gives them the chance to reunite, Justine and her costars are going to take it. Because sometimes, the only way to see yourself is through someone else's eyes.

Smart, fresh, and frequently funny, You Look Different in Real Life is a piercing novel about life in an age where the lines between what's personal and what's public aren't always clear.

  • Justine is a very complex MC who is clearly not perfect, and in an odd way, that makes her all the more likable. Perhaps it makes her easier to relate to.
  • The uncertainty of the ending. It doesn’t wrap up neatly into an ending storyline, in a way. All the characters have come so far, but have so much further to go. Leaving that open to interpretation makes this story beautiful because the characters’ stories are going to go on, and this installment is a continuation of two previous ones.
  • The basic premise. This book would be such a great movie. The author managed to execute this very visual story in a relatable way, which is a huge challenge, so kudos to her.
  • The fact that there was rock climbing in this novel is a huge plus. :)
  • Felix and Keira’s nationalities. It would’ve been nice to have their cultures play more into the story, but it’s a good start.
  • The characters are very dynamic, and it was very interesting to watch them all grow and change.

  • Felix having a secret was an interesting part of the story, but the content of it and the way it came out were not executed in the best way. It was impossible to foresee the secret, and while a good writer surprises their readers, it felt like there was a lack of buildup toward its release.
  • The way homosexuality was dealt with in the story felt like it was just inserted in there for the sake of having it mentioned rather than it being part of the characters’ lives. This is a pattern that happens in other YA novels as well. However, the inconclusiveness of what the character decides to do is nice, and refreshing and different.

  • Both of the other girls start off having issues with Justine. Although a lot of the book focuses on the renewal of Justine and Rory’s friendship, most of it feels like it focuses on her relationships with Nate and Felix, which made the book a little more romantic-based than need be.
  • Nate’s relationship with Justine. It kind of feels forced, and there’s something about its build up that’s a little off. The end result is fine, but the gradual steps to getting there jump too quickly. It might’ve been nicer to have a different relationship pan out while leaving Nate and Justine’s more hanging in the balance.
  • The writing wasn’t always as tight as it could’ve been. It wasn’t poorly written, but it also doesn’t really show off the author’s voice or come across as especially unique.
  • Some cliché phrases get said throughout the course of the novel, which makes it not as powerful as it could’ve been. There is a lot to think about and ponder upon reading it, but the cliché phrases make it harder to grasp despite overall big picture themes that aren’t as cliché.

Rating this one was tough, but I’ll give it 4 jellyfish. Many elements of it were great, but there’s something missing that can’t be pinpointed that doesn’t make this quite a 5-star novel.