Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland Review

our-chemical-hearts-krystal-sutherlandOur Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland

Publisher: G.P. Putnams Sons Books For Young Readers

Release Date: October 4, 2016

Pages: 313

Summary: Henry Page has never been in love. He fancies himself a hopeless romantic, but the slo-mo, heart palpitating, can’t-eat-can’t-sleep kind of love that he’s been hoping for just hasn’t been in the cards for him—at least not yet. Instead, he’s been happy to focus on his grades, on getting into a semi-decent college and finally becoming editor of his school newspaper. Then Grace Town walks into his first period class on the third Tuesday of senior year and he knows everything’s about to change.

Grace isn’t who Henry pictured as his dream girl—she walks with a cane, wears oversized boys’ clothes, and rarely seems to shower. But when Grace and Henry are both chosen to edit the school paper, he quickly finds himself falling for her. It’s obvious there’s something broken about Grace, but it seems to make her even more beautiful to Henry, and he wants nothing more than to help her put the pieces back together again. And yet, this isn’t your average story of boy meets girl. Krystal Sutherland’s brilliant debut is equal parts wit and heartbreak, a potent reminder of the bittersweet bliss that is first love.

My Rating: ★★★★☆ ½

My Thoughts: Sutherland delivers an engaging and honest tale of first love!

Sutherland brings such life and depth to her characters, which was definitely one of the highlights of this novel!

And through her writing she made them flawed, realistic, and overall enjoyable to read about regardless if they were minor/central characters. All were wonderfully written!

Henry has a core group of friends: Lola & Murray. Quite a central part of this story and through the ups and downs, they are always there to help each other. The strong elements of friendship in this novel was definitely another highlight!

The plot itself is well paced and definitely has elements of mystery to it. I loved the humor weaved into this novel. This book definitely had me laughing!!

It had its dark moments, but Sutherland balanced both humor/wit and serious elements perfectly.

While this novel is tackles a topic I’ve read about in YA Contemporary before :”First Love”, it was unique because its about first love but then again it isn’t! It definitely tackles all the aspects of awkward first love, but centers more about life and personal growth, which I loved!! ❤

Additionally, I loved the aspect of Henry and Grace’s relationship that revolved around Henry coming to understand a universally important message: Its important to love someone for who they are not who you think they are or who you expect them to be.

As for writing style, being in 1st person reading from Henry’s POV not only made Our Chemical Hearts engaging+ a blast to read, but overall delivered a unique voice to this story!

However my only minor issue, was that the ending felt a little rushed!

This novel captured my heart, broke it, but golden seams brought it back together again!! 😍💖✨

Our Chemical Hearts is an unforgettable tale with elements of friendship and mystery that takes the reader on a journey of first love and everything that comes with it!

When The Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore Review

when-the-moon-was-ours-anna-marie-mclemoreWhen The Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie Mclemore

Publisher: Thomas Dunne

Release Date: October 4, 2016

Pages: 240

Summary: To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel’s wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees, and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town.

But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel’s skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they’re willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up.

My Rating:★★★★★

My Thoughts: Magical realism at its finest! With lush prose and phenomenal story telling, When The Moon Was Ours not only captivates but tells a story of identity,family and courage!

There were so many amazing aspects of this book! From the diversity (LGBT, Trans MC, Pakistani + Latina MC) to the wonderful messages of finding one’s self and the importance of family/identity.

Being Latina myself, I am very familiar with the legend of La Llorona (in this novel are the Bonner Girls) and I absolutely loved  reading McLemore’s take on it! 💖💖

The novel’s writing style and characters are truly unforgettable! I cannot count the number of times I stopped to reread passages! Every page had such memorable and magical quotes!!

Miel and Sam have secrets, but regardless have built a beautiful friendship. They protect each other no matter what. But when the Bonner Girls, who are rumored to make any boy fall in love with them, think Miel’s roses (that grow from her wrist) will keep their influence strong, they threaten to expose Miel + Sam’s secrets to get what they want.

Miel and Sam’s relationship is threatened when the Bonner Girls begin to use Miel’s roses for their own gain and Miel distances herself from Sam for fear that they may no longer be able to stay together.

Originally being Samira, Sam’s mother believes its just a phase, however he’s not so sure. Over the course of this novel, Sam comes to understand who he is and who he wants to be.

Miel fell out of a water-tower as a child and cannot remember how she got there, but knows she can grow roses from her wrist and had a family. She is trying to understand who she is and where she’s headed.

Character development is truly at the heart of this novel, from the Bonner Girls to Aracely, Miel’s caretaker, each and every character changes over the course of this story.

If I could I would give this book millions of stars! This book is truly unforgettable and tackles/discusses so many topics and themes. From LGBTQ to racism, family, importance of culture + identity, and so much more.

When The Moon Was Ours delivers a stunning prose, wonderfully written characters, and an overall plot that is utterly magical! ✨🌙💖

The Female Of The Species by Mindy McGinnis Review

the-female-of-the-sepciesThe Female Of The Species by Mindy McGinnis

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Release Date: September 20, 2016

Pages: 344

Summary: Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it. When her older sister, Anna, was murdered three years ago and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best. The language of violence.

While her crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people, even in her small hometown. She relegates herself to the shadows, a girl who goes unseen in plain sight, unremarkable in the high school hallways.

But Jack Fisher sees her. He’s the guy all other guys want to be: the star athlete gunning for valedictorian with the prom queen on his arm. Guilt over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered hasn’t let him forget Alex over the years, and now her green eyes amid a constellation of freckles have his attention. He doesn’t want to only see Alex Craft; he wants to know her.

So does Peekay, the preacher’s kid, a girl whose identity is entangled with her dad’s job, though that does not stop her from knowing the taste of beer or missing the touch of her ex-boyfriend. When Peekay and Alex start working together at the animal shelter, a friendship forms and Alex’s protective nature extends to more than just the dogs and cats they care for.

Circumstances bring Alex, Jack, and Peekay together as their senior year unfolds. While partying one night, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting the teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.

My Rating: ★★★★☆ ½

My Thoughts: A powerful + important read! Highly Recommend!

Note: This novel discusses rape/rape culture and sexual assault. There is also mention of animal abuse. Be aware if those are triggers for you.

She discusses rape/rape culture honestly + brings up very important topics! Even after closing the book, this book still has me thinking! There is so much to this story from its underlying messages to its complex main characters.

McGinnis writing style is spectacular! She weaves in a lot of symbolism/metaphors + through her writing which connects her 3 POV’s extremely well. Having read/loved her Not A Drop To Drink duology, it was interesting to read this novel and compare from her shift of Sci-Fi Dystopia to Contemporary.

The main characters Alex, Peekay & Jack all had their own POVS and were wonderfully written. McGinnis’s first person POV really brings these characters to life.

Alex gets to know Peekay and Jack over the course of this novel. Keeping herself isolated, she learns about relationships and friendships, and comes to understand how her acts of revenge are affecting her mentally/emotionally. Alex does becomes Peekay’s best friend and it was wonderful to see from her POV, the compassionate/loving side Alex usually keeps hidden, when she begins working at an animal shelter.

Peekay (Clarie) gives the reader an inside look at how female vs. female behavior can be harmful. Throughout this novel, Peekay becomes more aware of how her behavior can really skew her view on others and why its important to change that.

Jack is very much meant to show the reader an inside look at the “boys will be boys” statement. He changes over the course of this novel and begins to take initiative and look at how his behavior could be harmful to women (like Alex and his former girlfriend Branley.) Additionally, through out this novel he tells himself how much he wants to be a better person and really works towards doing so.

While I loved each of the 3 MCs equally, Alex was my favorite. She murders those who commit horrible acts of rape and sets to make things right considering her sister is no longer with her, due to being raped herself. She wants to have close relationships with others, but struggles because of what she’s lost (not only her sister, but also her family which is now broken), due to the dark murders she’s committed.

My only minor issue was the pacing in some parts.

This is a novel that will leave you thinking long after you’ve finished. The raw + poetic writing style keeps you connected to these characters +  gets you thinking about these  important/mature dark topics that are sadly still around us.

An immersive YA Contemporary which handles very tough subjects, but overall delivers a very important discussion of rape/rape-culture.

Walk On Earth A Stranger by Rae Carson Review

17564519Walk On Earth A Stranger by Rae Carson (The Gold Seer Trilogy #1)

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Release Date: September 22, 2015

Pages: 436

Summary: Gold is in my blood, in my breath, even in the flecks in my eyes.

Lee Westfall has a strong, loving family. She has a home she loves and a loyal steed. She has a best friend—who might want to be something more.
She also has a secret.

Lee can sense gold in the world around her. Veins deep in the earth. Small nuggets in a stream. Even gold dust caught underneath a fingernail. She has kept her family safe and able to buy provisions, even through the harshest winters. But what would someone do to control a girl with that kind of power? A person might murder for it.

When everything Lee holds dear is ripped away, she flees west to California—where gold has just been discovered. Perhaps this will be the one place a magical girl can be herself. If she survives the journey.

My Rating: ★★★★☆

My Thoughts: The Gold Rush comes to life in Carson’s YA Historical Fiction/Fantasy mash-up!

Leah/Lee’s 1st person POV really transports the reader to the era of the Gold Rush. Additionally, the wild west elements really show the gritty/strenuous journey of traveling during this time period!

Carson does a fantastic job at slowly weaving in the light fantasy elements (Lee’s gold sensing ability) with historical fiction while still making it an immersive + rich world!

There’s also discussion about women, considering Lee dresses up as a boy for a majority of the novel, with a lot of discussion of how she views herself and begins to question if she should stay disguised or not when she goes to California.

I will admit my rating is low for a few reasons:
1.The pacing was really slow for me + dragged in some parts (mostly on the journey)
2. Lee’s magic isn’t used as much as I expected  + isn’t given much explanation either
3. I wanted more from the plot 

Regardless I will definitely be reading the sequel! The 1st person POV made the novel feel very immersive and I was really able to connect with Leah and her struggles as a character. Her overall character and character-development/growth along the way was the best part of this entire novel. Additionally, the elements of mystery and suspense made the novel fun + enjoyable.

I loved reading how Leah slowly but surely became friends with the people on her journey, considering this takes place over numerous months, it made sense that the development of those relationships took quite some time.

Carson does a phenomenal job at creating the atmosphere/setting of the Gold Rush and weaving in “Wild West” elements and the small hints of fantasy. They all flowed very well together.

Overall an enjoyable 1st book in the trilogy + great setting! While the pacing + plot suffer a little, I’m definitely interested to see where the story goes!

September 2016 Wrap-Up

# Of Books Read: 5

sam-maggs-25-innovators-oct-181.Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors + Trailblazers Who Changed History by Sam Maggs

ARC Review To Come 

Publisher: Quirk Books

Release Date: October 4, 2016

Pages: 240

My Rating:★★★★☆ ½

Overall Thoughts: An inspiring collection of stories that shares + celebrates the amazing  accomplishments of 25 women who, against all odds, changed the world! Highly recommend checking this book out ❤

Girl In Pieces August 302.Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

Girl In Pieces Full Review

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Release Date: August 30, 2016

Pages: 416

My Rating:★★★★☆

Overall Thoughts: After using self-harm to free her of her pain, Charlie wants to start a new life for herself. Handling many tough topics + through a unique writing style, Glasgow’s debut delivers a powerful and inspiring read as Charlie undergoes a journey to put herself back together. Highly recommend!

Stalking Jack The Ripper Sept. 20, 20163.Stalking Jack The Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco (SJTR#1)

*Debuted @ #1 on NYT Bestellers List*

Stalking Jack The Ripper ARC Review

Publisher: Jimmy Patterson

Release Date: September 20, 2016

Pages: 336

My Rating:★★★★☆ ½

Overall Thoughts: This is a dark/immersive mystery that will keep you  turning the page! Maniscalco’s 1st person POV brings the characters/world of Victorian England to life. Audrey is such a delightful + engaging main character that really makes you feel connected/part of this mystery trying find Jack The Ripper! Highly recommend!

Unscripted Joss Byrd August 234.Unscripted  Joss Byrd by Lygia Day Peñaflor

Unscripted Joss Byrd Full Review

Publisher: Roaring Brook

Release Date: August 23, 2016

Pages: 224

My Rating: ★★★★☆ ½

Overall Thoughts: A delightful coming-of-age story about a young actress who is trying to find herself in the bustles of Hollywood. So many topics are discussed in this novel + characters/character development are the heart of this moving contemporary.

Crooked Kingdom Sept. 27, 20165.Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo (SOC #2)

Crooked Kingdom Spoiler-Free Review 

Publisher: Henry Holt &Co.

Release Date: September 27, 2016

Pages: 546

My Rating: ★★★★☆ ½

Overall Thoughts: Bardugo masterfully concludes her Six Of Crows duology! With Six of Crows, the world wasn’t as developed as I had hoped. However, the world of Ketterdam in Crooked Kingdom is greatly expanded + developed! Along with the world-building, character development is a huge part of this novel. This finale as with SOC, is filled with an exquisite writing style that really transports readers to this magical world + non-stop action and plot will keep you reading to the very end!

Additional Posts From This Month:

Book Bytes I #6

A Torch Against The Night Playlist + Kingdom Of Ash And Briars Playlist

September 2016 Book Releases

I Believe In A Thing Called Love by Maureene Goo Cover Reveal

Supporting Diversity In YA {Book Blog Discussion}

Kingdom Of Ash & Briars by Hannah West ARC Review {August 2016 Wrap-Up}

Top 10 Tuesday: Podcasts

What Books Did You Read This Month? 🙂

 

Unscripted Joss Byrd by Lygia Day Peñaflor Review

Unscripted Joss Byrd August 23Unscripted Joss Byrd by Lygia Day Peñaflor

Publisher: Roaring Brook

Release Date: August 23, 2016

Pages: 224

Summary: Hollywood critics agree. Joss Byrd is “fiercely emotional,” a young actress with “complete conviction,” and a “powerhouse.”

Joss Byrd is America’s most celebrated young actress, but on the set of her latest project, a gritty indie film called The Locals, Joss’s life is far from glamorous. While struggling with her mother’s expectations, a crush on her movie brother, and a secret that could end her career, Joss must pull off a performance worthy of a star. When her renowned, charismatic director demands more than she is ready to deliver, Joss must go off-script to stay true to herself.

My Rating: ★★★★☆ ½

My Thoughts: A heartfelt, coming-of-age contemporary about an up and coming actress who must find herself in all the pressures and struggles of Hollywood.

Joss is a 12-yr. old up and coming actress! She’s had quite a few roles but The Locals is her first big (starring) role!

However, difficulties arise when she struggles with her mothers expectations + to pull off a scene she isn’t sure she can preform.

What really surprised me was Joss’s age, considering this is YA! Regardless, she is a very mature main character with an engaging voice/POV throughout the novel!

I love reading YA books surrounding Hollywood/acting and seeing what happens behind the scenes + getting more background on the movie-making process & receiving tidbits/behind the scenes views at what happens off-screen was absolutely fascinating!

The movie set itself plays such a huge role not only in the novel, but also in Joss’s world/life! Ever since she was little, her mother pushed her into acting and hadn’t stopped since. It was interesting to see how Joss viewed herself (mostly lost/unsure) considering most of her life surrounded cameras, scripts, etc.

There are so many mature themes/topics discussed in this novel and really made it feel so  real! Such as Joss’s struggles/triumphs with dyslexia, her mother Viva not being there for her, + her fears/difficulties in a scene that she is unsure if she can handle.

Because its a huge part of Joss’s life, she is essentially supporting herself and her mother, yet doesn’t get her fair share of the pay check (usually spending it without Joss’s permission)  considering she does all the work and her mother is constantly being strict with her.

As for the plot, it was wonderful! You follow Joss on her latest project making friends, learning more about herself and what Hollywood really means for her. With a little over 2oo pages, you feel so connected to Joss and her struggles & really see the character come to life.

Additionally there is no romance which I loved &  was refreshing to see! The characters/connections Joss has with her mother, cast/friends + crew is the highlight of this novel!

There is a beautiful friendship that develops between Joss & Chris (her on-screen brother) and while its clear Joss has feelings for him + is hesitant to approach him in the beginning, the develop such a beautiful friendship and help each other along the way when they reach difficulties in scenes + issues that arise on set!

I did take away 1/2 a star b/c at moments I did feel the pacing was a little slow + I wish there was more development/moments with Joss&Chris!!

Regardless of those minor issues….

This is a YA Contemporary with so much heart! Character development is at the core of this story and is filled with such engaging characters that will keep you reading, curious to see where Joss’s Hollywood career is headed!

I highly recommend this novel if you’ve read Something Real by Heather Demetrios + are interested in reading a contemporary with a behind the scenes look at the bustles of Hollywood life!

Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow Review

Girl In Pieces August 30Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Release Date: August 30, 2016

Pages: 416

Summary: Charlotte Davis is in pieces.

At seventeen she’s already lost more than most people lose in a lifetime. But she’s learned how to forget. The broken glass washes away the sorrow until there is nothing but calm. You don’t have to think about your father and the river. Your best friend, who is gone forever. Or your mother, who has nothing left to give you.
Every new scar hardens Charlie’s heart just a little more, yet it still hurts so much. It hurts enough to not care anymore, which is sometimes what has to happen before you can find your way back from the edge.

My Rating:★★★★☆ 

My Thoughts:4/4.5!! Still deciding on a rating!

A raw & powerful read about a girl who undergoes a journey to put herself back together.

Charlotte “Charlie” Davis has been through a lot. She’s lost her father, her best friend and suffered from a difficult home life with her mother.

She finds that the only way she can be free of her pain is to self-harm.

Glasgow delivers a raw and powerful debut novel that taught me more about what people who self-harm go through and the struggles/obstacles they can face mentally, etc. when trying to recover.

She doesn’t shy away from difficult subjects/topics and in turn, it really evokes emotion and delivers such a realistic story.

The story starts off with Charlie in a psychiatric clinic where she, along with other women, are being treated due to self-harm. After spending quite some time there, she is able to leave and hopes to heal and begin a new chapter in her life.

This novel shows Charlie’s road to recovery and the obstacles she must face to get there.

The novel is told in a unique first person POV. I will admit the writing took me a while to get used to. It took around 50+ pages or so to get into the writing style and really immerse myself into the story and there were small moments here and there where I felt the plot could have moved a little faster. (Hence the 4/4.5).

Regardless the writing style flows well with the story being told and as the the novel progressed I found myself rereading sentences/passages b/c they beautifully written & evoked such emotion!

There were moments where I felt the topics were too much for me to read personally and had to take breaks while reading the book. But overall it showed me just how powerful Glasgow’s writing was!

The characters themselves are all very well written and have such depth that I could really see these characters through Charlie’s eyes.

The relationship Charlie develops with Riley one of the main characters was done well. I will admit over the course of the story I struggled to connect with Riley’s character and found moments when they faced issues/struggles in their relationship was difficult to read at times.

This novel was Charlie’s journey to find herself and create a new and better life. While I don’t usually read novels with subjects such as this one, I found many underlying messages that people could relate to who not only self-harm, but also may feel alone or unsure of who they are in the world.

2 important message I found throughout this novel were: You are not alone and can always find people who understand & help you. + No matter what difficulties/obstacles you face you can find the strength to keep moving forward.

I also found elements of feminism which was very inspiring! There are moments when Charlie struggles to find her voice + feels powerless but finds a way to speak her mind!

Overall this was a powerful read that deals with a number of tough topics and handles them in a realistic way. It also provides deep and moving messages about hope and putting yourself back together when all seems lost.

Have you read Girl In Pieces or are planning to?

Lets Discuss In The Comments Below! 🙂

 

Hidamari ga Kikoeru by Yuki Fumino Review {Manga Review}

Hidamari ga Kikoeru CoverHidamari ga Kikoeru by Yuki Fumino {1 & 2}

Publisher: Printemps Shuppan’s Canna magazine

Release Date: October 27, 2014 (Volume 1) + May 28, 2016 (Volume 2)

Pages: 493 (1-12.5 Chapters)

Available in English through The Book Depository: I Hear The Sunspot (Vol. 1) & I Hear The Sunspot: Theory Of Happiness (Vol. 2)

Summary: The story starts with college student Taichi, who comes from a not-so-well-off household and is desperately searching for work. He (literally) stumbles across fellow student Kouhei while on a job hunt, and is incredibly enticed by the delicious bento Kouhei has in hand. However, something seems a bit off about Kouhei–and when Taichi consults his friends about it, he gets an answer he really wasn’t expecting: Kouhei is severely hearing impaired.

My Rating:★★★★★

My Thoughts: A realistic story both touching and heart-breaking. It will leave you wanting more once you’ve reached the ending.

I have a different type of review today!

On a manga series that has captured my heart 💕❤️💖

I’ve read a lot of YA and felt it was time to take a quick break and get back into manga, which I haven’t read in SOO LONG!!

My first manga in years was Hidamari ga Kikoeru & it was all kinds of amazing!! ❤

The story starts off with college student Taichi searching for a part-time job. With no luck, he makes his way towards his college campus just in time for lunch and meets Kouhei after stumbling into him.

Kouhei is in search of a note taker due to having difficulty hearing and Taichi gladly agrees. In return for being note taker, Kouhei promises Taichi free lunches and the two become friends.

It is revealed that Kouhei lost his hearing around middle school when he got a terrible fever and throughout the rest of middle school + high school found it very difficult to connect with people and make friends.

This manga brings up hearing disability and really takes time to discuss it!

While I personally don’t have much knowledge on people who are hearing impaired/deaf, I  felt it taught me a lot and showed me the struggles one can face and how it could significantly impact the important build blocks of one’s social life (making friends, etc.)
+ I felt so bad for Kouhei because he just gave up almost on making friends entirely 😭 and was so lonely, of course until Taichi came along.

There are moments when Kouhei can’t hear what people are saying to him or when he asks people to repeat what they said and sometimes their response is “it was nothing.” 

To him its a big deal, because he wants to be a part of a conversation or just feel included.

Sadly Kouhei discovers his hearing is getting worse and he could possibly end up losing his hearing all together!

Wanting to avoid hurting Taichi if he does end up losing his hearing, he slowly begins to drift away from him.

It broke my heart!! 💔😭

Luckily, by the end Kouhei explains why Taichi is so important to him & they kiss!!

💕❤️💖🎉

Now onto Volume 2: (which separately is 4.5 )

During a club day on campus, Taichi tells a new student Maya to watch where she is going, when she steps on his flyers accidentally. Not knowing she is hard of hearing as well, he tells her to watch where she’s going.

Soon after, Taichi realizes she is there to see Kouhei and both Maya & Kouhei click instantly.

After one of Taichi’s friends recommends they go with a big group of friends to a local restaurant, Taichi becomes somewhat jealous of being ignored by Kouhei all night + of Maya becoming friends with him.

Shortly after, Taichi gets convinced from people around him that he doesn’t need to be with Kouhei anymore because he has Maya + Maya herself doesn’t necessarily like Taichi either and that he should leave Kouhei alone (he’s loud and talkative compared to her who is more soft-spoken).

As for Kouhei himself, he gets convinced that he’s holding Taichi back & doesn’t deserve his friendship.He then admits to himself that having Taichi as his friend makes him stress over the littlest things, considering they haven’t talked in a while.

+ in between chapters moments of Spring Break are shown & further reveals why Taichi + Kouhei don’t really hang out much anymore (+ it complicated their relationship!)

As time goes on, Maya begins to question whether Kouhei likes someone (b/c she somewhat has a crush on him, but overtime gets the idea that he doesn’t like her back.)

Taichi becomes unsure of what he wants to do with his life and what he wants to study. By chance he meets Maya’s Uncle and realizes he runs a company with a variety of services for the hard of hearing/deaf.

After bringing up valid points in a discussion, he gets offered a job at the company. Convinced he’s where he should be, he considers dropping out.

Before Taichi drops out, he still wants to make time to hang out w/ Kouhei.

However before they meet up, Taishi sees Maya and notices she’s having a hard time understanding what her childhood friends are saying and he helps Maya avoid the situation.

In between this scene, we come to understand why Maya didn’t really like him and why she really wanted to be friends w/ Kouhei (b/c she saw herself in him and understood his struggles).

Kouhei + Taishi meet up once more and Kouhei admits that Taishi taught him to be a better person, enjoy life, and understand other people.

Wanting to get it out of the way, Taishi tells him he’s dropping out.

They hug one last time, Kouhei signs something for Taishi and leaves.

——–
Its been 6 months (now winter) since Taishi started working at his new job and he hasn’t seen Kouhei since then.

Both are unsure how to reconnect their friendship after so much time apart.

Taishi  gets convinced that Kouhei has a girlfriend now (which ends up not being true!)
He sees Maya and she tells him that he still hasn’t admitted to himself that he loves Kouhei. He’s assigned to drop something off and sees Kouhei after so long. ❤ ❤

They begin to talk and catch each other up on whats been going on in their lives.
Taichi then comes to understand what Kouhei signed for him all those months ago (not his name as he believed, but “LOVE”)

He runs off after coming to realize what Kouhei had meant, then a truck begins driving by & Taichi is about to get hit.

Kouhei luckily is there to help and they finally admit their feelings for each other after so long. + admit how much they missed each other ❤ ❤ ❤

I absolutely loved this manga start to finish!  I will admit I did cry a couple times but overall this story is filled with such well developed characters and brings up discussion about the hard of hearing/deaf with, to my knowledge very well and taught me a little more about it.

I love that Taichi & Kouhei got their happy ending and finally admitted to each other how they felt. I’m just so sad its over b/c I would have loved to read more about these characters!! ❤ ❤

My only minor issue is that volume 2 felt somewhat dragged in places but rushed in others and I wish there was more moments with Taishi & Kouhei!!

The story is beautifully written and the art is very well done. At its core this manga is about friendship and not giving up when things seem tough. 

Overall this manga was spectacular, I highly recommend it!!

Giant Days Vol.2 by John Allison Comic Review

9781608868049_08482Giant Days Vol.2 by John Allison, Lissa Treiman, Whitney Cogar, & Max Sarin (Giant Days #1)

Publisher: Boom! Box

Release Date: April 12,2016

Pages: 128

Summary: Susan, Esther, and Daisy started at university three weeks ago and became fast friends. Now, away from home for the first time, all three want to reinvent themselves. But in the face of hand-wringing boys, “personal experimentation,” holiday balls, nu-chauvinism, and the willful, unwanted intrusion of “academia,” they may be lucky just to make it to spring alive. Collects Issues #5-8.

My Rating: Full StarFull StarFull StarFull Starhalf star--Book Blog

***SPOILERS AHEAD***

My Thoughts: What I really enjoyed about Vol. 2 was that, while Vol. 1 focused on the fun adventures they had when college first started, now it focused more on course work/academics & relationships, especially from Susan & Esther and how they work them out!

With this vol. you can definitely see they always looked out for each other & helped when issues came up  .

I will admit with this volume taking a more serious route+ the new art style 1/2 way through, it still didn’t feel the same as Vol. 1 w/ all the fun adventures etc.

But overall it was a great addition to the series & I can’t wait to see what happens in Vol. 3!

Giant Days Vol.1 by John Allison Comic Review

Giant Days Vol.1Giant Days Vol.1 by John Allison, Lissa Treiman, &Whitney Cogar (Giant Days #1)

Publisher: Boom! Box

Release Date: December 1, 2015

Pages: 128

Summary: Susan, Esther, and Daisy started at university three weeks ago and became fast friends. Now, away from home for the first time, all three want to reinvent themselves. But in the face of handwringing boys, “personal experimentation,” influenza, mystery mold, nuchauvinism, and the willful, unwanted intrusion of “academia,” they may be lucky just to make it to spring alive. Collects issues #1-4.

My Rating: Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarFull Star

***SPOILERS AHEAD***

My Thoughts: I’ve been waiting for months to read this first volume ever since I added it to my TBR last November!

Finally I found it at my local library and it was amazing!!

I read this whole volume in one sitting!  It was that good!!

The comic starts right when these 3 girls have just become close friends in their first year of college!

From page one you get to know each of these girls & their unique/contrasting personalities, but once together you truly see they are the best of friends!

I loved that with each chapter, it was like watching an episode of a fun TV show!

I don’t want to give much of the plot away, b/c I think its best if you go in not knowing what to expect! But you can expect tons of fun/crazy adventures from the beginning!

If you love friendships/girl power or want to read an fun and relatable coming-of-age/ college adventure I highly recommend Giant Days!