C. J. Lyons – Lifelines (Angels of Mercy #1) | Review

A gripping behind-the-scenes drama of four women who face life and death every day
On her first day at Pittsburgh’s Angels of Mercy Medical Center, L.A.-transplant Lydia Fiore, the new ER attending physician, loses a patient: the Chief of Surgery’s son. Now, to save her career, Lydia must discover the truth behind her patient’s death, even as it leads her into unfamiliar-and risky-territory.
At least she’s not alone. There’s med student Amanda, a sweet Southern belle with problems of her own; Gina, a resident with a chip on her shoulder; and Nora, the no-nonsense charge nurse with a cool head but a fiery temper. Not to mention the paramedic who’d like to try out his bedside manner on Lydia.

★★★★★ 2766206

My mom bought this book last fall and I was eyeing this book since then. In January, I put this book on my TBR, and now I’ve finally read it. I was a bit afraid that I wouldn’t like it, sicne it’s out of my confort zone and I don’t usually read books in this genre, but I was pleasantly surprised. I loved this book so much and now I can’t stop thinking about it.

The premise of this book didn’t sound super interesting to me when I first read the summary and I started reading this book only because of the romance. However, the plot ended up being very interesting ang gripping. I couldn’t put the book down and I just needed to know what happens. Last 50-100 pages of this book were super intense and I barely breathed while reading. The entire book is action-packed and thrilling, and every single chapter ends on a cliffhanger so you just have to continue reading. Plot is set over the course of 5 days, but so many stuff happened. Also, I liked different POVs we got. The main focus was on Lydia, of course, but we got to see Amanda’s, Nora’s and Gina’s POV as well and I liked all the glimpses into their lives and their feelings. Another this I really like is the idea that every book in this four-book series follows one of the girls, and other three are just side charcters. I just find that to be a super cool concept. When it comes to the mystery part, I was not able to guess who is the ”bad guy”, but I loved the way everything unraveled. Also, I think I liked the part after we found out who the ”bad guy” is even more.

Characters in this book are very interesting and very well done. Every single one of them has their own demons and their own story, and their stories all intertwine and make a beautiful background of this book.
Lydia is a very interesting character. She’s been through so much, but she turned out to be very badass and awesome. I liked her so much and her character sounded very believable. She is an awesome doctor, she did solve the mystery and all of those expected stuff, but she was real. She has her demons and she doesn’t always fight them, but she has definitely become one of my role-models. Her relationship with Trey… I don’t know. At first it was very cheesy and kind of discusting, but later I ended up shipping them so hard. The romance in the second part of the book is much deeper and I got to see the connection between Trey and Lydia a lot better. I liked how Trey was the only one who knew what Lydia needed. So, I ship it. Trey as a character is awesome as well, I liked him from the beginning, but I wish we got to meet him a little bit better. However, I really liked his family. Those people are just awesome.
Character which I think I’m supposed to like, but I don’t is Gina. I just couldn’t connect to her. I tried to understand her, I tried to root for her, but I just couldn’t make myself care about her. I did like Nora a lot, especially at the end of the book when she became strong and independent. I’m glad she got over the bad thing that happened to her. Amanda is probably my favourite character, after Lydia. I don’t know exactly why, but I really like that girl. Also, I hope there will be some romance between her and this doctor whose name I can’t remember at the moment. They would be a cute couple and I ship them.

I have no idea what else to say about this book. I love it so much and I can’t wait to read the sequel. Hopefully, that will happen this summer. It needs to happen. Also, I recommend this book!

R. L. Stine – Final Grade (Fear Street #30) | Review

Everyone thinks she killed her teacher
Intense, competitive, Lily Bancroft had good reasons to hate him. She lives to win, and he was about to destroy her dreams. But murder? That was going too far, even for someone as driven as Lily.
She’s innocent. But that hasn’t stopped the whispers behind her back. Or the weird phone calls late at night. Then someone else is brutally murdered and suddenly Lily is drawn into a nightmare she can’t begin to control. Will her final grade be her last?

★★★★☆ images

Getting beck to Stine‘s books is always a great experience for me. Final Grade was no different from his other books – which means it was fun, quick and creepy. I read it in one sitting and it was exactly what I needed in a study break. Premise was interesting, because every single one of his books has a different setting and situations in which characters find themselves are always original and I think that’s awesome, since he wrote A LOT of books.

The plot was not really a hit for me as I hoped it would be, but I enjoyed the book anyway. The only thing that really bothered me was the fact that I knew who is the killer halfway through the book. I read that one sentence in the book and I immediately knew who was it. I even marked it i my book and wrote down that I was 99% sure it’s that person. Aside from that, I really liked the book. It was fast-paced and crazy, we got some creepy murders, and even creepier characters.

Characters were pretty cliche and unoriginal, but I already got used to that in Stine‘s books.
Lily was such an annoying character. She frustrated me so much and I really hated her. She is just so stupid! Yeah, maybe she was smart when it came to school and studying, but I life situations, she was just dumb. But I guess none of the stuff would happen in the book if she was actualy clever.
I obviously can’t talk about other characters in the book because I would spoil everything for you, but I’m just going to say that the person who is the killer and the ‘bad guy’ in this book is just so creepy and I can’t even find a tiny little reason to like that person. It’s all so messed up, and if Lily didn’t annoy me so much, I would actually feel sorry for her.

I hate myself for saying this, but I’m not a huge fan of the writing style. I do enjoy Stine‘s books and all of that, but the style itself is actually pretty cheesy and and very simple. Everything in this book was naive and obvious, but somehow, I always buy it.

To wrap it all up, I just want to say that I’m glad I picked this book up, but I have to admit that younger me enjoyed R. L. Stine a lot more. I guess I’m a bit more mature reader now, but I still like to remember my favourite childhood authors.

Salla Simukka – As Red as Blood (Lumikki Andersson #1) | Review

In the midst of the freezing Arctic winter, seventeen-year-old Lumikki Andersson walks into her school’s dark room and finds a stash of wet, crimson-colored money. Thousands of Euros left to dry—splattered with someone’s blood.

Lumikki lives alone in a studio apartment far from her parents and the past she left behind. She transferred into a prestigious art school, and she’s singularly focused on studying and graduating. Lumikki ignores the cliques, the gossip, and the parties held by the school’s most popular and beautiful boys and girls.

But finding the blood-stained money changes everything. Suddenly, Lumikki is swept into a whirlpool of events as she finds herself helping to trace the origins of the money. Events turn even more deadly when evidence points to dirty cops and a notorious drug kingpin best known for the brutality with which he runs his business.

As Lumikki loses control of her carefully constructed world, she discovers that she’s been blind to the forces swirling around her—and she’s running out of time to set them right. When she sees the stark red of blood on snow, it may be too late to save her friends or herself.

★★★★★ 20929561

When I first saw this book, I thought it’s a fairytale retelling of Snow White. However, it’s not a fairytale retelling at all. I’m not really into crime and detective books, but I was intrigued by the premise of this book and I expected it to be good. And it turned out to be awesome. It was action-packed, intense, thrilling and I read it in two sittings. Once when I started reading, I couldn’t put the book down. Why did I think this was a Snow White retelling? Because this trilogy is also known as Snow White trilogy. Why is it called Snow White trilogy when it’s not a retelling of Snow White? Because the main character is called Lumikki, which in Finish means Snow White. The fun thing is, she doesn’t look like Snow White at all. Isn’t that cool?

I absolutely loved the plot in this book. It kept me at the edge of my seat and I just wanted to find out what was going to happen next. I loved these different POVs because we got to see both Lumikki and the ”bad guys”, but it didn’t really spoil anything and it was done very well. It just managed to confuse me even more and I kept flipping pages to see what happens at the end. And except the main mystery about the money and crime, we also find out that something happened Lumikki in the past, but we don’t know what exactly. It’s definitely something dark and unpleasant, but we get to see only snippets from her ”old” life which only made me more curious and I really want to find out what is it that made her who she is. I think it’s really cool how past and present intertwine throughout the whole book and even though one mystery is solved at the end, there are so many more questions left unanswered and it makes me want to pick up the second book immediately.

I really liked Lumikki. She was fantastic protagonist and this book was so awesome mostly because of her. She was very unique and very different from any other female character I’ve ever read about. She was strong, determined and even though she went through a lot, she stayed cold-headed and brave. All these little details we find out about her through the book were just building one on top of another until we could picture her character and what she may have been through. I could also relate to her and I found out that we are very simmilar in some ways, but completely different in others.
Elisa was my second favourite character. At the beginning she seemed like another shallow popular pretty girl, but toward the end of the book, she went through huge character development and I ended up really liking her. She practically grew up in these five days when book takes place.
Terho was probably my least favourite character and he wasn’t even the biggest criminal and bad guy out of all of them. I just hated the guy. He was selfish, stupid but tried to be presented as a good guy who found himself in something bad. Well, I don’t buy it. It was his decision and he should’ve think about concequences before. Idiot.

I actually didn’t like the writting style very much. I found it a bit amateur and not very special, but it’s a possibility that this is because of translation (the book is originally written in Finish, then translated to English, and then my copy also from English to Croatian) so I wouldn’t be surprised if the writing style got lost in the process. However, I didn’t care much about that because the plot itself was interesting enough. There were some beautiful quotes as well, and this book had some awesome creepy atmosphere. I could easily get into it and finish it in no time.

I would definitely recommend this book to you if you haven’t read it yet. I know that I’ll be reading the next book very soon because I need answers!

Chuch Palahniuk – Fight Club | Review

The first rule about fight club is you don’t talk about fight club.
In his debut novel, Chuck Palahniuk showed himself to be his generation’s most visionary satirist. Fight Club’s estranged narrator leaves his lackluster job when he comes under the thrall of Tyler Durden, an enigmatic young man who holds secret boxing matches in the basement of bars. There two men fight “as long as they have to.” A gloriously original work that exposes what is at the core of our modern world.

★★★☆☆ 5759

I expected a lot from this book, so I ended up a bit disappointed. When I first heard about this book from Catriona (Little Book Owl on Youtube), it sounded like an interesting read so I decided to give it a try. When I read the first chapter I was really intrigued and I was sure that this book was going to be fantastic. But then, a second chapter came and I didn’t like it. The same happened with next chapters. It all just became weird (I usually like weird, but this was too much for me) and I didn’t enjoy it at all. The idea itself was very good and I understand the message this book is sending, but I don’t think the book was done very well.

There was no some particular plot, just a bunch of random descriptions of situations that had nothing to do with each other. Yeah, I understand that it was because the narrator has mental illness so he’s not very reliable, but again, it didn’t work. (For example, in The Shock of the Fall, the narrator also has mental illness and the plot was confusing as well, but there it was done properly and it all worked in the end.) There were, however, some interesting parts which kept my attention, especially at the end when we find out that huge plot twist (which I knew from the beginning because I was accidentally spoiled). It feels like Chuch Palahniuk knew that he wants this big plot twist at the end, but he didn’t knew how to make a story about it. Because twist itself was fantastic and it would also be mind blowing if it was done a bit better.

I didn’t like any of the characters in this book, either. Except for Marla, maybe. The narrator, whose name we don’t know, but at the back of the book (on my copy) the author says that main character’s name is Jack, is so annoying and I couldn’t connect with him at all. Tyler was a bit more interesting, but I still didn’t like him. I didn’t like how the narrator (Jack) was basically opsessed with Tyler (there is a reason for it, though, but still…) and how weird their relationship was. Yeah, it was interesting on some level, but only at times. Marla Singer was an interesting character, and probably the most likeable one, but I still can’t say that I really liked her. One thing I don’t get about her is why she stayed with Jack/Tyler the whole time. I mean, the romance was so not there and it was all just unbelieveable to me.

As you probably noticed by now, I’m not a big fan of Chuch Palahniuk‘s writing style. I find it really confusing and weird, but interesting at times. The message of this book is clear and that’s the main reason why this book got three stars and not less. I can see what the author was trying to do with this book, but I don’t think he succeeded. I don’t think I’ll be picking up another of his books in near future, but never say never.

Therefore, I wouldn’t recommend this book to you, but since there are a lot of people out there who love Chuck Palahniuk and this book, I’m not saying you shouldn’t read this book. Definitely give it a try, you may even like. Just because I didn’t enjoy it, it doesn’t mean someone else won’t. We all have different tastes.

There is also a movie Fight Club with Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter, and everyone (even the author) agrees that the movie is much better than the book. I’m looking forward to watch it.