Books I Read in February 2019

Books I Read in February 2019 | Book Reviews by Anika May | The Sun is Also a Star, Holding on to the Universe, The Woman in the Window, I've Got Your Number | Books

Happy March 🙂 We’re back with the book reviews! February was a pretty good reading month for me. Despite it being the shortest, I completed four books and feel happy with this month’s choices. Some of them stand out in my memory more than others, but I’m definitely glad I got to tick a couple off my list.

Books I Read in February 2019 | Book Reviews by Anika May | The Sun is Also a Star, Holding on to the Universe, The Woman in the Window, I've Got Your Number | Books

The Sun Is Also a Star

Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

Rating: 4 Stars

Would I re-read? Yes.

I didn’t think I was going to like this book. But, I really liked this book. Natasha is such a lovely character, and makes me want to learn way more about physics and the universe. I was drawn to her character simply because she’s Jamaican like me, but she’s so much cooler than me, I loved her! Daniel is a really sweet character and their relationship was so beautiful to follow.

The book takes place over the day they meet, and it’s so well written, you really get a sense of who these characters are within the first few chapters. What I really loved was the different points of view from major and minor characters. Whether it’s the security guard, Irene (what a doll), or family members, it was really interesting to read.

There were times I got a little frustrated, which is why this is a 4-star for me.

I definitely consider this book a page-turner. I didn’t take long to read, and I felt like every part was necessary. Although it’s not the most amazing book I’ve read, it’s definitely up there with some that made an impact. There are questions in there that make you step back and think, which is really nice for a YA novel.

Nicola Yoon is a phenomenal author, her style of writing is inspiring and moving. She has a magical way of describing thoughts and feelings. My heart was fully invested in this book, and I felt every emotion the characters did.

Also, the day I finished this, I found out they’re making a film based on the book, staring one of my favourite actresses (from Black-ish and Grown-ish), Yara Shahidi.

Books I Read in February 2019 | Book Reviews by Anika May | The Sun is Also a Star, Holding on to the Universe, The Woman in the Window, I've Got Your Number | Books

Holding Up the Universe

Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed “America’s Fattest Teen.” But no one’s taken the time to look past her weight to get to know who she really is. Following her mom’s death, she’s been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby’s ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for every possibility life has to offer. In that moment, I know the part I want to play here at MVB High. I want to be the girl who can do anything.

Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin, too. Yes, he’s got swagger, but he’s also mastered the impossible art of giving people what they want, of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a newly acquired secret: he can’t recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He’s the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything, but he can’t understand what’s going on with the inner workings of his brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don’t get too close to anyone.

Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game—which lands them in group counseling and community service—Libby and Jack are both pissed, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world, theirs and yours.

Rating: 4 Stars

Would I re-read? Probably not.

“YOU ARE WANTED.”

I liked this book more than All The Bright Places, but again it was Jennifer Niven’s brilliant writing that compelled me to give this story a try.

One thing I will say about this book, is that Libby really inspired me. I have struggled with body image issues and anxiety for as long as I can remember, and the way Libby thinks and handles situations is pretty cool. Her determination to do anything, and allow her love for dance or anything else trump anything evil someone could say to her.

I found myself wanting to be as free-spirited and strong-minded as she is. She’s not super human, she still has her flaws, her anxieties and her fears, which I think makes her a lot more realistic.

I though Jack was really interesting, and although he fit into the typical cool-guy-who-has-a-secret type, he was still interesting to read about, and I learned quite a bit about prosopagnosia. It’s a neurological disorder I didn’t know many struggle with, but it was fascinating to see things from Jack’s point of view. He has a lot on his plate which is stereotypical of a character like him, but there’s a depth there that makes him likeable.

This book is a nice reminder that you are loved and that you are worthy, no matter what you look like or where you came from. And I’m all for books that do this.

Books I Read in February 2019 | Book Reviews by Anika May | The Sun is Also a Star, Holding on to the Universe, The Woman in the Window, I've Got Your Number | Books

The Woman in the Window

What did she see?

It’s been ten long months since Anna Fox last left her home. Ten months during which she has haunted the rooms of her old New York house like a ghost, lost in her memories, too terrified to step outside.

Anna’s lifeline to the real world is her window, where she sits day after day, watching her neighbours. When the Russells move in, Anna is instantly drawn to them. A picture-perfect family of three, they are an echo of the life that was once hers.

But one evening, a frenzied scream rips across the silence, and Anna witnesses something no one was supposed to see. Now she must do everything she can to uncover the truth about what really happened. But even if she does, will anyone believe her? And can she even trust herself?

Rating: 4 Stars

Would I re-read? Maybe, but I know the ending.

This was my first real thriller/suspense book and I quite liked it. The one thing that drew me to this in the first place was all of the buzz it was getting, and I understand the hype. It was definitely a suspenseful book, and although I thought I would finish it quicker, I did find myself wanting to know what’s going to happen next.

Anna is a pretty cool character, and found her quite interesting as an intelligent but self-destructive agoraphobic. She’s self-aware, but at the same time so naive. I must admit, I got frustrated with the timing, some chapters seemed unnecessarily long.

Finn’s writing is what saved this book for me, the story was good and I didn’t predict the ending (until about 3/4 through), but Finn’s ability to paint a picture with words make this story so vivid for me. I was feeling almost every emotion Anna felt, and getting all worked up as the story progressed.

I wouldn’t read it again, but I think Finn has astounding talent for creative tense and twisted situations, but making them realistic and highly authentic.

Books I Read in February 2019 | Book Reviews by Anika May | The Sun is Also a Star, Holding on to the Universe, The Woman in the Window, I've Got Your Number | Books

I’ve Got Your Number

I’ve lost it. 🙁 The only thing in the world I wasn’t supposed to lose. My engagement ring. It’s been in Magnus’s family for three generations. And now the very same day his parents are coming, I’ve lost it. The very same day! Do not hyperventilate, Poppy. Stay positive 🙂 !!

Poppy Wyatt has never felt luckier. She is about to marry her ideal man, Magnus Tavish, but in one afternoon her “happily ever after” begins to fall apart. Not only has she lost her engagement ring in a hotel fire drill but in the panic that follows, her phone is stolen. As she paces shakily around the lobby, she spots an abandoned phone in a trash can. Finders keepers! Now she can leave a number for the hotel to contact her when they find her ring. Perfect!

Well, perfect except that the phone’s owner, businessman Sam Roxton, doesn’t agree. He wants his phone back and doesn’t appreciate Poppy reading his messages and wading into his personal life.

What ensues is a hilarious and unpredictable turn of events as Poppy and Sam increasingly upend each other’s lives through emails and text messages. As Poppy juggles wedding preparations, mysterious phone calls, and hiding her left hand from Magnus and his parents . . . she soon realizes that she is in for the biggest surprise of her life.

Rating: 3 Stars

Would I re-read? No.

This was a good book. It wasn’t the best piece of chick lit I’ve ever read and it certainly wasn’t the worst. I’m a Sophie Kinsella fan so when this popped up as a recommended read, I was happy to give it a try. The plot is a really fun idea, and I loved the relationship between Poppy and her friends. Everyone needs a group of good people like that in their life. She thinks like every girl I’ve ever met which added a nice level of humour to the story.

I liked that this book had a solid plot and a couple of twist, but I found myself thinking about how unrealistic so much of it is. Maybe it’s because I would handle certain situations differently to the protagonist. I didn’t love Sam or Magnus, which made the book hard to keep following.

Overall, this wasn’t mind-blowing but it didn’t feel like a waste of time. It was just OK. It lacked a little in the romance department, I like a bit of cheese and this book didn’t have much of it. I like cute moments and I was disappointed to find very little of them. I found myself wanting to hurry and finish the book because it just felt static, the story wasn’t going anywhere until about 300 pages in. By that point, I’m committed.

I wouldn’t reread but the writing was wonderful as always in this classic rom-com style of book.

Books I Read in February 2019 | Book Reviews by Anika May | The Sun is Also a Star, Holding on to the Universe, The Woman in the Window, I've Got Your Number | Books

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