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Welcome to my Blog

Professional Reader
My name is Michelle and I am a grad student, a marketer, and a bibliophile. The main point of this blog will be book reviews, but I may add in more as I go.

Please see the side for my recent posts and please see the top menu for all of my reviews.

Please see below for various affiliate/discount links. Some of these I get commission on, some are only discount codes (discount codes will be in quotes)


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Fugly by Claire Waller

Please note, I received a copy of this e-book and exchange for an honest review. Thank you NetGalley!

Please be aware that this review will contain spoilers.

One of my favorite things about this book, was that I was actively trying to predict what was going to happen next, and I was usually wrong. For the longest time, I was convinced that “Tori” would end up being Amy. Honestly, I’m still kind of surprised that it wasn’t. And then when it became extremely obvious that it wasn’t going to work out, I thought it might be Brat. I will say that I am not happy that we never found out who “Tori“ really was.

Everyone knows that cyber bullying and trolling is bad. Everyone knows that the people who do it, are usually just trying to make themselves feel better about their own lives. But what we don’t see you, is why they are feeling the way they do. In the case of Beth, she was bullied and her real life. She was very insecure about her weight and she was made fun of frequently for it. Even just the side long glances where she felt judged, hurt her every time. In her mind, she felt that it was a certain type of people that were targeting her, and she wanted revenge. While this absolutely does not make it OK, she didn’t realize the effect that she could be having on the people she was targeting. She didn’t realize that she was doing essentially the same thing that she felt others were doing to her. Until Tori happened.

I love the redemption aspect of this book. I love that Beth grew to realize that what she was doing was horrible. I do not like the fact that it took such a Trumatic event for that to happen, but I am glad it finally happened. And that is very realistic. Until you actually experience it in real life, your actions seem like you won’t have any consequences to deal with.

I think this is a great book for teens to read to try to get a better grasp on how bad trolling is. While it may just seem like fun and games, what they are doing has real consequences and is basically destroying somebody’s life.

Other great aspects of this book, in my opinion, include the relationships. I loved that there was never a big deal on what sexuality somebody was. It didn’t matter that Amy liked men and Beth liked women. I also liked the forgiveness. I loved that Amy was willing to give birth so many chances because she saw the good in her. I also loved the Beth didn’t give up on Amy despite everyone telling her to leave her alone.

This was a great standalone book that covered a very tough topic. It was very engaging and extremely well written.

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These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling

***Spoilers ahead***

This was a great choice for my Book of the Month Young Adult box! I initially chose it solely based off of the title and the cover. But I am very glad with my decision.

This was a very quick and engaging read. The story was captivating and made it difficult to stop even when I needed to. Hannah story seemed, at first, like a typical teenagers. Teenage angst, rebellion, trying to find your place in the world… of course with the added twist of being able to do magic and be a witch.

While I did understand the need to focus the book somewhat on her relationships, I did find that to be a little excessive for the plot of the story. I would have preferred to learn more about what being an elemental which means, as well as the history of her coven, and her life in general.

I definitely did not feel that her dad‘s death needed to be part of the book. It felt that it was thrown in there to be the “token” death of the fight. I was also disappointed with who the antagonist turned out to be. I did not see it coming, which was a nice surprise, but I really wish that it had been someone else. Actually, the person that I was hoping it would be would have made the story a bit more interesting, although at the same time it probably would have been more foreseeable.

Overall, I greatly enjoyed the book and greatly enjoyed Hannah‘s character. I enjoyed watching her relationships, both romantic and platonic, grow throughout the book. I hope to see more in the future with Hannah and everyone else.

Thank you to Book of the Month for this book! If you have not already checked out the subscription box, I highly highly recommend that you do so!

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Permanent Record by Mary H.K. Choi

“Wait, who are you, man?” -Ross

This is a question that everyone has been asked at some point in their life. Not necessarily by someone specific, but at least by themselves. And at different points in life, that answer changes.

Is Pablo a college dropout? Is he the boyfriend of a teen celebrity? Is he a social media sensation? Or is he a normal young man, trying to find his place in the world?

Pablo has a situation that many young people find themselves in, massive student loans, credit card debt, and no strong sense of what they want to do with their lives. He dropped out of school, is working a minimum wage job, and has no strong ambitions on what to do as of yet. In walks Lee, who is very successful, and suddenly Pablo knows what he wants to do….he wants to be with her. As with every relationship, the curtains open, the magic wears off, and you discover the truth about each other….and whether or not you can handle that. And you find yourself in the meantime.

I enjoyed reading Pablo’s journey as he starts taking his life seriously and learns to ask for help. And that ignoring his problems will not make them go away. Unfortunately, I did find the book to not be engaging and found it very easy to put down. It was well-written, just somewhat dull for me. I would have liked to see more backstory on why Pablo chose the college he did, why Lee became the person she is, and so on. I am curious as to if their relationship progressed as well.

Overall, it was an enjoyable read. Permanent Record was a great Book of the Month Young Adult selection.

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I’ll Be There For You: The One About Friends by Kelsey Miller

At the time, Friends was an incredible advancement in television culture. Even though not every part has aged well, you can still see the cultural advancements where they were. Lesbian wedding, surrogacy, single motherhood, etc. These were not topics that were typically broached in 90s television. Granted, a lot of the jokes are now outdated, and some are now considered offensive, but many parts of Friends still lives on today.

On the air for a decade, with reruns still going 15+ years later, it is rare that you will find someone who has not heard of Ross, Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Joey, and Chandler. This book was a wonderful look into the behind-the-scenes aspect of one of the most popular television shows.

I loved learning that the cast were friends in real life, and not just on the show. I loved that they handed together when it came time to renew their contracts….if one person was fired, they were all going to leave. And that they all stuck together for their pay as well. They weren’t just friends, they were a family.

This book was wonderfully written and extremely engaging. I listened to about 95% as an audiobook during my daily commute and it brought back all kinds of feelings of nostalgia. And as I was reading this, iTunes released a deal of the entire series of Friends for only $30-$40 (I can’t remember the exact amount now). Needless to say, I’m rewatching for the umpteenth time and loving it.

If you are curious at all about Friends, love the show, or just want to learn some background information on creating tv shows, I highly highly recommend this book!

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Wild Boar in the Cane Field

Before I start into my review, I would like to thank Book Sparks for the opportunity to get a copy of this book and the opportunity to be able to review it.

This book was definitely interesting. Unfortunately, I had a very hard time getting engaged with it. While I did enjoy the story, I found my mind kept wandering and I would have to reread pages in order to remember what I had just read. I greatly enjoyed the dynamics between the different characters. I very much enjoyed the final chapter when a lot of my wanderings were finally answered. However, I do wish that the ending had been different

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Saving Zoë by Alyson Noel

One of my favorite aspects of Book of the Month is that you can add extra books to your monthly box for a very reasonable cost. When I saw Saving Zoë, I knew I needed to add it to my box, and I am so glad I did.

Read along at your own risk for spoilers!

Overall, I was very happy with this book. While it is mostly superficial, it did delve a little into potential dangerous circumstances that surround teenagers: drugs, alcohol, sex, meeting strangers, and all of the risks that go along with these topics. I would have liked to see the book go more in depth into the way Zoë’s life was transformed by these areas, besides the ultimate change that occurred. I also would have liked to see the aftermath of Echo’s life changing after discovering the truth regarding her sister.

I enjoyed seeing the way that Echo realized she was in a relationship because she felt that she should be. Because she felt it was the right thing to do. I enjoyed watching her realize this and then end it when she realized that she did not truly have feelings for the guy. I loved seeing Echo realize that she is her own person and that it is okay to be different from Zoë and that she does not need to follow in her footsteps. The character development of Echo and Marc was also great to see and showed how, realistically, it could happen in everyday life.

The book was well-written and a quick read. I would have liked it to delve a little more into the hard topics rather than staying superficial, but I think it works great for the intended age demographic. I am curious to see how the movie compares to the book! And I am curious to read more books by Alyson Noel.

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Mind Games by Shana Silver

This was such an amazing book!

Read at your own caution for potential spoilers!

Mind Games is a sci-fi book where the main character sells memories. I love the idea that our memories are backed up to a cloud system where we can access them at anytime. Rather than saving photos, you can save full memories instead. To me, this isn’t outside of the realm of possibility, as is the danger that can come with it. If you make the wrong person mad, and they know how to hack, say goodbye to your memories. This creates a huge ethical issue, as shown within Mind Games.

This book keeps you on the edge of your seat and wanting to turn the pages as quickly as possible. Even when I could feel myself wanting to put down the book and do something else, my intrigue in the story wouldn’t let me. I am eager to see if the author has more books and sincerely hope that she does.

Thank you to book of the month for picking a book that I might not otherwise have picked up.

Every month, Book of the Month picks 5 books and you get to choose one. They recently started a Young Adult option as well as the regular subscription.

I signed up to be an affiliate and received a book with a couple extra goodies! Mind Games was the book I chose and I am so glad I did as this was one of the best books I’ve read in awhile!

If anyone is interested in trying out Book of the Month, use this link: https://book-of-the-month.ixmz.net/z5Gym and use the code FLEX to get your first box for only $9.99!

If you are interested in signing up as an affiliate (I got a cookie for doing so! lol) use this link: https://book-of-the-month.ixmz.net/c/1460234/647007/9782