Sunday, June 25, 2017

The Sun is also a Star


Being an immigrant is hard, what's more to say when one is born in a country that people still sees you in colour instead of your nationality. No matter how much you love your country, sometimes the people in it can put your spirits down. 

The Sun is also a Star by Nicola Yoon tackles that issue, an illegal immigrant, an Asian born into a western country how different it is for the both of them and what happens when they meet. This is my first attempt of this author as her debut book was greatly raved about and also the movie was just released not too long ago. An author who so quickly have a movie based on her debut book is surely one good writer or so I expected. I have to say after reading quite numerous amounts of contemporary in the young adult category I was not amazed or captured by this book. In my honest opinion the spark just isn't there for me but I appreciated the messages that was highlighted. 

Bringing forward the issues of migration, it is tough when parents make the decision to move their children from their home country to somewhere new and then when there's so much to offer, moving them back again. The female characters feels that she will be isolated going back as she no longer understand the culture of her home country yet not accepted in America where she's loving currently. There is much to lose for her and while trying to sort her problems she met the male lead. He is lost as whether to live up to his parent's expectation or to live his own dreams. Being the Asian in America, his parents gave up much to move and all they want is to see their children succeed.

We all know sometimes it doesn't end well as Daniel is struggling to make a choice. When he first met Natasha, she caught his attention and soon he is pursuing something that is out of the norm for him. Their relationship is a fast pace one and I think it developed in a quite reasonable way, I appreciated that it wasn't some insta-love that I'm reading even though everything happened in the time span of a day. Both characters are unique and realistic when it comes to the circumstances that they grew up in. I enjoyed reading about their past and their interactions with their family. I guess that is the part which impressed me.

The other thing unique about this book is apart from having the POV of the main characters, other characters who cross their path have a small story of their own to tell. I enjoy how the characters interact with each other, how their fates intertwined and affect each other. This is the unique part of the book.

The flow and pace of the book is good, everything happens at great timing. I did not think that the twist and turns were shocking at all, just mediocre and predictable. Overall I like that in a span of one day these things could happen but then again this is fiction. I did not fell in love with this book hence I felt that if I missed out on this book, it would not make a difference in my book reading journey. I probably have to read her debut book to have a better judgement of her writing. This was just an okay book for me, I would not recommend if you are a reader who wants more emotions.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

By Your Side



When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn't think things could get any worse, But that's before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her. Autumn doesn't know much about Dax except that he's trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he's not exactly the ideal person to be stuck with. Still, she just keeps reminding herself that it is only a matter of time before Jeff, her almost-boyfriend, realizes he left her in the library and comes to rescue her.

Only he doesn't come. No one does.

Instead it becomes clear that Autumn is going to have to spend the next couple of days living off vending-machine food and making conversation with a boy who clearly wants nothing to do with her. Except there is more to Dax than meets the eye. As he and Autumn at first grudgingly, and then not so grudgingly, open up to each other, Autumn is struck by their surprising connection. But can their feelings for each other survive once the weekend is over and Autumn's old life, and old love interest, threaten to pull her from Dax's side? - excerpt from book

By Your Side by Kasie West is a young adult contemporary. Never judge a book by its thickness as this was quite a surprise for me thinking it'll be that typical girl meets boy romance. The summary of the plot was about two teenagers being trapped and something would happen. There is more of course, a heartfelt message about the foster system, about perception and judgements and also dealing with anxiety. 

I did not expect a young adult romance book to have such serious topics injected and it certainly gave the characters some flare. I enjoyed how we get a glimpse of the female lead's past that relates to her influenced perception of the male lead. It was crucial to know how she used to think and how it would change along with the plot. Having their own personal problems yet trying to live life as normal as they could, these two young leads have quite strong personalities that makes their interaction fun to read about. As the individuals that they are, it was realistic for them to react the way they did.

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