4 stars · Dystopian · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Mini Review: Thunderhead by Neil Shusterman

This sequel did not disappoint. There continues to be great perspective and things to ponder. The “journal” entries in this one are the thoughts of the Thunderhead. It was really interesting to see the rationale for some of the things in its world.

Here is a  summary from Goodreads:

“Rowan has gone rogue, and has taken it upon himself to put the Scythedom through a trial by fire. Literally. In the year since Winter Conclave, he has gone off-grid, and has been striking out against corrupt scythes—not only in MidMerica, but across the entire continent. He is a dark folk hero now—“Scythe Lucifer”—a vigilante taking down corrupt scythes in flames.

Citra, now a junior scythe under Scythe Curie, sees the corruption and wants to help change it from the inside out, but is thwarted at every turn, and threatened by the “new order” scythes. Realizing she cannot do this alone—or even with the help of Scythe Curie and Faraday, she does the unthinkable, and risks being “deadish” so she can communicate with the Thunderhead—the only being on earth wise enough to solve the dire problems of a perfect world. But will it help solve those problems, or simply watch as perfection goes into decline?”
There are multiple, in depth storylines to follow about the main characters from book 1 as well as a few more.

The complexity of this world and how well it is put together continues to amaze me. I loved learning about it’s intricacies throughout the book, woven into the plot.

I don’t how else to describe it without taking the magic of the discovery away. I loved it just as much as I did the first book, and can’t wait to read the next one. I would highly recommend if you enjoyed Scythe.  I gave this book a rating of 4 stars.



4 stars · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Review: Renegades by Marissa Meyer

This. book. was. so. cool! I was surprised just how much I loved it. Superheroes or super villains have been overdone in a lot of YA in the last few years, but these characters felt fresh. I enjoyed learning about their powers, but also their lives and personalities. The people in this story is what brings it to life, not their support power. 

Here is a brief summary from Goodreads:

The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies — humans with extraordinary abilities — who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone… except the villains they once overthrew.

Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice — and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.”

There is a great discussion throughout the book. Which is better for society, a dictatorship or anarchy? We get a good look at both sides of the story and why each is preferred by different characters.

I equally loved all the characters. We get to see Nova’s renegade team in person, and through Nova we get to know the remaining anarchists as well. We also get to know about 2 council members through Adam.

Every character had it’s place, and it’s reason. They all felt like they belonged and had a purpose for being in the story.

The ending was a satisfying conclusion while still foreshadowing what’s to come in book 2. It didn’t feel like a cliff hanger, and I’m glad. Also, it is a duology. I’ve found myself enjoying duologies more and more lately. It seems like so many trilogies lately are forced into 3 drawn out books that would have been so much better succinctly in 2.


I gave this book 4 stars, and I would highly recommend this book, and can’t wait to read the sequel!

4 stars · Nonfiction · Young Adult

Nonfiction: Eating Mindfully for Teens by Susan Albers

published April 1, 2018; 184 pages

This is a great book on mindful eating! I definitely appreciated some of the tips as a 20-something adult, and I know I would have appreciated it as a teen or beginning college student. The author’s experience working with teens shows in the writing. She knows her audience. While she does include examples from both male and female teens (and could benefit both genders), the book is definitely geared toward a more female audience.

The book is broken down into four sections: mindful eating, mood, mindset, and motivation. She addresses strategies for eating in the moment, gauging and being aware of hunger, emotional eating and strategies to cope with it, how mindset can effect eating and how to rephrase thinking positively, and more. Everything is broken down into easy, doable exercises. While I personally found the most value in the first two sections, I can see how the latter two will benefit some teens.

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone, adult or teen alike, who is interested in a simple, easy to understand way to get better at mindful eating, gauging hunger, and/or avoiding emotional eating.

4 stars · Nonfiction

Nonfiction: One Dish Vegan Cookbook

First of all, there are no pictures in this cookbook. At all. Not one besides the cover. That was a big disappointment right off the bat. That said, there are still some great recipes in here.

There are a number of sections: soups, salads, chili, stir fries, pastas (and sauce), and oven bakes. Most recipes are made in one pot, but in some cases the base (like rice or pasta) is made on the side.  Continue reading “Nonfiction: One Dish Vegan Cookbook”

4 stars · Dystopian · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Review: The Diabolic 1 & 2 by S.J. Kincaid

Book 1: Published Nov 1st, 2016; 416 pages

Nemesis is a Diabolic, a creature trained from birth to be a guard and protector for her owner Sidonia. When Sidonia is summoned to the capital as a war prisoner, the family sets out to find a way to send Nemesis in her place. Continue reading “Review: The Diabolic 1 & 2 by S.J. Kincaid”

4 stars · Dystopian · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Review: Scythe by Neal Shustermann

Published Nov 22nd, 2016; 435 pages

(The sequel was just published Jan 9, 2018. I haven’t read it yet, but I’m super excited!)

I loved this book! Taking place in the future where the world’s problems are solved, including death, scythes were formed to keep overpopulation at bay. But while corruption in the world is no longer an issue, factions of belief have started to rise in the scythedom.  Continue reading “Review: Scythe by Neal Shustermann”