Friday, 21 October 2016

Review on Nirvana #3 Blinded

When Adele Blackburn's mother dies, she is forced to move away from New York, and start a new life with her grandparents in a commune.Addie soon adapts to her new life, and after spending her whole life in a state of poverty, she is delighted by her wealthy grandparents. However, Addie is constantly thinking about why her mother would run away from such a lovely home to live in the city, and she is determined to find out.

As I loved the first two books in the Nirvana series, I was looking forward to reading this one! Although Blinded is the third book in the series, it is actually a prequel to the first two. I was initially a little disappointed when I realised this, as I adored the characters from the first two books, and was hoping the story would return to them. However, I was excited that this book was going to explain how Nirvana, the commune from the first two books, began.

Blinded follows Addie Blackburn, a thirteen year old girl from Bright Lights City. Addie has never met her grandparents, so when her mothers dies and she is forced to move in with them, she has no idea what to expect. Addie has grown up poor, living in a tiny apartment her whole life, so I loved her sense of bewilderment at finding out that her grandparents live in a mansion. Addie is determined to find out why her mother would leave such luxury behind, which leads her to asking her grandmother about it.

I loved the different point of views that switched between Addie and her grandmother, Margaret. As Addie tells us about her life, Margaret tells Addie about her own childhood. I preferred reading Margaret's chapters at first, as Addie's life seemed a little mundane for the first half of the book. I also felt as if the editing was a little messy in Margaret's chapters. Although it was obvious that most of her chapters were purely dialogue,the quotation marks were constantly being opened and closed, which confused me multiple times and lead me to believe that a character inside of Margaret's narration was speaking. Although I am no editor, I felt as if quotations should have only been used when she started the narration, and when she finished.

I found the first half of the book to be a little slow and was even a little bored. A large portion of the first half of the book focuses on boys, wit both Addie and her grandmother experiencing instalove when they are very young. Instalove makes me cringe at the best of times, and although I realise this book is set in the 1800's where girls would marry young, I felt that it was a little too much. Although it was interesting to discover how Addie's grandparents met, I found it a little cringy how Addie seemingly fell in love with Lucas at first sight. I felt as if Addie had bigger problems than boys, and I was much more interested in her grandfather's work and finding out why her mother left.

The second half of the book was a lot more interesting, and I was anticipating how Margaret's story would end. I loved how the plot ended up resembling a mystery novel, and I was eager to find out who Addie's father was. I was a little disappointed that Addie correctly guessed who her father was early on in the book. However, there were still enough unexpected plot twists to keep me happy.

The reason behind why Addie's mother left was extremely shocking, and I was not expecting such a serious topic to come up in this book. As Addie is thirteen, I presumed that the target audience for this book would be young teenagers, so it took me completely by surprise when such an upsetting and triggering topic came up towards the end of the book. Although this book initially seemed more light hearted than the previous two, the last few chapters made me change my mind. 

The thing I was most excited to find out about was the origins of the eye colour surgeries, as I figured there would be a purpose behind them other than for purely cosmetic reasons. I was disappointed when this wasn't the case, and I was just as confused as Addie as to why her grandfather continue to perform the surgeries despite the complications that could arise. As the surgeries are optional at this point, it made me wonder what changed to make them mandatory in the first two books.

Although I did enjoy this book, I have to say that I preferred the first two books in the series. I loved the fast pace of the other books, and they kept me interested from the start. I also loved how the previous books didn't focus too much on romance, and there was no instalove. Unfortunately this book failed to create much suspense, and I think it was definitely the weakest in the series.

Blinded is now available to purchase!

Friday, 14 October 2016

Author Q&A with Kristy Feltenberger Gillespie

Today I bring to you a Q&A with Kristy Feltenberger Gillespie, author of the Nirvana Series!

Hi Kristy! Tell us a little about Blinded, your third book in the Nirvana series.

When Addie Blackburn’s mother dies, she has no choice but to board a southbound train to her grandparents’ plantation home. In New York, Addie and her mother settled in a cramped one-bedroom apartment, but in Virginia, her grandparents reside in a mansion. Overnight, Addie goes from surviving like a pauper to living like a princess. 

But as grim as life in New York was, at least it made sense,whereas, in Virginia, Addie is left with a ton of questions: Why did her mother flee the plantation in the first place? Why didn’t Addie ever meet or speak to her grandparents before her mother’s death? Who is her father, and does he live on the plantation? And why is her grandfather obsessed with performing eye-color surgeries?If Addie is to remain at the plantation, she must figure out the answers to these questions, and with all the buried secrets from the past, that won’t be an easy thing to do.

   What made you decide to set this book in the 1800s?

The American Civil War era has always fascinated me and I'm a fan of historical fiction, so I thought it would be interesting to write about that time period. Since Margaret grew up on a plantation where her father was a slave owner and seller, she saw firsthand the injustice between wealthy people and poor slaves, which sparked in her a need to bring some kind of equality to the plantation. I also decided to write Blinded as a prequel, since so many readers were asking why Nirvana was started in the first place.

 Would you ever get surgery to change your eye colour?

No! But I did alternate between aqua, violet, and green colored contacts during high school. I also underwent Lasik eye surgery which was one of the best decisions I've ever made. 

Do you think a commune like Nirvana would work in Western society?

 Yes, I do think it would work, at least at first. Then I think most people would crave the outside world too much to remain. 

Would you be comfortable living in Nirvana, or would you, like some of your characters, try to escape?

 Escape! I love travelling too much to reside in one place for eternity. Plus, as a writer, it's important to have experiences and how much could a person experience within a commune (for eternity)? 

 Which of your characters do you relate to the most? 

I'm a combination of Jade and Peaches. Depending on the circumstances,  I can be introverted, serious, and anxious like Jade, and extroverted, silly, and laid back like Peaches. 

 Do you have a favourite place to write?  

Yes, at my desk in my home office. I write nearly every night  after my 14 month old baby goes to bed. With the help of a few cup of coffee, I'm able to write for two plus hours each night. 

As a fellow book blogger, are there any books you'd like to recommend?  

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven, Bone Gap by Laura Ruby,Only Daughter by Anna Snoekstra, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

 I'd like to say a big thank you to Kristy for stopping by and taking the time to answer some questions!

Blinded, the third book in the Nirvana series is available to purchase now! Be sure to also check out the first two books in the series, Jaded and Hunted

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Book Club Picks #4 Cell 7

When sixteen year old Martha Honeydew admits to the murder of local celebrity Jackson Paige, she is immediately arrested and put on Death Row. Martha must spend a week in seven different cells, where her fate will be decided by a public vote. Will Martha be sentenced to death, or will her life be saved by the public?

When I got sent a copy of this book as part of our monthly book club read, I had no idea if I was going to enjoy it or not. It follows Martha, a sixteen year old girl from The Rises, a part of town where the poor reside. Martha is found standing over the body of Jackson Paige, a local celebrity, with a gun in her hand. After admitting that she killed him, Martha is arrested and locked in Cell 1, a series of seven where on the final day, the public decide if she lives or dies. The public are given information on Martha through 'Death is Justice', an extremely biased television show, where the host tries to convince the public that Martha is guilty. The idea of a corrupt government is by far not an original one, as after the huge success of The Hunger Games, dystopian novels were everywhere to the point that I got bored of them. Although I loved the idea of criminals spending just a week behind bars instead of a lifetime, I found the TV show idea to be quite unoriginal, as it just reminded me of Caeser Flickerman's show in The Hunger Games.

The story is told in a unique way, with the narrative constantly changing between tenses, person and point of view. Although I initially found this to be confusing and annoying, I got more used to it as the book progressed. As the majority of Martha's chapters are told in first person, I was extremely confused when a couple of her chapters towards the middle of the book were in third person. I couldn't for the life of me understand why Kerry Drewery did this, and all it did was confuse me further. Overall I think the constantly changing narratives took a little of the enjoyment of the plot away from me.

The plot itself was quite interesting, and I loved how Martha kept going back to explain the lead up to Jackson's murder bit by bit. It gave the story a good amount of tension, and I would have been hooked if some of the plot points hadn't been painfully obvious. There are two big reveals towards the end of the book, both of which I had worked out by the halfway point. As someone who loves plot twists that I didn't see coming, I was disappointed that all my theories turned out to be correct. I did however love how fast paced the novel was in the last quarter, and I was hooked right up until the end. The countdown literally had me on the edge of my seat!

It is clear even in today's society that wealthy people have an advantage in almost everything, so I loved how even though it was up to the public to decide the outcome of the prisoners, they had to pay £5 for each vote. This meant that the rich could vote multiple times, whereas the poor may not have been able to vote at all. I loved seeing the difference in class, with the poor seeing how it was clearly an unfair system, while the rich defended it. As court systems no longer exist in Martha's world, evidence of the crime plays a minimal part in deciding if someone is guilty or not, which has led to a number of innocent people being executed. It was interesting that although evidence existed, it was not made available to the public, and they had to make a decision solely on a corrupt TV show.

The addition of a live-stream from the cells for the public to watch was an interesting idea, but ended up seeming like a boring version of The Hunger Games. I found it strange that there didn't seem to be an audio-feed, and thought it was extremely unrealistic that after finding out Eve didn't think Martha was guilty, she would have been allowed to talk to Martha in her cell with no one listening in on their conversation.

Martha was an interesting and likeable protagonist, and I loved her opinions on the corrupt justice system. I loved that although she is just sixteen, she is trying to make a huge change to the system to make it fair. Although Drewery went down the typical poor orphan girl route, I still enjoyed Martha as a character, and loved watching her come to terms with the murder of her mother.
Eve was one of my favourite characters, and I loved her relationship with Martha. Eve's chapters were some of my favourites, and I loved how she had a terrible personal experience with the justice system, and worked alongside Martha in an attempt at change. Eve was extremely clever, and I loved how although the public initially hated her, she soon had them eating out of the palm of her hand. I also thought Joshua was an interesting character, as although he is a co-host on 'Death is Justice' it is obvious that he has different opinions to Kristina. I loved that he seemed to secretly be rooting for Martha's freedom, and although he wasn't openly allowed to share his personal opinion, he hinted at it.

The one character who I just wasn't drawn to was Isaac. Although he is extremely loyal and kind to Martha, I just felt as if I didn't know enough about him to form a strong opinion on him. Most of the things we learn about Isaac are from Martha, and although she does know quite a lot about him, I felt as if there needed to be a little more information about who he is as a person. Although there are some chapters dedicated to Isaac, they are in third person, which means that we can never learn about him to the extent that we know Martha. I would have loved to have got inside Isaac's head to learn more about his thoughts and feelings. As Isaac is central to the plot towards the end of the book, I felt as if more focus should have been on him throughout the novel, as I feel as if the ending would have had a bigger impact on me if I had more of an attachment to Isaac.

Although I did enjoy parts of this book, to me it felt like another generic YA dystopian novel. It lacked originality, and I don't think there was much content that I haven't already seen something similar to in in other YA dystopian books i've read. If, unlike me, you haven't already burnt yourself out by reading too many dystopian novels, then I think this book could be extremely enjoyable. However, to me it felt as if it was just another textbook dystopian. The fact that it didn't shock me much meant that sadly, the book didn't stand out much for me.

Cell 7 is now available to purchase!

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Review on Three Dark Crowns

When triplets Mirabella, Arsinoe and Katherine are born, their fates are already sealed for them. One Queen must take the lives of her sisters using their gift, and take the throne. However, two of the queens gifts have failed to become apparent, making Mirabella the favourite to win the crown. As Beltane approaches, Katherine and Arsinoe must find a way to hide the fact that they are gift-less, and make everyone believe that they are more than a match for Mirabella

I was so happy when I got sent an arc of this book and couldn't wait to read it! It follows a set of royal triplets who can all potentially become Queen. However, the other two sisters must first be killed before one of them can take the throne. I thought this was a really interesting idea, and I loved that each Queen was meant to have her own unique gift. However, only Mirabella, the Elemental seems to actually possess a gift, leaving Katherine the Poisoner and Arsinoe the Naturalist at a great disadvantage. I adored how they cleverly kept this a secret from the public and their sisters, and found ways to trick everyone into believing their gifts were as strong as Mirabella's.

One thing that I just couldn't decide was who my favourite Queen was! As Mirabella is the strongest, I thought she would use her power to her advantage, and be ruthless, so I was quite surprised that she was the most reluctant to kill her sisters. Mirabella is extremely kind, and I especially loved her relationship with Elizabeth. As this is quite a female driven book, I was hoping that their relationship would turn romantic. As a big part of the book revolves around a number of suitors attempting to court the Queens, I felt as if Mirabella having a secret relationship with Elizabeth would have been a great plot point, so I was a little disappointed when this did not happen. However, Mirabella is involved in a love triangle, which completely shocked me! As anyone who frequently reads my blog will know, there is little I hate more than instalove, so I hated her relationship with a boy who she saves. As I had previously liked this character, I felt betrayed that he slept with Mirabella, and sadly Mirabella lost her status as my favourite Queen.

I have to talk a little about Arsinoe, who soon replaced Mirabella as my favourite. As she is a Naturalist, she is a little more down to earth than her sisters, and spends a lot of time outdoors with her best friend, Jules. The Naturalists were my favourite, and I loved that they had animal familiars. I liked the characters from Wolf Spring the best, especially Jules. Although Arsinoe is Queen, it is Jules who is the most powerful Naturalist, and I loved her strong bond with her familiar. I disliked most of the male characters except for Billy, one of the suitors. I adored his friendship with Arsinoe, and how he was extremely loyal to her. I loved the fact that their relationship never turned romantic, as I feel as if platonic relationships between male and female characters in YA is a rare occurrence.

The Queen who I disliked the most was Katherine, as I felt as if she was the most ruthless and determined to win. She does not seem to care much about the fact that she will have to kill her sisters, and she definitely felt like the villain of the group.

I felt as if the book started out too slowly, and it wasn't until over halfway through that the pace picked up, and I started to enjoy it more. The last quarter of the book was definitely my favourite, and I loved the interactions between Mirabella and Arsinoe. One thing that I found quite odd was that the book is written in third person, present tense, and it took quite a while for me to get used to it. For some reason it feels unnatural to me, as the majority of books I read in third person are in past tense. I felt as if there were too many minor characters, as I was often confused over who was who. I find that too many minor characters often creates a distraction from the main plot, as on several occasions, I backtracked to try to find out the relationship of a minor character to one of the Queens.

As I was confused over the layout of the island, I was extremely happy to discover that the book includes a map! As a lover of Tolkien and C.S Lewis, I do love a good map. I also have to mention how much I love the fact that the book has three different covers, which are all gorgeous and eye catching. There is no doubt that these covers will stand out in a book shop!

Although the slow pace made me initially think I was in for an extremely dull read, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. As someone who is usually pretty good at predicting plot twists, I did not see the ending coming at all, and I am definitely looking forward to reading the sequel!

Three Dark Crowns is now available to purchase!

Saturday, 17 September 2016

Reviewing the Classics #5 The Secret Garden

                                  Goodreads Summary:

Mary Lennox was horrid. Selfish and spoilt, she was sent to stay with her hunchback uncle in Yorkshire. She hated it.

But when she finds the way into a secret garden and begins to tend it, a change comes over her and her life. She meets and befriends a local boy, the talented Dickon, and comes across her sickly cousin Colin who had been kept hidden from her. Between them, the three children work astonishing magic in themselves and those around them


  I remember trying to read this book around six years ago, but for some reason I have up about halfway through, so for this months classic I was determined to finally read the whole thing! The book follows Mary Lennox, a ten year old girl who's parents tragically die due to a cholera epidemic. Mary has grown up having servants do everything for her, so she is surprised when she has to move to Yorkshire, where the servants treat her almost as their equals. Mary soon meets Dickon, her servants younger brother who loves the company of animals, and Colin, her cousin who everyone believes won't live to grow up. When they find a garden that no one has been into for ten years, they decide to work on it and make it their own.

I thought this was a nice light read, and although not much happens in terms of action, I enjoyed this book. Mary starts out as being extremely selfish, and treats the servants more like slaves. She is obnoxious and bratty, but with the help of Dickon, as Yorkshire boy who spends most of his time on the moor, she soon becomes a lot more pleasant. I loved the change in Mary's personality, and how she ends up realising how awful she used to be. I also loved how she made Colin realise he was exactly how she used to be, and helped him to want to go outside and get better instead of laying in bed complaining that he was going to die. Although Colin is spoilt, I did feel sorry for him, as no one seemed to want to help him get better, and everyone had scared him into believing that he was inevitably going to die young and have a crooked back. Colin soon becomes a hypochondriac, and is terrified that he is growing a lump on his back. I loved how Mary was the only person brave enough to be firm with him, and made him realise that the only reason his back and legs were so weak was because he never got out of bed.

Dickon was my favourite character, and I loved how he brought his animals to Colin to show him what he was missing out on by not going outside. I loved the friendships between the three children, and how Mary and Dickon both encouraged Colin to get better. I loved how it showed that although it was up to Colin to make himself better, having good friends who encouraged and supported him was also equally as important to his recovery. As all anyone ever told him previously was that he was too weak and was going to die, he had given up and never even attempted to prove them wrong, so I loved it when he got angry when Ben repeated the rumours, and proved him wrong by standing.

Although I adored the characters, I was often bored by the plot itself, particularly when some of the mysteries were solved quite early on in the book. I felt that once Colin started to get better, there were no longer any surprises, and I ended up getting a little bored of the constant descriptions of the garden. I definitely enjoyed the first half more than the second, as I loved the mysteries such as the cry in the corridor and Mary trying to discover how to get inside the garden. I felt as if nothing happened in the second half other than the children digging in the garden, eating and helping Colin get better. I did however love that Colin achieved his goal in the end and proved everyone wrong! I thought this gave a positive message that just because people tell you that you can't do something doesn't mean they are right. Although this isn't usually the sort of book I would read, I did enjoy it and i'm glad that I finally managed to read the whole book!

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Book Club Picks #3 More Happy Than Not

Along with the lovely Hot Key Books sending us a book each month, we also vote on another book to read that we can choose for ourselves! Last month we chose More Happy than Not by Adam Silvera. 

. After Aaron Soto's father commits suicide, Aaron feels lost in life. After his own suicide attempt, Aaron is trying to get his life back on track, and not allow his past to haunt him. However when his girlfriend leaves town for a couple of weeks, he finds himself spending more and more time with his new friend, Thomas. Aaron slowly realises that he is developing romantic feelings for Thomas, and that his feelings for Genevieve may not be genuine. Aaron finally decides to turn to a Leteo, a place that has advanced technology to the point where they are able to alter memories. Aaron must decide if he wants to forget his fathers suicide and his feelings for Thomas, or to deal with his traumatic past and his sexuality.

 When I first started reading this book, I had no idea what it was going to be about. It follows Aaron, a seemingly average teenage boy from New York who has a girlfriend and a group of friends. However, when he meets Thomas, everything changes. When his girlfriend Genevieve leaves town to work on her art at a retreat, Aaron grows closer to Thomas, and they soon become best friends. Aaron soon discovers that he has romantic feelings for Thomas, forcing him to realise that his feelings for Genevieve may not be genuine. The first half of the book made it seem like the story was going to be a cute gay romance with a side of Sci-Fi. I immediately liked Thomas, and felt that the book was going in the direction of Thomas becoming Aaron's boyfriend. However, the tone of the book completely changes around the half way point, and I realised that my prediction couldn't be more wrong! I always love it when a book takes me completely by surprise, and this one definitely did that.

Although the book initially seems contemporary, it comes with a Sci-Fi twist. As Aaron comes to realise he is gay, and the memories of his father's suicide constantly haunt him, he decides to visit a memory altering facility. I thought this was really interesting, and it made me wonder how many people would actually go through this procedure if it were real. As humans, we all experience grief at some point, which can ruin our day to day lives, so this made me wonder if people bearing huge emotional burdens would risk a procedure like this.

There was a huge plot twist in the middle of the book that I wasn't expecting at all! I loved that it went over the past year of Aaron's life to explain what had happened to him, and how he had got to the point of wanting his memories altered. The book focuses quite a bit on homophobia, and how his father being homophobic towards him at a young age made Aaron believe that being gay was bad, and that the only way he could be “fixed” was to get his memories altered to make him straight. The sad truth is many parents actually do act like Aaron's dad, saying harmful things to their sons, such as telling them they aren't allowed to play with toys that are marketed towards girls. Playing with dolls will in no way make a child gay, as sexuality is not a thing we choose, it is something that we are, and that we have no control over, and I felt as if this book shows that message perfectly.In the end, there is no amount of memory modification that can change Aaron's sexuality, and I loved that he finally came to realise and accept that. Along with loving the fact that Aaron couldn't become straight, I also loved that Thomas explained he couldn't become gay just because Aaron had a crush on him. It showed perfectly that sexuality can't be changed at will, no matter what you identify as.

The ending was both a mixture of happy and sad,and although I felt terrible for Aaron, I was glad that he still had his friends. Genevieve and Thomas are extremely loyal friends, and although Aaron has upset them both, they stick by him no matter what. Besides Aaron and his family, they were the only two characters who I actually liked, as I felt that characters like Colin were only nice to him for personal gain. I honestly couldn't get myself to like Colin, and I was happy that in the end, Aaron wasn't too bothered about romance and was just glad to have Thomas and Genevieve in his life.

This is an important book which focuses on love, friendship, sexuality, guilt and betrayal, and I would honestly recommend it to anyone! It is both funny and heart wrenching, and we definitely need more books like this one!

Follow us at @TheBookClubs to join in with our September read along!

Monday, 29 August 2016

Book Club Picks #2 Nothing Tastes as Good

After Annabel McCormack dies, she is given a mission to help Julia Jacobs, a girl who she remembers being briefly aquainted with at her old school. However, Annabel is not told what she is meant to help Julia with, and assumes it is to help her with her binge eating and weight problem. Annabel soon finds out that there is more to Julia than meets the eye, and her eating problem may be in response to a much bigger problem.

 I have to admit that when Hot Key Books sent us this book, I didn't think I was going to like it. Although I realise talking about mental health problems is important, I have been reading a lot of similar books recently and felt as if I needed a break from this kind of thing. However, despite wanting to read something lighter, I did actually end up enjoying this book a lot more than I thought I would. It follows Annabel, a girl who has died from heart failure caused by her anorexia. Like many girls, Annabel believes that skinny is beautiful, but we can see from the start that she has an unhealthy obsession with it. However, Annabel believes that her way of thinking is right, and although she had been diagnosed with anorexia, she does not believe that there is anything wrong with her. Having an anorexic girl being set up to a girl who binge eats sounds like a match made in hell, and although it definitely was at the start, Annabel slowly realises that she is wrong, and comes to realise that she did have anorexia, and her family were just trying to help her. I loved the redemption that Annabel went through, and although she initially wanted her last message to her family to be angry for putting her into hospital, she ends up writing a heart warming letter to her sister instead. I found this to be extremely sweet, as her sister was in danger of becoming just like Annabel, which she eventually realised wasn't healthy.

I loved the fact that Annabel was the narrator rather than Julia. Annabel is an extremely unreliable narrator, which I found quite interesting, as it is up to the reader to realise how wrong her thoughts are. At the start of the novel, Julia doesn't seem to be particularly bothered by her weight gain, which made me wonder how “fat” Julia actually was. Julia only starts seeing herself as being extremely overweight once Annabel starts planting these thoughts into her head, and Annabel seems to think that anyone who doesn't have their ribs showing is fat. For all the reader knows, Julia could be a perfectly average sized person, but to Annabel that could be seen as huge. Weight gain and binge eating can be dangerous to a persons health, but the way Annabel went about it was very harsh.

Although the final message of this book is that being underweight can be even more damaging than being overweight, and that being fat isn't the worst thing a person can be, I did feel as if the book should have had some sort of trigger warning. Although I have never personally suffered from anorexia, I do have problems with my weight and sometimes feel horribly fat. Even though I realised how wrong Annabel's thoughts were, it is very easy to let a person with such strong opinions start manipulating you into thinking their bad opinions are right, especially if you are vulnerable to that kind of thing. Even as someone who isn't necessarily a vulnerable person, I started feeling guilty about my own weight, even going so far as to feeling guilty about eating a chocolate flapjack as I was reading the book. I felt as if people who suffer from anorexia could be triggered by this book, and that it should have at least had a warning on the back to explain this. The final message is about body positivity and that the most important thing is to be healthy, but I felt as if the lead up to Annabel's realisation of this could be harmful to certain people.

I was shocked by the plot twist in this book, as Julia has much bigger problems which triggered the binge eating to begin with. I loved how although she had been put in a horrible position, she finally realised she was not to blame, and, for lack of better words, called the person out on his shit. I also loved how Annabel was so supportive, and realised that her weight wasn't her main problem after all, and she needed help with a bigger problem.

I genuinely couldn't decide if I liked Gavin or not. After breaking up with his girlfriend, he starts flirting with and kissing other girls as a coping mechanism. I felt as if this was extremely unfair on the girls, as at least two girls who he did this to had developed feelings for him, which he seemed to not care about. Although he was sweet to Julia and seemed to genuinely like her, the moment when he thought she didn't like him anymore, he went back to kissing random girls. The fact that he didn't care that he was upsetting girls made me dislike him, but at the same time I loved that he was there for Julia when no one else was and helped her with the newspaper. Even after finishing the book, I still have mixed feelings about Gavin and still have no idea if I like him.

I feel as if this is an important book to read, and although it is a little difficult to get through emotionally, I am glad that I read it. The fact that it was narrated from the point of view of a girl who had died from anorexia was extremely unique, and the only other book I've read that I thought was a little similar to this was The Lovely Bones. The fact that mental health problems can get to the point of killing a person is barely ever taken seriously, so I felt as if this book helped to see the seriousness of it, and how people with mental illnesses often need just as much help as those with a physical illness

We will be discussing Nothing Tastes as Good along with our other book club pick, More Happy Than Not on 31st August at 7pm! Join in with the hashtag #BCChat