I'm a blogger newbie and I love YA books!

Saint Anything - REVIEW

Saint Anything - Sarah Dessen

Can I just start out by stating how amazing Sarah Dessen is? All of her books are extremely good with not just talking about the love story, but also family, friends, and the main character discovering herself. This is the second book of hers that I have read and it is definitely not the last!



The characters in this book are unforgettable. I love how Layla is obsessed with suckers and French fries, and how Mac is huge on eating healthy. I love how Sydney just wants to be her own person and not follow in another's footsteps. I love all the characters. They're so unique and their own individual selves and I love that!



The storyline was amazing! The way things happened, and the way it all worked out was amazing. Definitely one of the better books I have read. I just can't get over this book! I literally sat on my bed thinking about everything that happened in the book for a half hour before getting my mind off of it and even then! Even then...


Everything Else

There is nothing left to say! The book was amazing. I liked all the quirks and characters and everything else.


I know that this review doesn't go into a whole lot of detail, and it's not one of my best, but I can't even sum it up. You'll have to read it for yourself!

Red Riding Hood - REVIEW

Red Riding Hood - David Leslie Johnson, Sarah Blakley-Cartwright

So, I was not expecting what I read. I have a ton of mixed feelings about this book, but most of them are positive, I think.



Okay, so I kind of liked the characters. I mean, Valerie and Henry and Peter were good characters, but I didn't really like the rest of them. I mean, I liked them in a they-were-important-to-the-story-but-I-didn't-care-for-them sort of way. I liked how strong Valerie was and how she wasn't like all the other girls in the village and I liked how Henry was like a gentleman. Peter was officially one of my favorite characters. He was mysterious, passionate, and caring.



The storyline was creative, but I found myself uninterested at times. Maybe it's just because it's not my type of book, but I mean, overall the storyline was good. Everything that happened, happened for a reason and everything.


Everything Else

I didn't like the end of this book because I felt it left me hanging and left me with too many unanswered questions. Plus, it even says in the back of the book, Is this truly the end of Valerie's story? Go to to find out. Really? Why? Why do I have to look online for the end of a story when it should be in the book itself? I mean, it's interesting that they did that, but still. I want the entire story to actually be in the book, always accessible, you know?


Anyways, overall it was a good book and I gave it four out of five stars.


Movie/Book Comparison - It's Kind of a Funny Story

It's Kind of a Funny Story - Ned Vizzini

My first thought after seeing the movie: It wasn't as different from the book as I thought it would be. It actually was quite similar with some noticeable differences but nothing too big.


The movie didn't have President Armelio in it, which kind of bummed me out, only because I was expecting the whole 'I will crush you in spades' thing. Also, they didn't play cards, but table tennis. Which was fine with me because I personally really like table tennis no matter how much I suck at it!


In the movie, they ended up sneaking out twice in nurse's uniforms which never happened in the book. I'm not sure if I liked this addition or not. I still can't decide. They also had a pizza party at the end instead of a movie. I think I liked this better in the movie just because they had talked about having a pizza party at the beginning, so it seems fitting to have one at the end as a kind of resolution of sorts. Plus, everyone got to see Muqtada come out of the room finally, which was awesome!


The romance between Craig and Noelle was pretty similar to that of the book. There were some minor things, but that's it. I kind of wish they would have put the whole Noelle, emotional scene in the movie, but that's okay.


Overall, I really liked the movie and I loved the book!

It's Kind of a Funny Story - REVIEW

It's Kind of a Funny Story - Ned Vizzini

Words cannot describe how I feel about this book right now! First of all, I watched this movie back when it came out and it's one of my favorite movies! I'll have to watch it again this weekend and then write a comparison piece for you all, but yeah. I had no idea if the book was going to be that good or not. I was setting my expections very high, but I definitely was not let down!



First off, the characters are amazing. Each one has their own unique personality and I love how quirky some of them are. And just the way the story is, it just works! I love Craig's transformation in the story. I like how he also changes love interests due to him changing. It's kind of awesome! I love how Armelio can't stop playing cards, especially Spades (he'll crush you in Spades) and how Humble always gets himself into trouble. I liked Noelle's character a lot as well.



The storyline was really good and I like that it was based off of how long the author, Ned Vizzini, actually spent in the adult psychiatric hospital. Apparently about 85 percent of this was true to Vizzini's story. That makes the storyline amazing just with that.


Everything Else

I just really liked how honest the story was. It really feels like that at times. Especially the Cycling or more commonly known as the snow-ball effect. You start thinking of what you're doing wrong, how much it will affect your day, your week, your month, your LIFE. I was especially sad though to find out that Vizzini had eventually killed himself in 2013, about 7 years after the book was published. To know that he was battling depression just makes the story so real or at least the feeling behind the writing.


Overall, a definite 5-star read! I recommend to anyone and everyone if not just to gain knowledge about depression and other illnesses.

"Oh my God, it hits. I'm in the mental ward."
It's Kind of a Funny Story - Ned Vizzini

- Ned Vizzini, It's Kind of a Funny Story

July TBR + TBR Jar Explained

Red Riding Hood - David Leslie Johnson, Sarah Blakley-Cartwright Uglies - Scott Westerfeld Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 01 - Bisco Hatori Overseas - Beatriz Williams Saint Anything - Sarah Dessen The Impossible Knife of Memory - Laurie Halse Anderson It's Kind of a Funny Story - Ned Vizzini

Hey, everyone! It's officially time for my July TBR! (TBR stands for To Be Read, by the by.) I'm super excited for my list, but I must confess that most of these I drew from my TBR Jar.


A quick note about my TBR Jar. I just updated it a couple of days ago and it includes all of the YA books and Adult books that I own. Lately, I've been reading a lot of library books, so I decided I should mostly read books off my shelf so I can either 1) refresh my memory on the book or series OR 2) read it because I've never read it before and I feel like every book was simply written to be read. In any case, I have chosen the following books from my TBR Jar this month.


1. Red Riding Hood by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright based on a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson. I'm actually really excited for this book just because I saw the movie and I liked the twist they put on it, even thought I don't remember it very well. No worries though. I'm planning on reading it and then watching the movie again!


Valerie's sister was beautiful, kind, and sweet. Now she is dead. Henry, the handsome son of the blacksmith, tries to console Valerie, but her wild heart beats fast for another: the outcast woodcutter, Peter, who offers Valerie another life far from home.


After her sister's violent death, Valerie's world begins to spiral out of control. For generations, the Wolf has been kept at bay with a monthly sacrifice. But now no one is safe. When an expert Wolf hunter arrives, the villagers learn that the creature lives among them - it could be anyone in town.


It soon becomes clear that Valerie is the only one who can hear the voice of the creature. The Wolf says she must surrender herself before the blood moon wanes...or everyone she loves will die.


2. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld. I've read this one before, but it's been so far that I do not remember anything about the plotline! It's the first book in a series and I'm hoping that I like it as much as I remember liking it. I didn't go on with the series the first time, so hopefully it's different this time.


Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can't wait. Not for her license - for turning pretty. In Tally's world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks Tally will be there.


But Tally's new friend Shay isn't sure she wants to be pretty. She'd rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world - and it isn't very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.


3. Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 1 by Bisco Hatori. I've read the first couple of books in this manga series and I love them to death, so I'm ecstatic to be able to read these again. I just can't get enough of these!


In this screwball romantic comedy, a poor girl at a rich kids' school ends up working for the school's swankiest club - and gets mistaken for a boy!


One day, Haruhi, a scholarship student at exclusive Ouran High School, breaks an $80,000 vase that belongs to the "Host Club," a mysterious campus group consisting of six super-rich (and gorgeous) guys. To pay back the damages, she is forced to work for the club, and it's there that she discovers just how wealthy the members are and how different the rich are from everybody else...


4. Overseas by Beatriz Williams. This is an Adult novel and I'm not entirely sure what to make of it, but it should be an interesting read. Let me know in the comments what you think based off of the summary.


When twenty-something Wall Street analyst Kate Wilson attracts the notice of the legendary Julian Laurence at a business meeting, no one's more surprised than she is. Julian's relentless energy and his extraordinary intellect electrify her, but she's baffled by his sudden interest. Why would this handsome British billiionaire - Manhattan's most eligible bachelor - pursue a pretty but bookish young banker who hasn't had a boyfriend since college?


The answer is beyond least at first. Kate and Julian's story may have begun not in the moneyed world of twenty-first-century Manhattan but in France during World War I, when a mysterious American woman emerged from the shadows of the Western Front to save the life of Captain Julian Laurence Ashford, a celebrated war poet and infantry officer.


Now, in modern-day New York, Kate and Julian must protect themselves from the secrets of the past, and trust in a true love that transcends time and space.


The next two books are books that I am reading for the two book clubs I am in on Goodreads.


5. Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen. This book came out this year and I'm super excited to read it, especially since Dessen wrote it. One of my favorite books is by her and I've been wanting to read more of her books. I'm reading this one for my own book club, Book Assassins.


Sydney has always felt invisible. She's grown accustomed to her brother, Peyton, being the focus of the family's attention and, lately, concern. Peyton is handsome and charismatic, but seems bent on self-destruction. Now, after a drunk-driving accident that crippled a boy, Peyton's serving some serious jail time, and Sydney is on her own, questioning her place in the family and the world.


Then she meets the Chatham family. Drawn into their warm, chaotic circle, Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance for the first time. There's effervescent Layla, who constantly falls for the wrong guy, Rosie, who's had her own fall from grace, and Mrs. Chatham, who even though ailing is the heart of the family. But it's with older brother Mac - quiet, watchful, and protective - that Sydney finally feels seen, really seen, at last.


6. The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson. I haven't heard a lot about this book, but I'm still excited to start my first book with the book club, Amazon Editors' YA Book Club.


For the past five years, Hayley Kincain and her father, Andy, have been on the road, trying to outrun the memories that haunt them both. They moved back to Andy's hometown to try a "normal" life, but the horrors he saw in the war threaten to destroy their lives. Hayley watches, helpless, as her father turns to drugs and alcohol to silence his demons. And then her own past creeps up, and everything falls apart.


How do you keep your father alive when death is stalking him? What are you supposed to do when your parent stops acting like an adult? And what happens if a sweet guy who can make you laugh barges his way into your world and for the first time, you find yourself thinking about the future?


And finally the last book is one I have already started and plan on finishing this month.


7. It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini. I saw the movie when it first came out and I really liked it. I'm hoping the book will be even better.


Ambitious New York City teenager Craig Gilner is determined to succeed at life - which means getting into the right high school to get into the right college to get the right job. But once Craig aces his way into Manhattan's Executive Pre-Professional High School, the pressure becomes unbearable. He stops eating and sleeping until, one night, he nearly kills himself.


Craig's suicidal episode gets him checked into a mental hospital, where his new neighbors include a transsexual sex addict, a girl who has scarred her own face with scissors, and the self-elected President Armelio. There, Craig is finally able to confront the sources of his anxiety.


So those are the amazing seven books I am planning to read this month. If you guys have read any of these or want to just talk books, feel free to comment! I'm going to try and post reviews for all of these as I finish them, so look out for those as well!

Get To Know Me - Tag

I saw this tag and thought I would jump on this tagwagon, especially since I'm new to the whole blogging experience.


1. Are you named after anyone?

My first name is Leigh which is my aunt's middle name, and my middle name is Ann which is my mom's middle name.


2. When was the last time you cried?

While reading Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles. That book was so good!


3. Do you have kids?

Not right now, but I definitely want them in the future.


4. If you were another person, would you be a friend of yourself?

I'm not entirely sure. Umm...yeah, I have no idea.


5. Do you use sarcasm a lot?

I don't think I use it as much as I used to.


6. Will you ever bungee-jump?

Heck yeah!!


7. What's your favorite cereal?

Probably Lucky Charms. I love the little marshmellows.


8. What's the first thing you notice about people?

I've never really thought about this, but probably their clothes. When I was little, I wanted to be a fashion designer, so I guess there's still a part of me that instantly looks at clothes.


9. What is your eye color?

I've been told they change colors. Like one day they'll be green and then the next they'll be almost grey.


10. Scary move or happy ending?

I LOVE scary movies! But, I also love happy endings. Why do you make me choose??


11. Favorite smells?

Vanilla and new books.


12. Summer or winter?

It used to be winter, but I think I'm starting to like summer more.


13. Computer or television?

Computer. I basically do everything on it, including posting this.


14. What's the furthest you've ever been from home?

My family went to Florida for about a week so that we could go to Universal Studios and Treasure Island (I think that was the name of the theme park...). We were supposed to go to the beach, but it liked to rain there, so therefore, I have still never been to the beach.


15. Do you have any special talents?

I can't think of anything right now... Wow, that's kind of depressing. Do I not have any talents? My family thinks I can sing, but I'm not too sure about that.


16. Where were you born?

I was born in Kansas City, Missouri and stayed there until I was four.


17. What are your hobbies?

Of course, one of them is reading. Another is writing. I also like photography.


18. Do you have any pets?

I have a cat that is part siamese and part bengal. So he likes to pounce us and hang off of the fridge or microwave.


19. Favorite movie?

Pride & Prejudice (2005), That Awkward Moment, Divergent, and Pocahontas.


20. Do you have any siblings?

I have a younger brother and sister and I also have an older half-brother on my dad's side.


21. What do you want to be when you grow up?

Wow, that's a loaded question. Umm, audio engineer, author, editor, actress, book cafe owner...yeah, that's all.

Currently reading

The Chronicles of Narnia
C.S. Lewis
Progress: 10 %
The Initiation and The Captive (Part 1) (Secret Circle Series #1-2)
L.J. Smith
Progress: 130/396 pages