Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

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4stars

All my life I’ve had a body worth commenting on and if living in my skin has taught me anything it’s that if it’s not your body, it’s not yours to comment on.

Title: Dumplin’
Author: Julie Murphy
Series: Dumplin’ #1

Number of pages: 384 (hardcover edition)
Good things about this book: Fat representation!
Bad things about this book: Will made me angry but the writing kept me glued to the pages.
Do I recommend it? Yes, I do.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

I’ve had this book for so long, yet I left it there along with so many unread books because I impulse buy everything and read slowly! I bought this book because it was about a fat girl and fat girls don’t usually get the spotlight. I have always somewhat related to a lot of characters in the past but rarely in body type. I was happy to read about other girls like me.

I’m not like Willowdean, though; I’m obese (the numbers don’t lie) but I’m not as big as her. I was never bullied because of my body and I find clothes my size in franchising stores. I wear whatever I feel comfortable in and, to hell to “normal” beach bodies, in summer I put on a swimsuit and enjoy the sun and the ocean. I’m not ashamed of being the biggest girl on the beach. I don’t care of sitting next to skinny girls. I want to lose a few kg but it’s because of healthy reasons, I’m not ashamed of how I look.

The word fat makes people uncomfortable. But when you see me, the first thing you notice is my body. And my body is fat. It’s like how I notice some girls having big boobs or shiny hair or knobby knees. Those things are okay to say. But the word fat, the one that best describes me, makes lips frown and cheeks lose their color.

My mother is like Will’s mother. Obsessed with weight, she becomes anxious at the sight of food. She’s been on a diet since she was a teenager because my grandma is exactly like her. When she came to stay with us for a few months, she kept referring to me as “gordita”, fatty in Spanish. I was not bothered because I am fat, but my mom hated it. She is too fixated on how we must look that she doesn’t stop to ask if I’m happy the way I am. I’m miserable when I’m on a diet. Miserable and sad. I think a lot of my eating issues are because of her but I won’t tell her; I love her and I know she means well even if it hurts me so much when she judges me when I eat.

So being a fat girl with a mother like Willowdean’s, I related so much to her but at the same time I wanted to scream and shake her because she had the opportunities a lot of us don’t have and she was letting them slip away. I understood where she was coming from but that didn’t make it easier to read. She had not one but two boys interested in her, boys who didn’t see her body as an obstacle, something to hide or to run from, but as part of the package that made Will so interesting and adorable.

Lucy, my mom, Ellen, Bo. Little versions of each of them seem to live inside of me, one louder than the next. The only voice that isn’t there – the one I need the most – is my own.

I loved that the boys weren’t the real problem of the book; her friends weren’t the problem either. The problem was Willowdean all along. She had to face her insecurities and come out victorious. As cliché as it may sound, she was indeed the only one standing in her way from happiness. She chose to enter the beauty pageant as some kind of protest but also to challenge herself. I liked seeing how she took the competition.

The ending was really sweet I almost forgot how angry I was with Will for a lot of choices she made. Today I received Puddin’, the companion novel to Dumplin’ but from Millie’s pov. That’s going to be interesting to read!

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Fence #6 by C.S. Pacat, Johanna the Mad & Joana Lafuente

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5stars

Ah! An indirect win. The same concept as an indirect kiss!

Title: Fence
Author: C.S. Pacat (Author), Johanna the Mad (Illustrator), Joana Lafuente (Illustrator)
Series: Fence #6

Number of pages: 32 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: More Seiji and Nicholas together!!
Bad things about this book: Nothing! I liked everything even if I still crave more!
Do I recommend it? Always!
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

My monthly frustrating 10-minute read has been, as usual, lacking of smooching but full of fencing. And we got to see a super smiley Nicholas and that was worth the wait!

20180517_174437Look at him! Precious boy!

So Seiji lost his match against Aiden and he is of course furious but now it’s not time to focus on Seiji because it’s time for Nicholas match against one of Aiden’s many heartbroken lovers. I’m glad people finally saw what he is capable of; now they won’t keep underestimating him, they will now he can fence and he will only improve if given the chance.

20180517_174354Seiji shows so many different facial expressions for and because of Nicholas!

I loved how coach blocked the door to the bathroom when Seiji was inside brooding and feeling sorry for himself but when Nicholas came looking for him, she let him pass. She knows that somehow, amidst the rivalry, Nicholas’ words and personality go through Seiji’s super stubborn head.

So much smiling. I’m still happy about the smiles I saw and Seii’s angry face being a 5-y.o. because of Nicholas. I love them so much. This comic is getting better and better and I can’t wait for more!

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Been Here All Along by Sandy Hall

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4stars

I have a crush on my best friend. I have become a teen rom-com cliché. There is no hope for me.

Title: Been Here All Along
Author: Sandy Hall
Number of pages: 214 (paperback edition)
Good things about this book: It was really sweet and easy to get into the story.
Bad things about this book: Not enough romance for a romance book.
Do I recommend it? Yes, of course.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

Really cute. Almost drama free but since it was obvious from the beginning what the drama was going to be about, I knew it was going to be okay in the end.

This was obviously a happily ever after kind if book, I trusted it to be so. Cute characters that grew as people in such a short time, not forced, very real life and all that, they surprised me. But this is so obviously a utopic book because the little drama didn’t counterbalance how easily they seem to overcome their obstacles. It’s okay, though, I don’t need a constant reminder of how life isn’t easy or fair; sometimes we just need to read about simpler lives.

Many povs that at first I thought were going to confuse me but in the end they gave me the intel I needed to understand the main characters better. You need to see the characters from others povs to really SEE them; if that makes any sense at all. I liked that.

The book promised me to be about Gideon and Kyle’s feelings for each other and how these feelings were going to change their friendship and their lives. There were many scenes with exact that but I felt that there was too much about other things. Too much for a book this short. If the book was a hundred pages longer, all the info would’ve been a very important integration to the narrative, but with a book this short, the info took too much space off the romance I really wanted to see since that was what this book was going to be about.

Nevertheless, this book contained the perfect story needed for a quiet weekday night. A book you could start and finish in a few hours. You wouldn’t have gone to bed desperately wanting to know how it was going to end. You could go to bed at a reasonable time with a smile on your face because this book gave you a cute little story about two nerd guys, with very strong opinions about The Lord of the Rings movies, loving each other. And that was enough to convince me to read it.

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Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel

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5stars

I wanted to save everyone. I wanted it so bad. Maybe it’s because no matter how much I try, I can’t shake the thought that they’re dying because of me. I fell on a hand and I brought the world to the brink of war.

Title: Waking Gods
Author: Sylvain Neuvel
Series: Themis Files #2
Number of pages: 320 (paperback edition)
Good things about this book: I love the writing style and all the science!
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

What a rollercoaster of a book. I was left shaken and with my jaw on the floor. So many things happened. So many twists I should have taken into consideration but instead didn’t so I was genuinely surprised. And shocked.

The first book ended with Rose literally coming back from the dead without her memories of working with Themis and her team of soldiers and scientists. This book starts nine years after that, with Rose feeling out of place and like a fake, and with Kara and Vincent still being the Themis pilots going on tours around the world. A new organization for the protection of Earth has been founded and it has the giant robot as sole protector of the planet. But the feared alien invasion, even if later than anticipated, decided to arrive and one after the other, bigger giant robots than Themis start appearing on Earth in highly populated cities. People in power don’t know what they want, they are scared, and scared people make mistakes. Things weren’t looking very good for humanity.

I still love the writing style of this book: the dialogues, the journal entries, and the mysterious man behind it all. It felt like a movie was playing inside my head while I was reading. No long descriptions, just the characters interacting among themselves or involved in some mission that could be fatal. Sometimes this kind of narration is refreshing.

The third and last book of this trilogy, Only Human, is on its way and I will receive it soon. I have already put it on my may tbr list so I will read it as soon as it gets here. I’m really curious about what is going to happen after than ending! I didn’t really see any of that coming. These books would make a really great mockumentary movie.

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[ARC] My Lavender Boyfriend by Marina Ford

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4stars

Often when I was alone in bed, which was pretty much every night, I had this feeling of phantom arms embracing me. I don’t know if this was a sign of my loneliness or what, but it was as though my body remembered what it was like to be with someone, even while I was forgetting.

Title: My Lavender Boyfriend
Author: Miranda Ford
Number of pages: Don’t know, it doesn’t say (kindle edition)
Expected publication: May 23rd 2018
Good things about this book: Simon is adorable and I like a lot how the book is written.
Bad things about this book: It was different from what it was told it was going to be.
Do I recommend it? Yes, give it a try.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

ARC from NetGalley

Awww this book was so sweet and adorable yet it was still missing something, but it didn’t have the drama or miscommunication I usually find in romance novels and for that I was glad. And also for that this will get 4 solid stars from me!

Simon, screenwriter now film professor is asked to be in a fake relationship with gorgeous actor Nick because Nick needs to clean his name and image and being with Simon can be exactly what he needs for the public to see him as a new and improved person. Nick was the sweetest and he got handy and flirty and you could see how not fake it was from him. I wish there was more about him, I feel like I’m missing so much more cuteness from that sweet big boy!

What was it missing, though? Well, this book promised me it was going to be about Simon and Nick being fake boyfriends then, obviously, developing real feelings, fall madly in love and have a happy life together. While it delivered what was promised, at the same time, it sort of didn’t. It was in the background. Nick felt like a side character, one of those who interact a lot with the main character but isn’t as important to the story. But Nick was important; without him, Simon would have never done everything he did, he would have never confronted his demons.

It still was a sweet story because what we saw about Simon and Nick, however small, was enough to understand why they went from strangers to lovers without much drama or words not said. It all flowed quietly and slowly, perfectly. Then, though, the story was much more about Simon and his dealing with his past and problems and the romance was left on the background. The title is “My Lavender Boyfriend” so I was hoping of having more of that.

This book was like the movie My Big Fat Wedding, a movie I hope you all have seen because it’s adorable. You’ll think the movie, if you read the title, is about the wedding, how the two main characters fall in love and tie the knot. Well it’s not about it. The movie is about the main character rediscovering herself, being the best person she can be, confronting her demons, her family, standing up for herself and finding true love that she didn’t think she was ever going to find. Also, this is one of the very few romantic comedies without drama in it and I loved every second of it.

This book is exactly like that movie; Simon’s love story is important and it’s adorable, you see how he starts relaxing when he is with Nick and you see how this peculiar fake relationship makes him grow. Simon confronts his past in the form of his ex-boyfriend who broke his heart, his present in the form of his family and his work, and his future in the form of Nick and a love story that promises wonders.

Long story short, I really liked this book, so full of sweetness, ambition, hope, and love. I started it and didn’t want to put it down. When a book manages to make me want to lose sleep, I say it’s a book worthy of the attention of everyone looking for a tiny piece of happiness in their everyday life. It did bring me joy so I’m hoping it’ll bring some to you, too.

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[ARC] Lock Nut by J.L. Merrow

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5stars

Did couples buy each other wedding presents, anyway? I mean, he’d be getting me, which some might say was quite enough to be getting on with.

Title: Lock Nut
Author: J.L. Merrow
Series: The Plumber’s Mate Mysteries #5
Number of pages: 330 (kindle edition)
Expected publication: May 14th 2018
Good things about this book: Tom and Phil!! The ending!!
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes yes yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

ARC from NetGalley

I may have already mentioned it but I requested this book from NetGalley because I thought it sounded interesting and when I got approved and was ready to read it, I noticed it was the fifth book of a series. Bad luck? Au contraire, I’d say! This mistake made me discover one hell of a book series I have fallen in love with. There’s always room in my heart for more fictional characters to love and cherish.

This book was really sweet (besides the murders) and, surprise surprise, Phil wasn’t a bum in this one. After four books of him being the broody melodramatic man our Tom loves, I was ready to slap him if he dared do anything to upset my boy. He did, of course he did, but it wasn’t like in the first books when their love was just beginning. I forgave him almost immediately.

“You’ve got him well trained,” Dave said with a smirk.
“Too right. Want to see him come when I call?” I winked in case he hadn’t got the innuendo.

Cherry and Greg got married, left for Scotland for a pretty cold honeymoon, so now it was Tom and Phil’s wedding countdown. With only a few months to spare and a lot to plan, Tom is overwhelmed and overthinking. This led to some misunderstanding but not something to be worried about. Tom and Phil are super in love and it shows. There weren’t the steamy scenes we got in the first two books and I was weirdly okay with that, with only imagining how they had fun when nobody was around. I knew they were all over each other and that they loved each other so much they wanted to protect the other from harm.

There’s nothing easy about this protecting from harm business when they are always involved in murder investigations, though. First one man dead, then another, and Tom and Phil are once again among suspects they want to trust but can’t, seeing as it could lead to them getting badly hurt, again. Like that never has happened in the past.

Giving us a polite smile was a young man—early twenties, I’d guess—who set my gaydar pinging off the scale. So going by past results, he was probably happily married to his second wife and with a baby or six on the way.

I love the idea Phil has about Tom’s abilities being evolving because he’s using them more. I want him to stop thinking himself a fraud and try experimenting at home to see to what extent he can find what’s hidden. This will help him in the future and it will make their lives much easier when someone hires Phil for a job.

The ending was precious. Nothing over the top with forced tears or forced emotions. You find yourself truly invested in the lives of those two men and the feelings you are having are authentic. You are really happy they found each other again even if when they met at first one was the living nightmare of the other. The part where Tom reveals something hard about his past as a bullied boy, broke my heart. I think Phil needs to know this, not to make him feel guilty but I think he needs to know this part of Tom’s past. I think it’s important and I wonder why Darren, having witnessed the speech, didn’t say anything about it. I wonder if we’re going to come back to it in the next book. Because there’s going to be a next book, right? I need Tom in my life! I need more of him!

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Blow Down by J.L. Merrow

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5stars

Funny how getting mixed up with a few murders can give people second thoughts about inviting you into their house.

Title: Blow Down
Author: J.L. Merrow
Series: The Plumber’s Mate Mysteries #4
Number of pages: 332 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: It’s sadly hilarious that there are so many murders involving our Tom!
Bad things about this book: Phil is still my weakness but he’s getting better so he’s not so bad after all.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

I love this series to pieces. I love the mystery yet I NEVER get the murderer right. I guess I’m not really a detective, not good at understanding who is a suspect.

Loved Tom, as usual, and with all the mixed feelings he makes ne have, I’m warming a lot to Phil! I just want them to be happy! As much as I’m tolerating Phil a little bit more, I still find his sudden bursts of anger to be annoying and unnecessary. Tom doesn’t deserve this. They need to understand each other and trust each other more; they’re getting married for goodness sake!

I reeled away from the gazebo feeling in dire need of a bit of moral support, possibly of the liquid variety. No, scratch that. This was serious. I needed moral support of the tall, blond, and broody variety.

Tom is famous now and everyone wants a piece of his psychic butt. Unfortunately nobody seems to understand what his talent entails. He is bothered and he doesn’t need to add that to his many sufferings. A posh lady asks him to find her missing valuable necklace and, not surprising me in the slightest, she ends up dead. Again, Tom is badly hurt, Phil wants to protect him at all cost, and they end up in trouble. Their life is not boring, that’s for sure.

“Stop judging my taste in food,” I told Merlin. “I saw you eat a moth last week. And it was still flapping at the time. You haven’t got a paw to stand on.”

I need a spin off of the adventures of Arthur and Merlin, the cats. I want a short story of Tom and Phil through their eyes. That’ll be wonderful!

It’s been too long since I read it and I don’t remember every detail so I’m leaving this review as is. Nothing to add. I read the series so fast that in my mind they’re one huge book. I think about Tom all the time. Just give me more books about him!

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