A Smattering Of Mini Reviews

Here we are again…I’m woefully behind on talking about books I’ve read and I’ve been reading faster than I can write about them. I mean, that’s  all true. But mostly I’ve just been a little lazy. So let’s DO THIS:



The Girl With All The Gifts

The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey

About In A Sentence (ish): An epidemic. Zombies. Kids. I’m not telling youuuu anything. GO IN BLIND.

Thoughts: This one was one of our book club picks! To me, it was like a cross of Station Eleven and The Walking Dead so I REALLY enjoyed it. Perfect blend of action/zombie stuff and the thought-provoking humanity type stuff I like. I was intrigued by the science of the disease and also the humanization of it through Melanie’s POV and her relationship with her teacher. Her humanization makes all the testing for a cure to take back the world seem so morally grey because SHE IS LIKE A HUMAN. And holy CRAPPPP that ending you guys! I was standing up giving a slow clap when I was able to get my shit together.




There Will Come A Time by Carrie Arcos

About: Mark is grieving the loss of his twin sister’s death and, after reading her journal with the help of her best friend, he embarks on a journey to complete a list of things she wanted to do as he tries to reconcile with the parts of his sister he never knew.

Thoughts: Okay so this was one of those times where I thought this book was BEAUTIFUL, well-written and SO WELL DONE — but my emotions kind of stayed at a relatively low level considering this was story dealing with grief which normally SLAYS me. So I don’t know what really happened THERE (maybe my emotions were in check for once) but I just felt like even though I was dog-earring all these beautiful and heart-wrenching passages I just wasn’t FEELING them so much as I was understanding them. She just NAILED so much about grief — especially how one pulls away and how you feel like NOBODY in the world understands you. Watching him work through his grief as he tries to complete Grace’s list was a bittersweet journey. Overall I really liked it and highly recommend, I just didn’t feel as emotionally connected as I would have liked to be.





Love By the Book by Melissa Pimentel

About In A Sentence: A twenty-something expat in London decides to embark on an experiment to date according to the advice from a new dating guide every month.

Thoughts: I wanted to love this one more! I mean, I enjoyed it to some degree but I DON’T KNOWWW. I was hoping for more. I loved the premise because I thought about all the lols and hijinx  that would occur if someone tried to follow dating guide books to the T. And they happened! They just weren’t AS funny or entertaining as I had hoped to be honest. Sure, they entertained me enough (especially the beginning) but I just had hoped for so much more. I also weirdly did not really feel very much for the main character — never felt like I got a grasp of her outside of her dating life. Overall I was entertained enough, especially considering this was loosely based on the author’s own similar experiment, but it wasn’t the amazing laugh-fest I thought it would be.






Like No Other by Una LaMarche

About In A Sentence: Two teens from vastly upbringings meet by chance and, even though it is forbidden, they forge a connection and their eyes are open to so much beyond what they’ve always known which causes them to question it all.

Thoughts: This was definitely a very underrated book of 2014. It was such a refreshing storyline and romance. I always love forbidden kind of romances and I loved this one to pieces. I loved learning about Devorah’s religion and culture as a Hasidic Jew and I loved even MORE watching her question what she believed to be right for her life and her future after meeting Jaxon who opens her eyes to a lot of things. AND THAT ENDING WAS REALLY SUPER SATISFYING TO ME. *slow claps for THAT* Couldn’t stop reading this one and I want more people to! My heart was totally wrapped up in Devorah and Jaxon’s story!



Have you read any of these? What did you think?

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Oh my you read so many books. I love it! haven’t read any of those yet but your reviews make we want to read them all!

  2. Great reviews. I read The Girl with all the Gifts last year and LOVED it!

  3. I LOVED The Girl with All the Gifts! It was a favorite of last year and I was really surprised I loved it so much because that type of book can go meh for me. I’m so happy you loved it too 🙂 I’ve not read the others.

  4. This is an awesome series of mini reviews! I’ve never seen The Walking Dead except for about 20 minutes of an episode, but I’ve heard it’s a good tv show. I haven’t heard of Like No Other, but it sounds like a good read! These are all books I hadn’t heard of before but I’m definitely going to look them up on Goodreads! Great reviews!

  5. Ha, it’s funny. I read Love by the Book too, and was really pleasantly surprised, but I didn’t go in expecting a laughfest, so I can see why you ended up sort of on the other side. It was compared to Bridget Jones, which I love but also is sometimes TOO awkward for me to handle. I liked how she approached everything with a very scientific mindset, and it didn’t become this complete farce, but it was way more understated than people would probably expect.

  6. My book club read Like No Other, and there were mixed feelings. Some did not like the ending, while others thought it was realistic. I thought it was very well-written and definitely a hidden gem of 2014.

  7. I love writing and reading mini reviews – so many good books packed into a single post! I haven’t read any of these, but I’ll be requesting “Like No Other” from my library for sure…

  8. First of all, I know you’re doing it out of necessity and/or convenience, but I really LOVE the mini review format! I really envy your ability to perfectly encapsulate your feelings about any given book in one or two paragraphs. Teach me your ways, Jamie! While I was super excited to see Like No Other included in this post (easily one of the best and most woefully overlooked 2014 titles) I was also really excited to see There Will Come A Time, which I have an ARC of but have yet to read. I’m unfamiliar with Arcos’ work but I have heard such wonderful things from fellow contemporary fans. I’m so glad to know that your experience with it was relatively positive, despite your inability to really connect with the story on an emotional. It’s funny how that happens, isn’t it? I remember that being one of the primary problems I encountered with Wendy Wunder’s The Museum Of Intangible Things. The beauty of the prose was second-to-none, but I was never able to forge a real connection with either character. It’s like I was able to appreciate what the author created intellectually but I was kept at a constant distance and the text never really resonated with me, despite some extremely serious subject matter. It’s so hard to quantify that sort of feeling (or lack thereof) in a review.

  9. I’m really intrigued by your review of “The Girl with All the Gifts” – just added it to my goodreads. I love The Walking Dead but I’ve never read any zombie books! Well, I read some of the comic books for the series, but no actual novels. I don’t know why! They’ve just never been on my radar, but since I started blogging a few months ago I have heard a few I want to try out.

  10. I really want to read The Girl with All the Gifts! I’ve been hearing nothing but amazing things about it and now I guess I have no excuse. *Goes in search of book.*