Book in Review: None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio

22896551Title: None of the Above
Author: I.W. Gregorio
Publishing Date: April 7th 2015
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Format: ARC
Rating: 5/5 stars


A groundbreaking story about a teenage girl who discovers she was born intersex... and what happens when her secret is revealed to the entire school. Incredibly compelling and sensitively told, None of the Above is a thought-provoking novel that explores what it means to be a boy, a girl, or something in between.

What if everything you knew about yourself changed in an instant?

When Kristin Lattimer is voted homecoming queen, it seems like another piece of her ideal life has fallen into place. She's a champion hurdler with a full scholarship to college and she's madly in love with her boyfriend. In fact, she's decided that she's ready to take things to the next level with him.

But Kristin's first time isn't the perfect moment she's planned—something is very wrong. A visit to the doctor reveals the truth: Kristin is intersex, which means that though she outwardly looks like a girl, she has male chromosomes, not to mention boy "parts."

Dealing with her body is difficult enough, but when her diagnosis is leaked to the whole school, Kristin's entire identity is thrown into question. As her world unravels, can she come to terms with her new self?

"Love isn’t a choice. You fall for the person, not their chromosomes.”

I cannot stress enough how important this book is. There are a lot of great YA books, but only few are this brilliant. This is one of the most diverse, raw and  incredible books I have ever read and I can't seem to find the appropriate words that would give justice to this masterpiece. This is the first book I've read about an intersex character, as well as one of the few times I have encountered such a word. This book gave me a deeper understanding of what an intersex is and the challenges they face in our society.

I have to admit that at first I had my doubts about this book and was extremely skeptical and critical as I read it. I knew the subject matter of this but I was afraid that it would not be handled all too well. But boy, I was wrong. It was not only handled well, it was handled brilliantly. It is evident how much research was put into writing this book, of course, nothing less to be expected from the author who is a surgeon who treated an intersex patient that inspired this novel.  You can actually see that the author cares about what she's writing, that she' s passionate about this cause and subject and that she has taken extreme care into making this book as flawless as possible.

And yes, it delivers. 

The novel is eye-opening. Kristin's story and struggle to be accepted in a society that is cruel, close minded and ignorant will impact you in ways unimaginable. It will make you question the standards and the norms we live in right now and will raise the questions: Does it really matter what chromosomes we have? Does it matter what our genders are?  Does liking the color  blue make you any less a female? Do any of these matter? There is a lot of discussion about gender, what constitutes it, identity, and what it truly means to be a girl or a boy. 

Plot wise, I found some parts problematic and a little too convenient, especially in the romance aspect of the story. However, all things else I found the plot to be well-paced and Kristin's struggle to be very realistic. Her main support system in the book is of course her father and I loved how well their relationship is portrayed. He still sees Kristin the same way despite her condition and does his best to make it easier for her and support her in every decision she makes. Kristin is a strong MC and though she struggles and is insecure with her condition at first, I find her admirable as she constantly picks herself up and even fights for her spot in the track team. I loved her character development, and found the pacing just right. The novel ends a little too conveniently but I liked how it has a happy ending, as it gives a truly positive message about being intersex.

None of the Above is truly an honest and refreshing debut. It tackles some heavy matter but it does it just the right way. I feel as if this book will educate its readers more than it will entertain them, and that I think is what makes this a glorious contribution to young adult literature.

All the DNF and Below 2-Star Reviews Part 1

We've realized that we've DNF-ed quite a bit of books or gave them really low ratings but didn't have enough to say about them except that they were bad. This is basically a compilation of all those books. There will be a part 2 and maybe a part 3 of the DNF and below 2-star reviews.

231160751. Some Kind of Magic by Adrian Fogelin

Expected Publication: April 1, 2015
Publisher: Peachtree Publishers
Format: ARC

Summary (via Goodreads):
It's the summer before high school starts for Cass, Jemmie, Ben, and Justin, the neighborhood kids readers met in Crossing Jordan. Ben worries the break will be routine, until his little brother Cody finds a hat left by their missing uncle. The hat leads them to a lost house in the woods. They don't suspect the house with a tragic past might nudge them toward the future.

I really didn't want to DNF any book this year, but I thought it'd be better to DNF this rather than finishing the book and hating it. That's just not fair. 

Although the cover, title and even the plot of this book caught my attention, I had to DNF it around 25%. The reasons are:
1. I wasn't motivated while reading it like usually when you read a book you continue reading it because you're entertained or you want to know what happens next. In this case, I didn't seem to care.

2. The characters don't have any unique characteristics within them. At least that's what I feel 1/4 through.

3. The writing style wasn't even bad, it's just that it would not keep you reading it.

4. Lastly, there was nothing happening. The hardest part of reading is starting the book and I was expecting that the beginning would also catch my attention, but it just didn't. 

2. You Own Me by Mary Catherine Gebhard

Publisher: Trendlettrs
Publication Date: February 14th, 2015
Format: ARC

Summary (via Goodreads):

“I’ll love you until you break my heart. I’ll give you the broken pieces of my heart as an offering to you, because you own it. Whole, shattered, alive, or dead; you own my heart no matter what condition it’s in. I’ll stay with you until you figure out how to feel. I’ll stay with you even if you never do.”

This is a story about happiness, and how it doesn't simply happen because you fall in love.

Lennox is on the run from her ex-boyfriend. She had to drop everything, tell no one, and move to a new town, alone. She expected to be lonely, she expected to be afraid, but she never expected to meet a man named Vic who drove her crazy with lust and anger and called her “Lenny.” If it’s at all possible, Vic is more twisted than the man she ran away from. 

She should ignore him, but they’re drawn to each other like magnets. Lennox ran from from Seattle to Santa Barbara to get away from violence, to create a new life, and to be something simple. Instead she’s found herself wrapped up in great friends and an epic love. This new life is the opposite of everything she wants, but it might just be everything she needs.

This book. I don't have much to say except that I didn't like this. The book, though not boring, failed to catch my attention. I had no affinity for the characters. The abusive ex-boyfriend did not feel like it actually had an impact on her apart from her statements of being more paranoid because of him. I think that Vic is a douchebag. I hate the description 'Asian Greek God' because, well, seriously? What is that? I couldn't relate. I wasn't interested. I don't really have anything else to say.

207023213. Beau, Lee, The Bomb and Me by Mary McKinley

Publisher: K-Teen
Publication Date: October 28th, 2014
Format: ARC
Pages: 256

Summary (via Goodreads):

When Beau transferred to our school. I thought: "Good; fresh meat." Because I knew he would be tormented the entire time he was at Baboon High. Like I am. All day. . .every day. Growing up is a trip. . .

In high school, there are few worse crimes than being smart or fat. Lucky me, I'm both. But when Beau Gales blows in to town, it takes about two minutes for the jackasses at our Seattle school to figure out he's gay, and that makes him an even bigger target. Have you ever heard the saying: 'The enemy of my enemy is my friend'? There's something to that.

When the bullying gets violent and Beau decides to run away to San Francisco to ask his Uncle Frankie for advice, we all go. Beau, me, Leonie (designated class slut), and a scruffy rescue dog called The Bomb--a tribe of misfits crammed into my mom's minivan. Throw in a detour to the Twilight town of Forks, armed robbery, cool record shops, confessions, breakups and makeups, and you have the kind of journey that can change the way you look at the whole world--and yourself.

This book is just not for me. It actually seemed quite promising at first since the main character is fat and geeky, Beau is gay. Basically, the characters have variety. I commend the author for taking the risk of writing about characters that aren't beautiful and perfect. Even so, the dialogue and the writing ruined this book for me. I think that this book could be much, much better with improved writing.

Book in Review: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

19547856Title: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda
Author: Becky Albertalli
Publishing Date: April 7th 2015
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Format: ARC
Rating: 3/5 stars


Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met
I have mixed thoughts about this book and I am not too sure of what to think about it. On one hand, I found this to be an enjoyable and adorable read that got me giddy all over, but on the other, I felt like it lacked depth and substance to the story. The story is pretty simple to follow: Simon is a closeted gay boy, who has a secret online relationship with this guy named Blue. When one of his classmates, Martin, discovers their email conversations, he blackmails Simon to play matchmaker for him and Simon's friend Abby. Simon, who doesn't want his secret to be exposed, plays along.

Eventually, Simon is forced to go out of the closet and we see how Simon deals with the sudden turn of events. 

Let me get this straight - the only thing I honestly liked about this book is the romance, and I didn't even like it that much that I could overlook all the other things I didn't like. What I didn't like? The blandness of the story and the over characterization.

Book in Review: The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma


Title: The Walls Around Us
Author: Nova Ren Suma
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Publication Date: March 24, 2015
Format: ARC
Pages: 336 (Hardcover)

Summary (via Goodreads):
“Ori’s dead because of what happened out behind the theater, in the tunnel made out of trees. She’s dead because she got sent to that place upstate, locked up with those monsters. And she got sent there because of me.”

The Walls Around Us is a ghostly story of suspense told in two voices—one still living and one long dead. On the outside, there’s Violet, an eighteen-year-old dancer days away from the life of her dreams when something threatens to expose the shocking truth of her achievement. On the inside, within the walls of a girls’ juvenile detention center, there’s Amber, locked up for so long she can’t imagine freedom. Tying these two worlds together is Orianna, who holds the key to unlocking all the girls’ darkest mysteries.

We hear Amber’s story and Violet’s, and through them Orianna’s, first from one angle, then from another, until gradually we begin to get the whole picture—which is not necessarily the one that either Amber or Violet wants us to see.

Nova Ren Suma tells a supernatural tale of guilt and innocence, and what happens when one is mistaken for the other.

I'm sure you've all noticed that the summary is in black. This is because I didn't want anyone to read it before knowing that this book is so much better if you read it without knowing anything about it. If you do want to read the summary, highlight it and you should be able to read it.

I read this book barely knowing anything about it. Sure, I read the summary, but I merely skimmed it. This was due to the fact that I wanted to read the book as fast as possible because I was worried that I wouldn't be able to make a review in time. So, when I started reading this book, the only things I knew about it were that there are characters named Violet and Amber and that a girl named Orianna connects them. I read this at around 10:00 pm last night and I slept at 1:30 am even though I planned to sleep at 12:00 just because I couldn't put the book down. I started reading it and from then on, I took every opportunity I could to read it. Waking up the next day, I instantly started reading The Walls Around Us with the goal to figure out what exactly was going on. I'd like to say that I now completely understand what happened, but I honestly don't. 

Let me just say that Nova Ren Suma's writing is beautiful, flawless. She takes her time without taking too much time. She knows what words she needs to use to piece together this haunting story about friends, betrayal, mistakes, and crime. She is amazing. With short, simple sentences and precise descriptions, she created a tale that will stay with you long after you're read it. I have never heard of Nova before, but now, her name is not one that I will easily forget. She created characters that stayed true to who they were, but also managed to change and grow. Every single one of her characters are memorable, unique, important. I'd love to give you some quotes just to help you realize how great it is, but I would probably place the entire book here, for everything she wrote is gorgeous.

Amber is a girl who is locked up in a juvenile detention center, while Violet is a ballerina about to get into Juilliard and achieve everything she has ever wanted. This story was told by the two of them, and while their voices were similar in some ways, they had their own personalities, motivations. Orianna doesn't tell the story, but she is the center of it. With Amber, I can sense her motivation and the way she always has this sense of crazy underlying the calm but is also more mature than most people her age. With Violet, I could sense the ambition and the guiltless, honest, selfish way she acts to get where she wants. With Orianna, I could sense her loyalty and her humility even when she has so much talent that comes naturally. All three of them are connected in some way. 

This book is shocking, not because the events weren't expected or because there were unexpected twists, but because even if you already know whats about to happen, you deny it, you wish it away, and when it finally comes, it hits you like bullet from a gun. I didn't expect the supernatural twist (because I barely read the summary) and I'm not very fond of supernatural stories, but in this case, it worked. Although there are supernatural happenings, the story contains so much of the raw truth about humanity and the world we live in. How not everyone who is found guilty is guilty, how not everyone who is said to be innocent is innocent, and how money has always and will most likely always be a huge factor as to who wins and who loses. I won't know exactly why what happened, happened, so I just like to think of it as justice working and the balance being restored. Honestly, this book is better off keeping some secrets because that's what makes it so great. That's what makes it alluring, appealing to readers. Nova knew what to tell us and what to let us figure out for ourselves. She wrote with a blunt honestly that also manages to be subtle when it needs to be.

I love this book. It is one of the most amazing things I have ever read. The world building, the writing, the plot, the characters are all just wow. I advice anyone who reads this to read every single word even if it takes y0u more time. It's worth it.

Book in Review: Down the Wormhole by Ana Franco


Title: Down the Wormhole
Author: Ana Franco
Publisher: French Press Bookworks
Publication Date: March 17, 2015
Format: ARC

Summary (via Goodreads)
In a city there is a tiny lane that seperates two orphanages - one for boys and one for girls. Inside live two very special groups of teenagers. These teenagers carry a secret and leave it tucked safely away in their mysterious lives. 

Then one day, a girl named Kitty arrives. No last name, just Kitty.

Before Kitty has time to be astonished by the teenagers' real identitites, she is whisked into a magical realm that slowly unfolds her own. She must come to terms with her true place in the world while she can, because time is ticking and there are secrets in the wormhole.

Travel with Kitty and her new friends Down The Wormhole into a mysterious world of magic, mythology, and mayhem.

I am so disappointed. I have so many things to say about this book, but I don't know exactly how to explain them. I felt like this book could have done really, really well if the writing was different. 

When I started reading this book, I thought that I would love it since the characters seemed promising and the plot was unique. The length worried me, though. The story is one that you have to draw out and explain, for not everyone knows about the mythology behind these things, especially since it is a fusion of multiple mythologies. I don't think it's sufficient to introduce a god simply by telling us that they are the goddess of chaos or the god of mischief. If you're gonna talk about this, you have to describe, you have to give us more background. For a story that requires details, explanations, background, this book seemed too short. Even so, I thought to myself that length doesn't matter if the plot was laid out well. Unfortunately, the more I read, the more I realized that the length was going to become an issue. 

At the start of this book, Sif and Eris were battling. The scene was written well and made me excited to read the rest of the book. Unfortunately, when Kitty and the other gods were introduced, the book seemed to lose that quality. If the author was consistent in the way that she wrote the scenes, this book would have turned out great. 

I'm gonna state the problems one by one as I think that that would be the best way to talk about this.

1. The Writing
Franco wrote this book like she had so many ideas that she wanted to pack into a few pages. The writing was rushed, there weren't much descriptions, I couldn't connect with any of the characters. For me, the most important part of a story is the writing. You can write a cliche and it wouldn't matter to me if you could write it in a way that would interest me, make me connect with the characters. You could write an essay on pencils,  and I would read it if you gave me something that interested me. Down the Wormhole's plot interested me, but the writing was a letdown. I wouldn't mind if you made this book 500 pages long as long as you wrote everything you needed to write, and honestly, with the plot given, you could do exactly that. I also felt like the author changed her mind quite a few times on whether or not she wanted to make the book humorous or serious or deep or light. Sometimes, the writing did not match with what the scene is supposed to be, funny when the severity of the situation required serious handling. I also believe that she wanted to put so much into her work, and she wasn't willing to sacrifice some of it, so the entire thing became a big mess. There were also a lot of typos, grammatical errors, misspelled words, and jumbled sentences. I know that it's just an ARC, but the amount really distracted me from the story itself, and sometimes even caused me to become confused.

2. The Characters
So, nearly all of the characters are actually gods here, but aside from their godly names, they have normal names and normal personalities too. The problem with this is that the fact that they're gods don't really seem to have much importance. I mean, yes, I understand why they had to be that particular god, but on a much deeper level, it doesn't really serve any purpose. As stated above, I can't really relate to the characters. Kitty overreacts all the time, picks fights for no reason, and is, all around, a horrible person. Thomas... I don't really know. I don't like him, I don't hate him, and I don't really care about him. Some of the important characters seemed to be tossed aside at the end, and some of the characters brought back and suddenly important even though they served no purpose for more than half of the book. The romance happened quickly, and the book kinda focused on that more than the plot itself. I just think they could have focused on a lot of other relationships that would have made the story really great. The relationships were unnecessary, and there wasn't much character development.

Down the Wormhole holds potential that, unfortunately, wasn't carried out well. I think that this book could probably be really good if it was revised and edited. The writing was not great, and that ruined the book for me, the story becoming uninteresting and not relatable. I'd love to read the book in its final form just to see if the book is better after its final edits and revisions. I look forward to reading Franco's next works, and I believe that she does have great potential to become a very good author. 

It's Pi Day! 3.14.15

It's Pi Day! It's so cool because not only is it March 14, but it's also 2015 this year. Last year, we made a list of different geeky books with quotes. This year, we decided to make a list of books that will make you think. In no particular order, we give to you 6 books that will make you think.

1. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne

39999Berlin 1942

When Bruno returns home from school one day, he discovers that his belongings are being packed in crates. His father has received a promotion and the family must move from their home to a new house far far away, where there is no one to play with and nothing to do. A tall fence running alongside stretches as far as the eye can see and cuts him off from the strange people he can see in the distance.

But Bruno longs to be an explorer and decides that there must be more to this desolate new place than meets the eye. While exploring his new environment, he meets another boy whose life and circumstances are very different to his own, and their meeting results in a friendship that has devastating consequences.

2.The Help by Kathryn Stockett

4667024Three ordinary women are about to take one extraordinary step.... 

Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.

Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.

Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody's business, but she can't mind her tongue, so she's lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.

Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.

In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women--mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends--view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don't.

3. Luna by Julie Anne Peters

316445Regan's brother Liam can't stand the person he is during the day. Like the moon from whom Liam has chosen his female namesake, his true self, Luna, only reveals herself at night. In the secrecy of his basement bedroom Liam transforms himself into the beautiful girl he longs to be, with help from his sister's clothes and makeup. Now, everything is about to change-Luna is preparing to emerge from her cocoon. But are Liam's family and friends ready to welcome Luna into their lives? Compelling and provocative, this is an unforgettable novel about a transgender teen's struggle for self-identity and acceptance. 

4. The Giver by Lois Lowry

3636Jonas's world is perfect. Eveything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community. When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now, it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back.

5. The Book Thief by Markus Zusac

19063It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will be busier still.

By her brother's graveside, Liesel's life is changed when she picks up a single object, partially hidden in the snow. It is The Gravedigger's Handbook, left behind there by accident, and it is her first act of book thievery.

So begins a love affair with books and words, as Liesel, with the help of her accordian-playing foster father, learns to read. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor's wife's library, wherever there are books to be found.

But these are dangerous times. When Liesel's foster family hides a Jewish fist-fighter in their basement, Liesel's world is both opened up, and closed down.

In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.

6. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

1618Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow.

Although gifted with a superbly logical brain, for fifteen-year-old Christopher everyday interactions and admonishments have little meaning. He lives on patterns, rules, and a diagram kept in his pocket. Then one day, a neighbor's dog, Wellington, is killed and his carefully constructive universe is threatened. Christopher sets out to solve the murder in the style of his favourite (logical) detective, Sherlock Holmes. What follows makes for a novel that is funny, poignant and fascinating in its portrayal of a person whose curse and blessing are a mind that perceives the world entirely literally.

These are some of the books that we believe really makes someone think. If you're up for an intellectual read or something that is a little deeper, these books are the one for you! Have a great Pi Day!


Hi guys!!

We've been doing a lot of reviews, book tours, and basically all of our scheduled posts. But we haven't taken the time yet to just update you with our lives and this blog. Today, we want to talk to you, just tell you what's happening, what we're planning to do and what we were able to do already.

Blog Design

We're actually pretty happy with our blog design already and we haven't had it for so long yet. We're probably gonna change it, but we don't know exactly when. We could actually change it anytime that we feel like it. We're also quite sure that we're gonna change it within this year, maybe even more than once, so stay tuned for that! :)

Blog Posts

Audrey and Beryl are definitely gonna be more active in the next couple of months since school's out and they have plenty of time to blog already. Kimi's still a bit busy, but we're sure she'll find time for blogging. We are aware that we haven't been actively participating in blog features like FFFs or Waiting on Wednesdays. This is why we are planning to put these in our schedule too. We're not gonna be able to post everyday as our sched is hectic (school, extracurricular activities, side projects, catching up on our  TV series - if you count that as hectic). Even so, we are aiming to have quality content that will make up for the lack of posts. Hope you guys understand!

Personal Livessssssssssss

Since it's already summer here in the Philippines, we haven't been doing anything at all. And we're already more productive than last year. We have been blogging, watching series, reading, eating, taking naps (three naps a day keeps the doctor away!), stalking celebs, and the list goes on! If you have no life, like us two, we'll share to you what we do to keep boredom away.

1. TV Series to Watch
Teen Wolf
Why Watch: Dylan O'Brien, hot dudes, unnecessary backflips, DYLAN O'BRIEN, werewolves

Why Watch: you can use your brain, you learn stuff, it makes you feel smart

Why Watch: funny, stress-relieving

2. Books to Read
Books by Colleen Hoover
Why Read: excellent writer, 5-star reviews from Kimi

That's all for today! We really enjoyed writing this post, hope you guys enjoyed it too! Comment down below your fave series and books, so we could watch and read them together. <3

Blog Tour: Biggie by Derek E. Sullivan

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Biggie by Derek E. Sullivan
Published by: Albert Whitman & Company
Publication date: March 1st 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

Henry “Biggie” Abbott is the son of one of Finch, Iowa ‘s most famous athletes. His father was a baseball legend and his step-dad is a close second. At an obese 300+ pounds though, Biggie himself prefers classroom success to sports. As a perfectionist, he doesn’t understand why someone would be happy getting two hits in five trips to the plate. “Forty percent, that’s an F in any class,” he would say. As Biggie’s junior year begins, the girl of his dreams, Annabelle Rivers, starts to flirt with him. Hundreds of people have told him to follow in his dad’s footsteps and play ball, but Annabelle might be the one to actually convince him to try. What happens when a boy who has spent his life since fourth grade trying to remain invisible is suddenly thrust into the harsh glare of the high school spotlight?


Biggie is all about an overweight teenage boy named Henry. He got his nickname "Biggie", well because he practically weighed over 300 pounds. He's also a nerd who enjoys spending his time talking to strangers online than people at his school.

In my opinion, Biggie's character isn't someone that everyone could get along with since he's really a bit weird. But, as the book progresses, I slowly understood him and came to like him more. We all get to know what he's thinking and what he's feeling. Basically, its all about getting to know Biggie.

What I liked about the book? Well, I love that it's very realistic. Someone out there could easily have the same situation as Biggie. Most of us wants to fit in, to be noticed by people we like. All of us make mistakes, even Biggie does! The writing style of Derek was just simple yet very clear. Next thing I liked about the book is the story itself. It's not your average YA. It's a fresh read, and it seems a bit like a coming of age plot.

As much as I liked those aspects of the book, I took two stars because of my own feelings about the main character, Henry "Biggie". It's not about him being weird or freaky. He actually improved on that slowly. What I didn't like was how he expresses that he loves Annabelle. Sometimes, I feel like it's just about the looks. If Annabelle wasn't hot like Biggie's descriptions, then maybe he wouldn't care for her in the first place.

Biggie is still an enjoying read though. It teaches us to bring out the best in ourselves. Also, if we truly believe in ourselves then nothing is impossible. I am looking forward to reading more books by Derek Sullivan!


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Derek E. Sullivan is an award-winning reporter and columnist at the Rochester Post-Bulletin in Minnesota. As a reporter, he has written more than 1,000 stories about the lives of teenagers, which he attributes to helping him find his YA voice. He has an MFA from Hamline University and lives in Minnesota with his wife and three sons.

Author links:


Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)
a Rafflecopter giveaway
  • 2x 50$ B&N Gift Cards
  • 3x Signed copies of BIGGIE hardcover
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Kimi has read 3 books toward her goal of 100 books.