Pique Beyond Week || The Romantics by Leah Konen (ARC Review)

Abrams Books’ launched a new YA website called Pique Beyond! Pique is all about going beyond the book. Not only do they highlight exclusive excerpts and quotes from new and upcoming books, but they peel back the cover and show us the behind-the-scenes stuff: how books are made, what the authors were thinking, and how it all comes together. This week, they’re highlighting all of their newest titles, and let me tell you, they look amazing. Visit the site today at piquebeyond.com or follow them on Twitter and Instagram at @piquebeyond! Today, I’m sharing a title from Abrams Books that I really enjoyed reading!

the-romanticsThe Romantics by Leah Konen
Publication Date: November 1st, 2016 by Amulet Books
Source: ARC from Publisher via Netgalley
Rating: ★★★★
Amazon / Book Depository


Perfect for fans of Lauren Myracle and Rainbow Rowell, The Romantics will charm readers of all ages.

Gael Brennan is about to have his heart broken when his first big relationship crumbles on the heels of his parents’ painful separation. Love intervenes with the intention of setting things right—but she doesn’t anticipate the intrusion of her dreaded nemesis: the Rebound. Love’s plans for Gael are sidetracked by Cara, Gael’s hot-sauce-wielding “dream girl.” The more Love meddles, the further Gael drifts from the one girl who can help him mend his heart. Soon Love starts breaking all her own rules—and in order to set Gael’s fate back on course, she has to make some tough decisions about what it means to truly care.

I received an ARC of this book from the Publisher. No compensation in any form was received for the review of this book.

It’s true that this book will charm readers of all ages. And this book got me out of my reading slump. From the first chapter, I got hooked already because of the wit and sass of the narrator.

See, this book is about love and is narrated by Love itself so it got really funny and quirky, yet serious at the same time which is why I loved it so much.

“Real love makes you better than you ever know you could be.”

Gael Brennan is a total romantic. I think readers can pick it up early on and I really found it adorable. Romantics are my kind of people because I am one too, although I could say that I’m sort of cynical from time to time. When he got his heart broken, Love helped him but as Love meddled, some things got out of hand as The Rebound came in the picture.

The narration is one of my favorite aspects of the book. It’s so on point and hilarious! This book is like watching your favorite romantic-comedy movie, snuggled under covers while eating popcorn or drinking cocoa or whatever your favorite beverage is. This book is exactly the one you should read on a Friday night when you just want to chill.

“Romantic love is one thing, but the love between a parent and a child—well, that is always worth fighting for.”

I also enjoyed how this book celebrated different kinds of love: from romantic, platonic, familial, and even pragmatic. I love contemporary books that not only focuses on romance but also, does not shy away from friendships and family relationships. Honestly, this book reminded me of a lot of YA contemps that I read and rom-coms that I watched before, so I think I’m probably going to catch some flicks or two because this book left me wanting more love stories!

So listen, this book needs to be read by any contemporary lovers out there. It’s full of cliches but it was presented amazingly, in a way that will make readers agree and realize that cliches aren’t as bad as we all think. Besides, don’t we all get a little bit cliche when it comes to love?  I’m definitely impressed with Leah Konen’s writing style and I’m sure as hell looking forward to more of her works in the future!


Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

nevernightNevernight by Jay Kristoff
Publication Date: July 25th 2016 by Harper Voyager UK
Source: Borrowed ARC for Blog Tour
Rating:  ★★★★
Amazon / Book Depository / Goodreads


Destined to destroy empires Mia Covere is only ten years old when she is given her first lesson in death.

Six years later, the child raised in the shadows takes her first steps towards keeping the promise she made on the day that she lost everything.

But the chance to strike against such powerful enemies will be fleeting, so if she is to have her revenge, Mia must become a weapon without equal. She must prove herself against the deadliest of friends and enemies, and survive the tutelage of murderers, liars and demons at the heart of a murder cult.

The Red Church is no Hogwarts, but Mia is no ordinary student. The shadows loves her. And they drink her fear.

I received an ARC of this book as part of the Blog Tour. No compensation in any form was received for the review of this book.

This is, by far, the darkest book I’ve ever read and I loved almost everything about it. From the cover, to the characters, and their story. To be honest, I was a little worried about this book because I’ve heard so many great reviews, and some negative ones all from bloggers I trust so I wasn’t sure how to treat this one. Besides, the only books I’ve read from Jay Kristoff are Illuminae and Gemina, so I somehow have an idea of how he writes, but at the same time, I don’t really know his writing style for a book that he wrote alone.

This book had a really slow start and it took me a couple of chapters to get into. I was still testing the waters during the first few chapters because Kristoff’s writing style is really unique and the narration is vivid. So I guess this book isn’t really for everyone and the writing style is sort of an acquired taste. The great thing about it though is that it picks up the pace after sometime, like it seems to build up a momentum until the action kicks in.

“The brighter the light, the deeper the shadow.”

I love Mia, she’s a total badass! She’s definitely one of the most interesting characters I’ve read. And I also love the friendships formed in the book, especially with Tric! I’m also glad that the romance isn’t one of the central points in the book.

One thing I wasn’t really able to enjoy though are the footnotes because I found them distracting. Some, or most, of them are long yet it doesn’t really add anything to the story. It’s like a commentary from the narrator, which was kinda cool at first, but I stopped reading them all together after a few chapters.

“It’s quite a thing, to watch a person slip from the potential of life into the finality of death. It’s another thing entirely to be the one who pushed.”

From the synopsis itself, I already knew it’s going to be dark, but damn! It’s nothing compared to the book itself. There are themes of violence, death, and sex present in the book so I understand if readers become a little wary but I really do recommend this book!


No Holding Back by Kate Evangelista (ARC Review + Giveaway)

no holding backNo Holding Back by Kate Evangelista
Publication Date: October 18th 2016
Source: ARC from Publisher via Netgalley
Rating: ★★★★
Amazon / Book Depository


A romantic European vacation is the perfect excuse to let go in this highly anticipated sequel to No Love Allowed by Kate Evangelista.

Everyone knows that Nathan is in love with his best friend, Preston…Everyone except Preston. Nathan has always accepted that Preston was too focused on his swim training to worry about love. But Preston is heading off to train for the Olympics soon, so if Nathan wants his chance at love, he has to speak up now. But saying “I love you” is surprisingly difficult, even for someone as confident as Nathan. Maybe a whirlwind vacation in Europe could help? But… what if it doesn’t work out and he loses the best friend he’s ever had?

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher as part of the blog tour. No compensation in any form was received for the review of this book.

This was one of my most anticipated reads because I truly loved Nathan and Preston since No Love Allowed and I’m so glad that I wasn’t disappointed! It turned out to be a pretty quick read for me and I truly was left wanting more, but at the same time I was satisfied with it.

Nathan and Preston were truly adorable. They do have opposite personalities and I love how their polarities complement each other. I also love that most of the book’s setting was in Europe like this was truly GOALS AF! What wouldn’t you give just to spend a great time with your best friend-turned-lover in Europe? Seriously!

“You don’t need to sacrifice love just because you have a dream.”

Speaking of, one of the best things about this book was that best friends to lovers trope. I’m a sucker for that type of romance and I will never ever get tired of it. This one really did the job great.

The pacing of the book was mostly good, though it lagged a little in the middle but I didn’t really mind it that much. It was also predictable but hey, at least I got a satisfying ending.

“In everything, the one constant was Nathan.”

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. Kate Evangelista’s romantic story skills leaves you wanting more. Speaking of romantic, there’s a hot shower scene in this book so go read!!!

P.S. I’m not sure if it really was me on the Acknowledgement Page. I’ve yet to confirm with Kate, but if in case it was me, WELL, I’M DAMN LUCKY AND GRATEFUL BECAUSE IT’S MY FIRST TIME TO SEE MY NAME ON THE ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS HUHU!


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Review + Giveaway: Everyone We’ve Been by Sarah Everett

everyone we've beenEveryone We’ve Been by Sarah Everett
Publication Date: October 4th 2016 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Source: ARC from the Author
Rating: ★★★★
Amazon / Book Depository


Addison Sullivan has been in an accident. In its aftermath, she has memory lapses and starts talking to a boy that no one else can see. It gets so bad that she’s worried she’s going crazy.

Addie takes drastic measures to fill in the blanks and visits a shadowy medical facility that promises to “help with your memory.” But at the clinic, Addie unwittingly discovers it is not her first visit. And when she presses, she finds out that she had certain memories erased. She had a boy erased.

But why? Who was that boy, and what happened that was too devastating to live with? And even if she gets the answers she’s looking for, will she ever be able to feel like a whole person again?

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange of a review. No compensation in any form was received for the review of this book.

UGH! I have so many feelings for this book! It’s so good and I’m really wondering why people aren’t talking about it that much. But hey, here I am hosting a blog tour for the book since I really want others to read about this book. Also have you seen the cover? I know you have, but scroll up and take a second look. Beautiful yeah? Also a POC on the cover!!!

It started a little slow but it’s definitely interesting and I love the character’s voice. The pacing is the only issue I have and it’s a little sad I can’t say much because I might spoil it for you, but this book is heartbreaking but I love it. The emotions were raw and its portrayal is definitely amazing.

I love how characters, even they weren’t all given complexities, were shown with depth and are multidimensional. It’s so refreshing to be able to read this book because of the little distress I had with the last one I’ve read. I also love the way how the story was narrated in two timelines, before and after Addie’s accident.

The lines blur from reality when Overton Clinic got involved since they had this way of erasing memory, and it’s really interesting to have this concept be involved in a contemporary. It’s really thought-provoking as well, because reading this will get you thinking what to do if  you’re in Addie’s shoes.

I really enjoyed the ending of the story. It’s very realistic and again, heartbreaking, but it’s really satisfying. I wouldn’t end it other way.

This is a debut novel from Sarah Everett, and honestly with the way she writes, I’m gonna have to be on the lookout for her upcoming books. You should too!



Sarah Everett is the author of EVERYONE WE’VE BEEN (out Oct 4, 2016) and a second untitled novel that she is still hard at work on (both from Knopf/Penguin Random House). She remembers growing up in enchanted forests, on desert islands and inside a magical wardrobe. She would only ever erase her memory of past karaoke performances and certain fashion choices. Her interests include science, Friends, tennis, and reading. She currently lives in Canada where she attends graduate school and writes YA novels.


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Check out upcoming reviews from our tour participants:

October 12th – Read by Nicka
October 13th – Stay Bookish
October 14th – Book Freak Revelations
October 15th – The Ultimate Fangirl
October 16th – Books and Photographs