A Double Serving Of ARC Reviews #6 - The One With Dystopian Societies and Racism

Hi Everyone! I finally started NaNoWriMo today, after three days filled with COMPLETE Procrastination (And reading Empire of Storms) and I'm almost at 7K Words TODAY!

I've been getting so many awesome books one NetGalley this year, it's been SO HARD to keep up with them all. That's why, this weekend, I've challenged myself to get through at least FOUR of my pending NetGalley titles! (Maybe it won't happen because #NaNoWriMo, but it's worth a shot)

I have with me today reviews of some of the awesome ARC's I was approved to read - Glitter by Aprilynne Pike and All We Have Left by Wendy Mills! ENJOY!

Title: Glitter (Glitter Duology #1)
Author: Aprilynne Pike
Publication Date: October 25th 2016
Publisher: Random House Books For Young Readers
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 1/2 of the Glitter Duology
I Got A Copy Through: ARC from The Publisher Via NetGalley (THANK YOU!)
Buy Links: Amazon US || Wordery || Barnes and Noble || The Book Depsitory || Google Play Books || Amazon UK
Blurb Description: From #1 New York Times bestselling author Aprilynne Pike comes a truly original new novel—Breaking Bad meets Marie Antoinette in a near-future world where the residents of Versailles live like it’s the eighteenth century and an almost-queen turns to drug dealing to save her own life.  Outside the palace of Versailles, it’s modern day. Inside, the people dress, eat, and act like it’s the eighteenth century—with the added bonus of technology to make court life lavish, privileged, and frivolous. The palace has every indulgence, but for one pretty young thing, it’s about to become a very beautiful prison.When Danica witnesses an act of murder by the young king, her mother makes a cruel power play . . . blackmailing the king into making Dani his queen. When she turns eighteen, Dani will marry the most ruthless and dangerous man of the court. She has six months to escape her terrifying destiny. Six months to raise enough money to disappear into the real world beyond the palace gates.Her ticket out? Glitter. A drug so powerful that a tiny pinch mixed into a pot of rouge or lip gloss can make the wearer hopelessly addicted. Addicted to a drug Dani can sell for more money than she ever dreamed.But in Versailles, secrets are impossible to keep. And the most dangerous secret—falling for a drug dealer outside the palace walls—is one risk she has to take.


Don’t judge a book by its cover? Well, POOSH TO YOU. I’m doing it anyway.

We’re hardwired to like the pretty things (if you’re not, WOW TO YOU, you’re probably a better person than I am) and I’m so exception. And unless you’re blind, it’s quite obvious that Glitter is a GORGEOUS (and I mean OVER THE TOP GORGEOUS) book.

While that was probably what made Glitter catch my eye on NetGalley, the story-line was even more exciting.

Go into the future, invent all the technology you can think of, and then TAN DAN DAAAN – form an 18th century Court filled with Kings and Social Standing and Gowns and Balls and Dukes and Duchesses. IT’S PRETTY MUCH EVERYTHING, RIGHT, for everyone with Regency-like dreams? Combine a sociopathic King, and his young bride willing to resort to selling highly addictive drugs to escape his clutches, you have me a story I cannot resist.

And now, after binge reading the book, here I am. Half amazed, one fourths shocked, one fourths disappointed, but mostly just a bundle of emotions I can’t entangle.

Let me first say – I LOVED THIS WORLD.

I saw a lot of people having trouble trying to put in under a particular genre, but Glitter isn’t one of those easily classifiable books. It’s a futuristic historical novel, and this was ALL PARTS AWESOME. Set in modern day Versailles, bought from Paris, Sonoman-Versailles is a court located in the middle of a modern world, with VERY MORDER TECHNOLOGY. Gone are the days of maids and drawing up baths, but there is Artificial Intelligence – M.A.R.I.E – running the palace instead. With a Board of Directors playing dress up as nobles, and corsets laced by robots, this was ONE GENIUS WORLD.

On the downside though, the characters were MEH.

While I was most enamoured with the world, the characters were something I didn’t particularly fall for. I didn’t:

a)      SEE the big sociopath the King was supposed to be to make Danica Grayson want to endanger loads of lives
b)      I didn’t feel the friendships with Lord Aaron and Molli
c)       I didn’t EVEN feel the chemistry between Saber (?) and Danica

Everything was too superficial, while trying not to be. There was, in fact, not a single character in this book I found myself rooting for.

All in all, a book worth reading ONLY for the world Pike creates! 3 stars! 

Title: All We Have Left
Author: Wendy Mills
Publication Date: August 9th 2016
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's 
Part of a Series?: No, A Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: The Publisher via NetGalley (THANK YOU!)
Blurb Description: Two girls. Two lives. One event that changed them—and the world—forever.
Now: Sixteen-year-old Jesse is used to living with the echoes of the past. After her older brother died in the September 11th attacks, her dad filled their home with anger and grief. When Jesse gets caught up with the wrong crowd, one thoughtless decision turns her life upside down. The only way to make amends is to face the past, starting Jesse on a journey that could reveal the truth about her brother’s death.
Then: In 2001, sixteen-year-old Alia is a proud Muslim—it’s life as a teenager that she finds challenging. After being grounded for a stupid mistake, Alia decides to confront her father at his office in one of the Twin Towers. But when the planes collide into the building, Alia finds herself in danger she could never have imagined. As the flames rage, she has no choice but to trust a boy she’s just met and hope they have enough time to make it out alive.

The minute I read the description for All We Have Left on NetGalley, I knew it was a book I JUST HAD TO HAVE. I’ve never read a 9/11 book except for Jeffery Archer’s False Impressions, and so a young adult book, with a description so gorgeous and a cover to match was on the top of my to read list!
“I realize that maybe everybody’s story is important, because 9/11 didn’t just happen to the people that died, it happened to the entire country.”
Jesse was two years old when the event that changed America happened. The Crash of the Twin Towers. The end of the world as everyone knew it. The event that’s aftermath still goes on today.

Jesse’s brother was in the towers but nobody knows why. Nobody talks about Travis. He’s the black hole in their lives, the one everyone avoids, because Travis with his whole life ahead of him, had brutally lost his lives in the towers that day.

All Travis has become today is how and where he died, and nothing else. 

And Jesse is angry. Angry at being the kid nobody really wants, angry at trying to live her life as small as possible so that she doesn’t get in her parents way. 

Angry at the people that stole her brother away from her; the family she could have had if those people hadn’t ripped them apart.
“With their clumsy stories they are saying: ‘We all felt it. We remember where we were when the world changed.’’
Alia just wanted to convince her father to send her to art school. And so she ran into the North Tower one fine morning, not knowing that her being there would change her life forever.

Told from two viewpoints – Alia in the past, on the day the towers came down and Jesse in the present, as she tries to forgive, understand, move on and grow up – All We Have Left is the most heart-wrenching story I’ve read in a REALLY long while. It highlights the pain of losing someone so unexpectedly, the pain of being someone different and what RELIGION really means, in a way I’ve never seen before.

Wendy Mills is a TRULY gifted writer! I absolutely LOVED how she handled religion and the discrimination that comes with being a part of that religion, I LOVED how it was all done in the viewpoint of teenagers and not preachers, because it just made it more believable and I LOVED how she put out that Muslim, Christian, Hindu or any other, GOD WAS STILL THE SAME.

A gorgeously written book on forgiveness, love, acceptance and moving-on that you need to get your hands on! 4 stars!
What do you think of PRETTY COVERS? Would you read a book with 17th century clothes and social necessities, but in the FUTURE? What is the best book on racism that you've read?
I can't wait to hear from all of you lovely folks!

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