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Mini Reviews – May 2019

43831563Chosen Champion by Elise Kova

Series: Air Awakens: Vortex Visions #2

Rating: 1/5

**I received an e-ARC of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review**

DNF at 30%

I just can’t do it with this series. The original series, Air Awakens, was amazing and I would recommend it to any fantasy lover, but this spin-off sequel series just falls short in every form of the word. I did the majority of my complaining in my review of the first book, but when I started reading the first few chapters of this one I realized just how much I really couldn’t continue with this series. Maybe it isn’t fair of me to rate this without reading the full text, but I’m pretty confident that this is how I’ll feel. The integration of stereotypical fantasy aspects such as elfin and using a different language for magic (both of which were not in the original series) are such a turn-off and feels like an attempt to pander to the audience. Even the characters seem flat and like they’re attempting to be more than they really are. I don’t see myself returning to this series, which is a shame considering the first series was so great.

CoverGirl Gone Viral by Arvin Ahmadi

RATING: 4/5

**I received an Advanced Readers’ Copy of this book from the publisher (PenguinTeen) in order to participate in the blog tour and to give an honest review**

This is one of those books where I went in thinking it would go a completely different direction than it actually did. The premise is essentially that the main character, Opal Hopper, enters a contest to try and face the man that saw her father last, just before he disappeared. But when Opal ends up going viral, she ends up getting a lot more than she bargained for. This book touches on some very interesting aspects including lying, fame, and nostalgia. In this near future, there is a group of people known as “Luds” that essentially hate technology. Opal notices that, even though everyone else claims that technology is the best thing, there is still some deep set nostalgia for the little things in life. After all, cooking a steak doesn’t have the same feel and smell when it’s in VR. Girl Gone Viral basically voiced everything I’ve heard or thought about regarding the truth, people, and technology and even brought in sexual harassment to show just how different people behave when they’re online. It also shows just how obsessed we become with our image and how absorbed we as consumers can become invested in the lives of others. There were so many directions that this book could have taken and during the last hundred pages or so I was wracking by brain to figure out what was going to happen, but the ending was what fell short for me. After such a fabulous beginning and a nail-biting plot points throughout the story, I turned past the last page absolutely certain I was missing the last chapter or that this was going to end up being a series. Overall, I definitely recommend giving this a read, but I wouldn’t set high expectations for the ending.

31450752Because You Love to Hate Me edited by Ameriie

RATING: 2/5

Villains are awesome. They’re usually the type that I gravitate to no matter what the genre is, but this was such a snore. Not only do I absolutely hate the Booktuber portions (I don’t have anything against the Booktubers themselves, I just think they were weak chapters). I didn’t really like any of the stories either. They had weak concepts like Jack and the Beanstock and The Little Mermaid as a siren. A lot of them felt strained and like each author just didn’t know what to write for their given prompt. If you like retellings you might enjoy a few stories in this, but overall I was just really disappointed especially with some of the bigger name authors that wrote books I love.

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Playlist – Girl Gone Viral by Arvin Ahmadi Blog Tour

About the Book

For seventeen-year-old Opal Hopper, code is magic. She builds entire worlds from scratch: Mars craters, shimmering lakes, any virtual experience her heart desires.

But she can’t code her dad back into her life. When he disappeared after her tenth birthday, leaving only a cryptic note, Opal tried desperately to find him. And when he never turned up, she enrolled at a boarding school for technical prodigies and tried to forget.

Until now. Because WAVE, the world’s biggest virtual reality platform, has announced a contest where the winner gets to meet its billionaire founder. The same billionaire who worked closely with Opal’s dad. The one she always believed might know where he went. The one who maybe even murdered him.

What begins as a small data hack to win the contest spirals out of control when Opal goes viral, digging her deeper into a hole of lies, hacks, and manipulation. How far will Opal go for the answers–or is it the attention–she’s wanted for years?


We’re better than the comment sections make us appear. Most of us are decent humans. The problem is, that’s not the kind of narrative that lends itself to scandalous headlines. It’s not what the internet trolls want. Sympathy doesn’t make for entertainment: the memes and spoofs and simulations that attract millions on WAVE.**


Thank you to Penguin Random House for letting me be a part of this tour, Girl Gone Viral is an amazing book.

In honor of Girl Gone Viral coming out yesterday (May 21, 2019), I decided to throw together some songs that you can listen to while you’re reading or to listen to once you finish reading to help you get over that reading hangover!

For those of you that use Spotify, I took the time to make a playlist. Some of these have context from the book, others just reminded me of the story! There’s a wide range of genres from jazz to IDM to pop, so there’s a little something for everyone!

  1. Autumn Leaves by Paul Desmond
  2. Hello World by Robby East
  3. Whatever it Takes by Imagine Dragons
  4. Miracle by The Score
  5. Natural by Imagine Dragons
  6. Into the Storm by BANNERS
  7. Legendary by Welshly Arms
  8. Sanctuary by Welshly Arms
  9. Brain Sweeties by Mogwai
  10. Tech7 by Abfahrt Hinwil
  11. Bulletproof by La Roux
  12. Titanium by David Guetta & Sia
  13. Don’t Stop Me Now by Queen
  14. Rise Up by Andra Day
  15. Outside by Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding
  16. Way Down We Go by KALEO
  17. Easier by Masionair
  18. In My Blood by Shawn Mendes
  19. Army of Me by Björk
  20. Uprising by Muse

About the Author – Arvin Ahmadi

15282152Arvin Ahmadi grew up outside Washington, DC. He graduated from Columbia University and has worked in the tech industry. When he’s not reading or writing books, he can be found watching late-night talk show interviews and editing Wikipedia pages. Down and Across is his first novel, followed by Girl Gone Viral.


Where Can I Buy This Amazing Book?

Well, if you want to learn more about it, read some stellar reviews, and add it to your shelves, I would direct you to Goodreads.

Proceed to one of the following links for your shopping needs:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indigo


Drop in the comments: What songs remind you of Girl Gone Viral?


**Quotes come from the Advanced Readers Copy and should not reflect the final, published copy