Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda (Book Review)

The fact that I haven’t read this book by now is honestly kind of strange. But, it seems quite fitting that I’m reading it during Pride Month. The last book I read with an LGBTQ+ main character was The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue and I loved it. Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda was the second book I picked up during last month’s trip to the library.

Fun fact: I love red book covers.
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The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue (Book Review)

*Synopsis*

The year is seventeen hundred and something and Monty is on his way to Paris with his beloved best friend, Percy, and his annoying younger sister, Felicity. He is supposed to go on a year long tour of the continent before coming back home to run his father’s estate. Felicity will be dropped off at finishing school on their way back and Percy will be going off to law school upon their return.

Monty’s reputation as a gambler, drunkard and hedonist precede him. This is his last chance to get into his father’s good graces. All the while, Monty must suppress his true feelings for Percy at all costs and be on his best behavior throughout the trip. Well, if that actually happened, we wouldn’t have this novel.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is definitely something to look out for at your local bookstores.

*Review*

I listened to the audiobook of The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. It was my first read of Booktubeathon and a great way to start the week. I listened to this at 1.25 speed at the beginning then switched over to 1.5 speed as it is a long book and the 1.0 speed is just way too slow for me.

This was an excellent show of diversity. This is the first book I’ve read with an LGBT main character. I am very particular about historical fiction, especially those set in Europe but I was absolutely blown away by this one. A European historical fiction with one of the main characters being dark skinned is incredibly uncommon. Gender roles are discussed heavily in a natural way. It’s so well formatted and the humor is wonderful. The plot just kept getting thicker and thicker.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue has quite the colorful cast of characters. A bear leader, “pirates,” French noblemen, and alchemists are just a few of the kinds of people to be found in this story. Monty, Percy, and Felicity had the best group character development that I’ve seen in a while. The way their relationships with one another evolved were incredibly well done. Family, friendship, and love are central to the novel.

This is a definite 5/5 stars. It very well may have been the best book I’ve read this year.

*Spoilers*

I was shipping Percy and Montague so hard throughout the novel. Their relationship was so complicated and beautiful and I just wanted them to live happily ever after together. That night Felicity told Monty about the way Percy looked at him, I just knew the truth would come out soon enough.

The Sun is Also a Star (Book Review)

*Synopsis*

Daniel is a first-generation Korean-American. His parents are doing all they can in hopes of providing him and his brother Charlie with a better life. Daniel has an interview that could determine the course of his future. Getting into Yale is the first step to becoming a doctor, the profession his parents long for him to pursue.

Natasha is being deported today. Her father’s mistake has caused her undocumented family to be discovered. In the midst of packing, Natasha leaves to try to right her father’s wrong one last time. She is on a mission to preserve the life she lives.

Chance or fate or sheer determinism bring Daniel and Natasha together on this pivotal day.

*Review*

I read this as an audiobook. I loved the voices of Natasha and Daniel, this flowed really well as an audiobook. I used the Overdrive app to borrow this audiobook from my library. It was great for cleaning my room and twisting up my hair since my hands were full.

Life is complex and this book does a great job of displaying the complexity. The story is centered around Natasha and Daniel’s first and possibly only day together. Third person accounts of other individuals mentioned in the story are also given throughout the novel. The ripple affect of one person’s actions is ever present.

I’ve been wanting to read The Sun is Also a Star ever since I read the excerpt in Everything Everything. Nicola Yoon is a master author. I thought the story was incredibly well written. I didn’t agree with everything expressed by the characters but Yoon expresses the opinions of characters without making them offensive towards those who disagree. This book would be great for sparking debate. I would love to see this read in high school classrooms, especially in this social climate.

As a child of an immigrant I could relate to both Daniel and Natasha. The way their parents didn’t completely understand how different being a hyphen America made them. The struggle of interracial dating with parental disapproval is also something I can understand all too well.

*4.5/5 Stars*

I’m so excited to see the movie when it comes out next year. I absolutely love Yara Shahidi. She’s such a wonderful person on and off the screen. I’m so happy she got this major role.

Summer Book Tag

I spotted this on the Thrice Read blog and decided it was worth a shot.

LEMONADE: PICK A BOOK THAT STARTED OFF BITTER BUT THEN GOT BETTER

the sun is also a star

There was a lot of negativity going on at the beginning of this but as the day proceeded, some serious character development went on. I’ll be posting my formal review next month, so keep an eye out for that.

GOLDEN SUN: PICK A BOOK THAT MADE YOU SMILE BEYOND COMPARE

love and first sight

I listened to Love and First Sight as an audio book. While listening, I would close my eyes and smile to myself because of how cute a lot of the scenes and dialogue were.

TROPICAL FLOWERS: PICK A BOOK SET IN A DIFFERENT COUNTRY

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This one’s set in the Motherland.

TREE SHADE: PICK A BOOK WHERE A MYSTERIOUS OR SHADY CHARACTER IS INTRODUCED

still life with tornado

The main character of Still Life with Tornado is just an endless mystery. She’s like a puzzle that’s missing part of the middle.

BEACH SAND: PICK A BOOK THAT WAS GRAINY AND THE PLOT BARELY DEVELOPED

I honestly couldn’t think of something for this. If a book is too confusing or boring, I usually don’t finish it. Leave some suggestions down below!

GREEN GRASS: PICK A CHARACTER(S) THAT WAS FULL OF LIFE, MAKING YOU SMILEthis side of homeI loved Maya Younger and her character was one I could relate too on more levels than one.

WATERMELON: PICK A BOOK THAT HAD SOME JUICY SECRETS

kite-runner

If you haven’t read this before, it’s a must. There are so many layers to The Kite Runner.

SUN HAT: PICK A BOOK WITH A VAST, BIG UNIVERSE/SETTING

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I love A. S. King’s surreal novels, her world building and story line are so creative.

BBQ: PICK A BOOK IN WHICH A CHARACTER WAS PORTRAYED AS A HUNK

twilight

I haven’t read this in YEARS but come on. This book fits the prompt sooo well.

 

I challenge you, yes YOU dear reader to complete this challenge!

Mini Book Haul

I recently went thrift shopping for the first time with my best friend. I never knew how great the deals were on books. We went to Goodwill and then The World of Thrift, it was great. I didn’t spend more than a total of $9 on these books which is a steal. Full reviews coming soon.

The books I purchased were:

sherman alexie

Bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

I’ve been hearing great things about this book for years now. I never read it back in my middle grade days so why not now?

mindy kaling

Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut up about it?”

I have been watching a ton of The Office lately so when I saw this, I just couldn’t resist.

library of souls.jpgA boy with extraordinary powers. An army of deadly monsters. An epic battle for the future of peculiardom.

The adventure that began with Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and continued in Hollow City comes to a thrilling conclusion with Library of Souls.

I read books one and two a few years ago and I’m excited to continue this adventure. My Review of Hollow City

time traveler

A funny, often poignant tale of boy meets girl with a twist: what if one of them couldn’t stop slipping in and out of time? Highly original and imaginative, this debut novel raises questions about life, love, and the effects of time on relationships.

I have committed a terrible bibliographic sin. I watched the movie long before getting the book. For this, I must right my wrong. Even if I have to go through 500 pages to do it.