Book Review- A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder

A Good Girl's Guide to MurderAs you may or may not know, I love murder mysteries. I don’t read them very often, but when I get my hands on a good one, I become obsessively tangled in the lives of the characters and the mystery, and make no mistake, A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is no exception.  It was funny and thrilling at the same time, and I felt really connected to the characters in a way that I haven’t felt in a long while. I shipped Pippa and Ravi with such intensity it was weird, and I literally said ‘YES!’ out loud when *MINI SPOILER ALERT* we find out that they start dating in the end.

Synopsis: Pippa is the heroine of the story, a nerdy teenage girl at the brink of a life-changing event- leaving for university. Pippa is nothing of not curious, so when the opportunity arises for her to investigate a murder that shattered her hometown five years previously, she jumps at it. Enter  Ravi Singh, the secluded brother of Sal, cut off from the rest of the town for fear of constant judgment. It’s only when Pippa approaches him that they embark on a dangerous and thrilling adventure that would change their lives forever. Also, let’s not forget their adorable little ship-worthy moments 🙂 Actually, that’s another thing that I appreciated- the fact that their chemistry wasn’t cringey or forced, and didn’t get in the way of the story; it was well-paced and full of banter.

Fun fact-  I was so obsessed, ahem, intrigued, that I actually wrote down all my theories and possible outcomes. So thank you, Holly Jackson, for reigniting my appreciation for a good whodunnit. I can’t wait to read more of your work.

This book in three words- Mystery-Murder-Justice

-Hawi 🙂


Book Review- Little Fires Everywhere

lfeI am seriously in love with this book. It hasn’t been this good since Ethan’s Voice, and if you’ve been around for a while, you know that that’s saying something. I raved about that book here-

It was so well-written, and handled politically and socially important topics both delicately and confidently. It was obvious as a reader that the book wasn’t just about a single mum who moved into a high-class town, but it juggled race, power and prejudice with astounding ease. I felt very much absorbed, and it had me absolutely hooked in the events of this chaotic masterpiece.

Synopsis- When the intrigued Elena Richardson lets single mother and passionate photographer Mia and her daughter Pearl rent a flat she owns in the meticulously organised and idyllic town of Shaker Heights, she doesn’t know that she has set off a chain of events that will change the lives of both the Richardsons and the Warrens forever. The Richardson children are inexplicably drawn to Pearl and Mia, but Mia’s past and blatant disregard for the town’s careful rules threaten to disrupt the peace.  The truths that will be unearthed will affect everyone in the tangled lives of the two households.

What I especially loved was that it was so different to mainstream YA plotlines. It’s the kind of book you think about, even way after you’ve finished it. The plot is just so relevant to so many modern issues.

This book in three words-  Politics-Family-History

Thanks for reading!

Book Review- Clean

CleanIt’ s a dirty business getting clean.

Clean is just one of those books that grabs you, and doesn’t  really let go. I found myself thinking about the lives of the characters, and how messily and yet beautifully their lives intertwine, and patch into place.

Lexi doesn’t think she is a drug addict. She just does it for fun. Her brother Nikolai, however, doesn’t share the same opinion, and when she almost overdoses, she leaves him with no choice but to send her to Clarity, a discreet, secluded centre for addicts. As Lexi grows to feel comfortable there, she meets other inmates- a set of young adults who each have problems- and secrets- of their own, but still manage to create a lifelong friendship and aid each-other in recovery.

I thought that this book was so poignant and beautiful; I was very much attached to the various characters and how they moved forward, leaving their security behind them.

This book in three words: Self-Worth – Insecurity – Growing


Hawi xx

Book Review- By Your Side

Ah, anoBy Your Sidether month, another YA novel. Sometimes I feel like I have a unhealthy reliance on YA Romance to support my happiness, but it is my happy place. Leave me be.

This is the first book I’ve read by Kasie West, and as far as first impressions go, it doesn’t get much better than this one. I was intrigued, and the gripped, and then emotionally attached on an almost unhealthy level. Seriously though, it was a real heart-throb and I couldn’t get enough.

Autumn Collins, a quiet but sociable teenaged girl, likes Jeff. For months, they’ve been going back and forth and she finally feels like they’re getting somewhere. Until she gets stuck for the weekend in the local library with Dax Miller, a boy with a rep. As they go from cold silence to understanding, Autumn finds herself more happy and relaxed than she’s ever been. But what happens when they leave the library, and she gets back to her old life, her old love?

I thought this was an extraordinarily good book, one of the best I’ve read in 2019, so if you like YA romance, then I recommend this.

This book in three words: Commitment – Secrets – Self-Confidence

Thanks for reading!

Book Review- Love Song

As you have probablylove song gathered from various other posts, I absolutely love romantic YA literature. You could even say that it was the basis of this very blog, amongst my love for dystopian fiction- my two favourite things combine.

Love Song is a beautiful and uplifting book, a favourite of mine that I was trying to hunt down for a century until the other day, where I saw it sitting on my school library bookshelf.

Nina is a 17-year-old girl from Croydon, England. She is focused and practical and absolutely doesn’t engage in any form of romance since her boyfriend Jez cruelly left her when she needed him the most.

In an unexpected turn of events, she ends up becoming the personal assistant to the Sigrid Santorini- reality TV star and girlfriend of Jamie Maldon, the lead singer in the internationally acclaimed band the Point. Luckily, she’s not the type of girl to fall for him, not after what happened. Absolutely not. No way.

This heart-warming and beautiful novel is a tribute to loving again.

This book in three words: Music- Heartbreak- Healing

Thanks for reading!


Book Review- The Princess Diaries

I must foreword this by making a very clear statement- The Princess Diaries series is not a normal chick-lit series. It is AMAZING. Not only does it have romantic elements, but also is very educational. Mia Thermopolis and her friends are all very opinionated and well-spoken individuals, and defy stereotypes for being teenagers and geeks. She should be an inspiration to all girls. Additionally, her views are not just complaints; she used her publicity to make issues that mattered to her known, like the cruel system of American high school and animal rights.

I am thrilled that there are books like this in the world. Simple things that adults wouldn’t think about twice are highlighted as issues for very valid reasons. The women in the story are equal to the men and there are no mindless idiots meandering here and there with nothing on their minds but romance (even Tina Hakim-Baba thinks about other things. Sometimes.).

Mia’s world is a wonderful and unique place and I really invite you (whether you’re an adult or teenager) to come and join the club. The only bad part is when it finishes and you just wonder what you are going to do with your life from that moment forward. Other than reading it again.

So, in case you haven’t realised, I RECOMMEND THIS BOOK TO ANYONE WITH A BRAIN.

I hope you enjoyed this post and thanks for reading.


Book Review- Paper Butterflies

If there was one book I could give to every single person in the world, one book to share with everyone, it would be Paper Butterflies. It is absolutely breathtaking, it will make your heart break and your eyes weep and your mind think. There are  honestly very few words that have been invented to describe the pure genius this book has been written with, but I will do my best to capture it. I’m not really much of a crier bu t this book had me sobbing like a baby.

June’s life is a brutal one- when her dad is home, all seems well. When he leaves, though, she is at the non-existing mercy of her stepmother, a white woman who despises everything about her, from her corkscrew curls to her dark skin. Then June meets Blister, a boy from a loud, loving family. When she is with him, she feels free, almost like she can fly away from her house, only to be dragged back to reality every time she has to walk away. Scared stiff of the consequences, June has never told anyone about her dangerous reality. For how much longer can a paper butterfly stand underneath the immense weight of it all before it tears?

I am imploring you to read this book. It is currently my favourite book and Lisa Heathfield is truly a gifted and unique writer.

Thank you for reading and see you next time!


Book Review- Turtles All The Way Down

tatwdTurtles All The Way Down is simply amazing. It is a true tribute to those suffering from a severe mental illness and an eye-opener to those that don’t.

Aza Holmes is caught in a spiral- an ever-tightening helix of thoughts and emotions that never seem to cease. So when the opportunity arises to earn $100 000 for finding the  fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, Aza is too wrapped up in her own thoughts to care. After the insistent pushing of her best friend Daisy, though, she obliges, and soon is sucked into her past with Pickett’s eldest son, Davis.

As Aza tries to gain control of her own head, she finds herself struggling to keep the pieces of her life from falling apart completely.

One thing I found very interesting about this book is her metaphor about spirals, which are representative of her thoughts’ tight grip on her daily life and how that affects her as a person; I found it very original.

I also found her general musings and views on life very and interesting, particularly on pages 1-2 and also 11-12 where she documents her views on the lack of control teenagers have in their lives and how schools leave no space for creativity and expression, but stifle imagination.

This classic to-be is heart-wrenching, thought-provoking and unmissable.

I hope you enjoyed this (slightly lengthy! 😉 ) post.

Hawi xx

Book Review- Girlhood


Sugars and Spice and Scars for Life.

I’ve always loved books that are about female friendship. There is just something so relatable about them, and that always helps in understanding and liking a book.

After her twin Jenna dies from anorexia nervosa, Harper decides to fulfil their childhood dreams and go to boarding school. She makes new friends, and she is happy.

Then she meets Kirsty, a new girl at Duncraggan Academy, who understands her in the way that the others couldn’t; she’d lost a sister, too. But as Harper and Kirsty become closer, more and more strange things appear about Kirsty as she tries to surface from a tangle of lies. Their friendship affects everything around them and unearths their darkest secrets and their deepest pains. Under the enormous strain of guilt and grief, will their friendships survive?

Something interesting about this book is that you don’t find ou the main character’s name for a while. Instead of finding that frustrating, I thought that was pretty interesting because it shows  Harper is so engrossed and possibly overshadowed by her twin that she forgets about herself most of the time.

I really loved it and recommend it if you like YA friendship books.


Book Review- Under Rose-Tainted Skies

Under Rose-Tainted SkiesAs shameful as it is, before reading this beautiful book, I had NO IDEA what agorophobia was. I remeber asking a school librarian, pronouncing it ‘a-goro-phobia’ instead of ‘agro-phobia’. He laughed an explained that it was a fear of ‘outside’, and I was compelled in a way I haven’t been in a long time. I’m not scared of a lot of things; bring on the spiders, snakes and clowns, so I thought it would be really interesting to try it out. And wow, did I treasure that decision.

Norah has agorophobia, and has lived in the four walls of her house for a long time. The only time she ever goes out is when she needs to see her therapist, and it usually doesn’t end well. Combine that with and OCD neat-freak, and you have a withdrawn, confusing/confused teenager who contributes to the outside world by staring out of her window and scrolling through social media.

So when Luke, a sweet, hot boy arrives next door, Norah is shocked to realise he sees past her mental health and obsessive tidiness. He sees a beautiful, intelligent and witty girl who is worth waiting for, but what will it take for Norah to see herself the way he does, and fully accept how she feels about him?

It was a wonderful, lyrical journey through a path rarely taken, and its uniqueness is both shocking and stunning.

Hope you enjoyed,

Hawi xx