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Giveaway Time 📚💖📬

GIVEAWAY TIME!

Hello book lovers! As you may know from my hinted tweets about a special giveaway today, I'm going to be giving away TWO prizes, one right here on my blog and another on twitter. You are free to enter both, if you want and to enter is completely free. The only rules are:

- COMMENT TO ENTER: what is your favourite planet and why? (mine is Saturn!)
- You must be 13+ or have parental permission to enter
- You live at an address where mail will deliver (no PO Boxes)
- You are not a giveaway account (I do check!)
- No cheating, or entering for a friend. Please enter for yourself. I will only send prizes directly to the winners name that they entered with. 
- Have fun! This ends 10th of July.

This giveaway on Pretty Little Memoirs is for the lovely THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR by the lovely Nicola Yoon. If you're interested in the giveaway below, too, don't forget to enter on twitter! All you've got to do is RT and Follow me on there to enter it. 


So don't forget to COMMENT to enter and read the rules to win and head on over to twitter to enter my other giveaway! 

happy reading!
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Book Review: "Royal Bastards" by Andrew Shvarts



Title: Royal Bastards
Author: Andrew Shvarts
Published: May 30th, 2017
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion  
Find the Author: Goodreads 

I received this book for review on my blog! As always, my reviews are fair and unbiased.

Being a bastard blows. Tilla would know. Her father, Lord Kent of the Western Province, loved her as a child, but cast her aside as soon as he had trueborn children.

At sixteen, Tilla spends her days exploring long-forgotten tunnels beneath the castle with her stablehand half brother, Jax, and her nights drinking with the servants, passing out on Jax’s floor while her castle bedroom collects dust. Tilla secretly longs to sit by her father’s side, resplendent in a sparkling gown, enjoying feasts with the rest of the family. Instead, she sits with the other bastards, like Miles of House Hampstedt, an awkward scholar who’s been in love with Tilla since they were children.

Then, at a feast honoring the visiting princess Lyriana, the royal shocks everyone by choosing to sit at the Bastards’ Table. Before she knows it, Tilla is leading the sheltered princess on a late-night escapade. Along with Jax, Miles, and fellow bastard Zell, a Zitochi warrior from the north, they stumble upon a crime they were never meant to witness.

Rebellion is brewing in the west, and a brutal coup leaves Lyriana’s uncle, the Royal Archmagus, dead—with Lyriana next on the list. The group flees for their lives, relentlessly pursued by murderous mercenaries; their own parents have put a price on their heads to prevent the king and his powerful Royal Mages from discovering their treachery.

The bastards band together, realizing they alone have the power to prevent a civil war that will tear their kingdom apart—if they can warn the king in time. And if they can survive the journey . . .

First Thoughts
I am always looking for something a little different to place into my reading habits, and Royal Bastards looked like just the thing. When I was approached about considering it for review, I was SO ready to read it, only sceptical about the title (just because I don't swear, myself, and because I know that it's not the cleanest of words in itself) but I never judge a book by it's title or cover - it's what is inside that matters, anyway. So if the title does offend or bother you, pretty please let me know and I will get it asterisked so that the post title is blanked out partially. 


My Review
Okay, okay, okay. So, Royal Bastards just totally changed everything I thought that a YA Fantasy could be - in the best way ever. I had been talking to a few blogger friends about it, and they were just as hyped by the difference between it and some of the others in the same genre, about how it's just got this kick of reality melted into the Fantasy aspect without distracting from the main focus. It's been very highly anticipated, in fact it's probably one of the fastest I've ever seen people be interested in an upcoming review for my blog. 
Tilla used to be so loved by her father as a child, but nowadays that's just a memory. Once her father discovered he had trueborn children that weren't bastards, he cast her aside. She spends her days living away from the royalty that she's supposed to be dwelling in, and hanging out with her half-brother, Jax, and the other bastards that feel the same way - cast aside and forgotten. Something that struck me straight away was just how funny this novel was? It's got a real laugh-out-loud aspect that you wouldn't expect from Fantasy and I loved that about it. It had these true friendships that through words alone, were crystal clear. When I was halfway through the book, I realised that there would be more books in the series (in a trilogy) and that was a true welcome revelation. But soon enough, I'm back into the action, after learning that Lyriana, a visiting princess, that had befriended the other bastards upon her arrival, was now fearing for her life after they had mistakenly discovered a crime. Now that they are all on the run, with prices on their heads from people they thought they could trust, they're only just learning that there's a whole lot of mayhem and chaos to come from the kingdom.
Just amazing. These teenagers, who could pack quite a punch themselves, were on the run, banded together through all of their vulnerable moments and own troubled backstories. I loved Tilla's voice as our narrator so much, because I could really feel her passion and drive throughout the story. The only thing that niggled at me was the amount of characters to keep up with, but this might get easier now that we've all been introduced to them. I know some people didn't like the love triangle of sorts, but I found it a great element to the book. Love triangles are a hit-or-miss in YA and personally, if you can write it perfectly, it can truly pay off and it did here. 
Overall, Royal Bastards is definitely one of the best Fantasy reads I've read this year. It had lively characters, a bustling adventure of death, chaos and friendship and I seriously cannot wait to read the next in the series. A huge four-star novel with the power to really get Fantasy YA fans involved - I think this series will kick up a storm. 


Rating

Have you read Royal Bastards?

What did you think?

Let me know in the comments or @LittleMemoirs on twitter!

happy reading!
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What I'm Reading This Summer


It seems like only yesterday that I was telling you all about the books that I wanted to read this Spring. Now, Summer has arrived! Bright nights, sandy toes and tan-lines are surely to become a fixture of this Season (remember your SPF, please!), but whisking yourself away doesn't need to be by plane, train or car. Something on your bookshelf - or on my Summer TBR - might just transport you to another world!
Don't forget to tell me what you're reading this Summer. The best way to get involved is to comment here on this post or #ThisSummerPLM on twitter (just click and it will start your tweet!) with your reads! I always respond to everyone. 

Once And For All 
by Sarah Dessen
I am head over heels for Sarah Dessen books! I mean, she is the staple YA Summer read author, right? Her books are just made for those warm nights staring out at the ocean (or at least, pretending you are). I've had my eyes on Once And For All for a little while now and I finally saw it at Waterstones in Bristol, England when I was there for my sisters birthday (shout-out to my sister, 23 Review Street!). This has to be one of the most subtle, yet achingly beautiful covers and blurbs I've read. C'mon, if you haven't got this yet, why?? 
It's set in the world of wedding planning (why am I always reminded of Bride Wars?) and for Sarah's thirteenth novel, she delves into happy, messy and perfect. 


When Dimple Met Rishi
by Sandhya Menon

This is the most talked about YA of the moment. All I've seen on my Goodreads and Instagram feeds is rave reviews for the amazing When Dimple Met Rishi. With that cover (how goofy/cute/intriguing/unique does it look?!) I again spotted it in my favourite bookstore. I don't know why I hadn't got this before, because it was on my TBR, but now that I have it, I can't wait to delve into those pages! It's a Bollywood rom-com! Who wouldn't want to read that?!




Royce Rolls
by Margaret Stohl
I have always been a fan of Margaret Stohl since the Beautiful Creatures days, so seeing her novels that aren't shared with Kami is always a surprise. I kept seeing the cover places and didn't connect the dots that she had wrote Royce Rolls - basically our YA version of the Kardashians meets Reality TV Gold. The cover itself is a work of art (the colours, the ROYCE ROLLS all in gold) and the description is magnetic: a laugh-out-loud LA noir packed with a perfect punch of things everyone loves in YA. This one is going straight onto my nightstand!




Always and Forever, Lara Jean
by Jenny Han
Have you ever just fallen in love with a series, a character or just the way that the author writes these things that speak to your heart? This is how I feel about Jenny Han's Lara Jean series. This is a story about a girl, her heart and the journey of her life. Always and Forever, Lara Jean is the third instalment in the series and I can't say anymore right now because I'm currently halfway through this and don't want to risk spoilers by digging too deep into what happens! What I can say is that Lara Jean is loving senior year, but nothing perfect can stay...a change is coming. 

Currently book-stalking...




I don't own these two yet, but I'm hoping to get my hands on these beauties this Summer! I've always loved a feel-good book, or one with a bigger meaning and sentiment. I've got my eyes on these two in particular! 






Have you read any of the books I want to read this Summer?

Let me know what you thought in the comments or on twitter @LittleMemoirs!

happy reading!
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Pride 2017: "Girl Hearts Girl" by Lucy Sutcliffe




Title: Girl Hearts Girl
Author: Lucy Sutcliffe
Published: June 24th, 2017
Publisher: Scholastic  
Find the Author: Goodreads 

I received this book for review on my blog! As always, my reviews are fair and unbiased.
An inspiring, uplifting and sympathetic story about sexuality and self-acceptance, Lucy Sutcliffe's debut memoir is a personal and moving coming out story. In 2010, at seventeen, Lucy Sutcliffe began an online friendship with Kaelyn, a young veterinary student from Michigan. Within months, they began a long distance relationship, finally meeting in the summer of 2011. Lucy's video montage of their first week spent together in Saint Kitts, which she posted to the couple's YouTube channel, was the first in a series of films documenting their long-distance relationship. Funny, tender and candid, the films attracted them a vast online following. 
Now, for the first time, Lucy's writing about the incredible personal journey she's been on; from never quite wanting the fairy-tale of Prince Charming to realising she was gay at the age of 14, through three years of self-denial to finally coming out to friends and family, to meeting her American girlfriend Kaelyn.
My Review
LGBT books are becoming rightly a huge part of YA literature. One of the first LGBT books I ever read was by Robin Talley and since then, they've become a huge part of my YA loves. Not only was I already cover-stalking Girl Hearts Girl, but I was so eager to get involved in Pride Month - my first year getting properly involved, thanks to Scholastic! I had always had a few ideas of what to do or post and considering having supported LGBT books all year round, I knew that my post had to be extra special to properly draw attention to the importance of LGBT representation in YA books.
Enter Girl Hearts Girl, a story that's actually real and a memoir of all things! Pretty Little Memoirs started because of my own desire to write my memoirs of life, so it's only right that I finally read a YA memoir too. Lucy's story isn't quite the typical YA boy-meets-girl, because Lucy has never been interested in having a Prince Charming whisk her away like in the fairytales. She's known from her early teenage years that she liked girls. But it hasn't always been easy for her. There were patches of denial, before finally coming out to her family and realising that she had to start believing in herself - and stop denying who she was inside. 
But Lucy finds herself in someone else, too. Meeting online when she was seventeen, she started talking with a girl called Kaelyn from America. It's clear, reading about their conversations and honesty with each other that they share a true, raw connection. They meet the summer that followed their first year of talking and since that day, Lucy and Kaelyn's lives changed as they documented their relationship online through social media for the world to see; through highs and lows and the pressures, backlash and frank moments that I can truly feel Lucy's voice echoing in my ear. 
Girl Hearts Girl was a sheer slice of sunshine. As Lucy walks us through her life, I can't help but smile and cry along with her on this extraordinary journey of self-acceptance and the power of love. I can't rate this any higher. A shining example of Pride. 

Rating

Read an extract from GIRL HEARTS GIRL here!


Have you read Girl Hearts Girl?

What did you think?

Let me know in the comments and don't forget to use #ReadwithPride on twitter! 

happy reading!
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Book Review: "The Lines We Cross" by Randa Abdel-Fattah



Title: The Lines We Cross
Author: Randa Abdel-Fattah
Published: May 4th, 2017
Publisher: Scholastic  
Find the Author: Goodreads 

I received this book for review on my blog! As always, my reviews are fair and unbiased.

Boy meets girl. Girl changes everything.

Michael likes to hang out with his friends and play with the latest graphic design software. His parents drag him to rallies held by their anti-immigrant group, which rails against the tide of refugees flooding the country. And it all makes sense to Michael.

Until Mina, a beautiful girl from the other side of the protest lines, shows up at his school, and turns out to be funny, smart—and a Muslim refugee from Afghanistan. Suddenly, his parents’ politics seem much more complicated.

Mina has had a long and dangerous journey fleeing her besieged home in Afghanistan, and now faces a frigid reception at her new prep school, where she is on scholarship. As tensions rise, lines are drawn. Michael has to decide where he stands. Mina has to protect herself and her family. Both have to choose what they want their world to look like.

First Thoughts
As soon as The Lines We Cross landed in my lap (thank you, Scholastic!), I was entranced. Not only did it seem frank from the synopsis, but definitely lifelike. I was eager to dig in and after it ended up on top of my TBR recently, I was SO ready for it. 


My Review
Michael is pretty normal. He likes to hang out with his friends and be a normal Australian teenager. But he can't ignore that his Parent's haven't got the best outlook on life that many millennials have - except he's going along with it, and underneath it all, he knows it's wrong but somehow, he can't pull away from his Parents values on immigrants; because they run a group that's strictly against them. 
Mina, on the other hand, is everything Michael isn't. She's an immigrant who came to Australia as a refugee. She's loved and she's lost so many people close to her after escaping Afghanistan, but when she meets Michael, their lives collide in a strange way, suddenly opening Michael's eyes to the horrid ways his Parents have blinded people with their racist way of life and culture. 
I've never read a book quite like The Lines We Cross. It's political, hard-hitting, true and touching. It's Mina's voice that truly shatters through the stereotypes of supposed dominant cultures and breathes a breath of fresh air into the pages. She's angry at the hurt she feels so deeply and the way that she can't escape the people like Michael's Parents. But despite that, it's Michael that changes the most throughout the novel (despite loving Mina the most). No longer going along with his Parents cruel actions, he has an epiphany that clears his fogged vision. Mina has captured his heart in ways that he hasn't felt before, and that changes everything. 
This is Realistic YA at it's finest. Even though there were parts and points that I didn't necessarily gel with completely, I truly loved The Lines We Cross. It's one of the most unique books I've read this year and truly memorable for the realistic aspects that it touched upon. Overall, this is such a must read because of the society we live in. I loved the way that Randa captured Mina's hurt at feeling that people like Michael's parents thought they were the dominant culture just because they were white. The truth is that we are all equals; no matter what colour your skin is, whether you're straight, gay, bisexual or a man or woman or trans. We were all born equal and if anyone ever tries to tell you that you're not good enough, let me tell you this: you are enough. 

Rating

Have you read The Lines We Cross?

What did you think?

Let me know in the comments or on twitter @LittleMemoirs!

happy reading!
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Book Review: "Windfall" by Jennifer E. Smith

Title: Windfall 
Author: Jennifer E. Smith
Published: May 4th, 2017
Publisher: Pan Macmillan 
Find the Author: Goodreads 

I received this book for review on my blog! As always, my reviews are fair and unbiased.
Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes. 

At first, it seems like a dream come true, especially since the two of them are no strangers to misfortune. As a kid, Alice won the worst kind of lottery possible when her parents died just over a year apart from each other. And Teddy’s father abandoned his family not long after that, leaving them to grapple with his gambling debts. Through it all, Teddy and Alice have leaned on each other. But now, as they negotiate the ripple effects of Teddy’s newfound wealth, a gulf opens between them. And soon, the money starts to feel like more of a curse than a windfall. 

As they try to find their way back to each other, Alice learns more about herself than she ever could have imagined . . . and about the unexpected ways in which luck and love sometimes intersect.
First Thoughts
Jennifer could write a book about anything and I would be right there waiting in line to read it. Her novels have that kind of magical power that just can turn a bad day into a soaring wonder of a moment, escaping into these beautiful worlds she creates. Windfall sounded like a movie to me in my mind, the way I read the blurb. Then I found out it had been optioned for film the other day! How amazing is that?! I'm SO happy for you, Jennifer, if you're reading this (I hope so!).


My Review
Windfall? More like the most wonderful, wonderstruck and absorbingly gorgeous novel of the year. Alice is just the most stand-out, brilliant character and how she's written just gels so effortlessly throughout Windfall. The thing is, Alice hasn't had the best life. Her Parents died not long after each other, and she's been secretly in love with her best friend, Teddy, for as long as she can remember. They've both not had the greatest luck, and that's something that ties them together in this unspoken connection. So when Alice buys Teddy a lottery ticket for his birthday and he wins - and wins big - everything they knew changes completely in an instant, sending their lives into different paths and changes the way their lives used to be. But when you're Alice and Teddy - you have a way of finding your way back to each other, and they are the true stars of this novel, their sheer connection almost 3D through the book pages.
Even though Jennifer's previous books have been amazing, Windfall has stolen my heart completely and utterly. I have a great love for this book and these characters, far greater than I first anticipated. I fell head over heels for Alice and Teddy and the way they love. I laughed and I cried through their words and breathtaking moments filled with hope for the future and characters with the biggest hearts. I turned pages far faster than I could comprehend and I finished Windfall in a day, happy and sad at the same time that it had gone by so fast (I just want to read it again, already!). There's a special kind of something in Jennifer's latest book that makes my heart happy - not just a notion but a firework of feelings; happiness and beauty and hope for everything in life. 
Overall, Jennifer has clearly outdone herself yet again. Just when I thought that This Is What Happy Looks Like, was my favourite Jennifer book, Windfall has come out of the shadows and straight into the spotlight, brimming with heartfelt moments, hope and the power of pure love and friendship. If you're going to delve into one YA read this year, make it this one. Without a doubt, I cannot imagine anyone not loving this book. It has my heart - five stars completely. 


Rating


Have you read Windfall?

What did you think?

Let me know in the comments or at @LittleMemoirs on twitter! 

happy reading!
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A Note From Becca





My thoughts and Prayers are with the victims of the Manchester attacks and those happening in Marawi and across other parts of our World. Pretty Little Memoirs is a place that you may come to talk about anything, so please do let me know if you need anything or just a person to talk to. 

Rest In Peace to the victims of these terrible attacks.

Love,
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