Category Archives: Book Reviews

The Circle by Dave Eggers Book Review

When I got my hands on The Circle I was happy to get to read this month. In fact, at the beginning of the year, I was looking for book-to-movie adaptations coming out this year. The Circle was one of them and I had a good feeling of it. I even liked the trailer and being a Tom Hanks fan I knew I wanted to read it. So finally I finished and I will tell you that the book left me with mixed feelings. So let’s get to the review, shall we?

  • Title: The Circle
  • Author: Dave Eggers
  • Year Published: 2014
  • Page Count: 497
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here

Synopsis:

For those that don’t know what The Circle is about, I will tell you. This book focuses on a young woman in her twenties who gets a job of a life time and goes to work to the most powerful tech company. This company which is called The Circle is a combination of Google, Apple, Facebook, Instagram, Reddit, Twitter and pretty much most well-known social media sites that continue to innovate. The main character Mae gets the job as a CE(Customer Experience) and must learn the ropes. She also learns about the value of being on social media and being part of a community. Later she learns the company takes sharing to the max and learns what it means to be under control of a tech company looks like.

My thoughts:

Like I said from the top I was left with mixed feelings. There were many things I liked about the book. For starters, I like the fact that Dave Eggers built this whole utopian world of a company that rules the world with their innovation, and ideas. But I also like how he built the company’s community. Another thing I enjoyed about the book was how it makes you think. It asks great questions like what happens if a tech company has way too much power. It also covers how much should we be in each other’s lives. Lastly, the idea of transparency within a company, people, and even those in power.

That said I do have my problems with the book. And this is mostly aimed at the characters. When comes to main character Mae I felt she was the most irritating character in the book. She starts off as a quiet, private shy girl without tech skills and gets hired to a tech company. But towards the end of the book, she becomes a self-absorbed person that cares more about gaining an audience and is ok with just being brain-washed. I also did not like the fact she never questions anything about the company and just blinding goes along with everything.

I also think the rest of the characters were really flat and felt one dimensional. I think this is due to the fact that everyone disappears a lot throughout the book and appears when you least expect it. The book also never explains anything except leaves me with questions.

Conclusion:

Overall The Circle had its great points to it. And even though I am not a fan of the characters I don’t find the book horrible or dislike it. I found the book very fast paced and it held most of my attention and I liked how it made me think. I also like Dave Eggers built the world that was run by a powerful tech company and showed us what could happen. This was more of a book before a dystopia happens. So that is it for the review on The Circle. Let me know in the comments below on what you think about the book. And what are your thoughts on transparency in the company and do you think there is a point where we draw a line? Until next time keep on reading.

Links:

Buy on Amazon

York by Laura Ruby Book Review

This week I bring you the awesome world of The Shadow Cipher with the first book York by Laura Ruby. This book brings the combination of cipher puzzles, the beauty of architecture in New York and even some steampunk. York was a book that I had so much fun reading. For those.

  • Title: York
  • Series: The Shadow Cipher
  • Author: Laura Ruby
  • Year Published: 2017
  • Page Count: 496 pages
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here
  • Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

In the Laura Ruby’s book York, we start off with the mysterious disappearance of the famous Morningstar Twins who were known for their vision of the buildings in New York City. Years later the Twin’s beautiful architecture slowly go away as well. In order to save the legacy of the famous buildings and solve the mystery, one must solve the cipher puzzle.

In modern day, twins Tess and Theo team up with their friend Jamie to solve cipher puzzle in order to save their building after it was bought by a real estate developer. Later do the kids know that this puzzle takes them on an adventure through the city of New York.

Review

I had so much fun reading this book. The took me on an adventure through the city of New York. I also like the mystery surrounding the cipher puzzle which reminds me of National Treasure but with steampunk elements. The book also gave me a much greater appreciation towards architecture and how we must work hard to preserve old buildings.

The book also is fast pace and there is a ton of action throughout. I also liked the three main characters. The twins Tess and Theo are funny. Like there would be moments they will pick on each other in a sibling kind of way where they will say a ton of funny lines which made me laugh to the point where I was in tears. Literally in tears. I also liked how even though the twins pick on each other they still have this greater bond between them. I also liked Jamie because he is geeky, artsy and also smart. Despite not being an expert in cipher puzzles he also has a way of contributing to problem-solving.

Closing

Overall I really enjoyed reading York and didn’t find many things I didn’t like about. I personally enjoyed the cipher puzzles and the steampunk elements throughout the story. Lastly, I thought the characters were enjoyable and can’t wait to see what happens in the next book. If you are interested in this book I have links below in the link section. Until my next review keep on reading.

LINKS

Buy Book:on Amazon

If you use this link I do get a small comission when item purchased.

The Black Witch Book Review

Hi, guys. Welcome back to another edition of Where Stephanie Reads. I also can’t help but say that the year is going super fast. And now the summer is finally in motion. Well, to start the beginning of summer with a new book review I will be discussing the book The Black Witch. This is a book that recently came this month and has the combination of magic and is character driven.

  • Title: The Black Witch
  • Series: The Black Witch Chronicles
  • Author: Laurie Forest
  • Year Published: 2017
  • Page Count: 601 pages
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here
  • Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

The Black Witch focuses on the granddaughter of a famous legendary Black Witch who saved the Gardnerian people. Unlike her well-known grandmother, the character Elloren doesn’t have her powers. In fact, she pretty is shy and was raised in a small town sheltered by the on-goings of the world. During the story, Elloren and her two brothers get to go to the famous Verpax University to study apothecary. The school that is known to be diverse and made up of students from different regions and different ethnic groups. Soon, Elloren must face the ugly truth that the school is way more divided and the ugly truth of her grandmother’s legacy.

My Thoughts

The Black Witch was so good. I started it on Sunday and finished it this morning. To be honest I didn’t know what it was about but saw thumbnails of the book cover on Booktube and decided to pick it up. I also really liked the cover and it gave me chills. Chills in a good way. The book has a mixture of fantasy world building, magical elements and a female character that was easy to relate to.I like how regardless of Elloren’s struggles with fitting into the world she knew nothing about she kept true to herself. I also like the fact that the book touches topics of prejudice and discrimination.

If you wish to learn more about the book hop over to the bottom to head over to Amazon and until next time keep on reading.

Links:

Your One Word by Evan Carmichael Book Review

Two years I ago I remember started out on this small blog with no plan except to share my progress of a reading challenge from Goodreads. But over the course of the first year, I grew to love reading more than I did and move towards taking my passion to the whole level. I also knew deep down that it was just loving to read but someone that I needed. But despite loving to blog I always wanted to start a booktube channel. But sadly, when I was starting I didn’t have the courage to do so until I recently discovered a YouTube called Evan Carmichael. After watching his videos I got so inspired that decided to pick up one of his books. After reading the book and learning from it I knew that I must start a BookTube. I had a pocket full of excuses on why I didn’t start before but I decided to just do it. The book I am talking about Your One Word.

  • Title: Your One Word
  • Author: Evan Carmichael
  • Year Published: 2016
  • Page Count: 272 pages
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here
  • Author’s Site: Here
  • Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

Your One Word is not just any business book that just gives that tells you how to start a business but does more. It talks about defining that one word that represents you and your business. Which actually I think my main word is Discover because I am always discovering something new. More books and things to learn. The book also helps you find that one word with questions and showing you how you find it. That one personal word that help you build the business and yourself as an entrepreneur.

My Thoughts

I got to say Your One Word became on of my favorite business books. And this fell on my lap in a time when I needed it the most. If you are feeling stuck and not sure whether to take that one idea and going for it this book is going help. This book isn’t like step 1, step 2 and gives pages of false dreams but actually, gives you real guidance. I also like reading about famous well-known entrepreneurs that made it but also what their one word was. I also like how Evan used #believe in his business.I also recommend checking out Evan Carmichael’s YouTube channel if you want to learn more as well. Until my next time keep on reading.

Links:

Buy the Book at: Here
Check out Evan Carmichael’s YouTube Channel at: Here

Freya by Matthew Laurance Book Review

Hi guys, welcome to another post of Where Stephanie Reads. This week I recently read a great book that combines adventure, female power, and Norse Mythology. The book I am talking is Freya by Matthew Laurence. This is the first book in the series of Freya.

  • Title: Freya
  • Author: Matthew Laurence
  • Series: Freya
  • Year Published: 2017
  • Page Count: 239 pages
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here
  • Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

The book Freya centers around the Norse Goddess Freya who is known to be the goddess of love, beauty, war, and death. During the centuries her power fade and she grows weaker due to the fact her believers forgot about her. In the future, she goes by the name of Sarah and hides out in a mental hospital. There she sulks and hides her real identity. Suddenly, she meets Garen who tries to recruit help to find a goddess that roams the world in exchange for followers. Sarah doesn’t want this and turns down his deal. Sadly Garen doesn’t come with an optional bargain so Sarah chooses to flee. With the help of a new friend named Nathan, she goes on the lamb and tries to hide. But lately, she finds out that there are dark secret forces that are lurking in the shadows.

My Thoughts

I thought Freya was fun to read and loved the mixture of different kinds of mythologies. The book took me on a great adventure and surrounded me with Greek gods and kick ass Hawaiian Goddesses. The book also has a villain with twisted secrets that leave you in awe as well. I can’t wait til the next book to come so I can indulge on that. Until my next review keep on reading.


Buy on Amazon

#GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso Book Review

Hi, guys welcome back to Where Stephanie Reads. In this book review, I will be discussing a book I recently read called #GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso. I was really excited to read this book because I recently watched the Netflix show Girlboss based on Sophia’s life and how she started her business. For those who have heard of Sophia Amoruso, she is well-known for her online business Nasty Gal which is online clothing store where she sells vintage.

  • Title: #GirlBoss
  • Author: Sophia Amoruso
  • Year Published: 2014
  • Page Count: 239 pages
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here
  • Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

In #Girlboss, Sophia talks about how she started her business and also shares her experiences. Sophia started out with not a lot of money or should I say broke and then started an eBay store back in the day when Myspace was popular. She named the store Nasty Gal and became a success. But after she got kicked off Ebay and then moved to her own site where she turned her store into a successful clothing store. Sophia becomes the CEO in under 8 years since starting her journey.

My Thoughts

The book was so good that I read it in two days. The is a combination of a business book, and a memoir with humor as well. I enjoyed reading about how Sophia started out at the bottom and then built herself up with just an idea. I also think she got to be one of the smartest people and I liked how regardless of what challenges came her way she kept on going. The book had a ton of advice and I recommend it for anyone who wants to take the plunge to start a business but need the inspiration. My favorite part of the book is that it’s kind of a business book but it more of what Sophia learned on the journey. If you are totally interested in checking it out click on the affiliate links above and until my next post, keep on reading.

Buy on Amazon

Ever the Hunted By Erin Summerill Book Review

  • Title: Ever the Hunted
  • Author: Erin Summerill
  • Year Published: 2017
  • Page Count: 392 pages
  • Series Name: Clash of Kingdoms
  • Buy Book: Amazon
  • Goodreads: Here
  • Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

Ever the Hunted is about a girl who has lost everything. Her best and only friend that she had feelings for up and left without a notice. Then her father who is a legendary bounty hunter was a murdered. All only the girl named Britta is left alone and shunned by the Kingdom of Malam. This leads to Britta trying to do whatever it takes to survive including poaching illegal on the king’s lands. One day Britta is caught poaching and gets arrested. Soon, the king hands Britta a bargain. In order to keep her life, she must find and bring in the man who killed her father. Simple task except when Britta find out it was his apprentice and best friend who disappeared months before. Britta must go on a journey and must deal with how to bring a person she once loved. Can she do this?

My Thoughts

I actually wasn’t sure about this book. I saw this a few times on YouTube and around social media and fell in love with the book cover. I know not to judge a book by it’s cover…but I am a big sucker for books with hand lettering for the design. I also love fantasy and stories where characters go on a quest. I really enjoyed this book; in fact, it was so good that I read it in three days. It was fast paced and had tons of great action. I also appreciated a main female character who was strong and clever. She knew who to get out of horrible situations and never let anyone tear her down. I also enjoyed her interaction with the other character Cohen who is her friend and who was accused of the murder. I thought he was a really interesting character and the opposite of Britta who tends to be on the rational side. Lastly, I enjoyed getting a quick glance at the world building. The world that has medieval elements along with magic. I totally recommend this book to anyone. If you are interested click on the links to check it out. Until my next book review keep on reading.

Buy on Amazon