Book Review: The Living by Matt De La Pena

The LivingBook Review: The Living by Matt De La Pena

Shy thinks he is just going to earn some extra money working for a summer cruise, but when a passenger commits suicide in front of him, his life is forever changed. Everyone wants to know what the passenger said to him before jumping overboard, but Shy just wants to put the whole thing behind him. With people following him, and the girl he likes engaged to someone else, things can’t get any worse…until the tsunami hits.

This book is action from start to finish. Already reading book 2. Lots of interesting plot development and complex issues. That poor kid is going to need some serious therapy. He he.


UGH…I had a few great ones, but I deleted the audio book for space and forgot to get them written down first. There is a hilarious one about when Shy has butterflies in his stomach. You’ll know it when you get there.

Recommended Grades: 9-up (some language)
Genre: Action Adventure
Overall Opinion:  Recommended
Source: Free audiobook thanks to (check out their free audio books in the summer if you haven’t already).

Book Review: Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

cruel beautyBook Review: Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

Nyx must kill the Gentle Lord. She’s know that since she was a child. But as with most stories, it isn’t that easy. When Nyx’s father makes a deal with the Gentle Lord she is promised as his wife when she comes of age. All of her childhood is spent preparing to kill her future husband, knowing that this action will most likely result in her own death.

This is more than just a simple Beauty and the Beast retelling as some reviews suggest. Yes, that is still there, but there is a lot of mythology and relationships build into the story as well. Nyx is complicated, as is the love that soon develops between Nyx and both the Gentle Lord and Shade. I really liked Nyx and appreciated that she was so conflicted, and so rough around the edges. She resents her family and her situation and knows she can be better but isn’t sure if she wants to be or not.

Quote on falling in love: “For a moment I felt like a river running down to his ocean.”

Recommended Grade: High School-Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Overall Opinion: Recommended
Source: audiobook (free from