Review: Faking Normal by Courtney C. Stevens

15726915Genre: YA Contemporary
Published: February 25, 2014 by HarperCollins Children’s Books
Length: 322 pages
Source: HarperCollins (ARC)

“Alexi Littrell hasn’t told anyone what happened to her over the summer. Ashamed and embarrassed, she hides in her closet and compulsively scratches the back of her neck, trying to make the outside hurt more than the inside does.

When Bodee Lennox, the quiet and awkward boy next door, comes to live with the Littrells, Alexi discovers an unlikely friend in “the Kool-Aid Kid,” who has secrets of his own. As they lean on each other for support, Alexi gives him the strength to deal with his past, and Bodee helps her find the courage to finally face the truth.


Faking Normal is written in first person point of view of Alexi Littrell, our female protagonist who has been keeping a secret that happened during summer. She’s the type of person who has a smile on the outside but a frown on the inside. What I really liked about Faking Normal was how the characters developed throughout the novel. I love how Alexi grew confidence and began to know who she was. She’s also a very relatable character because I think a lot of people have encountered a situation where there is a secret that they are ashamed or embarrassed to tell someone very close to them, but it is needed. I love how I was able to feel what she was feeling whether it be happiness, sadness, excitement, anxiousness, you name it. I also love how her and Bodee share a special relationship. He is also going through a hard time, and I love how even though he’s going through a rough time, he constantly cheers and supports Alexi. He’s one of those people who puts others first before himself.

The supporting characters are well developed as well. I like how Alexi’s and Bodee’s family are not just “there”. They actually contribute to the story and aren’t just bystanders. Alexi has a much older sister (Kayla) is easily bad tempered which is why Alexi and Kayla fight often, but I like how they still got each other’s backs at the end. The  only thing I did not like was how some of the supporting characters are clichéd (i.e. drunk football players and popular girls who are depicted as comely and boy crazy). I think it is because the author wants to emphasize that Alexi is far different from these people or maybe because Alexi wants to escape her problem so bad that she decides to just act like a ‘normal’, cliched teenager because a cliched teenager’s problems are finding a prom date and who’s with who, right? Ugh. Other than that, the book was very well written. This is a book where once you start reading, it’s hard to put it down. You will find yourself immersed into the story, and before you know it, you’ve already finished the book.


I Spy a Blog Tag

Hey everyone! First of all, sorry for being MIA. I was in a low key hiatus and it might not look like it, but I was gone for almost 2 months. All these reviews posted were scheduled at the month of December-January. I just did not feel like blogging and reading anymore, but now I’m slowly coming back from my big slump. Also, I’ve been kind of bored of doing book reviews and all that stuff lately so I thought why not create something fun like a tag?

Basically I Spy a Blog tag will have 10 questions, and you have to answer them and hopefully you will find new awesome blogs to stalk ;) To make it more challenging, you cannot use the same blogs as your answer as the person who tagged you.

1. I spy a blog that is a WordPress user.
I recently discovered The Sunflower Pages and her blog is so cute! You all should check it out.

2. I spy a blog that is a Blogger user.
Looking for the Panacea has a wonderful blog, plus, she’s currently doing a Lola and the Boy Next Door read-a-long.

3. I spy a blog that has a colorful layout.
Books, Etc. has a really fun and colorful layout!

4. I spy a blog that is 7 months old or older.
I recently discovered YA Reads and they have such a cool site!

5. I spy a blog that offers blogging tips and tutorials.
These Paper Hearts (used to be Hopeless Romantics) offers great blogging tips and tricks.

6. I spy a blog that has a blog roll.
Constellation Chronicles has lots of awesome blogs on her blog roll!

7. I spy a blog that has more than 1 blogger running the blog.
Readers in Wonderland is run by two fabulous bloggers, Alise and Bec. You guys should definitely check out their blog!

8. I spy a blog that shows upcoming book releases.
Book Nerd Canada got you covered so you definitely need to check out her blog!

9. I spy a blog that currently has a giveaway.
Eater of Books currently has lots of giveaways like ARCs and gift cards that you should enter.

10. Now tag 4 bloggers!
I tag:
Mel @ The Daily Prophecy
Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity
Alise @ Readers in Wonderland
Sunny @ A Sunny Spot

Brief or Long Posts? {Discuss #13}


I’ve always wondered if you guys prefer posts that are brief or long?

Why I ♡ Brief Posts

+ For me, I’m a “team brief posts” all the way because I love it when a post is just straightforward and concise. I always try to do that with my discussion posts and review posts. I just want to get onto my point because I know most of us bloggers are very busy. I don’t want to take too much of your time, and I also want you to have time to visit other blogs.
+ I also love brief posts because once a post is really long, I lose interest and get bored.
+ If it’s a long post, it has to be very interesting and intriguing.
+ I don’t hate long posts; I’m just saying that I do read long posts, but I don’t finish reading them or I just skim it whereas in brief posts, I read every single word.

What’s a brief post?

For me, a brief post is something that is three paragraphs or less (each paragraph having about 4-8 sentences).


Do you have a preference? If so, why do you prefer that over the other?

Review: Judgement (Deck of Lies #4) by Jade Varden

16178099 Genre: YA Mystery
Published: November 27, 2012
Series: #4 (Deck of Lies)
Length: 260 pages
Source: bought (at Barnes & Noble)

Cashing Out

Do I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?

How can I, when the truth will destroy us all? Now that I’ve started telling lies, I can’t stop. Not until all this is over, and I’m free of the family that never felt like mine. Maybe it’s wrong. Maybe I’m a bad person.

But it’s definitely the only way I’m ever going to escape them. I have to take the opportunity, no matter how terrible it is…don’t I?


*Sighs*. Where do I freaking begin? I seriously do not know how I’m going to explain all the feels to you in WORDS. That’s just impossible! This book is such a FANTASTIC conclusion to the Deck of Lies series. Round of applause to our amazing author, Jade Varden! I read this amazing book in one day. I read it until my eyes were twitching and watery because it was such a page-turner (like the rest of the books in the series). First of all, I love how vague the summary is! I think it was wise for the summary to be vague because there are just so many mysteries and plot twists in this whole series from page 1. Each book just got better and better, and I think Judgement is the best out of all.

This book is written in first person point of view of Rain Ramey, a junior in high school who’s life was basically a lie. She’s been through so many crap and I LOVE how she changed from the first book until the last one. Jade Varden did a fabulous job on developing her characters. The romance was also cute, and it did not overpower the main plot which is awesome! What I love the most about this book are the plot effin’ twists. THERE ARE SO MANY! Just go read the book guys, PLEASE! Judgement is about Rain currently waiting in her cell in jail for her trial for a murder she did not even commit. The jail part was unrealistic though, but it did not really bother me.  But the court scenes…Oh my gosh, the court scenes were freakin HILARIOUS but SCARY! You guys should have seen how tense I was because it was freaking INTENSE, but funny at the same time because the people that were testifying were being witty! It was soooo funny to see the judge pissed at them, and how the lawyers were getting HEATED!

Overall I really love how the story was wrapped up. I thought it was well-done! If you are looking for a book that can get you out from your reading slump, this series is the ONE. It has mystery, adventure, plot twists (for like the hundredth time), cute romance, and lots of funny court scenes! So yes, just go read this series because it’s one of the best out there! GO, NOW!

Where Do Your Ideas Pop Up? {Discuss #12}


Today’s discussion post is a very brief and straightforward topic. I am going to reveal a strange fact about me. Maybe for you guys your ideas pop up out of nowhere, but for me, it always comes up when I’m either:

a) taking a shower
b) brushing my teeth
c) right before I go to bed

It’s really weird. Every time I’m doing those things, I end up getting an idea on what to write on my discussion posts, book hauls, and other blog stuff.


It’s so weird! I hope I’m not the only one? I’m really curious of when you guys think of ideas for you blogs.

Review: Death Sworn (Death Sworn #1) by Leah Cypess

13549218 Genre: YA Fantasy
Published: March 4, 2014 by Greenwillow
Series: #1 (Death Sworn)
Length: 352 pages
Source: Greenwillow (ARC)

When Ileni lost her magic, she lost everything: her place in society, her purpose in life, and the man she had expected to spend her life with. So when the Elders sent her to be magic tutor to a secret sect of assassins, she went willingly, even though the last two tutors had died under mysterious circumstances.

But beneath the assassins’ caves, Ileni will discover a new place and a new purpose… and a new and dangerous love. She will struggle to keep her lost magic a secret while teaching it to her deadly students, and to find out what happened to the two tutors who preceded her. But what she discovers will change not only her future, but the future of her people, the assassins… and possibly the entire world.


Death Sworn is a fantastic start to the series. I’m not someone who reads fantasy books often so I am surprised that I really liked this book. It is told in 3rd person point of view of Ileni, a sorcerer who was assigned to become the assassins’ teacher. One of the things I found weird was why was Ileni teaching the assassins if she was the same age as them? I just found that a bit weird and lacking details. What I loved about this book is that it’s so easy to get into the story. The writing style is really good, and I love how there is already a mystery from the beginning of the book.

The other weird thing I found in this book was the romance. It was cute at times, but it was sort of insta-lovey. It did not really bother me though because the book was focused on the mystery almost all of the time. The world building is good, but I wish there was more explanation and background. Basically these assassins and sorcerers lived in a kingdom and they are trying to overthrow the ruler. The sorcerers has their own community while the assassins also has their own community.

Overall it was a great fantasy read. If you are looking for a book that will have your nose glued on from the beginning,  and some good mystery, then I highly recommend Death Sworn.

4 of 5

Review: Mind Games (Mind Games #1) by Kiersten White

12578294 Genre: YA Paranormal
Published: December 3, 2013 by HarperTeen
Series: #1 (Mind Games)
Length: 237 pages
Source: bought (at Barnes and Noble)

Fia was born with flawless instincts. Her first impulse, her gut feeling, is always exactly right. Her sister, Annie, is blind to the world around her—except when her mind is gripped by strange visions of the future. 

Trapped in a school that uses girls with extraordinary powers as tools for corporate espionage, Annie and Fia are forced to choose over and over between using their abilities in twisted, unthinkable ways…or risking each other’s lives by refusing to obey.


This is one of the most interesting and unique book I’ve ever read. I really love the concept of how Fia’s gut feelings are always right, and that her sister, Annie is blind, yet, she can see the future. It’s told in 1st person point of view of Fia and Annie, but there’s is also ‘then’ and ‘now’ which wasn’t confusing at all. Sometimes I would get confused on who was telling the story though because Annie and Fia sounded alike. But at the beginning of the chapter, it will say something like “Annie: Now”. I thought it was also neat that the author did that ‘then’ and ‘now’ point of views because it helped me realize what these two sisters were like before all the mess came in their lives.

I also like the concept of having these unique people called SEERS (people who can see the future like Annie), READER (people who can read other people’s thoughts) and FEELERS (people who can sense other people’s emotions). It kind of reminds me of the Under the Never Sky trilogy.

Although this book is not lengthy, the story did not feel short. It was so fast paced, action packed, and exciting! I also enjoyed the twist in the romance, and I like how it did not overtake the main plot. Overall I would definitely recommend Mind Games if you want to read an action packed book. The only thing that I thought could’ve been developed more was the world building. Other than that, it was a great read!

4 of 5

Mistwalker by Saundra Mitchell

11974142 Genre: YA Paranormal
Published: February 4, 2014 by Harcourt Children’s Books
Length: 322 pages
Source: Harcourt Children’s Books (ARC)

When Willa Dixon’s brother dies on the family lobster boat, her father forbids Willa from stepping foot on the deck again. With her family suffering, she’ll do anything to help out—even visiting the Grey Man.

Everyone in her small Maine town knows of this legendary spirit who haunts the lighthouse, controlling the fog and the fate of any vessel within his reach. But what Willa finds in the lighthouse isn’t a spirit at all, but a young man trapped inside until he collects one thousand souls.

Desperate to escape his cursed existence, Grey tries to seduce Willa to take his place. With her life on land in shambles, will she sacrifice herself?


I really found this book weird. By the sound of the summary, I thought it was going to be about Willa going to an adventure into seeking the Grey Man for help. Instead, what I got out from this book is that there are two plots: Willa helping out her family, and the Grey Man looking for someone to take his place. I think the whole two plots thing just threw me off. I feel like the story wasn’t in-depth enough since it has two plots.

This book is told in first person point of view of Willa and the Grey Man. I found the characters unusual as well. Although I understood Willa’s actions and decisions, sometimes I just did not understand why she would do what she did. I found myself confused and wondering why she did that which made me kept on reading, but my questions weren’t answered. The Grey Man was a pretty weird character too. The author gave us a very brief background which left me unsatisfied. Like, who the heck are you? I also found the parents very weird. Like Willa, I don’t understand at times why they acted a certain way. I needed more explanation. I feel like the author assumes that the readers understand what she’s trying to convey within a snap.

Overall this book was just weird in general. It would have been so much better if the situations were elaborated, and if there were some more background to the Grey Man. After reading the book, I was left thinking, “what did I just read?” I knew the basic plots, but things just did not wrap up. There were just some weird events that I thought was irrelevant or confusing. It was a so-so book. Other people liked it, so if you want to read it, my suggestion to you is to borrow it from the library.

February 2014 TBR

TBR (to-be-read) is a feature here in Little Book Star where I post books that I will be reading for this month.

Wuthering HeightsMistwalker125783701723380013549218161780991861973117565845

This is a bit late, but um, oh well. Better late than never, right?

I am currently reading Wuthering Heights, All That Glows, and Beyond Our Stars. I already finished reading Death Sworn, Mistwalker, and Judgement so expect a review soon!

– what are YOU reading this month? –

Favorite and Least Favorite Posts {Discuss #11}


I know other bloggers have their favorite and least favorite type of posts, so in this discussion, I will share you my favorites and least favorites type of posts in order with an explanation of why I like/don’t like them. Remember, these are just my opinions and there are no right or wrong answer!


1. Discussion posts

  • there are lots of topics to write about so it’s easy to write them
  • very interesting to read
  • easy for others to jump into the conversation & interact

2. TBR (to-be-read) posts

  • I’m always interested to see what others are reading
  • a post I enjoy doing, plus it’s easy to compose one
  • see if you and that blogger are reading the same books for that month/week. If so, both of you can even (maybe) read together

3. Book hauls

  • I love seeing what others got!
  • I can see if we have the same taste in books
  • I just get really excited for the people who received books

4. Reviews

  • I’m very interested in reading others’ thoughts on a certain book
  • I like them because it’s easy for me to see if that book is a yay or nay

5. Wrap up posts (Weekly & Monthly)

  • I don’t do wrap ups but I do enjoy reading them
  • I like reading about the blogger’s progress during that week/month.
  • I love it when the post also includes other posts that happened in the blogosphere


1. Book blitz

  • I’m just not interested in them
  • Sometimes I feel like they are filler posts  (“oh I don’t have anything to post so I’ll just do that”)
  • I want to read a book blitz post b/c you (the blogger who posted that blitz) is interested in that book, not because you have nothing to post

2. Excerpt posts

  • I skip those 98% of the time
  • I don’t even read them except if it’s a book I’m dying to read

3. Memes (except STS)

  • Again, just not interested
  • I feel like sometimes they are just filler posts, too
  • Sorry, but sometimes they just bore me
  • It turns me off when blogs post memes four times in a row

4. Cover reveals

  • Sometimes I do enjoy those posts, but most of the time no
  • It’s difficult to interact especially when the book cover is ‘meh’


Do you have a favorite or/and least favorite type of post? If so, leave down in the comments and tell me why!

Well hello there! Thank you so much for stopping by. Little Book Star is a young adult book blog ran by Leigh, a 17 year old avid reader. This blog consists of book reviews, giveaways, author interviews, and more! Feel free to explore!

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