Bullet Point Reviews : A Very Large Expanse of Sea, Foolish Hearts

Hi friends! I hope you’ve all been well. It has been a while since I talked about a couple books I’ve read all at once and today, I thought I’d just do that with two books I’ve read recently and really, really enjoyed.

These books also arrived to my endless TBR thanks to some of my bloggers’ friends recommendations and I can’t thank them enough. Book bloggers have the best recommendations.

πŸ“ Related blog post: 10 books bloggers made me read.

A Very Large Expanse of Sea, Tahereh Mafi

Published by HarperTeen, October 16th, 2018.

I love the Shatter Me series by this author so, so much and was eager to discover what she could do in the contemporary genre and…I wasn’t disappointed.

The biggest thanks to my friend Kat for her warm recommendation!

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I ENJOYED... ❀️

πŸ’­

  • A Very Large Expanse of Sea was not an easy read, at all and yet, that’s one of the things I appreciated the most about it, somehow. It doesn’t shy away from showing us the casual racism, bullying, micro-aggressions happening to Shirin every single day and for that, I think that this book is such an important, necessary read, too.
  • I immediately cared for Shirin, found myself hurting for her, wanting her to be okay. She was such an endearing main character.
  • The romance had my heart just as well and, despite its pushs and pulls, its moments of frustration and times where I just wanted the characters to get together, I also found Shirin’s hesitations and the slow development of the relationship believable, from meeting to slowly, gradually falling in love, this made my soft marshmallow heart happy and melting overall okay.
  • I loved the family! I loved how protective Navid, Shirin’s brother, was and how adorable, too. I also had such a great time with the rest of Shirin’s family, her parents were so so endearing.
  • It was such a quick, engrossing read and, even if it felt so different from Tahereh’s poetic writing in her Shatter Me series, it still was really good and heartbreaking to read, too. It felt so personal.

I HAD A HARD TIME WITH…πŸ’”

πŸ’­

  • I’m a marshmallow and if everything was realistic, I somehow expected a little more from that ending, or something a little more concrete?

OVERALL

Such an important and such a good young adult contemporary, definitely recommending it if you’re looking for a powerful, yet soft book just as well. I loved it.

Final rating: 4 drops!

Trigger warnings: racism, bullying, islamophobia, xenophobia, violence, mention of a dead animal.

Diversity: Muslim cast of main characters, Iranian-American main characters, Lebanese character (Yusef), Bisexual side-character (Bijan), Indian side-character (Amna). Dyslexic main character (Navid). The main character wears the hijab.

Check out these #ownvoices reviews for the book: here and here. If you have an #ownvoices review for this book, feel free to let me know!

Foolish Hearts, Emma Mills

Published by Henry Holt and Co, December 5th, 2017.

I have been meaning to read Emma Mills’ books for a long time now and, I’m so glad I got into them, because I’ve been LOVING THEM a whole lot. Foolish Hearts is, I think, so far, my favorite.

The biggest thanks to everyone talking about Emma Mills (really), I’m just sad I can’t recall all of you.

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I ENJOYED... ❀️

πŸ’­

  • THE FRIENDSHIPS! Emma Mills is officially one of the queens of friendships in YA books okay. I’m not making the rules.
    • I just loved the friendship between Iris and Claudia, an unexpected friendship that developed over the course of the book and ughhhhhhhhh this was easily my favorite part of it all OKAY. They’re bonding over a boysband and if that didn’t speak to my heart then I don’t know what will ever. I adored this okay I could make this whole bullet-point review about them.
  • Oh also the friendship is at the HEART of the book, before the romance so POINTS FOR THAT.
  • Okay I’ll mention something else, so I can talk about the romance. Slow-burning and developing from friends to more, it was freaking adorable and I rooted for them and Gideon was just one soft and adorable, caring and one of the greatest love interests.
  • Claudia really spoke to teenager-me. Not so popular at all, feeling not-so-interesting at all, just plain Regular Claudia. I don’t know, but I could feel myself really relating to her and I loved that about it, too.
  • I couldn’t stop smiling while reading this book. I’m all for books giving me all the happy feels and this one will DEFINITELY make it on a potential upcoming list.
  • The family vibes in this! Claudia’s parents were present (YAY!) and I loved seeing her relationship with her much older sister, soon-to-be-mom as they met on an online role-playing game and played together too. I loved this.

I HAD A HARD TIME WITH...πŸ’”

πŸ’­

  • I…. I honestly am having a hard time pinpointing what went really wrong in this book, because thing is… nothing did. I had a really, really fun time reading Foolish Hearts, yet somehow it didn’t quite hit the “wow” factor for me to rate it higher?

OVERALL

πŸ’­

This was a sweet, soft, adorable contemporary that had me smiling from page one and, friends, I love these kind of books.

Final rating: 4 drops!

Trigger warnings: panic attacks.

Diversity: there is a f/f relationship between two side-characters.

Did you read any of these books? Did you enjoy them, or do you want to read them?

What are some YA contemporaries you’ve read and enjoyed lately? Let me know in comments!

 

 

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Book blogger, travel blogger, writer. πŸ“š |🌍 | πŸ’ž Writing & Communications Graduate. French. Living on love, wanderlust and ya books.

52 thoughts on “Bullet Point Reviews : A Very Large Expanse of Sea, Foolish Hearts

  1. You nailed Foolish Hearts. It had all those good things, but there was something missing. I couldn’t figure out what it was either. I am just going to say Frank Sanger because he made This Adventure Ends. Maybe he needed to be in Foolish Hearts, too. πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m glad these were both good reads for you! I really want to read A Very Large Expanse of Sea – it sounds like such an interesting, if difficult read. I haven’t ever read any of Mafi’s books – I’ve always meant to pick up the Shatter Me series but I haven’t gotten around to it yet!

    I love Emma Mills. First and Then is one of my favourite ever YA contemporaries. It’s just SO CUTE.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohhh, I hope you’ll read some of her books, I personally love the Shatter me series, and found A Very Large Expanse of Sea so good, I’d love to know what you think of that one πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much!! I can’t wait to read everything Emma Mills ever writes πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I DEVOURED A Very Large Expanse of Sea, but weirdly enough I wasn’t drawn in by the romance. I just didn’t feel the chemistry. I still enjoyed the story enough to give the book 5 stars though because I finished that book in about 3 hours!

    And I really need to read Foolish Hearts! It’s the only Emma Mills book I haven’t read and it keeps tempting me when I see it in bookstores!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I can understand that – I feel like so many people weren’t on board with the romance somehow. It didn’t bother me, but I can see where you come from. I’m glad you still loved it πŸ˜€
      Ahhhh yes, read Foolish Hearts! I really, really liked it a lot πŸ˜€
      Thank you so much!! ❀

      Like

  4. I loved Shirin’s story!!! It was so powerful and there were some scenes that were just…wow. I loved her. I am so glad Tahereh Mafi is writing in more genres now ajfdslad she is queen of everything. And Foolish Hearts is one of the ones I’m ashamed I haven’t read yet oops. It’s on the TBR for sure! I love books with friendship and family emphasis so I’m sure I’ll adore it.😍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad of that, too, she could write in every genre, I really love her ahhhh. This book was powerful and hard to read at times, but I loved it πŸ™‚
      I hope you’ll love Foolish Hearts!
      Thank you!! ❀

      Like

  5. Wonderful bullet-point reviews, Marie! I’m SO, SO happy that you enjoyed Foolish Hearts; I knew you’d love it πŸ’“ Ikr, it truly gave me all the happy feels and aahhh, my heart feels so warm just thinking about this wonderful book ☺️ I love the friendships and romance so much!! Ahhh yes, Claudia, Iris, and Gideon have my entire heart πŸ’– And I’m really excited to read A Very Large Expanse of Sea, it sounds like such an important and great book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohh Dezzy thank you so, so much! ❀ ❀ I'm so happy I finally read this book, I loved it very much and I have you to thank for it, partly, so thank you for the recommendation! ❀ ❀
      I hope you'll read A Very Large Expanse of Sea someday, it was such a great read too πŸ˜€
      Thank you so much! I hope you've been okay! ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. yay i’m so happy to hear that! and awww you’re so sweet, thank you πŸ’“πŸ’“ yeah i’ve been doing okay, i’ve just been swamped with schoolwork lol, which is why i haven’t been active in the blogosphere lately πŸ˜… hopefully i can catch up with everything during spring break. anyway, i hope you’ve been doing well, sending you all my love πŸ’–πŸ’–

        Liked by 1 person

  6. AHH, I LOVE THESE REVIEWS, MARIE. ❀ First of all, A Very Large Expanse of Sea has been on my TBR for quite a while and reading this review definitely moved it up quite a bit. XD And then, I adored reading your thoughts on Foolish Hearts! I agree that it was completely amazing to see Claudia and Iris bond over a boy band (yes, I am somewhat of a boy band fangirl, I have quite a few that I LOVE) and then Gideon is possibly the most perfect sunflower to ever exist. Again, lovely post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you so much, Olivia! I’m glad I could move AVLEOS a little higher on your TBR, it was a great book! πŸ™‚
      BOYS BAND FANGIRLING ahhh, Olivia we are soulmates haha. I love this and I love these kind of books so much. Gideon is adorable ahh. ❀
      Thank you! ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I love that both of these books had a good family present because I don’t think you get to see enough family representation in books (maybe it is the books I am reading) but I really like it as I think families are so important and are a big part of my life!!
    It is great that you are loving your experience with Emma Mills– I heard she did great friendships so I am glad you like them!! ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I so agree with you, I sometimes feel like families aren’t too present in ya books and they are so, so important to me too. These two books have great families for sure, I loved that about them πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much for your sweet comment! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I felt like the writing style was so different in the Shatter Me series, but I personally loved both, I hope you’ll give Shatter Me a try sometime πŸ˜€
      Thank you so much for your sweet comment! ❀

      Like

  8. I think it’s interesting that you said you don’t think A Very Large Expanse of Sea was an easy read, because I felt it was too easy. It flowed so easily and was such a quick and light read, even though there were quite a lot of things that should have felt heavier to me, but somehow just didn’t. In the end, I am just glad you liked it and I am sure you would have picked up the book even without my recommendation. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I get what you mean. Reading the book felt… well, easy in the sense that the story flowed so well, and I could read it so quickly, but some moments felt quite heavy to me and just, even micro agressions and tiny things happening left me like, wow, this is horrible haha.
      Thank YOU again for the recommendation, you always have the best ones. ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I can see what you mean as well. These micro-aggressions are terrible and I felt mad/sad on behalf of the characters too sometimes.
        I am glad you feel that way, especially since I don’t read as much as I used to haha (although I am only 1 book behind schedule on Goodreads)

        Liked by 1 person

  9. A Very Large Expanse of Sea’s the best contemporary I’ve read in 2019 so far, Shirin was such a wonderful protagonist. I kind of like open endings, cause they let me imagine a future for the characters 😊 I’ve yet to read Emma Mills, but I love books about friendship so I feel like I really need to! ❀️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m happy you enjoyed it just as well! It was such a good book and… well, open endings can be frustrating, but in a way, I agree, it’s also nice to imagine the ending ourselves this way πŸ™‚
      I hope you’ll give Emma Mills’ books a try, I’ve been loving them all so much! πŸ™‚
      Thank you! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  10. *screams from the rooftop* I love Emma Mills!!! I totally agree that I can’t pinpoint what went wrong with Foolish Hearts either. Because it was just so pure and everything good in this world and I saw myself in Claudia too and the friendship was amazing *deep breath* but it wasn’t super special. It was a four star book when I felt it really could have been a five with an extra sparkle. The dialogue is definitely 5 stars though! And I have yet to read A Very Large Expanse of Sea (I haven’t even read the blurb) but I know it’s gotten amazing reviews so I need to pick it up soon. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I’m so glad you felt the same way – I feel so bad for not being able to pinpoint exactly what was missing, a little spark or something for it to be perfect, but…it was such a good book and yes, the dialogue, LOVED IT! πŸ˜€
      I hope you’ll read A Very Large Expanse of Sea, I really enjoyed it πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much! ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

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