Review: One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: One Last Stop by Casey McQuistonOne Last Stop by Casey McQuiston
Published by St. Martin's Griffin on June 1, 2021
Pages: 422
Format: Paperback
Source: the publisher
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From the New York Times bestselling author of Red, White & Royal Blue comes a new romantic comedy that will stop readers in their tracks...

For cynical twenty-three-year-old August, moving to New York City is supposed to prove her right: that things like magic and cinematic love stories don’t exist, and the only smart way to go through life is alone. She can’t imagine how waiting tables at a 24-hour pancake diner and moving in with too many weird roommates could possibly change that. And there’s certainly no chance of her subway commute being anything more than a daily trudge through boredom and electrical failures.

But then, there’s this gorgeous girl on the train.

Jane. Dazzling, charming, mysterious, impossible Jane. Jane with her rough edges and swoopy hair and soft smile, showing up in a leather jacket to save August’s day when she needed it most. August’s subway crush becomes the best part of her day, but pretty soon, she discovers there’s one big problem: Jane doesn’t just look like an old school punk rocker. She’s literally displaced in time from the 1970s, and August is going to have to use everything she tried to leave in her own past to help her. Maybe it’s time to start believing in some things, after all.

Casey McQuiston’s One Last Stop is a magical, sexy, big-hearted romance where the impossible becomes possible as August does everything in her power to save the girl lost in time.

This book was… Everything I wanted and everything I needed. It filled me with love and joy. This book was… Home. I honestly don’t think I can put into words how much I loved this book. It’s just gonna be a bunch of rambling. But I’ll do my best.

I loved August so much. She was a fun, flawed protagonist who really came into her own throughout the novel. She was also super relatable for SO many reasons. I also loved Jane. Being able to go on this journey with her – watching her remember who she was, figuring out who she is, and deciding who she wants to be – was such a fun experience. And, obviously, I loved August and Jane’s relationship from start to finish. It was just.. Perfect. Really, I just loved every single character in this book. The found family trope was STRONG and I don’t really have a single bad thing to say about any of them.

Like, don’t get me wrong. I know this book wasn’t perfect. I know a few people have discussed some flaws – both with the characters and with the plot – they noticed. But I honestly have no interest in digging too deeply into the book’s flaws because, overall, I loved it so much. I really just fell into this world and these characters and just loved being in their heads.

So, yeah… I don’t know that this is much of a review? It’s mostly just me rambling about how amazing the book was? But… I really just loved it so much. Like, I loved everything about it. So. Yeah. Okay, if you managed to get to this point, thank you for sticking around despite my rambling, haha. Now go read a more coherent review! Or just buy the book and read it. You won’t regret it, I promise!


Review: Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Review: Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuistonRed, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
Published by St. Martin's Griffin on May 14, 2019
Pages: 421
Format: Paperback
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First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations. The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince.

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

I don’t think anything I say in this review can truly do this book justice. Like. I don’t even know what to say except that this book was amazing and I’m mad I didn’t read it sooner and it’s 100% one of my favorite books of all time, ever.

The characters. The plot. The writing. There’s nothing about this book I didn’t love. My only gripe is that I want more of this world and these characters. Someone please tell me there’s going to eventually be a sequel because I NEED MORE.

This book was hyped up so much for so long. I think that’s why I waited to read it; I was super excited for it but worried that it might have been over-hyped. I was wrong. So wrong. I wish I’d read it sooner. I’ll def be re-reading it. And Casey is now on my auto-buy list forever and ever. I’m already reading One Last Stop and loving that, too.

I feel like I should say more, but I also feel like this book has been reviewed and discussed like crazy, and you’ve heard it all already. But just know this book is just as good – better – as everyone says it is, and it’s 200% worth the read. I promise you won’t be disappointed!


Review: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani ChokshiThe Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
Published by St. Martin's Griffin on April 26, 2016
Pages: 342
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
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Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you're only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father's kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran's queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar's wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire...

But Akaran has its own secrets -- thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most. . .including herself.

A lush and vivid story that is steeped in Indian folklore and mythology. The Star-Touched Queen is a novel that no reader will soon forget.

I was HIGHLY anticipating The Star-Touched Queen. I’ve been excited for it since before it had a cover and an official synopsis. The title drew me in, as did the description that came with the Publishers Weekly deal announcement. While there were MANY things I loved about this book, it didn’t wow me the way I had hoped. But I don’t think that was the book so much as this slump I’m in…

You see, I seem to be in a Life Slump. All the books I was most excited for in 2016? Not enjoying as much as I’d expected to. And I KNOW it’s not the books, it’s me. Sadly, The Star-Touched Queen was another victim of this Life Slump and it was hit the worst because I was in the middle of reading it when my beloved chocolate lab had to be put to sleep. If you’ve been following my blog for a long time and if you follow me on social media, you know my chocolate lab was my baby. So this was a particularly devastating blow for me – but also one more thing in a string of bad blows in the last year. And my reading has definitely suffered for that – but more about that later (I’m working on a blog post about all this). Back to the review!

Anyway, I still did love many things about this book, including the gorgeous writing and the world. I didn’t dislike the characters but I felt a little detached from them, which was disappointing because I wanted to LOVE them. I’m a huge fan of mythology, though and the Hades/Persephone myth is one of my favorites, so I really loved that aspect of the story and the characters. I also loved seeing the Indian mythology twist on the tale, since I’ve only really read retellings of the Greek mythology version.

Though I didn’t love the characters as much as I’d hoped to, Maya was definitely intriguing. She grew so much from the beginning of the story to the end. This book had a small cast of characters, so saying she had the most character development of all the characters is a bit of a stretch, but it’s the truth. I definitely liked the chemistry between Maya and Amar – the snarkiness and the love-to-hate relationship.

I LOVED this world, especially the Night Bazaar. The Night Bazaar reminded me of the marketplace in Aladdin’s Agrabah, mixed with the darkness and quirkiness of Hercules’s Underworld (Disney’s version of both these places, to clarify) – It was so gorgeous and fantastical! And that’s mostly thanks to Chokshi’s beautiful writing and epic descriptions. I felt like I was in the world, experiencing the story as Maya. Chokshi definitely nailed the idea of “show don’t tell.”

The last ten page of the book were the absolute BEST. I know that seems weird to say, but they were truly my favorite part of the entire book. So much happened, so many things were answered and so many things finally made sense. I might have been a bit disconnected from the characters in the beginning, but I loved the way Maya’s story ended. It was perfection and couldn’t have ended any better or any other way. I know there’s a sequel in the works, but I don’t know if it’s with the same characters or if it’s a companion, but I’m REALLY hoping it’s with Maya and Amar again. I NEED to know what happens next!!!

So, despite my Life Slump effecting some of my enthusiasm for this book, I still did really enjoy it and I would definitely recommend it for anyone who loves mythology. It’s the kind of book that I could see myself reading again, after this Life Slump is over and things have calmed down, and I think I’d enjoy it twice as much! I’m eager to see what Roshani Chokshi comes up with next, whether it be a sequel or companion to this book or something else entirely.