Review: Everything Beautiful is Not Ruined by Danielle Younge-Ullman

rhgsdfTitle: Everything Beautiful is Not Ruined
Author: Danielle Younge-Ullman
Publisher: Scholastic
UK Release Date: 6th April 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

Ingrid has made a deal with her mother: she gets to go to the school of her choice as long as she completes a three-week wilderness programme. But when Ingrid arrives, she quickly realizes there has been a terrible mistake: there will be no marshmallows or cabins here. Instead, her group will embark on a torturous trek, with almost no guidance from the two counsellors and supplied with only the things they can carry. On top of this, the other teen participants are “at risk youth”, a motley crew of screw-ups, lunatics and delinquents. But as the laborious days go by, and as memories of her complicated past come flooding back, Ingrid must confront the question of whether she shares more in common with these troubled teens than she’s willing to admit.

  • Thank you to Scholastic for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
  • Trigger warnings (highlight them as they contain spoilers): sexual assault, depression, suicide.

So I read this book a really long while ago, back in March when I participated in the blog tour for it (I got to interview the author, Danielle Younge-Ullman, which was cool). However, I recently realised that I hadn’t actually reviewed it in full on my blog (I did mention it in my post on April releases, but that was only a mini paragraph, and hardly enough detail). Seeing as I really enjoyed it, I thought it would be fitting to do a full review with all my thoughts on this excellent book.

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YALC 2017 Haul

At the end of my YALC wrap up, I mentioned that I also wanted to do a YALC haul, because I knew that I had definitely acquired sufficient proofs and books for one. I’m so excited to be sharing this today, as everything looks so good, and hopefully some of you will get excited about these amazing-looking books too! Also, a quick apology for the long gap in between blog posts – I’ve been lacking WiFi for the last few days, and didn’t get the chance to schedule something beforehand, unfortunately.

I thought I’d sort it into three categories: proofs/books won, book swap books, and bought books. This is partially because I think it’ll be well-structured this way, but also because I’m not 100% what I got on each day (I did subcategorise the proof section by day though, as there were a lot of them).

Proofs/Books Won


  • The Taste of Blue Light by Lydia Ruffles – this I got from the great workshop called Art Eats Art, and is about a girl who wakes up in hospital with no memory of her summer.
  • Rules of Rain by Leah Scheier – centres on a sister and her relationship with her twin brother, who has autism.
  • Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu – chosen for the Zoella and Friends Book Club, this is about a girl who starts a feminist campaign.
  • The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven – another one with a feminist twist to it, focused on slut shaming and fighting back.
  • There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins – a very exciting proof I managed to grab, for Stephanie Perkins’ upcoming horror novel; I don’t usually read horror, but had to make an exception for her.
  • The Truth and Lies of Ella Black by Emily Barr – another suspenseful-sounding novel from Emily Barr, this one about secrets, set in Brazil.
  • Blackbird by N D Gomes – a girl went missing at the same time as 5,000 blackbirds dropped dead; her sister is trying to find out what happened.


  • My Side of the Diamond by Sally Gardner – about a girl who mysterious disappeared after jumping off a building and never hitting the ground, and the friend who was left behind.
  • The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert – a girl has to go to the Hazel Wood, the estate of her recently deceased grandmother, and then into her grandmother’s fairytale world, in order to find her lost mother.
  • The Extinction Trials by S. M. Wilson – two teenagers join a mission to steal dinosaur eggs, in a world where there are both dinosaurs and humans roaming the earth.
  • The Sacrifice Box by Martin Stewart – five friends put something in a box and make a pact, but things become sinister when one of them breaks the pact.
  • The Invasion by Peadar Ó Guilín – this is a sequel, to The Call, continuing the story of Nessa and Anto.
  • Everless by Sara Holland – this book is a fantasy novel (it was really cool acquiring it, as we had to ask a girl in a red cloak for some time, and then go to the BKMRK stall at the time on the ticket to get a proof), where time is a currency.
  • Otherworld by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller – what everyone thought was a video game actually turns out to be a new phase of reality.
  • The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli – a girl wants to turn away from the path determined for her, where she is to become the next Iskari, and has to turn to dragons, who she previously captured, to gain her freedom.
  • Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh – this one is about a girl who is talented, but restricted because of her gender. After an attack on a journey, she manages to escape and dresses as a peasant boy to infiltrate the attackers.
  • WaR: Wizards and Robots by and Brian David Johnson – a girl becomes bound up in a rivalry between a wizard and their enemies, the robots – but they need to work together against another threatening force.

(I forgot to take a pictures of these ones, ahh 😦 )

  • This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada – set in a dystopian future where people have technology in their DNA meaning they can change their bodies, and the protagonist is a code-hacking genius.
  • Invictus by Ryan Graudin – a boy is the son of a time-traveller and a Roman gladiator, and embarks on his own adventures through time, crossing paths with an enigmatic girl.
  • The Treatment by C. L. Taylor – a girl tries to work out what is going on at a local boarding school as she thinks something sinister is afoot.
  • Undercover Princess by Connie Glynn – a really exciting looking book, about a girl who switches roles with her roommate and pretends to be a princess.
  • It’s All Absolutely Fine by Ruby Elliot – an illustrated book with cartoons about mental health, bringing some dark humour to it.

Book Swap Books

Swap haul

  • Front Lines by Michael Grant – historical fiction where during WW2, American women were allowed to fight – and three teenage girls decide to sign up to fight.
  • I Have No Secrets by Penny Joelson – a teenager with cerebral palsy witnesses a crime, but is unable to speak up about it.
  • Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake – three sisters are born with unique powers, but once they turn sixteen they have to battle it out for the crown.
  • Kook by Chris Vick – a boy moves to the coast of England, and meets a mysterious girl, who he falls in love with.
  • My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick – there are two neighbouring families, and Samantha wishes she was part of her neighbours’ one, but she does begin a relationship with their son.
  • Girlhood by Cat Clarke – a recently bereaved twin goes to boarding school, and one of her friendships is not quite what it seems.
  • Potter’s Boy by Tony Mitton – attackers are scared away from Ryo’s village after one warrior faces them off, so he decides to become a fearsome warrior too.
  • And Then We Ran by Katy Cannon – two teenagers decide that they want to get married, so run away together.

Bought Books


  • Letters to the Lost by Brigid Kemmerer – two teenagers start to exchange letters via a gravestone, as one of them is recently bereaved.
  • Stargazing for Beginners by Jenny McLachlan – a girl’s mother has left for ten days, leaving her in charge of her baby sister, and she’s got a lost on her mind as she’s also looking to win a competition to visit NASA.
  • S.T.A.G.S. by M. A. Bennett – another boarding school book, this one where things take a sinister twist.

I also had a little bit of general swag – my badge-adorned lanyard, postcards, fans, and other paraphernaliasamplers

I hope that you enjoyed this haul – I know that each little description was rather brief, but there were quite a few to get through, and I didn’t want to make this overly long. Let me know if you’ve read any of these, or if you’re planning to!

Also, there were a lot of boarding school books mentioned; does anyone else think these are a new trend?

YALC 2017 Recap

Today I am very excited to be posting something that I’d been anticipating writing for a while: my YALC 2017 wrap up! In my Christmas bookish haul I said that my main present had been YALC tickets, so this post really has been planned on for a while. I had such a wonderful time, with my sister Bex for all three days, and with our friend Liv as well on the Saturday and Sunday, and I cannot wait to share more about the event.

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My Ideal Reading Space

Something that I think every bookworm has a secret dream of creating is the perfect reading nook. I know that my sister and I have discussed this on many occasions and I have so many thoughts on the matter, so I’m looking at Arhaus‘ selection today to show you my favourite pieces from their site, and hopefully inspiring some of you to think about your own ideal reading space.

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Review: Flight of a Starling by Lisa Heathfield

foasTitle: Flight of a Starling
Author: Lisa Heathfield
Publisher: Electric Monkey
UK Release Date: 29th June 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

Thank you so much to Electric Monkey for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Rita and Lo, sisters and best friends, have spent their lives on the wing – flying through the air in their trapeze act, never staying in one place for long. Behind the greasepaint and the glitter, they know that the true magic is the family they travel with.

Until Lo meets a boy. Suddenly, she wants nothing more than to stay still. And as secrets start to tear apart the close-knit circus community, how far will Lo go to keep her feet on the ground?

Trigger warning (highlight as I have put it in white because it’s also a spoiler): suicide.

Lisa Heathfield is an author who I’m always on the lookout for new books from. Whenever I hear about a new book coming from her, I add it to my TBR – I was so impressed with her fantastic debut, Seed, and with her second book, Paper Butterflies, that I knew I had to read Flight of a Starling too. It definitely had a different tone to her other books, with less of the shock of a horrific world, and she explored similar themes to her other books, but in a completely different way. Overall, I really enjoyed it!

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July TBR

So I haven’t really been posting much recently (does guilty face) as I have had an incredible amount of stuff on, which unfortunately has meant that my usual blogging patterns have gone out the window. Normally, I’d have done a few posts on July releases, my June wrap up, and my June book haul by now, and I don’t think I’m really going to be able to catch up! However, I thought it would still be fun to make a post on my TBR for this month, as I think it’s got some pretty good books on it.

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