Saturday, February 27, 2016

Mini-reviews // Six Impossible Things + Prince of Venice Beach

It's February. The time when Chicago, in honor of my birthday earlier this month, covers its streets in grey, dirty, and half melted snow. And even though I'm not in my hometown, I am in a country (Denmark) that celebrates February in a similar way - with fog, drizzly rain, and grey clouds.

So what better way to remind myself of summer than to review two summery reads?

Six Impossible Things by Fiona Wood

23250087Fourteen-year-old nerd-boy Dan Cereill is not quite coping with a reversal of family fortune, moving house, new school hell, a mother with a failing wedding cake business, a just-out gay dad, and an impossible crush on the girl next door.

His life is a mess, but for now he's narrowed it down to just six impossible things...

First of all, let me say this is the first book I've read set in Australia. Wooo!

The main character Dan is absolutely adorable. This may be one of the first books that I thought oh he's such a cute little baby-child awww about a teenage protagonist. Does this mean I'm old? But he likes Thai food and makes literary references so this means that we would 100% be best friends. 

The romance is adorable. You can't help rooting for Dan all the way (though I still don't see why Estelle is so utterly unbelievably desirable?). And Dan's friends were absolutely hilarious and I want them as my friends too.

The writing was super accessible and frank and overall it was just a really pleasant read. Four shiny stars for this shiny book!

The Prince of Venice Beach by Blake Nelson

16635620Robert "'Cali" Callahan is a teen runaway, living on the streets of Venice Beach, California. He's got a pretty sweet life: a treehouse to sleep in, a gang of surf bros, a regular basketball game...even a girl who's maybe-sorta interested in him.

What he doesn't have is a plan.

All that changes when a local cop recommends Cali to a private investigator who is looking for a missing teenager. After all, Cali knows everyone in Venice. But the streets are filled with people who don't want to be found, and when he's hired to find the beautiful Reese Abernathy, who would do anything to stay hidden, Cali must decide where his loyalties truly lie.

So, funnily enough, I read this book while my parents were on a trip to California and they sent me pictures from Venice Beach. It was actually super cool to kind of be able to visualize the setting from the book. And they confirmed that Venice Beach is The Place for homeless/wandering people of all shapes and sizes. It's like it's own microcosmic culture.

That's possibly my favorite part of the book - it really delves into that Venice Beach culture, and even though I hadn't been there with my parents, I still was able to get a pretty good idea of the environment and the people, just from Blake Nelson's writing. I want to say - good worldbuilding! - but this isn't fantasy. Nevertheless, worldbuilding is the only word for it, and Blake Nelson does it marvelously.

In addition, I really liked Cali's voice. He has SUCH PERSONALITY. You see everything so well through his eyes. Also, he's supercool and I want to be his friend. 

It's definitely for a biiit of a younger audience - he IS a runaway and I don't know how well that stands with me? And I have seen it recommended for reluctant readers, which is definitely super valid! All in all, this (really short) book just felt happy and fresh and smelled like saltwater and sand. I happily give the Prince 4 stars!

What's your favorite summery read? And how's the weather in your corner of the world?


  1. The snow is just melting into Spring where I live, but I can't wait for summer!

    1. I can't wait for summer either! I have so many plans :-)


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