* I didn't make it beyond the first 20 pages.
** I made it to the end, but I either skimmed or skipped large sections.
*** I might have skipped/skimmed, but I liked it and might read it again.
**** I read at least 95% of the book and it was good -- definitely will be reread.
***** I read every word, and I loved it! A favorite.
Exclusively Chloe, by J.A. Yang ***+ I thought this was pretty interesting, though it didn't delve into Chloe's life (and motivations) as much as I would have liked. The story: Chloe is the adopted daughter of two of Hollywood's most famous, but when her parents decide to divorce, Chloe has an identity crisis and wants to find her birth family -- who live close enough that she can switch high schools (and take on a non-famous persona) to find them. (YA contemporary, POC challenge)
Three Witches, by Paula Jolin **** I got to read this in manuscript form, and it was neat to see it as a book. I like the interwoven cultural magicks (like voodoo) the girls look into, and I definitely like the multiple POV narrative. The story: When Aliya's boyfriend dies in a car accident, she's determined to somehow bring him back, enlisting the help of two other girls from their school, all of them seeking Tyler for different reasons. (YA contemporary, POC challenge)
Beautiful Creatures, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl ****+ I really enjoyed this. The setting was perfect, just as I've heard elsewhere. I like the MC (Ethan) and hearing this story from his POV. The ending was a little strange for me (when it slipped into Lena's POV for a time), but I'm definitely looking forward to the next one. The story: Ethan has strange dreams where he's trying to catch a girl's hand -- and when that girl suddenly appears in his small, southern town, it seems like everything changes and nothing about his life before was real. (YA fantasy)
The Maze Runner, by James Dashner ****+ This is another great read! I loved the world building and the mystery -- though the cliff-hanger ending was not my favorite (though I'm so in for the next book). It reminded me a bit of ENDER'S GAME in the group mentality versus survival of the fittest aspects. The story: Thomas finds himself in a strange maze-like place surrounded by other teen boys, none of whom have memories of their life before. As time goes on, he struggles to become one of the maze runners, those who seek for a way out and to learn what's happened to them. When a girl shows up, things begin to change, and it becomes more imperative than ever for Thomas to learn the secrets of this strange place. (YA dystopian)