Penguin Random House YA Essentials

I was meant to take a long break from blogging starting 2020 and guess what? I’m already back here. I think there’s something in blogging that never really leaves the blogger.  During my Christmas break, I also had the time to go through Penguin Random House special Young Adult Essential Reads for  Fall-Winter 2019. Even if the books are sponsored by Penguin Random House (and big thank you to them :D), my viewers know by now that never stop me from giving honest reviews before 😉 Let’s get started!



I’ve always been skeptical towards romance Young Adults, I don’t know why it’s just a feeling.  However, despite the fact that I’m not a big fan of the romance in this book, I have to admit that I did relate and feel a connection to some aspects of this book. The main character is going through a limbo- which he described as a transition in adapting being a Korean-American teenager. His family pushes him to date someone from his own cultural background and that is something very common in Asian families.  It almost feels adorable to read about this struggle.

RATING: 3.5/5



The resemblance of this book cover and Crazy Rich Asians is not even subtle anymore, it’s a direct statement haha. However, the  plot is different. It’s happening in a time where we say what if the US had a Royal family and what are the repercussions of it. Right after I read the title, the first thing that came to mind was Yes, Gossip Girl haha. But what we got, is way less than that. You would expect drama and how Royal family got entwined in some scandals, but no. The pace was too slow and the story dragged on too many details that are not necessary to the character. 

Rating: 2/5



This book suffers from two problematics : the want for nostalgia and the inability to deliver to the right audience. This novel is all about Buffy and the Vampire Slayer atmosphere, with a touch of paranormal and a 17-old girl who’s trying to be portrayed as a badass female character. I think that if the author made this book target people in their mid-twenties and their mid-thirties, it would probably work. Because that’s the target for the nostalgia feeling, people in their mid-twenties to mid-thirties grew up with Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Wanting to go on an easier road for middle-grade  and teenager, the story became a bit of a cliché and miss the dark feelings of Buffy. There are some oddly outdated references that I don’t think 15 year old teenagers will get it in this book, but then I shouldn’t judge because there might be some who would understand.  What I admire however is that this book doesn’t take itself seriously, in doing so, it established in the beginning what kind of novel you are going to read and there are no disappointments there.




I read this book last and after the 3 books I was honestly ready to write another negative review but holyy I loved this book! It has the right amount of spookiness, the type of Young Adult Horror I was waiting for. Since 13 minutes, I have opened my heart to that specific niche which is suspense bent in Young adult and since then, I always gave it a chance because you will never know when’s the next time you’ll find the next 13 Minutes. And frankly, I almost did with this one. It’s more paranormal but dealt in a witchy way.  There’s also a childhood legend folklore surrounding the story which I find an original add to it.



Have you read any of this book? And what do you think about it ? 🙂 



Leave a Reply to tasya @ the literary huntress Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s