Genre: Contemporary

ARC Review: Life’s Too Short

Posted April 8, 2021 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
ARC Review: Life’s Too Short

I kind of fell in love with this book within the first page or two. Something about Jimenez’s writing just clicks for me – it’s natural, hilarious, and addicting to read. I generally liked her debut but had some lingering issues with it as time passed. I LOVED the second book in this companion series and my faith was fully restored and ready for book three. I’m happy to sat that my super high expectations were exceeded with this one. I fell hard for Adrian and Vanessa right off the bat. I’m pretty sure if I started this first thing in the morning instead of late at night, I could have or would have finished this book in one sitting. Vanessa is a YouTuber with a popular channel highlighting her travels around the world. You find out from the synopsis and early in the book that she may have ALS like her mother and her sister. She wants to live it up during however long of a time she has on earth. Adrian, on the other hand, is her seemingly vanilla attorney next-door-neighbor who goes to his job with long hours and doesn’t do much else. I loved him right away – they had so much chemistry. Vanessa’s personality was luminous and hilarious – a different kind of funny from Kristen in book one, but similar in that she made me laugh out loud all the time. They balanced each other out and early “friends only” relationship made things effortless […]

Review Round Up | Influence, This is Not the Jess Show, and Girls With Rebel Souls

Posted April 7, 2021 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | Influence, This is Not the Jess Show, and Girls With Rebel Souls

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! All Sara Shepard books are the same… and I mean that as a compliment. I know what I’m getting into and her books always hit the spot. They’re so easy to read, are super addicting, and always have a surprising ending. That’s all I ask for with my mystery/thrillers, to be honest, and reading her books feels like coming home for me. I remember the good ol’ PLL days and some of her older series. So good, so classic. This one involves influencers – a topic I personally haven’t encountered much in YA books yet. Just a little bit here and there. It goes between Delilah, Jasmine, and Fiona, with flickers of Scarlet’s live streams and vlog transcripts in between as well. Delilah just moved to LA and is a budding influencer after saving a puppy from a burning shed. Jasmine and Fiona are well-established influencers hiding major secrets, both trying to break out of their shells. I liked each of the points of view here but Delilah’s felt a bit young compared to the other two. Of course, because it’s Sara Shepard, there’s a mystery involved. The book starts with a prologue where one of the girls (we assume one of the MCs) ends up dying […]

Five Star ARC Reviews: It’s Kind of a Cheesy Love Story and Float Plan

Posted March 18, 2021 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Five Star ARC Reviews: It’s Kind of a Cheesy Love Story and Float Plan

Thanks to Morgan, I read MEANT TO BE years ago. She thought I would like it based on my questionnaire for Secret Santa (I think?) and sent it my way, and she was totally right. I have completely slept on her other books since then though and clearly that’s a damn shame. IT’S KIND OF A CHEESY LOVE STORY obviously caught my eye because I love pizza more than most things in the world. A girl is born in a pizza parlor’s bathroom and she’s given free pizza for life AND a job when she turns sixteen. Begrudgingly, she accepts both, and spends her Friday night in Hot N’ Crusty instead of with her group of ~popular~ friends that she doesn’t necessarily fit in with anymore (did she ever?). I truly adored this book – it had all of the elements I’m looking for in a YA romance. Beck is trying to figure out what to do with her life but not in the traditional ways within the genre. Sure, she’s not sure yet about college or future jobs, but she’s trying to find herself among her friends and new work group. She has a secret obsession with a sci-fi show and a few other pieces of herself that she’s hiding from her friends, which is creating a wedge between them that only grows when she finds common interests with her HNC pals. It was lovely to watch her grow closer to Julianne and the others through movie nights and […]

ARC Reviews: The Project and A Pho Love Story

Posted March 3, 2021 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
ARC Reviews: The Project and A Pho Love Story

I really loved SADIE – it was the kind of addicting read I’m always looking for when it comes to mystery/thrillers. It stuck with me for a long time after reading too. I’ve only read a few (at most) cult-related books so I was intrigued by THE PROJECT. Lo’s parents died in a car accident (she survived) and her sister joined The Unity Project, a group in New York that pretty much screams “cult” to everyone outside it, so she’s been alone for a number of years when the book begins. The story goes back and forth between her POV in present day and Bea’s (her sister) in the past as she is getting deeper in the Project. I enjoyed reading about how Lo tried to make a life for herself, as imperfect or sad as it was, and her time investigating the Project. It took me a really long time to get into this one. It was interesting for the most part but I knew exactly where it was headed. Too many reviews or summaries said the ending was “unexpected” so I kind of knew where it was probably going as a result. I kept mixing up the two characters names in my head and it went back and forth between them, which didn’t help me. While I liked the book overall, it won’t stick with me like SADIE did. I wish I didn’t see parts of the ending coming because I do think it impacted my reading. I […]

ARC Review: You Have a Match

Posted January 4, 2021 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: You Have a Match

I absolutely adored TWEET CUTE (and pestered my sister endlessly until she finally read it and loved it as much as me). I was a huge fan of the ship, the characters, the setting, and the unique plot. I compared YOU HAVE A MATCH a lot while reading it because it’s always hard to bring a sophomore novel to top the debut, which was a five-star read. Both books are kind of complicated, to be honest – there are so many different story threads to follow along with, yet it never feels like the author is taking on too much. YOU HAVE A MATCH follows Abby as she deals with the fallout from finding out that she has an older sister who was clearly adopted about a year and a half before she was born. How could her parents keep this kind of secret? What happened!? Savvy, her newfound sister, and Abby go to the same summer camp to get to know each other and try to determine how this all went down. Abby’s best-friend-turned-crush Leo is there working in the cafeteria, while Savvy is dealing with relationship drama of her own. I loved learning about Abby’s friendship with Connie and Leo, while also seeing her sisterhood/friendship develop with Savvy (after some very rocky patches and fights at the start!).The camp setting was a lot of fun and led to some great moments with Abby’s photography. I loved that she was exploring different options instead of college, or considered community college […]

Review Round Up | Chasing Lucky, The Hunting Party, and How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories

Posted January 1, 2021 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | Chasing Lucky, The Hunting Party, and How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I’ve pretty much loved all of Jenn Bennett’s books and this one was good! I have to say it might be my least favorite, but still a very cute, atmospheric read. Annoyingly, I can’t really put my finger on the things that bother me or prevent it from being a fave. Josie returns home to Beauty, RI (kind of like Newport, in my eyes) and encounters her long lost best friend, Lucky, after they were essentially ripped apart five years before. Josie and the women in her family are “cursed” and have bad luck with men. This didn’t really play into the story as much as I expected but was somewhat of an underlying theme. She and her mom are back in Beauty to run her grandma’s bookstore while she’s away with her aunt. It was fun to read about this coastal Rhode Island town but I didn’t get as many fun New England seaport vibes as I was hoping for? The bookstore was THERE but not as present as I would have liked either for some reason. There are a lot of plot points I didn’t expect or remember from the synopsis, if they were in there, like the breaking of a store window and a […]

Review Round Up | All the Missing Girls, Dear Justyce, and Second Chance on Cypress Lane

Posted December 28, 2020 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | All the Missing Girls, Dear Justyce, and Second Chance on Cypress Lane

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! In the shitty year that is 2020, I completely blew it with #ReadForGrace. No calendar reminder could help me keep track of what day it is, apparently. I decided on a whim to start a book a day or two after her birthday and I think she’d be fine with that 🙂 Megan Miranda (and ALL THE MISSING GIRLS specifically) were favorites of hers. I’d been wanting to read this one forever so it was the perfect opportunity. I’m going to keep this review brief because of spoilers, but wow – what a format! The first chapter or two set the scene for the story: Nicolette is managing the health of her aging father and has to return home to NC to help clean the house in order to sell it. You learn that her best friend from high school went missing a decade before. The narrative is then told in reverse, beginning with Day 15 and ending up at Day 1, the day another girl (Annaliese) goes missing. Along the journey, you find out about the complex relationships between Nicolette and her father, ex-boyfriend, brother… a bunch of people who never left town. It took some getting used to, reading a story in reverse, but it […]

Holiday Reviews: One Way or Another and A Princess for Christmas

Posted December 9, 2020 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: One Way or Another and A Princess for Christmas

Story I’m a sucker for a parallel life/universe kind of story. Should she go to NYC or her crush’s cabin for the Christmas holiday? I love seeing both timelines and how they end – will she end up in the same place? The main character, Paige, struggles with anxiety and decision-making; when she hits her head on the grocery store floor, the story and her life split into two universes so we can see how it plays out. I enjoyed the best-friends-to-more situation that was possibly brewing too – Paige had had a crush on her best guy friend for years and is trying to figure out how to move on and get over it. I liked reading both stories/settings. I think the wintery cabin with Fitz and his family was more interesting because they were actually spending time together. The NYC timeline was cool for her to travel and spend time with her mom’s friend’s son, Harrison, but she spent a ton of time still thinking about Fitz. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels NYC during the holidays is always a dream setting. I’ve been near Christmas and it was a chaotic time that I don’t want to relive ever again. I’m not a city girl. I can definitely see the magic in it and love reading Christmas books set there! It’s the closest I’ll get haha. The Christmas feels were medium because those elements weren’t the point of the story. It was just the time of year where the […]

ARC Review: Love & Olives

Posted December 3, 2020 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
ARC Review: Love & Olives

Honestly, my experiences with this series so far have been hit or miss. Meaning, book one was a miss for me and book two was a major hit. This 50/50 record was enough to still keep me super excited for book three – a book set in Greece featuring the lost city of Atlantis? YES! And honestly, I loved LOVE & LUCK enough to know the first one was a fluke. My thoughts on LOVE & GELATO were as follows: Pausing this for now. I don’t mind the audio narrator but I think I would be better off reading this one instead. I’ll wait for my library hold to come in. I have a feeling things may pick up, based on the synopsis, but I’m not going to carve out listening time for this one as it is right now. ——– 2nd time putting this one aside. Not sure why I can’t get into it. I tried my physical copy and had no desire to pick the book up again. I feel like I would like it but it’s not the time for me to read it. Idk. Gonna give it to my sister and see how I feel much later. Anyways, I thought third time could definitely be the charm. I have no issue with skipping, DNFing, or avoiding the first book in a companion series in favor of book two if it still sounds up my alley. LOVE & OLIVES hit the mark for me in the synopsis, […]

Review Round Up | The Night Swim, Admission, and Recommended for You

Posted November 13, 2020 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | The Night Swim, Admission, and Recommended for You

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I forgot to cancel BOTM and ended up with a rogue credit to use. The very small synopsis on the website seemed addicting and up my alley (I mean, any book about a true crime podcaster will win me over). However, after I selected it and headed to Goodreads, the heavier subject matter (that I usually avoid- sexual assault and rape) became apparent. It’s out of my wheelhouse and comfort zone, generally speaking, but I decided to go with it anyways. I’m really glad I did! Yes, it was hard to read at times, especially because both stories or “timelines” in this feature sexual assault. It was a super addicting book that I never wanted to put down, which is huge for me in 2020. Actually, all three of the books here did that for me! The main character, Rachel, is visiting a small beach town in North Carolina to follow a rape trial for the third season of her podcast. While there, a former local tracks her down and leaves mysterious messages for Rachel, begging her to solve the mystery of her own sister’s rape and murder 25 years prior. The two stories were similar and because intertwined in ways I didn’t see coming. Overall, really […]