Genre: Young Adult

Review Roundup | Finlay Donovan Jumps the Gun, Tomorrow x3, and Lost in the Moment and Found

Posted February 2, 2023 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 2 Comments
Review Roundup | Finlay Donovan Jumps the Gun, Tomorrow x3, and Lost in the Moment and Found

This series has become truly one of my all-time favorites. It reminds me a lot of the time I read EVELYN HUGO and needed like a million more books just like it, but couldn’t find them. I wrote a whole post about it haha. There’s just some magical quality in Cosimano’s writing and these characters that gets me every time. I’ll be honest, I was nervous about this one a little bit. I’m not a big police gal and wasn’t jazzed up about reading about a ton of cops and a citizens police training program. I definitely didn’t love that aspect overall but it was kind of fun creating that “summer camp” or “college dorm” vibe where everyone is in one place during the story. This story did a good job of wrapping up some loose ends from the first two books while opening the door for future installments. Parts of the initial mystery seemed to be solved enough for the reader to finally get a bit of closure (and not drag the same questions out into book four), but there are lingering threads to keep it moving. Finlay and Vero were just as funny and interesting to read about as they always are. This is the kind of series I’d keep reading forever and ever, with the main characters solving whatever mystery comes up next. This is technically my least favorite book of the three but a four-star book I didn’t want to stop listening to? Can’t go wrong. Man, […]

Review Round Up | The Villa, The Stolen Heir, and Lunar Love

Posted January 23, 2023 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 2 Comments
Review Round Up | The Villa, The Stolen Heir, and Lunar Love

I’ve been following Rachel Hawkins for years – from her YA work to today’s adult mystery/suspense fiction – and she remains a lowkey favorite of mine. This book sealed the deal for me and she is still cemented as an auto-buy author. Some early reviews are a bit mixed but I actually liked both timelines: one takes place in the 70s during the original murder and the other is present day with two best friends staying at the villa. The book was very tense throughout, where you know something bad is going to happen in at least one timeline but probably both. I really loved the ending: it totally surprised me. It’s not really a true mystery or thriller but more of a suspense novel, which is definitely still a fun ride. I couldn’t put it down and was always so curious to see what would happen next. The mashup of comps at the bottom of the synopsis (“Inspired by Fleetwood Mac, the Manson murders, and the infamous summer Percy and Mary Shelley spent with Lord Byron at a Lake Geneva castle––the birthplace of Frankenstein”) all feel accurate based on m limited knowledge of those three. I would say my own personal comparison is like a much darker version of Daisy Jones and the Six haha. I love Holly Black and her writing so much. There’s truly nothing better than falling back into a familiar world, especially when you thought your time with it was over! THE STOLEN HEIR kicks […]

Blog Tour Review: Just the Nicest Couple

Posted January 13, 2023 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Blog Tour Review: Just the Nicest Couple

Purchase links: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Bookshop // IndieBoundBooks-A-Million // Kobo //  AppleBooks // Google Play // Libro.FM Review Believe it or not, as a heavy mystery/thriller reader (especially in the past 3-4 years), this is my first Mary Kubica book! I’ve had a few of her backlist titles on my TBR over the years but for some reason never dove in. I thought this blog tour would be the perfect time to finally give her a shot.  This story is about two married couples – Lily and Christian, and Nina and Jake. From the outset, it seems like Lily and Christian have a pretty solid relationship. Nina and Jake… not so much. They had a huge fight and he’s been missing ever since. I was very curious from the first handful of chapters how this book would continue. It seemed like it could be straightforward from the overall setup, so I kept turning the pages to see how Kubica would end up getting me! From a writing perspective, Kubica uses short sentences, very staccato. It took some getting used to, and I saw a lot of other reviews also commented on it. Not sure if this was done on purpose for this book or if that’s her usual style? (Friends have since confirmed her writing is different in other books, so that’s good!) I didn’t like the characters and they (especially Christian) made a ton of dumb decisions. It was good because I didn’t really trust them, […]

Recent Reads: No Exit, Stay Awake, and Anon Pls

Posted January 9, 2023 / Bite-Sized Reviews, Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Recent Reads: No Exit, Stay Awake, and Anon Pls

I’ve read a few books at the end of last year (that didn’t really involve the holiday season) and just wanted to share some quick thoughts, so we’re here today with mini reviews (part two!). NO EXIT was a wild ride. Lots of people have recommended it for a super addicting thriller that you can’t put down, which is exactly what I needed at the time, so I finally decided to give it a go. I picked it up from BOTM and hopefully will be able to watch the movie soon to finish up the overall ~experience.~ As I was reading I kept wondering how it was possible that this book could go on and on based on the promise – I had no idea what could possibly happen…and I really just kept reading until I found out. I think I expected something else in some ways? But it was overall quite a thrilling read. Like many others, I won’t share any details to spoil it. Just know that there are more twists and turns than you could imagine possible. Very creepy, good book to read in the dead of winter! I didn’t realize when I first added this book to my TBR that Megan Goldin wrote one of my recent fave mystery books (THE NIGHT SWIM). Such a pleasant surprise that her second book STAY AWAKE was just as fun of a read. The premise was unlike any other mystery/suspense book I’ve read before. The main character has amnesia where […]

Recent Reads: Made in Manhattan, The Family Game, and You’re Invited

Posted January 4, 2023 / Bite-Sized Reviews, Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Recent Reads: Made in Manhattan, The Family Game, and You’re Invited

I’ve read a few books at the end of last year (that didn’t really involve the holiday season) and just wanted to share some quick thoughts, so we’re here today with mini reviews! I’ve become a huge sucker for Lauren Layne’s books. I adored the Central Park Pact series and found them super addicting, and her follow-up (TO SIR WITH LOVE) was excellent too. I just think her writing is so easy to read and exactly what I need in my life when I’m struggling with books holding my attention! MADE IN MANHATTAN was a reverse “My Fair Lady” retelling. Posh NYC heiress Violet is asked by her de facto grandmother to help whip her newly discovered grandson, Cain, into shape so he can (hopefully) take over their family business. The two spend time getting to know each other and disagree on a ton of things before the obvious happens. This was a cute story and I’m glad I finally picked it up – I definitely needed something light and breezy. Cain and Violet were nice characters with more in common than they thought. The ending was sweet and the drama was minimal, which is generally what I prefer from my romance these days! I’d recommend it if you like her other books for sure. THE FAMILY GAME was a was super intriguing and addicting! Harry and her fiance begin spending more and more time with his family and she’s quickly brought into their world. His father seems intense (and […]

Holiday Reviews: Once Upon a December and One Last Gift

Posted December 31, 2022 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: Once Upon a December and One Last Gift

Story This was such an odd reading experience. So many things came to me as I was reading that annoyed me or confused me that I actually had to keep track in a note on my phone… I don’t ever do that anymore! Before I get too far into the details, I’ll chat about the story concept itself… which was actually the best part! Astra has a holiday weekend with her three best girl friends each winter and they usually shop around this little winter market. Each year it’s come to town, she’s encountered Jack (working at the kringle bakery) and he always seems familiar. The market itself (Julemarked) is actually magical and travels around the world every December, popping up in a new location. He’s remembered her over the years and always waits for the market to land back in Milwaukee. They age differently in the Julemarked because they’re really only “alive” for a month each year. In any case, all that backstory to say that this was a unique story. When Astra finally remembers him and slowly starts to gain memories of the market back, the two start to fall for each other. Everything about Astra irritated me: the way she bent over backwards for her ex husband about her dog, answering his calls, and even hemming his pants. She talked constantly how he essentially forced her into abandoning her friends for the few years they were together and how she never wants to do it again (yet […]

Holiday Reviews: Resting Scrooge Face and Lovelight Farms

Posted December 22, 2022 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: Resting Scrooge Face and Lovelight Farms

Story I picked this one up on a whim when I wanted another holiday novella – clearly I’m all about quantity this year but luckily most of the novellas have been quality too! This one was unfortunately the “worst” of the bunch but still not too bad, especially considering the length. Nola heads home to her cute hometown in Maine after a breakup and subsequent relocation out of NYC. Her high school sweetheart, Caleb, is still there running the local hardware store. He broke her heart and they haven’t had to see each other in a while. The mailman does a little meddling and the two of them end up writing anonymous Christmas-hating letters back and forth without realizing who they’re writing to. It was a cute concept that really should have been a full-length novel. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels As always, I will read a book set in Maine… especially during the holiday season! The setting was good and explained well enough, I think, for this story. It’s really hard to feel major holiday vibes from a book this short but it was nice hearing the characters go back and forth on their Scrooge-y feelings about Christmas… and then gradually warming up to it all! Overall This is a hard one to recommend or rate just because so much of it went right out of my brain upon finishing. Yes, for the millionth time, it’s very short, which is part of the problem (but not the whole problem). […]

Holiday Reviews: The Christmas Letters and Season of Love

Posted December 12, 2022 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: The Christmas Letters and Season of Love

Story Jenny Hale’s holiday books used to be my absolute go-tos each year but the past couple were not quite as good as her earlier books. I’m excited to report that this one was definitely back along the lines of her older books! Elizabeth fled her small farm and hometown ten years ago for the bright NYC lights, high society with a rich boyfriend, and charity work in lieu of a “real career.” When her boyfriend dumps her, she heads home to her recently departed grandmother’s farm, which her mom is currently running. They find old Christmas letters from her grandma and realize her story isn’t quite as straightforward as they once thought. Meanwhile, Liz hits it off with a newcomer who is there for the holiday season and falls back in love with the way of life on the farm. I really enjoyed that she reconnected with her family, friends, and neighborhood. I enjoyed the southern farm town quite a bit. There was a little mystery in the letters and the ending of the book truly surprised me! It was so unexpected and really made this a winner for me. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels The farm made for a fun Christmas setting – very similar to another holiday novella I read this year. I liked reading about the decor, festive shops in town, etc. but as usual, I could have gone for more! Lots of snowy scenes too. Overall This was more reminiscent of some of Hale’s best […]

Holiday Novella Reviews: The Santa Suit and The Christmas Concierge

Posted December 7, 2022 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Novella Reviews: The Santa Suit and The Christmas Concierge

Story This was a random choice this year after having been on my radar since it was released last year. When I decided to read 7 books in 7 days again, it was an easy selection due to its size (and audiobook on Scribd to switch between!). The story centers around freshly divorced Ivy heading to her newly purchased farm property in a small town. Her realtor turned handyman turned love interest Ezra is present throughout the novel. Ivy finds a gorgeous vintage Santa Suit in the attic with a heartbreaking Christmas wish from a child written on a piece of paper in the pocket. She decides to track down the writer of the note and try to figure out what happened that Christmas back in the day. Along the way, she meets and befriends a lot of people in the town who help her on her quest (and beyond – everyone is quite friendly). The story was cute and cheesy, which is what I tend to expect from holiday books in most cases. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels I love a southern small town romance with Christmas vibes! There was a cute Christmas market setting that I really enjoyed and totally wish was fleshed out more. The farm property was well-known (due to its previous owners) for its lights and Christmas cheer, so it was nice when Ivy got into the spirit with decorating. Overall, decent Christmas vibes but a short novella – so a little hard to get […]

Holiday Reviews: A Season for Second Chances and Window Shopping

Posted December 1, 2022 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: A Season for Second Chances and Window Shopping

Story When Annie’s life goes off the rails and she loses her spark, she decides to take on a role essentially housesitting for an elderly woman who will be away from her beachside home for the winter season. Annie moves to the cute little town to watch over the house and keep it running, rent-free, from the fall through the spring. She has to contend with the woman’s nephew, though, who is trying to sell the property to a developer. Naturally you can imagine the Hallmark movie moments that occur from there! Overall, this was a super cute story with a low-key, breezy plot. I loved the setting, cast of quirky locals, and the easy (not truly “easy” but more like drama-free) romance. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels Beachside holiday or winter books can be really fun – I know that I personally love visiting the beach and going for a walk whenever I visit Maine, regardless of weather. Having a cute seaside town transition into a little Christmassy village in England? Love those vibes. Because the book didn’t take place strictly in December or around the Christmas holidays, it wasn’t quite as Christmassy as it could have been… BUT it was super cute to see how the town went crazy for other fall holidays like Halloween and Thanksgiving. This was the perfect book to read in November to kick off holiday reads on a lighter note. Overall I definitely recommend this one for your first holiday-ish read of the season, […]