Source: Publisher

ARC Reviews: Game On and Sweet Carolina Morning

Posted August 29, 2016 / Book Reviews / 3 Comments
ARC Reviews: Game On and Sweet Carolina Morning

Southern Summer(ish)time Series ARC August was perfect for catching up on some books I’d been putting off for basically no reason. I recently was approved for both of these on Netgalley. While they’re for different target audiences – one is YA and one is Adult – they’re both set in the south and bring some major warm weather vibes. They’re also both second in their each of their series, respectively, and I generally enjoyed their predecessors (although not 100% loved).I hate to say it, but I have mixed feelings on this one as well. I found my attention wavering a lot in the beginning of the book and I don’t think I paid enough attention to what was going on for some reason. I liked Bri and Eric well enough, but don’t feel like I really got to KNOW Bri as much as Eric. I feel like there were significantly more chapters from his point of view and I missed out on Bri’s perspective at times. I was missing some friendship feels I would have liked, but the family parts were fleshed out pretty nicely on both sides. My favorite trope involves childhood-best-friends-getting-together, PLUS there was a slow-burn romance involved here. It sounded like such a win-win on the romance side for me. I liked when they reminisced on their childhood together, but this was a bit too slow-burn for me. I guess they were both protecting their hearts but I wanted to just do this so badly: Super slow-burn aside, some of the […]

Blog Tour | ARC Review: Results May Vary

Posted August 10, 2016 / Book Reviews / 8 Comments
Blog Tour | ARC Review: Results May Vary

My Thoughts Honestly I went into this book with pretty high expectations. I really loved THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY and had been anticipating Chase’s next novel ever since. After the end of her debut, there was an excerpt for her next story. It was slated to be a companion to THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY and I was soooo pumped. Later, Chase talked about how her editor fell in love with this story instead, and wanted to publish them in a different order. I was slightly disappointed but still VERY excited to read her next story… no matter which one it was! Turns out, I had absolutely no reason to be nervous; my high expectations were truly met and definitely exceeded. This book – almost instantly – became my favorite book of the year. No exaggeration. Within the first page or two, I just had this weird feeling come over me that this book was going to be fantastic. I was completely captivated from the first page and never wanted to stop reading. I could see SO much improvement between her debut and her sophomore novels. That’s saying a LOT though, because I was incredibly impressed with her debut as it is! I always think I’m more of a plot-driven reader instead of character-driven. I like the characters to have personalities and be fully fleshed out, of course, but I more want there to be action and a story. Some writers change that for me. This book was really […]

Mini Reviews: All the Summer Girls and The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend

Posted July 11, 2016 / Book Reviews / 3 Comments
Mini Reviews: All the Summer Girls and The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend

I have a tendency to add adult fiction to my TBR alllll the time… and then never read it. I was randomly in the mood for some recently and a couple of them happened to be nice beachy reads. I spotted the first one on Hoopla and remembered being interested in it a few months ago. Then, I was browsing my Kindle for another read and remembered the eARC I’ve been putting off for no reason. It’s not nearly as summery or anything, but it is about a vacation (“holiday”) in general… so that counts.I saw mixed reviews for this one, but it seemed like a lot of my friends enjoyed it more than the random reviewers. I was quickly intrigued by the story but thought it was kind of heavy-handed at times. There wasn’t a lot going on and the secrets the characters were hiding seemed obvious to me. Kate felt like the main character even though it switched perspectives. She just got dumped and found out she was pregnant, so she uses her Bachelorette weekend to head to the Jersey Shore with her friends. Vanessa now is a stay-at-home mom who is getting feelings for an old boyfriend, despite being married. Dani is a free spirit kinda gal who kept moving west after losing 12 jobs in 7 years post-college. Needless to say, they’re all quite different. It was fun to see the friends get back into a rhythm after time apart, even though you knew tensions were […]

ARC Reviews: The Lost & Found and Defending Taylor

Posted July 4, 2016 / Book Reviews / 5 Comments
ARC Reviews: The Lost & Found and Defending Taylor

I kind of just sat here and stared at my screen until I thought of words. This book was really, truly fantastic. If you like character-driven novels with adorable side characters too, read it. If you love road trip stories, read it. If you’re a fan of light magical realism, read it. If you’re a book blogger who can relate to internet friendships becoming real, read it. Honestly… I could go on like this for days. Frannie and Louis are online pen pal-type friends who met on a virtual support group website. They both end up on trips to Austin, TX (for different reasons, but also to see each other for the first time). As a special note of magical realism, the two of them are constantly losing things. They literally just disappear. Frannie has lost letters, photos, super soakers; Louis has lost tennis rackets, fabric, money. They start finding each other’s items as they travel towards each other, as if by magic. The entire story was just so endearing. I LOVED Frannie and Louis, and I almost equally loved their “partners” in the story. Frannie travelled with her cousin, Arrow, and Louis went with his twin sister, Willa. They all had such interesting backstories. Plus, diversity! Arrow was adopted from Vietnam, Willa lost her legs in an accident, and Louis/Willa were half Indian. All of these aspects were so seamlessly integrated into the story and discussed organically; it didn’t feel like diversity for the sake of diversity. Each character was […]

Mini Reviews: The Forbidden Wish and Just a Girl

Posted June 24, 2016 / Book Reviews / 6 Comments
Mini Reviews: The Forbidden Wish and Just a Girl

After I saw the early reviews for this book, I bumped it up even higher on my TBR. I requested from the library and decided to read it as soon as possible, even with a million other more priority books waiting to be read. Unfortunately I kind of wish I didn’t bother reading it right away, because it didn’t grab me like I expected it to. The story was really great and the writing was lovely, but I was left slightly disappointed. It took me FOREVER to read this book. I never really wanted to pick it up and read it, and my attention would wander while I was reading. Khara was a really interesting main character because of her strength, backstory, and magic. I just loved reading about her. Aladdin was also a fantastic love interest and I kind of loved him. I definitely shipped them. However, there just was a little spark missing. The other side characters (the princess and her watchmaidens) were amazing too! The biggest issue, for me, is the general lack of plot. I could summarize the book in a few bullet points and call it a day. The ending had a lot more action, so that was a great change of pace. Overall, this book didn’t really meet my expectations, but I really did enjoy it. The gorgeous writing, lovable characters, and ending definitely sealed the deal for me. Here’s a nice age-level switch for you – a New Adult book I finished but […]

ARC Reviews: The Marked Girl and The Vanishing Throne

Posted June 17, 2016 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
ARC Reviews: The Marked Girl and The Vanishing Throne

I really liked this a lot! It took me a little while to get engaged with this for some reason; I think the beginning threw me off. After the first few chapters, I started getting really into it and was super curious about where it was heading. The synopsis says that Liv is in some way connected to the people who come in from the other realm, so I was wondering nonstop how all that was going to connect at some point. The basic idea behind the book is that a girl, Liv, finds these three people (Cedric, Kat, and Merek) who end up explaining that they came in from another land (Caelum) through a portal. I haven’t read a lot of books like this, but it reminded me immediately of a cross between Thor and The 20th Kingdom (I’ll admit I’ve only seen one episode, but the premise at least seems similar!). I became hooked soonafter. I’m a bad judge of what a GOOD fantasy story is because I read so few of them. To me, this book was really unique and super interesting. As I said, I’ve never read a book involving realms and portals; I’d only seen it on the shows/movies. So yeah, I thought this book was unique and engaging for sure. Not sure how experienced fantasy readers will feel! There were lots of twists and turns that I honestly didn’t see coming, which was refreshing. Lately I’ve been on a kick where I’m too good at predicting what’s going to […]

ARC Review: Two Summers

Posted April 15, 2016 / Book Reviews / 7 Comments
ARC Review: Two Summers

I really enjoyed this one. It wasn’t exactly what I was expecting in a lot of ways, but it was a super fun and summery read. I love parallel life books SO much. Just waiting to see what happens at the end is my favorite part. You always wonder – will the two lives/paths/choices leave them to a different result? Will their life end up the same in the end? Every book has this question and I’ll admit, I haven’t read many that led to two very different outcomes. No spoilers here though. I definitely didn’t LOVE this as much as I hoped. It sounded right up my alley and I’ve enjoyed Aimee Friedman’s books in the past, so it was nice to be with her writing again. The premise is that Summer is planning to go to Paris to see her dad for the summer. She’s having second thoughts and then her phone rings with an unknown number the moment before she steps on the plane. Her life splits into two different directions – what happens when she answers, and what happens when she doesn’t. Like most parallel life books, the story alternates between the two choices and how her summer turns out. Summer in Paris vs. Summer in New York Instead of switching between the two parallel storylines every other chapter – like most books do – this one has longer “parts” so you only switch between the two a handful of times. In some ways, I liked […]

ARC Review: Seven Ways We Lie

Posted March 23, 2016 / Book Reviews / 15 Comments
ARC Review: Seven Ways We Lie

I’ve seen some mixed thoughts on this one overall but I really, really enjoyed it. There are many people who didn’t think the seven points of view were different enough, but I fall firmly on the opposite side of that opinion. I really could see the difference between each person and felt that they were all different and unique in their own ways. I’m super impressed that the author was able to take seven different people with distinct personalities and carve them out THAT well. Corresponding to the different sins, however, was a little less clear for some characters compared to others. Some of them were very obvious while others didn’t click right away. I did some researching around other reviews and confirmed what I suspected about some of them, so that helped. However, I think in terms of matching up with that completely, the sins could have been more obvious – since that seemed to be the entire idea behind the story. Because this is such a character-driven story, I’ll talk a little about each character and go through them in order of my favorite to least favorite. The character descriptions may be spoiler-y in the sense that I WILL say which sin I think they each correspond to. Characters Olivia | I feel like she was kind of the main character even though there wasn’t necessarily a MAIN character. Her sin was pretty clearly lust because she hooked up with a lot of guys. I really loved her perspective and feminism. […]

Mini ARC Reviews: Linny’s Sweet Dream List and Rebel Bully Geek Pariah

Posted March 17, 2016 / Book Reviews / 8 Comments
Mini ARC Reviews: Linny’s Sweet Dream List and Rebel Bully Geek Pariah

I generally liked this one, but the last half of the book bugged me. Consider this a very strong 3 stars! It was a quick, cute read about a woman trying to get her life back on track. I loved the Southern small-town setting that had lots of fun and interesting characters. The family dynamics between Linny, her sister Kate, and her mother Dottie were so great. I loved seeing their relationship, as well as Linny’s relationship with her best friend Mary Catherine. However, Linny jumped to so many conclusions throughout the book about Jack and his marital status… no matter how much evidence was OBVIOUS otherwise. QUIT ASSUMING! I also think the events of the plot could have been better spaced out; it was very slow-moving overall. The writing was a bit bland at times? I felt like the same descriptors were used too often and the book just felt… bland. I don’t know how else to explain it. She referred to Jack as “the vet” and his son as “the young boy” every other sentence instead of using their names, which felt impersonal. Overall though, it was a heartwarming, quick read with solid ending that made me happy I read it. Like most readers of this book, I expected a Breakfast Club vibe with a little mystery involved based on the synopsis. I figured it would be a contemp with multiple points of view – from the rebel, the bully, the geek, and the pariah. The book ended […]

ARC Review: Liars and Losers Like Us

Posted March 7, 2016 / Book Reviews / 5 Comments
ARC Review: Liars and Losers Like Us

So, I’ve honestly never felt so conflicted about rating a book. There were almost equal parts YES and NO about this story, so I want to break it down a little bit to try to explain why. What worked I liked the premise of the book. It’s been awhile since I’ve read a story where prom is the center of the plot, so it was nice to be back into that area of high school. (Although I’m very glad I’m not ACTUALLY back at that point in high school…) I’m still pretty darn obsessed with the book cover. It’s something I’ll always appreciate, because I’m superficial like that 😉 I’ll get more into this later, but there was some solid banter and jokes between Bree and Sean. I definitely shipped them in a general sense, but there were awkward moments too. The entire friend group was interesting. They all definitely had their individual issues that came to light, although some felt superficial. All of them mostly felt like real people though. Again, there were some funny jokes and insults thrown at each other that made them feel realistic. I really couldn’t stop reading. The book was kind of addicting and I was interested the entire time, despite its flaws. It’s not perfect and neither were its characters, but it kept me going. The ending of the book was damn near perfect. Super minor spoiler ahead, that’s kind of revealed in the synopsis… I loved Bree’s speech and how she called everyone […]