Friday, June 23, 2017

Review: Trusting You & Other Lies by Nicole Williams

Trusting You & Other Lies
By: Nicole Williams
Release Date:

Description:
USA Today and New York Times bestselling author Nicole Williams delivers a seductive summer romance worth swooning over. Perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Stephanie Perkins.

Phoenix can't imagine anything worse than being shipped off to family summer camp. Her parents have been fighting for the past two years--do they seriously think being crammed in a cabin with Phoenix and her little brother, Harry, will make things better? 

On top of that, Phoenix is stuck training with Callum--the head counselor who is seriously cute but a complete know-it-all. His hot-cold attitude means he's impossible to figure out--and even harder to rely on. But despite her better judgment, Phoenix is attracted to Callum. And he's promising Phoenix a summer she'll never forget. Can she trust him? Or is this just another lie?

Review:
Ahh, Nicole Williams has done it again.  She has succeeded in giving me all the necessary fills throughout a book.  This was a ride I would go on again, the book was just flat out amazing.  The character interactions, the emotions, the real life scenarios, it was just beautiful.  Trust, it’s a hard thing to get back, but it’s an important thing to have with anyone. 

We meet Phoenix, which when you finish the book couldn’t have been a more perfect name for the main character, who is on her way to spend the summer at a family camp, with her disastrous family.  She doesn’t have too much of any high hopes that this vacation will be any good especially with all the background drama happening with her family.  But being young, you really have no choice but to go along. This is where she meets Callum.  He’s quite the enigma himself, keeping to himself but somehow she breaks down through some of those barriers. 

The relationship the develop is very sweet and endearing, gives you high hopes that there are good things out there in life for us, but it’s their trust and sometimes lack of trust in one another that made their relationship just so real and believable.  I felt for them, and I was rooting for them throughout the whole book.  There were moments that made me smile, moments that made me sad and broke my heart and then of course moments that just outright made me cry throughout this book but those moments they shared gave me butterflies, and those are the best kinds of moments.

This book not only talked about romance, and love but it was about family.  Trusting your family and making sure your family trusted you.  It was a beautiful story to show this dynamic, everything isn’t always perfect but it’s how you perceive and work through those issues that make you the family you are.  It will bring everyone closer together.  Don’t get me wrong I loved the scenes between Callum and Phoenix, but those moments with her mom and her dad, and the precious ones with her brother, those are the memories I will keep the dearest to me from this book.  Family is everything.

I will definitely give some high praise to this book because trust and lies sometimes they go hand in hand, and sometimes you just have to learn why someone did what they did to get clarity on everything.
I loved the characters in the book, the scenery with it being at camp, and it being summer and all.  I really enjoyed reading through the different situations that took place in the book, again very believable and realistic, and dare I say may even be helpful to some who read it.  Sometimes you just have to remember that sometimes people do certain things in your best interest, even if you don’t see it that way at first.


Go read this book! It’s worth it and you will not regret it.  It really touched my heart and to that I thank the author, Nicole Williams, who has yet to let me down in any story of hers that I’ve read.  


Disclaimer:

I received this book from NetGalley and Random House Children, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Review: I'm Not in the Band by Amber Garza

I'm Not in the Band
By: Amber Garza
Release Date: June 12, 2017

Description:
I like Kassidy Milton. There, I said it. She’s funny, beautiful—even though she doesn’t know it—and my favorite kind of weird. But I can’t tell if she’s into me or just trying to get close to me for a chance with my famous twin brother instead. I mean, it has to be me. I am the better-looking one.

But Kassidy has some demons, and she’s not good at letting people in. That happens when you’ve been hurt by someone close to you. I can relate. Trust is a funny thing; it’s hard to gain but easy to lose. I might just learn that the hard way.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book includes a snarky heroine, a swoon-worthy hero, crazy best friends, your favorite music, and lots of feels.
 

Review:
Sometimes it’s really hard being a teenager, and when there are other factors in your life preventing you from fully being yourself it makes life even harder.  I think that Amber Garza did a really great job showing the different sides to teenagers and just people in general today.  Sometimes there are factors out of your control.

We meet Kassidy (great name by the way) who is out with her sister and trying to pretty much get her life back on track.  She’s starting a new school and trying to find herself after her breakup with all her friends at her old school.  Of course she just happens to run into a guy at a concert and one thing leads to another and they really hit it off.  I think this is a fantasy of many teenage girls, to find a guy at a concert who just so happens to be related to the band or at least knows someone.  I know when I was younger I used to fantasize about things like that.  Anyway back to the story, it just so happens they go to the same school and he’s going to show her around.

I don’t really want to expand on the story to much because you should really check it out.  But the interaction between these two and their friends is quite fun to experience.  There is a bit of jealousy going on that I think anyone would feel and then of course all the backstory with Kassidy comes out in little pieces here and there.  It’s interesting and difficult to live through her panic attacks, and understand what she’s going through but at the same time I think it’s something we definitely need to learn to understand.  These are some serious illnesses, thoughts and things that happen to these kids and it will just make you a better person for reading about them and experiencing it through their eyes.  Especially because the author did such a great job describing them.


This was really a great book overall and I think anyone would enjoy it.  I love the cover I think it’s sweet and endearing and I’m totally rooting for these two to live happily ever after.  Great quick read with some serious undertones.

Disclaimer:

I received this book from NetGalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Review: The Best Kind of Magic by Crystal Cestari

The Best Kind of Magic
By: Crystal Cestari
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Series: Windy City Magic #1

Description:
Amber Sand is not a witch. The Sand family Wicca gene somehow leapfrogged over her. But she did get one highly specific magical talent: she can see true love. As a matchmaker, Amber's pretty far down the sorcery food chain (even birthday party magicians rank higher), but after five seconds of eye contact, she can envision anyone's soul mate.

Amber works at her mother's magic shop--Windy City Magic--in downtown Chicago, and she's confident she's seen every kind of happy ending there is: except for one--her own. (The Fates are tricky jerks that way.) So when Charlie Blitzman, the mayor's son and most-desired boy in school, comes to her for help finding his father's missing girlfriend, she's distressed to find herself falling for him. Because while she can't see her own match, she can see his--and it's not Amber. How can she, an honest peddler of true love, pursue a boy she knows full well isn't her match?

The Best Kind of Magic is set in urban Chicago and will appeal to readers who long for magic in the real world. With a sharp-witted and sassy heroine, a quirky cast of mystical beings, and a heady dose of adventure, this novel will have you laughing out loud and questioning your belief in happy endings.

Review:
This was definitely a different kind of book then I’m used to.  I haven’t read anything paranormal in quite some time but the description and name of the book rally caught my eye.  It was overall cute and entertaining take on the paranormal world and all the different types of inhabitants.  I think the author did a wonderful job bringing you into this world throughout the city of Chicago with its magical tendencies.

We meet Amber, a matchmaker, who is just trying to go through the motions of life and hoping that one day she will be matched.  Her best friend is a precog, who can tell the future, but they’ve made a pact not tell about each other’s lives.  Which is all well and dandy for them but then a third party comes in and needs their help, or more specifically Amber’s help.  Charlie, the mayor’s son, and quite the catch around town and especially in their school.  He’s on a mission to find someone who is missing and has requested the help of Amber Sand. 

They are adorable together, you see many different paranormal throughout the book and I like that Charlie really isn’t that affected by everything, if anything he thinks it’s pretty great that these beings exist and that he didn’t even know about it.  I also enjoy that the Amber’s nemesis Ivy (who is an enchantress basically) has no effect on Charlie as well.  It’s fun to watch all their interactions.

The book flowed very nicely and there was a bit of intrigue and even though everything was answered at some point in the book I can’t wait to find out what really happens next. I mean with Amani and her match of course, you’ll see what I’m talking about.  It all sounds really interesting and I can’t wait to dig in, hopefully it’s the next book in the series. 


I liked the setting, the location, the people, and the situations they got themselves into.  There must be something in the air a lot of paranormal books tend to take place in places like Chicago, that must be a hub for real paranormal, note to self, go to Chicago to scope the place out. J I like the cover it’s very cute simple, interesting and mysterious.  The book was in whole a great book to read and quick and easy, can’t wait to see what happens next. 

Disclaimer:
I received this book from NetGalley and Disney Book Group, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Adrift By Sarah Darlington

Adrift
By: Sarah Darlington
Release Date: 5/30/17
Series: Kill Devil Hills #4

Description:
What happens when the world thought you were dead and now suddenly you aren’t?

Ben Turner is back! Not quite as dead as everyone thought, fresh out of a nine-month stay in prison, and back home in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina. Having been dishonorably discharged after charges of desertion from the military, this once well-loved local has fallen from the top. With no plans for college or the future, and hated by the town that once loved him, Ben feels like he’s drowning all over again.

Juniper is pregnant, alone, and running from her crazy fiancé. With only enough money for a one-way bus ticket, she heads to Kill Devil Hills, NC, a town she vacationed in as a little girl, a town she knows, come February, will have plenty of beach rentals to lie low in for the next couple months. Except she didn’t plan on getting caught on day one by the man living next door. Ben. He’s a man who has even more problems than she does, but maybe it’ll take a man like Ben to save her life.

**NEW ADULT ROMANCE** 
Recommended for 18+. ADRIFT can be read as a standalone, but is recommended to be read fourth in Sarah Darlington's KILL DEVIL HILLS Series.

Review:
This was a great concept, more like several ones put together in just the right way that made this story both interesting and slightly addicting.  Sarah Darlington did a great job bringing these characters to life and making the reader feel like they were experiencing the same emotions as them.  I love books that bring you deep into their world.

We meet Ben after his ultimate return back into society after some very unfortunate events in his life, but he’s trying to make things right.  This is of course when he runs into his old neighbor or at least who he thinks is his neighbor.  Getting to know each other once again is a beautiful thing.  Of course that’s not really his neighbor though and Juniper has quite the story behind her as well.  I don’t really want to tell much about it, but it’s interesting as all hell and quite a great reason to get away from your old life.

The two of them tend to spend more time with one another and their feelings grow, the truths come out eventually but it’s the getting there that brings them even closer together.  It was endearing watching the two of them get more and more comfortable with each other and let things go.  It’s hard when you have pasts like they do but it’s the overcoming of them that make you the person you are today.  The two of them really worked well together and the author did a wonderful job of bringing them to life.  I know I couldn’t put the book down and couldn’t wait to see what happens next.

As always the ending was very intense and exciting.  There was a bit of romance in this book, abuse, overcoming fears, moving on in life, emotions galore but in the end happiness and joy prevailed over it all.  This book was interesting, great story plots, even though I wouldn’t have minded hearing more about them I think I’m going to have to go back into the series for that though.

I’ve always hated reading books out of order, but this was sent to me by the author for a review and after reading the blurb I just couldn’t resist and agreed.  But of course now I feel the utter need to go back and read all the previous books because I just got invested in all these really great characters and now I have to know their stories as well. I really need to know what happened to them all, like need-need. 


Overall the book was great, quick easy, light read, sure there were some intense moments but even still it was a quick read.  You couldn’t help but want to finish it right away and of course read more.  I love the cover, it’s very simple and the guy definitely looks like the Ben I pictured throughout the book.  Liked that he’s on the sand, kind of like when he came back to life.  You’ll have to read to know what I’m talking about.  Go read, it’s fundamental!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Review: Songs About a Girl by Chris Russell

Songs About a Girl
By: Chris Russell
Release Date: July 28, 2016

Description:
Charlie Bloom never wanted to be 'with the band'. She's happiest out of the spotlight, behind her camera, unseen and unnoticed. But when she's asked to take backstage photos for hot new boy band Fire&Lights, she can't pass up the chance.

Catapulted into a world of paparazzi and backstage bickering, Charlie soon becomes caught between gorgeous but damaged frontman, Gabriel West, and his boy-next-door bandmate Olly Samson. Then, as the boys' rivalry threatens to tear the band apart, Charlie stumbles upon a mind-blowing secret, hidden in the lyrics of their songs...
 

Review:
This was an interesting book to say the least.  I’ve always in my younger days dreamed of going to concerts and becoming friends with the talent, hanging out and doing all these great things.  But it’s not always as easy as it seems and Chris Russell did a great job of portraying that throughout this book.  Yeah it’s all fun and games but there is always a story behind anyone’s façade. 

We meet Charlie Bloom, seems to be a quiet person with her best friend Melissa, they tend to keep to themselves most of the time.  But that doesn’t stop the mean girls from getting up in their face so there is quite a bit of bullying in this book which I wouldn’t mind teaching Aimee a lesson or two to bring her down a peg or twenty.  There is always that one person who thinks they are better than everyone else.  Those are the people that need to be humbled the most. This book is not mainly about bullying, there is also friendship, family, love, letting go, letting in and betrayal.  Betrayal happens to us all at one point it’s about how you deal with it that makes you the person you are.

Olly knows Charlie from school way back when and invites her on tour with his pop group to take photographs, one thing leads to another and Charlie forms friendships and more with some of the other members.  Its great watching the interaction between her and all the members, you really start to get to know them all and love them all the same.  Sure sometimes I wish she would end up with other people but I don’t know why it happens for some reason they always fall for the bad boy instead of the good guy.  Charlie is drawn to the fire and not the light. 

Overall I thought this book was good and it kept me interested the whole way through, I thought the ending and close to the ending was the best parts.  The heightened drama and emotions I went through reading them were really great.  I was super shocked in some parts and sad in others, an epitome of an emotional rollercoaster.  But it was good and that’s what kept me going from beginning to end.  There are times when I wonder why not the good guy, but sometimes things have a way of sorting themselves out that you can’t help but say well now that explains a lot.  Great book.


I love the cover, so sweet innocent and simple, but still eye catching.  Great writing and overall just a great story. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Review: It Started With Goodbye by Christina June

It Started With Goodbye
By: Christina June
Release Date: May 9, 2017

Description:
Sixteen-year-old Tatum Elsea is bracing for the worst summer of her life. After being falsely accused of a crime, she’s stuck under stepmother-imposed house arrest and her BFF’s gone ghost. Tatum fills her newfound free time with community service by day and working at her covert graphic design business at night, which includes trading emails with a cute cello-playing client. If Tatum is reading his emails right, her virtual Prince Charming is funny, smart, and talented—and he seems to think the same about her. Too bad he’s spending his summer across the ocean in Ireland…not that Tatum would be allowed to go on a date anyway.

But over the course of the summer, Tatum will learn that sometimes going after what you want means breaking all the rules. And when Tatum discovers she’s not the only one in the house keeping secrets, she finds she has the chance to make amends with her family and friends. Equipped with a new perspective, and assisted by her feisty step-abuela-slash-fairy-godmother, Tatum is ready to start fresh and maybe even get her happy ending along the way. A modern play on the Cinderella story arc, Christina June’s IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE will appeal to fans of Sarah Dessen, Stephanie Perkins, and Jennifer E. Smith.

Advance Praise
"[A] fun, contemporary take on the Cinderella tale that explores what it takes to be yourself while finding you place in life, love and your family." - Lisa Maxwell, author of Unhooked, Sweet Unrest, and Gathering Deep.
LinksThis


Review:
This was a really great debut for Christina June.  This isn’t your typical YA book, sure there are YA characters in it but it’s not about insta love, crushes, and all that romantical stuff.  No, this book was about reality, family, forgiveness, and understanding and finding out the person you are and want to become.  It’s not a comping of age story but more of a coming of understanding story.  It really was endearing.

We meet Tate as she’s about to experience something unexpected and completely not her fault, but here she is at the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong people and things happened.  Because of this one event everything just starts to tumble downhill, or does it?  She’s been accused of something she didn’t do and now she is suffering those consequences by doing community service and being under the strict eye of her stepmother while her dad is away.  Things have never been easy for Tate and Belen, there’s always been something keeping Tate from understanding her stepmother.  That is until this summer of course, the same could go for her stepsister Tilly. 

Throughout the book you watch as Tate continues to grow as a person, outside of her normal bubble.  Learns how to interact with new people, learns that she is really good at something that can help her make a better future for herself.  She also learns about the importance of family and trust.  There are so many great things about this book but I don’t really want to give the plot away too much because it’s something you should definitely pick up and read for yourself.  Don’t worry there is a bit of flirting and romance that will make you feel very hopeful for Tate.

Tate was an overall relatable character, she could very well have been a friend of yours and her experiences are all based in realistic terms.  There are no rainbows and unicorns in this book, just the nitty gritty truth and that’s what I liked most about it.  Yes there were some definite Cinderella undertones, but it wasn’t even about that.  (Because we all know how Cinderella turned out) This book gave you more of a view into Tate and her families’ lives and bought you the understanding that sometimes you just have to look at things from a different perspective.  Great book!


Monday, April 24, 2017

Review: Center Ice by Cate Cameron

Center Ice
By: Cate Cameron
Release Date: May 19, 2015
Series: Corrigan Fall Raiders #1

Description:
The hometown hockey hero won’t know what hit him…

Karen Webber is in small-town hell. After her mother’s death, she moved to Corrigan Falls to live with strangers—her dad and his perfect, shiny new family—and there doesn’t seem to be room for a city girl with a chip on her shoulder. The only person who makes her feel like a real human being is Tyler MacDonald.

But Karen isn’t interested in starting something with a player. And that’s all she keeps hearing about Tyler.

Corrigan Falls is a hockey town, and Tyler’s the star player. But the viselike pressure from his father and his agent are sending him dangerously close to the edge. All people see is hockey—except Karen. Now they’ve managed to find something in each other that they both desperately need. And for the first time, Tyler is playing for keeps…

Review:
This was an absolutely loveable contemporary novel and a great start to a series.  We meet some really great characters who go through some tough times in their young lives.  It’s not always easy being young and going through things that are unexpected and unwanted, sometimes these things happen and they aren’t your fault but you are in them and you learn to deal with them.

We meet Karen who just went through a major loss and is now stuck with the family she never knew.  I know something like this can be tough for both sides of the family, but I think you always have to remember that it’s not the child’s fault, it’s the parent who is at fault.  There was a lot of hostility going around when she first arrived, which is not something easy to handle especially after her own situation.  But luckily she runs into someone unexpectedly who helps her sort through her own feelings.  This is where we meet Mr. Squirrel wrangler himself, Tyler. 

Tyler is going through his own demands in his life coming from his own family.  It’s tough being on a major hockey team and possibly going pro, the people around you tend to try and ride your coattails, it’s even worse when it’s your own family.  Again he has his own demons to deal with and with Karen by his side, they work through things.  There were a lot of serious issues if you dig down deep between everyone in this book but its how they handled them that showed the kind of people they could be.

It was a very addicting book and I read it faster than I’ve read any book before because I really felt for the characters, they were relatable to my life in some ways and that helped.  Just remember it’s how you deal with things in life that make you the person you are, so suck it up buttercup cause life isn’t fair sometimes.  So after reading the third book in this series, I just had to go ahead and read them all.  I’m so happy I did, because I had no idea about the other characters and was just dying to know what happened to them or what is going to possibly happen to them, since it already happened. Starting from the beginning was definitely the right place to go.  I’m off to the next book!

I love this cover by the way it’s sweet. But I do have to say I never heard of these two characters skating together, still super cute cover.