ARC Review: Hooking Up by Helena Hunting

Title: Hooking Up
Author: Helena Hunting
Publisher: Swerve
Publication date: November 7, 2017
Pages: 444
Source: Netgalley
Summary (via Goodreads): Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.

 

Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.

 

They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.

 

Filled with hilariously scandalous situations and enough sexual chemistry to power an airplane from New York City to the South Pacific, Hooking Up is the next standalone, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy from Helena Hunting, the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series and Shacking Up.

 

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I really liked this one. It’s a longer book, but it flew by because I was invested in the characters. I enjoyed all of them, except the ones I was meant to hate. Thank you Netgalley for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I’m giving it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

 

I connected with Amalie’s character quite a bit. I felt heartbroken with her. Obviously based on the summary there’s cheating in this one. The progression between her and the mystery guy was believable, especially when we get to see both sides of their story. I’m not usually a huge dual POV fan, but this one was done well. I liked seeing his side of things A LOT.

 

The mystery guy was fabulous in my opinion. Can I have one of my very own? I’m not going to say his name, although it becomes very apparent who it will be at the beginning of the book. He’s definitely going on my book boyfriend list. Sexy, swoony, and super sweet when he wants to be. The perfect combination.

 

I loved the interactions between the main characters, and even loved some of the secondary characters like Ruby, and Bane. I found myself smiling and chuckling to myself several times while reading. I definitely need to see what else this author has written, because I want more. If you love romance, and don’t mind some cheating, then definitely check this one out!

 

ARC Review: You’re Welcome, Universe by Whitney Gardner

Title: You’re Welcome, Universe
Author: Whitney Gardner
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication date: March 7, 2017
Pages: 304
Source: Netgalley
Summary (via Goodreads): When Julia finds a slur about her best friend scrawled across the back of the Kingston School for the Deaf, she covers it up with a beautiful (albeit illegal) graffiti mural.

 

Her supposed best friend snitches, the principal expels her, and her two mothers set Julia up with a one-way ticket to a “mainstream” school in the suburbs, where she’s treated like an outcast as the only deaf student. The last thing she has left is her art, and not even Banksy himself could convince her to give that up.

 

Out in the ’burbs, Julia paints anywhere she can, eager to claim some turf of her own. But Julia soon learns that she might not be the only vandal in town. Someone is adding to her tags, making them better, showing off—and showing Julia up in the process. She expected her art might get painted over by cops. But she never imagined getting dragged into a full-blown graffiti war.

 

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This one is a little hard for me to rate. I love the message, and the culture, of the book. I just didn’t like the main character as much as I wanted to. Thank you Netgalley for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I’m giving it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

 

I don’t think there’s enough out there focusing on Deaf culture. I haven’t had much exposure to the community, as I only have one Deaf cousin who I haven’t seen in like 20+ years, and I only learned the ASL alphabet (and some other random signs) years ago. But I enjoy reading other people’s experiences, and this book is a sneak peek into a snippet of the Deaf culture.

 

Overall I enjoyed the story, and definitely the art. I wish I could make something half as beautiful as the illustrations scattered throughout this novel. I just didn’t like Julia, the main character, as much as I should have; she was kind of over-dramatic and some of the things she said/did rubbed me the wrong way. I liked YP quite a bit, and Julia’s parents as well. That’s about it though. Most of the other people were meh or annoying, but that seemed purposeful on the author’s part to sell the ending we got.

 

I didn’t find a book boyfriend, but I wouldn’t mind a friend like YP. To close this out, I wish I could make art like what was shown in this book. My kind of art is written only. I know this book was highly recommended, so others might enjoy this more than me. It wasn’t bad; it just wasn’t love at first read.

 

ARC Review: It Started with Goodbye by Christina June

Title: It Started with Goodbye
Author: Christina June
Publisher: Blink
Publication date: May 9, 2017
Pages: 272
Source: Netgalley
Summary (via Goodreads): 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). 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 shows us that sometimes going after what you want means breaking the rules.

 

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This was a super cute read. Predictable, but still very enjoyable. Thank you Netgalley for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I’m giving it 4 out of 5 stars.

 

I obviously enjoyed this one to finish it in two nights. It was a quick read, and I adored the characters. I think a lot of girls can relate to Tatum, and her situation. Maybe not the severity of it, but we all have falling outs with our parents as teens. I really enjoyed virtual Prince Charming, Tatum’s step-abuela slash fairy godmother, and some of the other characters like Abby.

 

Nothing really surprised me while reading this book, but I don’t think books always need to do that. And since it’s a spin on Cinderella, you kind of already know what’s going to happen. Prince Charming was just that…super charming. He’s going on my book boyfriend list for sure. I get swoony just thinking about him. *sigh*

 

I liked the growth Tatum reaches by the end of the story, and how she–and everyone around her–is better for it. I guess I wanted a little more romance, but I know the focus was more on the family dynamics, and Tatum’s journey of discovery. Props for making me a little emotional towards the end. I definitely recommend this book for anyone who likes a cute contemporary read with heart.

 

4 stars

Release Day Blitz & ARC Review: The Fortunate Ones by R.S. Grey

R.S. Grey’s next romantic comedy, THE FORTUNATE ONES, is available now! Read a sneak peek below and be sure to pick up your copy today!

 

About THE FORTUNATE ONES

At Twin Oaks Country Club, there are the fortunate ones, and then there are the rest of us: the waiters, the caddies, the valets, and in my case, the cabana girls. Most days, I’m poolside in a pleated skirt, dishing out margaritas to tycoons and titans. It’s not exactly my dream job, but it does come with one perk…

James Ashwood.

He’s my silver lining in a custom black suit.

Besides being a legacy member at the club, he’s a tech mogul and Austin’s most eligible bachelor. Oh, and those dimples? Yeah, they make my stomach dip too.

On good days, I catch his sleek Porsche winding down the tree-lined drive. On better days, I steal a glimpse of his handsome profile as we pass in the hall. And on the absolute best day, I find him alone at the bar, looking for company.

“Come have a seat.”

Those four little words set me down a path I never could have imagined. Private planes, penthouse suites, and temptations around every corner make it impossible to keep my distance. His world feels decadent and wild—but overindulgence comes with a cost. Every kiss comes with strings. Every erotic encounter is a promise I’m not ready to keep.

When I pump the brakes, he hits the gas. James doesn’t want to go slow—he wants a commitment.

And the thing about the fortunate ones?

They’re used to getting what they want.

Add THE FORTUNATE ONES to your Goodreads list here!

Get your hands on THE FORTUNATE ONES now!

 

Get a Sneak Peek of THE FORTUNATE ONES:

“I missed you today,” he says, his heated gaze lingering on my body.

I step back, and he follows.

He looks like he’s cornering his prey.

“Apparently not enough to make it to dinner,” I point out icily.

“I called the restaurant and told them I’d be late. Didn’t they tell you?”

I cross my arms and glance away.

“Brooke.” He steps closer and gently lifts my chin, forcing me to look back at him. “Fight with me tomorrow.”

I narrow my eyes, angry with him for shelving this discussion so casually. To him, it doesn’t matter that I sat in that restaurant alone, looking like a fool for nearly two hours. He’s brushing off my anger, stepping closer and forcing his way past my defenses.

“I think I’d like to talk about it now.”

I catch the beginning of a smirk just before he leans in to kiss my cheek.

“Are you sure there isn’t anything you’d rather be doing right now?”

He uncrosses my arms and brings them up over his shoulders then steps closer, towering over me. My arms tighten around his neck, but still, I turn away, keeping my mouth from him. His breath hits my neck and he pulls me taut against his hard body, growing more impatient with every moment I try to resist.

“Brooke,” he whispers huskily.

My eyes flutter closed as he bends and presses a kiss to my cheek, my chin, then lower, tipping my head back so he can reach the smooth recess at the nape of my neck. I shiver and he groans, obviously aware of what his touch is doing to me.

 

About R.S. Grey

R.S. Grey is the USA Today bestselling author of thirteen novels, including THE FOXE & THE HOUND. She lives in Texas with her husband and two dogs, and can be found reading, binge-watching reality TV, or practicing yoga! Visit her at rsgrey.com

Website | Twitter | Facebook | R.S. Grey’s Little Reds Facebook Group | Newsletter | Instagram

 

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First, I just want to say that I enjoyed this eARC. It’s different than what I was expecting, but still great. Thanks to the author for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I’m giving it 4 out of 5 stars.

 

This was well-written, and very entertaining (I laughed and cried and swooned), but based on the summary, I was expecting a whirlwind romance. And while there was romance, it wasn’t the main part of the book. There was pretty much zero romance for the first half of the book. And even for some time after that, it still wasn’t super romantic.

 

Even though I’m a die-hard romance fan, and pretty much want it to be a major plot in the books I read, I still liked this story…a lot. The characters were amazing (Brooke, James, and Ellie to name a few), and I enjoyed their interactions. There was a healthy dose of drama with the going ons at the club, the attraction between Brooke and James, etc., so beware if drama’s not your thing.

 

James is definitely going on my book boyfriend list. He’s such a sweetheart, and I just love him to bits. I liked Brooke for the most part, but sometimes I just wanted to shake her and tell her to knock it off and open her eyes. She came to the right conclusion eventually, so points for that.

 

This was a fast, enjoyable read. I can’t wait to see what the author publishes next, and to go back to read her older books. Definitely check her out if you haven’t already! And might I recommend Scoring Wilder by her? It’s fantastic!

 

ARC Review: The Real Thing by Melissa Foster

Title: The Real Thing
Author: Melissa Foster
Series: Sugar Lake #1
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Publication date: September 5, 2017
Pages: 288
Source: Netgalley
Summary (via Goodreads): This sassy, spirited baker is fine with heat—but is her fake fiancé too hot to handle?

 

Bakery owner Willow Dalton’s friendship with Zane Walker has always been a bit complicated. Now a scrumptiously hot A-list actor, Zane’s always had a reputation as player. He’s arrogant, and he’s definitely not boyfriend material. Sure, he did Willow a favor by agreeing to take her virginity before college, but is that reason enough to go along with a fake engagement a decade later—even if it comes with a real diamond ring?

 

Zane should have known better. Nothing involving Willow has ever been easy. Still, he knows her better than anyone, and becoming America’s hottest new leading man means cleaning up his reputation. An “engagement” to curvy, sass-mouthed Willow is the perfect PR move . . . provided no one gets hurt.

 

Now Zane and Willow’s little white lie has turned into an irresistible recipe for sweet temptation. And soon no one will be able to tell the difference between their fake engagement or the real thing—including them.

 

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This is my first book by this author, and overall I’m pretty impressed. The characters were all great, and I liked the dual POV quite a bit in this one. The voices have to be distinct, otherwise multiple POV really irks me. But it was nice that we got to see inside both of their minds, giving us a glance at where they were at mentally and emotionally. Thank you Netgalley for providing me a copy in exchange for a honest review. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.

 

It was a little slow sometimes, but then the romantic parts would kick into high gear and I was hooked again. And let me tell you, there was quite a bit of romance…and sex. I haven’t read a ton of second chance romances (send me your recs!), but I really love the trope. Plus the small town vibe is usually adorable in books, and this one was no exception. Small towns are not so cute in real life. At least not the ones I’ve lived in.

 

Zane is total book boyfriend material. Where can I find a guy like him? *sighs* He was so caring, thoughtful, etc. I’m not going to tell you all about the things, but he does a lot for Willow. I absolutely adored Willow for the most part, and her family is definitely up there in my favorites. There were so many cute moments, which I don’t want to share, because it would spoil the fun.

 

It’s a pretty short book (less than 300 pages), so if you like second chance romance, sweet treats, and super cuteness overload, read this ASAP. I can’t wait to read more from this author. I’m off to check when book two of this series comes out, and what it’s all about.

 

4 stars

Sunday Street Team: Internet Famous by Danika Stone Review + Giveaway

Sunday Street Team

 

Welcome to the Sunday Street Team! I received an eARC of this book in exchange for a honest review. This book was pretty good overall *swoons for Laurent*. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.

 

Title: Internet Famous
Author:
Danika Stone
Publisher:
Swoon Reads
Publication date:
June 6, 2017
Summary (via Goodreads): High school senior and internet sensation Madison Nakama seems to have it all: a happy family, good grades, and a massive online following for her pop-culture blog. But when her mother suddenly abandons the family, Madi finds herself struggling to keep up with all of her commitments.

 

Fandom to the rescue! As her online fans band together to help, an online/offline flirtation sparks with Laurent, a French exchange student. Their internet romance—played out in the comments section of her MadLibs blog—attracts the attention of an internet troll who threatens the separation of Madi’s real and online personas. With her carefully constructed life unraveling, Madi must uncover the hacker’s identity before he can do any more damage, or risk losing the people she loves the most… Laurent included.

 

Pre-order Links: Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK) | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository


 

 

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I signed up for the Sunday Street Team for Danika’s last YA book, so I had to sign up for this one. As I stated in my review of her last book, I’m a huge believer in fandoms. And while this book was less fandom-y, I still really enjoyed it. I received a copy from Netgalley to review, and ended up giving this book 4 out of 5 stars.

 

One thing I should mention off the bat is the kinship I felt with Madi. I have a hard time interacting with people outside of the internet as well, at least initially. I am very introverted and I don’t open up until I really know someone. So yay for a main character I can relate to. And let me just say that I fully appreciated Laurent and his French self. *drools* Such a fine specimen of YA/NA male goodness. He’s going on my book boyfriend list.

 

Before I go any further into what I loved about Laurent, and some other characters, let me just say that I really disliked Madi’s mother, and an authority figure who I’ll refer to as She Who Must Not Be Named. The authority figure was kind of an evil witch, and Madi’s mother needed to get her head out of her butt in my opinion. Gross image, but so true. I’m kind of glad she was MIA throughout most of the book. #sorrynotsorry

 

Madi’s sister, Sarah, was a great secondary character. I loved how Madi interacted with her most of the time, and how they helped one another (mostly Madi helping Sarah, but Sarah came through for Madi in her time of need against the troll). Speaking of the troll, I pretty much knew who it was from the moment they started trolling. Not sure if everyone else who read this is in the same boat, or if I’m just a great guesser. I’m curious to know. So the big reveal was more of an affirmation of my suspicions. I always want to be surprised by books, and it rarely happens.

 

Okay, so lets talk about Laurent. He’s gorgeous, geeky, artistic, and speaks French at random times. I had to translate like a quarter of what he said, but seriously, I want someone to speak French to me all day, every day. He’s beyond perfect, the whole package. The flirtation between Madi and Laurent is half the reason why I couldn’t put the book down. There were some serious sparks between these two. And to kind of get off topic, but not really, I liked how Madi’s dad encouraged her to be with Laurent. He knew that Laurent made Madi happy, and he wanted her to have something that kept a smile on her face. Yay Madi’s dad! His parenting (later in the book) made up for her disaster of a mom.

 

I didn’t keep track of any lines, because the ones I wanted to save were mostly French…and kind of gave things away. Just read the book so you can swoon over Laurent too!

 

Final note: Another great book from Danika. Also, in case anyone is confused by the YA/NA tags, I think the subject matter is within the YA category. But with Madi being 18, and Laurent being in college, they’re NA aged. I can’t wait to see what Danika comes up with next. P.S. The ending of this book is seriously swoony.

 

 


 

about the author

 

Danika Stone is an author, artist, and educator who discovered a passion for writing fiction while in the throes of her Masters thesis. A self-declared bibliophile, Danika now writes novels for both teens (All the Feels and Internet Famous) and adults (Edge of Wild and Intaglio). When not writing, Danika can be found hiking in the Rockies, planning grand adventures, and spending far too much time online. She lives with her husband, three sons, and a houseful of imaginary characters in a windy corner of Alberta, Canada.

 

Ms. Stone is represented by Morty Mint of Mint Literary Agency.

 

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August SST: Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow Review + Giveaway

Sunday Street Team

 

Welcome to the Sunday Street Team! I received an eARC of this book in exchange for a honest review. This book was dark, but so amazing. I gave it 5 out of 5 stars.

 


Girl in PiecesTitle:
Girl in Pieces
Author: Kathleen Glasgow
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication date:
August 30, 2016
Summary (via Goodreads): Charlotte Davis is in pieces. At seventeen she’s already lost more than most people lose in a lifetime. But she’s learned how to forget. The thick glass of a mason jar cuts deep, and the pain washes away the sorrow until there is nothing but calm. You don’t have to think about your father and the river. Your best friend, who is gone forever. Or your mother, who has nothing left to give you.

 

Every new scar hardens Charlie’s heart just a little more, yet it still hurts so much. It hurts enough to not care anymore, which is sometimes what has to happen before you can find your way back from the edge.

 


 

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I was beyond excited to read this book for the Sunday Street Team. I think more people should tell darker stories, because they exist in our world. This was an amazing book. The writing was heartbreakingly beautiful. I received a copy from Netgalley to review, and ended up giving this book 5 out of 5 stars.

 

As soon as I picked up this book, I pretty much didn’t want to put it down…except to take some breaks when my heart felt like it had cracked open in my chest. The book wasn’t all darkness, but it definitely wasn’t a happy book. Which is fine with me, because life isn’t sunshine and daisies 24/7. Charlie’s story, and even a lot of the secondary characters stories, will resonate with a lot of people.

 

I absolutely loved Charlie’s character. She seemed so real. My heart ached for her, and the people surrounding her, that have to deal with inner and outer demons. I really liked a lot of the female characters in this book, but barely any of the male characters–except a couple. A lot of the guys were jackasses. Charlie goes through so much in this book, and by the end, I’m glad she has people she can turn to, people she can rely on.

 

Honestly, I think everyone should read this book. It reminds you that sometimes bad things–overwhelming things–happen. But with some supportive friends, you can embrace life to its fullest. One of my favorite things about this book is that you can feel the raw pain and emotion. Kathleen wasn’t scared to show the downs of life, to show how the tornado building inside you can lash out at any moment.

 

I made notes of some gorgeous lines while reading: “We all have our Kiefer stages, when we want to destroy ourselves in order to create. To see if that’s beautiful, too.” and “I say the wrong thing, if I can bring myself to say anything at all. I’ve always felt like an intrusion, a giant blob of wrong.” and “I’m so unwhole. I don’t know where all the pieces of me are, how to fit them together, how to make them stick. Or if I even can.”

 

Final note: An amazing book. It’s definitely dark, but it has an optimistic ending. I’m so glad I read this book. As soon as I finished reading, I bought myself a copy for my personal collection. I’d highly recommend this one.

 

If you or someone you know is struggling and needs help, please consider contacting:
Crisis Text Line: Text START to 741-741
National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
To Write Love on Her Arms: https://twloha.com/find-help/local-resources/
National Runaway Hotline: 1-800-621-4000

 

5 stars

 


 

about the author

 

Kathleen Glasgow lives in Tucson, Arizona. She writes for the radio show The Writer’s Almanac and can probably provide you with some interesting anecdotes about historical literary figures if you asked nicely. You can find out more about Kathleen by following her on Twitter: @kathglasgow, Instagram, @misskathleenglasgow (where she posts about sunsets, depression, spirit circles, and books) or her website: kathleenglasgowbooks.com.

 


 

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July SST: Signs of You by Emily France Review + Giveaway

Sunday Street Team

 

Welcome to the Sunday Street Team! I received an eARC of this book in exchange for a honest review. This book was definitely unique. I didn’t love it as much as I wanted though. I gave it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

 


Signs of YouTitle:
 Signs of You
Author: Emily France
Publisher: Soho Teen
Publication date:
July 19, 2016
Summary (via Goodreads): Since sixteen-year-old Riley Strout lost her mother two years ago, her saving grace has been her quirky little family in the grief support group she joined as a freshman. Jay, Kate, and Noah understand her pain; each lost a loved one, and they’ve stuck together in spite of their differences, united by tragedies only they understand.

 

When Riley thinks she spots her mother shopping in a grocery store, she fears she is suffering some sort of post-traumatic stress. Then Jay and Kate report similar experiences. Only Noah hasn’t had some kind of vision, which is perhaps why he’s become so skeptical and distant.

 

When Noah disappears, Riley fears she’s lost another loved one. As they frantically search for him, she, Kate, and Jay are drawn into the mystery surrounding a relic that belonged to Jay’s dead father and contains clues about the afterlife. Riley finds herself wrestling with her feelings for both Noah and Jay—which have become clear only in Noah’s absence. If Riley is to help those she loves, and herself, she must set things right with the one she’s lost.

 


 

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When I saw that this book was being offered for the Sunday Street Team, I was so excited. Overall, it was a good book and the writing was so beautiful in places, but I just didn’t connect with the characters and story like I was expecting. I received a copy from Edelweiss to review, and ended up giving this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.

 

One thing I can definitely praise this book for is being unique. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything like it. But with that being said, it was a little weird for my tastes. I liked the beginning of the book, got a little lost/uncertain about the middle, and really liked the ending.

 

The book is only 240 pages, which isn’t long, but I felt like it could have been shorter. At times I felt not a lot was happening, and I think that contributed to my not liking the book as much as I wanted. I did like Riley a lot overall, and Noah was a doll. Kate was pretty entertaining, but I really didn’t like Jay’s character very much. One of my favorite parts of this book was their friendship (I could have done without Jay personally).

 

There’s a major lack of parents in this book (besides the dead ones which are mentioned quite a bit). I think the only parent that’s shown is Riley’s dad, and even he’s not that prominent. The rest were MIA. I guess maybe that’s the nature of parents going through grief?

 

Noah was probably one of my favorite characters of this book. He’s pretty quiet, maybe a little bit of an outsider (even in their group), and very observant. By the end of the book, I loved him to pieces. He’s a new addition to my book boyfriend list. One thing to note is that there’s not a lot of romance in this book. Sure Riley’s got a major crush on someone, but the focus of the book isn’t romance.

 

I made notes of beautiful lines while I was updating my progress in this book. There were quite a few: “…I know we’ve learned something about loss: when you find friends who know it, who’ve been through it, who really, really get the ache that moves in and lives in your bones, it gets a little easier.” and “My deepest, darkest fear is that maybe we don’t ever get over some things. Maybe we just carry them around, permanently, these heavy, dull aches in the heart. And maybe they don’t heal; maybe we just learn to work around the pain.” and “…maybe it’s no more complicated or romantic than that the damaged are drawn to the damaged. Connected by hurt.”

 

Final note: A good book, but I didn’t love it like I’d hoped I would. For anyone that likes contemporary books that are a little darker, and kind out there subject wise, check this one out. It’s got some beautiful writing people!

 

3.5 stars

 


 

about the author

 

Emily France graduated from Brown University before going on to law school, where she was the editor-in-chief of the law review. She finds creative inspiration in all things spiritual, from sitting with Benedictine monks for 4 a.m. vigils in a Rocky Mountain monastery to trekking to Buddhist and Hindu temples in India. Now she writes full-time and lives with her husband and their fearless Tibetan Spaniel in sunny Colorado—the closest place to Nirvana she’s found. Signs of You is her debut novel. Visit Emily online at www.emilyfrancebooks.com and follow her on Twitter @EmilyFranceBook.

 


 

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June SST: All the Feels by Danika Stone Review + Giveaway

Sunday Street Team

 

Welcome to the Sunday Street Team! I received an eARC of this book in exchange for a honest review. This book was really good. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.

 

All the FeelsTitle: All the Feels
Author: Danika Stone
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Publication date:
June 7, 2016
Summary (via Goodreads): College freshman Liv is more than just a fangirl: The Starveil movies are her life… So, when her favorite character, Captain Matt Spartan, is killed off at the end of the last movie, Liv Just. Can’t. Deal.

 

Tired of sitting in her room sobbing, Liv decides to launch an online campaign to bring her beloved hero back to life. With the help of her best friend, Xander, actor and steampunk cosplayer extraordinaire, she creates #SpartanSurvived, a campaign to ignite the fandom. But as her online life succeeds beyond her wildest dreams, Liv is forced to balance that with the pressures of school, her mother’s disapproval, and her (mostly nonexistent and entirely traumatic) romantic life. A trip to DragonCon with Xander might be exactly what she needs to figure out what she really wants.

 


 

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I’m glad I signed up to read this book for the Sunday Street Team. I’m a huge believer in fandoms (Harry Potter, Hunger Games, Grisha, etc.), so I was super excited to see a book that focused on a fandom like All the Feels did. I received a copy from Netgalley to review, and ended up giving this book 4 out of 5 stars.

 

So obviously, one of my favorite things about the book was the fandom aspect! Duh. I think a lot of people can appreciate Liv’s devotion to Starveil. She can be a little obsessed at times, but what true fan isn’t kind of obsessed with their fandom? *waits for a response* All fans are kind of obsessed with their fandoms, you say? Yes, you’re correct.

 

Besides the fandom aspect, I felt a kinship with Liv over her anxiety over social situations, like dating and group gatherings, and her need to stay under the radar by doing things like dressing casually instead of wearing things that drew attention to her. I kind of feel like Liv could be my long lost twin.

 

Xander was another great character. Not really a book boyfriend for me, because he’s not really my kind of guy, but I thought he was adorable still. Because his real life is all about cosplaying, I was a little iffy about his appeal at first. But he’s a great best friend to Liv, which is the most important thing. He’s pretty sweet too, so yay for Xander! I kind of hated Liv’s mom, and her mom’s boyfriend. They were such downers in the book, and I felt like the mom listened to her boyfriend way too much, and not enough to Liv. Liv’s mom had a change of heart right at the end of the book, but I don’t really buy it. I’m sure she’ll go back to hating Liv being in the fandom.

 

Some of the minor characters in the book were pretty interesting, like the online fandom people Liv finally met at DragonCon. One thing I really liked was that the book including texts and social media because that’s so relevant in our society nowadays. I would suggest getting a physical, versus ebook, copy of the book if possible for that reason. While I don’t think I’d ever be part of the Starveil fandom, I can appreciate everyone’s love and dedication to it. The ending was pretty good, but there some things that I felt were unresolved by the end of the book, and the second to last chapter felt kind of off/rushed. For the story to get to that point and not focus on it a little more felt like a letdown.

 

Final note: A great read for anyone who loves a fandom of their own. I think a lot of people could relate to Liv’s story.

 

4 stars

 


 

about the author

 

Danika Stone is an author, artist, and educator who discovered a passion for writing fiction while in the throes of her Masters thesis. A self-declared bibliophile, Danika now writes novels for both adults (The Intaglio Series and Ctrl Z) and teens (All the Feels). When not writing, Danika can be found hiking in the Rockies, planning grand adventures, and spending far too much time online. She lives with her husband, three sons, and a houseful of imaginary characters in a windy corner of Alberta, Canada.

 

Ms. Stone is represented by Morty Mint of Mint Literary Agency.

 


 

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May SST: Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider Review + Giveaway

Sunday Street Team

 

Welcome to the Sunday Street Team! I received an eARC of this book in exchange for a honest review. This book was amazing! I gave it 5 out of 5 stars.

 

Summer of SloaneTitle: Summer of Sloane
Author: Erin L. Schneider
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Publication date:
May 3, 2016
Summary (via Goodreads): Warm Hawaiian sun. Lazy beach days. Flirty texts with her boyfriend back in Seattle.

 

These are the things seventeen-year-old Sloane McIntyre pictured when she imagined the summer she’d be spending at her mom’s home in Hawaii with her twin brother, Penn. Instead, after learning an unthinkable secret about her boyfriend, Tyler, and best friend, Mick, all she has is a fractured hand and a completely shattered heart.

 

Once she arrives in Honolulu, though, Sloane hopes that Hawaii might just be the escape she needs. With beach bonfires, old friends, exotic food, and the wonders of a waterproof cast, there’s no reason Sloane shouldn’t enjoy her summer. And when she meets Finn McAllister, the handsome son of a hotel magnate who doesn’t always play by the rules, she knows he’s the perfect distraction from everything that’s so wrong back home.

 

But it turns out a measly ocean isn’t nearly enough to stop all the emails, texts, and voicemails from her ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, desperate to explain away their betrayal. And as her casual connection with Finn grows deeper, Sloane’s carefree summer might not be as easy to find as she’d hoped. Weighing years of history with Mick and Tyler against their deception, and the delicate possibility of new love, Sloane must decide when to forgive, and when to live for herself.

 


 

review6

 

I’m so glad I signed up for this Sunday Street Team opportunity, because I just loved this book. Erin did such an amazing job with her debut novel. I received a copy from Netgalley to review, and ended up giving this book 5 out of 5 stars (and added it to my favorites list).

 

The writing in this book was incredible. It felt like you were watching a movie play out, or reading Sloane’s personal diary, or something else equally amazing. I didn’t want to put this book down at all. It’s definitely a book that you could read in one sitting. I unfortunately had plans and couldn’t do so, but when I re-read this book many times for years to come, I’m sure it’ll be a ‘one sitting’ book.

 

Sloane was a fantastic main character. The beginning of the book started out intense, and I felt terrible for her. But quickly things start turning around once she went to Hawaii. The beautiful imagery and overall atmosphere of the Hawaii trip made me want to visit there ASAP. I really enjoyed Sloane’s family: her twin brother Penn, her dad, and her mom/stepdad (although you don’t see that much of the stepdad). I thought they were all pretty likeable characters. Sloane’s Hawaii friends, old and new, were pretty fantastic as well…especially Finn. Cue swooning.

 

I loved Finn’s character so much. He made me mad a couple times while I was reading, but I couldn’t stay mad at him for long. He’s so much better than Tyler, the toolbag. I hated, hated, hated Tyler’s character vehemently throughout the whole book, except not quite as much towards the end. He still sucked though. Finn makes such an excellent addition to my book boyfriend list, up near the top.

 

In addition to adoring Finn, I also adored his little sister Luce. She was a good secondary character that helped move things along throughout the book. The backstories for most of the people in the book were kind of tragic, but most people do have some tragedy in their lives. I think that’s another aspect that makes this book so real, so perfect.

 

I only kept track of one funny line while reading: “It looks fast and slightly dangerous and I have to admit, it makes me feel kinda like a badass. Well, in a might-pee-my-pants badass kind of way.” I spent most of the time just swept up into the story that I didn’t stop to write down lines.

 

Final note: Such an amazing debut novel! I’m recommending this to anyone who enjoys contemporary books. I ordered a copy for my personal library, and can’t wait to re-read this beauty over and over again.

 

5 stars

 


 

about the author

 

Erin L. Schneider is native to the Pacific Northwest, attended college in Honolulu – and although Hawaiian – should never be allowed on a surfboard. With more than twenty years in corporate merchandising, she’s now a full-time writer living in Seattle with her husband, Neal; their baby boy, Kellan; a rowdy German shepherd named Ronin; and two crazy cats, Ono and Poke. She’s a member of both the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and SCBWI, and is also co-founder of the YA Buccaneers.

 

SUMMER OF SLOANE is her debut novel, out May 3, 2016 from Disney-Hyperion. Visit Erin online at www.erinlschneider.com or on Twitter: @ErinLSchneider1.

 

Erin is represented by literary agent Lisa Grubka of Fletcher & Company.

 


 

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