Thursday, June 26, 2014

Fall from India Place by Samantha Young

I’d forgotten that I’d pre-ordered this book, so when it showed up on my Kindle I was pretty excited.  So much for my planned summer reading list.   India Place takes place several years after Before Jamaica Lane (click to read that review.)  Ellie’s little sister, Hannah, is all grown up and and still not really over her first crush, Marco.  Having read all the other books in this series, I remembered a bit about Marco.  But this turns out to be the weakest of the series so far.  Hannah’s fear of heartbreak causes her to do some very foolish things, it’s as if, she’s never really grownup at all.  I got annoyed at Hannah, and all her stubbornness.

It was nice to catch up with former characters, but I could have used a family tree to keep up with all the new children.  I had a hard time remembering who belonged to whom.  I wouldn’t start with this book, even though all of these can be read as stand alone novels.

Goodreads summary:

The New York Times bestselling author of On Dublin Street and Down London Road returns with a story about letting go of the past and learning to trust in the future…

When Hannah Nichols last saw Marco D’Alessandro, five long years ago, he broke her heart. The bad boy with a hidden sweet side was the only guy Hannah ever loved—and the only man she’s ever been with. After one intense night of giving into temptation, Marco took off, leaving Scotland and Hannah behind. Shattered by the consequences of their night together, Hannah has never truly moved on.

Leaving Hannah was the biggest mistake of Marco’s life, something he has deeply regretted for years. So when fate reunites them, he refuses to let her go without a fight. Determined to make her his, Marco pursues Hannah, reminding her of all the reasons they’re meant to be together.…

But just when Marco thinks they’re committed to a future together, Hannah makes a discovery that unearths the secret pain she’s been hiding from him, a secret that could tear them apart before they have a real chance to start over again…

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Clipped Wings by Helena Hunting

Tragic accident
brutal murders
survivor’s guilt
panic attacks
hot sex
nasty exs

If you’re into all the angst and secret keeping that NA romances have become then this is the book for you.  I’ve listed all the things I consider “hot buttons” for the genre above. I’m halfway through and the drama has just escalated again.  A lot of it could be diffused with heartfelt conversation. If you aren’t tired of the “You’ll stop liking me if you find out I’m not the perfect person I’m pretending to be,” plot device, keep reading.  This feels like it could be a start of  series, as there are a couple of people at the shops that would make good/typical main characters for more books.  

My copy needs editing some more before release.  It also needs to have it’s formatting checked. Many of the words have spaces in them, in the wrong places.

Goodreads summary:

An emotional love story that follows the touch-and-go relationship of Hayden and Tenley; two young people who desperately want to love and be loved but are afraid to completely let go of their pasts.

As Hayden and Tenley navigate their newfound but slightly unstable relationship, they want to trust each other, but Hayden is hiding a dark and shameful past that he doesn't ever want Tenley to find out about. And Tenley has secrets of her own that could make Hayden run away forever. When Tenley asks Hayden to put a beautifully elaborate tattoo across her back, the two form what they thought was an unshakeable bond. But when Tenley's past shows up on her doorstep, will Hayden stand by her side...or run?

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Wednesday why not read...Crash into You by Katie McGarry

I looked forward to Isaiah’s story, after his heartbreak with Beth.  I wanted him to have what/who he really needed rather than what he thought he wanted.  Rachel needs someone, too; someone who will see her for who she really is, unlike her family, who see her as a replacement daughter/sister.

Although it took me a while to read this one, I did like it.  It held up to my expectations for a KM novel.  I was worried that Rachel and Isaiah would spend too much time keeping secrets and  I really dislike that trope, but I should have had more faith in Ms. McGarry. Secrets were kept, just not endlessly and without quite as much angst as normally-because they actually talk to each other (lovely for a change) and both Isaiah and Rachel talk to friends or siblings.

I’m glad to have ARCs of these novels, as I can’t keep them in the library. I read this one with one of my students to help motivate me and we had a fun time talking about it together.  Katie McGarry’s books have become an auto-buy for my library, and an auto-read for quite a few of my girls.  

Goodreads summary:
From acclaimed author Katie McGarry comes an explosive new tale of a good girl with a reckless streak, a street-smart guy with nothing to lose, and a romance forged in the fast lane. 

The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life—that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind. 

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look. 

But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Wednesday why not read...Safekeeping by Karen Hesse

Radley is in Haiti when a militant group overthrows the US government.  She’s been working at an orphanage and decides to get back home to find her parents.  Once back in the US she realizes that things are very different.  Her parents are not at home and she decides to head north to find them.

This is what I would call a current dystopian.  It feels much more realistic than Hunger Games or Divergent.  It could really happen.  But for all of the realness, Safekeeping is a gentle tale.  One of survival, friendships forged, lessons learned, and hope.  Interspersed with Karen Hesse’s own haunting photos, Radley’s search leads her to more than just answers; she finds purpose.  

This book is filled with actual pictures, making it a short read, yet Karen Hesse’s lyrical writing draws the reader wonderful word pictures to add to the visual imagery.  On page 37, “Now the statue, green with age, rages as only bronze can, in cold frustration.”  

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Wednesday why not read...Push and shove by C. L. Stone

21847609  Kindle

This time around there is a little bit more intertwining with the Scarab Beetle series, Ms. Stone also writes.  Corey and Axel make very brief appearances, and the synth drug JH14 plays a larger role in the high school.  Sand finally gets her first kiss (no spoilers on from whom!) and gets a bit of an explanation of her future with the boys and why they do what they do with her, but I’m still a bit frustrated by her naivete, even if we can blame that on step-mom never signing the sex-ed form.  

So much drama happens that it’s no wonder she forgets to eat and is exhausted.  Another one of the boys figures out he may love her, but isn’t quite willing to go the sharing route.  It could and will get even more complicated, I’m sure.  I hate waiting for series to complete.  At least this set is self pubbed and not being drug out for a year between each one, like a traditional publisher would.  I think I’d bail to wait for the whole thing and then never get it because sales would drop.  I hate for summer to go too quickly, but I'm ready for fall releases!