Six Months Later by Natalie D. Richards

17343998From Goodreads: She has everything she’s ever wanted. But not her memory…

When Chloe fell asleep in study hall, it was the middle of May. When she wakes up, snow is on the ground and she can’t remember the last six months of her life. 

Before, she’d been a mediocre student. Now, she’s on track for valedictorian and being recruited by Ivy League schools. Before, she never had a chance with super jock Blake. Now he’s her boyfriend. Before, she and Maggie were inseparable. Now her best friend won’t speak to her.

What happened to her? Remembering the truth could be more dangerous than she knows…

Review:

What attracted me at first about Six Months Later was the fact that Chloe had lost 6 months of her life without realizing it. HOW DOES ONE LOSE SO MUCH TIME? And so randomly?! One day she wakes up in the library and all of a sudden her life is completely different. I would be mildly terrified if I lost a huge chunk of memory. It’s worse when apparently no one else realizes that Chloe has lost her memory. Everyone else in the book is acting so nonchalantly and when Chloe actually tries to say, “Hey, I lost 6 months of my memory, help!” they just shrug her off. That must’ve been so tough!

I really sympathized with Chloe. On one hand, her life is completely perfect: awesome grades, an incredibly high SAT score, her parents are happy with her, and she has the perfect boyfriend. On the other hand, everything seems too good to be true. She doesn’t know how her used to be mediocre grades are now absolutely perfect, she is developing feelings for the juvenile delinquent with dark hair and blue eyes, and her best friend isn’t talking to her. I liked seeing Chloe’s struggle as to understanding why this was happening. My only problem with Chloe is that she wasn’t aggressive enough to look for answers. She’d be like “what happened to me?” and someone would say, “I can’t tell you”, and then she’d say, “Okay, fine” and that was the end of the conversation! I thought you wanted to know how you lost your memory!

I’ll be honest here: for you to enjoy this book you’ll have to have a certain tolerance for believing the unbelievable. If you’re one who doesn’t like unrealistic situations, then you’ll probably dislike this book. Believing that Chloe, who could barely keep her eyes open while reading a textbook, would be able to score a 2155 score on the SAT is pretty out there. Also, SAT score or not, to be accepted into an Ivy League school you need more than a high SAT score. Chloe didn’t have the GPA for this, however we’re supposed to believe it for the story to move along. I mean in the end everything is explained, but I would’ve liked a little bit more consistency in the story.

Despite all these little problems, I still really enjoyed this book. I liked that it always kept me guessing. I liked that everyone contributed to Chloe’s story.

There was a love triangle here, but not really. I can’t explain it without spoiling you. However I’ll say that I really didn’t mind the triangle much because it wasn’t really the main focus of the book.

Let me tell you something about the mystery: you’ll never be able to figure it out until the end. Honestly it’s very difficult to predict, although you may figure out who the bad guys are. Once you do figure it out, however, you’ll be left pretty surprised. I liked this new twist into how someone suffered some really extreme amnesia. I liked that it wasn’t a typical outcome.

Overall, while there were some pretty unbelievable aspects in this book, the mystery of Chloe’s amnesia while have you passing the pages to discover what happened. It’s a wonderfully written book by Natalie D. Richards and I would definitely read another book by her.

My memory decides to have some sort of massive file corruption and these are the months I missed? What about my years in braces? Or the summer my dog and grandmother died a month apart? No, I get to miss the six months that turned my life from train wreck into perfection.

Lovely.

3halfstars

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LoveMarianne

Infinity + One by Amy Harmon

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From Goodreads: When two unlikely allies become two unwitting outlaws, will two unforgettable lovers defy unbeatable odds?Bonnie Rae Shelby is a superstar. She’s rich. She’s beautiful. She’s impossibly famous. And Bonnie Rae Shelby wants to die. 
Finn Clyde is a nobody. He’s broken. He’s brilliant. He’s impossibly cynical. And all he wants is a chance at life. One girl. One boy. An act of compassion. A bizarre set of circumstances. And a choice – turn your head and walk away, or reach out your hand and risk it all? 

With that choice, the clock starts ticking on a man with a past and a girl who can’t face the future, counting down the seconds in an adventure riddled with heartbreak and humor, misunderstanding and revelation. With the world against them, two very different people take a journey that will not only change their lives, but may cost them their lives as well. Infinity + One is a tale of shooting stars and fame and fortune, of gilded cages and iron bars, of finding a friend behind a stranger’s face, and discovering love in the oddest of places.

Review…

Amy Harmon will ALWAYS be one of my favorites. She’s one of the reasons why I started supporting Indie Authors. If you haven’t read any of her books, you’re missing out! And I will admit it now, Infinity + One is so hard to review.  I didn’t love it so hard just like I did at A Different Blue, but, I didn’t hate it either. So, it wasn’t good but it wasn’t also bad…

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I really don’t know. Okay, let’s go through the character first. Amy Harmon doesn’t make over used characters, that’s one of the reasons I completely admire her. So I’m really expecting to like (or even love) Bonnie and Clyde. And I did, only at first though. Bonnie is such a hard character to read. She went from suicidal (she met Finn at a bridge where she wants to jump) to being hyper to being deeply depressed again to I don’t even know what is she feeling anymore. And for her age? There’s a lot of immaturity which doesn’t fit her character at all since she’s this big rockstar (like Hannah Montana. LOL) and she’s the breadwinner of her family. Suicidal? I get that. But being immature?

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Then there’s Clyde… Well, Clyde is.. intense. He’s an ex-convict and a mathematician and at first, he’s really grumpy. He just hates how Bonnie is affecting her. And I honestly don’t have anything to say about Finn anymore because I’m dozing off as I’m writing this review because FINN is so serious and grumpy, I think I can count on my finger his lines in this book. (But I would not do that because I’m too lazy) They’re  skillfully written characters. Harmon gave enough (actually a lot) of background so you will really feel like you know them.

And then their paths crossed and….

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NOTHING. I repeat, nothing has happened in  this book but them traveling around the country and staring at each other and guessing what’s on each others mind. I’m halfway throughout the book and I’m like: wait wasn’t there supposed to be a plot somewhere in here?

Oh and the Romance? There’s no sparks. No intense moments. No swooning-off-my-feet incident.  Just… nothing. And I struggled the whole time I’m reading. Every chapter, my brain is asking me to DNF it already but Harmon’s strong writing keeps me going. Until the end, I was hoping that something will happen but.. it’s just disappointment. I actually think that 3 stars is so generous of me, but it’s Amy Harmon. And I adore her, and even though this bored me almost to death.. her writing is nothing but beautiful.

I highly recommend A Different Blue if you wanna know why I love this author so much. Though the writing is brilliant and the characters are well written, the plot fell a little short for me. I guess I loved her previous books so much that I have a very high expectation on this one. I still recommend Infinity+One  for people who love slow paced books and fast building romance (the kind where you’ll say “wait they’re together already?”) but nonetheless, still enjoyable. Oh and when I said, slow paced…

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LovePaula

Bookish Craft ~ Book Page Wreath

I thought I’d share a little something different this week. I enjoy crafts almost as much as I enjoy books, so of course I was interested in combining the two! I kept seeing these gorgeous wreaths made from book pages, like this one:

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I loved it so much that I really wanted to try to make one. However, the book lover and former library assistant in me did not want to tear up books. While working at a library, I learned how to repair books, so the thought of tearing them up made me apprehensive. Seriously. But the wreaths look sooooo pretty!! I kept wavering until I found a solution to make me feel better about destroying books. If the books were already falling apart, then maybe I could help them along instead of repairing them, right? Right!! That logic made me less anxious, so I found the instructions and supply list to make that gorgeous Faux Rosewood wreath using book pages here:

http://www.bystephanielynn.com/2010/11/diy-faux-curled-rosewood-wreath-made-from-rolled-recycled-book-pages.html

I believe that is where the post/instructions originated from, and there are detailed instructions and pictures. It’s a great tutorial! However, I tweaked everything a little for my own preferences. I use either a 12 inch or 14 inch foam wreath – either white or green. I cover mine with book pages before I begin so that if anything shows through, it blends in nicely. I used the trade paperback sized books for all the book pages because I think they tear out better, plus that’s what I had on hand at the time that was falling apart!!

For the actual roses, I only used 2 sheets of book pages per rose because I was trying to stretch out my supplies a little. And, after several attempts, I finally got into the hang of this project! Once I got going on it, I quit drawing the spiral circle on the pages and just started cutting in a spiral. I also round off the corners of the pages a little. After I roll the pages into a rose, I slap a piece of tape on the bottom to help hold it together. If you don’t glue it immediately to the wreath, sometimes it starts unraveling. Sometimes I’ll make a bunch of roses first, then glue them on the wreath. Other times, I make a rose and then glue it immediately. It just depends on my rhythm and mood. You have to use hot glue to adhere the roses to the wreath, and this project turns me into a hot glue queen. I always use A LOT of hot glue because I don’t want to have go back and re-glue later.

Here’s my finished product:

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This project turned out very well for me!! I love it when a plan comes together (or when a Pinterest find actually works!)!! It’s not a very difficult project; however, it is very time consuming and you must have plenty of patience (and lots of hot glue!). I don’t know how long the whole process takes because sometimes I do the steps in spurts, and I’ve never just sat and worked on a wreath from start to finish – too many distractions in my house!!

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I ended up enjoying making the wreath more than I thought I would, and have since made 6 – and 3 of those are in my own house, but I made the others for a sweet friend, a cousin, and my MIL.

This is the one on my front door, I put it on back in January.

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This is it now, after 6 months of being out in the weather and sun!

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If you decide to attempt one, please let me know and post pictures!! Any other crafty bookworms out there? Have you tried any bookish crafts?

LoveTricia

The Saint (The Original Sinners #5) by Tiffany Reisz

the saintFrom goodreads: In the beginning, there was him. 

Gutsy, green-eyed Eleanor never met a rule she didn’t want to break. She’s sick of her mother’s zealotry and the confines of Catholic school, and declares she’ll never go to church again. But her first glimpse of beautiful, magnetic Father Søren Stearns and his lust-worthy Italian motorcycle is an epiphany. Suddenly, daily Mass seems like a reward, and her punishment is the ache she feels when they’re apart. He is intelligent and insightful and he seems to know her intimately at her very core. Eleanor is consumed—and even she knows that can’t be right. 

But when one desperate mistake nearly costs Eleanor everything, it is Søren who steps in to save her. She vows to repay him with complete obedience…and a whole world opens before her as he reveals to her his deepest secrets. 

Danger can be managed—pain, welcomed. Everything is about to begin.

Review…

There is nothing like this series.

Nothing.

“It is here that love is to be found – not hidden away in corners but in the midst of occasions of sin.”

I don’t read a lot of erotic fiction but when I do its go big or go home. *slinks away* Now, I know what you’re thinking but before judge me for reading this type of genre, let me just say, Tiffany Reisz is one fantastic author.  She writes stories that are profound and heartbreaking with elements of humor.  And yes, the stories are titillating.

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When I read The Original Sinners series last year, I loved it.  It’s addictive, captivating, moving, shocking and it took me on a journey like no other.  When I found out about The Saint (The White Years), I wasn’t sure how I would feel about it because the first four books were and are perfect and it ended in a way I could deal with and then this book happened. (Note: if you do read this series, start with The Siren)

I didn’t realize how much I missed Eleanor and Soren and while I loved this book, it wasn’t without flaws.  I’m not a fan of stories told in flashback sequences. It drives me batty.  I can handle a few scenes but if it’s too many of them, ultimately the story will start to feel a bit disjointed.  The only other thing that bothered me was the ending.  Oy!!!  After all that…Tiffany Reisz left me with that ending??  *glares at author* Is it a cliffhanger?  No.  Is it awful?  No.  It’s not bad, I just didn’t like it.  And I wasn’t a fan of Nico, not one bit. *stares at book* *whispers I just wanted a different ending*

Some readers might struggle with their comfort level in reading The Saint because it really pushes the envelope and it does in a big way.  Mind you, I didn’t have a problem with that envelope but that’s all I’m gonna say about that because that can be argued until the cows come home.  I’m being cryptic on purpose and you’ll thank me for it later.  And you’re welcome.

But I want to focus on the things I did like.  I want to focus on everything that made this book fantastic. *wink* The writing is exceptional as I knew it would be.  I loved being in the past vs. the present because even though some of the information isn’t new, it’s detailed and I loved the young Eleanor.  She’s just as funny as present day Eleanor.  We are privy to the many conversations that Eleanor (a.k.a. Nora) had with Soren and those conversations are funny, tender and rather provocative, after all it is erotic fiction.

“She should submit to him in love and without fear, giving her body to him like a holy offering and making their bed an altar.”

One of my favorite bits about this book and her previous books are the many discussions about theology.  There’s nothing like reading about all the flaws in Catholicism and know there’s not any sarcasm as I say that or write it.  I found it to be completely fascinating.

Now I’m left waiting for The King.  And if you are familiar with this series, Kingsley is awesome.  Twisted but nevertheless…awesome.

4stars

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Note: This series is recommended for adult readers 18+. This series may not be for all readers.  

Reading Order:

The Red Years Quartet (The adventures of Nora Sutherlin, Dominant and erotica writer)

  • 1-The Siren
  • 2-The Angel
  • 3-The Prince
  • 4-The Mistress

The White Years Quartet (The adventures of Eleanor Schreiber, submissive)

  • 5-The Saint
  • 6-The King
  • 7-The Virgin
  • 8-The Queen

LoveCristina

Stupid Girl by Cindy Miles

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From Goodreads: Only fools fall in love… After her senior year of high school leaves behind nothing but heartache, Olivia Beaumont is sure of this: She’s no stupid girl. She sets out for Winston College, promising herself that she will remain focused on her first and only love – astronomy. But all it takes is cocky sophomore Brax Jenkins and an accidental collision with a football, to throw her entire year off course. A quick-tempered Southie who escaped the inner city streets of Boston to pitch for Winston, Brax is known to play way more fields than just the baseball diamond. So, when his name is drawn to take part in his fraternity’s hazing dare, Brax eagerly accepts the mission to take Olivia’s virginity. But he doesn’t plan on falling hard for the sweet and sassy Texas girl who sees right through his bad-boy persona. As Olivia and Brax battle their feelings for each other, echoes of the past year begin to surface. A boy who once turned Olivia’s whole world upside down reappears, and “harmless” pranks wreak havoc. Pretty soon the aspiring astronomer is on the verge of revealing her most difficult, heartbreaking secret. All the while, Brax must wrestle with the irrevocable dare, and Olivia struggles against all logic as she does the one thing only a stupid girl would do: fall in love.

Review…

I should’ve taken the title as a hint.

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Stupid Girl screames cliché. Cliché plot! Cliché main character! Cliché love interest! CLICHÉ CLICHÉ CLICHÉ! And I’m angry (and a little sad) for thinking that it would end differently. That, surprisingly, I would end up loving it. But no, no, no, It made me lose more faith in NA genre.

Olivia just moved to Winston College to study Astronomy and also, to work. She has no plans on making friends, especially on having a romantic relationship with anyone. She’s just happy that nobody knows her and her past, that the whispers and pity stares are gone. She’s determined  to be anonymous and to just focus on her studies but then it all changes when she runs (literally) into Brax. Brax is… jeez, we all know he’s type already. To be easy, let’s just say he’s a Travis Maddox clone. How ‘bout that? Oh wait, how about those who haven’t read BD . Well, Lucky youuuu! No, seriously. I’m genuinely happy for you. But to be fair to you guys, this is Brax Jenkins:

“That’s Braxton Jenkins, my darling. Sophomore. Kappa Phi brother. Winston’s big dog starting pitcher. Total man slut.” Tessa shook her head. “Bad ass, and not in a good way. He’s dangerous. Trouble with a big f*cking T. If you’ve got any sense at all, you’ll stay far away from him”

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Ooooohh. Now tell me this character isn’t cliché at all. But, let’s get past that. Maybe I’ll be engaged to the story.. Maybe the plot will be different. But you know what? I was 1 chapter in and I already want to rant. Look at this (or listen, or read): When Brax accidentally collided (or I think he threw something then it hit the girl, whatever) with Olivia, he KISSED her.

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THEY DON’T KNOW EACH OTHER AND HE KISSED HER. And this is what Liv thought:

“He’d kissed me. And for a moment, I’d let him. What was wrong with me?”

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Well, I’d like to know the answer myself. LOOK AT YOUR LIFE OLIVIA. LOOK AT YOUR CHOICES. That’s sexual assault, you know. HE’S A STRANGER. Is this normal now? Kissing a random stranger? OKAY. Let’s give the guy a chance. Maybe he really needs to kiss a stranger. Maybe he’s gonna die or something and a kiss will save him. I mean, it can happen right? Well, here is his reasoning:

”Christ, I’m sorry. Was just goin’ out for a pass. I didn’t even see you there. Then,” his smile was slow and lazy as his gaze raked over my mouth, “well, I just couldn’t fuckin’ help myself.”

Anybody feel like hitting someone? I KNOW I DO. And after a few chapters..

“And I’m not fuckin’ apologizing for that kiss. It was natural hot-blooded male gut instinct.” He shrugged. “Couldn’t help it.”

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I’m usually against Fictional Character slaughtering, but I don’t know.. I feel like making an exception. So. Liv should be scared, right? Or I don’t know, be creeped out. But after that encounter, she can’t stop thinking about anything but the kiss.

“It wasn’t a big deal, not a date, and he certainly wasn’t interested in me. Not a proposal, as he’d pointed out. As Tessa had so delicately put it, I was not his type. Not at all.  So why did my lips still tingle?”

She was just like that for a whole 3 chapters. Going on and on and on.. She wont’s stop. Liv really has a potential as a character. This book started on Olivia being drugged and raped by his boyfriend (the handling with this chapter is so insensitive by the way. ICK.) And then after a year, she moves in Winston College. Where’s the character development that should’ve happen because of her tragic past? WHERE? She said that she’s all changed and that she know better now but really, this girl is acting like a 15 year old through out the book..

“When we reached the dorm entrance, Brax caught the door as a group of girls filed out. They all slid me an odd look, and one said, “Hey there, Brax,” in a husky voice, and then stared hard at me as she passed. Almost … challenging me. Daring me to interfere. Daggers, even. It was always so noticeable when girls flirted, and it looked and sounded stupid and immature. They never really knew what might lay behind good looks. Or an arresting pair of eyes. No matter how jolting of a kisser. I knew that first hand.”

And then after a few chapters..

“…just something I believe in personally. (about her purity ring) I don’t make a big deal of it, just like I don’t judge others.”

MY FAVORITE:

“I know I’m a typical, Brax. Most girls my age have casual sex like there’s no tomorrow. I’m sorry, but that’s just not me. I’m … simply not casual.”

Yep, I checked, A woman wrote this. My own species. One question: WHYYYYYYYY. Ahhhh, it’s all just so tiring. It was sooo predictable and nothing really happened that stood up. Everything feels recycled, like I’ve already read it and it’s just so maddening. If you’re really curious to what happened, here it is: I DON’T KNOW. I stopped when she ended giving up her fake virginity and she found out that Brax was lying and it was all just a dare.

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Yes guys, Brax lied. I CANNOT BELIEVE IT. UGH. What a shocker.

ANYWAY, Stupid Girl did not work for me, at all. After reading it, I feel like my whole energy was drained and I started questioning my life choices. Maybe this is for you if— Forget it, read it at your own risk! Oh and if you have some NA recommendations? That would be fab.

 

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LovePaula

 

How to Love by Katie Cotugno

17332564From Goodreads: Before: Reena Montero has loved Sawyer LeGrande for as long as she can remember: as natural as breathing, as endless as time. But he’s never seemed to notice that Reena even exists until one day, impossibly, he does. Reena and Sawyer fall in messy, complicated love. But then Sawyer disappears from their humid Florida town without a word, leaving a devastated-and pregnant-Reena behind. 

After: Almost three years have passed, and there’s a new love in Reena’s life: her daughter, Hannah. Reena’s gotten used to being without Sawyer, and she’s finally getting the hang of this strange, unexpected life. But just as swiftly and suddenly as he disappeared, Sawyer turns up again. Reena doesn’t want anything to do with him, though she’d be lying if she said Sawyer’s being back wasn’t stirring something in her. After everything that’s happened, can Reena really let herself love Sawyer LeGrande again?

Review:

This book had all the elements to turn into a new favorite. However there was something that really didn’t let it become that. That something’s name is Sawyer.

As so many others have said in their reviews of this book, if you don’t like Sawyer, you won’t like this book. Sadly, I didn’t like Sawyer.

This is really disappointing, since at first I was really connecting with this book. I really understood Reena. I really understood her, and loved her as a character at first. Suddenly Sawyer comes into the picture, and all the maturity she had acquired (because of her teenage pregnancy and being left alone to deal with it) disappears. POOF. Reena is 16 again, and making stupid decisions all over again.

I really tried to see what was so special about Sawyer. I tried to see how it was that Reena fell for him. But I couldn’t. All I saw was this manipulative and emotionally distant person. For Christ’s sake, Sawyer doesn’t even talk about his and Reena’s daughter when he sees her! He’s like: “Oh look, a baby. Well nice to see you, gotta go, bye.” He intentionally avoids the subject until he can’t anymore and then turns everything on Reena as if it were HER FAULT. And it is not.

There’s also a love triangle here, and I definitely did not root for Sawyer. I think this love triangle was about much more than just a simple “should I? shouldn’t I?” aspect, but more of an inner war of Reena’s past self with her future self. I felt like this triangle was Reena choosing to be her old, 17-year-old self (with Sawyer), or the new and mature girl she had to be to raise her daughter. She ultimately chose wrong. I am all for second chances when the person proves themselves worthy. However Sawyer did nothing of the sort. He just reappeared into Reena’s life and expected to be accepted as if he belonged there.

“The hideous thing is this: I want to forgive him. Even after everything, I do. A baby before my 17th birthday and a future as lonely as the surface of the moon and still the sight of him feels like a homecoming, like a song I used to know but somehow forgot.”

What I did like, however, was the familial dynamics. I liked seeing Reena’s interactions with her daughter, Hannah. I liked to see Reena actually acting as a good parent to Hannah. I also loved seeing Reena’s parents being supportive (even if they were conflicted) towards Reena. I loved that her parents weren’t afraid to tell the truth to her. I also loved the writing. The story was presented in then and now moments, and I loved that I could see the contrast between what was happening.

Overall, while this book has a great premise and wonderful writing, the fact that I could not connect with any of the main characters deterred my love for it. As I kept reading, Sawyer slowly kept sucking my enjoyment for what would have been an awesome book.

2stars

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LoveMarianne

 

Sinner (The Wolves of Mercy Falls #3.5) by Maggie Stiefvater

18406862 From Goodreads:  A standalone companion book to the internationally bestselling Shiver Trilogy.

Sinner follows Cole St. Clair, a pivotal character from the #1 New York Times bestselling Shiver Trilogy. Everybody thinks they know Cole’s story. Stardom. Addiction. Downfall. Disappearance. But only a few people know Cole’s darkest secret — his ability to shift into a wolf. One of these people is Isabel. At one point, they may have even loved each other. But that feels like a lifetime ago. Now Cole is back. Back in the spotlight. Back in the danger zone. Back in Isabel’s life. Can this sinner be saved?

 

Review:

I’ve been waiting on this book for soooooo long, I didn’t think it was ever going to come out!!! Sinner is the stand alone companion book to Maggie Stiefvater’s Shiver trilogy (also known as The Wolves of Mercy Falls series). You really should read the trilogy first, though. This trilogy is one of my favorite series, and Maggie Stiefvater is one of my favorite authors (her Raven Boys series is another fave), so I was extremely excited for Sinner! I’m going to try to rein in my fangirling for this review, and also try to be vague so as not to spoil anything for fans of this series!

Sinner picks up after the events in Forever, the last book in the series. However, unlike the other books in the series, Grace Brisbane and Sam Roth are not the focus of Sinner. Instead, Sinner is about Cole St. Clair and Isabel Culpeper, the secondary characters from the trilogy that I thought constantly stole the show. Cole – the boy we hated to love and Isabel – the girl we loved to hate.

“I am a werewolf in L.A.”

After the events in Forever, her parents separated, and so Isabel moved from Minnesota to Los Angeles with her mom. They are living with Isabel’s divorced aunt and cousin in what Isabel refers to as the “House of Dismay and Ruin.” Still grieving the death of her brother and now the death of her parent’s marriage, Isabel is trying to move on and build a new life by pursuing a career in medicine. She’s harsh, bitter, and blunt to hide her vulnerability. The last thing she needs or expects is Cole St. Clair in her life again.

“I came back for you, Isabel.”

Cole St. Clair shows up in Los Angeles, the city that played a part of his downfall (prior to becoming a wolf), to pursue/restart his music career. But really, he’s there for Isabel. He’s on a path of redemption, and he wants Isabel in his life. He needs her. They have a complicated love – they will either bring each other up or tear each other down.

“There was always room for more monsters in L.A.”

This installment focuses more on romance than the paranormal aspect featured in the trilogy. While Cole is still a wolf, the wolf issue isn’t as prominent as the romance. I still enjoyed and loved it, though. It’s a clever, lovely, snarky, funny, and sweet story. I just can not explain how much I adored this book!! Love Cole and Isabel so much!! Fans of the series shouldn’t be disappointed, I think this book is better than the hype!! It’s awesome, and I highly recommend it!!

5stars

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LoveTricia

On the Edge (The Edge, 1-4) by Ilona Andrews

on the edgeFrom goodreads: Rose Drayton lives on the Edge, between the world of the Broken (where people drive cars, shop at Wal-Mart, and magic is a fairy tale) and the Weird (where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny). Only Edgers like Rose can easily travel from one world to the next, but they never truly belong in either.

Rose thought if she practiced her magic, she could build a better life for herself. But things didn’t turn out how she planned, and now she works a minimum wage, off the books job in the Broken just to survive. Then Declan Camarine, a blueblood noble straight out of the deepest part of the Weird, comes into her life, determined to have her (and her power).

But when a terrible danger invades the Edge from the Weird, a flood of creatures hungry for magic, Declan and Rose must work together to destroy them—or they’ll devour the Edge and everyone in it.

Review…

A quickie review.

“Yes, I’m too mad to punish you right now. We’ll talk about it when we get home. Go brush your teeth, comb your hair, put on dry clothes, and get the guns. We’re going to Wal-Mart.”

Having become a recent fan of Ilona Andrews, how could I not read The Edge series??

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Let me just say that books 1 through 4 are completely addictive and it was light on the action if I’m comparing it to the Kate Daniels series and it wasn’t a bad thing, just different from what I normally like.  I also had a hard time figuring out how to label it because it’s not 100% UF but it’s not quite PNR and I’m not sure that it’s Fantasy either.  I guess you could say it’s a mix of UF with a sprinkling of PNR, so you can imagine how torn I was as to which shelf to add it to on goodreads.  I know, book-nerd problems. *shrugs*

“Why couldn’t she have gotten another Edger or some dimwit from the Broken for a passenger? No, she got Lord Leather Pants here.”

Anyway, labels aren’t important.  What’s important is that this series is absolutely fabulous even though at times the stories moved a bit fast for me.  The stories weren’t overly complex but if you skip a line or two, you, as the reader will be lost because the world building is complex and that’s what I loved most about Ilona Andrew’s books.  I was completely fascinated by the world caught between the Weird and the Broken and yes, that would be the Edge. See how that connects to the title?? *waggles brows*

“If the sky could dream, it would dream of dragons.”

The writing, is fabulous and very clever which isn’t shocking.  There were a few times when I did the whole giggle-snort thing.  Luckily, I wasn’t in public or anything because I hate when people stare.  Anyway, there wasn’t a character I didn’t like and there wasn’t a creepy creature that didn’t fail to give me the heebie-jeebies.

“We Draytons are many things: pirates, witches, rogues…but nobody ever accused us of being ungrateful. A family has to have standards. Even in the Edge.”

All four books felt like a modern fairytale and I absolutely fell in love with Jack and George. Actually, I fell in love with the entire series.  Clearly, I’m all over the place but if you like UF or PNR then indulge yourself with everything that’s The Edge. *wink*

What can I say…I looooooooooove this series!

4stars addtogoodreads buy from amazon

Reading Order:

 

LoveCristina

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

15283043From Goodreads: Seventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.

So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she’s beginning to enjoy his company.

She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about.

Review:

Rich Guy and Poor Girl. Sounds like your typical romance novel, doesn’t it? And yet Kasie West makes it so different.

This was such a cute and fluffy book! It’s definitely a very quick read and one that’ll definitely get you out of a reading slump.

What makes this book different from others with the same premise is the wonderful characters. Each character in this book is a breath of fresh air. Caymen, with her dry humour and personality is totally relatable. I’m not rich, and I definitely know what it’s like living with your single mother and getting by. Caymen doesn’t let this affect her personality. She’s still an independent and headstrong girl.

“So Caymen…”
“So, Xander…”
“Like the islands.”
“What?”
“Your name. Caymen. Like the Cayman Islands. Is that your mom’s favourite place to visit or something?”
“No, it’s her third favourite place. I have an older brother named Paris and an older sister named Sydney.”
“Wow.” He opens the bag, takes out a muffin, and hands it to me. The top glistens with sprinkled sugar. “Really?”
I gently unwrap it. “No.”

I really loved Xander as a love interest! He was so understanding. Yeah, he was rich, but that didn’t make him snobby at all. He took Caymen’s humour and delivered it right back to her. Can I get a Xander? I need someone to have sarcastic and witty conversations with!

The reason Xander & Caymen had such an adorable romance was because they both ignored their backgrounds and decided to know each other personally. Yes, Caymen had her doubts at first (because of his money), but Xander had no qualms about proving her wrong whenever he could. He showed her that he liked her for who she was!

I also really liked Caymen’s relationship with her mother because it seemed very genuine. They were great friends and yet their relationship developed and grew throughout the book. Caymen also had a great friendship with Skye, her eccentric best friend.

My only complaint about this book is the fact that it seemed a little bit rushed at the end. I would’ve enjoyed a more fleshed-out ending.

Overall, a great, fluffy, contemporary romance. It’ll leave you giddy and happy and wanting to devour anything else Kasie West writes.

“This is me facing failure. This is me putting everything on the line even though I know I might lose. And I’m terrified. But like you said, anything worth having is worth the risk.”

If you liked my review, would you mind marking it as “helpful” on Amazon? :)

4halfstars

addtogoodreads

LoveMarianne

How Do You Rate Your Books?

My last review (Neverland by Anna Katmore) got me thinking about ratings and reviews of books, so I decided to share my thoughts. Also, I’d especially love to hear your thoughts on this subject – as a reader, reviewer, blogger, and/or non-blogger. I feel bad, but I don’t review every book that I read. I don’t have enough time to review EVERY book. Plus sometimes, I’m not sure how to put into words (without spoilers) how I feel about certain books. I try to always rate the books I read, though. I use Goodreads.com mostly for my ratings and reviews of books, occasionally Amazon.com or BN.com (Barnes & Noble), and sometimes Smashwords.com or Booksamillion.com.

shrug

What websites do you typically use for your reviews/ratings of books?

Do you rate and/or review EVERY book that you read? What about books that you don’t finish? What about books that you don’t like? I haven’t been rating or reviewing books that I don’t finish. It’s rare that I don’t finish a book, but it has happened. I don’t rate or review them because sometimes I wonder if it’s just me –maybe I’m just not in the mood for this particular book, and so maybe I’ll try it again later. I rate books whether or not I like them; however, looking over my Goodreads stats – I tend to rate high. My average is 3 or 4 stars for books. My list of favorite and go-to authors is large and keeps growing, so I rarely read out of that comfort zone. I love those authors, so I usually (not always, though) love all their books. I think my stats for reading out of my comfort zone (new to me authors), is about 50/50 – for every new book I find that I love, there’s one that I don’t!

hmmm

What are some things that make a book worth 4 or 5 stars to you? When do you give 2 or less stars? For me, if I: absolutely LOVE a book, find it incredibly entertaining, would read it again (and again), would recommend it to friends, start fangirling over it, etc, etc, etc – it’s 4 or 5 stars. If a book can’t hold my interest, falls flat, lacks a plot, etc, etc, etc – it’s 2 stars or less. If it falls somewhere in between – I liked it, it was entertaining, but probably won’t read it again – then 3 stars. I’m sure there’s more criteria, but basically, I base my ratings on how the book makes me feel and how it keeps my attention. I’m not picky on grammatical errors unless the book is full of them and becomes a distraction.

anotherhmmm

I read to be entertained!!

Do you find that your reviews/ratings follow the norm? Do you read reviews/ratings before purchasing or reading a book? This is what I’m really curious about. I thought I usually follow the norm, and I don’t usually read reviews before buying/reading a book unless it’s completely new to me. For instance, Neverland by Anna Katmore was a new-to-me book and author. I was looking for something different to read on my Kindle. I came across this book, and it sounded very interesting. Since I’ve never read anything by this author, I decided to read the reviews and check out the average rating. The reviews were highly favorable on both Goodreads and Amazon. The average rating on Goodreads is 4.19 stars and 4.50 stars on Amazon. I liked those stats, so I purchased the book for 99 cents. Now, I realize that no two people read the same book the same way – everybody has different opinions and feelings and that’s great. I know that my friends and I aren’t going to love or hate the same books – that’s what makes our discussions so interesting!! However, because my rating of this particular book was so different than the average ratings, I’m wondering if there’s something wrong with me, LOL!! I thought I followed the norm with my ratings, but I didn’t with this book. I’m okay with not following the norm, it just made me think about ratings and reviews, and I thought it would be an interesting blog subject. I’d love to hear your thoughts!!

 

LoveTricia