Posts Categorized: Reviews

Feb 13

Review * #famous by Jilly Gagnon

Reviews 1 ★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * #famous by Jilly Gagnon#famous by Jilly Gagnon
Published by Katherine Tegan Books on February 14, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 384
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Add to: Goodreads
four-stars
In this modern-day love story, Girl likes Boy, Girl takes photo of Boy and posts it online, Boy becomes accidentally insta-famous. And what starts out as an innocent joke spirals into a whirlwind adventure that could change both their lives—and their hearts—forever. But are fame and love worth the price?

Told in alternating points of view, #famous captures the out-of-control thrill ride of falling for someone in front of everyone.

What I Thought…

• I read this in one sitting. It was so hard to put down!

• Rachel sneaks a picture of her crush and it ends of going viral. I feel like something similarish happened in real life, but maybe not? It goes viral in a positive way for Kyle, but not so much for Rachel.

• Obviously social media plays a large roll in the book and unfortunately people can be cruel online, especially to people they don’t know. It was really hard to read some the flits that Rachel got from these random people. It broke my heart that she had to read these things and then deal with it. For the most part I liked how it was handled in the book.

• Kyle was adorable but a little clueless, but since I think in general teenage boys can be clueless it didn’t seem out of the normal. For a good part of the book he didn’t see the other side of what happened for Rachel, which was frustrating at times. But he definitely made up for it in the end.

• The whole viral thing gets so big that Kyle goes on the Laura talk show and ends up getting Rachel involved. I hated how this played out for Rachel. View Spoiler »

• Rachel and Kyle were super cute together as they tried to navigate what is going on in their life and deal with their attraction to each other.

• Kyle’s best friend Ollie was absolutely awesome. Rachel’s best friend was less awesome. She did something in the book that made me super angry for Rachel, but also a lot of the time Rachel seemed like a better friend to her than she was to Rachel.

• Mean Girl Alert! There were two specific mean girls in the book and one of them was super vicious the other lashed out over what was happening and how it affected her. Either way they were mean and terrible to Rachel. The one situation was better handled (she did NOT come out the winner) but I did like how both were handled.

• My one complaint is I felt like #famous just kind of stopped. I was a little taken aback that there wasn’t another page. With that said though I liked how everything worked out so no other complaints.

Overall #famous was a fast paced, enjoyable read with a super adorable couple in it.

Kimberly


Feb 06

Review * My (Not So) Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella

Reviews 1 ★★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * My (Not So) Perfect Life by Sophie KinsellaMy Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella
Published by Bantam on February 7, 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary
Pages: 400
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Add to: Goodreads
five-stars
Katie Brenner has the perfect life: a flat in London, a glamorous job, and a super-cool Instagram feed.

Ok, so the real truth is that she rents a tiny room with no space for a wardrobe, has a hideous commute to a lowly admin job, and the life she shares on Instagram isn’t really hers.

But one day her dreams are bound to come true, aren’t they?

Until her not-so perfect life comes crashing down when her mega-successful boss Demeter gives her the sack. All Katie’s hopes are shattered. She has to move home to Somerset, where she helps her dad with his new glamping business.

Then Demeter and her family book in for a holiday, and Katie sees her chance. But should she get revenge on the woman who ruined her dreams? Or try to get her job back? Does Demeter – the woman with everything – have such an idyllic life herself? Maybe they have more in common than it seems.

And what’s wrong with not-so-perfect, anyway?

What I Thought…

• Sophie Kinsella has long since been one of my favorite authors, and while her Shopaholic series dwindled for me some, I can’t help but pick up her books when I need something light and fun. My Not So Perfect Life fit that spot for me perfectly.

• MNSPL reminded me a lot of Can You Keep a Secret? in the best possible way. Things just happen to Katie and you can’t help but laugh and what she is going through. It was a bit ridiculous at times, but this is precisely the kind of book I needed in my life right now.

• It was so easy to identify with Katie. I completely understand the “fake” Instagram life she had and how you keep telling everyone how AMAZING and FANTASTIC your life is, even if it’s not. No one wants to show the bad parts. I’ve been there myself so I totally get it. And it’s so easy to make things look fabulous on the internet even when it’s not.

• What I liked best about MNSPL is that it really showcases that you should never judge anyone until you walk in their shoes. You don’t know where they’ve gone or what they’ve done. Some people just seem to have it all together and are seemingly perfect, but you don’t know what happens when you’re not around.

• Not a lot is happening at the beginning but around the middle of the book all these things start happening. Demeter (boss from hell) reappears in Katie’s life so does Alex (her crush) and there are other things that I don’t want to go in to because of spoilers, but I promise, you will enjoy the journey!

Overall if you’re looking for something light and fun this book is definitely for you!

Kimberly


Jan 30

Review * By Your Side by Kasie West

Reviews 2 ★★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * By Your Side by Kasie WestBy Your Side by Kasie West
Published by HarperTeen on January 31, 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Pages: 352
Format: eBook
Source: Edelweiss
Add to: Goodreads
five-stars
When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn’t think things could get any worse. But that’s before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her. Autumn doesn’t know much about Dax except that he’s trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he’s not exactly the ideal person to be stuck with. Still, she just keeps reminding herself that it is only a matter of time before Jeff, her almost-boyfriend, realizes he left her in the library and comes to rescue her.

Only he doesn’t come. No one does.

Instead it becomes clear that Autumn is going to have to spend the next couple of days living off vending-machine food and making conversation with a boy who clearly wants nothing to do with her. Except there is more to Dax than meets the eye. As he and Autumn first grudgingly, and then not so grudgingly, open up to each other, Autumn is struck by their surprising connection. But can their feelings for each other survive once the weekend is over and Autumn’s old life, and old love interest, threaten to pull her from Dax’s side?

What I Thought…

• When was the last time Kasie West disappointed me? Never!

• How awesome would it be to be stuck in a library? I don’t care how unrealistic the logistics were, it would be fun!

• I was pleasantly surprised that By Your Side did not take place entirely in the library. This made the book so much better because we get to see what happens after the library.

• So many feels!

• Autumn has anxiety and I appreciated how well she was written and the message that came across with it. Autumn was still a strong character, but it also showed how she dealt with it (or in some cases didn’t deal with it).

• Dax was smooth and easy despite his upbringing. He had a lot going on even though he wasn’t given a lot to start with.

• There is a little more to the story than just the library, which I appreciate. I won’t go in to details, but I will say that I didn’t like all of Autumns friends. The situation regarding how she got left at the library made me angry, and I don’t feel that they were true friends. Autumn explained som

Overall another great contemporary from Kasie West. You won’t be disappointed!

Kimberly


Jan 23

Review * Accidentally on Purpose by Jill Shalvis

Reviews 0 ★★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * Accidentally on Purpose by Jill ShalvisAccidentally on Purpose by Jill Shalvis
Series: Heartbreaker Bay #3
Published by Avon on January 24, 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 384
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Add to: Goodreads
five-stars
There’s no such thing as a little in love…

Elle Wheaten’s priorities: friends, career, and kick-ass shoes. Then there’s the muscular wall of stubbornness that’s security expert Archer Hunt—who comes before everything else. No point in telling Mr. “Feels-Free Zone” that, though. Elle will just see other men until she gets over Archer . . . which should only take a lifetime . . .

There’s no such thing as a little in lust…

Archer’s wanted the best for Elle ever since he sacrificed his law-enforcement career to save her. But now that she’s earned happiness and success, Archer just wants Elle 24/7. Their chemistry could start the next San Francisco Earthquake, and Archer doesn’t want to be responsible for the damage. The alternative? Watch her go out with guys who aren’t him . . .

There is such a thing as…

As far as Archer’s concerned, nobody is good enough for Elle. But when he sets out to prove it by sabotaging her dates, she gets mad—and things get hot as hell. Now Archer has a new mission: prove to Elle that her perfect man has been here all along…

What I Thought…

• The tension between Elle and Archer ran high throughout the entire story. I loved how their backstory unfolded, it was just woven into the story, a little bit here, a little bit there until finally you knew what happened. To me that felt like such a natural way for the reader to find out the details, as they were remembering it, rather than just being told all the things.

• Sometimes Archer drove me crazy, but in the end he won me over. I get his need to want to protect Elle, but c’mon! That is generally not liked by anyone so he should not have been surprised to see that blow up in his face (more than once lol).

• Elle also had a fierce need to be independent. She’s worked hard to be that way, but sometimes you have to learn to accept help and Elle had a hard time with that.

• While Elle and Archer have a past, it’s a bit different from those typically featured in contemporary romances. It was nice to see what happened, how it shaped them, and how they came back together in the present.

• As always I enjoyed getting to know more of the characters, including Spence who I found adorable and hilarious and I can’t wait for him to get his own book. I really want him to get his own HEA. He needs it. I also enjoyed the reappearance of characters I’ve already met, and seeing what they’re up to.

• I wish that there was a bit more of Elle’s sister, but I also feel like she should get her own book (maybe with Spence???) so I’m ok with there not being more there if there is more of her in the future.

Overall another great addition to the Heartbreak Bay Series and one I would highly recommend!

Kimberly


Jan 16

Review * This Is Our Story by Ashley Elston

Reviews 1 ★★★★★

Review * This Is Our Story by Ashley ElstonThis Is Our Story by Ashley Elston
Published by Disney Hyperion on November 15, 2016
Genres: Mystery, Young Adult
Pages: 320
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Add to: Goodreads
five-stars
Five went in. Four came out.

No one knows what happened that morning at River Point. Five boys went hunting. Four came back. The boys won’t say who fired the shot that killed their friend; the evidence shows it could have been any one of them.

Kate Marino’s senior year internship at the district attorney’s office isn’t exactly glamorous—more like an excuse to leave school early that looks good on college applications. Then the DA hands her boss, Mr. Stone, the biggest case her small town of Belle Terre has ever seen. The River Point Boys are all anyone can talk about. Despite their damning toxicology reports the morning of the accident, the DA wants the boys’ case swept under the rug. He owes his political office to their powerful families.

Kate won’t let that happen. Digging up secrets without revealing her own is a dangerous line to walk; Kate has her own reasons for seeking justice for Grant. As investigates with Stone, the aging prosecutor relying on Kate to see and hear what he cannot, she realizes that nothing about the case—or the boys—is what it seems. Grant wasn’t who she thought he was, and neither is Stone’s prime suspect. As Kate gets dangerously close to the truth, it becomes clear that the early morning accident might not have been an accident at all—and if Kate doesn’t uncover the true killer, more than one life could be on the line…including her own.

What I Thought…

• I could not put down This Is Our Story. It had me from the get go and wouldn’t let go of it’s hold on me.

• I love the way the story was told. There were chapter’s from Kate’s POV and also interludes from the killer’s POV, only we don’t know who it is.

• Nothing is as it seems. There are five boys in the group, one of them is killed and the other four agree to this pact to “protect” themselves. It’s absolutely crazy, but I could totally see this being a real story.

• Kate was pretty awesome. I loved her job in the courthouse and that she was fiercer than I thought she would be.

• There were quite a few plots twists. Some I saw coming, some I didn’t. It was really hard to know what was true and what was a lie.

• Belle Terre is a small town and I loved the mix of small town politics combined with rich people politics. It added another delicious element to the story.

• I was pleasantly surprised that there was a little romance in Belle Terre. I picked up This Is Our Story because of how intriguing the mystery was, and given that half the characters are suspects to a murder I just assumed no romance.

• Kate’s BFF Reagan was the kind of best friend everyone should have in high school. She calls it like it is, but is also supportive.

Overall you should read This Is Our Story. Now. Seriously. The mystery has so many twists and turns – you won’t regret it.

Kimberly


Jan 11

Review * The Sun Is Also a Star

Reviews 2 ★★★★★

Review * The Sun Is Also a StarThe Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
Published by Delacorte Books for Young Readers on November 1, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Pages: 348
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Add to: Goodreads
five-stars
Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

What I Thought…

• OMG! THIS BOOK! So many feels!

• I’m honestly not even sure where to begin. I feel like this book turned my brain into complete mush and I am having a hard time having coherent thoughts. There is just so much to talk about and it’s all amazing.

• Natasha and Daniel were amazing. Natasha is an illegal Jamaican immigrant and while Daniel was born in America, his parents were not. They were modeled after the author’s own relationship which is all kinds of awesome. I loved learning a little bits of information about the Jamaican and Korean cultures, and how they are the same/different here in America. Their families came here for different reasons in different manners and that really shaped the lives of their children.

• At first I wasn’t too sure about the style it was written in. Natasha and Daniel are the two main characters but throughout The Sun Is Also a Star there are other POV’s and little tidbits of information relevant to the story woven through the story. These parts really came to grow on me, especially the informational ones. We learn about the theory behind eyes, and how it came to be that African-American hair care stores tended to be owned by Koreans. It was all so fascinating!

• There is a lot of discussion in The Sun Is Also a Star over destiny/fate and science. I know that I fall somewhere in the middle of both and I loved that Natasha was full of the science of things and Daniel was full of “meant to be”. It was a good mix and I enjoyed how they shifted a little bit in how they feel about things.

• I think my favorite part of the story was how everything was woven in and you see how their chance meeting affected others lives and how those lives affected them. The intertwining was so smooth and really hits home how one small thing can make a difference in the life of someone else.

• Both Natasha and Daniel have someone in their family who is less than awesome. For me, Daniel’s brother was THE WORST. Ugh.

• I also liked how Yoon gave us a little snippet of the futures of not just Natasha and Daniel but also some of the other lives in the story. I really liked the ending, even though I wanted to punch a certain person in the face for his actions because things could have turned out differently, but then again, I think that ending would have been too cheesy for me and this one was better.

Overall if you haven’t read The Sun Is Also a Star yet run to the bookstore pick it up and read it now. It was AMAZING!

Kimberly


Dec 12

Review * The Last Star by Rick Yancey

Reviews 1 ★★

Review * The Last Star by Rick YanceyThe Last Star by Rick Yancey
Narrated by Ben Yannette, Phoebe Strole
Series: The 5th Wave #3
Published by Putnam Juvenile on May 24, 2016
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Time: 9 Hours 17 Minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Add to: Goodreads
two-stars
The enemy is Other. The enemy is us.

They’re down here, they’re up there, they’re nowhere. They want the Earth, they want us to have it. They came to wipe us out, they came to save us.

But beneath these riddles lies one truth: Cassie has been betrayed. So has Ringer. Zombie. Nugget. And all 7.5 billion people who used to live on our planet. Betrayed first by the Others, and now by ourselves.

In these last days, Earth’s remaining survivors will need to decide what’s more important: saving themselves…or saving what makes us human.

What I Thought…

UGH!!!!!! I enjoyed both The Fifth Wave and The Infinite Sea but this…. UGH!!!

“I looked into his chocolate fondue fountain eyes.” – need I say more?

Disappointed.

View Spoiler »

And really????

View Spoiler »

I listened to the audio and tuned in and out, I’m sure I missed things but it wasn’t as riveting as the previous books and in the end I just wanted it to be over.
I’m disappointed that the twist that I thought was coming didn’t actually come because that would have made more sense.

View Spoiler »

Also:

View Spoiler »

Overall… don’t bother.

Kimberly


Aug 15

Review * Game On by Michelle Smith

Reviews 3 ★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * Game On by Michelle SmithGame On by Michelle Smith
Series: Lewis Creek #2
Published by Bloomsbury Spark on August 16, 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 328
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Add to: Goodreads
four-stars
As king of baseball in the small town of Lewis Creek, Eric Perry can have any girl he wants and win every game he plays. But when a fight lands him in jail, he’s only got one more strike before his baseball career is over for good. His only chance for redemption? The girl next door, Bri Johnson.

Bri hasn’t talked to Eric in months—for starters, she’s been too busy dealing with her jerk of an ex-boyfriend, not to mention the fact that Eric’s been preoccupied trying to drink every keg in the country dry. But when he needs a way to stay on the team, she proposes a plan: if he helps her out with community service, he can stay on the team. At first it’s a nightmare—Eric and Bri stopped being friends years ago, surely that was for a good reason, right? But as volunteering turns to bonding over old memories of first kisses under the stars, they start to have trouble remembering what pushed them apart.

In a town as small as Lewis Creek, nothing stays secret for long and their friendship and romance might mean bad news. But in this final, tumultuous spring before graduation, Eric and Bri are about to realize that nobody’s perfect alone, but they might just be perfect together.

What I Thought…

• Game on was one of my most anticipated books for awhile. I loved Play On and was so excited to see that there was going to be another book set in Lewis Creek. I flew through Game On and have no regrets of staying up late to finish it.

• I’m a huge fan of boy/girl next door books and this one is even better because they were friends when they were kids and just kind of grew apart. I love that they were able to fall back in to that friendship.

• At the beginning Bri is dating this asshole Matt. He is controlling and Bri is finally starting to see that she needs to get out, but has a hard time with it. While it was painful to read at times, it was realistic… it’s easy to get stuck in these relationships and have a hard time getting out. View Spoiler »

• Eric is quite the trouble maker. It annoyed me how much got covered up in the beginning, but we all know that in some places student athletes get things covered up, and I’ve heard of a lot worse. I really like that Eric finally started to understand that it was a bit of self fulfilling prophecy and that he needed to change.

• Bri has a rough family situation and my heart just broke for her. Her mom left when she was a kid and her dad is a truck driver so she is alone a lot. It’s a good thing that Eric has an awesome family and they are right next door.

• I think one of the best things about Game On was that there were adults, and adults that were not idiots and just there because the author decided to throw an adult in. They played a good roll in the story and I loved Eric’s parents. Honestly, I loved his whole family, they are the kind of family that you can’t help but love in all their craziness.

• There needed to be more kissing. Definitely not enough kissing.

• I also wish that the plot line with Bri’s ex Matt would have not overshadowed Bri and Eric’s developing relationship. I felt that it dragged on a bit and there were enough other things going on for Bri and Eric to deal with.

Overall I loved returning back to Lewis Creek and Game On is a perfect summer read!

Kimberly


Jul 30

Review * To Have and to Hold by Lauren Layne

Reviews 0 ★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * To Have and to Hold by Lauren LayneTo Have and to Hold by Lauren Layne
Series: The Wedding Belles #1
Published by Pocket Books on July 26, 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 384
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Add to: Goodreads
four-stars
Discovering her fiance is an international con man just moments before they exchange vows devastates celebrity wedding planner Brooke Baldwin's business—and breaks her heart. Now a pariah in Los Angeles, she seeks a fresh start in New York City and thinks she’s found it with her first bridal client, a sweet—if slightly spoiled—hotel heiress. Then she meets the uptight businessman who’s holding the purse strings.

Seth Tyler wishes he could write a blank check and be done with his sister Maya's fancy-pants wedding. Unfortunately, micromanaging the event is his only chance at proving Maya’s fiance is a liar. Standing directly in his way is the stunning blonde wedding planner whose practiced smiles and sassy comebacks both irritate and arouse him. He needs Brooke’s help. But can he persuade a wedding planner on a comeback mission to unplan a wedding? And more importantly, how will he convince her that the wedding she should be planning... is theirs?

What I Thought…

Seth and Brooke’s story blew me away! I read it in one day, and would have read it in one sitting if it wasn’t for the fact that I had an appointment. I loved their instant attraction, and unwillingness to follow through on it…. at first. Their banter back and forth and unease with the situation could be felt through the pages. Their relationship wasn’t just built on lust and they had some fairly big arguments (and good ones too).

I also loved the how the whole situation with Seth’s sister Maya getting married. It’s tough to see someone you love have a whirlwind romance and marriage and while Seth did not handle things well, he handled it realistically. I enjoyed the roll that Seth’s best friend Grant played and his no b.s. way of dealing with Seth’s boneheaded moves.

Overall I loved the other two wedding planners, Heather and Alexis (especially Alexis – she’s just got to be with the Brit!) and I can’t wait to read their stories.

Kimberly


Jul 21

Review * Cream of the Crop by Alice Clayton

Reviews 2 ★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review * Cream of the Crop by Alice ClaytonCream of the Crop by Alice Clayton
Series: Hudson Valley #2
Published by Simon & Schuster on July 12, 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Add to: Goodreads
four-stars
Manhattan’s It Girl, Natalie Grayson, has it all: she’s a hot exec at a leading advertising firm, known industry-wide for her challenging and edgy campaigns. She’s got a large circle of friends, a family that loves her dearly, and her dance card is always full with handsome eligible bachelors. What else could a modern gal-about-town wish for? The answer, of course, is...cheese.

Natalie’s favorite part of each week is spending Saturday morning at the Union Square Farmer’s Market, where she indulges her love of all things triple cream. Her favorite booth also indulges her love of all things handsome. Oscar Mendoza, owner of the Bailey Falls Creamery and purveyor of the finest artisanal cheeses the Hudson Valley has to offer, is tall, dark, mysterious, and a bit oblivious. Or so she thinks. But that doesn’t stop Natalie from fantasizing about the size of his, ahem, milk can.

Romance is churning, passion is burning, and something incredible is rising to the top. Could it be...love?

What I Thought…

• I really enjoyed Natalie. It’s not often that you find a truly plus sized girl in a contemporary romance but she’s here and she’s likeable. My only issue with Natalie is that given her back story I didn’t see the connection between how she got from there to having confidence in herself and her body and I wish those connections would have been made.

• Oscar was equally as awesome. He is a farmer and a cheesemaker and while I NEVER want to see cheese being made, I do love me some cheese. He was a little awkward at times, but that just made him more adorable.

• Cream of the Crop is not Clayton’s most hilarious book (that honor still goes to Wallbanger), it is still funny and there are quite a few ridiculous moments to get your laughs in. Don’t worry, there are plenty of steaming moments too.

• I love a good small town and Baily Falls does not disappoint. I also loved that it provided the tension between Oscar in Bailey Falls and Natalie who resides in NYC. They are such contrasting places and I enjoyed their fish out of water experiences.

• Natalie and Oscar are cute together but other than their great physical relationship and love of cheese there didn’t seem to be much for them to go on, but by the end you see there love and you know all will be well.

Overall Cream of the Crop is another fun read from Alice Clayton!

Kimberly