Tag Archives: book review

lilacskully

Review: Lilac Skully and the Haunted House by Amy Cesari

First of all, how gorgeous is that cover?

When Amy reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in reviewing Lilac Skully and the Haunted House, I already had a pretty full plate. I’d just posted my Haunting October list, and I had a backlog of 10-12 book reviews on deck. (I’m still learning how to not overextend myself!) But the cover called to me.

I know, I know – don’t judge a book by its cover. I thoroughly disagree with this. A bad cover is not going to make me want to read your book, but a good cover will. But anyway, the book.

Lilac Skully and the Haunted House is so much fun, guys. It’s the kind of book that almost makes me wish I had a kid to read it to. For one thing, it’s got the potential for great sound effects. For another, Lilac is a really likeable character. She reminds me some of Serafina from Serafina and the Black Cloak, because she doesn’t let her fear stand in her way. She’s plucky and tenacious and utterly adorable.

And Lilac Skully is funny. Not in the ha-ha, that’s a funny story way, but in the tongue-in-cheek way that only adults will pick up on. To a kid, Lilac’s fears and thoughts are totally understandable – it makes perfect sense that Lilac is going to “meet a painful, tragic end to her short life” when she falls off the roof. It’s only as adults that we can appreciate the humor.

As for the story, the ghosts are great. The action is great. The setting is great. It’s short enough to read in one sitting, but good enough to spread out over several, if that’s your thing. The second one comes out later this month and is titled Lilac Skully and the Carriage of Lost Souls. You can bet I’ll be picking it up!

Series: The Supernatural Adventures of Lilac Skully #1    Paperback: 178 pages

Published: September 2017    Source: Author Provided

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Lilac Skully and the Haunted House on Goodreads

Home alone in a haunted house. What could go wrong?

Lilac Skully is afraid of ghosts. And a lot of other things, too. After her father’s mysterious disappearance, Lilac must find a way to deal with the notorious ghosts that haunt her home—or better yet—get them to leave.

But when intruders break in, Lilac realizes there’s a danger far worse than her spooky old house. No longer safe, Lilac will need to face her fears, trust herself, and make new friends that will change her life forever.

Lilac Skully and the Haunted House is the first book in the Supernatural Adventures of Lilac Skully, a series of fun, spooky stories with a lot of heart. If you like books about ghosts and awesome little girls—you’ll love this imaginative, haunted tale!

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Review: Wires and Nerve (Vol 1) by Marissa Meyer

People who know me well know I’m a huge fan of Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles. I picked up Cinder on a whim, simply because Cinderella is my favorite Disney Princess. The first page hooked me, and that was that. I anxiously awaited each book in the installment, and though I didn’t think it was possible, enjoyed them all just as much as the first. So, when I heard Meyer had a graphic novel coming out featuring Iko, I knew it was just a matter of time before I read it.

People who know me well also know I’m kind of cheap, which is why it’s taken me until now to actually read Wires and Nerve. Simply put, I had no trouble shelling out $25 for one of the novels, but that seemed a bit too much for what essentially amounted to a handful of comics. I don’t mean to be glib, but graphic novels take me roughly 45 minutes to read – even long ones like Wires and Nerve – and that $25 cost doesn’t seem worth it. Sorry, writers and publishers of the world.

Anyway, I requested it through Overdrive and finally last week my hold came through. Sure enough, it took me less than an hour to read. And most of that time was spent zooming in on my tablet because the pictures were too small.

But you’re not here to read about my cheapness (or are you?). You’re here to read about my thoughts on the things I read.

I freakin’ love Iko, guys. Seriously. She’s probably the most underrated character in the entire Lunar Chronicles universe. She’s funny, resourceful, and serves as the perfect balance to Cinder’s somewhat stoic demeanor. That’s not to say Iko is all fun and games. She’s just as important to the story and the world as the other characters. She’s kind of like R2D2 in Star Wars. The story would probably survive without him, but why would you want it to?

Wires and Nerve finally gives Iko the credit she’s due, though I’ll admit I wish we’d gotten an Iko novel instead. A lot of Iko’s humor and candor doesn’t translate well to the graphic style; she comes off a bit flaky and selfish. I think it’s a situation where what the reader envisions is always going to be different from what the writer envisions, and to me, that’s part of the magic of novels. Showing us a character we’ve imagined and grown to love is tricky, because it calls into question everything we’ve assigned to that character. That’s why we so frequently criticize film adaptations. The “book is better” simply because it gives us the freedom to imagine.

Series: Wires and Nerve #1    Hardcover: 238 pages

Published: January 2017 by Feiwel & Friends    Source: Library via Overdrive

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Wires and Nerve (Vol 1) on Goodreads

When rogue packs of wolf-hybrid soldiers threaten the tenuous peace alliance between Earth and Luna, Iko takes it upon herself to hunt down the soldiers’ leader. She is soon working with a handsome royal guard who forces her to question everything she knows about love, loyalty, and her own humanity. With appearances by Cinder and the rest of the Rampion crew, this is a must-have for fans of the series.

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Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Do you ever read a book and wish the world (or worlds, in this case) was real? That you could just pack a bag and travel to the place you’re reading about?

That’s how I felt listening to A Darker Shade of Magic. 

Sure, the story was interesting, and Kell and Lila certainly captured my attention. But it was the worlds of Red London and White London and Grey London that had me wishing the story was real. I mean – three parallel cities, each with their own characteristics and….personalities? Where only the outline is the same? Sounds like a wonderful set of adventures just waiting to happen.

I suppose that’s how Delilah Bard felt when Kell described it to her.

Speaking of Lila, she was really the star of the novel. Oh, Kell’s fine – if a little boring. Lila is the interesting one, and the reason for Kell’s eventual character growth. Their interactions are a lot of fun, though I’ll be honest and admit that I couldn’t decide if there’s a romance budding or if it’s more of a brother-sister kind of camaraderie. Either way, it works.

For most of the story, Kell and Lila are trying to return a dangerous magical artifact to Black London, which was long ago sealed off because it was deemed too dangerous. Items from Black London either destroy or corrupt the people who wield them – yet, strangely, Lila – who has no magic at all – seems unaffected. What follows is a fast-paced tale of carrying the artifact through the different Londons, all in an attempt to return it to Black London and therefore render it useless. Complicating matters is the fact that a handful of people (understandably) want the powerful item for themselves.

V.E. Schwab’s series gets a lot of love, and after finishing A Darker Shade of Magic it’s easy to see why. She’s created an incredible world, full of magic, but also realistic – it’s not too terribly far-fetched to imagine such things in our world, even if the thought of parallel Londons is a bit out there. Schwab has also written two vastly different, yet incredibly similar characters – characters that as a reader, you want to root for. Or want to be.

Stylistically, A Darker Shade of Magic reminds me of a cross between The Magicians and The Name of the Wind. While written for adults, I think it’s accessible enough that younger readers would easily enjoy it too. Definitely give this one a try if you’re a fantasy fan!

Series: Shades of Magic #1    Hardcover: 400 pages    Audio: 12 hours

Published: February 2015 by Tor Books    Source: Purchased via Scribd

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A Darker Shade of Magic on Goodreads

Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black.

Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.

Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

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Blog Tour: The Other Alcott by Elise Hooper

I vaguely remember reading a kid-friendly version of Little Women as a child – I’m not sure I ever read the full book, but I got enough of the gist to understand why everyone loved it. (That reminds me, I should probably read it as an adult – I’ll add that to the list.) I didn’t know much about Louisa May Alcott, but when I read the synopsis for The Other Alcott, I was immediately intrigued. Another Alcott sister, one who bucked convention as well? Sign me up.

Unfortunately, The Other Alcott failed to grab me, and this one is a DNF. Much as I tried, I couldn’t relate to May. The more I read, the more interested I was in Louisa – which is kinda the exact opposite of what The Other Alcott is trying to do. I don’t necessarily think this is anything to do with Hooper’s writing, but more about me as a reader. May reminded me a bit of other characters I’ve had trouble with –  Ellie in Summer at the Dog and Duck, Scarlett in Caraval, Cheryl Strayed in Wild…women who are billed as strong characters, but who have moments of such galling weakness that it makes me scratch my head and wonder if the author is trying to make them appear vulnerable (but leaning too far into it), or if the strength is a facade. If you’re the kind of reader who really likes watching a character constantly try to redeem themselves, The Other Alcott will likely be right up your alley. For me, it felt a little too whiny, and I wasn’t invested enough to give May a chance.

I’d love to read this with a book club though, because I suspect there’s a lot to talk about – especially if the book is paired with Little Women, and you compare and contrast May and Amy March. Someone do that, and fill me in!!

Paperback: 432 pages    Published: September 2017 by William Morrow    Source: Publisher via TLC

The Other Alcott on Goodreads

Elise Hooper’s debut novel conjures the fascinating, untold story of May Alcott—Louisa’s youngest sister and an artist in her own right.

We all know the story of the March sisters, heroines of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women. But while everyone cheers on Jo March, based on Louisa herself, Amy March is often the least favorite sister. Now, it’s time to learn the truth about the real “Amy”, Louisa’s sister, May.

Stylish, outgoing, creative, May Alcott grows up longing to experience the wide world beyond Concord, Massachusetts. While her sister Louisa crafts stories, May herself is a talented and dedicated artist, taking lessons in Boston, turning down a marriage proposal from a well-off suitor, and facing scorn for entering what is very much a man’s profession.

Life for the Alcott family has never been easy, so when Louisa’s Little Women is published, its success eases the financial burdens they’d faced for so many years. Everyone agrees the novel is charming, but May is struck to the core by the portrayal of selfish, spoiled “Amy March.” Is this what her beloved sister really thinks of her?

So May embarks on a quest to discover her own true identity, as an artist and a woman. From Boston to Rome, London, and Paris, this brave, talented, and determined woman forges an amazing life of her own, making her so much more than merely The Other Alcott.

“Elise Hooper’s thoroughly modern debut gives a fresh take on one of literature’s most beloved families. To read this book is to understand why the women behind Little Women continue to cast a long shadow on our imaginations and dreams. Hooper is a writer to watch!”—Elisabeth Egan, author of A Window Opens

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Photo by Chris Landry Photography

About Elise Hooper

Though a New Englander by birth (and at heart), Elise Hooper lives with her husband and two young daughters in Seattle, where she teaches history and literature.

Find out more about Elise at her website, and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Check out the rest of the Blog Tour stops, and show your fellow readers some love!

 

Thanks to TLC Book Tours and William Morrow for the chance to participate in this tour! 

little beach street bakery

Review: The Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan

Ok, I’ll admit it.

littlebeachstreetbakery

It took me entirely too long to finish The Little Beach Street Bakery, not because the book wasn’t enjoyable, but because a million other things got in the way. I started it after finishing Dark Matter in Mexico, and read about half of it the last day of our trip. After that, I needed to finish Arthur Pepper, then my library hold on You Are A Badass came through, then I had to read If There’s No Tomorrow, and then my library hold on Jenny’s newest, The Cafe by the Sea came through (spoiler – I only made it like 25% of the way through before my hold expired, so now I’m waiting again). Excuses, excuses, I know. All that to say, the poor little bakery sat unattended for weeks.

ANYWAY.

I mentioned in my beach reads post how much I loved the first book I read by Jenny Colgan, The Bookshop on the CornerI had high hopes that it wasn’t a one-time love, either; that I’d be just as thrilled with any of Colgan’s other works. While The Little Beach Street Bakery wasn’t *quite* as fantastic as The Bookshop on the Corner, I’m happy to report that Jenny Colgan has won a spot on my must-read-authors list.

Storywise, this one has some similarities, in that it’s a woman looking for a fresh start. She finds it in an unexpected town, where she knows no one, and somehow manages to turn something she loves into a way to earn a living. There’s a love interest, but that’s not the central part of the story. There’s a best friend, and best of all, there’s a PUFFIN named Neil.

Seriously, how much more could a girl want?

puffin

What I imagine Neil the puffin looks like. And now I want my very own puffin.

Paperback: 416 pages    Published: March 2014 by Sphere    Source: Purchased

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The Little Beach Street Bakery on Goodreads

Amid the ruins of her latest relationship, Polly Waterford moves far away to the sleepy seaside resort of Polbearne, where she lives in a small, lonely flat above an abandoned shop.

To distract her from her troubles, Polly throws herself into her favorite hobby: making bread. But her relaxing weekend diversion quickly develops into a passion. As she pours her emotions into kneading and pounding the dough, each loaf becomes better than the last. Soon, Polly is working her magic with nuts and seeds, olives and chorizo, and the local honey-courtesy of a handsome local beekeeper. Drawing on reserves of determination and creativity Polly never knew she had, she bakes and bakes . . . and discovers a bright new life where she least expected it.

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sharonstruth

Blog Tour: The Sweet Life by Sharon Struth

I’d never read one of Sharon Struth’s novels when I agreed to join the tour for The Sweet Life. I’m not a huge romance reader – I enjoy them, but they’re not my go-to genre. However, the premise sounded right up my alley – a woman looking for adventure and change in Italy? Yes, please.

So I said I wasn’t a big romance reader. Keep that in mind, then, when I tell you The Sweet Life is your pretty standard “roll-your-eyes” romance. By that, I mean that the characters are instantly smitten with each other, and over the next 200 or so pages all you hear is why it won’t work or he’s just not into me or I’m still raw from love gone wrong or so on and so forth. I have absolutely no problem with this, but it’s why you’ll never see a romance rated higher than 3 stars for me. The drama that’s necessary to create a good romance story gets on my nerves!

Please don’t think I’m criticizing. I thoroughly enjoyed The Sweet Life, and for me, that makes a book a winner. I was engaged, I rooted for Mamie, I rooted for Julian, and I rooted for Italy. I loved the cast of characters and they way they bonded. I loved the setting – if anything, I’d have loved more of it – and I loved/hated the food descriptions. (Hated, because now I want nothing but Italian food.) Mamie is a lot of fun, if a little…rash? The contrast between her and Julian is interesting, and it was fun to watch them sort each other out.

Bottom line? Likable characters, a gorgeous setting, and a cheesy-good romance? I’ll take it.

Paperback: 225 pages    Published: September 2017 by Lyrical Press    Source: Publisher via TLC

 

The Sweet Life on Goodreads

In Italy, the best attractions are always off the beaten path . . .

Mamie Weber doesn’t know why she survived that terrible car accident five years ago. Physically, she has only a slight reminder—but emotionally, the pain is still fresh. Deep down she knows her husband would have wanted her to embrace life again. Now she has an opportunity to do just that, spending two weeks in Tuscany reviewing a tour company for her employer’s popular travel guide series. The warmth of the sun, the centuries-old art, a villa on the Umbrian border—it could be just the adventure she needs.

But with adventure comes the unexpected . . . like discovering that her entire tour group is made up of aging ex-hippies reminiscing about their Woodstock days. Or finding herself drawn to the guide, Julian, who is secretly haunted by a tragedy of his own, and seems to disapprove any time she tries something remotely risky—like an impromptu scooter ride with a local man.

As they explore the hilltop towns of Tuscany, Mamie knows that when this blissful excursion is over, she’ll have to return to reality. But when you let yourself wander, life can take some interesting detours …

 

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Purchase Links

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About Sharon Struth

Sharon Struth believes you’re never too old to pursue a dream. The Hourglass, her debut novel, is a finalist in the National Readers’ Choice Awards for Best first Book, and her Blue Moon Lake Novels include the bestseller, Share the Moon.

When she’s not working, she and her husband happily sip their way through the scenic towns of the Connecticut Wine Trail, travel the world, and enjoy spending time with their precious pets and two grown daughters. She writes from the friendliest place she’s ever lived, Bethel, Connecticut. For more information, including where to find her published essays, please visit www.sharonstruth.com or visit her blog, Musings from the Middle Ages & More.

Connect with Sharon

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter

 

Check out the rest of the Blog Tour stops, and show your fellow readers some love!

 

Thanks to TLC Book Tours and Lyrical for the chance to participate in this tour! 

arthurpepper

Book Club: The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick

August Theme and Book Selection

Our July/August theme was Firecracker or dynamic characters. When we started looking at books for that theme, we realized it was a whole lot harder than we’d thought. Most characters, or at least most good characters, are dynamic! So we decided to go with a character who experienced a life change, and that led us to The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick. We all thought it sounded fun.

Paperback: 331 pages    Published: January 2016 by MIRA    Source: Purchased

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My Thoughts

I really enjoyed The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper. It reminded me some of A Man Called Ove, one of my favorite books. Ove is a little darker though; Arthur Pepper has that same goofy stuck-in-a-rut lovableness, but he’s less grumpy. Safe to say if you liked Ove, you’ll probably enjoy Arthur.

Arthur’s journeys are somewhat less exciting than I’d hoped for, or perhaps less adventurous by my standards. I could have read more of them – I didn’t need more in terms of telling the story, but I wanted them to keep going. In particular, there’s a story about a man who owns a bunch of tigers. I could have read a whole book on that, I think. Truthfully there’s not a whole lot of depth to Arthur Pepper, but in this case, it works. You’re left with a light, uplifting read.

Book Club Discussion

Everyone who read book liked it (summers are hard!), and we all kind of agreed that it was a fluff read. One of the girls mentioned that she’d expected Arthur to go traipsing all over the world and was a little disappointed that he doesn’t.

We talked some about what would be on our own charm bracelets, and that quickly led us away from the book discussion as we talked about our travels and dogs and hobbies. One girl described her grandmother’s charm bracelet, and wondered if she’d had any fun secrets like Arthur’s wife.

September Book Club Theme: Bucket List, or a Book You’ve Always Wanted to Read

September Book Club Book: Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper on Goodreads

In this poignant and sparkling debut, a lovable widower embarks on a life-changing adventure

Sixty-nine-year-old Arthur Pepper lives a simple life. He gets out of bed at precisely 7:30 a.m., just as he did when his wife, Miriam, was alive. He dresses in the same gray slacks and mustard sweater vest, waters his fern, Frederica, and heads out to his garden.

But on the one-year anniversary of Miriam’s death, something changes. Sorting through Miriam’s possessions, Arthur finds an exquisite gold charm bracelet he’s never seen before. What follows is a surprising and unforgettable odyssey that takes Arthur from London to Paris and as far as India in an epic quest to find out the truth about his wife’s secret life before they met–a journey that leads him to find hope, healing and self-discovery in the most unexpected places.

Featuring an unforgettable cast of characters with big hearts and irresistible flaws, The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper is a curiously charming debut and a joyous celebration of life’s infinite possibilities.

darkmatter

Review: Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

darkmatter

Drinking a mudslide while totally engrossed in Dark Matter

Holy Hell.

Blake Crouch’s Dark Matter is a total mind-f*ck, guys.

It’s also incredibly absorbing.

Dark Matter intrigued me from the moment I first read the description, and I picked it up in the bookstore at least three times before finally deciding to buy it. I knew it would make a great beach read, and as soon as my toes hit the sand I plopped myself down and got to it. Two days and 27 mudslides later, I was finished.

Jason’s story is so crazy, so compelling, so….OUT THERE… that I just couldn’t put it down. I had to know, even when I suspected I already knew, what was going to happen. I had to know how Crouch would resolve the situation, how he’d manage to explain what was going on in terms a non-science-geek like me could understand. And he managed that well enough – I won’t say I grasped everything, but I caught enough to keep up.

Similar to Andy Weir’s The Martian or Sylvain Neuvel’s Sleeping Giants, Dark Matter is a sci-fi lover’s dream, but it’s one that can also appeal to just about anyone. It’s a great adventure mystery with a bit of the impossible thrown in. The story is grounded in science, real science, and that goes a long way in helping you suspend disbelief. It also makes it somewhat easy to predict, but the best part is – I didn’t care in the slightest.

Paperback: 342 pages    Published: July 2016 by Crown    Source: Purchased

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Dark Matter on Goodreads

“Are you happy with your life?”

Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious.

Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits.

Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.”

In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible.

Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe.

From the author of the bestselling Wayward Pines trilogy, Dark Matter is a brilliantly plotted tale that is at once sweeping and intimate, mind-bendingly strange and profoundly human—a relentlessly surprising science-fiction thriller about choices, paths not taken, and how far we’ll go to claim the lives we dream of.

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Blog Tour: If There’s No Tomorrow by Jennifer Armentrout

About If There’s No Tomorrow

Hardcover: 384 pages
Published: September 2017 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Publisher via TLC Book Tours

Lena Wise is always looking forward to tomorrow, especially at the start of her senior year. She’s ready to pack in as much friend time as possible, to finish college applications, and to maybe let her childhood best friend Sebastian know how she really feels about him. For Lena, the upcoming year is going to be epic—one of opportunities and chances.

Until one choice, one moment, destroys everything.

Now Lena isn’t looking forward to tomorrow. Not when friend time may never be the same. Not when college applications feel all but impossible. Not when Sebastian might never forgive her for what happened.

For what she let happen.

With the guilt growing each day, Lena knows that her only hope is to move on. But how can she move on when she and her friends’ entire existences have been redefined? How can she move on when tomorrow isn’t even guaranteed?

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Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About Jennifer Armentrout

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout lives in West Virginia.

When she’s not hard at work writing, she spends her time, reading, working out, watching zombie movies, and pretending to write. She shares her home with her husband, his K-9 partner named Diesel and her hyper Jack Russell Loki. Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent her time writing short stories, therefore explaining her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes Young Adult Contemporary, Urban Fantasy/Paranormal and Romance. She writes New Adult and Adult romance under the pen name J.Lynn.

She is the author of the Covenant Series (Spencer Hill Press) the Lux Series (Entangled Teen) and the upcoming YA Don’t Look Back (2014) and untitled YA (Fall 2014) from Disney/Hyperion. She is also published with Harlequin Teen and HarperCollins.

Connect with Jennifer

Website | Facebook | Twitter

My Thoughts

I’ll just start off by saying that If There’s No Tomorrow is one of those books I love to hate and hate to love. It reminded me so much of how I felt reading Beautiful Disaster or Ten Birthdays – I couldn’t put them down, but I also wanted to throw them across the room. If that’s not a ringing endorsement, I don’t know what is.

Seriously, though, despite some of my better judgement, I really enjoyed If There’s No Tomorrow. It’s YA through and through, from the overly dramatic characters to the adorably-naive conflicts. There are friendships and boys and summer jobs, and there are bullies and bad things and fights with parents. Really, what more could a girl want?

What drove me nuts, though, was the way Lena’s parents – and half the other adults in the book – handled what happened. (Which I can’t really tell you because it’d be a spoiler…) Anyway, there seemed to be a lot of disappointment and blame going around that frankly seemed inappropriate and unrealistic. Having never been in the situation Lena finds herself in, I could be totally wrong – but I can’t imagine any of the parents I know reacting quite the way Lena’s did at first. Shrug.

Even that wasn’t enough to keep me from reading If There’s No Tomorrow in one night. Like I said, I couldn’t put it down! Sometimes I think we get so wrapped up in what makes a book good or bad or whathaveyou. The best stories transport you to a different time and place, and that’s what this one did for me. For one evening, I forgot everything and just lost myself in Lena’s story. If that’s not a book worth reading, I don’t know what is.

Check out the rest of the Blog Tour stops, and show your fellow readers some love!

 

Thanks to TLC Book Tours and Harlequin Teen for the chance to participate in this tour! 

Review: You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero

About You Are A Badassyou are a badass

Paperback: 256 pages
Published: April 2013 by Running Press
Source: Library via Overdrive

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Goodreads DescriptionThe #1 New York Times Bestseller YOU ARE A BADASS IS THE SELF-HELP BOOK FOR PEOPLE WHO DESPERATELY WANT TO IMPROVE THEIR LIVES BUT DON’T WANT TO GET BUSTED DOING IT. 

In this refreshingly entertaining how-to guide, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author and world-traveling success coach, Jen Sincero, serves up 27 bite-sized chapters full of hilariously inspiring stories, sage advice, easy exercises, and the occasional swear word. If you’re ready to make some serious changes around here, You Are a Badass will help you: Identify and change the self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviors that stop you from getting what you want, blast past your fears so you can take big exciting risks, figure out how to make some damn money already, learn to love yourself and others, set big goals and reach them – it will basically show you how to create a life you totally love, and how to create it NOW.

By the end of You Are a Badass, you’ll understand why you are how you are, how to love what you can’t change, how to change what you don’t love, and how to use The Force to kick some serious ass.

If you’re wanting to kick some serious ass in the money department (you wanna?) and start making the kind of dinero you ain’t never made before, pre-order the next book in the series that’s all about your financial badassery: You Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth, coming April 2017 from Viking Books.

My Review

You Are A Badass seems to be EVERYWHERE lately. So everywhere, in fact, that I thought it was a recently published book, not one published 4 years ago. Ah well, not that it matters, I suppose.

You Are A Badass is a self-helpish book about really going for it, whether that “it” is starting a business, traveling the world, starting a family, or just putting down the potato chips. There’s no shortage of motivational “kick in the pants” books, but somehow, Jen Sincero manages to keep hers short, sweet, and fresh.

A lot of self-help/motivational books fall short in the “action step” department. They focus too heavily on the need for improvement, and spend very little time actually telling you how to improve. I understand the difficulty, and many of these books are still worthwhile reads. However, when an author gives you concrete suggestions for putting your money where your mouth is, it really sticks out to me.

Jen Sincero does that with You Are A Badass, and she does it in a way that isn’t overbearing. Her suggestions are more like guideposts – she leaves it open enough that everyone will get something different out of her suggestion, but she still sets a direction. (That said, I did get tired of being told to love myself in every single chapter.)

For me, You Are A Badass wasn’t earth-shattering and really didn’t contain anything new and unusual. But, Sincero’s no-nonsense talk and to-the-point snippets were just what I needed. I’ve let a few areas of my life slide, and have been living the “Big Snooze” as Sincero calls it. Reading books like You Are A Badass helps keep me focused, and gets my wheels turning. In my mind, that’s what makes a self-help book a success – it inspires.

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