Most Anticipated Reads | July 2016

july2016I am waaaayyyyyy behind with everything in the blogosphere and the book community. *sobs* But even though it’s half way through the month already, it’s still worth sharing my most anticipated reads for July!

Signs of You by Emily France
Publication: July 19th 2016 by Soho Teen

27272341Since sixteen-year-old Riley Strout lost her mother two years ago, her saving grace has been her quirky little family in the grief support group she joined as a freshman. Jay, Kate, and Noah understand her pain; each lost a loved one, and they’ve stuck together in spite of their differences, united by tragedies only they understand.

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

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


Cruel Heart Broken by Emma Haughton
Publication: July 1st 2016 by Usborne

29920139Laurie is a good girl – so everyone thinks. But seven months ago she did something that she can’t undo and it’s tearing her apart.

Charlie used to be her best friend. He’s done something he regrets too…and now someone has died.

Two impulsive decisions. Two toxic secrets. Too many hearts broken. Partly inspired by a true story, this is a heart-wrenching novel about impulsive mistakes, and their devastating consequences.


The Killer in Me by Margot Harrison
Published July 12th 2016 by Disney-Hyperion

26095500Seventeen-year-old Nina Barrows knows all about the Thief. She’s intimately familiar with his hunting methods: how he stalks and kills at random, how he disposes of his victims’ bodies in an abandoned mine in the deepest, most desolate part of a desert.

Now, for the first time, Nina has the chance to do something about the serial killer that no one else knows exists. With the help of her former best friend, Warren, she tracks the Thief two thousand miles, to his home turf—the deserts of New Mexico.

But the man she meets there seems nothing like the brutal sociopath with whom she’s had a disturbing connection her whole life. To anyone else, Dylan Shadwell is exactly what he appears to be: a young veteran committed to his girlfriend and her young daughter. As Nina spends more time with him, she begins to doubt the truth she once held as certain: Dylan Shadwell is the Thief. She even starts to wonder . . . what if there is no Thief?


What the Dead Want by Norah Olson
Publication: July 26th 2016 by Katherine Tegen Books

2721729716 -year-old Gretchen takes photographs to understand the world around her, a passion her mother Mona fostered and encouraged when she was still around. Since her mom disappeared years ago, Gretchen and her dad have lived on their own in New York City, haunted by Mona’s absence.

When Gretchen’s great aunt Esther calls unexpectedly to tell her that she has inherited the pre-Civil War mansion on her mother’s side of the family in upstate New York, Gretchen understands nothing except that her aunt needs her help. But what she finds there is beyond her imagination. The house is crumbling apart, filled with stacks of papers and journals from decades, even centuries past, and it’s crawling with rodents. It’s also full of secrets and a legacy of racism and violence so reprehensible that the ghosts of the past are exacting revenge on the living.

Somehow the mystery of Mona’s disappearance and the atrocities that happened on the land during the Civil War are inextricably intertwined, and it’s up to Gretchen to figure out how…before even more lives are lost.


P.S. I Like You by Kasie West
Publication: July 26th 2016 by Point

25486998 (1)What if the person you were falling for was a total mystery?

While Lily is spacing out in Chemistry one day, she picks up her pencil and scribbles a line from one of her favorite songs on the desk. The next day, someone else has written back to her on the desk! Soon enough Lily and the mystery student are exchanging notes, and lyrics, and even sharing secrets. When Lily finds out that her anonymous pen pal is a guy, she’s flustered — and kind of feels like she’s falling for him. She and her best friend set out to unravel the identity of the letter writer — but when the truth is revealed, the guy is the LAST person Lily could have ever imagined it to be. Now that Lily knows the truth, can she untangle her feelings and gather the courage to listen to her heart?

From beloved author Kasie West (The Distance Between Us) comes an utterly charming story about mixed messages, missed connections, and the magic of good old-fashioned secret admirer notes.


The Lost & Found by Katrina Leno
Published July 5th 2016 by HarperCollins

23253261A charming and imaginative new novel about getting lost before you can be found.

LOST:
Frannie and Louis met in an online support group when they were both younger. They have never met face-to-face. They don’t even know each other’s real names. All they know is that they both have a mysterious tendency to lose things. Well, not lose them, exactly. Things just seem to…disappear.

FOUND:
They each receive news in the mail that sets them off on a road trip to Austin, Texas, looking for answers—and each other. Along the way, each one begins to find, as if by magic, important things the other has lost. And by the time they finally meet in person, they realize that the things you lose might be things you weren’t meant to have at all, and that you never know what you might find if you just take a chance.

The Lost & Found is a bighearted novel about connections (missed and found), family (the kind you’re born with and the kind you make for yourself), and unexpected journeys (on the road, and of the heart), from an author who Publishers Weekly called “a fierce new presence.”


Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, John Tiffany
Publication: July 31st 2016 by Arthur A. Levine Books

29056083Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, a new play by Jack Thorne, is the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. It will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on 30th July 2016

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes darkness comes from unexpected places.


Share your July TBR in the comments!
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Cover images link out to respective Goodreads page.
Click and add them to your shelves.😉
Book description and cover image from Goodreads

Book Review | What I Couldn’t Tell You by Faye Bird

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Title: What I Couldn’t Tell You
Author: Faye Bird
Publication: May 1st 2016 by Usborne Publishing
Format: Finished copy in Paperback
Source: Provided by the publisher
ISBN: 9781474903073
Are You Still There

synopsis
When love turns to jealousy, when jealousy turns to rage, when rage turns to destruction…
Laura was head over heels in love with Joe. But now Laura lies in a coma and Joe has gone missing. Was he the one who attacked her?
Laura’s sister Tessie is selectively mute. She can’t talk but she can listen. And as people tell her their secrets, she thinks she’s getting close to understanding what happened on that fateful night.

review

I received a finished copy of this book from Usborne in exchange for an honest review. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
What I Couldn’t Tell You is as straightforward as its synopsis when it comes to telling what you’re about to read when you pick up this book. From love to jealousy that turned into rage that eventually lead to destruction, What I Couldn’t Tell You is a book that will keep you turning the pages with its magnetic storytelling.
The book immediately jumps in to the night of Laura’s attack. Although the chapters for Laura and Joe were kept short, it was already enough to create a build up for where the story will be heading. Then the story follows through with Tessie, Laura’s sister who is selectively mute.
Tessie’s disorder is what made me interested in reading this book. Aside from the fact that it’s a mystery/thriller story, I’ve never read anything where a character is selectively mute and to have that play a big part in the story made everything a lot more gripping.
The mystery was depicted effectively making sure that it’s readers won’t put the book down until you reach the end but personally, I was expecting a lot more with the reveal. I already saw it coming so it wasn’t mind blowing for me but it’s still surprising in a way since it’s not really about the who did what but more of the “why” it happened. But aside from the mystery, What I Couldn’t Tell You is a lot of many things. It’s about coping and the struggle of having to live normally at a time of crisis. It also dealt with bullying. Tessie is an easy target, with her condition, she’s put into a place where it’s difficult to stand up for herself.
It also talked a lot more about “love” or the characters perception of it. I just don’t get Tessie’s feelings for Billy. It strike me as “insta-love” and blind love. I can’t say much but I’m really not buying whatever Tessie feels for him. #sorrynotsorry  But all in all, What I Couldn’t Tell You is an effective thriller book that will keep you on your toes and a definite pick-me-up book for those who are looking for a quick, intense read.
Rating:

3h


whatiliked

  • The Cover – I don’t know why but I just love the cover of this book. It’s not something that I really find attractive at first glance but you wouldn’t really notice the details if you don’t scrutinize. But anyway, I like how there are 2 people in the cover that I guess represents Laura and Joe. I just love books that incorporate their covers with the story. Not to mention that it already gives off the thriller vibe.
  • Selective Mutism – I don’t remember where I first heard of Selective Mutism but I’m aware that there are really people who are selectively mute. What I didn’t know about it are the things that they go through. It’s not like they just chose not to speak; it’s an actual disorder. And the fact that the book’s major POV is in the shoes of Tessie who suffers from the condition is really eye-opening.
  • Narration – The narration was effortless. It was easy to read and understand, and the transition is thoroughly fluid.

end

 

 

 

 

Book description and cover image from Goodreads

Blog Tour | The Girl I Used To Be by April Henry [Review + Excerpt + Giveaway]

23018249Title: The Girl I Used To Be
Author: April Henry
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Format: Advance Reading Copy
Source: Provided by the publisher via NetGalley
ISBN: 9781627793322

How Hard Can Love Be? (Normal, #2)


synopsis

When Olivia’s mother was killed, everyone suspected her father of murder. But his whereabouts remained a mystery. Fast forward fourteen years. New evidence now proves Olivia’s father was actually murdered on the same fateful day her mother died. That means there’s a killer still at large. It’s up to Olivia to uncover who that may be. But can she do that before the killer tracks her down first?

review

I received a digital review copy of this book from Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group via NetGalley for my participation in this blog tour. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
I really like books where the title alone already tells something about the story, especially when it comes to mystery reads. And that’s exactly what The Girl I Used To Be did for me.
Olivia Reinhart is an emancipated teen, but prior to that, she was little Ariel Benson, daughter of Naomi Benson and Terry Weeks. She never had a real family after her mother was murdered some 14 years ago, and it was believed that her father did it and fled. But when a new evidence resurfaced that her father was also a victim, she sets out to Medford, the town where her mother grew up, to find out what really happened to her parents.
The Girl I Used To Be was a quick and easy read in terms of the writing style. Although, there were two things to consider why it is so. First, it only has 240 pages. Second, it’s obviously a page turner, (almost every mystery/thriller book is). The chapters were kept short which I really liked, but the pacing was a bit slow. I keep turning each page waiting for something to happen but there really wasn’t much going on.
There were also some things I noticed that bothered me a little bit and it’s how Olivia easily has access to everything she needs to know. All she had to do is ask around and the people will just tell her willingly. She’s a total stranger who’s hiding her real identity for crying out loud. You don’t just answer to people when they ask you about your friends or a murder of a friend, do you? So that’s just some rant. Anyway…
The mystery  in this book is ever present. I like how it didn’t take long to tell what I’m supposed to be uncovering. The book drops the bomb right at the beginning, but as the story goes on things just plateaued out. The suspense was just lacking for me, most of the story is just Olivia trying to figure things out.
Speaking of figuring things out, something I noticed about mystery books is that when it comes to the MC’s hunt for whodunit, they’re always pressing the suspicion on a particular character that is obviously some red herring. And of course, The Girl I Used To Be used that in the plot. The good thing is that it did not spoil the surprise when it comes to the actual reveal. My heart was actually beating so fast when the moment came. But I have to admit, it didn’t last long. I’m not saying I’m disappointed. The Girl I Used To Be is actually a good mystery book but it just lacked in some aspects.
Rating:

3h


excerpt

The Girl I Used To Be
by April Henry
Copyright © 2016 by April Henry
CHAPTER 1
SCATTER MY BONES
The only sound I can hear is my own panicked breathing. I’m running flat out through the forest. Then my toe catches a root, and suddenly I’m flying.
Until I’m not. I come down hard. With my hands cuffed in front of me, I can’t even really break my fall. Despite the plastic boot on my left leg, I’m up again in a crazy scrambling second, spitting out dirt and pine needles as I start sprinting again.
Running like my life depends on it. Because it does.
Three weeks ago, I was living in Portland. Working in a supermarket deli. Slicing turkey breast and handing out cheese samples on toothpicks.
Now I’m hurtling through the Southern Oregon woods, being chased by a killer. And no one knows I’m here.
Because of the handcuffs, I can’t pump my fists. Instead, I have to swing them in tandem. Trying to avoid another fall, I lift my knees higher as the ground rises. I can’t hear my pursuer, just my own panting breath.
If I don’t come back, will Duncan ever know what happened to me? These woods can hide things for years. Will animals scatter my bones, plants twine around my remains?
When I reach the top of the hill, I don’t slow down. Instead, I try to lengthen my stride. It’s impossible to maintain a rhythm. I leap over a log, splash through the silver thread of a creek. My mouth is so dry. It tastes of dirt and the bitterness of fear.
A Steller’s jay startles up from a branch, squawking. If only I could take wing and fly. But I’m stuck here on earth, legs churning, staggering over this uneven ground.
I can’t stop or I’ll die.
The reality is that I’m probably going to die anyway. And if that’s so, I’m going to go down fighting.

abouttheauthor

aprilI write mysteries and thrillers. I live in Portland, Oregon with my family.
If you’ve read one of my books, I would love to hear from you. Hearing from readers makes me eager to keep writing.
When I was 12, I sent a short story about a six-foot tall frog who loved peanut butter to Roald Dahl, the author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He liked it so much he arranged to have it published in an international children’s magazine.
My dream of writing went dormant until I was in my 30s, working at a corporate job, and started writing books on the side. Those first few years are now thankfully a blur. Now I’m very lucky to make a living doing what I love. I have written 13 novels for adults and teens, with more on the way. My books have gotten starred reviews, been picked for Booksense, translated into six languages, been named to state reading lists, and short-listed for the Oregon Book Award.
I also review YA literature and mysteries and thrillers for the Oregonian, and have written articles for both The Writer and Writers Digest.
www.aprilhenrymysteries.com
Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads 

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Win (1) finished copy of THE GIRL I USED TO BE by April Henry
Open to US/CAN Residents Only.
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This blog post is part of The Girl I Used To Be Tour hosted by
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Most Anticipated Reads | May 2016

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Warning: This list can have you end up book hoarding. (Who says it’s such a bad thing?)
This is my longest list yet!

The Crown (The Selection #5) by Kiera Cass
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by HarperTeen

26074181Prepare to be swept off your feet by The Crown—the eagerly awaited, wonderfully romantic fifth and final book in the Selection series. Eadlyn didn’t think she would find a real partner among the Selection’s thirty-five suitors, let alone true love. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and now Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more difficult—and more important—than she ever expected.

Girl Against the Universe by Paula Stokes
Publication: May 17th 2016 by HarperTeen

22297294Maguire is bad luck.

No matter how many charms she buys off the internet or good luck rituals she performs each morning, horrible things happen when Maguire is around. Like that time the rollercoaster jumped off its tracks. Or the time the house next door caught on fire. Or that time her brother, father, and uncle were all killed in a car crash—and Maguire walked away with barely a scratch.

It’s safest for Maguire to hide out in her room, where she can cause less damage and avoid meeting new people who she could hurt. But then she meets Jordy, an aspiring tennis star. Jordy is confident, talented, and lucky, and he’s convinced he can help Maguire break her unlucky streak. Maguire knows that the best thing she can do for Jordy is to stay away. But it turns out staying away is harder than she thought.

From author Paula Stokes comes a funny and poignant novel about accepting the past, embracing the future, and learning to make your own luck.


The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Roaring Brook Press

25028285This is what it means to love someone. This is what it means to grieve someone. It’s a little bit like a black hole. It’s a little bit like infinity.

Gottie H. Oppenheimer is losing time. Literally. When the fabric of the universe around her seaside town begins to fray, she’s hurtled through wormholes to her past:

To last summer, when her grandfather Grey died. To the afternoon she fell in love with Jason, who wouldn’t even hold her hand at the funeral. To the day her best friend Thomas moved away and left her behind with a scar on her hand and a black hole in her memory.

Although Grey is still gone, Jason and Thomas are back, and Gottie’s past, present, and future are about to collide—and someone’s heart is about to be broken.


Edge of Wild by Danika Stone
Publication: May 1st 2016 by Stonehouse Publishing

27851112Transplanted from New York City to the tiny mountain town of Waterton, Alberta with the task of saving a floundering new hotel, Rich Evans is desperate to return to the city as soon as he can. The locals seem unusually hostile towards his efforts, or maybe even menacing, and was that a cougar on his door-step last night? As Rich begins to wonder whether his predecessor disappeared of his own accord, he finds himself strongly drawn to Louise Newman, the garage mechanic who is fixing his suddenly unreliable BMW, and the only person in Waterton who doesn’t seem desperate to run him out of town. As Rich works on the hotel, the town is torn apart by a series of gruesome, unsolved murders. With Louise as his only ally in a town that seems set against him, Rich can’t help but wonder: will he be the next victim?

The May Queen Murders by Sarah Jude
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by HMH Books for Young Readers

25897757Stay on the roads. Don’t enter the woods. Never go out at night.

Those are the rules in Rowan’s Glen, a remote farming community in the Missouri Ozarks where Ivy Templeton’s family has lived for centuries. It’s an old-fashioned way of life, full of superstition and traditions, and sixteen-year-old Ivy loves it. The other kids at school may think the Glen kids are weird, but Ivy doesn’t care—she has her cousin Heather as her best friend. The two girls share everything with each other—or so Ivy thinks. When Heather goes missing after a May Day celebration, Ivy discovers that both her best friend and her beloved hometown are as full of secrets as the woods that surround them.


Suffer Love by Ashley Herring Blake
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by HMH Books for Young Readers

23197843Hadley St. Clair’s life changed the day she came home to a front door covered in slips of paper, each of them revealing the ugly truth about her father. Now as her family falls apart in the wake of his year-long affair, Hadley wants everyone-her dad most of all-to leave her alone.

Then she meets Sam Bennett, a cute new boy who inexplicably “feels like home” to Hadley. Hadley and Sam’s connection is undeniable, but Sam has a secret about his family that could ruin everything.

Funny and passionate, Suffer Love is a story about first love, family dysfunction, and the fickle hand of fate.


Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Disney-Hyperion

22537367Warm Hawaiian sun. Lazy beach days. Flirty texts with her boyfriend back in Seattle.

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

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

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


Shuffle, Repeat by Jen Klein
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Random House Books for Young Readers

26067503When Harry Met Sally for YA romance readers. This opposites-attract love story is perfect for fans of Huntley Fitzpatrick, Stephanie Perkins, and Jenny Han.

June wants high school to end and real life to begin. Oliver is soaking up senior year’s glory days. They could have coasted through high school, knowing about—but not really knowing—each other.

Except that their moms have arranged for Oliver to drive June to school. Every. Single. Day.

Suddenly these two opposites are fighting about music, life . . . pretty much everything. But love is unpredictable. When promises—and hearts—get broken, Oliver and June must figure out what really matters. And then fight for it.


The Girl I Used to Be by April Henry
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Christy Ottaviano Books

23018249When Olivia’s mother was killed, everyone suspected her father of murder. But his whereabouts remained a mystery. Fast forward fourteen years. New evidence now proves Olivia’s father was actually murdered on the same fateful day her mother died. That means there’s a killer still at large. It’s up to Olivia to uncover who that may be. But can she do that before the killer tracks her down first?

Please Don’t Tell by Laura Tims
Publication: May 24th 2016 by HarperCollins

17933522Joy killed Adam Gordon—at least, that’s what she thinks. The night of the party is hazy at best. But she knows what Adam did to her twin sister, Grace, and she knows he had to pay for it.

What Joy doesn’t expect is that someone else saw what happened. And one night a note is shoved through her open window, threatening Joy that all will be revealed. Now the anonymous blackmailer starts using Joy to expose the secrets of their placid hometown. And as the demands escalate, Joy must somehow uncover the blackmailer’s identity before Joy is forced to make a terrible choice.

In this darkly compelling narrative, debut author Laura Tims explores the complicated relationship between two sisters, and what one will do for the other. It’s a story that will keep readers turning pages and questioning their own sense of right and wrong.


Wanderlost by Jen Malone
Publication: May 31st 2016 by HarperTeen

26244548Not all those who wander are lost, but Aubree Sadler most definitely is on this novel’s whirlwind trip through Europe. A romantic and charming YA debut perfect for fans of Stephanie Perkins and Jenny Han.

Aubree can’t think of a better place to be than in perfectly boring Ohio, and she’s ready for a relaxing summer. But when her older sister, Elizabeth, gets into real trouble, Aubree is talked into taking over Elizabeth’s summer job, leading a group of senior citizens on a bus tour through Europe.

Aubree doesn’t even make it to the first stop in Amsterdam before their perfect plan unravels, leaving her with no phone, no carefully prepared binder full of helpful facts, and an unexpected guest: the tour company owner’s son, Sam. Considering she’s pretending to be Elizabeth, she absolutely shouldn’t fall for him, but she can’t help it, especially with the most romantic European cities as the backdrop for their love story.

But her relationship with Sam is threatening to ruin her relationship with her sister, and she feels like she’s letting both of them down. Aubree knows this trip may show her who she really is—she just hopes she likes where she ends up.


Wild Swans by Jessica Spotswood
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

27015393The summer before Ivy’s senior year is going to be golden; all bonfires, barbeques, and spending time with her best friends. For once, she will just get to be. No summer classes, none of Granddad’s intense expectations to live up to the family name. For generations, the Milbourn women have lead extraordinary lives—and died young and tragically. Granddad calls it a legacy, but Ivy considers it a curse. Why else would her mother have run off and abandoned her as a child?

But when her mother unexpectedly returns home with two young daughters in tow, all of the stories Ivy wove to protect her heart start to unravel. The very people she once trusted now speak in lies. And all of Ivy’s ambition and determination cannot defend her against the secrets of the Milbourn past….


The Only Thing Worse Than Me Is You by Lily Anderson
Publication: May 17th 2016 by St. Martin’s Griffin

26114524Trixie Watson has two very important goals for senior year: to finally save enough to buy the set of Doctor Who figurines at the local comic books store, and to place third in her class and knock Ben West–and his horrendous new mustache that he spent all summer growing–down to number four.

Trixie will do anything to get her name ranked over Ben’s, including give up sleep and comic books–well, maybe not comic books–but definitely sleep. After all, the war of Watson v. West is as vicious as the Doctor v. Daleks and Browncoats v. Alliance combined, and it goes all the way back to the infamous monkey bars incident in the first grade. Over a decade later, it’s time to declare a champion once and for all.

The war is Trixie’s for the winning, until her best friend starts dating Ben’s best friend and the two are unceremoniously dumped together and told to play nice. Finding common ground is odious and tooth-pullingly-painful, but Trixie and Ben’s cautious truce slowly transforms into a fandom-based tentative friendship. When Trixie’s best friend gets expelled for cheating and Trixie cries foul play, however, they have to choose who to believe and which side they’re on–and they might not pick the same side.


The Unexpected Everythingby Morgan Matson
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

17838528Andie had it all planned out.

When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future.

Important internship? Check.

Amazing friends? Check.

Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks)

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life.

Because here’s the thing – if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected.

And where’s the fun in that?


If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Flatiron Books

23947922A big-hearted novel about being seen for who you really are.

Amanda Hardy is the new girl in school. Like anyone else, all she wants is to make friends and fit in. But Amanda is keeping a secret. She’s determined not to get too close to anyone.

But when she meets sweet, easygoing Grant, Amanda can’t help but start to let him in. As they spend more time together, she realizes just how much she is losing by guarding her heart. She finds herself yearning to share with Grant everything about herself–including her past. But Amanda’s terrified that once she tells him the truth, he won’t be able to see past it.

Because the secret that Amanda’s been keeping? It’s that she used to be Andrew.

Will the truth cost Amanda her new life–and her new love?

If I Was Your Girl is a universal story about feeling different–and a love story that everyone will root for.


Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch
Publication: May 3rd 2016 by Simon Pulse

25756328Lina is spending the summer in Tuscany, but she isn’t in the mood for Italy’s famous sunshine and fairy-tale landscape. She’s only there because it was her mother’s dying wish that she get to know her father. But what kind of father isn’t around for sixteen years? All Lina wants to do is get back home.

But then Lina is given a journal that her mom had kept when she lived in Italy. Suddenly Lina’s uncovering a magical world of secret romances, art, and hidden bakeries. A world that inspires Lina, along with the ever-so-charming Ren, to follow in her mother’s footsteps and unearth a secret that has been kept from Lina for far too long. It’s a secret that will change everything she knew about her mother, her father—and even herself.

People come to Italy for love and gelato, someone tells her, but sometimes they discover much more.


The Inside of Out by Jenn Marie Thorne
Publication: May 31st 2016 by Dial Books

27155350Meg Cabot meets Glee in this breezy, hilarious, deceptively smart YA about privilege, pretense, and realizing that every story needs a hero. Sometimes it’s just not you.

When her best friend Hannah comes out the day before junior year, Daisy is so ready to let her ally flag fly that even a second, way more blindsiding confession can’t derail her smiling determination to fight for gay rights.

Before you can spell LGBTQIA, Daisy’s leading the charge to end their school’s antiquated ban on same-sex dates at dances—starting with homecoming. And if people assume Daisy herself is gay? Meh, so what. It’s all for the cause.

What Daisy doesn’t expect is for “the cause” to blow up—starting with Adam, the cute college journalist whose interview with Daisy for his university paper goes viral, catching fire in the national media. #Holy #cats.

With the story spinning out of control, protesters gathering, Hannah left in the dust of Daisy’s good intentions, and Daisy’s mad attraction to Adam feeling like an inconvenient truth, Daisy finds herself caught between her bold plans, her bad decisions, and her big fat mouth.


The Beautiful Pretender (Thornbeck #2) by Melanie Dickerson
Publication: May 17th 2016 by Thomas Nelson

25891581What happens when a margrave realizes he’s fallen in love with a servant?

The Margrave of Thornbeck has to find a bride, fast. He invites ten noble-born ladies from around the country to be his guests at Thornbeck Castle for two weeks, a time to test these ladies and reveal their true character.

Avelina is only responsible for two things: making sure her deception goes undetected and avoiding being selected as the margrave’s bride. Since the latter seems unlikely, she concentrates on not getting caught. No one must know she is merely a maidservant, sent by the Earl of Plimmwald to stand in for his daughter, Dorothea.

Despite Avelina’s best attempts at diverting attention from herself, the margrave has taken notice. And try as she might, she can’t deny her own growing feelings. But something else is afoot in the castle. Something sinister that could have far worse—far deadlier—consequences. Will Avelina be able to stop the evil plot? And at what cost?


Some Kind of Happiness by Claire Legrand
Publication: May 17th 2016 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

13260524THINGS FINLEY HART DOESN’T WANT TO TALK ABOUT

• Her parents, who are having problems. (But they pretend like they’re not.)
• Being sent to her grandparents’ house for the summer.
• Never having met said grandparents.
• Her blue days—when life feels overwhelming, and it’s hard to keep her head up. (This happens a lot.)

Finley’s only retreat is the Everwood, a forest kingdom that exists in the pages of her notebook. Until she discovers the endless woods behind her grandparents’ house and realizes the Everwood is real–and holds more mysteries than she’d ever imagined, including a family of pirates that she isn’t allowed to talk to, trees covered in ash, and a strange old wizard living in a house made of bones.

With the help of her cousins, Finley sets out on a mission to save the dying Everwood and uncover its secrets. But as the mysteries pile up and the frightening sadness inside her grows, Finley realizes that if she wants to save the Everwood, she’ll first have to save herself.

Reality and fantasy collide in this powerful, heartfelt novel about family, depression, and the power of imagination.


Share your May TBR in the comments!
Thanks for stopping by!
Cover images link out to respective Goodreads page.
Click and add them to your shelves.😉
Book description and cover image from Goodreads

ARC Review | The Foxglove Killings by Tara Kelly

23293956Title: The Foxglove Killings
Author: Tara Kelly
Publication: September 1st 2015 by Entangled: Teen
Format: Advance Reading Copy
Source: Provided by the publisher via NetGalley
ISBN: 9781633751651

The Foxglove Killings


synopsisGramps always said that when the crickets were quiet, something bad was coming. And the crickets have been as silent as the dead. It started with the murdered deer in the playground with the unmistakable purple of a foxglove in its mouth. But in the dying boondock town of Emerald Cove, life goes on.
I work at Gramps’s diner, and the cakes―the entitled rich kids who vacation here―make our lives hell. My best friend, Alex Pace, is the one person who gets me. Only Alex has changed. He’s almost like a stranger now. I can’t figure it out…or why I’m having distinctly more-than-friend feelings for him. Ones I shouldn’t be having.
Then one of the cakes disappears.
When she turns up murdered, a foxglove in her mouth, a rumor goes around that Alex was the last person seen with her—and everyone but me believes it. Well, everyone except my worst enemy, Jenika Shaw. When Alex goes missing, it’s up to us to prove his innocence and uncover the true killer. But the truth will shatter everything I’ve ever known about myself — and Alex.

 

reviewI received a Digital ARC of this book from Entangled Publishing via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
Books like The Foxglove Killings are the reason why I really enjoy reading YA Mysteries-slash-Thrillers. I was totally absorbed by this book right off the bat.
Nova is drawn to a series of killings that involves her small town. When she and her friend Alex finds a dead deer on a playground, she becomes intrigued. Not only that it appears to be intentionally displayed there, a foxglove was on its mouth seeming to convey a message.
After the discovery of the dead deer, more people gets killed and yes, with a foxglove on their mouths. But is it just a coincidence that the victims are those who Nova dislikes? And what about the timely letters from a mysterious admirer she keeps receiving? Seriously, I had those questions with me that really made me turn after page.
I actually didn’t feel that scared for Nova because it was apparent that whoever is doing the killings wasn’t targeting her but, it did let me experience a different kind of fear. The thriller aspect of The Foxglove Killings is inclined more in the fear of knowing who the killer is rather than the fear of having the main character, you know… killed. Because the main character never dies! But of course, I’m speaking for myself. Still, this book kept me on my toes the whole time.
There’s also the diary entries between each chapters that appears to be written by the killer. It added more “chill” in the books whole setting especially when you read what’s going on inside the suspects mind.
Aside from the mystery, there’s also a touch of romance in this book. I love how this book made me feel the feels but yet didn’t really revolve in Nova and Alex’s complicated relationship. Although, I really wouldn’t mind if it did.
But what left me uber speechless is whodunit’s identity. Why didn’t I see it coming??? It’s not like there weren’t enough clues. There are! Well, there is one that almost gave it away but I had to let it go because of the red herring that got me thinking someone else is the killer. I still remember what I felt while I was reading the part where I though I knew who the suspect was already but NO. Just when you think you already know it, something will just explode on your face then boom, gotcha. (I can hear the author laughing at me right at that moment 😛 ) The actual motive was kind of meh but actually, he/she (not gonna spoil you!) is a psycho so whatever the motive is, it is what it is.
The Foxglove Killings didn’t disappoint, the suspense was ultimately worth it. And for a mystery/thriller junkie like me, this one is a must read.
Rating:

4


whatiliked

  • The Title – The title alone sold me this book. I mean, The Foxglove Killings? Who wouldn’t pick up a book with that title? It literally emits an eerie and intriguing vibe.
  • Unpredictable – This book got me. I fell for the bait. Who I thought was the killer turned out to be innocent. Whodunit’s identity was really a surprise and you’ll only find out who it is if you really really really paid attention to the tiny details. For the record, I suspected this one character (the real suspect) because of one diary entry that narrowed down the suspects for me but the amount of foreshadowing in the following chapters convinced me otherwise. Although, there were some predictable parts, if you look at it on a larger picture, The Foxglove Killings is a book that will keep you guessing till the end.
  • Feels Wringer – OMG this book!!! I know this is more of a Mystery/Thriller book but the romance in it is just— *dead* Nova and Alex’s complicated relationship made me feel all sorts of emotions and drained it all off of me. I had one of those puts-down-book-gathers-feels moment. Just AAAAAAAGGGGGGHHHHHH! My heart, my poor heart…

end

Book Description and Cover Image from Goodreads

ARC Review | A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

24376529Title: A Madness So Discreet
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Publication: October 6th 2015 by Katherine Tegen Books
Format: Advance Reading Copy
Source: Provided by the publisher via Edelweiss
ISBN: 9780062320865

A Madness So Discreet


synopsisGrace Mae knows madness.
She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.
When her voice returns in a burst of violence, Grace is banished to the dark cellars, where her mind is discovered by a visiting doctor who dabbles in the new study of criminal psychology. With her keen eyes and sharp memory, Grace will make the perfect assistant at crime scenes. Escaping from Boston to the safety of an ethical Ohio asylum, Grace finds friendship and hope, hints of a life she should have had. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who stalks young women. Grace, continuing to operate under the cloak of madness, must hunt a murderer while she confronts the demons in her own past.

reviewI received a digital review copy of this book from HarperCollins via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
A Madness So Discreet tells of the story of Grace, a young woman from a prominent family kept in an asylum not because she is insane but because of her pregnancy.
The beginning had a gothic and dark vibe to it. How Grace was being treated in the asylum could be a little violent but not to the point that I was put off but otherwise, intrigued. The storytelling was on point as well that it almost appears like a scene in a movie playing in my head.
But…
I have to admit that I was a tiny bit disappointed when the book turned out to be something different from what I was expecting. The cover did give me the impression that it was a paranormal/thriller/horror book. It does have the creepy vibe, doesn’t it? I mean, look at that hand on her feet, that was the first thing I noticed! So yeah, my spine-chilling expectation for this book was kind of high. But here’s how it went for me:
*Light spoilers ahead*
The story begins with Grace in an Asylum.
Me: Asylum? This is kind of eerie.
The story mentions Grace and “a growing life” in her belly.
Me: Is she gonna have a monster baby??
Things get violent in the Asylum. The baby dies. Grace gets locked up.
Me: Ohhh. So it’s not about a monster baby, hmm, what then is it about?
Thornhollow appears. He takes Grace with him in another asylum. Together they become the Sherlock-ing duo.
Me: Eh? What just happened to something spooky?
So then, the story shifted and became a mystery instead. And it’s not the guessing game kind of mystery that I typically love reading but something I’d call a “sit and read” type. There really isn’t much effort given for the readers to figure out the identity of the culprit since it’s not really the major plot (or is it?) of the book. Don’t get confused, the story did spend a lot of time revolving around the hunt for the mystery killer but after the mystery is solved, another plot thickens and it doesn’t have anything to do with what just happened but played a big part in terms of Grace’s sanity.
The transitions in the book did have a nice flow, it went a little plateau in the middle but how the different aspects were blended in the plot made me feel like I’m watching 3 different episodes of a series.
A Madness So Discreet, EP 01: The Asylum
A Madness So Discreet, EP 02: Sherlocking at Midnight
A Madness So Discreet, Finale: A Mad Revenge
Even though story was much different from my expectation, I still enjoyed reading this book. The vibrant characters did keep me from reading this story. Also, I’m gonna give some credits for the good storytelling.
Rating:

3h


whatiliked

  • Grace and Thornhollow – They have this dynamic I just can’t explain. They’re like pieces from 2 different puzzles that somehow fit together. They really complement each other and just them being together had a great influence on their own character development.
“This is where we’re different, Doctor,” Grace said quietly, her fingers tracing their chalk notes. “We both look upon things that no one should see and yet do not flinch. I see the blood and think of the person it’s leaving while your mind is only on the one who spilled it. My thoughts are on the people and yours the puzzle.      “And that is exactly why I need you.”
  • “Colorful” characters – The characters in this book aren’t the typical kind. Most of them are deemed insane for different reasons and I have to say they were the bright lights of this dark read.
  • The dialogues and banters – One thing I enjoyed in this book are the dialogues. I  did pick up quite a few and bookmarked some pages (which I rarely do when reading). Even though the whole book was written in the 3rd POV and set in 1890, the author’s writing style made it light and easy to read.

end
Book Description and Cover Image from Goodreads

Most Anticipated Reads | November 2015

november2015I can’t believe it’s November already and I’m here yet again to share the list of awesome books to be released this month that I’m dying to read!

Consent by Nancy Ohlin
Publication: November 10th 2015 by Simon Pulse

24853763Bea has a secret.

Actually, she has more than one. There’s her dream for the future that she can’t tell anyone—not her father and not even her best friend, Plum.

And now there’s Dane Rossi. Dane is hot, he shares Bea’s love of piano, and he believes in her.

He’s also Bea’s teacher.

When their passion for music crosses into passion for each other, Bea finds herself falling completely for Dane. She’s never felt so wanted, so understood, so known to her core. But the risk of discovery carries unexpected surprises that could shake Bea entirely. Bea must piece together what is and isn’t true about Dane, herself, and the most intense relationship she’s ever experienced.


The Anatomical Shape of a Heart by Jenn Bennet
Publication:  November 3rd 2015 by Feiwel & Friends

23310763Artist Beatrix Adams knows exactly how she’s spending the summer before her senior year. Determined to follow in Leonardo da Vinci’s footsteps, she’s ready to tackle the one thing that will give her an advantage in a museum-sponsored scholarship contest: drawing actual cadavers. But when she tries to sneak her way into the hospital’s Willed Body program and misses the last metro train home, she meets a boy who turns her summer plans upside down.

Jack is charming, wildly attractive . . . and possibly one of San Francisco’s most notorious graffiti artists. On midnight buses and city rooftops, Beatrix begins to see who Jack really is—and tries to uncover what he’s hiding that leaves him so wounded. But will these secrets come back to haunt him? Or will the skeletons in Beatrix’s own family’s closet tear them apart?


All the Major Constellations by Pratima Cranse
Publication: November 10th 2015 by Viking Books for Young Readers

24612035Laura Lettel is the most beautiful girl in the world. . . and Andrew’s not-so-secret infatuation.

Now he’s leaving high school behind and looking ahead to a fresh start at college and distance from his obsessive crush. But when a terrible accident leaves him without the companionship of his two best friends, Andrew is cast adrift and alone—until Laura unexpectedly offers him comfort, friendship, and the support of a youth group of true believers, fundamentalist Christians with problems and secrets of their own. Andrew is curiously drawn to their consuming beliefs, but why? Is it only to get closer to Laura? And is Laura genuinely interested in Andrew, or is she just trying to convert him?


Just Visiting by Dahlia Adler
Publication: November 17th 2015 by Spencer Hill Contemporary

25223115Reagan Forrester wants out—out of her trailer park, out of reach of her freeloading mother, and out of the shadow of the relationship that made her the pariah of Charytan, Kansas.

Victoria Reyes wants in—in to a fashion design program, in to the arms of a cute guy who doesn’t go to Charytan High, and in to a city where she won’t stand out for being Mexican.

One thing the polar-opposite best friends do agree on is that wherever they go, they’re staying together. But when they set off on a series of college visits at the start of their senior year, they quickly see that the future doesn’t look quite like they expected. After two years of near-solitude following the betrayal of the ex-boyfriend who broke her heart, Reagan falls hard and fast for a Battlestar Galactica-loving, brilliant smile-sporting pre-med prospective… only to learn she’s set herself up for heartbreak all over again. Meanwhile, Victoria runs full-speed toward all the things she thinks she wants… only to realize everything she’s looking for might be in the very place they’ve sworn to leave.

As both Reagan and Victoria struggle to learn who they are and what they want in the present, they discover just how much they don’t know about each other’s pasts. And when each learns what the other’s been hiding, they’ll have to decide whether their friendship has a future.


Hello? by Liza M. Wiemer
Publication: November 10th 2015 by Spencer Hill Contemporary

22663633One HELLO? can change a life. One HELLO? can save a life.

Tricia: A girl struggling to find her way after her beloved grandma’s death.
Emerson: A guy who lives his life to fulfill promises, real and hypothetical.
Angie: A girl with secrets she can only express through poetry.
Brenda: An actress and screenplay writer afraid to confront her past.
Brian: A potter who sets aside his life for Tricia, to the detriment of both.

Linked and transformed by one phone call, Hello? weaves together these five Wisconsin teens’ stories into a compelling narrative of friendship and family, loss and love, heartbreak and healing, serendipity, and ultimately hope.

Told from all five viewpoints: narration (Tricia), narration (Emerson), free verse poetry (Angie), screenplay format (Brenda), narration and drawings (Brian).


The Lies About Truth by Courtney C. Stevens
Publication: November 3rd 2015 by HarperTeen

24892774Sadie Kingston, is a girl living in the aftermath. A year after surviving a car accident that killed her friend Trent and left her body and face scarred, she can’t move forward. The only person who seems to understand her is Trent’s brother, Max.

As Sadie begins to fall for Max, she’s unsure if she is truly healed enough to be with him — even if Max is able to look at her scars and not shy away. But when the truth about the accident and subsequent events comes to light, Sadie has to decide if she can embrace the future or if she’ll always be trapped in the past.


For The Record by Charlotte Huang
Publication:  November 10th 2015 by Delacorte Press

25241527Chelsea thought she knew what being a rock star was like . . . until she became one. After losing a TV talent show, she slid back into small-town anonymity. But one phone call changed everything

Now she’s the lead singer of the band Melbourne, performing in sold-out clubs every night and living on a bus with three gorgeous and talented guys. The bummer is that the band barely tolerates her. And when teen hearthrob Lucas Rivers take an interest in her, Chelsea is suddenly famous, bringing Melbourne to the next level—not that they’re happy about that. Her feelings for Beckett, Melbourne’s bassist, are making life even more complicated.

Chelsea only has the summer tour to make the band—and their fans—love her. If she doesn’t, she’ll be back in Michigan for senior year, dying a slow death. The paparazzi, the haters, the grueling schedule . . . Chelsea believed she could handle it. But what if she can’t?


Until We Meet Again by Renee Collins
Publication: November 3rd 2015 by Sourcebooks Fire

23277959Cassandra craves drama and adventure, so the last thing she wants is to spend her summer marooned with her mother and stepfather in a snooty Massachusetts shore town. But when a dreamy stranger shows up on their private beach claiming it’s his own—and that the year is 1925—she is swept into a mystery a hundred years in the making.

As she searches for answers in the present, Cassandra discovers a truth that puts their growing love—and Lawrence’s life—into jeopardy. Desperate to save him, Cassandra must find a way to change history…or risk losing Lawrence forever.


Rules for 50/50 Chances by Kate McGovern
Publication: November 24th 2015 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

23296348Seventeen-year-old Rose Levenson has a decision to make: Does she want to know how she’s going to die? Because when Rose turns eighteen, she can take the test that will tell her if she carries the genetic mutation for Huntington’s disease, the degenerative condition that is slowly killing her mother. With a fifty-fifty shot at inheriting her family’s genetic curse, Rose is skeptical about pursuing anything that presumes she’ll live to be a healthy adult—including going to ballet school and the possibility of falling in love. But when she meets a boy from a similarly flawed genetic pool, and gets an audition for a dance scholarship in California, Rose begins to question her carefully-laid rules.

Undeniable by Liz Bankes
Publication: November 24th 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

23847994After Gabi’s relationship with her long-time boyfriend Max falls apart, she just needs to get away—and she finds the perfect escape in a summer internship for her favorite TV show in London. All the gorgeous actors in the cast will more than distract her from the Break-Up.

Then she meets Spencer Black: student, show extra, expert flirt. Spending time with him is fun, intoxicating, and uncertain. Their relationship is heating up when he lands a featured role on the show. Will his newly found fame break them apart, or is Spencer the one?


How to Be Brave by E. Katherine Kottaras
Publication: November 3rd 2015 by St. Martin’s Press

23368740Reeling from her mother’s death, Georgia has a choice: become lost in her own pain, or enjoy life right now, while she still can. She decides to start really living for the first time and makes a list of fifteen ways to be brave – all the things she’s wanted to do but never had the courage to try. As she begins doing the things she’s always been afraid to do – including pursuing her secret crush, she discovers that life doesn’t always go according to plan. Sometimes friendships fall apart and love breaks your heart. But once in a while, the right person shows up just when you need them most – and you learn that you’re stronger and braver than you ever imagined.

The Girl with the Wrong Name by Barnabas Miller
Publication: November 3rd 2015 by Soho Teen

24972562Seventeen-year-old Theo Lane has been hiding half of her face from the public ever since “The Night In Question,” a night that left her with a long, disfiguring scar, an unquiet mind, and no memory of what happened. An aspiring documentary maker, she uses her camera to keep the world at a safe distance, shooting hours of secret footage with a hidden button cam on her jacket collar. But when Andy Reese, a forlorn and mysterious “Lost Boy,” wanders into her frame, he becomes the unknowing star of her latest project. Her unhealthy obsession with him tears her from that sheltered life behind the camera, pulling her into a perilous, mind-bending journey through Andy’s world. But is it really Andy’s world she’s investigating? Or is it her own?

Everything But the Truth (If Only… #6) by Mandy Hubbard
Publication: November 17th 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

23848186Holly Mathews’ mom is the new manager of a ritzy retirement home, and they just moved in. But having super-rich retirees as her only neighbors isn’t a total bust, because the gorgeous, notorious Malik Buchannan is the grandson of a resident. Just one problem: when they meet, Malik assumes Holly is there to visit her own rich relative. She doesn’t correct him, and it probably doesn’t matter, because their flirtation could never turn into more than a superficial fling . . . right? But the longer she lives in his privileged world, the deeper Holly falls for Malik, and the harder it is to tell the truth . . . because coming clean might mean losing him.

Share your November TBR in the comments!
Thanks for stopping by!
Cover images link out to respective Goodreads page. Click and add them to your shelves. 😉
Book description and cover images from Goodreads

Blog Tour | Trust Me, I’m Trouble by Mary Elizabeth Summer [Book Review + Official Dream Cast + Giveaway]

Untitled-8Untitled-8Title: Trust Me, I’m Trouble
Author: Mary Elizabeth Summer
Publication: October 13th 2015 by Delacorte Press
Format: Advance Reading Copy
Source: Provided by the publisger via NetGalley
ISBN: 9780385744140

How Hard Can Love Be? (Normal, #2)


synopsisStaying out of trouble isn’t possible for Julep Dupree. She has managed not to get kicked out of her private school, even though everyone knows she’s responsible for taking down a human-trafficking mob boss—and getting St. Agatha’s golden-boy Tyler killed in the process. Running cons holds her guilty conscience at bay, but unfortunately, someone wants Julep to pay for her mistakes . . . with her life.
Against her better judgment, Julep takes a shady case that requires her to infiltrate a secretive organization that her long-gone mother and the enigmatic blue fairy may be connected to. Her best friend, Sam, isn’t around to stop her, and Dani, her one true confidante, happens to be a nineteen-year-old mob enforcer whose moral compass is as questionable as Julep’s. But there’s not much time to worry about right and wrong—or to save your falling heart—when there’s a contract on your head.
Murders, heists, secrets and lies, hit men and hidden identities . . . If Julep doesn’t watch her back, it’s her funeral. No lie.

review

I received a digital review copy of this book from Random House Children’s via NetGalley for my participation in the blog tour. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
OMG!!!!! WORDS MY CAN’T FIND I— Trust Me, I’m Trouble just put the series to a whole new level and I’m still hyped after reading it! More plot twists, more romance, more everything!
Months after the events from Trust Me, I’m Lying, we’re taken back to Julep’s world of grifting. With Sam gone to military school, Julep sets up a PI firm with Murphy as her minion. When a client walks in and asks her to investigate an organization called New World Initiatives, she is asked to be a find the “blue fairy”. Julep thinks coincidence doesn’t exist but the blue fairy seems to be related to her mother.
I have to say, this book is seriously unputdownable. Everything is interesting from the first page down to the last. Especially the last! But before I talk about that, let me talk about the plot first. Trust Me, I’m Trouble is a book with a thick layer of plot twists. A lot of surprises that I didn’t see coming, a lot of mystery that unravels itself in a way you wouldn’t expect and how everything seem connected is just wow. I really commend the author’s way of plotting how the whole story would go.
Then we have the characters, we’ve seen them in the first book but in TMIT, you get to see more. You can see Julep’s development from who she was in TMIL and who she is now. You can see her struggles and guilt which makes her more of a strong character. I also have to mention that the racially diverse characters are evident and I love that they have major roles in the story.
Another thing is the romance. It took a shift in a way I wasn’t expecting. At first when I noticed Julep acting “weird” I kind of sensed where it was headed and when it was confirmed that it took that direction, my heart broke a little *spoiler: highlight with cursor to view* for Sam but, I still found myself grinning whenever Julep can’t control her feels LOL.
And before I forget… that ending. Please, tell me there’s a third book. Is there? I NEED MORE!!!
I would honestly put this on my “Books I recommend” list and you should add it on your TBR, pronto.
Rating:

4


OFFICIAL DREAM CAST
(by Mary Elizabeth Summer)

dream cast ME

For me, dream casting my book is hugely difficult. I’m not one of those authors who has an actor in mind from the beginning and bases all descriptions off that person. I’m much more likely to troll Google images for a likely looking model. My Pinterest page for the Trust Me series gives a much better feel for how I see my characters.
I think I find it difficult to place actors into my stories, because I’m too hung up on the actors I see in TV and movies being the characters they portray. If I really like an actor, I probably really like the character they play, too, so the last thing I want to do is cut them out of that role and shoe-horn them into one of my characters. It kind of ruins the magic for me.
So of all the actors in the image above, I’ve only seen one of them act. Crystal Reed (the actress I picked for Julep) was amazing as Alison in Teen Wolf. She took a character I cared absolutely nothing about in the first season, and made her into a kickass, complicated hero I fell head over heels for. I’d love to see what she could do with Julep.
The other actors I honestly know nothing about, other than they look the part. The only tiny exception is that Mike is bald. So imagine Misha Collins without hair, and you’d get a pretty close approximation of Mike.
I’d also like to go on record as saying that I picked Ruby Rose for Dani years before Orange Is the New Black was ever even a show. So. Yeah. I saw her first. *narrows eyes*
I’m sure you all have your own ideas as to who could play the Trust Me characters. Let us know in the comments who you’d pick!

GIVEAWAY TIME!giveaway (4)
Win a SIGNED copy of Trust Me, I’m Trouble by Mary Elizabeth Summer!

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TRUST ME, I'M TROUBLE
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Book Review | Trust Me, I’m Lying by Mary Elizabeth Summer

17341550Title: Trust Me, I’m Lying
Author: Mary Elizabeth Summer
Publication: October 14th 2014 by Delacorte Press
Format: Hardback
Source: Finished copy provided the Author
ISBN: 9780385744065

How Hard Can Love Be? (Normal, #2)


 

synopsis

Julep Dupree tells lies. A lot of them. She’s a con artist, a master of disguise, and a sophomore at Chicago’s swanky St. Agatha High, where her father, an old-school grifter with a weakness for the ponies, sends her to so she can learn to mingle with the upper crust. For extra spending money Julep doesn’t rely on her dad—she runs petty scams for her classmates while dodging the dean of students and maintaining an A+ (okay, A-) average.
But when she comes home one day to a ransacked apartment and her father gone, Julep’s carefully laid plans for an expenses-paid golden ticket to Yale start to unravel. Even with help from St. Agatha’s resident Prince Charming, Tyler Richland, and her loyal hacker sidekick, Sam, Julep struggles to trace her dad’s trail of clues through a maze of creepy stalkers, hit attempts, family secrets, and worse, the threat of foster care. With everything she has at stake, Julep’s in way over her head . . . but that’s not going to stop her from using every trick in the book to find her dad before his mark finds her. Because that would be criminal.

 

reviewI received a finished copy of this book from Mary Elizabeth Summer in exchange for an honest review. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
One day, Julep comes home to discover that her apartment has been trashed and that her father is gone. As she rummages through what’s left of their apartment, she discovers that her father left her a message through a series of clues that she must decode to solve the mystery of his disappearance.
Trust Me, I’m Lying is a book that will never bore you. Every chapter is action-packed. I may or may not be talking about punching and kicking and gun shooting (maybe) but every page is just so dynamic! Not your thing? Worry not! TMIL will give you more!
First of all, we have Julep. She isn’t your typical YA heroine. Ok, maybe sometimes when it comes to the romance aspect but, her character pure charisma. A teen con artist extraordinaire? It may sound over the top especially with how she can manipulate almost everything but she just makes it natural and believable.
There is also an existing, uhm, wait, no. There was an existing romance in this book. *spoiler hint* It was kind of a love triangle actually. It was obvious from the start that Sam was into her best friend but Julep was more focused on breaking the law finding out what happened with her father but along the way, she meets Tyler who’s willing to risk anything just to help her.
I actually didn’t buy the romance between Tyler and Julep for one reason: I like Sam better!
I honestly would love to see Trust Me, I’m Lying in live action. The author’s writing was already very vivid. It was as if I get front seat tickets to what’s happening in the book especially the scenes that kept me on my toes.
This quick-paced read will surely entertain you. Make sure to read Trust Me, I’m, Lying and follow through the series. Yes, there’s a sequel!
Rating:

4


whatiliked

  • Julep – I’ve mentioned it before but I’m gonna say it again. Julep is not your typical MC. Her character is the type of character that is her own type. Do you know what I mean? Never mind. I just really like her character.
  • Title – If I get to ask the author one question, I’d ask her how she came up with this book’s witty title. I just love the paradox and it has great recall. It kept me in deep actually. LOL.
  • Unsolved Mysteries – There were still some questions left unanswered. I’m not really a fan of cliffhangers but;
  • There’s a sequel! – Trust Me, I’m Trouble comes out October 13, 2015!

end
Book description and cover image from Goodreads

 

Most Anticipated Reads | October 2015

oct2015

So many October book releases, so little time… and money!
I’ve been eyeing most of the book in this list since I can remember and some are newly discovered gems that I just had to add on this list!

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Publication: October 6th 2015 by St. Martin’s Griffin

23734628Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.

It’s a Wonderful Death by Sarah J. Schmitt
Publication: October 6th 2015 by Sky Pony Press

24693907Seventeen-year-old RJ always gets what she wants. So when her soul is accidentally collected by a distracted Grim Reaper, somebody in the afterlife better figure out a way to send her back from the dead or heads will roll. But in her quest for mortality, she becomes a pawn in a power struggle between an overzealous archangel and Death Himself. The tribunal presents her with two options: she can remain in the lobby, where souls wait to be processed, until her original lifeline expires, or she can replay three moments in her life in an effort to make choices that will result in a future deemed worthy of being saved. It sounds like a no-brainer. She’ll take a walk down memory lane. How hard can changing her future be?

But with each changing moment, RJ’s life begins to unravel, until this self-proclaimed queen bee is a social pariah. She begins to wonder if walking among the living is worth it if she has to spend the next sixty years as an outcast. Too quickly, RJ finds herself back in limbo, her time on Earth once again up for debate.

RJ is a snarky, unapologetic, almost unredeemable, very real girl. Her story is funny and moving, and teens will easily connect with her plight. Prepare to meet the Grim Reaper, who’s cuter than you’d expect; Hawaiian shirt–wearing Death Himself; Saint Peter (who likes to play Cornhole); and Al, the handler for the three-headed hound that guards the gates of Hell. This cast of characters accompanies RJ through her time in the afterlife and will do their best to gently shove her in the right direction.

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1) by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Publication: October 20th 2015 by Knopf Books for Young Readers

23395680This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.


A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis
Publication:  October 6th 2015 by Katherine Tegen Books

24376529Grace Mae knows madness.

She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.

When her voice returns in a burst of violence, Grace is banished to the dark cellars, where her mind is discovered by a visiting doctor who dabbles in the new study of criminal psychology. With her keen eyes and sharp memory, Grace will make the perfect assistant at crime scenes. Escaping from Boston to the safety of an ethical Ohio asylum, Grace finds friendship and hope, hints of a life she should have had. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who stalks young women. Grace, continuing to operate under the cloak of madness, must hunt a murderer while she confronts the demons in her own past.


Weird Girl and What’s His Name by Meagan Brothers
Publication: October 13th 2015 by Three Rooms Press

24694256In the tiny podunk town of Hawthorne, North Carolina, seventeen-year-old geeks Lula and Rory share everything—sci-fi and fantasy fandom, Friday night binge-watching of old X-Files episodes, and that feeling that they don’t quite fit in. Lula knows she and Rory have no secrets from each other; after all, he came out to her years ago, and she’s shared with him her “sacred texts”—the acting books her mother left behind after she walked out of Lula’s life. But then Lula discovers that Rory—her Rory, who maybe she’s secretly had feelings for—has not only tried out for the Hawthorne football team without telling her, but has also been having an affair with his middle-aged divorcee boss. With their friendship disrupted, Lula begins to question her identity and her own sexual orientation, and she runs away in the middle of the night on a journey to find her mother, who she hopes will have all the answers.

My Secret To Tell by Natalie D. Richards
Publication: October 6th 2015 by Sourcebooks Fire

24827938There was blood on his hands. Where was the guilt in his eyes?

Emmie’s had a crush on her best friend’s brother forever. Deacon is the town bad boy who’s always in trouble, but she sees his soft side when he volunteers with her at the local animal shelter. She doesn’t think he’s dangerous…until he shows up in her bedroom with blood on his hands.

Deacon’s father has been violently assaulted and Deacon is suspect number one. Emmie’s smart enough to know how this looks, but she also knows Deacon’s biggest secret—he’s paralyzed by the sight of blood. She’s sure he didn’t do this. Or did he? Because even Deacon’s own sister thinks he’s guilty…


Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul
Publication: October 27th 2015 by Balzer + Bray

18336982Mattie shouldn’t be at the bonfire. She should be finding new maps for her collection, hanging out with Kris, and steering clear of almost everyone else, especially Jolene. After all, Mattie and Kris dropped off the social scene the summer after sophomore year for a reason.

But now Mattie is a senior, and she’s sick of missing things. So here she is.

And there’s Jolene: Beautiful. Captivating. Just like the stories she wove. Mattie would know; she used to star in them. She and Jolene were best friends. Mattie has the scar on her palm to prove it, and Jolene has everything else, including Hudson.

But when Mattie runs into Hudson and gets a glimpse of what could have been, she decides to take it all back: the boyfriend, the friends, the life she was supposed to live. Problem is, Mattie can’t figure out where Jolene ends and she begins.

Because there’s something Mattie hasn’t told anyone—she walked away from Jolene over a year ago, but she never really left.


The Devil and Winnie Flynn by Micol Ostow & David Ostow
Publication: October 13th 2015 by Soho Teen

24836226Winnie Flynn doesn’t believe in ghosts. (Though she wouldn’t mind a visit from her mom, explaining why she took her own life.) When her mysterious aunt Maggie, a high-profile TV producer, recruits Winnie to spend a summer working as a production assistant on her current reality hit, Fantastic, Fearsome, she suddenly finds herself in the one place her mother would never go: New Jersey.

New Jersey’s famous Devil makes perfect fodder for Maggie’s show. But as the filming progresses, Winnie sees and hears things that make her think that the Devil might not be totally fake after all. Things that involve her and her family. Things about her mother’s death that might explain why she’s never met Aunt Maggie until now.

Winnie soon discovers her family’s history is deeply entwined with the Devil’s. If she’s going to make it out of the Pine Barrens alive, she might have to start believing in what her aunt is telling her. And, find out what she isn’t.


Trust Me, I’m Trouble (Trust Me #2) by Mary Elizabth Summer
Publication: October 13th 2015 by Delacorte Press

Untitled-8Staying out of trouble isn’t possible for Julep Dupree. She has managed not to get kicked out of her private school, even though everyone knows she’s responsible for taking down a human-trafficking mob boss—and getting St. Agatha’s golden-boy Tyler killed in the process. Running cons holds her guilty conscience at bay, but unfortunately, someone wants Julep to pay for her mistakes . . . with her life.

Against her better judgment, Julep takes a shady case that requires her to infiltrate a secretive organization that her long-gone mother and the enigmatic blue fairy may be connected to. Her best friend, Sam, isn’t around to stop her, and Dani, her one true confidante, happens to be a nineteen-year-old mob enforcer whose moral compass is as questionable as Julep’s. But there’s not much time to worry about right and wrong—or to save your falling heart—when there’s a contract on your head.

Murders, heists, secrets and lies, hit men and hidden identities . . . If Julep doesn’t watch her back, it’s her funeral. No lie.


Red Girl, Blue Boy (If Only… #5) by Lauren Baratz-Logsted
Publication: October 20th 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

23848094Sixteen-year-old Katie and Drew really shouldn’t get along. After all, her father is the Republican nominee for President of the United States while his mother is at the top of the Democratic ticket. But when Katie and Drew are thrown together in a joint interview on a morning talk show, they can’t ignore the chemistry between them. With an entire nation tuned into and taking sides in your parents’ fight, and the knowledge that—ultimately—someone has to lose, how can you fall in love with the one person you’re supposed to hate?

A Step Toward Falling by Cammi McGovern
Publication: October 6th 2015 by HarperTeen

24605853Emily has always been the kind of girl who tries to do the right thing—until one night when she does the worst thing possible. She sees Belinda, a classmate with developmental disabilities, being attacked. Inexplicably, she does nothing at all.

Belinda, however, manages to save herself. When their high school finds out what happened, Emily and Lucas, a football player who was also there that night, are required to perform community service at a center for disabled people. Soon, Lucas and Emily begin to feel like maybe they’re starting to make a real difference. Like they would be able to do the right thing if they could do that night all over again. But can they do anything that will actually help the one person they hurt the most?


Diamonds are Forever (The Secret Diamond Sisters #3) by Michelle Madow
Publication: October 27th 2015 by Harlequin Teen

23168396It’s cold outside, but the drama is hot!

The Diamond sisters jet to the mountains for spring break, and Savannah’s flirt-mance with an international pop star heats up as her pursuit of stardom succeeds. But is this romance meant to be, or has the right guy been in front of her all along? Meanwhile, Courtney takes the next step with her secret boyfriend—and future stepbrother—and as their parents’ wedding approaches, the pressure’s on to reveal their relationship.

Peyton’s figuring out a plan for her future, but she still feels guilty about getting her former bodyguard fired and wonders if she can get over him in the arms of someone else. But the biggest bombshell will change everything once again, because Madison’s ready to tell the huge secret she’s uncovered. And with the boy who betrayed her but who could be the love of her life fighting for his own life, she might need the Diamond sisters more than ever.


Share your October book recommendations in the comments!
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