Posted in Kaite Kavinsky, YA

ARC: Still Point (#3) – Katie Kacvinsky

17393016Synopsis

In the final installment to the trilogy begun with “Awaken, ” Maddie returns home to make her final stand against Digital School, and uncovers deeply guarded secrets about her family an new truths about herself.

5 out of 5 Stars

2012 review of Awaken
2013 review of Middle Ground

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My Review

 

 Parents show you life is a paved road. Friends show you the road isn’t there yet, its waiting for you to carve it out. Parents show you life is a handbook, with rules set in place. Friends show you how to break the rules you’re handed.

*ARC from the publishers via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

I first read Awaken back in 2012. I was captivated by this dystopian novel because it spoke truth. It’s about a digital era where everyone hides behind a computer, too afriad to go outside and converse face-to-face. And it got me thinking about right now. How we are all attached to our phones and computers and anything else that is digital and means you don’t have to speak to anyone in person. I used to look around the train station on the way to work and count how many were on their phones. It was nearly everyone, including myself. And I think that’s why I became attached to this series, that and because it is amazing. It has so much depth into the storyline, it evolves at every turn and you become fascinated about the characters, the digitalisation of everything, of where Katie is going to take you.

I’m not one for reading YA. It takes my fancy every now and again but this is one series I pined over. For each book released, I have been anxious for them to release so I can get my next fix of Justin and Maddie, the next chapter in the Digital world and how everything will or wont play out.

Still Point is the third and final book in the Awaken and holy crap, it’s full of twists and shocks. I cant even give you a brief overview without spoiling the story, Let’s just say, it shocked me; I was not expecting anything of what happened, to happen in book three!

After the slight cliffy in Middle Ground, I was waiting to see what Maddie was going to do. And although her decision is one I didn’t think would happen, I was proud of her for doing it. She has always been up against her father, fighting against his creation since she was fifteen and she wants to destroy the digital world, wanting people to actually talk face-to-face, go to school in a classroom, and just spend time together without a computer screen in front of them.

I was proud of her for pushing and seeing it through. Although my heart pained when you could see her dilemma about her dad, about Justin, about her feelings, about how she just didn’t know what to do anymore. I felt so sorry for her, because Justin is obsessed with taking down the digital world and yes, Maddie wants it too, but she wants to be at the top of the list, not third or forth and you could see it did effect her to be pushed down the list. You watch her fight against herself, dig deep into her soul and watch her see exactly what she really wants; from herself and from her life. And yes, I was just a little bit shocked at her choice but you know what, I could definitely see it. And I really want to write more about that, but I cant. It will spoil it all so I will just smile to myself and mentally high-five Maddie for taking charge of her life and making the right choice – for her!

Also the tattoo makes an awful lot of sense now. I have read Maddie’s tattoo, the short novella about how she got her tattoo and how it came about. We also meet the guy who designed it, Jax and he is swoon worthy. I really liked him. And that’s all I am saying on him haha. You need to find out about him throughout this book. It was a push and pull situation and I was in the middle not knowing what to do.

Justin’s whole life is taking down the DS (Digital Schools) and DC’s (Detention centers). It goes 1) Destroying DS 2) Maddie and although I completely love Justin; he’s passionate and determined and completely focused on the plan at hand, DS would always be his number one, no matter how much he wants to be with Maddie. And picking and choosing is a hard decision, when your heart wants both.

I loved how selfless he was at the end though. How he actually put Maddie’s feelings first for once. He wanted to see her happy and not sad and broken over him and I felt proud of him for doing what he did, even if I wasn’t expecting it. He has gone through so much in his life – with fighting against DS, recruiting members and then falling for Maddie but when the time came, her happiness definitely meant more to him and although I was shocked at how it ended, it was kind of perfect for Justin too. He got what he had always wanted and he fought the hard way to get there but he deserved it after the hard work he has put in year after year.

I would love to see a little novella about him, Katie. Hint hint;) I think it would be amazing to see him after Still Point or even before Awaken, how he began to be so passionate about taking down the DS and finding Maddie. To be honest, I am being greedy and want more Justin haha.

There are a lot of twists and turns throughout Still Point – many had me gasping and eyes wide open. I was not expecting any of the things to happen. And I love that! I loved that everything I thought I knew during the first two books, just completely messed me over and it wasn’t all that it seemed. But it completely made sense, and I trusted that Katie knew what she were doing and it worked! I also was not expecting that ending. Not after everything that happened in Awaken and Middle Ground. But as I said, it made sense. And I really want to blab about what happened, but I know I cant. I need someone else to read this book so I can talk about it because, man, I NEED to talk about it. I need to know someone else was like “Oh holy crap” and “Oh holy crap, I cant believe Justin did that, but bless him.” SEE, I’m being vague, but you will understand when you get the chance to read this book.

If you haven’t had the chance to get acquainted with this series, I demand that you do. It is one of my favourite dystopian series because, really, it could happen.

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Posted in Book Tours, YA

BOOK TOUR: Freaks – Lisa M. Forester

FREAKS blog tour banner
Check out my 5 STAR review!!

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freaks book front coverSynopsis

Nobody’s perfect… or are they?

Abigail always knew that she was different, but what she didn’t know was just how different.

That was until her 16th birthday, when her parent’s revealed a devastating secret that confirmed her worst fears and changed her life forever.

Abigail is an Allelobrid: one of five children born as a result of their parents illegal science experiment in genetic engineering. The aim: to create a perfect human.

Yet perfection comes at a price.

Forced into a life on the run, Abigail finds love, danger and an organisation that will stop at nothing to get what they want.

When lives are at risk and freedom is threatened – could being perfect be enough to survive?

5 out of 5 stars!

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My Review

Firstly, I would like to say what an awesome debut Freaks is. Seriously now, I was hooked right from the start. The synopsis is enough to make me want to read the book and it really is a page turner, I didn’t want to put it down and I wouldn’t have if I didn’t have to go to that thing called work. It was all I thought about, and I couldn’t wait to leave work and curl up in bed to finish off Abigail’s story.

Lisa has included everything I love in a book. A great story line packed of adventure and action and of course, a bit of romance thrown into it for good measure. I hardly ever read YA, no less Sci-Fi YA, but I was so glad to put now my smutty books and indulged in Freaks. It’s the perfect spice to add to the mixture of leaving begin NA for a little while.

For a debut, in my opinion, Lisa has it spot-on. Her characters all have their own personality, they all shine in their own ways and of course, that is what you expect from a story, and you cant help but love and hate the characters you are ‘supposed’ to. The story develops each time you turn a page and as I told you, I was hooked, wanting to know who the other Allelobrids or as Abbie calls them ‘Freaks’ were, where they were from, why they had to go on the run and when you get to these scenes, you want to know how their lives are going to turn out – will they have to keep on running or be out of danger at last from the people who want them. Well, you’ll have to wait and see, but there is a book two coming out! THANK GOD because that ending killed me.

Freaks is about, well five freaks. Abigail is a super ‘human’, her parents designed her to never get ill, to be super smart, to be athletic…basically the perfect ‘human being.’ On her 16th birthday, her parents tell her the truth about herself, that she was illegally made in America, made to perfection but now they are in hiding as the head of the experiment wants to kidnap all five of them to perform experiments on them. So they fled.

Abigail goes in search of what ‘Allelobrids’ are but despite how smart she is, she’s made one mistake. One email turns to conversations and finding the other three Allelobrids but what starts out as wanting to know who and where the others are, ends up with her running away to save someone, which in turn puts herself and others in danger. Along the way, she faces danger, meets the other Allelobrids and finds love with Max, another Allelobrid. What starts out as an adventure, may end in disaster.

I really really liked Abbie. Not one for friends, she just exists in school. People leave her alone and her only friend is gay…he just hasn’t told her yet. After finding out all about herself and finding the others, she feels inadequate to them – they are all modified to be gorgeous, to look like supermodels and Abbie feels average but that is what makes her special…especially to Max who would rather be average than supermodelly. Abbie is spunky and strong willed but she doesn’t give herself credit to this part of her. It’s cut off but when faced with danger, she puts herself forward to be the one in charge of the three of them, she risks her life to save Dylan – the last Allelobrid who is in captive and walks straight into the factory where he and the person who wants them, is situated.

You watch Abbie grow, you watch her come out of her shell, take charge – something she would never do – watch her risk her life for the other guys and of course, watch her fall for Max. Their friendship / relationship was so cute to read and watch unfold. From being the first two to find each other, the first ones to meet and then to go in a limbo of their feelings coming out, you could see that Max adores Abbie, that he wanted to be the one to risk his life for them, but Abbie stood her ground and how Max and Abbie fell asleep holding hands…oh god, my heart was bursting for them.

The action was constantly there, the fear but courage of Abbie was admirable, the way she communicated with Dylan and let him know that he was going to be saved and safe, along with his parents warmed my heart and how they all stuck together to help him, making plans to get Dylan and his parents out, how to get rid of the bad guy and not live in fear anymore. But nothing is ever simple….

I, for one, really enjoyed Freaks. For a first novel, it is one that should be given a read and if you are like me and just read the same genre, its refreshing to read another genre and I was glad this was another YA book that I loved.

Please give me Book two soon though Lisa…I NEED to know what in the hell is going to happen after an ending like THAT!

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8814ecbda3940de90f27ae5ba578a93dAbout Lisa

Lisa M Forester is the author of ‘Freaks’ – a Young Adult fiction novel that is due to be released on the 28th November 2013.

She has lived on a diet of books since she was six (when she was handed an Enid Blyton story for the very first time) and she constantly lives in hope that reading will become an Olympic sport. After being inspired to write by the plethora of amazing YA writers that exist across the globe, she put pen to paper and produced ‘Freaks’ – which I am sure she would very much love you to read.

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Contact Lisa

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7265813.Lisa_M_Forester

Twitter: @lisamforester

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Buy Freaks

Amazon || Amazon UK

Posted in Cover Reveal, YA

COVER REVEAL: Freaks – Lisa M. Forester

freaks book front coverTITLE: Freaks
AUTHOR: Lisa M. Forester
GENRE: Young Adult
RELEASE DATE: 28th November 2013
Cover designed by Steven Honey
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SYNOPSIS:

Nobody’s perfect… or are they?

Abigail always knew that she was different, but what she didn’t know was just how different.

That was until her 16th birthday, when her parent’s revealed a devastating secret that confirmed her worst fears and changed her life forever.

Abigail is an Allelobrid: one of five children born as a result of their parents illegal science experiment in genetic engineering. The aim: to create a perfect child.

Yet perfection comes at a price.

Forced into a life on the run, Abigail finds love, danger and an organisation that will stop at nothing to get what they want.

When lives are at risk and freedom is threatened – could being perfect be enough to survive?

AUTHOR BIO:

Lisa M. Forester is a Young Adult fiction author living in the North West of England and her debut novel ‘Freaks’ is due for release on the 26th of November 2013.

She has lived on a diet of books since she was six (when she was handed an Enid Blyton story for the very first time) and she constantly lives in hope that reading will become an Olympic sport. After being inspired to write by the plethora of amazing YA writers that exist across the globe, she put pen to paper and produced ‘Freaks’ – which I am sure she would very much love you to read!

AUTHOR LINKS:

http://www.goodreads.com/LisaMForester
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18484653-freaks
http://lisamforester.wix.com/books
@lisamforester

Posted in L.M Augustine, Promotional Events, YA

Click To Subscribe – L.M Augustine (+ GIVEAWAY)

17285743Synopsis

1,135,789. That’s how many subscribers sixteen-year-old West Ryder has on his web vlog series. But he only has eyes for one of them.

As one of the internet’s most prestigious video bloggers, West talks about high school relationships under the name “Sam Green.” As far as he knows, no one from school, not even his best friend, Cat, has seen his videos. But the highlight of the whole thing is Harper Knight, who comments every day at exactly 2:02 in the afternoon. He doesn’t know anything about her aside from the occasional deep philosophical messaging on why pizza tastes so delicious, but as stupid as it sounds, he might be falling for her. So when they finally agree to meet in real life, West’s hope for romance seems more and more in reach. But that all changes as soon as he arrives at their meeting spot and sees Cat walking toward him, wearing the same “I ❤ Sam Green” T-shirt Harper promised she’d have on.

To his alarm, West realizes he is falling in love with the best friend who has always been a sister to him.

4/5 stars

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My Review

So it’s L.M Augustine week on The Book Lovers and today is review daaaaaaay!

I had heard of Click To Subscribe through the twitter grapevine and when L.M followed me, I checked out his blog and HELLO CHAPTER ONE. From then on, I was so excited to get this book on my kindle that when it was released and L.M Dm’d me about it, it was an instant download.

I actually read Click a few weeks ago but I have been so rubbish at my reviews that it’s taken me this long to write it, but alas, I write everything down so it’s been easy to type and remember everything that I loved from the book!!

From the synopsis, I knew it would be a great read. I love anything to do with technology in books, so when I saw ‘Vlog’ I knew this was a book that needed to be read by me. Nowadays I hardly read YA, but L.M’s synopsis drew me in and how glad am I that I actually read Click to Subscribe?! It’s such a great read, it’s a refreshing storyline and one that I bloody well-loved reading about.

Best friends to lovers? YES PLEASE!! They are one of my favourite storylines yet there is so much included within the storyline that you wonder if they ever will get together.  If they really should be together (they should, I was definitely rooting for them) and if they would eventually get together, and that West would realize they are perfect for each other.

L.M Augustine has included everything in Click. There is hilarious banter between Cat/Harper and West, loveable moments, awkward moments, moments where your heart is aching, where you will cry, where you will laugh and moments where you will be smiling so big that you will feel giddy about what you are reading.

The past 6 months havent been the greatest for West. He’s lost his mother, his father is a douchebag and the only friend he has that he can count on is Cat. He vlogs as a way to feel closer to his mother and one day, someone named Harper comments on his video and from then on they form this close bond.

West is such a freaking great character. He’s witty, can give awesome banter back. He’s adorable and he’s dealing with the pain of losing his mother. He’s also in love with a girl he’s never met. How is that for confusion for him?! He’s hurting, and he;s trying to deal with it the best way he can…by vlogging for his mother. Thinking it’s her he’s speaking to. He would actually be completely lost without Cat, his best friend.

We see bantersaurous-rexing between him and Cat and he and Harper and you will fall in love that extra bit with West because of it. But there will be times when you just want to hit him around the head, especially after Cat declares her feelings. He just stares at her, leaving the atmosphere awkward and in turn, you feel awkward because its such a predicament to be in.

Despite his reservations in wanting to know Cat’s feelings for him, we see him think things through. Although it takes a while, we see him confused and scared and angry and upset that he doesn’t have anyone to talk to about Cats feelings and his feelings that are slowly moving to the surface. You wish you were the one to help him through it all. But he gets there in the end. You see him figure out that he loves Cat and he starts to see her differently. although he’s scared, we know that he and Cat are awesome together and nothing will stop the love they have for one another.

I really, really loved Cat. Seriously. I think it was due to the fact that I saw myself in her. How she plucked up the courage to tell West she was in love with him, to never give up on him no matter how hard it became. This was me a few years ago with my best friend. She was the ultimate bad ass but caring best friend and I LOVED her character. I love the fact that although she was knocked back by West, she never, ever gave up on her feelings for him. I completely admired this about her. Normally YA girls aren’t the strongest (unless I’m reading the wrong books), but Cat blew me away. I wanted to be her friend, tell her to keep expressing her feelings for West because deep down, he had to have feelings for her!!! She acted like Harper and if he loved Harper, then he loved Cat too.

She is a brilliant character and even at 16, she knew exactly what her feelings were, that she wanted to be with West and despite the hurt she was put through, her feelings never wavered and she never gave up proving that she is the right girl for West. I applaud her confidence!

You can see the chemistry between Cat and West. Being best friends since they were younger, you kind of have to have chemistry and as they have grown up, you can see it more clearly. At least i could. Despite the fact they are BBF’s, they really do love one another. They are there for each other, especially Cat during the months after West’s mother had died, which was only a few months back. She supports him, she comforts him and you can really see how much she cares for him. There is no wonder that she is in love with him.

West is just too blind to see what is in front of him and at times to just want to smack him around the head and be like “YOU LOVE HARPER WHO IS CAT SO YOU LOVE CAT!” but i could see why he was reserved about it. It obviously had to take time for him to see Cat as more than a friend. In his own time too. To get his head around the fact that Harper doesn’t exist and it is in fact Cat after all the months.

The scene I loved was the ice cream scene. These two are utterly obsessed with ice cream and just reading their banter and their race to who finishes the ice cream first had me in fits of giggles. I am so going to do this with my friends (They probably wouldn’t be up for it but i;ll force them.) You can see how much fun these two have together and it was refreshing to watch  West just have a time out from grieving and be the 16 year old boy that he is.

If you have yet to pick up your copy of Click To Subscribe, please do. You wont be disappointed and for a debut novel, L.M Augustine has written a fantastic book. Like technology in books? Like best friends to lovers? like banter and awkward teenage moments? THEN this is the book for you 😀

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About L.M Augustine

L.M. Augustine is a YA romance author who is obsessed with writing about dorky teenagers, love, and happy endings. He currently lives in New England, where he spends far too much time reading books and screaming at his computer, and he believes that the solution to the world’s problems can be found in chocolate cake. Click To Subscribe is his first novel, but it won’t be his last.
Find L.M. on:

Email: authoraugustine@gmail.com

Links to buy Click To Subscribe (Which ya’ll should!)

(And all other Amazon stores)

iBooks
Smashwords

GIVEAWAAAAAAAAAAAY

And now for your chance to win TWO Ecopies of Click To Subscribe. It’s open internationally, so good luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Posted in Guest Reviews, YA

GUEST REVIEW: Storm (The Elemental Series #1) – Brigid Kemmerer

10401084Synopsis

Becca Chandler is suddenly getting all the guys all the ones she doesn’t want. Ever since her ex-boyfriend spread those lies about her. Then she saves Chris Merrick from a beating in the school parking lot. Chris is different. Way different: he can control water just like his brothers can control fire, wind, and earth. They’re powerful. Dangerous. Marked for death.

And now that she knows the truth, so is Becca.

Secrets are hard to keep when your life’s at stake. When Hunter, the mysterious new kid around school, turns up with a talent for being in the wrong place at the right time, Becca thinks she can trust him. But then Hunter goes head-to-head with Chris, and Becca wonders who’s hiding the most dangerous truth of all.

The storm is coming.

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Review by Natasha Bowyer

Storm is the first full length novel in the Brigid Kemmerer’s Elemental series, and boy is it so much more than it says on the front cover. A fact which I truly love.

When The Book Lover’s requested guest book reviews, it was the first book I thought of; why? Because it is just so ridiculously awesome I struggle to put it into words. It was the last book that I had to read three times in a row (without taking a break) and it was the last book I read which I thought about for a long time after.

I picked up the novel thinking it was going to be a quick paranormal romance that I could just whizz through in a couple of sittings, oh how wrong could I be. Firstly it is not paranormal; it is something far more fundamental then that and has a subject matter which leaves you with a small voice in the back of your mind weighing up the odds of whether it could actually happen. I am talking basics – Earth, Wind, Fire and Water i.e. the Elements.  Secondly the quality of writing far outweighs it from other books in the similar YA/NA category. It is fast, it is deep, it is gritty, it touches on subjects that push the boundaries on what is normally considered safe for the genre and target audience, the dialogue is sharp and witty, it uses adult language (good grief teenagers who swear who would have thought of such a thing?!) And it has sarcasm by the bucket load – bet you’d never guess I am huge fan of sarcasm.

More importantly than all the above it is a romance that is so painfully realistic in its portrayal that by the end of the novel you can’t help but sit there and grin like a lunatic as you find out just how it is going to end.

I am not going to deny that the serious smattering of outrageously hot guys did little deter me from the major book crush that developed during my obsessive reading of the novel. The Merrick brothers have well and truly won me over and I live in vain hope that one day I may get stuck in a storm with at least one of them, my preference would be for Chris our leading man in this series instalment.

Told from two points of view this is the tale of Chris and Becca and oh my is it a good one.

Becca Chandler has problems, and they are evident from the first page, the reader does not know that shape or form that they take but finding our main protagonist at a self defense class can only be an opening to a major plot line – which as it turns out ends on the heart rate inducing side of the drama scale.

Becca’s problems only get worse when she interrupts Chris Merrick being beaten up by a couple of menacing youths. Making a split second decision she steps in to help and manages to save Chris from the pummelling and gets him home to his house where we are introduced to the rest of the parentless Merrick brothers, First there is hot but grouchy Michael, then there is hot but short tempered Gabriel, and then hot and kind Nick – do you see where I am going with this?! They all think Becca knows something, which she doesn’t and well neither do we. These boys are paranoid, mistrustful and outright rude and bad mannered which adds the suspense and mystery that Kemmerer starts to build from the very first pages.  The Merrick’s have a secret one that has torn through their family and they don’t want anyone knowing about it.

From the moment we glimpse inside Chris’ head it is acutely clear that Chris has a thing for Becca – or Becky as he likes to call her just to wind her up – and it is in this fact alone that Brigid Kemmerer completely had me over a drooling barrel of chrushness. She completely gets writing from a guy’s perspective, and from being inside Chris’ mind you get to see all the thoughts and feelings which he has but does not show on the surface. What he says and what he does are two completely different things, as the reader in the know you can’t help but enjoy the privileged position that you are in.  At the point in the novel where Chris thinks he has lost in the battle for Becca’s attentions you can’t help but feel the pain of the guy, it  is all there in his thoughts but you watch him acting out with the cool indifference of a teenager and it makes it all the more poignant.

I don’t want to give away too much of the plot, because I truly can’t ask you enough to read it for yourself, you won’t regret, it but let me just give you a little low down without any spoilers.

There is an amazing support cast, not only the (hot) brothers, but Becca’s best friend Quinn plays a role, there is the arrival of the mysterious and aloof boy with the tattoo’s – Hunter who takes an instant liking to Becca much to Chris’ concern, there is Becca’s Dad who pitches up at a strange time and then there are the baddies who are quite frankly menacing.

The story line itself is complex and clever. Becca has a rep and you feel you kind of know why but it is never spelt out for you. Everyone talks about her but she just ignores it and carries on with everything. When you find out exactly what happened to start the rumour mill churning it makes you have to re-read it just to make sure you got it right the first time, especially when it becomes clear that it is going to happen again.

It is a story about family bonds and that even the most dysfunctional family have emotions that tie them together one way or another.

It is a story about regret and remorse and how you live with it.

It is a story about facing your demons and defeating them.

And most importantly it is about accepting someone into your life and setting out to save them no matter what the cost.

Read it. You won’t be sorry you did.

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Natasha has a book out in the Fall under the name ‘Anna Bloom’ which is titled ‘The Uni File – Year One: The Art of Letting Go.’
The synopsis of the book goes as follows:

Lilah McCannon is determined to prevent history from repeating itself.  Already well on her way to reliving her mother’s life as a bored upper class housewife—privileged, yet still somehow pathetic—Lilah shocks her parents and her fiancé with an abrupt change in course:  enrolment at Roehampton University.  Although it’s not quite the institution she would have hoped for, it is the only one to accept a desperate application from a young woman in the throes of a mid-twenties breakdown.

Lilah’s diary the “Uni File” follows Lilah’s pursuits throughout the academic year and chronicles her search for independence and identity, her connection with young and charismatic roommates, and her attempts to abide by a set of self-imposed rules, each of which is broken in one hilarious fashion after the next.

When Lilah catches the eye of the lead singer of a popular local band, he forces her hand on her “No Boys” rule.  Romance and true soul searching ensue, as do a string of comically embarrassing episodes and poignant encounters with family, friends and fellow students as Lilah studies “The Art of Letting Go.”

You can find Natasha at:-
http://annabloomwrites.com/
Twitter – @Annabloombooks

Posted in Erotica, New Adult, Romance, YA

My top 10 books of 2012

Seeing as it’s nearing the end of 2012 and it’s been a great year for new books and authors, I thought I would write my top ten books that I have thoroughly loved this this. They are in no particular order.

  1. Down To You – M. Leighton
  2. Such a Rush – Jennifer Echols
  3. Leave Me Breathless – Cherrie Lynn
  4. What I Didn’t Say – Keary Taylor
  5. From Rags – Suzanne Wright
  6. The Secret of Ella and Micha – Jessica Sorensen
  7. Wallbanger – Alice Clayton
  8. The Edge of Never – J.A Redmerski
  9. Everything But – Jade C. Jamison
  10. Crash – Nicole Williams

I need to add a NUMBER 11. I read this before the end of 2012 and it was AMAZING! So I’m adding On Dublin Street – Samantha Young.

So what have been some of your favourite books this year? Any of mine that would be in your list?

Posted in Romance, YA

Bound Together – Eliza Jane

Synopsis

Seventeen-year-old Zoey needs an escape from some personal drama, like her mom’s depression and taking care of her four younger siblings. She finds the perfect distraction in a frenemies-with-benefits arrangement with irritatingly hot football captain, Matt, during their class trip to Paris. There’s no chance of falling for someone whose only ambition in life is to stay in their hick town and one day take over his parent’s tire store. But far from home and personal responsibilities, his cocky grin and easy attitude start to grow on her as they explore the seductive city of Paris together.

Once they’re back at home, Zoey finds herself texting him for a secret rendezvous whenever she needs an escape. Though she’s been explicitly clear she’s using him for one thing, whenever Matt picks her up, he acts more like it’s a date-date rather than a backseat playdate –making sure she has eaten, or stopping to color with her little sister before they go out. Despite her best efforts at keeping their arrangement physical only, Zoey begins to realize – with fear and disgust – that she’s falling for him. When things fall apart with her mom, letting Matt see her real life takes more courage than she has – but if she’s brave enough to let him, he might be just the one person who can help.

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My Review

Zoe doesn’t lead a normal lifestyle. With a dad that works all the time, a depressed mother and four young siblings, she’s more of a mother to them than a sister as she does everything for them. At the end of the day, she is absolutely knackered and that’s why she can’t wait to go to Paris, to see how they cope without her at home.

Matt is the popular jock, the captain of the football team, he’s rich, had a popular girlfriend, whom he dumps and goes to all the parties. Thing is he’s faking being happy but feels like he has to keep up this cheery persona around everyone; at home and at school.

Zoey and Matt are both hiding behind a facade. They both have things happening in their life’s that they don’t want anyone to know about and that’s why Paris is an escape for them both.

They both get partnered up on the trip to Paris, to do an assignment together and Zoey isn’t happy about it at all. Zoey is a goth girl, more into keeping to herself and Matt is a popular jock, known by everyone. They have nothing in common. But in Paris they both get to know each other and they both feel at ease being together; they don’t have to act fake.

Sticking together throughout the trip, they form their own little bubble; just the two of them. They both feel something spending time together, hence the frenemies-with-benefits, but they know everything must return to how it was before Paris when they fly home.

Except things don’t change, minus Zoey trying to ignore Matt when they get back, he slowly worms his way into her life, no matter how much she tries to stop it. She doesn’t want to fall in love with someone who wants to stay in their town, when she wants to get far away.

So they make a deal. Secret meetups to hook up and when Zoey wants to stop it, Matt tells her they can have one phone call each then they can stop all contact. Can they really stay away from each other though?

I loved both the characters of Matt and Zoey. They seemed so different yet so in tune with one another. Matt suffers from migraines and Zoey turns into mother mode to help him out whereas Matt is so kind and lovely to her siblings, even going as far to help her mother out.

It was a breath of fresh air to see someone like Matt admitting he doesn’t want the popular status that he has to keep up, trying to be happy when he’s clearly not and it doesn’t feel like him at all.

Zoey doesn’t like anyone seeing the real her – someone who keeps the family running – so it takes courage for her to let Matt see that side of her, especially as he witnesses it firsthand. But she accepts his help even though she wants to be the strong one.

They both show their weak sides to one another, Matt with the migraines and telling Zoey about his brother’s death and Zoey with her family. It was really nice to read them help each other out and be tormented over their feelings for one another, finally succumbing to them later on.

The only problem was the ending. I felt that Eliza could have added a few more chapters to their journey but then maybe it was the perfect way to end it. Other than that, I did enjoy this book. It gave me a few laughs in places and a few gasps and squeals. All in all, a great read to pass the day.

Posted in Romance, YA

Such A Rush – Jennifer Echols

Synopsis

When I was fourteen, I made a decision. If I was doomed to live in a trailer park next to an airport, I could complain about the smell of the jet fuel like my mom, I could drink myself to death over the noise like everybody else, or I could learn to fly.

Heaven Beach, South Carolina, is anything but, if you live at the low-rent end of town. All her life, Leah Jones has been the grown-up in her family, while her mother moves from boyfriend to boyfriend, letting any available money slip out of her hands. At school, they may diss Leah as trash, but she’s the one who negotiates with the landlord when the rent’s not paid. At fourteen, she’s the one who gets a job at the nearby airstrip.

But there’s one way Leah can escape reality. Saving every penny she can, she begs quiet Mr. Hall, who runs an aerial banner-advertising business at the airstrip and also offers flight lessons, to take her up just once. Leaving the trailer park far beneath her and swooping out over the sea is a rush greater than anything she’s ever experienced, and when Mr. Hall offers to give her cut-rate flight lessons, she feels ready to touch the sky.

By the time she’s a high school senior, Leah has become a good enough pilot that Mr. Hall offers her a job flying a banner plane. It seems like a dream come true . . . but turns out to be just as fleeting as any dream. Mr. Hall dies suddenly, leaving everything he owned in the hands of his teenage sons: golden boy Alec and adrenaline junkie Grayson. And they’re determined to keep the banner planes flying.

Though Leah has crushed on Grayson for years, she’s leery of getting involved in what now seems like a doomed business—until Grayson betrays her by digging up her most damning secret. Holding it over her head, he forces her to fly for secret reasons of his own, reasons involving Alec. Now Leah finds herself drawn into a battle between brothers—and the consequences could be deadly.

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My Review

Leah Jones has moved from town to town, trailer to trailer all her life due to her mother always moving them when her boyfriends tell her there is a job for her and now she is finally living in Heaven Beach, in a trailer park next to a small commercial airport.

Leah, at 14, gets picked on at school and her only escape is her job at the airstrip, working for Mr. Hall at his banner advertising business. She can only do office work but it’s her dream to fly an airplane, so when she has saved enough money from her wages, she forges her mums signature and hands it over to Mr Hall, in exchange for a flying lesson. And so it starts.

Fast forward three years and Leah is now flying planes for Mr Hall and she loves it. There’s nothing better than being free in the air, controlling her own destiny and not having to worry about life when shes in the air.

Mr Hall has three sons, Grayson and Alec, who are twins and Jake, who is older than the twins. Although Leah doesn’t know them, she sees them when they visit their father but they don’t associate with her as they think they are ‘above’ her and that shes having an affair with their dad – they cant be further than the truth as Leah thinks of Mr Hall as a surrogate dad.

When Mr Hall dies, from the stress of Jake dying in the war, Leah has no idea what she is going to do as she assumes the business will shut down and she will be out of a job. But instead, Grayson and Alec decide they are to keep the business and keep Leah as a pilot – although Grayson has other ideas and blackmails her in return for keeping her job.

This is where all the major drama appears. Being blackmailed into dating Alec, even though she has no idea why she has to date him as Grayson won’t tell her, you can see the torment in Leah as she needs to keep her job but then she doesn’t like Alec that way – its always been Grayson she has liked, but she really needs the job and so she agrees, reluctantly.

During the course of the book, you see the emotions of all the characters, especially Leah and Grayson. As much as he wants to stay away, he looks out for Leah when her mum isn’t there – which is most of the time – so when a storm is brewing, he takes her to safety, away from her metal trailer to the basement in the airstrip and that is when you know, that he is totally in to Leah, even though he doesn’t want to admit it. But throughout the book, parts where she has to pretend to like Alec, you can figure out his jealousy over the two of them, even though Leah only thinks of Alec as a brother.

Over due course, it was obvious that Grayson had feelings for Leah, and he knew she liked him but he wouldn’t do anything about it. It was about keeping Alec at the airstrip and putting him first before himself, which is actually really nice of him to do, but it hurt Leah to be blackmailed when all she wanted was for Grayson to see her. When he finally got his act together, i was smiling so badly! My poor, flawed, jealous Grayson, you finally got what you have wanted all along.

There is so much more that I would love to talk about, but I don’t want to write a massive spoiler before you are all read it. Let’s just say, there’s an accident which makes characters shift their butts into gear and i was so glad of the ending. It was super cute that all the characters got a happy ending and ended up with the person they wanted to be with.

This is the first book i have read from Jennifer Echols but it certainly wont be the last. I absolutely loved this book and it had me hooked. I read this when I had free time during my holiday to Paris and this story was all i could think about all day until we would come back to the holiday to relax before going back out. When a book gets to me like this, you know its a great read!

Read this book, if it’s the only one you do.

Posted in Alexis Lauren, Romance, YA

Under Her Skin – Alexis Lauren

Synopsis

Marlo LaPointe is there to take care of her brother and his band mates, even the one that annoys her the most. Marlo and Tobias never got along. But when he turns into her Knight in Shining Armor more than once, she starts seeing him in a different light. What happens when then? She follows the band Pleasure Pointe as they are starting out and becoming a success.

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My Review

I have a secret. I love reading about bands and romance concerning the members – as you can see from Backstage Pass and Hard Rock (so far) and this book didn’t disappoint.

We start off with Marlo – known as Lola to her friends. She is her brother’s band PA and is very close to him, seeing as their parents didn’t care for them at all. Marlo gets along with everyone in the band apart from Tobias – the lead singer.
They seem to rub off on each other and argue whenever they are in the company of each other.

Being a 24 year old, she was a bit childish over her stance on Tobias, but hearing him having sex – as the playboy of the band that he is – would have wound me up too but one night where something traumatic nearly happens to Marlo and with her boyfriend – now ex- standing there not doing anything, Tobias sees red and jumps in to help her.

Throughout her downward depression, Tobias is there for Marlo, which is a turn of events and hes there every step of the way, making sure she gets back to her old self.

To make sure she does, he acts like a dick in front of her and that gets her spark back.

During the book, their relationship progresses and Tobias cant understand his feelings for Marlo – hes attracted to her but hes never had a committed relationship before and Marlo begins to have feelings for him too.

They spend time together, still sleep in each other’s bed and kiss quite a bit, but I don’t think he fully gets to grips with his feelings until Marlo ends up in hospital and she has to spend two weeks away from him, where they both end up missing each other.

Tobias and Marlo get together and it was nice to see him changing from a playboy to being a one woman man. Although there is drama along the way for the couple and for certain members of the band – Marlo’s brother Dusty included, you could see the love that Tobias had for Marlo and vice versa and the ending was very nice to read.

I recommend this book for all you out there.

Posted in Romance, YA

Overprotected – Jennifer Laurens

Synopsis

Ashlyn: A lonely society princess living in New York City.Daddy hired you to be my bodyguard.
Colin: Childhood enemy, now her protector.Daddy thought I’d be safe. He thought I’d never fall in love. He thought he could keep me forever.
Charles: obsessed with keeping her safe, keeping her his, he hires the one person he knows she could never fall in love with: Colin. Daddy was wrong.

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My Review.

So recently I’ve been reading Young Adult books and to be fair, I actually really enjoy reading them. Although from the synopsis, it sounds more like a kiddy book, its not – just putting that out there.

Ashlyn has grown up not knowing any better about her life. Since an incident when she was younger, she has lived a sheltered life, not being allowed out without a bodyguard with her, she has only one friend, and her dad checks her phone every once in a while to see who she is talking to. The only thing she knows about love is from romance books and shes never had a boyfriend, let alone a boy friend.

One night, Ashlyn decides to go out alone, without Stuart, her bodyguard and she spots  her old neighbor and tormenter on the way back to her security-ridden house, wondering why he was in New York.

Sneaking in the house, Stuart, her bodyguard and the guy who is in love with Ashlyn, begins to shout at her, and knowing his feelings for her, she gets him fired, hoping it will stop her dad hiring bodyguards for her and let her live her life.

Oh no, thats not what happens at all! Her dad hires her old tormenter, Collin, as her bodyguard and Ashlyn is not happy at all, especially as he now has to move into the house.

To get away from everything in her life, her piano and music composing are her escape from everything and everyone. She ends up conducting a song about her feelings for Collin, which Collin hears and tells her that he likes it.

Over the course of the book, Ashlyn tries everything to get Collin sacked but alas, to no avail, hes staying put. Things in her family arent all they seem behind closed doors, and Collin and her music become her sanctuary. Ashlyn begins to fall for Collin, after spending so much time together and when he turns her down, she is so disheartened but its only because of his job that he can’t do anything with Ashlyn.

With her family unit breaking down, her feelings for Collin intensifying, its not only Collin that is keeping an eye on Ashlyn, someone else is too and things are about to be traumatic in their lives.

It’s a great book and i understood Ashlyn’s struggles at her dad’s overprotection, but as Ashlyn, i would find it difficult to be so restricted that i would want to rebel as well.

If you;re looking for a quick romance book, then this is the one to read.