Famous In a Small Town (Non-Spoiler Review)

Famous in a small town  by Brigid Emma Miles

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Published by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) on January 15, 2019

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 31

Format: Hardback

Source: Library

2018 challenge:

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3 for a review.

Summary!!!

For Sophie, small town life has never felt small. With her four best friends—loving, infuriating, and all she could ever ask for—she can weather any storm. But when Sophie’s beloved Acadia High School marching band is selected to march in the upcoming Rose Parade, it’s her job to get them all the way to LA. Her plan? To persuade country singer Megan Pleasant, their Midwestern town’s only claim to fame, to come back to Acadia to headline a fundraising festival.The only problem is that Megan has very publicly sworn never to return.What ensues is a journey filled with long-kept secrets, hidden heartbreaks, and revelations that could change everything—along with a possible fifth best friend: a new guy with a magnetic smile and secrets of his own.

My Thoughts:

This book Just did not wow me. I normally look foward to emma books and wanted to love it. I did enjoy and I read it super fast but I did not feel super connected to the characters and felt like this story was not super tighly wound. I thought the pacing and all the threads of this novel was just not as strong as her other novels. I thought some of the ending elements were little bit out of left field. I would consider re-reading this book knowing the end and seeing If I enjoy it more that way. This book I just did not feel as connected to the characters as I normally feel about her characters.

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Only a Breath Apart (Non-Spoiler Revoew

Only a Breath Apart by Katie McGary

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Published by Tor Teen (January 22, 2019)

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 359

Format: arc

Source: ALA

2018 challenge:

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 4.75 for a review.

Summary!!!

Bestselling author Katie McGarry’s trademark wrong-side-of-the-tracks romance is given a new twist in the gritty YA contemporary novel, Only a Breath Apart.

They say your destiny is carved in stone. But some destinies are meant to be broken.The only curse Jesse Lachlin believes in is his grandmother’s will: in order to inherit his family farm he must win the approval of his childhood best friend, the girl he froze out his freshman year.A fortuneteller tells Scarlett she’s psychic, but what is real is Scarlett’s father’s controlling attitude and the dark secrets at home. She may be able to escape, but only if she can rely on the one boy who broke her heart.Each midnight meeting pushes Jesse and Scarlett to confront their secrets and their feelings, but as love blooms, the curse rears its ugly head…

My Thoughts:

I really loved this story so much. I really enjoyed this hard hitting contemopory. I really enjoyed the duel POV and found how this book tackled various types of abuse super compelling/heartbreaking. I liked the longer time frame of this novel. I really love the blast from the past love and really enjoyed this aspect of the novel. I was equally invested in both storylines. I found the end pacing a bit wired but other then such a stand out novel. I am super excited to see who book focused on.

The me I am Meant to be (Non-Spoiler Review)

The Me I am Meant to be by Sophie Jordan

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Published by HMH Books for Young Readers on January 1, 2019

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 304

Format: ARC

Source: BEA

2018 challenge:

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3 for a review.

Summary!!!

Willa Evans has no intention of breaking the code. So what if she’s always secretly loved her next-door neighbor Zach? As her best friend’s boyfriend, he was always off-limits and it needs to stay that way, even though they just broke up. Even though every time she turns around he’s there, tempting her…

No keeping secrets from your bestie.

Flor Hidalgo has a lot on her plate: her breakup with Zach, her dad’s new dating life, and her struggling grades. So why can’t she stop thinking about her hot, know-it-all tutor? At least she’s got Willa, her constant in the chaos.

Breaking the code breaks friendships.

Two friends find themselves tempted by love that defies the rules in this steamy romance perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Simone Elkeles.

My Thoughts:

This book was a super fast pace read. I thought it was a rather fun cont. book that had the prefect balance between fun elements like romance and friendship dynamics. I also like how the girl code rules started each chapters as a fun way to structure the novel. I thought the POV could have been a bit stronger and a bit easier to tell them apart. The book was predictable at moments but I really did enjoy it and read it in a full day. I hope to read more by this author in the future.

The Lying Woods (ARC) Non-Spoiler Review!!!

The Lying Woods  by Ashley Elston

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Published by Disney-Hyperion on November 13, 2018

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary, thriller

Pages: 336

Format: arc

Source: ALA

2018 challenge: Beat the backlist challenge

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 5 for a review.

Summary!!!

Owen Foster has never wanted for anything. Then his mother shows up at his elite New Orleans boarding school cradling a bombshell: his privileged life has been funded by stolen money. After using the family business, the single largest employer in his small Louisiana town, to embezzle millions and drain the employees’ retirement accounts, Owen’s father vanished without a trace, leaving Owen and his mother to deal with the fallout.

My Thoughts:

I really found this book to a prefect read. I really was loved Owen and Noah is a lead characters. It is rather rare to have YA novel focused only on the male POV. I also really enjoyed the duel time line part of the story and found both storylines to be super compelling. I also really liked the balance that Elston created in the various genres between contempoary and thriller. I really found this book to be super compelling. I also thought this book tackled family issues super well. I think the own character really was so well done I would say this book is more of a contemporary novel with hints of mystery but the ending of this book was super shocking and i would def re-read this book in the future.

TTT: My Top Ten YA contemporary books that I need to read in 2019!!!

So I will admit i read fewer contemporary books every year then any other genre. So of these books are so old but they have been on my TBR for so long! So lets see the titles I hope to read in 2019!

  1. One last Breath (McGary)
  2. Say you will remember me (McGary)
  3. Speak Easy Speak Love
  4. Love and Gelato
  5. Little do we know
  6. WindFall
  7. Once and for all
  8. Saint Anything
  9. My life next door
  10. On the fence!!

Let me know in the comments what are your thoughts on these books if you have read them already!!!

The Resolutions: Non-Spoiler Review:

The Resolutions  by Mia Garcia

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Published by Katherine Tegen Books on November 13, 2018

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 416

Format: Hardback

Source: Library

2019 challenge: Beat the backlist challenge

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 4 for a review.

Summary!!!

A heart-expanding novel about four Latinx teens who make New Year’s resolutions for one another—and the whirlwind of a year that follows. Fans of Erika L. Sánchez and Emery Lord will fall for this story of friendship, identity, and the struggle of finding yourself when all you want is to start over.

From hiking trips to four-person birthday parties to never-ending group texts, Jess, Lee, Ryan, and Nora have always been inseparable. But now with senior year on the horizon, they’ve been growing apart. And so, as always, Jess makes a plan.Reinstating their usual tradition of making resolutions together on New Year’s Eve, Jess adds a new twist: instead of making their own resolutions, the four friends assign them to one another—dares like kiss someone you know is wrong for you, find your calling outside your mom’s Puerto Rican restaurant, finally learn Spanish, and say yes to everything. But as the year unfolds, Jess, Lee, Ryan, and Nora each test the bonds that hold them together. And amid first loves, heartbreaks, and life-changing decisions, beginning again is never as simple as it seems.

My Thoughts:

I found this to be really interesting read. I was really invested in all the characters and felt like the book was well paced. I loved the look into Latina culture and I really loved the characters relationship to their culture. I also really liked how the friendship dynamics were not dramatically effected by romance. I loved the book being set over a year and loved seeing these characters grown and change. I hope to read more by this author in the future.

Unclaimed Baggage (Non-Spoiler Review)

Unclaimed Baggage  by Jen Doll

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Published by  Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) on September 18, 2018

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 384

Format: Hardback

Source: Library

2018 challenge:

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3.5  for a review.

Summary!!!

In Jen Doll’s young adult debut novel, Unclaimed Baggage, Doris―a lone liberal in a conservative small town―has mostly kept to herself since the terrible waterslide incident a few years ago. Nell had to leave behind her best friends, perfect life, and too-good-to-be-true boyfriend in Chicago to move to Alabama. Grant was the star quarterback and epitome of “Mr. Popular” whose drinking problem has all but destroyed his life. What do these three have in common? A summer job working in a store called Unclaimed Baggage cataloging and selling other people’s lost luggage. Together they find that through friendship, they can unpack some of their own emotional baggage and move on into the future.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed the setting and the characters in this book. It was a super fast summer themed read. It was fast pace read that dealt with harder topics but was in such a easy to digest way. I thought this book tackled so many current issues in such a “slice of life” way that was so well done. I thought all the main characters brought such a fun POV to the novel and I really enjoyed them all! I would de read more by this author in the future. The setting and the store was charming framework for the story!

 

What If its us (Non-Spoiler Arc Review)!!

What If It’s Us  by byBecky Albertalli and Adam Silvera

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Published by  HarperTeen on October 9, 2018

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 448

Format: Arc

Source: BEA

2018 challenge: NA

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 4 for a review.

Summary!!!

Critically acclaimed and bestselling authors Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera combine their talents in this smart, funny, heartfelt collaboration about two very different boys who can’t decide if the universe is pushing them together—or pulling them apart.

ARTHUR is only in New York for the summer, but if Broadway has taught him anything, it’s that the universe can deliver a showstopping romance when you least expect it.

BEN thinks the universe needs to mind its business. If the universe had his back, he wouldn’t be on his way to the post office carrying a box of his ex-boyfriend’s things.

But when Arthur and Ben meet-cute at the post office, what exactly does the universe have in store for them . . . ?

Maybe nothing. After all, they get separated.

Maybe everything. After all, they get reunited.

But what if they can’t nail a first date even after three do-overs?

What if Arthur tries too hard to make it work and Ben doesn’t try hard enough?

What if life really isn’t like a Broadway play?

But what if it is?

What if it’s us?

My Brief Thoughts:

I really though this was the prefect summer read. I really loved both these authors on their own and just found this story to be such a fun read. I loved NYC as a back drop of this story and also the two characters that we follow. NYC almost felt like a whole character in this story. I also loved not only both POV but also the relationship that developed in this novel. I think i adored arthur a tad more but was so invested in this story. I thought elements of this story was predictable but I really loved this story and found it to be such a fun but diverse read!

My Extended Thoughts!!

Characters: I really loved both of these characters in this novel. I thought they were so well crafted and just so diverse. I also found the others characters in this novel to also so well-rounded. I think it was tad more invested in Arthur POV. But i found all the characters to been so well crafted.

Plot: Overall the plot was super well crafted and I just found the whole romance/relationship was super well done. I found it to be very reasltic but stil had hints of a claassic Rom Com. I thought this book did have predictable moments but overall I still loved it!

Duel Authors:  I thought that these two authors wrote so well together and that surprised me a tad becasue they write such different books. But I think you can def tell the different between their charactersand who wrote who. But i thoguht they worked together super well!

 

Fresh INK: Blog Tour and Giveaway (USA ONLY!!)

Fresh Ink Edited by Lamar Giles                                                                                                  Stories by  Nicola Yoon, Malinda Lo, Melissa de la Cruz, Sara Farizan, Eric Gansworth, Walter Dean Myers, Daniel José Older, Thien Pham, Jason Reynolds, Gene

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Published by  Crown Books for Young Readers (August 14, 2018)

Genres: Young Adult, Anthology

Pages: 208

Format: Hardback

Source: Publisher

2018 challenge: N/A

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 4  for a review.

Summary!!!

In partnership with We Need Diverse Books, thirteen of the most recognizable, diverse authors come together in this remarkable YA anthology featuring ten short stories, a graphic short story, and a one-act play from Walter Dean Myers never before in-print.

All it takes to rewrite the rules is a little fresh ink in this remarkable YA anthology from thirteen of the most recognizable, diverse authors writing today including Nicola Yoon, Jason Reynolds, Melissa de la Cruz, and many more, and published in partnership with We Need Diverse Books. This collection features ten short stories, a graphic short story, and a one-act play from Walter Dean Myers never before in-print. It will give readers the opportunity to discover how the next chapter is up to them.

Careful–you are holding fresh ink. And not hot-off-the-press, still-drying-in-your-hands ink. Instead, you are holding twelve stories with endings that are still being written–whose next chapters are up to you.

Because these stories are meant to be read. And shared.

Thirteen of the most accomplished YA authors deliver a label-defying anthology that includes ten short stories, a graphic novel, and a one-act play. This collection will inspire you to break conventions, bend the rules, and color outside the lines. All you need is fresh ink.

“I absolutely love this mix of established and newer talents, and I’m really intrigued and excited by the mixed formats.” –BookRiot

“A powerful and varied collection…”—Booklist, starred review

“The stories are distinct in themes, subjects, genres, and formats, creating an inclusive, authentic, and incredible collection”—School Library Journal, starred review

READ AN EXCERPT HERE!

My Thoughts:

I really loved this short story collection. I loved how diverse not only the characters in this stories were but also the diversity of the worlds these characters were set in. I loved seeing some science fiction and fantasy worlds depicted as well. I just was super excited to read new stories featuring so many diverse characters. Some of my favorite stories were how I learned to cook, Own voices and super human and meet cute. I really am intrigued to read more by this authors in the future!

Individual Story Ratings:

  1. Eraser Tattoo: 4 stars
  2. Mee cute: 4.5 stars *** one of my favorites of the collection
  3. Don’t Pass me by: 3 stars
  4. Be cool for once: 3 stars
  5. Tags:  4 stars
  6. Why I learned to cook: 5 stars**** One of my favorites of the collection \
  7. A Stranger at the Bochinche: 4.5 stars
  8. A Boy Duty: 4 stars
  9. Tags: 4 stars
  10. One Voice: 5 stars**** One of my favorites of the collection
  11. Paladin/Samurai 4.5 stars **** One of my Favorites of the collection
  12. Catch, Pull, Drive 4 stars
  13. Super Human    5 Stars*** One of my Favorites of the collection

Giveaway (USA ONLY)

May the odds be ever in your favor

 

 

To all the boys I loved Before: Non-Spoiler Review!!

To all the boys I loved before by Jenny Han

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Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers on January 26, 2016

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 384

Format: Paperback

Source: Personally bought

2018 challenge: Beat the backlist challenge

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3.5  for a review.

Summary!!!

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once?

Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

My Thoughts:

This book was quite a fun read. I really loved the diversity of this book and was super fascinated by the various relationship and triangle that developed. I really enjoyed the family dynamics in this story and it was def the highlight of the story. I also really enjoyed Lara Jean character as well. This book just put a smile on my face and it was just a fun read! I thought this story was a def a complete story and will be curious to see what happens in the next two books in this series!