Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Review: Romeo & What's Her Name by Shani Petroff

Romeo & What's Her Name
By: Shani Petroff
Release Date: February 7, 2017

An unprepared understudy is forced to take the stage with her secret crush in this romantic YA comedy of errors from author Shani Petroff.
Understudies Never Get to Perform
...which is why being Juliet's understudy in the schools yearly "Evening with Shakespeare" is the perfect role for Emily. She can earn some much-needed extra credit while pursuing her main goal of spending time with Wes, aka Romeo, aka the hottest, nicest guy in school (in her completely unbiased opinion). And she meant to learn her lines, really, it's just:
a) Shakespeare is HARD,
b) Amanda aka the "real" Juliet makes her run errands instead of lines, and
c) there's no point since Amanda would never miss he chance to be the star of the show.
Then, Amanda ends up in the hospital and Emily, as the (completely unprepared!) understudy, has to star in the most famous scene from William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet opposite the guy of her dreams. Oops?

This book was absolutely adorable. Think of like the crazy things that happen when you are in high school add in a bit of Shakespeare and of course a really big gesture and you have a wonderfully perfect contemporary story. Shani Petroff did a really great job bringing you to this high school and making you love the characters in this story. You couldn’t help but root for them from the very beginning!
We meet Emily who is head over heels crushing on her neighbor Wes. They’ve been friends forever but she’s too scared to admit to him just how much she likes him.  She has this really great plan to do a Shakespeare sketch of Romeo and Juliet just so she can get closer to him. Only problem is she is horrible at English and even worse when it comes to Shakespeare, let’s not forget that she’s only the understudy, the person she dislikes the most is the real Juliet and has lately been all over Wes.
Wes just happens to be completely adorable in every way possible, quite the gentleman and really delightful. If Emily doesn’t snag him quick I might have to keep him in my pocket because he's just that picture-perfect. Talk about really great book boyfriend material!
I love how Emily's friend always have her back no matter what crazy things she wants to do. But let's not cut Emily too short, she was too funny in this book. Emily is the kind of girl you can't help but notice and not always for good things but because she puts herself out there for the world to see.  Sure sometimes things don't come out the way she expects them but she's fun and she isn't afraid of embarrassing herself at all.  She was a very likable character and I would completely be her friend. But again her friends definitely are there for her one hundred percent. 
There were so many great scenes in this book and when they butchered Shakespeare it was amazingly and funny-eth.  If you are looking for the next great contemporary Yong adult book this is definitely something you have to pick up. Loved every second of it.  It was a quick and fun read with characters you can't help but smile at.  I literally laughed out loud.  Oh the shenanigans that went on in this book were both classic and original.  You really never know what crazy thing Emily was going to do next or what was going to happen to her.
I love the cover it really drew me to the book. It's cute, eye catching and charming. The setting and story plot was very addicting, realistic and enjoyable. The writing was splendid, flowed quite nicely and really kept you going. I will definitely be checking more out from this author.  Make sure to pick this book up because I promise you will not be disappointed in the least.

I received this book from NetGalley and Macmillan Children's Publishing Group, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Monday, January 30, 2017

Review: One More Kiss by Samantha Chase

One More Kiss
By: Samantha Chase
Release Date: February 7, 2017
Series: Band on the Run #1

Matt Reed was living the dream until a bad career move sends him back to his hometown for much-needed privacy. Instead, he finds someone he never expected: the woman whose steamy kiss he remembers like it was yesterday.

Vivienne Forrester finally has her life in order... until Matt moves back to town. She doesn't want to think about the time she threw caution to the wind with him, but running into him everywhere, it's impossible not to...

I absolutely adore books that include music or musicians so this book was right up my alley.  I love that it is the beginning of a series and I get to experience it from the very start.  Samantha Chase did a great job bringing you into this world of musicians and characters where everything isn’t so perfect but it’s how you get over your hurdles that define the person you will become. 

We have a prelude to a couple years before the book starts and it’s a great way to introduce the main love interest, they’ve met before but not both of them will remember. It was great and really its many girl’s fantasies, first this is your brother’s best friend, second he’s now a rock star, and I mean really who wouldn’t want that?  The two couldn’t be more different from one another but it’s the complimenting of each other’s personality that makes them work the right way.

Matt Reed is on a hiatus after having had some bad backlash of his performance on Broadway, hey that kind of stage is not for everyone.  So he’s hiding out at his best friend’s house, where Aaron’s sister happens to live in the guest house next door to the main house.  First off the scenery in this book the description of the house, the kitchen, the food and the location is amazing, makes me really want to go there to relax.  Regardless this was a recipe for something very interesting and not a disaster at all.  There was an attraction there from the very beginning, and according to preface even longer than that.

It was pure joy watching them get to know one another again and enjoying each other’s company.  It was a joy watching them grow and learn from one another, whether it was about food or family, relationships or responsibilities they conquered it because they each made the other person better.  Vivienne was very OCD, there is no other way to explain it but she felt some type of way about her parents, it’s tough I can completely relate to her in the story about some people acting differently towards you than others around you, it’s hard.  But I like the way she resolved her issues at the end of the book.  Same with Matt, although his situation was a little harder you can’t really define what’s more dire to one person, after all you aren’t the one living in their shoes.

Overall this was a really great start to the series and I can’t wait to see who comes up next!  Love the cover, it’s initially what got me interested in the book, again a musician and he’s quite good looking, I’m all for it!  

I received this book from NetGalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Review: P.S. I Like You by Kasie West

P.S. I Like You
By: Kasie West
Release Date: July 26, 2016

Signed, sealed, delivered…

While spacing out in chemistry class, Lily scribbles some of her favorite song lyrics onto her desk. The next day, she finds that someone has continued the lyrics on the desk and added a message to her. Intrigue!

Soon, Lily and her anonymous pen pal are exchanging full-on letters—sharing secrets, recommending bands, and opening up to each other. Lily realizes she’s kind of falling for this letter writer. Only, who is he? As Lily attempts to unravel the mystery and juggle school, friends, crushes, and her crazy family, she discovers that matters of the heart can’t always be spelled out…

This book was AMAZING! Really anything by Kasie West that I’ve read so far has been amazing.  We meet a group of characters who are memorable and the plot was something out of dreams.  It was super cute, adorable, and loveable and I just connected with everyone in this book.  It takes a real special skill to make that connection between reader and characters, it’s a beautiful thing.

We meet quirky, crazy hair, big family Lily who is trying to get over her boredom in chemistry.  It’s a tough class, I remember but I loved it.  For Lily, not so much so be it a surprise for her when she writes something on a desk and someone writes back.  In comes the beginning of a wonderful story.  The mystery of having someone you don’t know write to you and you get to know someone without any pretenses.  Words are very magical and when you don’t know who is reading them you tend to be as honest and as real as you possibly can.  This is what brings Lily and her Chemistry pen pal together.

The other characters in the book are her best friend Isobel who is constantly trying to get her to like someone so they can both be happy.  Sometimes it’s not about being with someone that makes you happy but being with the right person.  There is one person they both have in common, Isobel’s ex. Cade Jennings.  He is Lily’s enemy, they constantly fight with one another.  I don’t call that hate I call that passion.

Each and every character has their own issues and it’s just fun living in their lives with them.  I felt for every character.  Throughout the book I cried, I laughed, I smiled, I frowned, I had butterflies, and hopes, there were just so many emotions I went through and they all helped make this book absolutely perfect.  The writing really captivates you and you can’t help but get sucked into the world that you are reading.  The characters are so vibrant, unique and personable. 

I really don’t want to say too much about this book away because I don’t want to give anything away.  I just know that I loved it from beginning to end, you will be hooked.  It was a quick and fun read that you couldn’t help but enjoy.  Family, friends, enemies and school what better characters and settings can you have.  Great contemporary by Kasie West, she is a wonderful writer and all her books are just marvelous.  Go read this if you haven’t already!


Monday, January 16, 2017

Review: Pushing the Boundaries by Stacey Trombley

Pushing the Boundaries
By: Stacey Trombley
Release Date: January 16, 2016
Series: Off Limits #1

Myra goes to Haiti with one goal: take the photograph that will win a scholarship and prove to her uber-traditional family that she has what it takes to be a photographer instead of a doctor. Her camera has always been her shield against getting too close to anyone, but she didn’t expect the hot teen translator who has an ability to see past her walls.

Elias needs his job as a translator to provide for his siblings. He can’t afford to break the rule forbidding him from socializing with a client. Except this girl Myra insists on going outside the city to capture the perfect picture, and he steps in as her guide in order to keep her safe.

The deeper they travel into the country, the harder they fall for each other. Now they’re both taking risks that could cost each other their dreams.

If they get too close—it could ruin both their lives.

This was an interesting read.  There were highs and lows in this book for me but overall by the ending I started to feel a little more for the characters as a whole.  It was a nice to start to a new series, would love to see where this is going though.

We meet Myra as she is on a trip to Haiti with her mother to work at a clinic.  First let me say this is something countries like Haiti need more of, it’s great to see a book that emphasizes the needs and wants of other countries in beneficial ways.  Sure you can’t help them all but every little bit helps overall.  I think the characterization of the Haitian people was good, was it perfect, maybe not.  I’m not Haitian so I can’t really say and I’ve never been but I can definitely image.  I know how tough it can be.  Anyway I’m sidewinding away from the story.  Myra is trying to sneak away to see the real Haiti in hopes of getting a photograph so she can submit it for a college that her mom doesn’t want her to go to.  It’s all very dramaqueenesque, but what is a problem for some may not be for others, meaning what is a big deal to one person may not seem like a big deal to another. 

We meet Elias who is also fighting to survive for him and his family with his job driving and interpreting for the Americans.  But his attraction to Myra seems to be his downfall.  It’s actually really sweet how quickly he fell for her and how utterly hurt he is by her, but still he fights for her.  Will Myra do the same for him though?  That is the question and you will have to read the book to find out.

I think this book had a lot of good points to it, it was a quick read, interesting to throw you into this kind of setting.  Not something that happens in young adult books or contemporary romances.  This wasn’t even about the two cultures clashing and possible love, this was really about two people from two different worlds trying to get through their young lives and live happily doing what they know best.  There are issues being bought up in this book such as parent and child differences, coworkers showing over empowerment over other employees. So many things throughout this book.  It did bring a tear to my eye at one point.  But this is just the beginning. Let’s see what will happen next.

Love the cover, the story and just everything it was an overall good book.

I received this book from NetGalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Review: A Bad Bit Nice by Josie Kerr

A Bad Bit Nice
By: Josie Kerr
Release Date: September 22, 2015
Series: Second Chance Neighbors Book 1

Em Davidson is a curvy, never-married, 43-year-old Internet security analyst who has been working at the wrong job, living in the wrong house, and involved with the wrong man for about 10 years too long. All she wants is a challenging career, her very own home, and an age-appropriate Mister Ideal who will make her toes curl when he kisses her.

Mick Brennan is a bearded, tattooed widower of 20-plus years who thinks, maybe, just maybe, he might be ready to dip his foot back in the dating pool. He might not know exactly what he’s looking for in a relationship, but he knows he doesn’t want a girl half his age.

When Em moves into her dream home, she had no idea that her downstairs neighbor could be her Mister Ideal. When Mick meets his talkative upstairs neighbor, he’s more intrigued by the her than he has been in any other woman in two decades.

Can these two lonely people overcome the wounds of their pasts to discover love again?

This contemporary/second-time contains explicit sexual situations and graphic language.

This book goes to show you that you do have a life after forty and sometimes good things come to those who wait, or should I say sometimes there are second chances to a happy ending.  It all depends on how you handle situations and taking that first step forward in life.  Josie Kerr did a great job of introducing us to these brilliant characters who do just that, take that leap of faith.

We meet Em who is not doing too good at work and her relationship, not because of her mind you but because of her surroundings and the people around her.  There’s only one thing to do and that’s to leave it all behind and start something new, start doing what you’ve been wanting to do forever and with that will come good things, at least she hopes they will.  Which let’s face it, it wouldn’t be a good book if good things didn’t happen to come her way, especially in the form of one very attractive neighbor.  Mick is living day by day and just surviving, not really looking for anything or anyone especially after the life and luck he’s had in life (bad luck).  He just wants to keep going and nothing more, that is until he meets his new neighbor and a spark flies, a spark he hasn’t felt in years.  There is life after tragedy.

The chemistry between the two main characters, and let’s face it everyone in this book, is outstanding.  I love the little bit of Irish and other nuances in this book, it’s always good to learn new phrases here and there.  After all a bad bit nice, has an interesting ring to it, right?  So yes not only is there chemistry between Em and Mick but also between their best friends, they can make it a party! There are some real issues throughout the book it’s not all about getting down to business in the best sense of the word, there is history that is being dealt with on both ends.  Sometimes the things you go through in life are what make you who you are though, and I think it works out for them but it’s a struggle to get there. 

Overall I thought this was a great book and a really great start to a series, sure they’ve all been printed already but I’m interested and I’m jumping in full force and if you haven’t already I suggest you do too.  Love the characters.  Great story plot, love the couple and the setting.  There was a bit of action, drama, great friendships, bad exes and sad stories.  Overall kept me wanting to read it in one sitting!