May 30, 2012

YA Review: Adorkable by Sarra Manning

Author:  Sarra Manning
Publisher:  Atom
Publication Date:  May 24th 2012

From Goodreads:

Jeane Smith is seventeen and has turned her self-styled dorkiness into an art form, a lifestyle choice and a profitable website and consultancy business.  She writes a style column for a Japanese teen magazine and came number seven in The Guardian's 30 People Under 30 Who Are Changing the World.  And yet, in spite of accolades, hundreds of Internet friendships and a cool boyfriend, she feels inexplicably lonely, a situation made infinitely worse when Michael Lee, the most mass-market, popular and predictably all-rounded at school tells Jeane of his suspicion that Jeane's boyfriend is secretly seeing his girlfriend.  Michael and Jeane have NOTHING in common - she is cool and individual; he is the golden boy in an Abercrombie & Fitch T-shirt.  So why can't she stop talking to him?


I had been anticipating the release of Adorkable for months and when I woke up on May 24th there it was all ready for me on my kindle.  Though Adorkable isn't my favorite Sarra Manning book, it was great enough that I finished it up in one day.

Jeane is a strong emancipated teen who has a lot going for her in the cyber world.  She has many twitter and blog followers and her successful website Adorkable is a hit with the "dorks".  Jeane's life isn't so perfect though in the real world.  Michael, who is the golden boy of the school and Jeane have absolutely nothing in common except that their boyfriend and girlfriend are getting very close.  I love the interactions between Jeane and Michael, they were so much fun.  Jeane has her moments when she isn't so likeable, but it made her real.  Sometimes her tirade against conformity would be like "alright already", but then Sarra Manning would reveal a crack in Jeane's armor and I would immediately like her again.  Michael is one of my favorite male characters.  He's comfortable with who he is as much as Jeane is and she can't understand this which leads to some arguments between the two that are interesting and witty.  As characters both of them grow tremendously by the end of the book.

I really enjoyed Adorkable and definitely recommend it, especially if you like contemporary reads with a opposite's attract romance.

May 24, 2012

YA Review: Keep Holding On by Susane Colasanti

Keep Holding OnKeep Holding On
Author:  Susane Colasanti
Publisher:  Viking Juvenile
Publication Date:  May 31st 2012

From Goodreads:

Noelle's life is all about survival.  Even her best friend doesn't know how much she gets bullied, or the ways her mom neglects her.  Noelle's kept so much about her life a secret for so long that when her longtime crush Julian Porter starts payin g attention to her, she's terrified.  Surely it's safer to stay hidden than to risk the pain of a broken heart.  But when the antagonism of her classmates takes a dramatic turn, Noelle realizes it's time to stand up for herself--and for the love that keeps her holding on.


I freaking love Keep Holding On!  I've read almost all of  Susane Colasanti books and they have all been right in the middle reads with 3 star ratings from me, but Keep Holding On is a 5 star book.  By far the best book Ms. Colasanti has written.

Maybe it's so good because of the topics discussed?  The topics range from child neglect to bullying and all between. Noelle is going through a rough time at home and school.  At home she is ignored and neglected.  There isn't ever any food, and her mom is so depressed with her life that she does nothing but complain to Noelle, and blame her for it.  The bullying at school is so realistic. Noelle doesn't have money for the latest trendiest clothes and is making do with the little she has and is constantly picked on for it.

 I liked Noelle, I felt bad for Noelle, I wanted the best for Noelle.  When a character can touch you emotionally that you truly care for said character, then you struck book gold, in my opinion.  As Noelle slowly starts becoming stronger you can't help but smile and be happy for her. Julian, the love interest is a very interesting character.  His character is much more harder to grasp.  You see all the ways he's good, but he remains a mystery of sorts.

I highly recommend Keep Holding On.  You will immediately like Noelle and enjoy her growth.  One of my favorite YA this year.

May 16, 2012

YA Review: Unbreak My Heart by Melissa C. Walker

Unbreak My Heart
Unbreak My Heart
Author:  Melissa C. Walker
Publisher:  Bloomsbury USA
Publication Date:  May 22nd 2012

From Goodreads:

Sophomore year broke Clementine Williams' heart.  She fell for her best friend;s boyfriend and long story short:  he's excused, but Clem is vilified and she heads into summer with zero social life.

Enter her parents' plan to spend the summer on their sailboat.  Normally the idea of being stuck on a tiny boat with her parents and little sister would make Clem break out in hives, but floating away sounds pretty good right now.

Then she meets James at one of their first stops along the river.  He and his dad are sailing for the summer and he's just the distraction Clem needs.  Can he break down Clem's walls and heal her broken heart?


I really had a hard time getting into Unbreak My Heart, nothing felt new.  Clementine is a regular girl, it was nice to have a girl I'm sure many could relate to.  Everything Clem is going through is nothing outlandish or too much, it's ordinary "teenage" problems.  I thought it was a great idea to set this on a sailboat trip because we get many interactions between Clem and her family.  Parents don't usually play a huge part in YA unless they are dying, died or abusive. 

I did have to keep pushing to continue reading, not because it seriously sucked but because I felt like I have read this before.  The whole cheating with your best friends' boyfriend has been done before, I really feel that the characters, plot and secondary characters should be outstanding so that it can stand out.  Unbreak My Heart just wasn't outstanding to me.   I wasn't too thrilled with the love interest James.  He wasn't really all that interesting and for me it dulled the relationship as well as the James/Clem moments.  The vilifying of Clem is a little over done, seriously you'd think she was having a baby with this guy.  We find out what happened between Clem and her best friend boyfriends through flashbacks as Clem is thinking about it.  

Unbreak My Heart doesn't really stand out,  I'm pretty sure I won't even remember much about it a couple of months later, not to say you won't enjoy it while reading it, it's just not memorable.  

May 7, 2012

Mini Reviews

Aftertime (Aftertime, #1)Aftertime ( Aftertime, bk 1) by Sophie Littlefield
Publisher:  Luna
Publication Date:  February 22nd 2011

Aftertime is a post apocalyptic/dystopian zombie story.  Cass is trying to find her 3 yr. old daughter after they were separated when Cass was taken by the zombies.  Somehow Cass survives the zombie attack and gets better. I immediately got sucked into the story in the beginning, the middle is a bit slower but still enjoyable.  My problem is with the end, it is so anti-climatic and all over the place.  The feel of the ending didn't really match up with the rest.  3 stars

The Flight of Gemma Hardy
The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesey
Publisher:  HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date:  January 24th 2012

The Flight of Gemma Hardy is a modern retelling of Jane Eyre.  I have not read Jane Eyre yet, but I hope that Jane is more interesting than Gemma. There is a lot of boring mundane fillers in this book, like Gemma got up and fed the pigs and cooked this and that. Blah!  2 Stars


Darkly Dreaming Dexter (Dexter, #1)Darkly Dreaming Dexter (Dexter, bk 1) by Jeffrey Lindsey
Publisher:  Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Original Publication Date: July 20th 2004

Fascinating look into the mind of a sociapath.  Dexter is a killer but since he only kills bad people, he thinks he's actually doing us a favor. Dexter is a very cold and distant character, he lacks any emotions.  I enjoyed the simplicity of the writing and story.  4 stars

May 1, 2012

April Wrap-Up

This month I read a total of 8 books.

Deadline by Chris Crutcher Review
The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks  Review
Mob Daughter by Karen Gravano  Review
Grave Mercy by R.L. LaFevers  Review
Breaking Beautiful by Jennifer Shaw Wolf  Review
The Overnight Socialite by Bridie Clark  Review
I Love the 80s by Megan Crane  Review
Dark Places by Gillian Flynn  Review


April Favorite:

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Dark Places


April Miss:

The Overnight Socialite by Bridie Clark

The Overnight Socialite: A Novel


My TBR for May will be up tomorrow. This month I decided I will be reading only Adult books and they must already be on my shelves.  

I'm also participating in 

Page Count Contest

Page Count Contest 
hosted by Reading Angel

If your interested, go check it out to see what it's all about.
I believe you have until Thursday to sign up.

Top Ten Tuedays: Top Ten Books You'd Like to See Made Into a Movie

Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
This week's Top Ten is:

Top Ten Books You'd Like to See Turn into a Movie

The Bronze Horseman (Tatiana and Alexander, #1)

The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons

Divergent (Divergent, #1)
Divergent by Veronica Roth   

Outlander (Outlander, #1)

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon



The Spellman Files (The Spellmans, #1)

The Spellman Files by Lisa Lutz      

The Shadow of the Wind (El cementerio de los libros olvidados, #1)

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon    

The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes

The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes by Diane Chamberlain  

The Secret HistoryThe Secret History by Donna Tartt


From Notting Hill with Love... Actually
From Notting Hill With Love...Actually by Ali McNamara 

Heartsick (Gretchen Lowell, #1)

Heartsick by Chelsea Cain

The Fault in Our Stars

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green