Once Upon A Dream (Twisted Tales #2)

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Rating:
1 Star/ DNF
Published: April 2016
Genre: Young Adult // Fairytale Retelling // Fantasy

What if the sleeping beauty never woke up? Once Upon a Dreammarks the second book in a new YA line that reimagines classic Disney stories in surprising new ways.
It should be simple–a dragon defeated, a slumbering maiden, a prince poised to wake her. But when said prince falls asleep as soon as his lips meet the princess’s, it is clear that this fairy tale is far from over.
With a desperate fairy’s last curse infiltrating her mind, Princess Aurora will have to navigate a dangerous and magical landscape deep in the depths of her dreams. Soon she stumbles upon Phillip, a charming prince eager to join her quest. But with Maleficent’s agents following her every move, Aurora struggles to discover who her true allies are, and moreover, who she truly is. Time is running out. Will the sleeping beauty be able to wake herself up? Summary taken from Goodreads.
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Finding Fraser

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Rating: 1 Star / DNF
Published: May 2015
Genre: Fiction/ Romance

Sometimes searching for true love can be a little…Outlandish.
I met Jamie Fraser when I was nineteen years old. He was tall, red-headed, and at our first meeting at least, a virgin. I fell in love hard, fast and completely. He knew how to ride a horse, wield a sword and stitch a wound. He was, in fact, the perfect man.
That he was fictional hardly entered into it.
At 29, Emma Sheridan’s life is a disaster and she’s tired of waiting for the perfect boyfriend to step from the pages of her favorite book. There’s only one place to look, and it means selling everything and leaving her world behind. With an unexpected collection of allies along the way, can Emma face down a naked fishmonger, a randy gnome, a perfidious thief, and even her own abdominal muscles on the journey to find her Fraser?
Summery taken from Goodreads.
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Absolutely True Lies

Thank you Net Galley and Touchstone for providing me with a copy of this ebook in exchange for an honest review!

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Rating: 4 Stars
Published: May 12 2015
Genre: Women’s Fiction

Holly is trying to live the dream in Hollywood but she’s poor and underpaid.  When she gets the news that the company she’s working for is going under, she panics. How is she going to pay rent? Or feed her cat? Then out of the blue, she gets a call from a guy named Jameson asking her if she wants to interview to ghostwrite some celebs’ autobiography.  Unsure of what to expect and kinda desperate, Holly takes the plunge.  She meets Daisy, a teen idol, and her whole world turns upside down.  Holly needs to get inside Daisy’s head but with all the drama that is Hollyweird, she finds it increasingly difficult to get something real out of her.  To make matters worse, Jaime isn’t paying her and Holly’s beginning to find it difficult to determine what’s real and what’s not.

I was unsure of this book at first. I though daisy was crazy and unbelievable. That Jamie was a bit unrealistic.  That all changed when I got to the end of the book. It’s not that ultimately that different, it’s just that I understood it more.  This fantastic portrayal of Hollywood will leave you wishing, through all the crazy times, that you were a ghost writer, too. If only for a few days.

I’m not going to tell you that this is a groundbreaking novel. That it’s a story that’s never been told. That you’re going to get the inside scoop on the elite we all dream about being for at least a minute or two. I will tell you that this was a while ride. That it’s an accurate portrayal of a woman’s struggle to become an adult and navigate new experiences and relationships.

Holly is a great character. Sure, she’s naive and inexperienced to be dealing with sharks but that’s what makes the story worth reading.  You feel like you’re her.  You can easily picture yourself in her shoes.

I’m still not quite sure where everything stands with Daisy & Faith. And I think that’s a good thing. This book leaves you wondering who these people who live these glamorous lives really are. How much of what we see if constructed and what’s real? Will we really know? .

If you have a friend obsessed with Hollywood or writing, give this to them.

P.S. The cover is too cute.

At the Water’s Edge

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Rating: 5 Bursting Stars
Published: March 31 2015
Genre: Historical Fiction
Favorite Quote:

“I wanted to know what it was like to experience a love so deep you couldn’t bear to exist without it.”

Maddie is married to Ellis, a headstrong Philadelphian high society man.  When he makes a fool of himself, and his father, on New Year’s Eve, the Colonel cuts him off.  To redeem himself, he concocts a plan to win back his dad’s father by finding proof of the Loch Ness Monster, and dragging Maddie along for the ride.  To Scotland they go, the Three Musketeers, (Maddie, Ellis, and their friend Hank) during WWII.  Ellis struggles with his inability to serve due to his colorblindness and Hank is always up for a lark.  Maddie gets increasingly annoyed that they took this frivolous trip to the Highlands during a war but learns more about herself than she would have if she stayed in Philadelphia.  It’s a journey of self-discovery, friendship, and love.

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Disappear Home

Thank you Net Galley and Albert Whitman & Company for providing me an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

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Rating: Did Not Finish 
Published: March 1 2015
Genre: Young Adult

It’s the 1970s. The age of hippies, drugs, and distrust of the government. Shoshanna, Mara, and their mom, Ella, have just escaped from a hippie commune, Sweet Earth Farm, and try to make a living and new life in California. They ran away from their dad, Adam, who isn’t a good father or person.  Always worrying that their past is going to catch up them, they get lucky and find a friend from their old apartment in San Francisco.  They make a fresh start near the ocean but Ella’s depression is quick to make their lives even more complicated.

I wasn’t digging it.  Ella’s voice sometimes fell flat a lot and while that kinda makes sense with the depression, I still couldn’t get a read on her.  The writing wasn’t fantastic but it wasn’t terrible, either. It definitely showed potential.  Mara was easy to write, I’m sure, since she’s a kid.  But Ella didn’t always stand out from Soshie except for when she was saying, man. Or far out. Or other quintessential hippie things.

I’m not going to lie.  I requested this book solely because of the cover.  It’s GORGEOUS. Absolutely gorgeous. If I could get a print of that cover, I would. But the story? Not so much. It was getting tedious.  There was too much repetition and the dialogue wasn’t realistic.

I only made it 68% before I had to stop reading. I’ve officially decided that life’s too short to read bad books and there are a ton of books that are worth reading out there. I could see a lot of potential in this story but I think it was just gone about in the wrong way. It could have been framed differently or made not as dramatic.  Information about Adam was too slow in revealing itself and I feel like not a ton of stuff happened by the time I finally decided to stop.  I wish I would have liked it better. This would have been a great story, especially since I haven’t read anything that’s set in the 70s.

Down from the Mountain

Net Galley Friday is here again and today I’m reviewing Down from the Mountain. Thanks to Net Galley and Albert Whitman & Company for a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review!

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Rating: 3 Stars
Published: March 1 2015
Genre: Young Adult

Eva and her mother are a member of the Righteous Path.  They will be saved from the heathen word because their leader, Ezekial, hears the word of God.  Ever since the compound’s move from Arizona to Colorado, their food supplies have been low along with morale and Eva doesn’t quite know what to think anymore. Her thoughts become more confused as she’s tasked with making and selling jewelry in town where her eyes become more open to the outside world since it’s more different than what she thought.

This novel is different.  This isn’t my typical read but I enjoyed it, nonetheless.  I loved being inside Eva’s head as she grew as a person and learned to think for herself.  It’s fascinating to read about cults and this gives more insight into how hard it is to break away from something you grew up as knowing as the only way.

I like that even though you’re probably rolling your eyes at the beliefs of the cult while reading the novel, you can understand the power it holds over the character.  I really enjoyed reading this story.  It’s not something you come across every day, especially in YA.

However, there are some things that I felt were underdeveloped, for instance, Jacob’s change of friendship with Eva, Trevor’s character and plot line, the character of Mother Rachel, and some of the background info about the cult itself.  There was some repetition in information, as well.

I liked the ending but at the same time, I would love to continue reading about Eva as she adjusts to her new life. There’s so much more that could have been explored.  I just think it was too short.

Over all,  I would recommend this novel because it’s different and well- written despite the lack of other details I would have liked.

The Glass Magician (The Paper Magician #2)

Thanks to NetGalley and Amazon Publishing for providing me a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review!

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Rating: 3.5 Stars
Published: November 2014
Genre: Young Adult// Fantasy// Historical Fiction
Favorite Quote:

“One can never be too irrational.”

Ceony Twill is being targeted by Grath Cobalt, one of Lira’s accomplices.  He wants to know what she did to Lira to make her freeze. Ceony wouldn’t dream of telling him for she knows she never wants to let her out in the world again. When she tells Emery about their encounter, he freaks, naturally. The magicians council believe that Ceony shouldn’t fight him on her own, clearly, and are barring her from informational meetings.  When Ceony takes matters into her own hands once again, things get dangerous.

The book picks up 3 months after the events from the last novel.  I was much more interested in this installment than I was the first.  Things really seemed to be picking up and I had an easier time getting into the story since everything was all set up.

I know there has to be conflict in these books but I think that’s the part that I’m finding unbelievable.  I don’t really see how being a Folder means that they can defeat magicians with bonds to much more dangerous or useful elements.  I don’t know.  I think it’s an interesting and unique story.  Like I said for the first one, it’s very well written but it may just not be for me.  I don’t really have any strong feelings for one way or another.

I only skimmed a little in this book, must less than I did the first one. I enjoyed it more.  I’m intrigued with the growing relationship between Emery Thane and Ceony which made me want to read more intently in case I miss some crucial moment between them.

I don’t know how I feel about the one chapter from Emery’s point of view.  While it was interesting to find out what he was doing after he left Ceony, I found myself not really caring.  I just wanted to know what happened to Ceony and Delilah.

I’m mildly curious as to what will happen in the last installment.  Ceony is left with a choice to make and I want to know her decision.  I have no idea what’s going to happen in the last novel since not much was left on a cliffhanger. I’m not sure if I’ll read it but at this point, I think I might to see if the story continues to get better.

Mr. Kiss & Tell (Veronica Mars #2)

This week on NetGalley Friday, I’m thrilled to share my review of Mr. Kiss & Tell by Rob Thomas & Jennifer Graham.  Many thanks to NetGalley and Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.  I was so excited to be approved to review this. I have been waiting and waiting and waiting!

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Rating: 5 Stars
Published: January 20, 2015
Genre:  Mystery//Thriller

Our favorite spunky heroine is back for the next installment of Veronica Mars.  When a young woman is found raped and beaten on the side of the road, no one solves the case until she claims it was someone who worked at The Neptune Grand.  When the insurance company brings Veronica on to work the case and determine if it was someone who worked at the Grand, she’s determined to find the truth.  Meanwhile, Keith is trying to bring a lawsuit against the Sheriff Department.

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The Mime Order (The Bone Season #2)

Many thanks to Bloomsbury & NetGalley for providing me with an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I couldn’t believe my luck when I got the email saying that I was eligible to read this!

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Rating: 3.5  Stars
Published: January 27, 2014
Genre: Adult Fantasy // Paranormal
Favorite Quotes:

“And words, my walker- well, words are everything.  Words give wings even to those that have been stamped upon, broken beyond all hope of repair.”

Paige Mahoney, otherwise known as The Pale Dreamer, has orchestrated her escape from Sheol I and managed to bring 7 others back with her.  As she stays in hiding, she waits for Scion to declare an escape was made from The Tower.  In order to protect herself, she must go back to Jax and the syndicate.  Paige wants to tell all the voyeurs about the Rephaim but Jax doesn’t think anyone should know.  As his mollisher, Paige can’t go against his orders until she becomes mime-queen. So Paige figures out a plan to warn the entire syndicate about the dangers that lie ahead. But will her plan go as expected?

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