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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Lockdown (YA)

Lockdown (YA)

This was a good young adult realistic fiction read.  Reese is a teenager in a juvenile detention center for stealing prescription pads from a doctor and giving them to a drug dealer.  Reese participates in the center's work release program and meets an older man who lived in the internment camps during WWII.  Reese begins to realize that life is hard for a lot of people and he begins to make a plan for life after time served.  Myers wrote the characters well in this book.  

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Flat Out Love

Julie heads to Boston to begin college and once she arrives, discovers her college housing has fallen through. The college roommate of Julie's mother lives in Boston with her husband and kids, and agrees to let Julie stay there. Julie first meets Matt, a quiet college kid, and then meets his mother Erin, his... father Roger and his sister Celeste. Celeste is a bit odd to say the least; she carries around a life-sized cardboard figure of her other older brother, Finn, who is traveling around the world. Julie connects with Finn via Facebook. She is drawn into this household and makes it her mission to make Celeste act more normally. This has varying degrees of success. This book was a mix of chick lit and mystery, with a lot of sarcastic humor. Jessica's witty writing style made this an enjoyable read. The author sent me this book in exchange for a honest review and I can honestly say I enjoyed reading it!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

When You Reach Me (YA)

When You Reach Me (YA)

Miranda's mother is going to be a contestant on the $20,000 Pyramid.  Miranda is hoping this will make a richer lifestyle possible for her.  She is upset that her oldest friend, Sal, is not speaking  to her anymore.  Miranda is learning about life the hard way--through old and new friendships, her relationship with her mother and loss.  This book was well-written and I enjoyed it.  The characters were extremely well-developed.  I read this book on my Kindle.

Scat (YA)

Scat (YA)

Nick and Marta fear their Biology Teacher.  On a class field trip, Mrs. Starch goes into the forest and no one sees her after that.  Nick and Marta investigate because they know that Mrs. Starch would never willingly miss a day of school.  They meet Tilly, an interesting man that they cannot decide if he is a bad guy or a good guy.  This book has lots of humor and good twists and turns.  I enjoyed it.  Like his other YA books, this book has an environmentally conscious theme to it.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Planting Dandelions

Planting Dandelions (review book)

This book is a memoir of sorts from a Good Housekeeping writer.  This book covers topics such as marriage, infidelity, childbirth and citizenship, not necessarily in that order.  I enjoyed the author's writing style a lot--sarcastic, witty and honest.  She reveals herself and her relationships fully.  There are times that she can be hard to understand her mindset on why she does what she does, but that just makes her more human.  I was sent this book by the publisher to review.  I would recommend it to readers who like chick lit, books by Jen Lancaster and woman's fiction.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Closed for the Season (YA) (Kindle)

Closed for the Season (YA) (Kindle)

Logan's family moves into a new house in a new town but no one told them that the previous owner of their new house was murdered in it.  Supposedly she had stolen lots of money and her murderer was never caught.  Logan meets Arthur, the geeky kid living next door, and the two begin to investigate the murder.  The two get themselves into some hot water but forge a friendship throughout it all.  This book was a good, quick mystery; I enjoy this author a lot.  I read this book on my Kindle.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Don't Look Behind You (YA)

Don't Look Behind You (YA)

April's father works for an airline and has been working undercover for the FBI.  When he testifies against a drug dealer, a hit is attempted on his life and the federal agents believe that he and his family need to go into the Witness Protection Program.  April becomes Valerie in a new town.  She is having issues with giving up her past life and rebels against the new identity.  This book was a good, action-packed read.  Lois Duncan is a classic mystery author.  I enjoyed this book.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Shadowed Summer (YA) (Kindle)

Shadowed Summer (YA) (Kindle)

Two girls begin to investigate the disappearance of Elijah, a boy who vanished years ago.  Is he alive or dead?  How could he vanish without a trace?  One of the girls begins to see his spirit and the spirit is not resting easy.  There are some good twists and turns in this book that makes it more than just a run of the mill ghost story.  The characters were a little underdeveloped but it did not hurt the story overall.  I read this book on my Kindle and I enjoyed it.  It was my first book by this author.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Bad Girls Don't Die (YA)

Bad Girls Don't Die (YA)

This book was creepy good.  Lexi is a pink-haired teenager who likes to go against the norm.  Kasey is her younger sister who is immature for her age.  Lexi realizes that Kasey is beginning to act strangely.  Is it more than just growing pains?  Say, like being possessed by an evil spirit?  Lexi befriends cheerleader Megan and the girls begin to investigate what force they may be dealing with.  This book was a good, creepy ghost story and I enjoyed it a lot.  Lexi was a great character.  There were a lot of twists and turns and a nice gothic feel to this book.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Adventures of Jack Lime (YA) (4/5)

The Adventures of Jack Lime (YA)

This book has three short mysteries, investigated by young detective Jack Lime.  Jack solves cases and in return, his clients have to promise him to do a future favor.  This book was a quick read.  The three stories had humor in them, were decent mysteries and had good characters in them.  I enjoyed this book.  I could see MS and HS boys especially enjoying this book.  

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Bullet Point (YA)

Bullet Point (YA)

Wyatt connects with his biological father, in prison for murder.  He meets Greer, an older girl who also has a father in prison.  As the pair begin to look into Wyatt's father's case, they are starting to believe that perhaps he was innocent after all.  There is a lot of action and twists and turns in this book.  This book would be a good read for reluctant YA readers, especially boys.  There is enough romance in it that girls could enjoy it as well.  This was a good, quick read.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

The Peach Keeper

Paxton and Willa are connected through their grandmothers--women who began a ladies club 75 years ago. Paxton is planning an anniversary celebration and in part as a tribute to the grandmothers, both now in nursing homes. But there is more to these elderly ladies than the seem. As for Paxton and Willa, they have their own issues. Paxton is in love with a man who may be gay and Willa is trying to be a responsible adult to atone for past mistakes. Willa has a connection with Paxton's brother, Colin.

This book had more subtle magical realism than this author's other books, all of which I loved. As in all of her books, The Peach Keeper has wonderfully crafted characters. Paxton is much more than a spoiled rich girl. Willa is an interesting and complex character. Sebastian has a heart of gold but keeps walls up around himself. Readers will be immediately drawn to these characters.


Add to these characters, a touch of mystery and dash of magic and you have a great tale to read and become immersed in.  I was sent this book to review through the Amazon Vine program.

The Queen of New Beginnings

The Queen of New Beginnings

Alice likes to reinvent herself with voice changes and persona make overs.  Clayton just wants to reinvent his life.  The two, after a bit of a rough start, become friends until a huge betrayal happens.  At first I thought this book would be fluffy chick lit but it is much more than that.  James writes decent characters and weaves a tale around them.  This book seemed to be a mix of  chick lit, southern fiction and romance all rolled into one.  I was sent this book by Sourcebooks to review.

Monday, April 4, 2011

A Discovery of Witches (Kindle)

A Discovery of Witches (Kindle)

Diana is a witch who has not yet come into her full powers.  She finds a manuscript that is coveted by many groups of paranormal creatures.  Diana meets Matthew, a vampire, who at first is just using her to get to the manuscript but then he falls in love with her.  This love breaks more paranormal rules and traditions and make Diana and Matthew even more of targets.  I loved the writing of this book--it was so lush and sucked me right in.  It reminded me a bit of Diane Setterfield's book The Thirteenth Tale, and that is a good thing.  I loved this book and apparently it is the first in a series.

Here Lies Bridget (YA)

Here Lies Bridget has a mean, nasty main character in Bridget--a popular girl who is only popular because people fear to cross her.  When Anna, the new girl, comes to Bridget's school, her feeling threatened goes into overdrive and she tries to throw a great party.  It does not help.  Bridget then crashes her car, sort of thinking that "they'll miss me when I'm gone".  She is in a coma/limbo state and Anna has all the people that she has hurt in a room.  Bridget begins to see her interactions with them from their point of view and feel what they felt when she was being mean to them.  But is it enough to save her--in so many ways?

This was a good read and I think HS girls would like it.  It shows the dark side of trying to be cool so much that you sacrifice others around you.  It was a quick read and I enjoyed it.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Demons are a Girl's Best Friend

Maggie is a witch who works as a law enforcement officer for paranormal creatures.  A case takes her to Declan's club; Declan is a demon.  The chemistry between these two is hot!  There are some problems with Mayan enemies and Maggie and Declan must work together to solve them.  This book has many different types of paranormal creatures in it, which was fun to read about.  There is steamy romance, good action and interesting characters.  This was a fun, quick read.  This book was sent to me by Sourcebooks to review.