Monday, March 30, 2015

Review: In a World Just Right by Jen Brook

In a World Just Right by Jen Brook
Imagination takes on new meaning for a uniquely talented teen in this debut novel that is a breathtaking blend of contemporary, fantasy, and romance.
Sometimes Jonathan Aubrey wishes he could just disappear. And as luck—or fate—would have it, he can. Ever since coming out of a coma as a kid, he has been able to create alternate worlds. Worlds where he is a superhero, or a ladies’ man, or simply a better version of himself. That’s the world he’s been escaping to most since sophomore year, a world where he has everything he doesn’t have in real life: friends, a place of honor on the track team, passing grades, and most importantly, Kylie Simms as his girlfriend.
But when Jonathan confuses his worlds senior year and tries to kiss the real Kylie Simms, everything unravels. The real Kylie actually notices Jonathan…and begins obsessing over him. The fantasy version of Kylie struggles to love Jonathan as she was created to do, and the consequences are disastrous. As his worlds collide, Jonathan must confront the truth of his power and figure out where he actually belongs—before he loses both Kylies forever.


Publishes in US: April 28, 2015
Genre: ya scifi alternate universes
Source: Simon Teen Pulse via edelweiss
Series? no?

Buy it:       

Author stalk away: ~site     


    I wanted to read In a World Just Right because I like the premise of the alternate universes. Turns out there is the emotional aspect with a good portion of his family deceased in the accident that left him in a coma as a kid. When he woke up, that is when his ability to make the other worlds emerged. His current world that he visits is based on Kylie, the girl he has a crush on and it soon turns out that that world and the real world gets confused.

    I like Jonathan. It is nice these days to get a male point of view in a book where it isn't a couple and their dual narrative. He is very self conscious of his scars, especially the big on on his face, and he feels invisible at school in the real world. It was a bit confusing for me--if he disappears from the real world when he is in his Kylie is my girlfriend world. If not, how the two works together, especially at school, where he is in most of the same, but not all classes, and in Kylie girlfriend he takes sports with her. 

    It is interesting to see where he prefers his made up world and then the things that make him feel like the Kylie girlfriend world is inconsequential, that why does it matter if it isn't the real world. And then a mystery girl that he feels like he knows but can't figure out how makes him question even more the lines of reality. 

    I like that there was some connection before his accident with Kylie, some reason for him to have a crush on her. Enough to make a whole alternate universe where they are a happy couple. 

    I liked the broad interests- from running track, to poetry that also has connections from the real world into his alternate one. 

       After the slightly confusing beginning and then getting a handle on exactly how this universe of world creating and parallel worlds--thought that I had a good handle on the story. but Jonathan's and Kylie story ended up taking a twist that I never saw coming and then after that twist resolved itself it was another huge one that I didn't even think to be a possible conclusion to the story

    So all in all even though there were some definite weird part and a few things that I didn't understand even at the end of the story I was really surprised and happy with the new spin that this premise took.

     I really enjoyed what Jonathan learned about himself and others through the exploration of the different worlds. although he was an unspeakable tragedy and lost a lot of his family he took the self pity and feeling invisible to a new level.

    He also learned a lot about life and even though he has some issues with school he still had hopes and dreams for something bigger for himself and he was pretty devastated when he thought that he messed that up

    Well a lot of the story does revolve around the romance between him and Kylie elect at the end took on an even bigger meaning and show that there was something more in this world then Jonathan Kylie and his grief.

    The title of the story also played into a lot of the messages of this book. feeling that happiness was going to simple as creating someone to love you or manipulating his world to give him what he thought was happiness. he could keep opening and closing world are changing the parameters all he wanted to try to make quote unquote a world just right. Rather he learned that you have to make the best from what life has given you and always look out that you might be able to help and encourage someone else.

   I loved how he put things he learned about himself and through others to make an ending that fits just right. I never saw the sacrifice coming, but I appreciated it so much.

Bottom Line: Interesting take on the boy who survived, and his ability to make alternate worlds.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
What would you base an alternate world based on?

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Review: We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach

We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach
Four high school seniors put their hopes, hearts, and humanity on the line as an asteroid hurtles toward Earth in this contemporary novel.
They always say that high school is the best time of your life.
Peter, the star basketball player at his school, is worried “they” might actually be right. Meanwhile Eliza can’t wait to escape Seattle—and her reputation—and perfect-on-paper Anita wonders if admission to Princeton is worth the price of abandoning her real dreams. Andy, for his part, doesn’t understand all the fuss about college and career—the future can wait.
Or can it? Because it turns out the future is hurtling through space with the potential to wipe out life on Earth. As these four seniors—along with the rest of the planet—wait to see what damage an asteroid will cause, they must abandon all thoughts of the future and decide how they’re going to spend what remains of the present.
Publishes in US: March 24th 2015 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genre: ya contemp
Source: Simon
Series? no

Buy it: preorder it at your local Indie bookstore, Barnes & Noble, or Amazon by clicking here. You can add it on GoodReads by clicking here

Author stalk away:  ~Visit his Tumblr
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    I wanted to read We All Looked Up because the idea of the teens really evaluating their life, what they are doing with it, and if they are happy about the direction in the face of a comet that might collide with the earth. 

    The characters are pretty varied. Peter is a jock who is also pretty smart, but his history teacher was asking questions about success and failure that really started his evaluating his life goals. Eliza from one incident of kissing Peter while he had a girlfriend and being caught, she has earned the reputation of a slut. She kind of embraces it, even though she hadn't been with guys before it felt like the whole school turned against her. She found out her dad had terminal cancer and then she started sleeping with random guys at an all ages club. She feels like life is just suffering on top of more suffering, and it has jaded her. 

    Andy is a slacker type, skate boards, smokes pot, absent from school a lot. His best friend BoBo is the ring leader and because of a big breach of trust in their friendship takes advantage of Andy now. Andy is connected to Peter through Bobo dating Peter's goth little sister Misery. He also has had a long time crush on Eliza, even before her "slut" time period. Anita is the fourth character, and she is under a lot of pressure from her Dad for her grades and her future. She feels like he views her as an investment and she doesn't want to disappoint him. But she dreams of being a singer, but that conflicts so much with his Ivy League plan for her. She sees Andy outside guidance one day and she was crying and he told her that whatever it was wasn't worth it, and that has stuck in her mind. 

   Ardor, the asteroid, is also another connection with them all. They all notice it when it appears as a blue star in the sky, and their lives becomes even more intertwined as the news of the possibility of hitting earth becomes more and more real, and larger a possibility. Anita goes after Andy and the lyrics and softer music that he's written but doesn't normally play because Bobo is more of a screamer. While Eliza takes her photography to the next level, snapping pictures at school and around town of the changes. The thieves and drug dealers are coming above ground, homicide is up, so the police presence has been elevated. She also gets pictures of kids from her school banding together, of Peter, who is trying to make more of a difference volunteering. 

    The plot was fast paced and the growth of the characters as well as the evolution of their relationships and realizations was driven by near certain death in double digit numbers to begin with and quickly hurling toward single.

    I was pretty satisfied by the way it ended although was sad at some of the losses. A few of the characters realized their dreams and goals while others were left with regrets and what if weighing heavily on their minds.

     I have read other books with the similar theme of days to live and end of the world approaching. This one was unique in that it also highlighted the decline in society and morals in time before. Yes there was a lot of unity towards the very last days but there were also really dark moments, showing the bad side of characters and others in society. I guess things like this will bring out the extremes.

Bottom Line: Interesting look at a group of high school students questioning their lives and choices in face of asteroid set to collide with earth.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
What would you change now or have changed in high school if you thought world might end

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Stacking the Shelves, The Sunday Post, Bought Borrowed and Bagged

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews,  check it out and sign up  here
The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~ It's a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.

Bought, Borrowed, & Bagged is a weekly meme, hosted by TalkSupe, where I share with you the books I have bought, borrowed, or bagged. Link up with me here.

Cureently reading:
Invincible (Invincible, #1)
source: Katherine Tegen Books

What I read:
Things We Know by Heart
source: HarperTeen
Hold Me Like a Breath (Once Upon a Crime Family, #1)
source: Bloomsbury
source: Hodder Children's Books
The Winner's Crime (The Winner's Trilogy, #2)
Source: library

Last Week on the blog:
The Start of Me and You
The Start of Me and You
Source: bloomsbury via netgalley
Thirty Sunsets
Thirty Sunsets
Source: library
New giveaways exclusive to my blog:
 Dare to Kiss by S. B. Alexander (US only, print copy) ends 4/10

Old ones:  Ebook Death Wish by Megan Tayte (Int) ends 4/12 

My week: Good. Couldn't get a break on the sick front, got bronchitis, but feeling better thanks to steroids and antibiotics. Spending today with friends in Charlotte playing board games and generally being nerds. Tomorrow (Sun) will be in Carrowinds riding some roller coasters.

What are you reading? Any of my books new to you or have you read any of my books? If so, what did you think?
Also, feel free to link up your blog and mailbox post.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Review: The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord
Following her pitch-perfect debut Open Road Summer, Emery Lord pens another gorgeous story of best friends, new love, & second chances.
It’s been a year since it happened—when Paige Hancock’s first boyfriend died in an accident. After shutting out the world for a year, Paige is finally ready for a second chance at high school . . . and she has a plan. First: Get her old crush, Ryan Chase, to date her—the perfect way to convince everyone she’s back to normal. Next: Join a club—simple, it’s high school after all. But when Ryan’s sweet, nerdy cousin, Max, moves to town and recruits Paige for the Quiz Bowl team (of all things!) her perfect plan is thrown for a serious loop. Will Paige be able to face her fears and finally open herself up to the life she was meant to live?
Brimming with heartfelt relationships and authentic high-school dynamics. The Start of Me and You proves that it’s never too late for second chances.


Publishes in US: March 31st 2015 by Bloomsbury
Source: bloomsbury via netgalley
Series? no
review of 1st Lord book

Buy it:  B&N online! Via Amazon

Author stalk away: ~site 
Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket


    I wanted to read this because I enjoyed emerys first book. Also books that deal with the aftermath of grief ate speaking to me as is the promise of a sweet and nerdy love interest.

    I adored that friendship and family were featured asking with the introspective healing and handling fears and the way grief changes the main character throughout. I grew up very xml lose with my grandma and really related with her wanting to share her secrets and get advice. Her grandma like mine is dealing with memory loss and it is hard to see someone you love dealing with those types of health issues and the fear that you might have to watch them forget who you are.

    I liked that she was organized and goal oriented. Her list has things that she believes will stretch her and hopefully guide her back to some sense of normalcy and happiness after tragedy.
I liked Paige`s character and I connected with her pretty well. She has several things going on that makes her story have an emotional impact. She is recovering from the accidental drowning of her boyfriend. Its left a pretty big impact on her. She hasn't nightmares about drowning and she doesn't do anything near standing water now. There's also her parents who were divorced and she was actually kind of relieved because of their fighting... she just saw that they made each other miserable. But now they're dating again and she is afraid that it will happen again.

    I like how friendship was a big theme in this book. however having three best friends was kind of overwhelming for me at times. The girls all have different personalities, different ways that they met Paige and different families difficulties of their own. So not really sure why I had such a hard time remembering which was which unless it's just the case of being handed too many characters all at once.

    The romance was pretty sweet. I like that she had a crush on Ryan even before he was popular. I even like her reasoning behind it because she had seen him with his sister who had cancer and he was dancing shamelessly in the middle of the grocery store just to make her laugh. Ever since then she has harbored the crush on him. But in the process of trying out new things in order to help her have a better year and also wanting to get closer to Ryan she starts falling for his very nerdy but also very sweet cousin Max.

    I love her friendship with Max and even though it started out as a reason just to get closer to Ryan, they developed a deeper bond and a trust that I really loved. It was the best kind of slow burning romance I adore and every time that there is nerdy love, of course, I have to be all over it. My husband's one of the more nerdy type so Max reminds me a lot of him. I love how he listens without judgement and how he made her feel so comfortable and that he opened up to her as well.

    There's a pretty big fight between them and I was really anxious about if things will be able to be patched up between them and it was hard to see how much careless words can really damage another person. I think it made the story super realistic, especially when we find out why Max was having more distance between them after and Paige was trying to be grown up about it.

   I really connected with Paige as she continued her closeness with her grandma. Her grandma has Alzheimer's and she also had a stroke and it sounds just so much like my grandma who I lost a few years ago that it just made my heart ache. I love how Paige trusted her and talked to her about everything and it just really makes me miss the days that I had with my grandma and the time that we had and how I felt that she understood me better than so many other people.

    I really liked how much Paige's character grew throughout the story. She learned so much about herself and how to move on after the tragedies of life. She learned to let new people in and she also kept supporting the friends that she had had for years. She realized how much in friendship and with family you're supposed to depend on one another and share each others problem. With that, the punch card is never full because you bear their burdens as well. I think that the loss of her boyfriend Aaron will always shape some of the ways that she looks at life but I like how she realized that it didn't have to define her and that she could move on from her fears a little bit at a time. Also that she can keep his memory alive with others who also misses him.
   I really like tells the story ended-- how things were wrapped up but also that we had room in our own imaginations to make more of a future and relationship with the characters that we had met. I definitely wouldn't mind another book about Paige and Max although I doubt that there will be one. But maybe they'll be a companion novel about one of her friends and will get a peek into what becomes of them after their summers and finally admitting things to themselves and each other.

Bottom Line: Emotional story that focuses on friendship, family, love and loss.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
Did you ever do quiz bowl?

Exclusive Giveaway and Spotlight: Dare to Kiss by S. B. Alexander

Dare to Kiss by S. B. Alexander

Besides her family, Lacey Robinson’s only other love is baseball. She’s on top of the world when Arizona State University approaches her to discuss a scholarship. To be the first girl ever to grace a college boys’ team is beyond what she has ever dreamed. Her fastball is impeccable, her curveball equally as good, and her slider annihilates anyone who dares to step in the batter’s box. But fate has its own way of throwing curveballs. When she looses her mother and sister to a home invasion, baseball and her dreams die with them. Tragedy has a way of seeping deep into her psyche, causing nightmares, panic attacks and blackouts. Diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, her psychiatrist recommends a change of scenery and picking up the things that she loved to do, and for Lacey that is baseball. After a move clear across the country, only two things matter to Lacey—overcome her PTSD and make Kensington High’s baseball team. But trying out for the team comes with obstacles—the captain, Aaron Seever, doesn’t want a girl on the team. Her life is further complicated when she meets Kade Maxwell, a tall, sexy and drool-worthy bad boy who has a magical touch that awakens her feminine side and a kiss that slowly erases her nightmares. But getting involved with him may be dangerous when Kade’s archenemy returns to town to settle a vendetta. To complicate matters, her PTSD has taken a turn for the worse. She has to find a way to heal otherwise she may not have a chance at anything in life, especially love.

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< Author Biography of S.B. Alexander S. B. Alexander’s passion for writing began when she read her first Stephen King novel, The Shining. Over the years she kept telling family and friends she was going to write a book. Fifteen years later, on the advice of a friend, she sat down and wrote her first novel. One year later, she published two novels with three more slotted for release. Her books are targeted toward the young adult and new adult markets. Her young adult series, Vampire SEALS, includes two books, On the Edge of Humanity, and On the Edge of Eternity, which have garnered high praise from readers. Dare to Kiss is the first book in her new adult series. Alexander’s career has been colorful—a former navy veteran, high school math teacher and college professor, sales consultant, coach, and manager. She loves baseball, especially the Boston Red Sox. She enjoys playing golf, is moved by music and great stories, and will go out of her way to help people. She currently works full time in Corporate America and writes any chance she gets. She believes words are the key to opening the door to extraordinary places with amazing characters that tell a great story. Author’s personal experience with PTSD leads to New Adult novel S.B. Alexander releasing first book in new romance series this September SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Author S.B. Alexander has drawn on a childhood experience and her love of baseball to inspire her New Adult fiction romance, Dare to Kiss (September 30, 2014). Dare to Kiss is the story of Lacey Robinson, whose two loves are baseball and her family. When her mother and sister are killed in a home invasion, Lacey’s baseball dreams die with them. The tragedy seeps into her psyche, causing nightmares, panic attacks and blackouts. Diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, her psychiatrist recommends a change of scenery and picking up the things that she loved to do. For Lacey, that’s baseball. She moves across the country with two goals—to overcome her PTSD and make Kensington High’s baseball team. But trying out for the team comes with complications—the captain, Aaron Seever, doesn’t want a girl on the team. Her life is further complicated when she meets Kade Maxwell, a tall, sexy and drool-worthy bad boy who has a magical touch that awakens her feminine side and a kiss that slowly erases her nightmares. But getting involved with him may be dangerous when Kade’s arch-nemesis returns to town to settle a vendetta. “The story developed from something that happened to me when I was a child,” Alexander said. “And from that experience the story unfolded. The message in the story: With the right help and people around you, a person might be able to overcome PTSD. I’m not saying they will, but taking the right steps can certainly help to heal some of the symptoms associated with PTSD. I will never get the image of my experience out of my head, but I’m not afraid anymore.” Dare to Kiss is the first book in The Maxwell Series. Alexander has also written a thrilling young adult series, Vampire SEALS, which has drawn praise from fans across the world. Alexander is a former navy veteran, high school math teacher and college professor. She currently works as a corporate sales manager, but is always looking for her next story, character or scenery.

Giveaway is for: Dare to Kiss by S. B. Alexander (US only, print copy)
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