The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson | Review

Title: The Unexpected Everything

 

Author: Morgan Matson

 

Release Date: May 3rd, 2016

 

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Description from Goodreads:
Andie has a plan. And she always sticks to her plan.
 
Future? A top-tier medical school.
Dad? Avoid him as much as possible (which isn’t that hard considering he’s a Congressman and he’s never around). 
Friends? Palmer, Bri, and Toby – pretty much the most awesome people on the planet, who need’s anyone else?
Relationships? No one’s worth more than three weeks.
 
So it’s no surprise that Andie’s got her summer all planned out too.
 
Until a political scandal costs Andie her summer pre-med internship, and lands both she and Dad back in the sam house together for the first time in years. Suddenly she’s doing things that aren’t Andie at all – working as a dog walker, doing an epic scavenger hunt with her dad, and maybe, just maybe, letting the super cute Clark get closer than she expected. Palmer, Bri and Toby tell her to embrace all the chaos, but can she really let go of her control?

Continue reading “The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson | Review”

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How To Keep a Boy From Kissing You | Blog Tour | Review

Title: How To Keep a Boy From Kissing You

Author: Tara Eglington

Release Date: October 25th, 2016

Rating: 3 Stars

I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, this does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review in any way.
Description:
Sweet sixteen and never been kissed – and that’s the way Aurora Skye wants it to be. She’s too busy finding guys for her two best friends, counselling her sensitive New Age dad (the NAD), and dealing with the unexpected return of her long-absent mom. But always in the background there’s Hayden Paris, the boy next door, the bane of Aurora’s existence. Smart, funny, and always around toes her at her worst, he ‘gets’ her like no-one else… and that’s what makes him so intriguing.

When Aurora and Hayden are coerced into the lead roles in the school production of Much Ado About Nothing, things can only get worse. How is Aurora going to save her first kiss for the secret admirer who wooed her with poetry and a spectacular bunch of flowers on Valentine’s Day is she doesn’t know who he is and she’s obligated to lock lips with Hayden in the play’s final dramatic clinch?

Aurora’s clever manœuvres keep her away from kisses, but they can’t seem to bring her any closer to her secret admirer – a potential prince. A humorous take on the trials and tribulations of crushes, secret admirers, and first loves, How To Keep a Boy From Kissing You will keep you laughing up until the page.

This title totally intrigued me, because usually in YA books the aim is to get a boy kissing you, not to stop it from happening.
The first thing that hit me when I started reading How To Keep a Boy From Kissing You was that it definitely has an immature tone. The girls are not the most mature group of friends in the world, and Aurora has a serious drama queen, over the top thing going on, and to be honest it did get on my nerves a bit. After just going with it and reading through the annoying, I got over it, but there were still times when the annoying picked up again.
Despite the two new boys who arrived on the scene, it took literally minutes of reading for me to figure out that Aurora and Hayden were clearly going to be romantically linked. It was also pretty clear that Hayden liked Aurora, and Aurora’s deep and OTT hatred for Hayden was just bizarre! 
Despite the immaturity and other issues I had with the book, I did still enjoy reading it. It’s not something I think I’ll feel the need to read again, but I did enjoy it while I was reading. I’d recommend it if you’re looking for YA set in high school with a bit of Shakespeare action, and of course the romance!

About The Author

Tara Ellington grew up in Byron Bay, Australia. Her hobbies when she’s not writing include watching endless cat videos on YouTube, planning pretend holidays to the Maldives, and day-dreaming about who would play Hayden Paris in a film adaptation of How To Keep a Boy From Kissing You. The novel’s sequel will be published in 2017.
‘How To Keep a Boy From Kissing You’ by Tara Eglington
3 Stars

Confessions of a Wedding Planner | Blog Tour | Review

Title: Confessions of a Wedding Planner

Author: Michelle Jo Quinn

Release Date: July 26th, 2016

Rating: 3.5 Stars

Amazon

I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, this does not effect my opinion of the book or the content of my review in any way.
Description from Goodreads:
He may be the best man, but he’s the worst man for her…

Wedding planner, Veronica Soto-Stewart believes everyone deserves a fairy tale – even her ex-boyfriend. Unable to refuse his request, and with the help of of Bliss Events motley crew, she finds herself creating the most magical even for the perfect couple.

But nothing is ever perfect…

Levi Laurent can’t believe his luck. Thanks to his best friend’s wedding, he finally has a shot at the woman he’s always wanted – Veronica. From San Fransisco to Paris, and back, he pulls out all the stops, so she knows where she really belongs – with him. But Veronica wants nothing to with the rich, sexy, irresistible playboy.

Can Levi convince Veronica that her perfect happily ever after is closer than she ever realised?

I am a sucker for anything wedding related, so the title of this book 100% hooked me and drew me in. The synopsis added to that so I’m so glad that I got to review Confessions of a Wedding Planner for the blog tour!
Nica is a wedding planner who takes her job very seriously, and she somehow ends up agreeing to plan her ex-boyfriends wedding to the woman he left her for. I’m just going to put it out there that that is not something I would ever do. I was with Chase, Nica’s best friend, on this and thought she should have said no. But she said yes, and the story goes from there.
Jake – the ex – is a doctor and good looking, and he has an equally gorgeous best friend, who turned out to be French, Levi. Levi is the classic gorgeous guy with a bad-boy, man-whore vibe. I thought that it was pretty clear that there was going to be some sort of relationship between Nica and Levi, you can’t hate a gorgeous man so passionately in a contemporary romance and not end up having the other kind of feelings for him too.
So yes there was a slight predictability to Confessions of a Wedding Planner, but it didn’t sully my enjoyment of the book. I read the book pretty quickly in the space of an afternoon, it was a really easy and enjoyable read, made so by the style of writing, which I ate up.
I loved that the book didn’t stay static in San Fransisco, we got to go to Paris, which was a brilliant setting for the Nica/Levi budding relationship. I also loved that Nica, while somewhat a pushover when it came to Jake and his fiancé Sandrine, stood up to Levi and got all powerful woman on his ass!!
I found the book really entertaining and humorous at times, and loved the relationships between Nica, Chase and Levi. One of the only things that really bugged me was the fact that Nica set out to try and win Jake back, I’m not particularly about that and I’m of the opinion that if it is so very very over, like Nica and Jake were, you’ve got to just accept and move on.
I would have loved to have had Levi’s narrative in the book too! I’m a fan of split-narrative in books, and definitely think it could have worked in this book!
I would definitely recommend Confessions of a Wedding Planner, its a really enjoyable contemporary romance, and while it doesn’t break any literary boundaries, it is seriously enjoyable and definitely worth the read!

About The Author

Michelle’s love for writing blossomed when her father gave her a diary, but instead of recounting her daily life, she wrote stories of fictional people. Like most of her characters, she believes in happily ever after. Naturally, she finds harmony in writing romance. She enjoys creating stories that make readers laugh, cry and fall in love.
An unabashed, self-proclaimed foodie, Michelle loves to try new food whenever she travels. She once had triple creme brie and duck rillette for lunch on top of Grouse Mountain.
She lives in Ontario, Canada with her husband, two kids and a pup named Scarlet.
‘Confessions of a Wedding Planner’ by Michelle Jo Quinn
3.5 Stars

Confessions of an Undercover Girlfriend | Blog Tour | Review | Giveaway |

Title: Confessions of an Undercover Girlfriend

Author: Kay Marie

Release Date: October 11th, 2016

4 Stars

I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review, this does not effect my opinion of the book or the content of my review in any way.
Description from Goodreads:
So, I’m no longer a virgin sex columnist – thank you, Ollie – but if I thought that was going to make my life easier, boy was I wrong! John is back in town determined to win my forgiveness. Blythe is more ready than ever to take me down. Bridget is totally onto the new twinkle in my eye. And, well, Ollie is just as distractingly delicious as usual.

So, naturally, I have a few more confessions to make.

Confessions #1: I came up with what I thought would be the perfect plan to keep my relationship with Ollie a secret – pretend to get back together with John!

Confession #2: It backfired. A lot.

| Amazon |

I really enjoyed the first Confessions book, Confessions of a Virgin Sex Columnist, I was lucky enough to take part in that tour too and you can find my review of book one here! I’d definitely recommend picking up book one before diving into Confessions of a Virgin Sex Columnist, but it’s such a great book you won’t regret it!
In my review of Confessions of a Virgin Sex Columnist I made it pretty clear that I liked Skye, and hated that the book had ended! Book two gave me more Skye and her clumsy shenanigans, and I got a resolution to the way book one ended!
After reading both books I can happily say that I am a fan of Kay Marie’s writing style. She gets me hooked immediately and I end up devouring the book in less than a day. I found that Confessions #1 made me laugh out loud, and I am happy to report that Confessions of an Undercover Girlfriend had the same effects! 
A character that I particularly enjoyed in this book was Blythe. In the first book she’s pretty nasty and determined to get rid of Skye, whether that be from wok or her brother’s personal life. I would say that Blythe undergoes that largest character growth over the two books, and she ended up being one my favourites! 
Kay Marie writes brilliant characters and they all just worked so well together, although Bridget can be loud and opinionated, at some points overly so, we also saw the calm and caring side to her. The only character I hands down did not like was John, but that was pretty much guaranteed!
I would highly recommend going out and picking up Kay Marie’s Confessions books if you haven’t already, they are incredibly enjoyable New Adult reads, and they aren’t overly smutty which is really refreshing!
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About The Author

Bestselling author Kaitlyn Davis writes young adult fantasy novels under the name Kaitlyn Davis and contemporary romance novels under the name Kay Marie.

Always blessed with an overactive imagination, Kaitlyn has been writing since she picked up her first crayon and is overjoyed to share her for with the world. When she’s not daydreaming, typing stories, or getting lost in fictional worlds, Kaitlyn can be found indulging in some puppy videos, watching a little too much television, or spending time with her family. If you have any questions for her – about her books, about scheduling an even, or just in general – you may contact her at: KaitlynDavisBooks@gmail.com

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | Wattpad | Pinterest | YouTube | Goodreads


‘Confessions of an Undercover Girlfriend’ by Kay Marie
4 Stars

The Possibility of Somewhere by Julia Day | Blog Tour | Review

Title: The Possibility of Somewhere

Author: Julia Day

Release Date: September 6th, 2016

3.75 Stars

Goodreads | Amazon

Description from Goodreads:
Together is somewhere they long to be. 
Ash Gupta has a life full of possibility. His senior year is going exactly as he always wanted – he’s admired by his peers, enjoying his classes and getting the kind of grades that his wealthy, immigrant parents expect. There’s only one obstacle in Ash’s path: Eden Moore – the senior most likely to become class valedictorian. How could this unpopular, sharp-tongued girl from the wrong side of the tracks stand in his way? 

All Eden’s ever wanted was a way out. Her perfect GPA should be enough to guarantee her a free ride to college – and an exit from her trailer-park existence for good. The last thing she needs is a bitter rivalry with Ash, who wants a prized scholarship for his own selfish reasons. Or so she thinks… When Eden ends up working with Ash on a class project, she discovers that the two have mor win common than either of them could have imagines. They’re both in pursuit of a dream – one that feels within reach thanks to their new connection. But what does the future hold for two passionate souls from totally different worlds?
The Possibility of Somewhere could not have come at a better time; I was in a deep deep contemporary reading place when I picked this book up. I made my way through a considerable amount of Young and New Adult contemporary novels over a short period of time, one of which being The Possibility of Somewhere.

I enjoyed the diversity between Ash and Eden, they were both from extremely different backgrounds, yet are both intelligent with similar aspirations. The relationship between Ash and Eden was enjoyable to see grow and develop, from barely speaking unless forced to in group projects, to sharing a clandestine relationship. They were a couple that I definitely liked, I wouldn’t go so far as to say they’re my favourite OTP, because that would be a vast overstatement. However while I was reading I wanted them to succeed in their relationship and overcome the obstacles in their way.

Speaking of obstacles, I understand that are people that view people from different cultures and races in the way that some characters did in The Possibility of Somewhere (I’m talking about the racism and prejudice), however it’s really not something I’ve ever experienced or witnessed. Therefore I found the blatant racism expressed by some of the characters an intriguing element to the setting, because really, how can people still think like that?! So I suppose part of the reason I liked Ash and Eden together was that they were pushing and crossing the racial boundaries (cliques in which people of the same race stick together) set within their town and school.

I also liked Eden’s friend, Mundy. She added to Eden’s character and therefore as a reader I was able to see the growth of Eden. While I did like Mundy and Eden’s friendship, I found that the conversation between them, and various other characters, was annoying. I was not particularly fond of the dialogue style, in my opinion it was rather stilted and appeared random at times. While it in no way stopped me reading the book, it did bug me.

I would recommend reading The Possibility of Somewhere, I think the storyline is important; a book advocating diversity and challenging prejudices.

If you’ve read The Possibility of Somewhere let me know what you thought in the comments!

‘The Possibility of Somewhere’ by Julia Day
3.75 Stars

The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski | Review

        Title: The Winner’s Kiss

       Author: Marie Rutkoski

      Release Date: March 24th, 2016


I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, this does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review in any way.
Description from Goodreads:
War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it with untrustworthy new allies and the empire as his enemy. Though he has convinced himself that he no longer loves Kestrel, Arin hasn’t forgotten her, or how she became exactly the kind of person he has always despised. She cared more for the empire than she did for the lives of innocent people – and certainly more than she did for him.

At least, that’s what he thinks.

In the frozen north, Kestrel is a prisoner in a brutal work camp. As she searches desperately for a way to escape, she wishes Arin could know what she sacrificed for him. She wishes she could make the empire pay for what they’ve done to her. 

But no one gets what they want just by wishing. 

As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover that the world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and they are caught in between. With so much to lose, can anybody really win?

I feel like I’ve been on a long and extreme emotional journey at the hands of Marie Rutkoski. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, The Winner’s Trilogy is one of my favourite series of all time. I fell in love with Arin and Kestrel in The Winner’s Curse, my love continued to grow in The Winner’s Crime (which you can read about in my review) and it grew some more in the final instalment of the fantastic series, The Winner’s Kiss.

The Winner’s Crime had an oh my gosh cliffhanger, it left me with so many feels that I had to try and sort out! All I wanted from The Winner’s Kiss was some sort of resolution! Obviously I wanted Arin and Kestrel together, but it got to the point where I just wanted Arin to stop hating and denying his love for Kestrel, and Kestrel to get out of the work camp.

Because yes, Kestrel is in a work camp, where she is drugged into a shadow of her former self. And for anyone who’s read the previous books you’ll know that Kestrel is witty and intelligent, while not capable in battle she uses her intelligence and brain to outwit her opponents. This makes her a really interesting character, the political intrigue within all of the books within the trilogy makes them highly enjoyable, and there’s always an element of what the hell is going to happen next.

The Winner’s Kiss is a low fantasy, there isn’t magic or fae like some fantasies that I’ve read, but the relationships and the world building in these books are just something else! Throughout all three of the books Marie Rutkoski has crafted a vivid world, and I’m not sure I’m ready for the series to be over!

Arin and Kestrel are possibly my favourite OTP of all time, and I think it’s safe to say that I ship them!! My love for The Winner’s Trilogy has had me telling everyone left, right and centre to read these books! It’s got to the point I hands down want to play Kestrel in any adaptation (a girl can dream!)

In my opinion The Winner’s Kiss was the perfect end to the trilogy, everything got wrapped up and I was not disappointed by this fantastic conclusion!

Have you read any of the books in the series? Let me know what you thought in the comments!

‘The Winner’s Kiss’ by Marie Rutkoski
5 Stars

Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn | Review

     Title: Firsts

     Author: Laurie Elizabeth Flynn

     Release Date: January 5th, 2016

I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, this does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review in any way.
Description from Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old Mercedes Ayres has an open-door policy when it comes to her bedroom, but only if the guy fulfils a specific criteria: he has to be a virgin. Mercedes lets the boys get their awkward, fumbling first times over with, and all she asks in return is that they give their girlfriends the perfect first time – the kind Mercedes never had herself. 

Keeping what goes on in her bedroom a secret has been easy – so far. Her absentee mother isn’t home nearly enough to know about Mercedes’ extracurricular activities, and her uber-religious best friend, Angela, won’t even say the word “sex” until she gets married . But Mercedes doesn’t bank on Angela’s boyfriend finding out about her services and wanting a turn – or on Zach, who likes her for who she is instead of what she can do in bed.

When Mercedes’ perfect system falls apart, she has to find a way to salvage her reputation and figure out where her heart really belongs in the process. Funny, smart, and true-to-life, Firsts is a one-of-a-kind Young Adult novel about growing up.

Mercy leads a life very different to mine, in fact her life is pretty much the opposite to mine. Her relationship with her mother is pretty much zero, whereas my mum and are stupid close and I tell her pretty much everything. And Mercy has a very different view on sex than I do, while I’m not about to go sprouting my views to you all, I will say that I would never want to sleep with someone who had a girlfriend, and I’m definitely more of a relationship girl than a ‘Wednesday Friend’. For those of you who haven’t read Firsts, you’re probably wondering what the hell I’m going on about, well Mercy has a standing Wednesday lunchtime bedroom appointment with Zach, her ‘Wednesday Friend’. I really liked Zach, he’s after a relationship with Mercy, and he sticks around. And really, who doesn’t like a guy who sticks around and tries to be a damn good friend, and perhaps even more?
Mercy justifies her de-virgining through creating perfect first times for the unknowing girlfriends, as she had as far from a perfect first time as possible. The details of Mercy’s first time aren’t revealed until very late on in the novel, but throughout small hints and clues are revealed, so I had a pretty good idea of what had happened. This may be annoying for some, because there wasn’t really that much mystery once one or two hints had been made, but it didn’t bother me too much.
I don’t know about anyone else but I thought it was pretty obvious that Charlie was into Mercy, that Charlie was a creep and inappropriately hitting on Mercy, especially considering he’s dating her best friend. In fact I got shushed quite a few times from my family due to my loud reactions. But in my defence, does verbally reacting to a book show engagement and enjoyment or what?! So I didn’t like Charlie, and I wanted Mercy to catch on and not like or trust Charlie too, because then there would have been a lot less mess! Charlie was a complete tool and a really horrible guy, and he went ahead and did something awful, and he was probably the only character that I didn’t like in the whole book, and seeing as he’s meant to be disliked, I’d say well done Flynn.
Faye became the friend that Mercedes really needed through all the drama, she stood up for her and stayed by her, and I ended up really liking her. In fact part of me wanted the sexual tension and flirtation to mean more and become more. In my opinion that would have been a nice little twist to the book, the girl who takes boys virginities ends up with the beautiful and confident new girl.
Firsts is all about character growth and development, both of which are things that I saw Mercedes undergo through the novel, and don’t we all just love a bit of character growth?! In my opinion Flynn created some very likeable characters, I ended up really caring about Mercy and I wanted to see her happy, and oh boy did I want to drag Angela away from the creep she called a boyfriend! 
I found Firsts to be a very enjoyable and quick read, I broke the Kindle back out for this book, and I’m glad that I did! 
Have you read Firsts? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!
‘Firsts’ by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
4 Stars