Top Ten Books I’ve Read So Far In 2015

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This feature is hosted by the ladies of The Broke and the Bookish

This week, I had to compile my list of the top books I’ve read in 2015. It was pretty easy since I haven’t had a lot of amazing reads this year.

I divided up my list by genre, because I’m really detail oriented.

Go see what books I listed this week!

Contemporary
My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga 
-This book surprised me in the best way possible. I loved it and gave it 5 stars-
Paperweight by Meg Haston
-This book is a book that will stay with me for a very long time. I gave this book 5 stars-
The Revenge Playbook by Rachael Allen
-Girl power! I loved this book so much. It enraged me, it made me laugh and it made me cry. I gave this book 5 stars-
Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli 
This book may be my favorite LGBT book of the year. So adorable & nerdy. I gave this book 5 stars-
Made You Up by Francesca Zappia
This book broke my heart into a thousand teeny pieces. I loved this book so hard and I gave it 5 stars-
The Devil You Know by Trish Doller
-This book utterly terrified me. It was so different than Doller’s previous books, but so awesome. I gave it 5 stars- 

Fantasy
The Orphan Queen (The Orphan Queen #1) by Jodi Meadows
-It started off slowly, but I began to fall in love with it right around page 60. I gave it 4.5 stars-
The Wrath and the Dawn (The Wrath and the Dawn #1) by Renee Ahdieh
-THIS BOOK, GUYS! Oh my goodness, I adored this book. It was gorgeously written and had a swoon-worthy guy. I gave it 5 stars-
A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Sarah J. Maas
-Is there such a thing as heart eyes? Because this book, and particularly Lucien and Rhysand GAVE ME ALL THE SWOONS! I gave this book 5 stars-

Science Fiction
NIL Unlocked (NIL #2) by Lynne Matson
-So freaking fabulous. I adore this series and it just keeps getting better. I gave this book 5 stars-

Let me know if any of the books on my list are also on your list. Don’t forget to leave the links to your TTT list this week.

Review: Rebound (Boomerang #2) by Noelle August

Book Title: Rebound
Author: Noelle August
Published Date: February 10th, 2015
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Genre: NA Contemporary Romance
Series: Book Two in Boomerang Trilogy
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Hooking up is only the beginning of the fun in this sexy and irresistible second installment of the thrilling New Adult series, Boomerang.
Adam Blackwood has it all. At twenty-two, he’s fabulously wealthy, Ryan Gosling-hot and at the top of the heap in the business world. His life is perfect, until a scandal from his past resurfaces and knocks the tech wunderkind down, throwing his company, Boomerang, a hook-up site for millennials, into chaos.
Three years ago, Adam married his high school love—and then lost her in a tragic accident. Now, the heartbreak and guilt he’s tried to bury with work and women begins to take over his life.
Alison Quick, the twenty-one-year-old daughter of a business tycoon—and the very ex-girlfriend of Boomerang’s former intern, Ethan—has a problem of her own. She’s got one chance to prove to her father that she deserves a place in his empire by grabbing control of Boomerang and taking Adam down.
But as Alison moves in on him, armed with a cadre of lawyers and accountants, she discovers there’s much more to Adam and Boomerang than meets the eye. Will earning her father’s approval come at the price of losing her first real love? It appears so, unless Adam can forgive her for wrecking his life and trying to steal his livelihood. But Alison hopes that old adage is right. Maybe love can conquer all.
Disclaimer: I received this e-ARC from William Morrow Paperbacks via Edelweiss in exchange for my honest review.
Review:
You guys know that I am normally so picky about my NA reads and how rarely I read NA because they disappoint me so much. Yet last year, right about this time, I reviewed Boomerang, which is the first book in the Boomerang trilogy. I fell in love with this book because they didn’t follow a typical NA formula that I had become so used to.
When I heard this book was going to be about Ethan’s ex, Allison and Ethan’s former boss, Adam, I was a little nervous to see how it would all play out. I didn’t expect to like Allison given what we had learned about her in Boomerang. Surprise, surprise, I ended up really liking her. She was in a tough position as her father was very powerful and used to getting his way through manipulation. Allison also loved horses, and I loved reading about how she cared for the horses her father owned.
Adam was a difficult one for me to warm up to. I didn’t love him in Boomerang, so I was hoping I’d love him in Rebound. I ended up liking him more and more as the book went on. He complimented Allison quite well. Where she was weakest, he was strongest. Where she was strongest, he was weakest.
That Catwoman/Zorro scene at the beginning of the book was H-O-T.
We also learn a lot about Adam’s past, which I loved. I didn’t know what to expect with his past, but when certain things revealed themselves, it was clear to me that he was still struggling mightly, but he was hiding it from so many people. Hiding things is so unhealthy and I felt bad for Adam, and really wanted him to find that happy ending.
I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I enjoyed Boomerang. It took me awhile to like Adam, and certain other things kinda bugged me about this book. I do still recommend not only this book, but the first book in this trilogy. I’ll be giving it 4 stars.

SST: The Revenge Playbook by Rachael Allen

Welcome to the Sunday Street Team! This awesome idea was one that Nori of Readwritelove28 came up with and I jumped at the chance to be a part of it.
Today, I have Rachael Allen’s sophomore release, The Revenge Playbook. I reviewed this book last month, but in case you missed it, keep scrolling and you can read it below.
Goodreads

Synopsis

In this poignant and hilarious novel, Rachael Allen brilliantly explores the nuances of high school hierarchies, the traumas sustained on the path to finding true love, and the joy of discovering a friend where you least expect.

Don’t get mad, get even!

In the small town of Ranburne, high school football rules and the players are treated like kings. How they treat the girls they go to school with? That’s a completely different story. Liv, Peyton, Melanie Jane, and Ana each have their own reason for wanting to teach the team a lesson—but it’s only when circumstances bring them together that they come up with the plan to steal the one thing the boys hold sacred. All they have to do is beat them at their own game.


Brimming with sharp observations and pitch-perfect teen voices, fans of Jenny Han and Sarah Mlynowski are sure to fall head-over-heels for this sharp tale—by the author of 17 First Kisses—about the unexpected roads that can lead you to finding yourself.

Review:
I loved Allen’s first book, 17 First Kisses, and I wasn’t sure if this book would live up to it, but it did. In a really big way. Like with 17 First Kisses, I was expecting something light and fluffy, but what I got was a book chock full of girl power, and some hard topics of conversation.

It has always been a big complaint of mine that high school athletes get special treatment. They get a pass on bad behavior, they get extensions on homework assignments, even when the non-athletes have asked for them for a legitimate reason and they don’t get them. It’s like they get privileges that other students don’t get. 

Like they are the “golden boys”

Out of the four girls, Ana, Melanie Jane, Liv and Peyton, I think I liked Peyton the most. I related to her in a way that I couldn’t relate to to the other three. She had special considerations due to her ADHD and she constantly tried to alert the teachers and the rest of the staff that she needed the boys (the football players) to stop bothering her so she could concentrate.

Did they punish the football players? Of course not.

Did they punish her by making her move so she wouldn’t be so distracted? Absolutely.

I don’t think I’ve been this angry over a book in a very long time. I was livid, actually more than livid if there is such a thing. It was the treatment of Peyton that enraged me the most.

Then we move on to Liv who has not had sex with her boyfriend, but she’s still called a slut by a lot of the boys.

We have Melanie Jane who has sworn to remain a virgin until her wedding night. She used to be best friends with Ana until something changed between them.

Ana is hiding a secret. A secret that will devastate her family. She’s choosing to keep it from them because when she tried to report it to the school & the law enforcement officers, she was told that she needed to keep it to herself or else one of the boys would lose his football scholarship.

When I read that part, I was furious. This is why so many high school girls are terrified to report any incidence of assault. They know that nothing will happen to the football players and other sports participants because they are athletes and are exempt from punishment. Schools need to stop treating these boys like they are a gift to mankind. Treat them as you would any other student, even if that means *gasp* punishing them.

These four girls have some similarities, but also a lot of differences, but the way they come together to fight back against the sexism and the misogyny surrounding the school, and most specifically the football team. They wanted nothing more than to beat the boys at their own game, even embarrassing them.

The presence of a list was also made known to the girls. This list is written by the BMOC (Big Man On Campus) Chad McAllister. It informs the rest of the football team that certain girls aren’t worthy of them for various reasons (all of which have to do with either their looks or the fact that they haven’t put out)

Barf.

Basically if you have a girlfriend who is on the list, you need to cut her loose. For the good of the team & its image of course. This was another scene where I had to literally get up and walk away from my Kindle because I was literally shaking with rage.

I loved the friendships that developed in this book. I loved how Melanie Jane wasn’t ridiculed for being a virgin. I loved how despite their different home lives, and interests, they still managed to form a friendship. This entire book was awesome, but the ending was amazing, and I cried buckets because of certain things that happen at the end that I don’t want to spoil for those of you who haven’t read it yet.

Just please read it. I actually feel like this book needs to be in classrooms, especially high school classrooms. It’s a must read for all teenagers and even school faculty. I loved this book for the messages it sent and for the powerful friendships that developed. I’ll be giving it 5 stars and I cannot wait to get a finished copy of this book.

Author Bio

Rachael Allen lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband, two children, and two sled dogs. In addition to being a YA writer, she’s also a mad scientist, a rabid Falcons fan, an expert dare list maker, and a hugger. Rachael is the author of 17 FIRST KISSES.
Giveaway

Review: P. S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #2) by Jenny Han

Book Title: P. S. I Still Love You
Author: Jenny Han
Published Date: May 26th, 2015
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genre: YA Contemporary 
Series: Book Two in To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before duology
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.

Disclaimer: Library book.

Review:
I feel so conflicted about this book guys. I mean, I absolutely LOVED To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, so I had every reason to believe that I would feel the same about P. S. I Still Love You. I’m utterly conflicted because while I enjoyed a lot of the book, I didn’t feel the same way about this one as I had in the first one.

Lara Jean was maddening in a lot of the book this time around. Sometimes she would be really awesome and mature and then sometimes she would show exactly how sheltered she had been for so long. 

She seemed to not think very highly of herself as a person and that really showed when she obsessed about Peter’s ex, Genevieve and the fact that she had bigger boobs and the fact that Gen and Peter had had sex before. Lara Jean seemed so hung up on the sex thing even though Peter never even mentioned it until she did. It was obvious to me that she wondered why Peter was with her.

Peter wasn’t entirely blameless himself though. Look I have no issues with exes being friends as long as there are boundaries set in place. Peter clearly had issues establishing boundaries with Gen and it was infuriating and I felt bad for poor Lara Jean. She was trying so hard in the relationship, but it didn’t feel like Peter was trying as hard as he could have. Yes, as it turns out Gen was having family problems, but Peter shouldn’t have been her confidant anymore.

It was the adult characters that really struck a chord with me this time around. Stormy and Alicia and Mrs. Rothschild all had words of wisdom for the often naive Lara Jean.
“You’ll go about your day and you will miss him at first, but over time it will ease.” -Alicia

I think it was really important for Lara Jean to hear this because despite the fact the breakup was Peter’s fault, she was definitely hurting a lot and I hurt for her. She needed to know she wouldn’t always feel so sad.

Her dad was also very important in this book. While she was dealing with some craziness, she along with her older sister, Margot & younger sister, Kitty, were trying to set their dad up on dates. They didn’t want him to be alone. 
I do wish there had been more sister stuff, but I still loved Margot and Kitty to death. I loved how they were when some stuff happened and poor Lara Jean was freaking out. They supported her without question.

He also had some insights about love that he shared with his middle daughter.

“It’ll get easier, I promise. Peter Kavinsky isn’t the only boy in the world.” -Dad
“I just don’t want to hurt like this ever again.” -Lara Jean
“There’s no way to protect yourself against heartbreak Lara Jean. That’s just part of life.” -Dad

I actually really loved John, and I kept hoping that something would happen between Lara Jean and John. Not while she was with Peter of course, because cheating makes my skin crawl, but after they break up. Lara Jean was different with John, less aggravating, and I liked that a lot. They seemed to be a better fit.
Overall, I enjoyed this book. I didn’t like Lara Jean as much as I did in book one, and I heartily disliked Peter in this book. I am going to give it 4 stars because there was a lot of friendship stuff in there which I loved. I would recommend this book only if you are patient because Lara Jean really drove me crazy through a good chunk of this book.

It’s Pride Month!

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It should come as a surprise to no one that I am a HUGE supporter of the LGBT community, and am in fact, part of the LGBT community, as I identify as bisexual. I was struggling to come up with a post this week, but then it hit me. 

I wanted to do a post on Pride Month, but I tweaked it a bit, and decided to do a post where I recommend some books featuring LGBT characters in honor of it being Pride Month. I even asked my fellow book nerds for their recommendations because I wanted a pretty big list.

It encompasses MG, YA & NA.
Books that are already out
Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas features a gay character
Emmy & Oliver by Robin Bennway features a gay character
Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli features two gay characters 
Black Iris by Leah Raeder features a bisexual main character
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson has a gay main character
Not Otherwise Specified by Hannah Moskowitz has a bisexual main character
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz features two gay characters
More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera features a gay main character
Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley features two lesbian main characters
 The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun Hutchinson features two gay main characters
Alex as well by Alyssa Brugman features a male to female transgender character
Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky features a male to female transgender character
Far From You by Tess Sharpe features a bisexual main character
The Summer I Wasn’t Me by Jessica Verdi features a lesbian main character
Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour features two lesbian main characters
The Perks of Being A Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky features a gay character 
Just Between Us by J. H. Trumble features two gay main characters
Where You Are by J. H. Trumble features two gay characters
Don’t Let Me Go by J. H. Trumble features a gay character.
Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan features two gay main characters
Trust the Focus by Megan Erickson features two gay characters
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green & David Levithan features two gay characters
 
One May Guy by Michael Barakiva features two gay characters
The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth features two lesbian characters 
Focus on Me by Megan Erickson features two gay main characters
The Understatement of the Year by Sarina Bowen features two gay characters
Upcoming releases
Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler features two lesbian man characters
What We Left Behind by Robin Talley features a lesbian main character & a genderqueer main character
Trust Me, I’m Trouble by Mary Elizabeth Summer features a LGBT character
Cam Girl by Leah Raeder features a LGBT character
I know this is a lot of recs and I was honestly shocked to see so many people recommend books to me. I wasn’t expecting to have 30 books on this list.  This list is in no way, a complete list. They are just the ones I loved, or the ones my fellow book lovers recommended.

Thank you to Andi S.,Kim B., Jenny, Stormy, Danielle, Hannah, Shelly, Giselle, Stefani, Kayla, Amber, Estelle, Kat, Dahlia. I could not have created this list without your help!

Review: The Remedy (The Program #0.5) by Suzanne Young

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Book Title: The Remedy
Author: Suzanne Young
Published Date: April 21st, 2015
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Genre: YA/Dystopian
Series: Prequel from The Program duology
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
In a world before The Program…

Quinlan McKee is a closer. Since the age of seven, Quinn has held the responsibility of providing closure to grieving families with a special skill—she can “become” anyone.

Recommended by grief counselors, Quinn is hired by families to take on the short-term role of a deceased loved one between the ages of fifteen and twenty. She’s not an exact copy, of course, but she wears their clothes and changes her hair, studies them through pictures and videos, and soon, Quinn can act like them, smell like them, and be them for all intents and purposes. But to do her job successfully, she can’t get attached.

Now seventeen, Quinn is deft at recreating herself, sometimes confusing her own past with those of the people she’s portrayed. When she’s given her longest assignment, playing the role of Catalina Barnes, Quinn begins to bond with the deceased girl’s boyfriend. But that’s only the beginning of the complications, especially when Quinn finds out the truth about Catalina’s death. And the epidemic it could start.

Disclaimer: I received an e-ARC of this book from Simon Pulse via Edelweiss in exchange for my honest opinion.

Review:
Oh my goodness, how much do I love this series?

I read The Program and The Treatment awhile back and reviewed them here & here. When I heard Suzanne Young was writing prequels to this duology I was majorly excited. I had loved The Program and The Treatment and couldn’t wait to get back into the world.

Then I read the synopsis of this book ans was even more intrigued. The idea behind being a closer like Quinn was, was heartbreaking and soul crushing. Grieving families would hire her to be the person who died and she would help them get closure. I suspected there would be lots of feels in this book. In fact, I had kleenex beside me so I’d be prepared.

But for some reason I didn’t feel the feels. I didn’t cry or even get emotional at all. It took me awhile to even get into the book. I considered DNFing it because I just wasn’t feeling invested in it or the characters. But because it was Suzanne Young and I loved this series, I kept reading and kept hoping that I would fall in love with this book.

A little past the halfway mark, it began to pick up and as it began to pick up, I got more invested in Quinn, Declan, Aaron and the other characters. I’m still not exactly sure what caused the shift. Maybe it was my mood prior to Friday night, I’m not sure. All I know is that in a span of 135 pages, my final rating of this book went up significantly.

Like The Program and The Treatment, this book was very character heavy and I generally love character heavy books. I like knowing what makes them who they are, how they got to where they are and what makes them tick. We got a decent chunk of those questions answered, but I was left with more questions. Usually I’d consider that a negative, but in this case, I was okay with it.

Yes there was a twist at the end of the book and it was a twist that absolutely shocked me. For a minute or two I thought it had broken my brain (nope, not kidding about that) It was a twist I never saw coming so I was excited. I love being shocked by a twist. It makes me happy. I am giving it 4 stars because the ending was awesome and it made me really excited for the next book, The Epidemic.

Waiting on Wednesday #14

This weekly feature is hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine. It’s a way to showcase upcoming releases that we’re excited about.
My Pick
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads
What We Left Behind follows a teen couple—Gretchen, who identifies as a lesbian, and Toni, who identifies as genderqueer—as they struggle to stay together during their first year in college, despite the growing rift caused by distance and Toni’s shifting gender identity.

My Thoughts
You may remember how much I enjoyed Talley’s previous book, Lies We Tell Ourselves, so when I heard about her new book, I ran straight to Goodreads and looked it up. YAAAS, finally a story about a genderqueer character. That alone makes me excited. There are so few books out there that feature a genderqueer character. 

Not to mention, look at that gorgeous cover. I cannot wait to get my hands on this book!

So what are some books you’re excited for?

Blog Tour: Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler


Book Title: Under the Lights (Daylight Falls #2)
Author: Dahlia Adler
Publisher: Spencer Hill Contemporary
Release Date: June 30th 2015
Genre: GLBT, Young Adult/New Adult, Contemporary
Synopsis:
Josh Chester loves being a Hollywood bad boy, coasting on his good looks, his parties, his parents’ wealth, and the occasional modeling gig. But his laid-back lifestyle is about to change. To help out his best friend, Liam, he joins his hit teen TV show, Daylight Falls…opposite Vanessa Park, the one actor immune to his charms. (Not that he’s trying to charm her, of course.) Meanwhile, his drama-queen mother blackmails him into a new family reality TV show, with Josh in the starring role. Now that he’s in the spotlight—on everyone’s terms but his own—Josh has to decide whether a life as a superstar is the one he really wants.
Vanessa Park has always been certain about her path as an actor, despite her parents’ disapproval. But with all her relationships currently in upheaval, she’s painfully uncertain about everything else. When she meets her new career handler, Brianna, Van is relieved to have found someone she can rely on, now that her BFF, Ally, is at college across the country. But as feelings unexpectedly evolve beyond friendship, Van’s life reaches a whole new level of confusing. And she’ll have to choose between the one thing she’s always loved…and the person she never imagined she could.
Guest Post
I have a slight confession: I’m not a huge movie person. I know that’s odd coming from someone who writes Hollywood YA, and it’s even odder if you know how frequently I saw movies during high school and seminary. But as an adult, my attention span somehow just won’t stay in place for a movie like it will for a book, which means every year I see maybe one or two, and then I’m one of those jerks livetweeting the Oscars with occasional mentions of how I have no idea what’s going on.

But I digress! I was asked to write about my favorite movies, and dammit, I will deliver. So what if they all came out prior to 2010? These are the best of the best, and as such, they’re truly timeless.

Legally Blonde: I actually just rewatched this with my critique partner, This is Where it Ends author Marieke Nijkamp, and I still absolutely love it. It’s just the most phenomenally feminist movie, with scene after scene of women supporting each other, working on advancing themselves career-wise, screwing up and owning it…and then you have this romantic storyline where the good, supportive, non-judgmental guy wins. It’s basically my favorite things, all rolled in to one.

The Usual Suspects: If you’ve read the Daylight Falls books, you might notice something they have in common—Josh watches this movie in both of them. It’s his favorite, and for good reason: it’s also mine! I could say more about why I love it so much, both personally and for Josh, but I have a no-spoiler policy on this one. Yes, even 20 years later.

Bring it On: I have seen this movie so many times, but while I have a lot of favorite parts involving cheers, romance, and the dearly departed Natina Reed, there’s a single dialogue exchange from this movie that blew my mind hwne I first heard it, and that I still think is so important, and actually really relevant to Vanessa in Under the Lights. When Torrance and Missy are in the car, Missy says, “Look on the bright side—it’s only cheerleading!” to which Torrance responds, “I am only cheerleading!” And I thought that was fantastic. Some people live and breathe their passions in a way that’s incredible to me, even when other people dismiss them as insignificant. They stand tall and proud for what they love, what’s in their bones. They’re obsessed. And I think that is so cool. To me, that’s exactly Van trying to explain to her parents why her acting is so important and how much she believes in what she’s doing. They don’t get it, and she can’t make them, but she also can’t stop, won’t stop.

Empire Records: I don’t even know how many times my friends and I watched this in our teens, but it was a lot. If there’s a movie more gloriously quotable on the planet, I don’t know it. I think Ally and Van would’ve loved watching it together if it wasn’t before their time. Damn kids—get off my lawn.

LA Confidential: I may write about thoroughly modern Hollywood, but this James Ellroy-novel based film Noir looking back on more glamorous times (though a veil of darkness and corruption, of course) was my first great intro into life “behind the scenes.” Of course, the bribery, masquerading, and deceit are a little more hardcore and high-stakes in the movie that really introduced Guy Pearce to America and reunited me with my Usual Suspectslove, Kevin Spacey, but I think Josh, Liam, and Van would be more than happy to participating in a reenactment!
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Follow the Under The Lights by Dahlia Adler Blog Tour and don’t miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

I’m an Associate Editor of Mathematics by day, a Copy Editor by night, and I blog at The Daily Dahlia, YA Misfits, and the Barnes & Noble book blog. I also write contemporary YA (The Daylight Falls duology) and NA (The Radleigh University series). Rec-ing books is approximately my favorite thing in the universe, with macarons being a close second. Come say hi on Twitter, where I’m @MissDahlELama!

Review: Salt & Stone (Fire & Flood #2) by Victoria Scott

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Book Title: Salt & Stone
Author: Victoria Scott
Published Date: February 24th, 2015
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Genre: YA/SciFi
Series: Book Two of Fire & Flood series
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
What would you do to save someone you love? What about risking…everything?

In Fire & Flood, Tella Holloway faced a dangerous trek through the jungle and a terrifying march across the desert, all to remain a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed for a chance at obtaining the Cure for her brother. She can’t stop—and in Salt & Stone, Tella will have to face the unseen dangers of the ocean, the breathless cold of a mountain, and the twisted new rules in the race.

But what if the danger is deeper than that? How do you know who to trust when everyone’s keeping secrets? What do you do when the person you’ve relied on most suddenly isn’t there for support? How do you weigh one life against another?

The race is coming to an end, and Tella is running out of time, resources, and strength. At the beginning of the race there were 122 Contenders. As Tella and her remaining friends start the fourth and final part of the race, just forty-one are left…and only one can win.

Victoria Scott’s stunning thriller will leave readers’ hearts racing!

Disclaimer: I received an e-ARC of this book from Scholastic via Edelweiss in exchange for my honest review.

Review:
It’s been such a long time since I visited this world! I reviewed Fire & Flood here, back in January of 2014. I really should have reread Fire and Flood before I read Salt and Stone. I had forgotten some of the details from the first book.

It took me a really long time to get into this book. I’m not exactly sure why it took me so long to get into it. Maybe it was just my mood, maybe I was bored? I’m just not sure. It finally started picking up at about page 160. When I hit that part, I had a very hard time putting it back down.

I still loved Tella, and in fact her growth in this book was really awesome. She was able to stand on her own two feet even when Guy was not around.  Guy was every bit as swoony as he was in Fire and Flood. He could get a little aggravating, but I loved how things turned out for them in the end.

I also really liked Harper this time around. She was complicated and fascinating. I was glad to see more of her given how things were for her in the first book. Willow, Olivia, Braun and the rest of them were captivating. A new character by the name of Cotton was very interesting and I couldn’t figure out if he was a good person or a bad person. I spent the entire book trying to figure it out.

I’m still madly in love with Pandoras. I wish they were real. Madox and his loyalty to Tella was awesome. It was awesome to see all the different Pandoras. Lions, alligators, bears, iguanas just to mention a few. There was a few stressful moments involving Pandoras that actually got me in the feels.

Because I took so long getting into this book, I have to give it 4 stars. I did enjoy the story a lot once I finally got into it, it just took awhile for me to get into it. I am so excited that I got to read this book and I am going to miss these characters.

Stacking the Shelves #77

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This weekly feature is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews
Hi readers!

This week was pretty blah overall. I contemplated taking a brief hiatus from blogging. I still may do this, but not right now.

I downloaded one book from EW thanks to Bekka talking me into it. I was granted access to two titles through NetGalley.

I went to the library and grabbed some books. Sometimes I need to read physical books because ebooks just aren’t doing it for me.

I did a trade with Erin from The Hardcover Lover. Thank you Erin!

Received for Review
-Edelweiss
The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi

-NetGalley-

Until We Meet Again by Renee Collins
The Fall by James Preller


Library

P.S. I Still Love You (To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before #2) by Jenny Han
Bone Gap by Laura Ruby
 
Vanished (Vanished #1) by E. E. Cooper
Salt & Stone (Fire & Flood #2) by Victoria Scott

Sex & Violence by Carrie Mesrobian

Trade

Sweet (Sweet #1) by Emmy Laybourne

Bloggers Mentioned
Bekka
Erin

Hope you have an awesome week!