Review: The Melody of Light by M.L. Rice

Book Title: The Melody of Light
Author: M.L. Rice
Published Date: November 18th, 2014
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Genre: YA Contemporary
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Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Siblings Riley and Aidan Gordon are survivors. Together, they survived an abusive childhood, and when a fiery accident incinerates all they have—except for each other—they survive that, too. The tragedy leaves them with burdens and pain beyond their years, but it also sets them free to forge their own paths. Aidan’s road to happiness seems smooth and carefree. But Riley continues to struggle, her only saving grace being a passion for music that helps soothe her damaged soul. As their paths diverge and college looms, Riley will have to depend less on Aidan and more on herself. Fear of failure drives her, but will finding love derail her single-minded determination to succeed, or will it open the door to the family she’s always wanted?

Disclaimer: I received this e-ARC from Bold Strokes Books via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Review:
This book sounded like something I’d love, so I was excited to get it from NetGalley. It’s no secret that I love dark contemporaries and that they usually give me all those feels. Unfortunately, this book didn’t do it for me. I was unbelievably bored the entire time I read it. I didn’t root for Riley or Aidan to overcome their childhood. I didn’t get excited or emotional at all.

Even as young adults they seemed overly involved in each others lives which really gave me the hebie jeebies. There was no reason they needed to constantly be all up in each others business and it really didn’t sit well with me. I understand being close with siblings, especially considering their rough childhood, but their co-dependence really made me wonder if they could ever have their own lives.

I was not a big fan of the romance either which is weird because I love LGBT romance. In this book it kinda came out of nowhere I was was left wondering if I had missed clues to the fact that one of the siblings was attracted to their same gender. Even when the couple got together, I wondered why they were ever together because I didn’t feel the chemistry between them at all.

Things were really rushed in this book and I don’t feel like enough time was spent developing their characters. I wanted more character development for Riley and more for Aidan. I wanted to see how they would conquer the world if they weren’t constantly attached to each other. I wanted them to explore their independence 

This book was overall very boring, the sibling relationship gave me the creeps and the character development was very poor. So I’ll be giving this book 2 stars. I would not recommend this book to anyone.

Review: Secret Lies by Amy Dunne

Book Title: Secret Lies
Author: Amy Dunne
Release Date: December 16th, 2013
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Genre: YA/Contemporary/LGBT
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Book Link: Goodreads
Purchase Links: AmazonBarnes & Noble
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Would you face your biggest fear, to save the one you love? 

Nicola Jackson escapes from her abuser, only to realize she has no one to turn to and nowhere to go. In a twist of fate, she accidentally bumps into Jenny O’Connor, the most popular girl at school. They strike up an unlikely friendship. As their trust in each other develops, they share their darkest secrets, and their relationship blossoms into a secret romance. 

Jenny loves Nicola, but she is fearful that if their secret relationship is discovered, she might lose her family, friends, and her seemingly perfect life. 

Nicola confronts her abuser and blackmails him to leave for good, but things go terrifyingly wrong. Jenny is left with a life-changing dilemma: should she face her fear and accept who she is, or let Nicola take the blame and pretend their relationship never happened?

Disclaimer: I received this e-ARC from Bold Strokes Books via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

Review:
This author was a new author to me so I had no idea what to expect when I began this book. I found myself really liking the story. Yes, the timeline was a bit unbelievable but when you are in an abusive situation you’ll use any means to get out of the situation. Even if that means befriending a girl that you had hardly ever spoken to before. 

I totally understand why so many people disliked the book because of the unrealistic timeline, but for me it didn’t both me much. Maybe because the characters were so great all down the road.Out of both Nicola and Jenny, I liked Nicola more. She was resilient and determined not to play the victim which was amazing given all that she had been through in the past 5 years.

I liked Jenny too. It was hard to hear about how she dealt with things but I’m glad that it wasn’t treated as a taboo subject like so many things still are. However, it was her family that made me like her even more. Despite being very devout Catholics,they were warm and loving which was really nice to see. Even Elizabeth, who was a class A bitch initially, grew on me.

The relationship itself was a bit insta-lovey which makes me cringe but they were able to be themselves around each other which was good to see. Outside of Laura, Jenny really didn’t have any decent friends.I didn’t like how once they were together and alone together, they always went to sex. But then I had to remember that they were teenagers and many teenagers are sex-crazed.

The ending just about broke me and it only made me love Jenny’s parents more and actually made me have sympathy for Nicola’s mother, which I never expected to happen.I cried a lot of tears during the end.So the feels were definitely there. 

Overall, I really liked this one. The timeline was unrealistic and sometimes Jenny & Nicola both got on my nerves for being so sex crazed so those are the reasons I’m giving it 4 stars.I think I’ll probably read any book the author writes in the future.