Review: Rock Chick Rescue

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Rock Chick Rescue

Rock Chick #2

Kristen Ashley

3stars


Jet McAlister has a secret. Eddie Chavez has the hots for Jet (not to mention Eddie’s just plain hot). Jet has too many problems to realize that Eddie’s interested. Eddie loses patience when Jet ends her waitressing shift at a strip club with a knife at her throat. Since Eddie’s a cop, he figures he can help. Since Jet’s used to solving everyone’s problems she doesn’t want Eddie’s help.

Throw in a Dolly Parton look-alike, a gruff but lovable strip club owner, Jet’s ne’er do well father, his ne’er do well friend, Bear, Bear’s long-suffering, chain-smoking wife Lavonne and the crew from Rock Chick and you’ve got Rock Chick Rescue.

Rock Chick Rescue takes you on a wild ride with Jet, Eddie and the gang as they wrestle bad guys in a bagel shop, hit Denver’s backstreet poker tables (with big hair), and help the strippers at Smithie’s take down a would-be murderer.

Through this, Jet’s got to learn that even when life made you give up your dreams, you can still end up with the (hot) guy. Eddie’s got to rescue Jet from a bad man (so he can do better things with her) and teach her that some dreams can come true.

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I admitted in my review of Rock Chick that alpha males aren’t my favorite type of hero. I get that some people really love them, but I am just not one of them. With that said, I did actually really enjoy Rock Chick and Lee wasn’t the worst hero I’ve come across. Maybe it was because it was the older brother/sister’s best friend trope (which I LOVE) or because Lee and Indy had grown up together, but his possessiveness didn’t really bother me that much.

But with Rock Chick Rescue, I wasn’t able to look past it as much. A lot of Eddie physically handling Jet, telling her that no matter what she did she was his now and sometimes it was just a little too much. For the most part I did like Eddie, but he also gave off a kind of creepy vibe.

I think another reason I was able to look past it in RC was because Indy was pretty awesome. She called Lee out on his bullshit. Yeah she gave in and slept with him (but it is Romance), but she continued to make it clear that he couldn’t control her.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Jet. First because she didn’t call Eddie out on his shit nearly as much as he needed to be and second, I’m just not a fan of the martyr character. Maybe it makes me feel like an asshole because I would definitely accept any and all help being offered if I had been held at knife point/shot at/and threatened with rape. There is nothing wrong with accepting help, especially in a situation like this. And ENOUGH with the “I’m boring” and “I’m not pretty” shit. Enough.

I definitely enjoyed the entire cast of characters being back (with some new additions) but I just didn’t think the plot was as much fun as Rock Chick.

Sailing Through Time: Review of The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

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The Girl From Everywhere

The Girl From Everywhere #1

Heidi Heilig

2/16/2016

Source: Netgalley

3stars

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

I was provided with this ARC by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.


Sixteen-year-old Nix Song is a time-traveller. She, her father and their crew of time refugees travel the world aboard The Temptation, a glorious pirate ship stuffed with treasures both typical and mythical. Old maps allow Nix and her father to navigate not just to distant lands, but distant times – although a map will only take you somewhere once. And Nix’s father is only interested in one time, and one place: Honolulu 1868. A time before Nix was born, and her mother was alive. Something that puts Nix’s existence rather dangerously in question…

Nix has grown used to her father’s obsession, but only because she’s convinced it can’t work. But then a map falls into her father’s lap that changes everything. And when Nix refuses to help, her father threatens to maroon Kashmir, her only friend (and perhaps, only love) in a time where Nix will never be able to find him. And if Nix has learned one thing, it’s that losing the person you love is a torment that no one can withstand. Nix must work out what she wants, who she is, and where she really belongs before time runs out on her forever.


 

Again I should point out that time travel books are my favorite so they are probably already always guaranteed at least 3 stars.  Or maybe I just haven’t read a really bad time travel book yet.

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The Good

The Storytelling

The Girl From Everywhere was a beautiful blend of history and mythology. On top of time traveling, which they call “navigating”, to the far off past, they can also go to mythical places, since it’s based on maps, and the belief that these places/things existed. That means if they found a map of Atlantis, there is a strong possibility they could actually go to Atlantis.  Kashmir, actually might even be from a mythical location that people once believed existed.   So to learn about Hawaiian mythology was really cool and I think Heilig did a wonderful job of weaving it into the story.

Plus, a lot of what happened was inspired by actual events! I definitely don’t really have a huge grasp on time travel science, but I like the theory that you can never really change the present/future.  Everything you do in the past has/will already happen in the present, simply by you going back to the past.  Does that make any sense?  Who knows if that’s a real theory, but it’s the one I like most.  So to find out that some of the events actually happened added to my favorite time travel theory.  Plus I just really love history.

The Familial Relationships

Nix’s dad is a huge jerk.  He’s obsessed with getting back to 1868 so that he can save Nix’s mother’s life, even if it includes endangering his daughter’s existence, only really cares about himself, and is an opium addict.  But I actually really enjoyed Nix and his relationships, her frustration over wanting to leave and feeling obligated to stay, and the growth their relationship undergoes.  It actually isn’t very often where a parent is a pretty prevalent secondary character in a YA novel.

The Lack of Romance

Ok, so there are not so subtle hints of romance, and even the briefest glimpses of a love triangle (although I don’t actually think it was one, but I’ll come back to that later), but this book was so much more.  The relationship between Nix and Kashmir was so perfect because that’s all it was: hints. They developed on their own and together. There is nothing better than when you can completely remove the romantic storyline and nothing changes.

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The Not So Good

Nothing in this book was bad per say, but there were some issues

Backstory/Worldbuilding

While Heilig did a wonderful job bringing Hawaii to life, not so much with explaining the science/magic behind the ability to navigate.  It involves maps, which you can only use once, doesn’t have to include ships and you have to believe it, but that’s basically all we know.  While I would prefer the information to be woven throughout the storytelling, I would much prefer an massive info dump to a lack of information.  It didn’t really ruin the book for me, and maybe it’s good that it’s a bit vague because it does seem magical.

The Actual Lack of “Navigating”

Ok, for a time travel book, they stay in one place for a good like 80% of the book.  We do get to see some of 18th century Calcutta and ancient (I think) China, most of the story takes place on one island of Hawaii. And to be honest, it made the plot a bit slow.  Usually with time travel books I’m always excited for the next location, which speeds up the pace a lot.  The Girl From Everywhere is over 400 pages long, and while it was still a quick read (for me anyway), there were some times when I was a bit bored.  While it was wonderful learning about and visualizing Hawaii in 1884, I wanted more action and adventure.

The Fact that This is A Series

Honestly, this book is a perfect standalone.  While I would love to learn more about the science/magic behind the navigating and actually see more traveling, I would prefer this not to be a series.  Maybe it will be a companion novel series, which I would enjoy more, because Nix’s story just seems to have ended perfectly.  It was open and free and anything can happen, and I kind of don’t want to see that. Especially since I suspect a series would definitely involve a love triangle and I’m not here for that.  So unless it is a companion novel, I don’t think I will be reading the next one.

 

Overall, I enjoyed this book enough to look past the lack of explanation/navigating.  I will probably even reread it (probably in preparation for the sequel which I say I won’t read but totally will).  If I wasn’t on a 6 month book buying ban I might even buy it.  Check back with me in 5 months.

 

*This is a scheduled post. I am currently on vacation*

Review: Up To This Pointe by Jennifer Longo

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Up to This Pointe

Jennifer Longo

Publication: 1/19/2016 

Source: Netgalley, e-ARC

3stars

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


She had a plan. It went south.

Harper is a dancer. She and her best friend, Kate, have one goal: becoming professional ballerinas. And Harper won’t let anything—or anyone—get in the way of The Plan, not even the boy she and Kate are both drawn to.
 
Harper is a Scott. She’s related to Robert Falcon Scott, the explorer who died racing to the South Pole. So when Harper’s life takes an unexpected turn, she finagles (read: lies) her way to the icy dark of McMurdo Station . . . in Antarctica. Extreme, but somehow fitting—apparently she has always been in the dark, dancing on ice this whole time. And no one warned her. Not her family, not her best friend, not even the boy who has somehow found a way into her heart.


This might contain spoilers, but I thought the reason for why Harper wound up in Antarctica was obvious from the synopsis alone, so I’m going to talk about that within my review. 

I’m not the biggest fan of contemporary YA.  I used to be way more into when I was a teenager myself, but now I often find that I feel way too removed from the trials of being a teenager that it doesn’t end up working.  So I was very pleasantly surprised by this novel.

I am secretly obsessed with ballet, even though I only took lessons for 2 years when I was 5.  There aren’t too many books that are about ballet, but I am always looking for more.  Up to This Pointe, isn’t exactly really about ballet, but more about the dancer and what happens when the plan you worked for your entire life is dashed right before your eyes.

Harper and her best friend Kate have had a plan in place since they were young.  They are both going to dance with the San Francisco Ballet after graduating high school.  Except, as Harper soon learns, although she has more love for ballet than possibly anything else in her life, she does not have the skill to make it as a professional dancer.  She feels an obvious sense of loss and confusion and ends up running away to Antarctica to figure out what to do next.

Before I go into anything else, I want to talk about the fact that NO ONE, especially her ballet teacher, tells Harper that she does not have the talent to make it as a ballet dancer until it almost too late.  Her teacher waits until a few weeks before the audition to break it to her that there is no way she would ever be picked up by a company.  Now, that might seem harsh, and it is, but that’s ballet.  And this should have been relayed to Harper years before the story takes place.  She probably would have still auditioned, because that’s just who she is (and she still does) but at least she would have had years, not weeks to come to terms with the fact that she will probably not be selected.  It just made me angry, and doesn’t seem realistic that a ballet teacher wouldn’t have informed her of this.

I liked Harper.  I loved her love for ballet, her students and her city.  This book was a beautiful homage to San Francisco.  I understand her need to go away to find herself after such a devastating loss. But I think the best part of this book was the friendships.  SO MANY FEMALE FRIENDSHIPS.  Kate, Vivian and Charlotte are the main women that Harper interacts with and each relationship was different, and I think wonderfully portrayed.  The friendship with Vivian might have been a bit rushed, but I still really enjoyed it. And there was a moment where I really hated Kate, but for the most part I understand her as well (I, personally, wouldn’t have forgiven her for saying what she did, but that is just me and I’m petty and I can hold a fantastic grudge).  The relationships weren’t always perfect, but they were realistic and that means a lot more.

Another plus was the family relationships portrayed in this book.  A huge hell yeah for present and pretty awesome parents and a positive sibling relationship.

The romance, although not really entirely a love triangle, wasn’t my favorite part, but I’m really happy with how it ended.  It might seem like it, but I don’t think the romance was even really a huge focus of the story.  A lot of it was just Harper trying to figure shit out and what to do now that she can’t be a dancer.  The answer was right in front of her all along and I’m happy with the ending.

There are just some things that weren’t fully addressed and I have some issues with.  As a dancer (and one who wants to be a professional), Harper obviously has to retain the right body weight (I say obviously because ballet is brutal).  She is constantly dieting, and there were some points where it seemed extremely close to anorexia.  If it’s not anorexia, she has some serious issues with food and eating and they were hardly addressed.  Also, what’s with her nails always being blue (not painted blue, just blue).  Does she just have bad circulation?  Is it because of her weight? WHY ARE THEY ALWAYS BLUE?  You tell me this but don’t explain it.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading it.  A win for contemporary YA, which I haven’t had the best of luck with recently!

 

A Somewhat Disappointing Finale: Unmade by Sarah Rees Brennan

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Unmade

The Lynburn Legacy #3

Sarah Rees Brennan

2014

3stars

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


 

Kami has lost the boy she loves, is tied to a boy she does not, and faces an enemy more powerful than ever before. With Jared missing for months and presumed dead, Kami must rely on her new magical link with Ash for the strength to face the evil spreading through her town.

Rob Lynburn is now the master of Sorry-in-the-Vale, and he demands a death. Kami will use every tool at her disposal to stop him. Together with Rusty, Angela, and Holly, she uncovers a secret that might be the key to saving the town. But with knowledge comes responsibility – and a painful choice. A choice that will risk not only Kami’s life, but also the lives of those she loves most.

Set against a centuries-old legacy of blood, power, and vengeance, the truth does not seem like much of a weapon. But it is all Kami has.


This isn’t going to be a very long review. Mainly because it took me so long to read that I don’t really remember that much of what happened in the beginning. And that probably isn’t a good sign.

I am sad to say that this series went downhill from where it started. Not so much that I didn’t like the books, I just didn’t love them the way I did the first. Kami was still amazing (as the majoirty of the characters still were. I especially enjoyed the banter between Lillian Lynburn and Jon Glass), and I really did enjoy the ending, but the middle really forced my opinion. I was much more aware of the failures of Brennan’s writing, and the pace was a bit too slow and the relationship drama was over the top. JUST BE HONEST WHEN YOU TALK TO EACH OTHER. STOP BEING SO GOD DAMN MOPEY.

At the same time, a lot of what happened was a too convenient for me.  There were multiple times where the characters were pretty much about to die and then miraculously they were saved! Once would have been fine, but it happened 3 or 4 times.

Plus, I’m kind of really angry over a certain aspect of the plot. I get it, but I don’t have to be happy about it.

In the end I’m going to give it 3 stars, even thought it took me over a week to read and I didn’t particularly enjoy the majority of this book. I just can’t bring myself to give a series that started off so well anything less than 3 stars. I just wished it had remained at the same level of awesomeness that was Unspoken.

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Retelling a Classic: ARC review of Teen Frankenstein

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Teen Frankenstein

High School Horror # 1

Chandler Baker

Publication: 1/12/16

Source: Netgalley e-ARC

3stars

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

I was provided with this ARC by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.


It was a dark and stormy night when Tor Frankenstein accidentally hit someone with her car. And killed him. But all is not lost–Tor, being the scientific genius she is, brings him back to life…

Thus begins a twisty, turn-y take on a familiar tale, set in the town of Hollow Pines, Texas, where high school is truly horrifying.

 


 

I’ve never read Frankenstein. Actually, it is on my list of books to read for the Classics challenge I am participating in in 2016. But since it is one of the most famous novels ever written, of course I know the gist of the story.  Dr. Victor Frankenstein creates a “monster”, who everyone always labels as Frankenstein. I’m not sure if in the book he brings together a bunch of different body parts from different dead people or just brings back a dead body back to life, but Teen Frankenstein has a bit of both.

Victor is now Victoria, or Tor Frankenstein.  She is extremely smart, something that separates her from the majority of her podunk Texas (? I think) town.  She and her friend Owen have been experimenting on animals, trying to use electricity to bring them back to life, but nothing seems to be working.  Then one rainy night, Victoria hits a boy with her car and he dies.  Instead of doing the normal thing, and you know, calling for help and explaining what happened, she has the brilliant idea that maybe the reason the experiments were failing is because the subjects were too small! She decides that the newly dead boy is the perfect new specimen. And it works.

But he has no memory of his previous life, no ability to feel pain, and what seems to be the mental capacity of a toddler…So they decide to name him Adam and enroll him in high school the very next day.  I’m not even going to go into how crazy I think this whole beginning is. I mean, beyond the fact that she killed someone, covered the crime up and stole a corpse, she then decides it will be a good idea to enroll it in high school??? I get that she needs to see if her experiment can succeed in assimilating into society, but the very next day???  But fine. I’ll look past that. Suspension of belief and all that.

Adam, who again, has the ability to talk, and walk and even play football, is extremely child like, but of course, everyone loves him. He joins the football team, gets a girlfriend and makes friends, all to the delight of Tor, his creator.  And then boys start being murdered all over the town and people are pointing fingers at the new kid and Tor doesn’t know what to think.

I am having such a hard time writing an actual review of this book.  The plot was pretty basic and the murder mystery was pretty bland. It wasn’t a bad book; I did enjoy reading it and I did end up giving it 3 stars.  I’m just having a hard time putting my thoughts into words.  So instead of even trying to write an actual review, I’ll focus on Tor.

Before I get to Tor, however, I have to mention her best friend, Owen.  Owen was the saving grace of this book. He was hilarious and without him there would have been no one around to humanize Tor.  The only reason I even considered liking her was because of her relationship with Owen.

The entire time I was reading this book I kept going back and forth about whether I liked Tor or not. What I liked most about her was her sense of humor.  I love a good, sarcastic dry humor.  But there was always something that kept me from liking her.  You might think it was how judgemental she was and how she thought she was better than everybody, but honestly that didn’t even bother me that much.  I think it was the way that she continuously referred to Adam as hers or as the “experiment”, or how she kept forgetting that she had KILLED someone and that’s why she had this new “experiment” and that he was once an actual human being.  That he might still in fact be an actual, human being, only a bit living challenged.  And that ending.  It wasn’t a cliffhanger exactly, and it was pretty great.  It definitely cemented every feeling I had about Tor.  I can’t tell you though.  Spoilers.

All in all, it was an interesting book and I think it was a pretty good introduction into Frankenstein.  I do plan on continuing with the series, although it’s not a real series, but more of a bunch of companion novels.  I’m guessing they will be other modern day retellings of classic horror stories.

 

Sanctuary Bay by Melinda Metz and Laura J Burns

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Sanctuary Bay

Laura J, Burns & Melinda Metz

Publication: 1/19/16

Source: Netgalley e-ARC

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Goodreads | Amazon |The Book Depository

*I was provided with this ARC by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.*


 

 

This was my WOW post a few weeks ago. I love boarding school stories and I was really hoping for a creepy, atmospheric read.   While it wasn’t exactly creepy, I think the authors did a great job at bringing the setting to life.

Sanctuary Bay Academy is the most elite prep school in the country. Located on an island off the coast of Maine, once you arrive, there is no leaving. Total immersion is how the school describes the situation. There is no contact with the outside world until you graduate. But when you graduate you are almost guaranteed a spot, and probably a scholarship, to your pick of Ivy League colleges. And for Sarah Merson, a foster kid who has been tossed around the system, the school is a godsend. It is her best shot at securing a better life for herself. So she goes all in and decides there is nothing she wouldn’t do to better the chance of achieving that future. But she soon discovers that not everything is as it seems. There are secrets within the walls of Sanctuary Bay and it is up to Sarah to find out the truth.

For the most part, I liked Sarah. She’s bi-racial, half black and half white. In fact, a lot of the characters in the novel are POC, which is a nice change. They didn’t seem to be tokenized either. Sarah’s had a rough upbringing. Thanks to her eidetic memory she is able to remember in full detail her parent’s brutal murder and sometimes suffers from flashbacks where she is totally immersed in memories from the past. There are brief mentions of sexual abuse at the hands of foster families, although it’s brushed over pretty quickly. I said for the most part I liked her, because her poor-me attitude did get a bit tiresome. She of course has every right to be angry with her lot in life, but she has a hard time recognizing that other students, even the rich, more privileged ones could have hard upbringings too.

There was a little bit of romance, and even a possible love-square situation, but it’s not really focused on that much. In fact, around 30% through the book things get weird and any real romance is set aside.

It’s hard for me to talk about the other characters without giving away plot details, but I will say that I did like Ethan, her roommate’s boyfriend. Yeah he comes off as an ass, but sometimes those are my favorite types. Plus, he’s not really as jerky as he seems.

It’s a “psychological thriller” but it’s also a lot more than that. There were many different turns in this story. It started off as one thing and ended up somewhere completely different. Towards the end I kind of guessed where it was headed, but if you had told me within the first 20% of the book I probably would have been shocked.

The writing style kept me engaged throughout all of it. I gave it 3 stars, so I did enjoy reading it, but there was a lot that felt off. There were a lot of questions I had that were kind of answered, but also not really at the same time. And the ending is definitely set up for a sequel. In fact, if there isn’t a sequel, and I haven’t seen anything to suggest that there will be, I would totally move this down to a 2 star rating. If there ends up being a sequel I would probably feel better about that nagging feeling.

 

 

This Raging Light by Estelle Laure

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This Raging Light

Estelle Laure

Publication: 12/22/15

Source: Netgalley e-ARC

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Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

I was provided with this ARC by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.


Can the best thing happen at the worst time?

Her dad went crazy. Her mom left town. She has bills to pay and a little sister to look after. Now is not the time for level-headed seventeen-year-old Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she’s about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend’s brother.


Despite what the synopsis looks like, I don’t think the romance is the focus of this book). I am very conflicted about this book.  On one hand I really liked it and on the other I did not.

The writing kind of annoyed me.  It was choppy and a bit too, (but at the same time, not enough) purple-y. Some of it was really beautiful and at other points it was just weird.  It was strong and weak at the same time and I think that is contributes to my confusion over how to rate this.

Also, the book was only 288 pages long and a LOT happens.  Ok, well not really. But there are a lot of different plot points, which kind of takes away from the fact that this book would have been very interesting if it was just about her trying to survive on her own and care for her sister.  That would have been enough.  But you also have a romance and friendship issues.  And on top of that, within the last like, 15% of the book there is an accident which takes away from the plot and is completely and totally unnecessary.

So from here on out, it’s not really going to be much of a review as it is a rant.  Sorry.

This book made me very angry. I need to point out that I was angry for Lucille, not at her.  I don’t think she was angry enough.  When I read a book that is 1st person, single POV I always end up viewing myself as the character.  Well, if the writing is good.  That means that I usually always defend the character and get angry on her behalf when things go wrong.  So I was on Lucille’s side.  Through everything.  That means it’s hard for me to blame her in both the relationship and friendship aspect.  That doesn’t mean that I particularly liked Lucille.  I didn’t not like her, I just didn’t love her. But I understand her.

She’s got the short end of the stick and she is doing the best she can. She needs support.  I’m not saying she should wallow in self-pity forever, but I think for the length of the book it is perfectly acceptable.  It’s only, like, 2 and a ½ months and I think it is fine that she is woe-is-me.  Her life sucks at the moment.  And for the most part, she isn’t that selfish. The complaining isn’t overbearing.  She worries for her sister and making enough money.  I got really annoyed when Digby was making fun of her (in a teasing way) about how much she is complaining. She isn’t just making the drama up like I did when I was 17 and complaining about how much my life sucked.  SHE IS LITERALLY 17, ALONE, AND TAKING CARE OF A 9 YEAR OLD. I know this happens more than it should, but come on.  If I was 17 and my parents abandoned me with my 9 year old sister I probably wouldn’t have done what she did.  And I respect her for it.

Ok, if that wasn’t enough for you, I’m going to rant a little harder for a minute here, so just excuse me.

I’m disappointed because I thought this book was going to include a beautiful friendship.  And it did at the beginning. Until Eden becomes literally the worst friend in the entire world.  I’m sorry, I get that your feelings are hurt because your best friend yelled at you, but WTF.  Your best friend’s father was arrested, put on suicide watch and then disappeared.  Your best friend’s mother went on vacation and never came back.  Your best friend is trying to balance caring for her 9 year old sister, have a job so she can earn money to survive, and not let anyone find out that her parents have abandoned them.  HOW ABOUT YOU GET OVER YOURSELF EDEN.

To be fair, I’m not the least bit upset at Eden for not being able to help watch Wren. I get that.  What I’m upset about is the fact that she literally just stops talking to Lucille because one time Lucille flipped her shit, when she is obviously going through a lot, and should be allowed to flip her shit every now and then.  Way to be a shitty friend Eden.  I don’t feel bad for you at all.

Ok. Rant is over.

This is getting a little long so I’ll just touch on 2 last points: the relationship and the ending.

I don’t really mind cheating ( in books).  Sometimes it annoys me and sometimes it doesn’t.  I mean, I’m always vaguely uncomfortable because it’s a touchy issue, but for the most part, if a book has cheating in it, or if characters cheat, it doesn’t automatically make me hate it or them.  So Lucille is in love with Digby, her best friend’s twin brother. And Digby has a long term girlfriend.  And he ends up cheating on his girlfriend with Lucille.  And that’s not right.  Lucille definitely deserves some of the blame because she knew he had a girlfriend and I’m not even going to excuse, or explain, her behavior because of what she has going on.  And I’m not going to excuse or explain Digby’s actions because what he did was wrong as well.  What really makes me angry (totally lied, still ranting) is that, of course, when people find out, it’s basically all Lucille’s fault.  Digby’s the one who actually cheated, but that’s ok because he’s just so good. It’s Lucille’s fault for taking advantage of that goodness and how caring he is, and fuck that.  Just another book, (or instance, because it happens all the time) where the girl gets blamed because why not?

Ok, for the ending.  I thought it was great.  It is left somewhat open and everything isn’t perfectly resolved, but I’m fine with that.  This book would have lost a star if there had been a concrete happy ending.

Anyway, I decided to give it 3 stars because I did like it and it did evoke a lot of emotion from me, but there was just something stopping it from getting a higher rating.    This was Laure’s debut and I will definitely be checking out her sophomore novel.

Dashing Through the Snow by Debbie Macomber

It’s my birthday!  As of 11:30 am I am officially 26 years old.  I’m not terribly upset about getting older, it just kind of sucks that my 20s are more than half over. I was lucky enough to be able to celebrate with my family in New York over Thanksgiving, but today is just a normal day.  Just got back from the gym and now I have to get ready to go to work in a few hours. I did eat like 3 cupcakes though.

In celebration of my birthday, here is a review!

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Dashing Through the Snow

Debbie Macomber

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Ashley Davison, a graduate student in California, desperately wants to spend the holidays with her family in Seattle. Dashiell Sutherland, a former army intelligence officer, has a job interview in Seattle and must arrive by December 23. Though frantic to book a last-minute flight out of San Francisco, both are out of luck: Every flight is full, and there’s only one rental car available. Ashley and Dash reluctantly decide to share the car, but neither anticipates the wild ride ahead.

At first they drive in silence, but forced into close quarters Ashley and Dash can’t help but open up. Not only do they find they have a lot in common, but there’s even a spark of romance in the air. Their feelings catch them off guard—never before has either been so excited about a first meeting. But the two are in for more twists and turns along the way as they rescue a lost puppy, run into petty thieves, and even get caught up in a case of mistaken identity. Though Ashley and Dash may never reach Seattle in time for Christmas, the season is still full of surprises—and their greatest wishes may yet come true.


 

After having some bad luck in the Christmas books I found for the season (besides the wonderful Sleigh Bells in the Snow) I am happy to announcethat I have found another adorable Christmas read.

The banter between Ashley and Dash was delightful and it’s totally true that a puppy makes everything better. While there was of course instalove (it does take place over a 3 day road trip) I didn’t even mind it. I think that’s the thing about romances; I just expect there to be instalove so it doesn’t annoy me as much. And the fact that Ashley kept throwing around NCIS and Gibbs references totally helped. I do love me some Gibbs.

I probably would have rated this 4 stars if it hadn’t been for a few minor annoyances.

  1. The FBI plot was strange. It was annoying to have the POV shift to the agents, both of whom were pretty much cardboard caricatures. They didn’t come off as the most effective agents either. And then the whole plot point seemed rushed when it was finally resolved.
  2. The completely random POV shift to the two teenagers who steal their license plate. I get that there kind of had to be one to explain what happened, it just felt a little weak.
  3. And taken with the two points above, the fact that this was not an official dual-POV novel. I really wish I could have gotten some of the story from Dash’s perspective. I want to know more about his heartbreak and his time in the military!

I still totally enjoyed it. And I just found out it’s going to be made into a Hallmark Christmas movie (which kind of makes me think that Macomber wrote the book in order for a movie to be made). Meghan Ory, who I know as Red from Once Upon a Time is going to be Ashley. She’s not really how I pictured her, but oh well. The guy who will be playing Dash is super hot. I might actually even watch it.

photos taken from IMDB