Blog tour: Love Scene, Take Two by Alex Evansley

Love Scene, Take Two by Alex Evansley
Rating: ★★★★★
Links: AmazonTBDGoodreads • B&N • iBooks • Kobo
Publication Date: June 12, 2018
Source: ARC from Xpresso Book Tours

Teddy Sharpe is kind of famous. He might actually be on his way to being really famous, especially if he’d nailed an audition for the lead role in the movie adaption of the newest bestselling young adult book series. There’s just one problem: He totally blew the audition. And he’s stuck in a tiny North Carolina airport. And his maybe-ex-girlfriend kind of just broke up with him.

The weekend isn’t exactly looking good until Bennett Caldwell, author of the very book series he just auditioned for, takes pity on him and invites him to her family’s lake house. Away from the glitz and glam of Hollywood for a few days, Teddy starts to relax . . . and somehow he and Bennett just click. But dating is hard enough when you aren’t the subject of several dozen fanblogs, and the Internet is full of juicy gossip about Teddy and Bennett . . . gossip that Bennett might not be prepared to handle.

Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, Alex Evansley’s debut novel, written from both Bennett and Teddy’s perspectives, will have teens laughing, swooning, and falling in love along with these fantastically relatable characters.

Let’s get one thing straight: This book is adorable. I fell in love with the book, the writing style, and Teddy Sharpe himself on page one. Just look at this opening line:

There are few things in life of which Teddy Sharpe is absolutely certain, and he’s absolutely certain this audition is going to be a train wreck.

I mean,

✔️ A teenage bestselling author
✔️ An up and coming actor who isn’t a total jerk
✔️ (He’s actually a really good guy)
✔️ The cutest pairing ever with totally swoony scenes
✔️ Just enough drama to keep things interesting

Was this book written for me?

I love that this book is YA written about the post-high school crowd. I love that Teddy lets teenage girls fawn all over him and take his picture and talk his ear off and he never once complains about it. I love that Teddy stands up for Bennett’s younger cousin over and over again. I love that Bennett calls herself out on judging Olivia, the main actress in the film adaptation of her book, before she even knows her. I love so many things about this book.

I had such a good time reading this book that I actually took my time. I didn’t want it to end, so I drew it out over almost a week. I could’ve binged it in a night — it’s well-written and so adorable — but I wanted the experience to last, so I only read a couple chapters each night.

Highly, highly recommended.

About the author:

Alex Evansley is a twenty-something-year-old writer from North Carolina. Her specialized talents include putting on workout clothes and not working out, sleeping during the day, losing socks, and procrastinating stories she’d like to write. Love Scene, Take Two is her debut novel.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

Follow the tour here!

 

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Blog tour (+ giveaway!): The Brightsiders by Jen Wilde

The Brightsiders by Jen Wilde
Series: standalone
Rating: ★★★★☆
Links: AmazonTBDGoodreads • B&N iBooks • Kobo
Publication Date: May 22, 2018
Source: ARC from Xpresso Book Tours

A teen rockstar has to navigate family, love, coming out, and life in the spotlight after being labeled the latest celebrity trainwreck in Jen Wilde’s quirky and utterly relatable novel. 

As a rock star drummer in the hit band The Brightsiders, Emmy King’s life should be perfect. But there’s nothing the paparazzi love more than watching a celebrity crash and burn. When a night of partying lands Emmy in hospital and her girlfriend in jail, she’s branded the latest tabloid train wreck.

Luckily, Emmy has her friends and bandmates, including the super-swoonworthy Alfie, to help her pick up the pieces of her life. She knows hooking up with a band member is exactly the kind of trouble she should be avoiding, and yet Emmy and Alfie Just. Keep. Kissing.

Will the inevitable fallout turn her into a clickbait scandal (again)? Or will she find the strength to stand on her own?

The Brightsiders was actually one of my most anticipated books of 2018. I mean, a book about a teenage rock star and her awesome friends with some scandalous friends-to-lovers romance happening on the side? Sign me up! That said, I was a little nervous to read it because I was expecting such great things, but…

Guess what? I loved it. This book was so much fun!

I knew I was in for a wild ride when Emmy was spiraling out of control at 10% in — but I felt that Wilde handled all of the conflicts really well. I loved all of the main characters and would love to be friends with them if I were ten years younger. (Maybe at this point in my life I can be a surrogate big sister.) All of the characters are complex and fully fleshed out and although there’s a wide variety of representation (bisexual, pansexual, genderqueer, nonbinary, different races and ethnicities, mental health issues) nobody feels like they’ve been added to the story just to check a box.

This is exactly what I’m looking for when I read YA and I can wholeheartedly recommend it to anybody looking for a fun contemporary. If you’ve read Wilde’s Queens of Geek, keep an eye out for some cameos by characters you already know and love.

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

Author Bio:

Jen Wilde is a writer, geek and fangirl with a penchant for coffee, books and pugs. She writes YA stories about zombies (AS THEY RISE), witches (ECHO OF THE WITCH) and fangirls (QUEENS OF GEEK). Her debut series reached over three million reads online and became an Amazon bestseller. Her next book, THE BRIGHTSIDERS, comes out May 2018, and GOING OFF-SCRIPT releases Summer 2019.

When she’s not writing, Jen loves binge-watching her favorite shows on Netflix, eating pizza, traveling to far away places and going to conventions in Marty McFly cosplay.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook Page / Facebook Group / Twitter

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

Follow the blog tour here!

Blog tour (with giveaway!): Airports, Exes, and Other Things I’m Over by Shani Petroff

Airports, Exes, and Other Things I’m Over by Shani Petroff
Series: Standalone
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Links: AmazonTBDGoodreads • B&N • iBooks • Kobo
Publication Date: May 15, 2018
Source: ARC from Xpresso Book Tours

A bad storm, two canceled flights, stuck in an airport with a hot stranger and the guy who broke her heart… what could go wrong?

After Sari caught her boyfriend Zev cheating on her, their romantic Florida vacation was ruined. She can’t get back to NYC soon enough. Unfortunately, mother nature may have different plans. A huge storm is brewing in the Northeast, and flights all over the country are getting canceled—including Sari’s. She winds up stuck at the airport for hours. With Zev!

When another stranded passenger (a hot NYU guy) suggests a connecting flight to Boston, Sari jumps at the chance. But when her mom freaks out about her traveling alone, she has no choice—she has to include Zev, and somehow survive being trapped with the guy who broke her heart!

First of all, can I just say that I love the title of this book? The title is what first drew me in and what first made this book show up on my most anticipated of 2018 list. Also, how awkward, imagine being stranded with your cheating boyfriend because of a non-refundable vacation and some terrible weather? Yikes! Anyway, without further ado, let’s get into the review.

Airports, Exes, and Other Things I’m Over reminds me a lot of classic YA — the kind of stuff I read when I was an actual Young Adult. It’s not a groundbreakingly deep book or anything, but it’s fun and dramatic and a quick read. The drama makes it easy to keep reading even when I, a certified Real Adult, wanted to take Sari and Zev by the shoulders and tell them to stop overthinking and overreacting and just listen to each other.

I really liked all of the side characters, especially Sari’s grandmother and Dylan and Fitz, the two boys who help Sari in her quest to get back home. I actually wish we could’ve seen more of Dylan and Fitz! They seemed to be two genuinely good guys. I was never quite sure what to make of Sari, who was strong and driven but too much in her head, and Zev, who was nerdy and charming but hard to trust.

In the end, I’d recommend this for younger YA readers. I think it will feel very relatable to teens but might be frustrating to older readers.

Author Bio:

Shani Petroff is a writer living in New York City. She’s the author of the “Bedeviled” series, which includes Daddy’s Little Angel, The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Dress, Careful What You Wish For, and Love Struck, and is the co-author of the “Destined” series which includes Ash and Ultraviolet. She also writes for television news programs and several other venues. When she’s not locked in her apartment typing away, she spends a whole lot of time on books, boys, TV, daydreaming, and shopping online.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

DON’T FORGET TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY!

ARC review: Carry Me Home by Jessica Therrien

Carry Me Home by Jessica Therrien
Published by: Acorn Publishing
Publication date: September 26, 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Thriller, Young Adult
Blog Tour via Xpresso Book Tours

“A riveting page-turner… Jessica Therrien broke my heart into a million pieces — and then put it back together again. This book will haunt and uplift readers long after they turn the last page.”
-KAT ROSS, best-selling author of The Midnight Sea

CARRY ME HOME is a fictional novel inspired by the true story of a teenage girl’s involvement in several Mexican gangs in San Jose and Los Angeles. The members of her crew call her Guera, Spanish for “white girl” and it doesn’t take long for her to get lost in their world of guns and drugs.

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Lucy and Ruth are country girls from a broken home. When they move to the city with their mother, leaving behind their family ranch and dead-beat father, Lucy unravels.

They run to their grandparents’ place, a trailer park mobile home in the barrio of San Jose. Lucy’s barrio friends have changed since her last visit. They’ve joined a gang called VC. They teach her to fight, to shank, to beat a person unconscious and play with guns. When things get too heavy, and lives are at stake, the three girls head for LA seeking a better life.

But trouble always follows Lucy. She befriends the wrong people, members of another gang, and every bad choice she makes drags the family into her dangerous world.

Told from three points of view, the story follows Lucy down the rabbit hole, along with her mother and sister as they sacrifice dreams and happiness, friendships and futures. Love is waiting for all of them in LA, but pursuing a life without Lucy could mean losing her forever.

Ultimately it’s their bond with each other that holds them together, in a true test of love, loss, and survival.

🔸Goodreads 🔸 Amazon 🔸 Barnes & Noble 🔸

Author Bio: Jessica Therrien is the author of the young adult series Children of the Gods. Book one in the series, Oppression, became a Barnes & Noble best-seller shortly after its release. Her trilogy has been translated and sold through major publishers around the world, such as Editions AdA (Canada), EditionsMilan (France), and SharpPoint Press (China).

Aside from her Children of the Gods series, Jessica is the author of a kid’s picture book called The Loneliest Whale. Her award-winning stories can also be found in a published anthology of flash fiction.

Jessica currently lives in Irvine with her husband and two young sons. She is working on a YA suspense thriller series and a middle-grade fantasy series.

🔸Website 🔸 Goodreads 🔸 Facebook 🔸 Twitter 🔸

GIVEAWAY!

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Normally when I review a book, I like to do a little plot summary before I get started.  Because this review is part of a blog tour, you can see all of the promotional info about the plot above.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, I want to start off by saying that I initially requested to join this blog tour because this book sounded really unique and interesting.  YA tends to fall into the same tropes over and over and over again – and there’s nothing wrong with that and I love a lot of those tropes – but sometimes it’s nice to read something different.  I saw on Goodreads that Carry Me Home had some really mixed reviews and went in really hoping to love it.

And I liked it.  Honestly, to say that I loved it is a bit of a stretch.  It’s hard for me to love a book like this.  Objectively, I can tell you that it’s a really good story.  Subjectively, it was a lot for me to handle.  It’s about as far from my comfort zone as you can get while still remaining in that YA zone.  And that doesn’t mean that it’s a bad book.  In fact, it’s really well-written.  But I tend to stay more on the fluff-side of YA and there is absolutely nothing fluffy about Carry Me Home.

Let’s get one thing straight: this is not the kind of book that you just lazily read on a quiet afternoon.  This is not a beach read or something that you read to unwind before going to bed.  This is a gritty, violent, cautionary tale about the horrible things that can happen to your family members without you even realizing.  The fights, the shootings, the rape and the murder… it stayed with me.  I had trouble falling asleep.  I found myself just sitting at my desk and thinking about these fictional characters while I should have been working.  Instead of doing my actual job, I was sitting there thinking, Is this the world that we live in?  Do I need to worry about my hypothetical future children getting involved in gangs like this?  

I would actually say that my response to this book is a good thing.  Jessica Therrien immersed me in this world of gangs and violence and drugs and it was all I could think about for days.  I had initially rated this book lower because I couldn’t really claim to enjoy reading it, but thinking back, it was really good.  It’s not for the faint of heart, but it’s certainly worth your time.

Thanks to Xpresso Book Tours for the complimentary ARC in exchange for my honest review.

Final rating: ★★★★☆

 

 

 

 

 

 

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