Tuesday, June 26, 2012

If I Stay

Review of: If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Release date: April 2nd, 2009
Pages: 208
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Received for review: Electronic copy for Nook checked out from library
Overall Grade: B

17-year-old Mia has a great life. She has loving parents and a sweet younger brother. Her boyfriend adores her and she may even have a chance at getting in to Juilliard with her amazing skills on the Cello. But one random snowy morning everything changes. Her family decides on an impromptu outing once they realize the snow isn’t sticking around. The next thing Mia knows she’s standing on the side of the road listening to the music still playing in the torn up car and seeing her parents sprawled out on the pavement. She is having a sort of out of body experience and can’t feel anything that has happened to her own body but she can feel grief. In a matter of seconds her whole life has changed and now she needs to make a choice. Should she stay or should she go?

This was a fairly short book and I finished it in a day. It was heart wrenching and I cried several times. The book flips between the day of the accident and Mia’s life experiences from the past so that we can get to know what her life was like before the accident which in turn just made it that much more sad for me. But the writing was fantastic and I was drawn into the book immediately. I just had to know what Mia’s fate was.  The ending left it open for a follow up book and it’s already out, Where She Went. It’s already on hold at my library. I’m definitely excited for it to become available. If you're in the mood for a book to pull at your heart strings and make you tear up then definitely check this one out. If you don't feel like crying then I'd stay away, lol.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Darlings in Love

Review of: The Darlings in Love by Melissa Kantor
Release date: January 3rd, 2012
Pages: 320
Publisher: Hyperion
Received for review: Checked out from library
Overall Grade: B

The Darlings are back and they’re in love!  

Victoria and Jack are hot and heavy, at least for a while. Not long after their romance begins Victoria starts to realize that it seems as if Jack would rather spend time with his friends and doing things a songwriter ought to be doing than spend time with her. Sure, he wants to be around Victoria but he wants her to do the things he always wants to do and never vis versa. This is quickly getting on Victoria's nerves.

After the disaster with Colin (him making Natalya choose between him or his sister) Natalya is down in the dumps. Colin was the perfect boy to her. But all of a sudden Colin is making appearances in her life again and is soon talking to her like nothing ever happened. Natalya’s heart soars until Colin mentions that he “sort of has a girlfriend.” How could this be possible?!

Jane meets super cute Simon at her school and is thrown into doing a scene with him for their school’s night of great love scenes with Mark as the director.  Jane is immediately attracted to Simon. He’s handsome and sweet, what’s not to love? Simon seems to be in to Jane too but he’s keeping a secret that might put a damper on their budding relationship. 

This was a great second book in The Darlings series. I’m not exactly sure how many books Melissa plans to write about The Darlings but I am sure loving these books! I read The Darlings Are Forever last year and I didn’t even know this book existed so I was definitely excited to find it at the library. I was even more excited when it turned out to be just as good as the first book, maybe even a little better. What can I say, I’m a sucker for love stories. I love Victoria, Natalya, and Jane too of course. They all have such different personalities and I love how close of friends they are and how they don’t let boys interfere with their long lasting friendship. I’d recommend this book to anyone looking for a good contemporary read full of best friends, some drama, and boys!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Lola and the Boy Next Door

Review of: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Release date: September 29th, 2011
Pages: 384
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Received for review: Electronic copy for Nook (checked out from library)
Overall Grade: A+

Lola Nolan has always been sort of out there. Her outfits are outrageous and she loves it. She can’t stand wearing plain old clothes. She just recently turned 17 and is loving life. Summer vacation is almost over and she’s making the best of it with her hot rocker boyfriend, Max, who is 22 and who her fathers definitely don’t approve of. She has a great best friend and her life is going pretty well. That is until the Bell twins appear out of nowhere, Cricket and Calliope. They are moving back in to the house next door yet again and all of a sudden Lola is having a tough time. She has some history with Cricket (some of it not very good history) and she’s freaking out now that he’s back. Lola is suddenly overwhelmed by feelings for Cricket which she desperately wants to push away because she loves Max, and of course because of the past. But is that really what she needs to be doing?
This was a companion novel to Anna and the French Kiss and I was totally shocked to see an appearance of Anna and Etienne! It was a surprise and their characters fit in to the book pretty well too. I fell in love with this book just like I did with Anna and the French Kiss. I loved Lola’s personality and her fathers cracked me up. I really liked the way Stephanie put the whole story together with all the different characters, and I really liked Cricket. I could totally understand why Lola would fall for the cute and lanky inventor boy next door. Everything about this book was so great and I’d highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for a great contemporary novel.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Anna and the French Kiss

Review of: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Release date: December 2nd, 2010
Pages: 372
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Received for review: Electronic copy for Nook (checked out from library)
Overall Grade: A+

This was an amazing contemporary YA novel. I was hooked immediately. 

Anna Oliphant is entering her senior year at a boarding school in Paris all thanks to her suddenly rich father. Anna is not happy about being shipped off to Paris for her senior year, leaving her best friend, her job at the movie theater, and her crush behind. But soon after arriving at the school she meets Etienne St. Claire, a fellow senior. She becomes friends with Etienne's close friends and becomes close friends with Etienne as well despite the fact that he has a girlfriend in college nearby. Anna and Etienne are in a bit of an awkward situation but that doesn't stop them from getting close. Anna sure isn't upset about coming to Paris now, is she?

I loved this book. Stephanie Perkins is such a great writer. This is the first book I had read by her. One of my close friends (fellow blogger, Amanda's Blog) recommended this book since it is one of her favorites so I had to check it out. I instantly fell in love with Etienne and I loved Anna's character. The secondary characters in the book were also great. It is one of the best contemporary books I've ever read and I highly recommend checking it out. Also, check out Lola and the Boy Next Door. It is written by Stephanie as well and it does not disappoint!