Friday, December 19, 2014

Review of Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas


Title/Author: Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas
Publisher/Date published: Harper Teen, December 9th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Top Five Things That Are Ruining Chloe’s Day

5) Working the 6:30 a.m. shift at GoodFoods Market

4) Crashing a cart into a customer’s car right in front of her snarky coworker Sammi

3) Trying to rock the “drowned rat” look after being caught in a snowstorm

2) Making zero progress with her crush, Tyson (see #3)

1) Being accused — along with her fellow teenage employees — of stealing upwards of $10,000

Chloe would rather be anywhere than locked in work jail (aka the break room) with five of her coworkers... even if one of them is Tyson. But if they can band together to clear their names, what looks like a total disaster might just make Chloe’s list of Top Ten Best Moments.

So I heard this was a little like The Breakfast Club before I started reading it and guys, it is and it is totally cute!

It's been a month since I read this and I'm still smiling when I think of Chloe's list-making tendencies, which are AWESOME and seriously, I had so much fun with their weird customer moments cause when I was in high school I worked at our local supermarket and some people have a weird combination of groceries. For real, I could tell you things I have seen that are just weird. Also, people are weird, which is awesome on its own.

I really liked Chloe and loved how she was crushing on Tyson and then I wanted to shake her cause she's not dealing with her diabetes and just I wanted to hug this girl, ok? She's adorable and I see things of myself in her and it was fun. I also liked the other employees, they were a nice set of people, and OMG the home-schooled boy whose name I can't remember was THE BEST. I think he has the biggest heart of the bunch.

I was a bit WTF at their manager making them stay after hours on Christmas Eve when he has zero evidence that one of them has stolen the money, I mean, I would have told our manager just what he could do with his accusations (or rather, I would stare at him menacingly until he got the message) and leave. Seriously, he can't just do that. But as there wouldn't be a story otherwise, I will let it slide just this once.

If you're in for a cute, quick, fun read, then Top Ten Clues You're Clueless is your book. Go forth and have fluffly moments.

My rating: 3,5 stars

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Review of Return of the Bad Girl by Codi Gary


Title/Author: Return of the Bad Girl (Rock Canyon Romance #4) by Codi Gary
Publisher/Date published: Avon Impulse, December 30th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley

Goodreads summary: Bad girls don't forgive.
Bad girls don't forget.
Bad girls don't fall in love.

Caroline Willis may be known for causing trouble, but she is NOT about to become homeless. So when she learns that her perfect apartment has been double-booked — to a dangerously hot bad boy — Caroline's bad-girl reputation comes out in full force. He may be sexy as sin, but she's not afraid of him... or his panty-melting smile.

Rock Canyon's got room for only one bad attitude — and Gabe Moriarty was here first. Still, starting over means playing it smart, so while sharing his new apartment is less than ideal, it's worth getting his dream business off the ground. Not to mention that it means shacking up with a sexy wild child. Caroline may be giving him the cold shoulder, but Gabe always was good at starting fires...

Caroline vows to keep things professional with Gabe, but as close quarters begin to ignite the sizzling chemistry between them, she's left wondering: Bad boy plus bad girl equals nothing but trouble... right?

I enjoyed Good Girls Don't Date Rock Stars, the second book in this series and haven't read the other two yet, but I have to say that I wasn't much a fan of Return of the Bad Girl.

As I'm sitting typing this review, I'm not even all that sure why exactly I finished reading it, because I wasn't all that into the romance. Which is kinda the point of a romance novel, right? I think it might be due to the fact that Return of the Bad Girl has two adorable teeny tiny kittens in it and I'm a sucker for anything feline ever since we got a cat ourselves a couple of months ago. And as I was away from home all week, I craved a cat companion no matter if it was just a fictional one. Or two.

Caroline and Travis have both had a tough past and are both more than a little damaged by it. They both have scars and that feels right considering everything. The one thing that I can't figure out is why there's nothing about Travis' five years in prison in the book. I mean, it's mentioned, but that's it. Nothing about his experiences there, which felt off to me. I mean, that's a big part of your life and it's gonna shape you somehow.

I was wondering why their parents were so sucky, even if Caroline's father comes around after she confesses her big secret to him. She and her father should really learn to communicate better. And while I really liked the small town vibe in Good Girls Don't Date Rock Stars, it really annoyed me in Return of the Bad Girl, because everyone was so judgmental and just plain mean. And how are there so many sleazeballs in such a tiny place?

But mostly the problem was that I wasn't feeling it. I wasn't feeling the romance and the drama and was a bit like yeah, maybe you shouldn't be together. Which is not what you want to be thinking when you should be rooting for a couple.

My rating: 1,5 stars

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Review of Wild by Sophie Jordan


Title/Author: Wild (The Ivy Chronicles #3) by Sophie Jordan
Publisher/Date published: Avon, November 18th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Months after her boyfriend dumped her, Georgia can still hear the insults he hurled at her. Boring. Predictable. Tame. Tired of feeling bad, she’s ready to change her image, and go a little wild. What better way to prove her ex wrong than a hot night of sexual adventure at the secret campus kink club?

In the shadowy den of the kink club, she unexpectedly runs into Logan Mulvaney, her friend’s little brother. A player extraordinaire too hot for his own good, he may be younger, but the guy is light years ahead when it comes to sexual experience. Now he’s telling her to go home — “good girls” don’t belong here!

Georgia is tired of having others define her. She’s going to teach Logan a lesson he won’t forget — one white hot, mind-wrecking kiss... that leads to another... and another... and... Realizing she’s way in over her head, Georgia runs.

Only Logan won’t let her go. Everywhere she goes he’s there, making her want every inch of him. Making her forget who she is. Who he is. And just how wrong they are for each other.

You guys, I rely on Sophie Jordan to bring me the swoons. And she did it again!

I absolutely loved the chemistry between Georgia and Logan and how the fact that he's a little younger and younger brother to one of her friends added a very believable embarassment and drama-inducing factor. I mean, it's not like it's wrong if the girl is older, but you don't see it often, but hey, you fall in love with a person, not their age, right? And also, Logan sounds totally hot and very mature (unlike most 18-year-old boys I know). I was definitely shippping it. Georgia becomes a more daring version of herself when she's around him and I think she turns his world upside down, so I felt like they were affecting each other equally. And I liked it.

Georgia is smart, careful, a little too oppressed by her mother and also a caring person who is afraid to give her heart away, but does it anyway. At one point I was so rooting for her to have it out with her mother and just find out WHY she was so hell bent on getting Georgia and Harris back together, because OMG, that guy is a douche and why would a mother want her daughter to be with a guy who CHEATED on her?? I don't get it. My mom would definitely NOT be encouraging it, especially not if I'd made it clear that I wasn't interested in him anymore. So what gives?

Logan is a beautiful boy. He sounds beyond delicious and just made me swoon with all his maleness and putting it all out there and then getting his heart stomped on and OMG how COULD SHE? I mean, I GET it, sort of, but UGH, poor Logan. I loved that even after all that's been going on in his life since he was a kid, he's still this warm, loving guy who's protective of his friends.

So like I said, the age difference and the fact that he's her friend's brother makes for some stomach-clenchingly good drama and I stayed up till 2 AM to finish it even though I had to get up at 6.30 the following morning. I could literally not sleep before I knew they'd be having a happily ever after and I was swooning all through the end and it was just awesome.
I'd definitely recommend trying Wild for yourself and finding out just why I love Sophie Jordan's writing so much!

My rating: 5 stars

Zoë stamp of approval:

Cuddling the bear like I'd cuddle Logan ;)

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Review of Killer Instinct by Jennifer Lynn Barnes


Title/Author: Killer Instinct (The Naturals #2) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Publisher/Date published: Disney-Hyperion, November 4th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Seventeen-year-old Cassie Hobbes has a gift for profiling people. Her talent has landed her a spot in an elite FBI program for teens with innate crime-solving abilities, and into some harrowing situations. After barely escaping a confrontation with an unbalanced killer obsessed with her mother’s murder, Cassie hopes she and the rest of the team can stick to solving cold cases from a distance.

But when victims of a brutal new serial killer start turning up, the Naturals are pulled into an active case that strikes too close to home: the killer is a perfect copycat of Dean’s incarcerated father — a man he’d do anything to forget. Forced deeper into a murderer’s psyche than ever before, will the Naturals be able to outsmart the enigmatic killer’s brutal mind games before this copycat twists them into his web for good?

***WARNING: POSSIBLE SPOILER FOR FIRST BOOK IN THE SERIES***

Guys, I absolutely loved The Naturals, the first book in this series and obviously I was excited to read Killer instinct. And I was right to expect awesomeness again!

I cannot help but love Cassie, she's smart, she's loyal to her friends and she just wants to help people. The crazy stuff that went down in The Naturals definitely has its effect on her, but she's not letting it get her down and I respect that. Though I couldn't help but feel there should have maybe been a little bit more about the effects of it and I felt like it wasn't really being handled by adults. They didn't really seem to be all that worried about it. But other than that I was so with her in her insecurities about the boys and her initial dislike of the newest adult addition to the team and basically I just love her for her mind. It's SO creepy what she can do, yet so incredibly awesome. I really don't wish that I could do that, but following her thought process is very cool.

And the plot Jennifer Lynn Barnes crafts is just genius! I mean, I saw one tiny detail of it coming, but mostly mind = blown. There's so much more to all of it than you think at first sight and I loved being thrown for a loop a couple of times. It kept me on the edge of my seat, wanting to know what the heck was going on! I read this book while we were on holiday in Rome and I even found myself thinking about it while we were visiting all these beautiful sights in the city, so that's definitely saying something!

One thing I'm going to address as well: the love triangle. There is one. And I really didn't mind it. It's very well done and let's just say that I'm happy with Cassie's choice.
I loved reconnecting with the whole set of characters, minus one for obvious reasons, and learning more about them, I love the whole group, faults and all.

Don't let Jennifer Lynn Barnes' innocent looks fool you, she has a devious mind! I totally loved all the twists and turns and just how real it felt and how I believed in what was happening and was sucked into the story and FEELS and just a whole lot of yes! You should definitely read this series, it's smart and has some amazing well-rounded characters. And just do it, ok?

My rating: 5 stars

Zoë stamp of approval:

(Just look at that smile :) tiny cat is tiny)

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Review of An Heiress For All Seasons by Sophie Jordan


Title/Author: An Heiress For All Seasons (The Debutante Files #1.5) by Sophie Jordan
Publisher/Date published: Avon Impulse, November 4th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: When a holiday blizzard brings together a pair of reluctant lovers, the result threatens their reputations... and may cost them their hearts.

Feisty and independent American heiress Violet Howard swears she'll never wed a crusty British aristocrat. Will, the Earl of Moreton, is determined to salvage his family's fortune without succumbing to a marriage of convenience.

But when a snowstorm leaves Violet and Will stranded and alone, their sudden chemistry will challenge good intentions. Seized by a desire that burns through the night, they'll toss reservations aside in favor of the heat found in each other's arms.

Will their passion survive the storm? Will they realize they've found a love to last them through all seasons?

You guys, Sophie Jordan is brilliant. She just knows how to bring the feelings and the chemistry and the awesome and just all I want from a historical romance novel! I always know I'll love it whenever I open up one of her books and An Heiress for All Seasons was no exception.

It's a novella, and while those are not my favourite as a concept, I did really love this one. It's short and sweet, yet a believable lovestory and these two just felt right together. I loved how there was real conflict and TENSION and OMG, that scene at the end! My heart!
I really liked both Violet and Will and how they're both working under misconceptions and just ALL OF IT.

You should really just pick up this novella and find out for yourself. Or basically any of Sophie Jordan's other historical romances, they're all amazing. Promise.

My rating: 5 stars

Friday, October 31, 2014

Review of A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray


Title/Author: A Thousand Pieces of You (Firebird #1) by Claudia Gray
Publisher/Date published: Harper Teen, November 4th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer — her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul — escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.

Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt — and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined.

A Thousand Pieces of You explores a reality where we witness the countless other lives we might lead in an amazingly intricate multiverse, and ask whether, amid infinite possibilities, one love can endure.

Ok, so I liked the concept of A Thousand Pieces of You, because hello fascination with parallel worlds, but I had a couple of issues with the way it was executed.

But first let's go with the stuff I liked: I really liked how every universe was different and how one of them was alike except for some crucial details. I loved seeing what new things they would stumble on next and especially the one where Marguerite was Russian royalty. That was awesome. Her older brother was one of my favourite characters, he's awesome, like a brother should be.
I also liked Marguerite's temper, she's quick to jump to conclusions and it was a rather interesting flaw, cause it sets things in motion. And I definitely liked the science of it all, I would KILL (not literally, obviously) for a Firebird of my own. I mean, come on, how cool would it be to travel to other dimensions and get answers to all my WHAT IFs. Seriously, get me one of those things.

So the overall concept was entertaining, but like I said, I do have some issues with it as well. I was REALLY annoyed at the love triangle. I mean, COME ON. One minute she's almost having sex with one of the guys and then she's realising she's actually in love with the other one? I mean, are you kidding me?? It's cruel to the guy and I did not like it at all. I get you can be confused, but seriously, that was a step too far for me. And also: if you tell one guy that 'every Marguerite' loves him, how can you justify not knowing how you feel about him in another dimension? At the moment it was really sweet, but after she has these doubts about her feelings for the other version of him I was like, ok, did you just say that to get him to sleep with you? Also, how do you go from having a non-physical relationship to having sex in basically 5 minutes after you've kissed for the first time? I'm not slut-shaming, it was just all up in my face all of a sudden and I was like WAIT, WHAT just happened???
I'm just not a fan of the romance, and it was a pretty big part of the story.

The other thing that doesn't add up in my mind is that when you use the Firebird, the body you have in your own dimension disappears. HOW? And where does it go?? The Firebird is only meant to take your spirit, so why does your body vanish? I get that it's handy, cause else you couldn't be gone for months and all, cause you know, a body doesn't survive well without someone to feed it and everything. But it makes no sense. I know it may be a minor detail, but it really bugged me.

There's this creepy corporate intrigue going on and I'm not really sure how I feel about it, but I'm interested enough to maybe pick up the next book and find out what the heck's going on.

My rating: 3 stars

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Review of The Viscount Who Lived Down the Lane by Elizabeth Boyle


Title/Author: The Viscount Who Lived Down the Lane (Rhymes With Love #4) by Elizabeth Boyle
Publisher/Date published: Avon, October 28th 2014
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: She has no desire for love...

As she arrives in Mayfair, Louisa Tempest is horrified when her incorrigible cat bolts from the carriage and dashes into a neighbor's house, where she comes face-to-face with the reclusive Viscount Wakefield. But even more dismaying than his foul temper is the disarray in which she finds his home. Convinced his demeanor would improve if his household were in order, Louisa resolves to put everything to rights.

...until she meets the viscount who lives down the lane.

Much to his chagrin, Wakefield finds it impossible to keep the meddling Louisa out of his home, invading his daily life with her "improvements," and his nights with the tempting desires she sparks inside him. Wounded in the war, he's scorned society ever since his return... until Louisa opens the door to his heart and convinces him to give love a second chance.

So guys, The Viscount Who Lived Down the Lane was a very enjoyable read, I read most of it as part of Dewey's Read-a-thon (which in case you've never heard of it, is an AWESOME event that happens twice a year) and it fit really well as a starter for 24 hours of reading!

I liked Louisa, though I probably would have been REALLY annoyed as well if she just stepped into my life and started interfering with the way things were done in my home. I mean, sure, things could use a little improving for Wakefield, but Louisa really is very meddlesome. I don't blame him for banning her from his house.
But it did make for some fun reading. Cause obviously she's a little headstrong and doesn't stop when he tells her to, but just sort of sidesteps his objections. And her cat helps. He is awesome. As a proud cat owner myself, I totally laughed at the antics of the feline, it was one of my favourite things of the novel!

So Louisa and Wakefield have chemistry and obviously they're falling in love and it's really sweet, I also particularly liked Wakefield's sister, she has spunk! And is exactly as annoying as a younger sister should be (I know, I'm a younger sister myself). There are some side plots with their own romances as well, which was a fun addition. Wakefield has issues and Louisa has issues and it all just came together beautifully, though I am wondering how they're going to deal with the rest of the ton after the story ends.

To sum it up: The Viscount Who Lived Down the Lane was a lovely read, but I kind of missed the deep emotion that I usually feel while reading a historical romance. But it did have a cat (that didn't die or was in danger in any way during the novel), which gives you bonus points any day.

My rating: 3,5 stars