Saturday, February 28, 2015

I'll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios Review

If seventeen-year-old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straightedge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.

Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.
Published February 2015. Stand alone. Check it out on Goodreads!
5 stars

Where to start with this book... well I read a contemporary book Heather wrote last year, I think it was her debut novel and I enjoyed it a lot. So I figured I'd give this one a chance and lemme tell you, I was really glad that I did. This isn't a very happy story, I mean yes, it is. But it's not a fluffy story that's mostly happy all the way through. It's pretty straight forward that some of the things in the characters lives suck. It's one of those that's rather on the line between young adult and new adult. I like these as that's almost where I am myself. It felt real and and raw to me and my mood the days I was reading this book felt like it matched the author's style and what was happening just great. 

So you have Skylar, who just wants to get out of the dead country town that she grew up in that she feels is holding her back. When her somewhat friend, Josh, comes back from being overseas as a marine he doesn't come back the same. He's lost a leg and he seems different. As things go wrong for both of them they begin to lean on each other and find solace in each other's company. I liked both of these characters, even if they were both idiots at times. They were really cute together as well. And if you're thinking, oh small town girl wanting to get out and then getting caught up blah blah, sounds cliche. It's not. I thought that a little at the beginning and it's not like that. Even if the basic idea is similar this book is its own book and it's great. Skylar's friends are great and her struggles are ones anyone could be going through.

There wasn't really much that I didn't like about this book. There were the odd evil/slightly evil characters that you're not meant to like. A few of Josh's chapters were confusing because you were still piecing together everything that had happened with him and weren't really given all the information until the end. But otherwise I don't think I had any problems with this book, I really enjoyed it. Content wise there is some sexual content but nothing extremely graphic. There is a good bit of language and some violence and death in some of Josh's flashbacks. Also a good deal of drinking, including some underage drinking.

Overall, I really loved this book. I loved the characters and the plot was pretty well developed, there were some nice twists but I think the main focus of the book was on the characters and their relationships. I think it's a relatable book and I found the situations of the characters felt real and I love the author's writing style with this book. If you like a good contemporary romance then I'd recommend this book.

Friday, February 13, 2015

All Fall Down by Ally Carter Review

A new series of global proportions -- from master of intrigue, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Ally Carter. 
This exciting new series from NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Ally Carter focuses on Grace, who can best be described as a daredevil, an Army brat, and a rebel. She is also the only granddaughter of perhaps the most powerful ambassador in the world, and Grace has spent every summer of her childhood running across the roofs of Embassy Row.
Now, at age sixteen, she's come back to stay--in order to solve the mystery of her mother's death. In the process, she uncovers an international conspiracy of unsettling proportions, and must choose her friends and watch her foes carefully if she and the world are to be saved.

Published January 2015. First book in the Embassy Row series.
3 stars

I've read several books by Ally Carter before, some of them have been misses for me and others I've loved. I had some expectations for this book and definitely hoped that I would love it. I didn't really love it, I had some issues with it...but it's still good. Let me paint the scene for you. You have a troubled teen, Grace, who is still suffering from her mother dying right in front of her. After being shipped from country to country with her dad and brother, who are both in the army, she's being sent back to a place she spent a lot of time at a long time ago. Back before her mother was killed. She's back at the Embassy in Adria (a fictional country that makes a very neat setting in the book). There she finds a man she thinks is guilty of her mother's murder...the only problem is that she's the only one who believes her mother's death wasn't an accident. So she begins a campaign, helped by a few friends, to discover what this man is really up to.

This sounds like a great book right? I thought so too, in fact I enjoyed the majority of this book. Maybe two/thirds of the way in however, things take a twist and I really start to doubt Grace and that took away from the whole book for me. Because I had doubts, everything she did seemed very illogical and sometimes even making me cringe. Ahem, but enough about what I didn't like. This is a fun book because it's set on Embassy Row in Adria, where all the ambassadors from different countries live and their children and offices and etc. etc. So that ends up giving you a very unique setting and cast of characters. It was definitely my favorite part of the book. Another cool aspect is that Grace and her friends all have unique skills and are rather like a junior spy team with all the tracking suspects and gathering information. That was definitely fun.

So overall, even though this book disappointed me it still had some things I enjoyed and I probably will read the next book in the series. Who knows, maybe the next book will be better. If this still sounds like a cool book to you, I'd encourage you to at least try it as I know others did end up enjoying more than I did. And there are definitely some cool parts that I would say it's worth reading for.