Monday, April 29, 2013

The Best of Us by Sarah Pekkanen

This would make a great beach read…fast paced, fun, with just the right amount of drama.  Fans of good chick lit a la Jennifer Weiner and Sophie Kinsella will want to give this a try…preferably on the beach with umbrella drink in hand.

Book Description via Amazon

Release date: April 9, 2013

An all-expense-paid week at a luxury villa in Jamaica—it’s the invitation of a lifetime for a group of old college friends. All four women are desperate not just for a reunion, but for an escape: Tina is drowning under the demands of mothering four young children. Allie is shattered by the news that a genetic illness runs in her family. Savannah is carrying the secret of her husband’s infidelity. And, finally, there’s Pauline, who spares no expense to throw her wealthy husband an unforgettable thirty-fifth birthday celebration, hoping it will gloss over the cracks already splitting apart their new marriage.

Languid hours on a private beach, gourmet dinners, and late nights of drinking kick off an idyllic week for the women and their husbands. But as a powerful hurricane bears down on the island, turmoil swirls inside the villa, forcing each of the women to reevaluate everything she knows about her friends—and herself.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

Sigh the end of a trilogy…so sad…especially *this* trilogy.  While this was my least favorite book (and Luis is my least favorite brother lol) I still loved, loved, loved the series as a whole.  AND the epilogue…I LOVED the epilogue…without giving any spoilers, the epilogue held a particular special place in my heart.
On a side note... I am trying something  new...I love book trailers (and Simone Elkeles has done an amazing job with mini movies...really).  So I am including book trailers with my reviews....Enjoy!!!

Book Description via Amazon

Release date: August 16, 2011 | Series: Perfect Chemistry

Luis Fuentes has always been sheltered from the gang violence that nearly destroyed his brothers’ lives. But that didn’t stop him from taking risks — whether he’s scaling a mountain in the Rockies or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis can’t stop looking for the next thrill. Nikki Cruz lives her life by three rules — boys lie to get their way, don’t trust a boy who says “I love you,” and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Her parents may be from Mexico, but as a doctor’s daughter, she has more in common with her north-side neighbors than the Latino Blood at her school. Then she meets Luis at Alex’s wedding, and suddenly, she’s tempted to break all her rules. Getting Nikki to take a chance on a south sider is Luis’s biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by Chuy Soto, the new head of the Latino Blood. When Chuy reveals a disturbing secret about Luis’s family, the youngest Fuentes finds himself questioning everything he’s ever believed to be true. Will his feelings for Nikki be enough to stop Luis from entering a dark and violent world and permanently living on the edge?


Friday, April 19, 2013

Between Heaven and Earth by Eric Walters (Seven the Series)

This is a great start to a new series that is perfect for boys.  First there is little to no romance…it is really hard to find a young adult book that doesn’t have some form of romance.  Second the story was very face paced and not super long.  I think that is important for *some* boys….especially those reluctant readers.  Great for ages 10 and up.

Book Description via Amazon

Release date: October 10, 2012 | Age Range: 10 and up | Series: Seven the series

DJ is David McLean's eldest grandson, so it stands to reason that he be the one to scatter his beloved grandfather's ashes. At least that's how DJ sees it. He's always been the best at everything--sports, school, looking after his fatherless family--so climbing Kilimanjaro is just another thing he'll accomplish almost effortlessly. Or so he thinks, until he arrives in Tanzania and everything starts to go wrong. He's detained at immigration, he gets robbed, his climbing group includes an old lady and he gets stuck with the first ever female porter. Forced to go polepole (slowly), DJ finds out the hard way that youth, fitness level and drive have nothing to do with success on the mountain--or in life.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles

Book Description
Release date: April 13, 2010

Carlos Fuentes doesn't want any part of the life his older brother, Alex, has laid out for him in Boulder, Colorado. He wants to keep living on the edge, and carve his own path—just like Alex did. Unfortunately, his ties to a Mexican gang aren't easy to break, and he soon finds himself being set up by a drug lord.

When Alex arranges for Carlos to live with his former professor and his family to keep him from being sent to jail, Carlos feels completely out of place. He's even more thrown by his strong feelings for the professor's daughter, Kiara, who is nothing like the girls he's usually drawn to. But Carlos and Kiara soon discover that in matters of the heart, the rules of attraction overpower the social differences that conspire to keep them apart.

As the danger grows for Carlos, he's shocked to discover that it's this seemingly All-American family who can save him. But is he willing to endanger their safety for a chance at the kind of life he's never even dreamed possible?

Monday, April 15, 2013

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles


One of the teens working at my library told me that I “HAVE to read this book!!!” …and I am so glad I did (I finished it in one day because I just couldn’t put it down.)  It is a West Side Story redo…he’s a member of the Latino Bloods and she’s the pretty captain of the cheerleading squad.  And while it seems like this story line has been done to death, the author makes it feel new.  I also loved that while this is part of a trilogy (each book is about one of the Fuentes brothers) the author completes each story line…no annoying cliffhangers at the end.  I have the next book on request at the library and the sixteen year old in me is swooning in anticipation.

From School Library Journal

Grade 10 Up—Told in alternating narratives, Perfect Chemistry portrays a romance between two unlikely lab partners. Brittany is her Chicago high school's "golden girl" but few of her friends know that her parents are totally dysfunctional and that she is highly invested in caring for her physically and mentally disabled older sister. Alex is a member of the Latino Blood, but he wishes he could leave gang life and pursue a college career. The plot thickens as Alex accepts a bet from a friend that he cannot bed Brittany by Thanksgiving. Smoldering doesn't quite do justice to the romantic banter that sparks between them. As the story unfolds, Alex is incarcerated and later hospitalized. Raw language and Spanish phrases that Anglo readers might feel obligated to investigate further are peppered throughout. The pace picks up too quickly at the end, leaving readers wondering if they missed something as time that has previously been marked day by day begins to clip along in five-month increments. Overall though, this is a solid romance that's suitable for reluctant readers.—Leah Krippner, Harlem High School, Machesney Park, IL
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

A romance that takes place on a winery in the Finger Lakes…I’ll drink to that.  This was perfect…I loved the setting (a winery in one of my favorite places in NY), the characters, the romance.  I *may* have been the crazy lady sitting in the parking lot of my doctor’s office for an hour just because I couldn’t put it down… yeah, it’s that good (and it is the beginning of a series!!!)

Book Description
Release date: February 26, 2013

Sometimes the best man is the one you least expect…

Faith Holland left her hometown after being jilted at the altar. Now a little older and wiser, she's ready to return to the Blue Heron Winery, her family's vineyard, to confront the ghosts of her past, and maybe enjoy a glass of red. After all, there's some great scenery there….
Like Levi Cooper, the local police chief—and best friend of her former fiance. There's a lot about Levi that Faith never noticed, and it's not just those deep green eyes. The only catch is she's having a hard time forgetting that he helped ruin her wedding all those years ago. If she can find a minute amidst all her family drama to stop and smell the rosé, she just might find a reason to stay at Blue Heron, and finish that walk down the aisle.

Monday, April 8, 2013

This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith

My, oh, my, did I love this book!!!  First…any book that starts with a super cute e-mail thread has me hooked (think Meg Cabot’s The Boy Next Door).  Second, I love, love, love alternating points of view…we get to see what really is going on in his head.  Finally, the absolute swoon worthy romance…sigh…makes me want to be sixteen again (kinda).

Book Description

Release date: April 2, 2013

If fate sent you an email, would you answer?

When teenage movie star Graham Larkin accidentally sends small town girl Ellie O'Neill an email about his pet pig, the two seventeen-year-olds strike up a witty and unforgettable correspondence, discussing everything under the sun, except for their names or backgrounds.

Then Graham finds out that Ellie's Maine hometown is the perfect location for his latest film, and he decides to take their relationship from online to in-person. But can a star as famous as Graham really start a relationship with an ordinary girl like Ellie? And why does Ellie want to avoid the media's spotlight at all costs?