Sunday, August 31, 2014

Sunday Post - 112

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~this meme was inspired in part by ~ In My Mailbox~ It's a chance to share News. A post to recap the past week, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up for the week on our blog.

Amazingly enough, I didn't get any new books this week. But truthfully, I needed a week like this to catch up on review books. The week itself went by fairly fast and had some ups and downs. But I'm thankful for an extra long weekend. Happy Labor Day to my US friends.

THIS PAST WEEK:

Monday: Movie Review of If I Stay based on the novel by Gayle Forman (4 Stars) & 2014 Series Enders Reading Challenge - August Wrap Up
Tuesday: Top Ten Books I Want to Read But Don't Own Yet
Wednesday: Waiting on The Certainty of Violet & Luke (The Coincidence, # 5) by Jessica Sorensen
Thursday: Review of Shatter (True Believers, # 4) by Erin McCarthy (3.5 Stars)
Friday: Review of In Her Wake (Ten Tiny Breaths, # 0.5) by KA Tucker (4.5 Stars)

UPCOMING THIS WEEK:

Monday: August EOM Wrap Up
Tuesday: Review of Driftwood Tides by Gina Holmes
Wednesday: Waiting on Wednesday
Thursday: Review of Anatomy of a Misfit by Andrea Portes
Friday: Review of All Our Yesterdays (All Our Yesterdays, # 1) by Cristin Terrill

Don't forget to sign up for the 2014 Series Enders Reading Challenge! Each month there will be a giveaway for those participating with a BIG giveaway at the end of the year! Click on the picture below or the link above to find out more!

That's it for my shelves and recaps of my past and upcoming week. What did you add to your shelves this week? Any bookish news you want to talk about? Let me know!

Friday, August 29, 2014

In Her Wake - Review

In Her Wake (Ten Tiny Breaths, # 0.5)

By: KA Tucker

Expected Publication: September 1st 2014 by Atria Books

256 pages

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Before you knew him as Trent in Ten Tiny Breaths, he was Cole Reynolds—and he had it all. Until one night when he makes a fatal, wrong decision…and loses everything.

When a drunken night out at a Michigan State college party results in the death of six people, Cole must come to terms with his part in the tragedy. Normally, he’d be able to lean on his best friends—the ones who have been in his life since he could barely walk. Only, they’re gone. Worse, there’s the shattered body of a sixteen-year-old girl lying somewhere in a hospital bed, her entire life ripped from her because of a case of beer and a set of keys.

Everyone assures him that they know it wasn’t intentional, and yet he can’t ignore the weight of their gazes, the whispers behind his back. Nor can he shake the all-consuming guilt he feels every time he thinks of that girl who won’t so much as allow him near her hospital room to apologize. As the months go by and the shame and loneliness festers, Cole begins to lose his grip on what once was important—college, his girlfriend, his future. His life. It’s not until Cole hits rock-bottom that he can begin to see another way out of his personal hell: forgiveness.

And there’s only one person who can give that to him…

I wasn’t 100% sure what In Her Wake was going to be. I knew it would be from Trent’s POV, but I wasn’t 100% sure if it was pre-Ten Tiny Breaths or more of a retelling of Ten Tiny Breaths or a mixture of both. In Her Wake is a true prequel. This is Trent, where he was and what he went through, from slightly before the car accident until he follows Kacey to Miami. And honestly, I really appreciated that. I like for a book to be what it’s advertised to be.

In Her Wake isn’t a happy book though. As we know from Ten Tiny Breaths, Trent and Kacey are both involved in the same car crash. They’re both also the sole survivors from the vehicles they were in. Trent and his friends were drinking at a college party. Trent was supposed to be the designated driver, but he ended up drinking that night. He didn’t get behind the wheel, but he did let his best friend Sasha behind the wheel impaired. Granted, Trent wasn’t aware of how impaired Sasha was. Kacey was in the car on her way home from a rugby game with her parents, her best friend Jenny, and her boyfriend Billy. So I went into In Her Wake knowing that the accident was coming and knowing some of Trent’s actions that follow the accident. But what I didn’t really expect or prepare for was how deeply sad Trent’s story would be. It’s so easy to judge from afar. To see people’s mistakes and judge them—condemn them for it—especially if we’re collateral damage and hurt in the process. What I’ve learned from reading books that show both characters’ POVs is that I’m a lot more lenient with a character if I can see inside their head. In this case, Trent is so deeply broken after the accident. He feels so much guilt. It will never bring back those who didn’t survive the accident, but it also doesn’t make him less than human. He is still a person who is struggling and needs forgiveness.

Man, I feel like these characters are real. I feel like this is a story that’s happened in real life. I know that there are people out there who have experienced very similar events in their own lives. And it’s a testament to KA Tucker and her writing that it does feel so real to me. One of the best compliments that I can give to In Her Wake is that it planted within me the desire to re-read Ten Tiny Breaths so much that I have actually done just that. I’ve neglected all my reading responsibilities, and the backlog of other review books that I desperately need to get to, in order to re-read a book I’ve already experienced (and loved). I’m a re-reader anyway—when I can find the time—but In Her Wake made me decide to MAKE time.

I will say, that even though Trent came off a bit unhinged and cuckoo in Ten Tiny Breaths when Kacey found out who he was, In Her Wake probably didn’t help that any. I had no idea how much stalking Trent actually did. Seriously. I mean I’m not sure I can blame him—being obsessed with trying to make the life better of the one person who you had a hand in taking everything from--but he crossed some major creep boundaries lines. I can see where readers who struggle with this type of male character will not respond to this well at all. BUT, that didn’t bother me really.

In Her Wake gets 4.5 Stars from me. I didn’t all out cry, but I got a little misty-eyed. I don’t think In Her Wake was quite as good as Ten Tiny Breaths, but since I’m doing a re-read, I’ll be able to report back on that in more detail later. I’m also not sure why In Her Wake was classified as a novella since it’s around the same length as Tin Tiny Breaths. Have you read In Her Wake? What did you think? Let me know!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Shatter - Review

Shatter (True Believers, # 4)

By: Erin McCarthy

Expected Publication: September 1st 2014 by InterMix; September 2nd 2014 by Berkley Trade

304 pages

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--From the USA Today bestselling author of True, Sweet, and Believe comes a tantalizing New Adult novel about finding love in the most unexpected ways…

Kylie Warner prides herself on being optimistic, but after finding her best friend in bed with her boyfriend and flunking chemistry, her upbeat attitude has taken a dive. Even an impromptu hook-up with her sexy new chemistry tutor only brightens her mood slightly. After all, it’s not like she’ll ever see the tattooed scholar again…

While he’s a whiz at complex equations, Jonathon Kadisch has trouble when it comes to figuring out women. So when Kylie tells him that she’s pregnant after their night of passion, he’s at a complete loss. He’s prepared to be a good father—unlike his own deadbeat dad—but he’s less prepared to fall for the genuine and alluring blonde bearing his child.

With emotions running high, Kylie wonders if Jonathon’s devotion is out of growing love or looming obligation. And when heartbreak threatens to tear them apart, Jonathon will have to fight for the only girl who’s ever made him feel whole….

I was so excited to get my hands on Shatter. This series has been much better than I expected. The new adult genre has fallen into so many patterns that 85-90% of the books written in this genre (at least that I’ve read) are pretty predictable. And I’ve enjoyed the True Believers series because each book has had an aspect that I found to be a little different than the others in the genre. Believe is still my favorite of the series even after reading Shatter though.

In Believe we find out that Robin slept with Kylie’s boyfriend, Nathan. Granted she was super drunk and has made every effort possible to change her behavior in a way that shows remorse for her actions. But this hasn’t stopped Kylie from having a broken heart. Even when people are remorseful, their actions still have an impact on us that doesn’t just go away overnight. The damage has been done. Relationships will never be the same and hearts have been broken. So we start Shatter with Kylie still reeling from her recent heartbreak. She finds herself struggling in her chemistry class and meets up with a tutor to help her pass her exam. One thing leads to the other and Kylie and Jonathan (aka Darwin) end up having a steamy night together.

As the description says, Kylie and Jonathan’s night together results in an unexpected pregnancy. Both thought they would probably never see each other again, but instead find themselves tied to each other for the next eighteen years at least. Jonathan is determined to be there for Kylie and his unborn child, but that doesn’t mean that anything more will come from this pregnancy. He wants to remain on good terms with Kylie for the sake of their child, but having anything more, even if he might want it, could lead to heartbreak and a strained relationship between them in the future. At the same time, the two find themselves falling for each other. But Kylie needs to know that Jonathan isn’t investing in a relationship with her just because she ended up pregnant. She needs to know that he wants to be with her regardless.

I liked the play on the differences between Jonathan and Kylie. He’s crazy smart with books and science, but he’s often a typical male when it comes to figuring out a woman—clueless. Kylie is a bit lacking when it comes to book smarts. She’s kind of what people refer to as a "dumb-blonde." Yet she’s not dumb at all. She might not get Chemistry or science, but she’s smart in many other ways. I loved how this became a struggle for them in their relationship. Kylie has her insecurities when it comes to being smart, especially with how far ahead of her Jonathan is in this area. And she has baggage from her past and recent breakup with Nathan. But she works to overcome this.

Although, I felt like Kylie and Jonathan’s situation was realistic. It has happened to hundreds and possibly thousands of couples throughout history afterall. I connected to them, yet their story wasn’t my favorite at the same time. I often wanted to get annoyed with Kylie’s waterworks. She cries so much, but then I had to remind myself that she was pregnant and hormonal afterall. I hate that this series is over. But I enjoyed Erin McCarthy giving us a brief update on where all of the couples from this series have found themselves and where they’re all headed in a way that felt authentic to Kylie and Jonathan’s story and not just a random “ten years later” kind of epilogue.

Favorite quotes:

-“I’ll be really happy when these”…”skinny jeans go out of style.”

(Me too Darwin...me too!)

-Nothing like having to tell your chem prof that you’re pregnant with his grandchild.

-It was amazing to me that suddenly, within the span of an hour, my whole future had changed.

-For the first time, I realized the gap that would grow between my friends and I as surely as my baby would grow.

-I didn’t know how to play the game with someone like him, because I didn’t think that he knew that games existed.

-You’re not supposed to admit that your greatest ambition in life is to have a family.

Shatter gets 3.5 Stars from me. I enjoyed it. It was a quick read. I connected. But none of that particularly blew me away. It was a nice end to the series, but not my favorite of the series either. Have you read Shatter? What did you think? Let me know!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Waiting on The Certainty of Violet & Luke

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

The Certainty of Violet & Luke (The Coincidence, # 5)

By: Jessica Sorensen

Expected Publication: September 16th 2014

300 pages

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Amazon description--Violet Hayes’s life is a mess. Between her stalker, Preston, refusing to leave her alone, her parents’ case still being unsolved, and falling behind in school, she always feels on the verge of losing it. When some unexpected news comes her way, it’s the final straw and she ends up doing something that almost costs her life. Thankfully, she survives and makes a promise to herself to put her life back together and to try and figure out exactly how she feels about Luke Price, the one person that’s always there for her.

But as a recovering alcoholic and gambler, Luke has his own struggles to overcome. He’s also fallen in love with Violet, but fears telling her the truth, that it will scare her away or worse, she won’t reciprocate the feeling. Plus, there never seems to be a right time to say it, either the case, Preston, or life getting in the way.

Can the two of them ever get enough peace in their lives to conquer their fears and finally tell each other the truth about how they feel?

What are you waiting on this week? Let me know!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Top Ten Books I Want to Read But Don't Own

Top 10 Tuesday is a post hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and this week's topic is Top Ten Books I Want to Read But Don't Own.

  1. Ruins (Partials, # 3) by Dan Wells
  2. The Summer I Turned Pretty (Summer, # 1) by Jenny Han
  3. Until We Fly (Beautifully Broken, # 4) by Courtney Cole
  4. Unravel Me (Shatter Me, # 2) by Tahereh Mafi
  5. Beautiful Oblivion (Maddox Brothers, # 1/Beautiful, # 3) by Jamie McGuire
  6. Sempre: Redemption (Forever, # 2) by JM Darhower
  7. Split Second (Pivot Point, # 2) by Kasie West
  8. Where You Are (Between the Lines, # 2) by Tammara Webber
  9. The Runaway King (The Ascendance Trilogy, # 2) by Jennifer A Nielsen
  10. Thorn Queen (Dark Swan, # 2) by Richelle Mead
  11. Succubus On Top (Georgina Kincaid, # 2) by Richelle Mead
  12. Across the Universe (Across the Universe, # 1) by Beth Revis

Are any of these books you'd advise I go out and purchase today because they're that good? What about you? Which books are you dying to read but don't own yet? Let me know!