Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Underrated/Hidden Gem Books

Sometimes I come across a book that hasn't received a lot of buzz and I think to myself, why aren't more people reading this??!  When I saw this week's Top Ten Tuesday prompt, I got insanely excited because NOW I have a platform to shout these fantastic titles from! All of the below books are contemporary YA and have been published within the last five years. Please let me know in the comments if you've read any of them, or if you see something you might like to read. As always, I'm here for book talk!

Ten Underrated/Hidden Gem Books

Breakfast Served Anytime by Sarah Combs [add to goodreads]
Unbreak My Heart by Melissa Walker [add to goodreads]
In Honor by Jessi Kirby [add to goodreads]

Harmonic Feedback by Tara Kelly [add to goodreads]
Live Through This by Mindi Scott [add to goodreads]
The Survival Kit by Donna Freitas [add to goodreads]
Saving June by Hannah Harrington [add to goodreads]

The Piper's Son by Melina Marchetta [add to goodreads]
Where the Stars Still Shine by Trish Doller [add to goodreads]
The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler [add to goodreads]

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Thursday, December 29, 2016

2017 Books: What To Read!

With the new year just around the corner in a few days, I wanted to feature some of the books I am most looking forward to reading in 2017. I've got an ongoing list on my goodreads if you'd like to see all of my 2017 reads I've got an eye on: CLICK HERE - both YA & Adult. Below you'll find my most anticipated reads, aka the books I am dying to get my hands on & plan to read immediately when I do! Let me know in the comments if you plan to read any as well, or tell me what you're most looking forward to reading in the new year.

Dating You/Hating You by Christina Lauren
To be published: June 6, 2017
About the book: All’s fair in love and work. The first standalone romance by New York Times and #1 international bestselling author Christina Lauren (Beautiful Bastard) is a sexy, compulsively readable romantic comedy that dives headlong into the thrill and doubt of modern love.

Despite the odds against them from an embarrassing meet-awkward at a mutual friend’s Halloween party, Carter and Evie immediately hit it off. Even the realization that they’re both high-powered agents at competing firms in Hollywood isn’t enough to squash the fire.

But when their two agencies merge—causing the pair to vie for the same position—all bets are off. What could have been a beautiful, blossoming romance turns into an all-out war of sabotage. Carter and Evie are both thirtysomething professionals—so why can’t they act like it?

Can Carter stop trying to please everyone and see how their mutual boss is really playing the game? Can Evie put aside her competitive nature long enough to figure out what she really wants in life? Can their actor clients just be something close to human? Whether these two Hollywood love/hatebirds get the storybook Hollywood ending or just a dramedy of epic proportions, you will get to enjoy Christina Lauren’s heartfelt, raucous, and hilarious romance style at its finest. [goodreads]
If it's got Christina Lauren's name on it, you know I'm going to read it! This writing duo is one of my favorites when it comes to Adult contemporary romance, and this particular story has got me giddy with heart eyes. I am such a fan of hate-to-love stories when it's full of witty banter and fun sexual tension. This story has the makings of all that plus so much more. Is it June yet?!

Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han
To be published: May 2, 2017
About the book: Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.

Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.

But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.

When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to? [goodreads]
Pretty sure I'm one among thousands patiently waiting to read this one. I absolutely love Jenny Han, and these books about Lara Jean and Peter, so obviously I am anxious to see how their story will end with this one. Will my heart be able to take it?! I sure hope so!

Once and for All by Sarah Dessen
To be published: June 6, 2017
About the book: As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen's thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that's why she's cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm's length. But Ambrose isn't about to be discouraged, now that he's met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself. [goodreads]
It's not summertime unless there's a Sarah Dessen novel to read and I am extremely excited for her next book to be published just as summer 2017 begins! I'm a fan of all her stories, but this one in particular peeked my interest for the wedding planning detail and the cynical approach to romance and happily ever afters from the MC. Dessen has a knack for creating enticing storylines, yet keeping them real and soulfully satisfying. I can't wait for this one!

Kissing Max Holden by Katy Upperman
To be published: August 1, 2017
About the book: Kissing Max Holden was a terrible idea...

After his father has a life-altering stroke, Max Holden isn't himself. As his long-time friend, Jillian Eldridge only wants to help him, but she doesn't know how. When Max climbs through her window one night, Jill knows that she shouldn't let him kiss her. But she can't resist, and when they're caught in the act by her dad, Jill swears it'll never happen again. Because kissing Max Holden is a terrible idea.

With a new baby sibling on the way, her parents fighting all the time, and her dream of culinary school up in the air, Jill starts spending more and more time with Max. And even though her father disapproves and Max still has a girlfriend, not kissing Max is easier said than done. Will Jill follow her heart and allow their friendship to blossom into something more, or will she listen to her head and stop kissing Max Holden once and for all? [goodreads]
This is my most anticipated debut read of 2017! And we have to wait until August!! I've followed Katy on social media and it's been so much fun witnessing her joys of becoming published for the first time -- what an amazing accomplishment! I love everything about the set-up for this story, especially the boy next door with potential to be more. I have a feeling Katy is going to wow us with this one!

The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord
To be published: May 16, 2017
About the book: Lucy Hanson was ready for a perfect summer with her boyfriend, working at her childhood Bible camp on the lake. But when her mom’s cancer reappears, Lucy falters—in faith, in love, and in her ability to cope. When her boyfriend “pauses” their relationship and her summer job switches to a different camp—one for troubled kids—Lucy isn’t sure how much more she can handle. Attempting to accept a new normal, Lucy slowly regains footing among her vibrant, diverse coworkers, Sundays with her mom, and a crush on a fellow counselor. But when long-hidden family secrets emerge, can Lucy set aside her problems and discover what grace really means? [goodreads]
Oh I do love me some Emery Lord books. And this one has a recipe for pure deliciousness! If you're new to Lord's books then let me explain: She can write a well balanced humor, wit, and heartfelt goodness wrapped in a timeless tale. I'm really looking forward to how the character will work herself through these obstacles on life, faith, and relationships. If Emery Lord is writing it, you know it's going to be good.

The Secret History of Us by Jessi Kirby
To be published: August 1, 2017
About the book: Gorgeously written and emotionally charged, The Secret History of Us explores the difficult journey of a teenage girl who must piece her life together after losing her memory in a near-fatal accident.

When Olivia awakes in a hospital bed following a car accident that almost took her life, she can’t remember the details about how she got there. She figures the fog is just a symptom of being in a week-long coma, but as time goes on, she realizes she’s lost more than just the last several days of her life—she’s lost her memory of the last four years. Gone is any recollection of starting or graduating high school; the prom; or her steady boyfriend Matt. Trying to figure out who she is feels impossible when everyone keeps telling her who she was.

As Liv tries to block out what her family and friends say about who she used to be, the one person she hasn’t heard enough from is Walker, the guy who saved her the night her car was knocked off that bridge into the bay below. Walker is the hardened boy who’s been keeping his distance—and the only person Olivia inexplicably feels herself with. With her feelings growing for Walker, tensions rising with Matt, and secrets she can’t help but feel are being kept from her, Olivia must find her place in a life she doesn’t remember living. [goodreads]
I love a good story about memory loss and how the character must put the pieces back together in order to find themselves, yet discover a whole new person in the process. Jessi Kirby is such an underrated YA author, in my opinion. I've been reading her novels since her debut & they just keep getting better & better. This one intrigues me so much and I cannot wait to read it!

Bad Romance by Heather Demetrios
To be published: June 13, 2017
About the book: Grace wants out. Out of her house, where her stepfather wields fear like a weapon and her mother makes her scrub imaginary dirt off the floors. Out of her California town, too small to contain her big city dreams. Out of her life, and into the role of Parisian artist, New York director—anything but scared and alone.

Enter Gavin: charming, talented, adored. Controlling. Dangerous. When Grace and Gavin fall in love, Grace is sure it's too good to be true. She has no idea their relationship will become a prison she's unable to escape.

Deeply affecting and unflinchingly honest, this is a story about spiraling into darkness—and emerging into the light again. [goodreads]
I have a feeling this one might break my heart. But sometimes my heart seeks out these types of stories because I'm in need of something to hold on to. I really enjoyed Demetrios's prior contemporary YA, so I already know she can deliver when it comes to the hard stuff. Summer 2017 is shaping up to be a very intense and enjoyable season of reading.

Comfort Zone by Sally Thorne
To be published: Summer 2017

[There is no description posted yet, but since I loved The Hating Game so much, I want to read everything Sally Thorne writes! Be sure to check my blog as soon as more info is released.]

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

My 2016 of Reading Wrap Up Post

This has been an... interesting year. It's hard not to get all political and share my thoughts on all of that.  But I have chosen to keep this blog more about books (or at least in the realm of it). So instead of going off the deep end on how I really feel about 2016, I am going to share my thoughts on some of the books I read. In year's past I've participated in Jamie's End of Year Book Survey. I decided to do my own wrap-up of reading post, just a bit more condensed.

My "original" reading challenge goal: 100 books

My edited reading challenge goal: 80 books 
(I'm currently 6 books shy of this & it WILL happen!)

My most read genre: Adult Contemporary Romance 
(Because, duh!)

My number of re-reads: 12 
(This may increase before the official end of the year)


When someone asks, what was your favorite book(s) read in 2016? My answer is a two-way tie between these two:

Results May Vary by Bethany Chase [goodreads]
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne [goodreads]


I read a TON of adult romances this year, probably more than I ever have. But there's always my go-to romance authors I re-read and recommend to others. This year two of their adult series wrapped up and yes, it made me incredibly sad, but it also caused me to do a serious re-read binge.

Beautiful Bastard series by Christina Lauren [goodreads]
Wild Seasons series by Christina Lauren [goodreads]


With all this Adult romance talk, I can't leave out my favorite YA's I read this year. I started the year with one of them and did some revisits of favorites over the summer, too. But when someone asks me, what was your favorite young adult novel read in 2016, this is my answer:

The Last Boy and Girl in the World by Siobhan Vivian [goodreads]
Summer Skin by Kirsty Eagar [goodreads]


I had the honor of reading some 2017 releases super early and I already know they'll be favorites for next year. I couldn't leave them off this list, though. Be sure to add them to your TBR for 2017 and be prepared to be wow'ed!

Coming Up for Air by Miranda Kenneally [goodreads]
In a Perfect World by Trish Doller [goodreads]
Fireworks by Katie Cotugno [goodreads]


I experienced some debut authors' work that really impressed me this year and I definitely can't wait to read what they have next to write. Here are a few of my favorite debut author novels I read in 2016:

Summer of Supernovas by Darcy Woods [goodreads]
Suffer Love by Ashley Herring Blake [goodreads]


To wrap up this post I thought I'd feature my most recommended novels, because that's truly what I love most about reading and this book community. If romance is your thing, then I'm your girl. Below are stories I felt I recommended the most this year. If it's your first time stopping by then I hope this entire post has caused your TBR pile to grow tremendously! Enjoy!

Crash by Ruby McNally [goodreads]
In Her Defense by Julianna Keyes [goodreads]
Dark Wild Night by Christina Lauren [goodreads]


I'll be back after the New Year with some 2017 titles I am most looking forward to reading. Until then, enjoy these last few days of 2016 (I know, some are thinking -- good riddance 2016!). In the meantime, read something delicious and entertaining. Then tell me about it! Happy Holidays, friends.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: New-To-Me Authors I Read in 2016

I'm always discovering new-to-me authors it seems like, so this week's prompt could have been much longer than just ten. Some of my most favorite reads this year were from newbies. And you betcha I'll be back for more! Have you read anything by these authors? Let me know in the comments.

Jessica Love - IN REAL LIFE [add to goodreads]
Darcy Woods - SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS [add to goodreads]
Jennifer Mathieu - AFTERWARD [add to goodreads]
Julie Buxbaum - TELL ME THREE THINGS [add to goodreads]

Julianna Keyes - GOING TO THE DISTANCE [add to goodreads]
Sally Thorne - THE HATING GAME [add to goodreads]
Katherine Center - HAPPINESS FOR BEGINNERS [add to goodreads]

Laura Drewry - OFF THE HOOK [add to goodreads]
Ruby McNally - CRASH [add to goodreads]
Cara McKenna - HER BEST LAID PLANS [add to goodreads]

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