What happens when a somebody suddenly pays attention to a nobody like you?
In a small town of Stillburrow, every knows everyone - thei...moreWhat happens when a somebody suddenly pays attention to a nobody like you?
In a small town of Stillburrow, every knows everyone - their family history, who goes out with whom, who owes whom what. Everything is so transparent that no secrets can be kept forever.
Carrie Paxton is clearly not the most popular girl in school. But when she was assigned to interview Lucas Carter, the famous quarterback, she knew just by looking in those crazy blue eyes of his that she was in trouble.
Luke (because he prefers to be called by it rather than Lucas) is the school football newest star and the son of the town banker. He too has some secrets that he didn't want anybody else to know, his parents may not approve of it as well as other people. (is he gay?!). Guess you are about to find out.
Secrets are spilled, and Carrie found herself in trouble without doing anything at all. Luke did something that she didn't expect. Matty was in deep trouble, and her mother is barely holding on. Can a relationship that has barely even started, more so official, survive all these hullabaloo?
I like Linda Kage's novels. I find The Stillburrow Crush cute. It's a clean YA, but can still entertains those who are way over their teens like me. (less)
Shrinking Violet had me just looking at the book cover – as the old adage goes: do not judge the book by its cover. But trust me, the story is just as...moreShrinking Violet had me just looking at the book cover – as the old adage goes: do not judge the book by its cover. But trust me, the story is just as good as its façade.
There are the characters. Teresa Adams or Tere is painfully shy. Of course, we have encountered such people in high school (or even in the universities). Her shyness is almost weird and people in her class or in school would just assume that either she’s mute or won’t speak at all. The only time she’s practicing her speech skills is inside the comforts of her room – alone, playing-DJ to the music in her Ipod playlist. She has the knack and passion for music. She’s one of those characters who deserved a happy ending.
Her mother – is really overbearing. I really hated her in the beginning because: aren’t moms supposed to love their child despite of anything? I wanted her to support whatever Tere wanted, but she doesn’t seem to believe in Tere’s capability. However, in the end, she redeemed herself (although people really can’t change 180 in a blink of an eye) – which makes her mom seems to be more real.
Her stepdad, whom I adore. Although I really didn’t appreciate the entire PDA in the midst of children (anyone below 18). Nevertheless, he believed in Tere compared to her mom and gave her the opportunity to finally make her dreams come true. He owns the radio station where he let Tere worked as a DJ.
There’s Gavin who’s also an interesting character with his Goth look and penchant for music.
The Plot. I love how the characters developed, especially Tere. How her character actually bloomed and changed all throughout the book. Her change didn’t happen in a day, which I really appreciated. It was a step-by-step process which finally culminated on prom night. Although the plot was predictable (which is why I have given it a 4 instead of 5), still it the story was still pretty amazing. Tere and Gavin’s relationship was nicely written – it ended as what I have expected but it didn’t really matter because their story was not rushed, and gradually fell in to place.
For a first novel, Danielle Joseph made an amazing sweet and short read. Shrinking Violet may have a predictable plot – but the words, the scenes, the characters will keep you on the hook. The author makes sure that everything is flawlessly real and the readers can very much relate to. The gradual transformation of Tere from someone who’s really shy to a lady with confidence is really heartwarming. (less)
While He Was Away had me at its blurb. I wanted to see how the author will make out of this supposedly long-distance relationship between t...moreRating: 4/5
While He Was Away had me at its blurb. I wanted to see how the author will make out of this supposedly long-distance relationship between two young people who shared an intense love and are about to part ways because of the war.
David and Penna were so much in love with each other. It all started when the both of them knew they share the same passion for art. Penna is a quiet 18-year old and the only child of a single-parent mom whom she shared a somewhat edgy and strained relationship with. But their all-consuming love and devotion to one another is put to test when David is called to Iraq for a year of military service.
There are a lot of things I like about this book, despite the fact that I thought this was a cover-to-cover love story. First, is the change in the character – especially with Penna. How readers see her maturity grows everyday and how she tries and finally learn to live her life with David away from her. While He Was Away also depicts reality – that lovers really don’t live inside a fairytale. The real world is tough and heavy with problems. A lot of couples, especially military girlfriends and wives have gone through and survived it. But you can’t help to root for them, I wanted them to be together badly, I feel that they long for each other every time they have the chance to talk. That’s why the ending surprised me.
Another thing I like about this book, is that this is more than just Penna and David’s love story. It is covered with a lot of twists and turns in its subplot that will make you read it until the every last page.
While He Was Away perfectly depicts the strain of the wait, as well as the changes and shifts in the relationships in complex way. There is no fairytale happily-ever-after to finish up the open-ended conclusion of While He Was Away. But the main character Penna, showed an amazing growth of character which is truly inspirational.
I sincerely hope that Penna and David will have their happy ending (either together or with another person). Yes, I’d love to read a sequel! (less)
Shawn Underhill is a master storyteller. I love the way he wrote the whole novel - the descriptions are vivid an...more"Your heart aches because it's good."
Shawn Underhill is a master storyteller. I love the way he wrote the whole novel - the descriptions are vivid and you can just put yourself in the pages - feeling all those emotions and being in the places inside the book. The pacing is just enough to allow readers to sit back and watch not just the development of each characters, but watching relationship flourish as well.
Jake is a likable character. A typical boy who didn't want girls around - especially when he had been living alone with his father for a couple of years. He's responsible, and has a good head on his shoulders. If there is one word that best describe him, it would be: pragmatic. I like how is character matured through the pages, although I wasn't sure when was the time that he really fell in love with Sara. It's almost like being a couple is already given since they were already friends. I think a little bit of sweet words, romantic gestures wouldn't hurt.
Sara has some heavy baggage to carry, but I love her resilience. The sudden change in her moods is understandable after what she's been through, but despite of it - she decides to live life and find something to be happy about. She found a home with Jake and his father. At a young age, she gave them a home which I greatly admire. I find her very sweet, and thoughtful. She's very persuasive and watching her make Jake putty in her hands is also entertaining.
Jake's Dad is the best father in the world! Just like an ordinary father, he is not vocal with his feelings, but he shows that he cares not only to Jake but to Sara and her mother as well. He's very helpful and generous to people who needs him the most. He is also hardworking, but he always makes sure he has time for Jake.
Finally, after a while - I had the time to read this book on my Kindle. It took me long but it was totally worth it. The whole story is in crescendo and ended in a beautiful finale that left me teary-eyed and satisfied. It may not end the way I wanted it to be, but it is just amazing as it is.
Disclaimer: Book reviewed was sent to me by the author and I have received no compensation of any kind for the review whether it is positive.(less)
I already came across Piper Shelly’s Play with Me early this year. I already loved it because amidst all t...morePosted atBook Freak as part of the Blog Tour
I already came across Piper Shelly’s Play with Me early this year. I already loved it because amidst all the emotionally gripping novels saved in my e-Readers, here comes a novel that would just make you smile, swoon a little bit and reminded you of those times when you had your first crush or first love in your teens. I enjoyed reading Liza’s POV in Play with Me. But reading Ryan Hunter with his own POV – definitely SWOON!!! Who doesn’t love going inside a boy’s brain and knowing what’s running inside it? I know I would!
Wait, whine, beg on my knees- Liza could have all of that from me. She only had to snap her fingers.
Ryan Hunter had been in love with Liza for a while now – and when I say a while – meaning a long time. But Liza had already set her eyes on her best friend Tony. However, Tony has set his sights on another girl. He asked Ryan’s help to distract Liza – a change he’ll be too dumb to pass.
So, while Tony is busy with another girl, Ryan Hunter is slowly making his way to Liza’s senses and heart. Everything was perfect and going smoothly until Tony changed his mind.
For a minute there, I thought I stood a chance. But I guess in the end, Mitchell will still be the lucky one.
Beneath the “cool dude” exterior, Ryan Hunter is a sweet boy who loves his family, a great friend and has a passion for soccer. He also plays it safe when it comes to the matters of the heart. He didn’t take a risk with Liza for the longest time he was in love with her until Tony gave him the ‘go-signal’ (or sort of). And when he finally made his move - I really understood Liza when she finally questioned her feelings for Tony. I just wished Ryan was more forward for his feelings and fought for Liza more rather than feeling sorry for himself. But, it didn’t make me love him less. Because despite his imperfections, I’d chose Ryan Hunter over Anthony Mitchell anytime.
Some says it’s inevitable to fall in love with your best friend. Especially when you spend your whole life with him or her and you couldn’t imagine spending it with someone else. Why find someone else when you have already the best at your side? Now the question is – does the best friend felt the same? What if the emotion is unrequited? On the other hand, for the person who goes in between these two friends, competing for the attention, the time and the life-long friendship can be a lot of hard work. But when you want to be with that person, you can get through it no matter what the circumstances are.
Ryan Hunter is the second installment in Piper Shelly’s Grover Beach Team Series and just like the first one, I’m sure you will enjoy reading it. It’s amazing without really breaking your heart, it’s wonderful without needing a Kleenex beside you. Some books can indeed be wonderful without making a mess of your make up. It’s a short sweet read, and easy on the heart. I’d recommend it to friends who wants to read something light, or for those people who simply wants to fall in love.
Wrapping up: If you’re asking me what do I love best? I love both books - they share different POVS, and I get to see the different side of the story. :) These two - they show a writer can wow a reader without making him/her cry. I heart you Ryan Hunter! :)(less)
This is one of those few short, sweet reads that features a less complicated, non-scarred characters. It's a complete breather in between recent release new adults. Totally feel-good novel that will have you smiling and swooning all throughout your read.
After being dumped and made-a-fool-at by his ex-girlfriend Lana - Kyle B. was lost. He's looking for someone nice, someone who will really love him, and someone who would accept him for who he is. He didn't know it would be that hard to find a girl like that. His friend, Emma offers help to make him a boyfriend material, in return he sets her up with a good guy with ambition. But what he didn't expect is too suddenly see her in a different light. If he could only be the guy that she wants.
Being strong was hard work, and I was ready to let someone else be strong for a little bit. Not forever, but for a little while.
Emma has been through the worse, and she'll do anything not to go back to it. She thought she wanted a guy who has a direction in life, someone clean, someone who has ambition - never did she expect that she'll fell for the opposite. But she too has her own secrets she wasn't ready to tell anyone.
Sometimes when you think you need space to sort out how you feel, you really don't. You're just scared, so you ran. Running is never the answer. Make yourself stay and work through it.
I like that they started as friends - until they grew on each other. Indeed, the best relationship starts with friendship. They're witty conversations were very entertaining, especially the first part. I find his experience hilarious - well, everyone gets to have their firsts something (don't blame him coming there - it was totally out of desperation!). The Unofficial Story of Kyle B. Johnson is a story of friendship, self-discovery, and finding love. Sometimes, we seek far only to find that the one for us is just right under our noses.
*ARC Copy was given in exchange for an honest review.(less)