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Another New Life

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Miranda Preston is a walking contradiction. Talented, smart and beautiful on the outside and insecure, haunted and damaged on the inside. Despite these contradictions, she’s ready to start Another New Life.

When her talent wins her a piano performance scholarship to the University of Texas, Miranda arrives on campus determined to experience everything college has to offer and to keep her secrets in the past where they belong.

An easy task, until the first guy who catches her eye happens to be someone, she’s known all her life.

Eight years have passed since the last time Miranda and Troy saw each other. He reminds her of the best and worst times of her life, but she can’t think about one without dwelling on the other. As they grow closer, every day their attraction reminds them they are no longer kids.

The epic romantic love story that is Miranda and Troy seems to be destined for a happy ending, but Miranda knows it's only a matter of time before her secret is discovered. A secret that will not only destroy their relationship, it will destroy Troy, too.

Can Miranda focus on her future with Troy while preventing her past from tearing them apart all over again?

**This book contains adult subject matter. Not intended for young readers.**


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About the author

Sydney Aaliyah Michelle

41 books808 followers
Sydney Aaliyah Michelle is a Contemporary Romance writer, a voracious reader, tattoo lover, and movie fanatic who hails from Texas.

After surviving 5 1/2 years living in China, she had the courage to finally pursue her passion and become a writer.

She identifies the sci-fi action flick "The Matrix" as the best representation of her life in the past. She is now blessed to be awake and doing what she loves.

She can recite the entire script from the 80's teen comedy/drama "The Breakfast Club" and loves any and everything associated with the Avengers Movie, especially Tony Stark.

When it come to books, Sydney reads different genres, but some of her favorite writers are Stephen King, Alex J. Cavanaugh, J.A Huss, M. Never & Emily Bronte. Under the Dome, The Great Gatsby & Wuthering Heights are her favorite books.

Email Sydney at sydney@sydneyamichelle.com

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5 stars
51 (34%)
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53 (36%)
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27 (18%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 68 reviews
Profile Image for Michelle (In Libris Veritas).
1,982 reviews80 followers
June 7, 2014
Another New Life is a prime example of the type of New Adult books I just can’t get into, so please keep that in mind while reading this review. It isn’t my type of read and I found myself at odds with it overall.

Another New Life follows the story of Miranda, a college freshman who is looking forward to starting anew and moving away from her painful past. Here is where I had my first issue, what about her past is painful? It takes the story a while to get to this, and when you finally find out what happened and begin to understand what’s going on all of the sudden there is even more. I think I would have preferred that these revelations had happened a bit sooner in the book, maybe not to the other characters but at least so I felt somewhat in the loop. Because we found out the ‘big’ reason for everything later in the book it made me feel like some of the “results” were just plot devices meant to add depth to a shallow pool, when in fact they had relevance the entire time. I’m sort of at odds with how I feel because the revelations deal with some hard-hitting issues, but having them so out of place in the story made it lose some of it’s importance.

Miranda was an decent main character, who clearly has some issues that she’s ready to leave behind but she’s not adjusting well. In fact she has adjustment issues for the first few chapters, to the point where she will attempt to escape a classroom, but then becomes well adjusted in another chapter or so. It didn’t feel like a realistic time frame, or maybe it was her 180 attitude that made it weird. Troy I liked for the most part, up until the end at least. They sort of put each on a pedestal which is sort of irritating because it’s clear neither of them are perfect. I liked that they were childhood friends which add a bit of sweetness to the story and I liked how they both have to cope with how much they have changed, but it didn’t feel like enough to me. They were really young best friends, like elementary school young, and having them rely so much on that felt odd to me. Though it’s entirely possible I’m just a cynic and I’m not really the intended party (which I don’t think I am because plenty of people have enjoyed it). I also got a bit tired of all the kissing and sex, and that’s saying something.

Without spoiling anything I will talk about a few things that bothered me to the point of not enjoying this one. Once the big revelation is out Troy doesn’t handle it well…in fact he handles it so poorly that I wanted to punch him. Now that I think about it he doesn’t handle the first “revelation” very well either. He takes her problematic past and makes it his, instead of reassuring her or offering to be there for her he shut down completely. I get that people do this in real life, I do…but that doesn’t mean I like it. He also makes some comments that I would have a hard time accepting or letting slide. There were also comments made by her new best friend that I just want want to stuff back into her mouth, because it is not her place (best friend or not) to tell you anything about your sex-life uninvited.

So overall this just wasn’t a book for me. If you enjoy New Adult contemporaries that deal with a new college student dealing with their past and trying to move forward then I urge you to give it a shot. It’s another one of those personality clash type situations.
Profile Image for Tianna.
Author 1 book22 followers
June 10, 2014
For this book I'm liking...
Like Real People Do by Hozier


Alrighty, so I had the absolute pleasure of beta-reading Another New Life and I have to say I was so incredibly surprised by it! Those who know me, know I absolutely LOVE angst in my books. I NEED it. I thrive off it. So the subject matter touched on in this book completely drew me in right off the bat.

I was reading this story and racing to find out the secret and waiting to find out when everything was going to go south. It had me on the edge of my seat and I think I ripped through the book like race reader (is that even a thing?). Anyways, but what was so 'surprising' was just how incredibly real and touching and heart warming and infuriating these characters were. Usually these types of books have a specific recipe that they follow, but this one completely threw it out the window - and I LOVED IT!

This is the story of a girl haunted by her past and the journey of the boy who loved her. It was a story that had you pulling your hair because you couldn't help but think "This isn't how fictional Heroes' are supposed to act! The Heroine shouldn't be doing this! According to every other book out there this and this should be happening!" and yet it was. This story was gritty. It was messy. It was emotional and heartfelt. It pissed me off as much as it had me rooting for them. Syndey does an amazing job at creating characters who were flawed as much as they were good
Profile Image for Erica.
1,312 reviews30 followers
May 13, 2014
This book takes you on an emotional ride, which is just how I like my books!
The history that makes us who we are, how we handle the challenges were faced with and those who stand by us and help us through the tough times.

Another New Life is a very well written, emotional read. Miranda's pas is more tragic that you think, but once it all comes out you begin to understand her lifestyle choices up to this point.

5 stars without a doubt!
Profile Image for Katie Cross.
Author 77 books699 followers
May 28, 2014
This is my first true experience with the New Adult genre. I've flirted a bit with it but never actually read a book from it until now.

I'd actually say that the author has sparked a bit of an interest for me in looking at other titles in New Adult, which is a good sign that she did it right. So I'll try and gear my review towards a genre I'm not as familiar/versed with.

The characters came through strong and clear. What appealed to me the most was that they were both flawed and imperfect, and, pretty much, messed up. (Which is the strong appeal of New Adult, and I agree). TONS of character development through this story, both for the MC Miranda and her romantic interest, but mostly for Miranda. Darcy, the roommate, appealed to me right away, and I actually found myself falling more in love with her as a character as the book progressed. She was strong, but didn't overtake.

One of my only questions that I walked away from this book with was in regards to her parents. Without giving away any spoilers, I felt like the relationship there was somewhat unclear, like there was a slight discrepancy between what I expected and what was written. Miranda is quite distant and indifferent about her parents, and later when I met them, the father seemed much more caring than I thought, and the mother as well (to a point). Granted, that could be because what we learned of her parents came through Miranda's eyes when she was young, around 8.

The romance was sweet and fun. I think just about every girl that went to high school has lived out the 'crush on the quarterback and date him later' dream. Miranda fulfills that here, only in college, which makes the stakes higher and much more fun. That little aspect was probably the most drawing part of the story, and lended a great 'escapist' kind of feel.

At the end of the day, I stayed up until 1 in the morning reading, and picked it up the next morning to finish, reading it in less than one day. I plan on following this author to read more of her work.
Profile Image for Trina.
39 reviews1 follower
July 6, 2014
I received a copy in exchange for an honest review.

The title and synopsis drew me into this story and made me want to read it. I enjoy stories about characters trying to start over in life and when mystery is added that I am not able to figure out right away that makes it even better. Another New Life is the story of Miranda who is attending college at The University of Texas. She is smart and talented. Miranda feels most at ease when she is playing the piano. Since she is away from her family she sees this as an opportunity to put her past behind her and enjoy a new life. When she sees Troy her childhood friend that she has not see in eight years in one of her classes and begins spending time with him, she is torn between enjoying her time with him and reminders of her past that she believes she must keep secret especially from him.

I loved Troy and Miranda together. It was very sweet how even though they had been separated due to Miranda's family moving away that they never forgot one another. I enjoyed the moment where she recognized him and then he realized who she was. Darcy Miranda's roommate was a great addition to this story. I loved her honesty and the hilarious things that came out of her mouth. I am going to put it out there that it would be amazing if we could get more of Darcy's story.

I suspected what might have happened to Miranda, but I could not figure out why she did not want Troy to know. When all was revealed I was shocked and surprised. From there the story changed not in a bad way, but it became more about Miranda trying to heal instead of trying to forget. I will say that there were parts that were a bit difficult to read, but that helped you to understand what she went though as she relived what happened to her in order to address it. I appreciate that the author made this story in the end about confronting your past in order to truly address it and move forward.

I look forward to reading more from this author in the future.
August 6, 2015
4.5 Fantastic Stars!

This was a debut? Say what, say what?????? Full review to come :)


I went down 1/2 a star. Here's why...

Okay, so where do I begin with this one? I enjoyed this book, although looking back on it now, I don't quite remember why. I guess I could start by explaining my reading journey. I read this book when ALL NA books just seemed really good to me, although most of them explored the same topics and felt like a bunch of the same. But I found them to be enjoyable. Now, I've become bored with a lot of NA because it seems as if it's so much of the same.

With that said, the reason I liked this book before was because it had your typical NA themes, broken girl with dark past that she wanted to forget, uber-sexy athletic male interest, and unnecessary angst. This was a plot made in NA newbie heaven!

Here's the gist without being too spoilerish...

Miranda is broken((*gasps*))and only finds solace when she is playing piano. At school, she runs into her childhood friend Troy who's so sexy it hurts ((*gasps* again)). Troy wants to be more than friends with Miranda but she's resistant to his advances because of her painful past.

Here's what I liked:
Sydney's writing. This is her strong suit. I know grammar isn't a big deal for most NA readers, but it is for me. The fact that her work is mostly free of grammatical errors just does it for me. I also liked that she wasn't afraid to make her characters imperfect. Flaws, to me add depth, and even though you don't always like what the character does, you're left with enough interest to keep reading. This was a light read that was easy to follow.

What I didn't like:
Sometimes, the plot seemed too shallow, and was too angsty at times.

Overall, this is a solid read, particularly for NA newbies like I was at the time that I read this.

Profile Image for Eva.
32 reviews1 follower
August 24, 2014
I enjoyed this book from the beginning; the tension was obvious to me when Miranda took that first phone call from her parents that she needed to be away. Her starting school at UT was supposed to be a new beginning for her. She was leaving behind a past that was haunting her and had damaged her throughout her teenage years. She befriends her Southern belle roommate Darcy and a couple of other girls, and they have their own little circle.

It’s during her first day of Calculus that Miranda notices the ‘perfect guy’ walk into class. He was the star quarterback, but he looked familiar. It turned out that he was her best friend from when they were very young, Troy. After the initial shock of recognition, they meet-up after class for coffee and reminiscing.

They talk about how Miranda’s parents moved away eight years earlier and how upset they’d been. Now that they were both ‘grown’, there was an immediate attraction, and they began to date. Miranda stressed their new relationship constantly because she wasn’t ready to tell Troy some of the secrets of her past because she knew they would crush him. There were times when Miranda would zone out and Troy would sense that something was off and was completely understanding and didn’t push her at all.

I loved the fact that Miranda’s story comes out little by little throughout the book. There’s no info dump at the beginning that leaves me wondering, “What just happened?” I loved that Troy’s character remained, for the most part (no spoilers) a good guy who was looking out for the best interests of his once best friend and now ‘girlfriend’.

Aside from some minor grammatical errors (don’t go by me, I could have had an uncorrected proof), overall I definitely recommend this as a to be read.


Profile Image for Em The.
92 reviews10 followers
June 1, 2014
Tissues at the ready!

This has been one heck of an emotional roller-coaster of a read and I'm still reeling after finishing it yesterday! This is a beautiful love story that takes place eight years after the main characters, Miranda and Troy, were ripped apart by a heartbreaking situation. Childhood best friends who reunite and fall in love by chance when they attend college together are ripped apart again by a history that one is unaware of.

The emotions I have gone through when reading their beautiful story has had me in knots the entire way through this book and I will admit to have shed a lot of tears too! Some scenes in this story had my heart in my mouth and for anyone with a nervous disposition or anyone who may be sensitive to triggers for abuse, there are some pretty descriptive flashbacks in the book but please do not let this put you off!

Troy is a gorgeous character and at times you really feel for him and his conflicts and although his behaviour in one key situation had me totally reeling, you still cannot help but empathise with him in the end.

Miranda is also a refreshing female lead character and of the first time in a while she was a female lead that didn't annoy me at all. Yes, she has a secret and I firmly believe that she acts throughout the story as she believes she should. Without spoiling the story she realises she is different and never hides this fact. She isn't whiny, she doesn't run away from things every five minutes but she is also incapable of knowing how to deal with her history.

This is a truly amazing tale of self discovery and coming of age and I would highly recommend this but be warned a comfy cushion to hug and a box of tissues are needed before you start!
Profile Image for Jona Dauz.
63 reviews18 followers
June 22, 2014
First, thank you to Ms. Sydney Aaliyah Michelle for generously sharing her book in exchange for a review.

Another New Life is sweet, heart warming and with a bit of angst. It is a story of two best friends who’ve been separated when they were kids and reunited when they were in college. I always love stories about best friends ending up together. I love Troy & Miranda together. They made each other heal of the painful past they both had. I love Miranda’s strong personality and how she dealt of the f*cked up past she had and how she was able to come clean and move forward the right way. I also adore how Troy made Miranda feel so special. His actions are so romantic and so swoony!! I love the secondary characters as well.

I like how Ms. Michelle presented Troy & Miranda’s story. The emotions she evoked in me gave me goosebumps and skipped my heart beats. There were very minor clerical errors that can be completely overlooked. All in all it was a very good story of a love that surpasses all challenges and trials. Congratulations Ms. Michelle!!
Profile Image for Kelly Mccurdy.
852 reviews15 followers
May 25, 2014
~~I received this from the author in exchange for an honest review~~

This book had me laughing, crying, annoyed, amused and baffled. It definitely kept me interested. I couldn't put this book down. This is the first book that I have ready by Sydney, and it isn't going to be the last one. She touches on a subject that all to common in today's society. She shows the main character go through a tough time, and then she shows how she over comes what happened. Sydney also shows the downward spiral of the main characters boyfriend who is also her long lost best friend. There were many times that I had to reach for the tissues because I was sad at what happened. There were times that I was smiling from ear to ear because she is overcoming.

I can't say enough good things about this book. It is awesome! This is a book about finding out who you really are inside, instead of what the appearance is on the outside. You will love this book!
Profile Image for Sarah.
41 reviews13 followers
August 25, 2014
Another New Life handles some very serious issues well. Miranda isn't proud of her past and she hasn't fully dealt with everything that happened to her. But she's trying to move on. New college, new friends, new life...until she is reunited with her childhood friend, Troy. It's obvious these two have strong feelings for each other. The way Miranda and Troy fall in love is beautiful - everyone should fall in love with their best friend.

Miranda's past eventually catches up to her, and wrecks things with Troy. Troy doesn't handle things well, and both say things they don't mean. I was happy to see how the two worked through everything.

Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars. I read Another New Life in one sitting. It's a beautiful (and tragic) story and I was sad when it was over. I want to read more about Miranda and Troy and what their future holds.

To read my full review please visit LavenderGray Blog.
1 review
March 25, 2014
I received a free ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review:

Captivating! Blissfully romantic with a tasteful touch of lust and heartache.
Once I started, I didn't want to stop. At times, I found myself having to pry the book out of my hands in order to join the rest of the world. I instantly fell in love with Miranda and Troy and yearned for a relationship like theirs; full of laughter, infatuation, and witty banter. When they were faced with adversity, I rooted for them and their relationship so much that it hurt. I was on the edge of my seat throughout the entire second half of the book. Even when reading "The End" I didn't want it to stop. Another New Life is a great read that pushes the reader to experience multiple emotions that tear and rip at your heart, making you wish there was a sequel.
Profile Image for Lexi Wings.
84 reviews16 followers
December 22, 2014

At first glance, it's your typical New Adult story line, where the girl wants to forget her past, but as the story goes on. It becomes more intricate and mysterious, like "What is this girl running from? Whats is so bad that all she wants it's to cope and not live to the fullest?

Well, let me tell you the story itself is rich with details so heart breaking that makes you choke with pain for this girl. And most important you get to understand her. You realize that all connects and you keep reading, to make sure that the broken and battered girl, must triumph! And she does.

Miranda, breaks free from her past and accepts a love far from perfect, but enough for each other.

"We can't not be together."
"It wouldn't make sense. "

The story is a great emotional read, and a profession that love can indeed, heal.
Profile Image for Jenn Avery.
188 reviews3 followers
June 5, 2014
Another New Life was a great read. The author did a good job of pacing the story so that all the cards weren’t on the table up front, but as a reader it didn’t feel like things were intentionally held back, instead it feels like the natural progression of when the characters would be forced to confront the information they were trying to block.

Epic romance is a good term to describe the connection between Miranda and Troy. The connection never feels forced and is refreshingly shown and not just told.
There are parts of this book that are difficult to read, and may not be okay for readers with a history of abuse, but otherwise I’d recommend it for anyone who loves a good epic love story and stories about overcoming obstacles in the past and present to move on with your life.
July 9, 2014
I received this book for a honest review

I loved reading about Troy and Miranda and the fact that they were best friends a long time ago and they never really got over that. The things that happened to Miranda is something that I don't wish on anyone and I love when a story talks about things that really happen in everyday life. The fact that Miranda had to suffer through it alone and really never had no one to talk to was sad but in the end things worked out just fine and the way that they were suppose to. Troy was the guy that had it all except he never really understood what happen to his best friend and than they reconnect in college and than everything is like no time had ever passed between them. This book kept me caught up from beginning to end and I hated to see it end.
Profile Image for Stephanie Gresham.
Author 5 books95 followers
May 17, 2014
I received this for an honest review.

At first, I had a little trouble connecting with Miranda, but I did warm up to her. Miranda had a tragic incident happen to her as a child that shaped her teenage years. She moved away to college, far from home, to reinvent herself. After seeing her best friend from childhood she starts to open up more and you can connect with her better. I eventually fell in love with her and Troy. Darcy is a hoot too! I loved how this author was able to write about this type of situation. It does not end in a cliff hanger, but the ending does leave it wide open for a follow-up!
Profile Image for Michie Scott.
64 reviews
May 28, 2014
This is a quick read, great story line,beautiful heroine. I like Miranda's character, she is so smart,witty and very talented person, while Troy, though he is so popular he is very honest and loyal to Miranda. I love how the author described the heroine's feeling for each other. This story makes me cry also, the story was very light but it really touches my heart.

There's a moral lesson on the story on how to deal with our past so that we can move on and have a new life.

Kudos to the author, I will strongly recommend this book to all book lovers out there,it's worth reading promise.
Profile Image for Jelena.
13 reviews2 followers
August 3, 2016
I received this from the author in exchange for an honest review

5 music stars

Miranda Preston (18 yrs) just moved from Seattle to the University of Texas on a piano scholarship. In her first week she meet Troy (19 yrs) her best friend from childhood. After some time they become couple. Everything is fine except Miranda's secret... Will she be able to start New life after all...

Realistic emotional, the characters and story are carefully crafted. Great read, well written, I like it.
Profile Image for Anna.
948 reviews12 followers
May 9, 2014
I received an ARC of this book (let's hope I read it before an editor...too many typos!). I applaud the author for tackling such a serious subject matter so well. These two best friends reunited in college did an amazing job of dealing with one another as they coped with their past. This was a very well documented journey. I wasn't wild about the ending. It was an extremely well written last page, but maybe an epilogue or let's get Darcy's story so we can catch up with Troy and Miranda.
54 reviews11 followers
June 8, 2014
Well written and beautiful!

Well written and beautiful!

What a beautifully written story! Handles the delicate issues of childhood abuse (with compassion) and finding lost love and healing. I truly enjoyed this book, I can't wait for more from this newly published, gifted Author!
Profile Image for Amy.
8 reviews1 follower
July 10, 2014
I really enjoyed this book. The characters were great and I liked how things unfolded for them. The reason I didn't give this book a higher rating is that I found many editorial errors throughout, including in the first sentence which probably made them jump out at me more than they might otherwise.
Overall, I enjoyed the story very much and liked how it ended.
Profile Image for Becky.
81 reviews
September 6, 2014
This was a great story. It sadly hit close to home and I felt every emotion while reading this story. Sydney did a great job with the characters and how everything progressed. I loved how Miranda worked through her issues. I was sad for the story to end, it ended great but I was sad to see them go. So I am glad Sydney has a new book coming out for me to read.
Profile Image for P.K. Hrezo.
Author 14 books126 followers
March 25, 2014
A realistic and raw New Adult story that keeps you turning pages. I totally bonded with Miranda and loved how she was honest, smart, and down to earth. I think a lot of readers will identify with her and her journey, and cheer for her til the very end.
Profile Image for Emmy.
912 reviews8 followers
April 10, 2017
I get that books should be an escape, but give me something tangible. Or real. At least a non-moronic, likeable main character...? Is this too much to ask for?
931 reviews2 followers
December 14, 2017
ItIGreat Book

This was a great book.The story itself was wonderful.The twist about the story was surprising.So full of different emotions.Makes you wonder how this is true to life & how you would handle it.
Profile Image for Dorel.
3,861 reviews34 followers
July 21, 2017
This is the 1st book I read by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle. I'm sorry this book was so boring. I only finished chapter 1.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 68 reviews

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