Summer of Supernovas – Darcy Woods

Summer of Supernovas – Darcy WoodsTitle: Summer of Supernovas by Darcy Woods
Publishing Info: May 10, 2016 by Random House Publishing Group
Source: Publisher
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: May 16, 2016

When zodiac-obsessed teen Wilamena Carlisle discovers a planetary alignment that won’t repeat for a decade, she’s forced to tackle her greatest astrological fear: The Fifth House—relationships and love.
But when Wil falls for a sensitive guitar player hailing from the wrong side of the astrology chart, she must decide whether a cosmically doomed love is worth rejecting her dead mother’s legacy and the very system she’s faithfully followed through a lifetime of unfailing belief.

bookreview1

SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS sounded really cute and like the perfect light, summery read! I thought the astrology angle sounded very fun so I was excited to start when I received a copy for review from Penguin Random House! Checking out the ratings on Goodreads after finishing, it looks like I’m the total black sheep here. The book has a 4.16 rating (as of the day that I’m writing my review) which is pretty dang good and something I often look at before picking up a book… So I think I sadly just didn’t quite mesh with SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS from the start!

I’m all for meet-cute moments and SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS had quite a moment of its own to kick off the book! Maybe it was just my mood but the whole first chapter felt quite overdone and really just over the top for me. I’m not averse to things getting a little silly but when instance upon instance is piled one on top of the other, they start to lose their humor and just start to get cheesy. I really couldn’t get over how many “sillly” moments there were in the first chapter alone and the whole thing just really wasn’t working out for me. A misunderstanding, a near-death (or maybe just near-serious injury) experience, an accidental flashing, AND the meet cute with the boy-with-the-wrong-sign all in the first chapter was just too much all at once.

Then there were the things that flat out turned me off, which sadly were a few within the first few chapters. The entire premise of the book is based off of the fact that Wil puts a ton of faith in her astrology charts. According to the latest, she needs to find her true love this year, otherwise she’ll be off-sync with the dating world for another ten years, a which time in her words she will be an spinster at twenty-seven with ten cats. I realize that maybe for some teens, 27 is a long way away and many people may not want to be single well into their 20s, but I really didn’t appreciate the message that it’s not okay to be single at 27-years-old and that those who are have something wrong with them. I really didn’t like that this was the entire concept of the book and the reason why Wil is pressing to find herself a match in this immediate moment.

I also had issues with the way the characters talked about each other. I’m all for owning your sexuality but when Wil shows up to an event trying to play down some of her curves with a blouse and pencil skirt, a guy makes a comment about her figure calling her a sexy school teacher and actually refers to her breasts as apples. It just felt all wrong and something that really wasn’t appropriate for a young adult audience. I’m not saying that teenagers don’t say things like that but it felt like she was being a bit objectified and since I’m not someone who usually takes offense to these kinds of things when I’m reading, it really threw up a red flag for me that I found this so off-putting.

Lastly, the love triangle was just not working out for me either. I know people have some very strong opinions about love triangles but if they’re done well, they do often feel realistic and they really don’t bother me. When they’re not done well, it’s instantly frustrating. I actually ended up getting confused between the two guys at first because I felt like they were so similar for some reason and then we find out… they’re brothers. Sigh. Like I said, I don’t mind love triangles but the choosing-between-two-brothers triangle seems about as tropey as you can get and this just felt forced.

Sadly, I really struggled with SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS. I just didn’t jive with the writing overall and there were so many situations that felt much more dramatic than they needed to be. Once I started off on a bad foot, the rest of the book kind of slowly kept spiraling in the same direction and there wasn’t much to really pull myself out of that funk. There were a lot of things that seemed to be in the story for the sake of the story but didn’t quite flow naturally and I never found my rhythm with this book. Lots of friends have enjoyed it for it’s cutesy quality and just a light and fun read but this one just didn’t work out for me.

character_breakdown1

Wil // Character Obsessions: Astrology, family, finding her perfect match.
Wil, Wil, Wil. She was just too much for me. I felt uncomfortable that her life was so dependent on astrology and she really let it dictate what she did. On the one hand, she was kind of a free spirit and didn’t care what people thought of her but on the other hand, her obsession with astrology drove her decisions and she really didn’t think for herself in a lot of ways. It was a cute concept but taken a bit too far, I think.

addiction_factor1

Kept Me Hooked On: Fun hooks. The astrology hook really did bring me into this book! I wished it hadn’t “controlled” Wil’s life so much because if it had been more of a hook than an entire plot point, it would have been a lot less dramatic and much cuter.
Left Me Wanting More: Reality. This book was quite dramatic and it was too over the top in many ways. It just left things feeling unrealstic and went past cute and into cheesy for me.

Addiction Rating
Skip it

Normally when other friends enjoy a book so much and I don’t, I will recommend to try it but so many things turned me off about this one that I can’t really recommend it. Check out reviews and see what your friends say but this one is a pass for me.

book_recommendations1

BOOKS LIKE SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS

(Click the cover to see my review!)

THE F-IT LIST    A LITTLE SOMETHING DIFFERENT

Book and a Beverage [147] – Bex from An Armchair by the Sea

Book and a Beverage

Welcome back to BOOK AND A BEVERAGE!

In case you don’t know the deal about Book and a Beverage, it’s a very simple yet fun feature: We read books, we drink beverages, we take pictures of them and then I share your photos and a little about you to the blogging world!

Give a big welcome to Bex from An Armchair by the Sea!

bookandbeverage

1

Name & Blog Name: Bex – An Armchair by the Sea
Tell us a little about your blog! I started my blog five years ago when I moved away from my family with my fiance and needed something to do! It started as a way to keep track of what I was reading but has become much more than that, providing the jumping off point for several other projects including the Ninja Book Swap and the making of many friendships!
What’s been your favorite post you’ve written so far? (Link us up!) I think my post Ninja Book Swap and Me , about my feelings about running my book swap and how difficult and awesome it can be!
Got anything special coming up we should know about? Sign up for the summer mini book swap opens on Saturday!

book

Whatcha reading? Garden Spells by Sarah Addison
Where did it come from? (Library, purchased, publisher, etc): Originally the library but I loved it so much I bought myself a copy!
Any special reason you chose to feature this book? It’s just so lovely – it’s got magic, romance and recipes! What more could you want?
What’s important that we should know about this book? Would you recommend it? It’s just a lovely, quirky story about a couple of sisters who are a little lost in their lives re-rooting themselves through their love of food and discovering their family’s heritage.

beverage

Whatcha drinking? Tea, always.
What’s your favorite thing to drink while reading? Generally water or tea.
Favorite beverage of all time. Go! I have a really big thing for milkshakes. Particularly oreo ones.

bonus

What are your top three books you would recommend to other people? The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell and Wild by Cheryl Strayed
What’s your proudest blogging/reading/writing moment? When I was quoted on the inside of Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness. The quote was kind of lame, but I’m still super excited about it! Oh, and also when I organised 30 bloggers and booklovers to go on a bookshop crawl in London in February of this year through the power of twitter and my blog. It was awesome.


 Thanks so much, Bex! Mmm oreo milkshakes! I could totally go for one right now. LOVE your recs of Night Circus and Eleanor & Park! Fantastic books. 

I hope you enjoyed getting to know Bex! Connect with her at the links below!
Blog // Twitter // Facebook // Instagram


And don’t forget! You can participate in Book and a Beverage at any time! Got a book? Got a beverage? Just tweet or post your photo on Instagram using the hashtag #bookandabeverage!#bookandabeverage

Blog Tour: Julia Vanishes by Catherine Egan | Giveaway

Welcome to the blog tour for
JULIA VANISHES by Catherine Egan

Today I’m sharing my blog post for JULIA VANISHES by Catherine Egan as a part of the blog tour! Big thanks to Random House for having me be a part of the tour for this unique book! Today I’ve got a little bit of info about the book and a giveaway!!

Before we jump into the tour, let’s take a second to check out some details about the book:

Blog Tour: Julia Vanishes by Catherine Egan | GiveawayTitle: Julia Vanishes (Witch's Child #1) by Catherine Egan
Publishing Info: June 7, 2016 by HarperCollins
Source: Publisher
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: April 12, 2016

Julia has the unusual ability to be…unseen. Not invisible, exactly. Just beyond most people’s senses.
It’s a dangerous trait in a city that has banned all forms of magic and drowns witches in public Cleansings. But it’s a useful trait for a thief and a spy. And Julia has learned—crime pays.
Her latest job is paying very well indeed. Julia is posing as a housemaid in the grand house of Mrs. Och, where an odd assortment of characters live and work: A disgraced professor who sends her to fetch parcels containing bullets, spiders, and poison. An aristocratic houseguest who is locked in the basement each night. And a mysterious young woman who is clearly in hiding—though from what or whom?
Worse, Julia suspects that there’s a connection between these people and the killer leaving a trail of bodies across the frozen city.
The more she learns, the more she wants to be done with this unnatural job. To go back to the safety of her friends and fellow thieves. But Julia is entangled in a struggle between forces more powerful than she’d ever imagined. Escape will come at a terrible price.

ABOUT CATHERINE EGAN

Catherine Egan author photo-2CATHERINE EGAN grew up in Vancouver, Canada. Since then, she has lived on a volcanic island in Japan (which erupted while she was there and sent her hurtling straight into the arms of her now-husband), in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Beijing, on an oil rig in the middle of Bohai Bay, then in New Jersey, and now in New Haven, Connecticut. She is currently occupied with writing books and fighting dragon armies with her warrior children. You can read more about her at catherineegan.com. Follow her on Twitter at @ByCatherineEgan.

Don’t miss the rest of the JULIA VANISHES blog tour stops!

GIVEAWAY

One lucky winner will receive a copy of JULIA VANISHES by Catherine Egan! Enter through the Rafflecopter form below and good luck!! US entries only!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

BEA 2016 Recap!

Book Expo America 2016 was in Chicago this year so it was a given that I’d attend! My other halves (other thirds?), Alyssa from Books Take You Places and Amy from Tripping Over Books, came out to Chicago and we all headed out to BEA together on Tuesday afternoon! The trip was excellent, as always, and it was so amazing to spend time with all of the wonderful bookish people I’ve come to know throughout the years!

TUESDAY, MAY 10TH

Tuesday we headed into the city and met up with some fellow bloggers to go see The Bean (official name: Cloud Gate) in Millennium Park! I’ve visited a few times being a Chicago suburbanite but it was so much fun to see everyone experience it for the first time and it’s always fun to feel free to be touristy, even when it’s a city I know well! We took some requisite Bean selfies and other photos before we headed off to dinner for some deep dish pizza! Lou Malnati’s is my favorite place to grab deep dish and I’m never, ever disappointed. The pizza was delicious and the company was wonderful!

WEDNESDAY, MAY 11TH

Due to a family emergency, I got to the floor late on Wednesday so I really didn’t pick up too many books! I did end up getting REPLICA by Lauren Oliver which was something I really wanted to snag. The story has two different narrators but the two sides can either be read entirely one and then the other or alternating. I did get a copy of REPLICA from Edelweiss but if I’m going to read it in alternating POVs, that really doesn’t work reading it on my Kindle! I haven’t decided how I’m going to do it yet but I can’t wait to read this one!

After the conference, we headed out to dinner at Carnivale with a group of blogger besties! We were looking for something unique with a fun atmosphere and Carnivale was a delight! It wasn’t crowded since we came on a Wednesday and it looks like they get into some pretty cool shows on the weekends, complete with aerial performances! I got jerk ribs (I love ribs) and they were so good! We split a chocolate cigar for dessert and it actually looked like cigar. The service was great, atmosphere was fun, and company was top notch!

THURSDAY, MAY 12TH

Thursday was the busiest day! We spent a bunch of time trying to grab our most-coveted ARCs and were able to see so many amazing authors! I haven’t read the Miss Peregrine series yet (I am starting it soon!) but we met Ransom Riggs and got a chapter sampler signed for his upcoming release Tales of the Peculiar. I got to say hello again to Gayle Forman and get an ARC of her adult novel, Leave Me! I absolutely love Gayle and all of her young adult books so although I don’t really read adult contemporary, I can’t wait to see what this book has in store for readers! I met Jennifer Niven and received a copy of her upcoming release, Holding up the Universe, as well as Adam Gidwitz for his latest MG novel. I was able to pick up a bunch of ARCs I’ve been looking forward to from the NOVL, a cute contemporary from HarperTeen, and the first in a new series called Stalking Jack the Ripper!

Thursday night held some publisher parties for us! I met up with the Bloomsbury team and some of their authors for food and drinks! It was great to see Lizzy, Erica, and the rest of the Bloomsbury ladies in attendance! I also got to meet Elizabeth Eulberg who is so sweet as well as author Danielle Paige. Jeff Giles wasn’t able to make it to the party due to a flight delay but I did get to meet him the next day! It was the first time I had seen my blurb in the ARC of The Edge of Everything so that was SUCH a cool experience!!

The Edge of Everything Jeff Giles The Book Addict's Guide

After Bloomsbury we conveniently walked two blocks to the Macmillan/Fierce Reads party at Berghoff! It was such a delight to hang out with more blogger friends and I was overjoyed to be able to really spend some time with Marissa Meyer! We chatted for a bit with Mary from Macmillan and a gentleman who I later found out is the president of Macmillan! (I hope I didn’t say anything TOO embarrassing in front of him. We were all talking about truth or dare so…) I got to say hello to the lovely and fierce Leigh Bardugo and meet Caleb Roehrig who has a debut coming out in the fall! The party was great and I’m so glad I was able to attend, especially since I missed it last year!!

Leigh Barudgo Macmillan B & Marissa

FRIDAY, MAY 13TH

Friday was all about obtaining an ARC of Gemina!! Penguin Random House didn’t really do ANY drops at all except for the one that was scheduled on Friday at 3:30pm so we meandered around the floor for most of the day, meeting a few authors and grabbing a few books, but we made sure to SET UP for Gemina! In the meantime, we happened to somehow stumble into Laini Taylor’s signing and there was mysteriously (miraculously?) NO LINE. We just walked right up and got to meet her! As usual I was quite flabbergasted and made an idiot of myself in front of a huge author but she was very sweet and I’m so excited I got to meet her because she was one of the author’s I’ve wanted to meet but she hadn’t come to town yet!

It was finally Gemina time and we almost didn’t even know it! Around 1pm, we ran out of places we really wanted to be so we figured why not go line up early for the ARC drop? It was a good thing we headed over there because there was already a line forming!! There had to have been hundreds and hundreds of people by the time it was time for the drop. Yes, we waited two and a half hours to grab this book! We are that excited for it. We heard that Jay Kristoff was walking around and if you gave him a secret keyword, he had ARCs of his latest solo release Nevernight! Girls literally went RUNNING. I want that book so badly and Kristina from Gone Pecan got one! He had limited ARCs since they were just in his messenger bag so we are convincing her to share ;D But really it was just super neat to meet him and he was so tickled with how many people were in line for Gemina!

All was well, we easily made it within the number range to grab Gemina (I think most people did!) and that was it for BEA 2016!

See my full photo album from the trip on my blog’s Facebook page!

Did you go to BEA this year? What was your favorite part of the conference? If you didn’t go to BEA, what are some books that were there that you’re dying to read!?

Looking for more BEA news? You can check out my recaps from previous years I attended!
BEA 2013 | BEA 2014 | BEA 2015

Blog Tour: Spark by Holly Schindler | Author Interview

Blog Tour: Spark by Holly Schindler | Author Interview

Welcome to the blog tour for
SPARK by Holly Schindler

Today I’m sharing my blog post for SPARK by Holly Schindler as a part of the blog tour! Thanks to Harper Teen and Hannah from Irish Banana Blog Tours for having me be a part of this one! I’m really excited to share a Q&A session with author Holly Schindler!

Before we jump into the tour, let’s take a second to check out some details about the book:

Blog Tour: Spark by Holly Schindler | Author InterviewTitle: Spark by Holly Schindler
Publishing Info: May 17, 2016 by HarperCollins
Source: Publisher
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: March 18, 2016

The local Avery Theater was just a run-down building to Quin—until her mother told her the tragic love story of Nick and Emma that played out on the theater’s stage all those years ago. Quin is convinced it’s the perfect story to rewrite for her drama class, but when she goes searching for more information, she makes a startling discovery—the Avery is rapidly regaining its former splendor and setting the stage for her classmates Dylan and Cass to relive Nick and Emma’s romance. Quin can see the spark between them, but it’s up to her to make sure her friends—and the Avery—can both be saved this time around.


LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Indiebound | iBooks | The Book Depository

ABOUT HOLLY SCHINDLER

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Holly Schindler’s work has received starred reviews in Booklist and Publishers Weekly, has won silver and gold medals in ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year and the IPPY Awards, respectively, has been featured on Booklist’s Best First Novels for Youth and School Library Journal’s What’s Hot in YA, and has been a PW Pick of the Week. She is owned by a Pekingese named Jake, and can be found working on her next book in her hometown of Springfield, Missouri. She can also be found at hollyschindler.com.

LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: HOLLY SCHINDLER

The Avery theater is like a character itself, playing a huge role in Verona’s past and also turns out to be an important part of its present/future. Was it difficult to bring a place to life like that?

Just the opposite—it was a delight! I really love books or TV series or movies in which settings or buildings are characters. Love the idea of a place being alive. So many places in our own lives feel that way—maybe because of what we bring to them. I also just love the phrase “the magic of the theater.” Nothing feels more alive or vibrant than a theater. I was so excited to finally come upon a storyline of my own in which I could create a physical place that functioned as a main character.

The book starts off with a quote from As You Like It and there also seems to be a nod to Shakespeare by naming the town Verona.  Would you say that Shakespeare was a big influence or inspiration for SPARK?

Absolutely! You can’t do a piece on the theater without being influenced by or referencing Shakespeare. There’s also an obvious ROMEO AND JULIET element, with the idea of star-crossed lovers. I loved the idea of “uncrossing” star-crossed lovers—being able to save the fated couple. I got to do that in SPARK.

I always love hearing how authors get that spark (*wink*) of inspiration for their books! Was there any specific incident or moment that popped in your head that led you to SPARK’s inception?

This one came in waves. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to focus on two flawed people that weren’t flawed in each other’s eyes (Cass and Dylan). And where do two people transform themselves more powerfully than on the stage of a theater? That was really the initial piece. The rest began to filter itself in along the way.

I thought it was neat how Quin, the main character, is actually not involved in the main romance and the “spark” is between her two classmates, Cass and Dylan. Was this always how Quin’s story was planned to go?

Actually, Quin was a later addition. Initially, I tried to write the romance between Cass and Dylan, told from their points of view. Previously, I’d written a YA love story (PLAYING HURT) that followed that format. But this time, it wasn’t working. I needed a narrator—but I knew it couldn’t be an authorial voice. I needed someone involved with these characters. So my writer (and my protagonist), Quin, was born.

The theater seems to be more prevalent in pop culture nowadays with huge fan bases in shows like Hamilton, Wicked, and so many other plays/musicals being adapted to the big screen. Do you feel like theater might be making a resurgence?

I hope so! There are so many powerful stories that take place on the stage. SPARK was written before HAMILTON exploded—but I really do hope young people are coming to the theater in a new way.

Do you have a favorite theatrical production? Has it influenced any of your books?

I’m an old literature major—and as I said, you can definitely see the influences of Shakespeare in SPARK. I also reference a few musicals in the book like THE FANTASTICKS. I grew up going to Tent Theater (the drama department at MSU puts on productions all summer long underneath a tent on campus)—I saw everything from BELLS ARE RINGING to BAREFOOT IN THE PARK. I also got to catch all sorts of touring theatrical productions—LES MISERABLES, CATS…I think that often, the theater seems somewhat out of reach—it can be pricey if you live in NY, and it can seem like something that only takes place hundreds of miles away if you live in the Midwest. I hope SPARK inspires some teens to go to the theater if they never have before—see a production playing in their hometown, enter the Hamilton lottery. It truly is a magical experience…

Thanks so much to Holly Schindler for this great interview!! 

Holly Schindler Bio: I’m a hybrid author of critically acclaimed traditionally published and Amazon bestselling independently published works for readers of all ages. My previous YAs (A BLUE SO DARK, PLAYING HURT, and FERAL) have received starred reviews from Booklist and Publishers Weekly, won silver and gold medals from ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year and the IPPY Awards, respectively, been featured on Booklist’s First Novels for Youth, School Library Journal’s “What’s Hot in YA,” and been selected as a PW Pick.

Going hybrid means that I’ve been able to explore all sorts of new avenues—short fiction, sequels, I’m even going to be branching out into doing some illustrative work. Throughout 2016, I’m releasing one short story a month in the Forever Finley Short Story Cycle. The cycle begins with “Come December”: http://amzn.to/1oPioN5

Also, in honor of SPARK’s release, I’m holding a sale on PLAY IT AGAIN, the sequel to my YA romance, PLAYING HURT. For a limited time, PLAY IT AGAIN is $.99: http://amzn.to/1qCNVCe

Order Spark: Amazon | IndieBound

Don’t miss the rest of SPARK blog tour stops!

Week 1:
5/16: That Artsy Reader Girl – Guest Post
5/17: Novel Ink – Review
5/18: A Backwards Story – Character Interview
5/19: Pondering the Prose – Review
5/20: Such a Novel Idea – Playlist

Week 2:
5/23: The Book Addict’s Guide – Q&A
5/24: The Irish Banana Review – Review
5/25: YA Bookmark – Top 10
5/26: Bookwyrming Thoughts – Review
5/27: In Wonderland – Guest Post

GIVEAWAY

Three lucky winners will receive a finished copy of SPARK! Enter through the Rafflecopter form below and good luck!! (US only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Just A Girl – Ellie Cahill

Just A Girl – Ellie CahillTitle: Just a Girl by Ellie Cahill, Liz Czukas
Publishing Info: June 21, 2016 by Random House Publishing Group
Source: Netgalley
Genres: New Adult, Contemporary
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: March 28, 2016
Related Posts: When Joss Met Matt, Call Me, Maybe, Ask Again Later, Top Ten Clues You're Clueless

After getting kicked out of her own band—by her own boyfriend—Presley Mason finds herself back in Wisconsin, helping her parents run their renowned music store. Instead of belting out powerhouse vocals to sold-out crowds in L.A., she’s stocking shelves and inspecting rental violins. But the shop isn’t all bad: When she’s vacuuming up late one night, she bumps into the guitar teacher with the smoldering amber eyes and the killer tattoo. And that’s when things take an interesting turn.
Presley soon finds that Paul Kellerman is as good in bed as he is on guitar. So why isn’t he stoked to share his band, Jukebox Bleu, with her? Turns out Paul has crippling stage fright, which he’s been self-medicating without much success. But when Jukebox Bleu’s lead singer gets called for military service, the other members beg Presley to front them. Even though she swore never to mix men with music again, the temptation to perform is almost as intense as her chemistry with Paul. Now Presley must decide what’s more important: a second chance at love . . . or rock stardom.

bookreview1

I don’t read a ton of New Adult but I do have my favorite NA authors and Ellie Cahill is definitely one of them! I fell in love with her YA debut ASK AGAIN LATER and her NA debut WHEN JOSS MET MATT and every book from her since has been an insta-read for me. When I got approved to read an early copy of JUST A GIRL, I started almost immediately because I knew the book would be fun, flirty, and just the kind of romance I was in the mood for!

I really loved the music hook/theme throughout JUST A GIRL and it added such a fun and unique vibe. I love books that can really pull off a music scene because I’ve read several that involve music but JUST A GIRL is one of those books that really pulls you onto the scene and makes you feel like a part of the action! Ellie Cahill does an amazing job at establishing the musical settings, from music store to concert stage to practice rooms, and creating characters that wholly encompassed the feel as well. I’m always so impressed with an author who can really bring music to life in a book because I feel like that’s the hardest sense to evoke when reading and I was constantly able to make up songs in my head or identify with already-existing songs when referenced. I also really loved Presley’s playlists in between chapters based on what had just happened to her! They really added a little extra something to the book and they were so much fun, not to mention totally spot on.

As with any New Adult read, you expect romance and that is surely what you get in JUST A GIRL! The romance was cute, fun, and realistic. Presley ends up falling for a guitarist that teaches lessons at her parents’ music store and the two instantly hit it off. I actually really liked that Paul (the love interest) was a bit shy and found it refreshing to see some social anxieties in a male character instead of stereotypically finding in a female character. Presley is strong and confident, loving the stage and while Paul loves music, he has incredible stage fright that really prevents him from sharing his music in any way. I really enjoyed seeing the two characters work together in a romantic and mental sense and how they grew from getting to know each other. Their relationship was easy-going and yet meaningful as they both worked through their own issues to end up better people on the other side of this story. I really appreciated how realistic the whole book felt even with a sense of celebrity attached.

The whole book was just a fun and easy read. I loved getting swept away by the romance and again, the musical aspect was also just such a great touch. I was nearly done with the book and things were going so well that I almost forgot there had to be a big conflict! I was afraid of a little self-sabotage on Presley’s part but I really liked how the whole story ended up resolving and I thought it was a great conclusion without being too over-the-top happy ending. It was a very satisfying conclusion and very grounded.

Ellie Cahill (or Liz Czukas if you’re reading YA) is always such a delightful author to read! I love the levity to her books while still addressing serious issues. Any book of hers is an instant read for me and I’m always waiting for more! If you’re in the mood for some fun romances, her books are exactly what you need! view_from_goodreads1

“The View from Goodreads” is a featured section in my reviews that I decided to incorporate! I tend to update my Goodreads status a LOT when I read — reactions, feelings, notes — so I thought it would be fun to share the sort of “reading process”! All status updates are spoiler-free (no specific plot points will be revealed) but will contain reactions to certain pages and/or characters!

just a girl ellie cahill

character_breakdown1

Presley // Character Obsessions: Singing, performing, friendship, honesty.
Presley was a fun main character! She’s much more out-of-her-shell than I am so it was fun to have her take the lead in the story and I got to live vicariously through her a little! It was nice to see her have a little bit more of a confident and dominant personality over Paul and I kind of like that the stereotypical “norms” were flipped there.
Paul // Character Obsessions: Music, teaching, friendship, family.
Paul was a cute, boy-next-door-who-can-also-play-guitar type. He was a little bit edgy with his music a total softie and it was just adorable. I loved that sensitive side of him and that he had his own issues to work through that had nothing to do with relationship issues. It was great to see a different source of conflict and a thing to overcome that wasn’t a relationship hang-up.

addiction_factor1

Kept Me Hooked On: Music in books. Gosh, it’s just so rare that music and a musical atmosphere really comes ALIVE when reading. I love how JUST A GIRL really made me feel like I was on the scene. I could totally picture everything!
Left Me Wanting More: Tender moments. There were plenty of swoony and sexy moments but I was hoping for just a teeeeensy bit more personal connection between Presley and Paul. Just a couple more cliche cutesy moments that didn’t relate to Paul’s anxiety would have sealed the swoon for me!

Addiction Rating
Read it!

If you’re a fan of any of Ellie Cahill’s books (well I guess this is the third NA so you only have two New Adult books to choose from so far…) then you need to grab JUST A GIRL! It’s fun, clever, and just a delight.

book_recommendations1

BOOKS LIKE JUST A GIRL

(Click the cover to see my review!)

OPEN ROAD SUMMER    DIRTY LITTLE SECRET

Book and a Beverage [146] – Kathleen from Books, TV, and More… Oh My!

Book and a Beverage

Welcome back to BOOK AND A BEVERAGE!

In case you don’t know the deal about Book and a Beverage, it’s a very simple yet fun feature: We read books, we drink beverages, we take pictures of them and then I share your photos and a little about you to the blogging world!

Give a big welcome to Kathleen from Books, TV, and More… Oh My!

Book & Beverage

1

Name & Blog Name: Hi my name is Kathleen and my blog is Books, TV, and More… Oh My!
Tell us a little about your blog! I just started my blog in August. I’m new to the book community. I love pretty much all things entertainment, so the blog is going to be a mix of books, music, TV shows, movies and whatever else I feel like posting. Lol. I found the wonderful book community through my friend Lindsey who participated in #otspsecretsister and suggested I join. I did and the rest is history!
What’s been your favorite post you’ve written so far? (Link us up!): I don’t know if I’d call this my favorite, but I’m proud of it because it was the first book I got from a publisher for review. I was given Shade Me by Jennifer Brown from Epic Reads and I enjoyed it. Here’s the post But I also like the post introducing me.
Got anything special coming up we should know about? I do! (Well it started on May 4th, but it’s still going on!) I’m on a wonderful street team for Danika Stone’s book Edge of Wild that came out on May 1st! I’m having a giveaway for it and the giveaway will run from 5/4 til 5/31! Look for the posts that include an excerpt and a Q&A with Danika!

book

Whatcha reading? How to Keep Rolling After the Fall by Karole Cozzo
Where did it come from? (Library, purchased, publisher, etc): Publisher via NetGalley
Any special reason you chose to feature this book? I just got this book from NetGalley through their “wish” program and it sounded like a cute and fun read.
What’s important that we should know about this book? Would you recommend it? This book is such a great read. I really love the complexities of the characters Nikki and Pax. They are opposites, yet they work together. Karole Cozzo is a wonderful writer, and made me feel what the characters are feeling as the story progresses. The story does deal with cyber bullying and bullying in general and I think it’s handled nicely. It happens so often now, so it was nice reading a book that didn’t make light of the situation. I definitely recommend this book. It comes out in August!

beverage

Whatcha drinking? Diet Coke
What’s your favorite thing to drink while reading? Water or Diet coke. I don’t really drink anything else.
Favorite beverage of all time. Go! Diet Coke. Hands down. I even have a Christmas ornament of a can of Diet Coke. That’s how serious I am about it

bonus

What are your top three books you would recommend to other people? This is really hard because I feel like most people have probably read everything I’ve read. If I had to choose I’d recommend the HP series, I mean that’s a must read for everyone! GOT series, I’m only 2 books in, but I love them and can’t wait to finish them. Finally, for a more recent read that I loved, First & Then. It was such an amazing book. I think I read it in 2 days and that’s only because I had to sleep. As a bonus, I think everyone should read Where the Sidewalk Ends. I have two copies, because the one was read way too many times so it’s falling apart. I love this book of poems and think it’s fun to read at all ages.
What’s your proudest blogging/reading/writing moment? I have to say the thing I’m most proud of is being on Danika’s street team. I never thought I’d be able to read a book before it was released to the public. I never knew that was a thing until I went to NYCC in October. Then I was chosen to promote her book in March and I couldn’t have been happier. Not to mention it’s a great book that’s full of mystery!
Anything else you’d like to share? Thank you so much for having me on the blog today Brittany! I always love reading this feature on your blog. Anyone that wants to chat, just find me on twitter. I love talking to new people.


 Thanks so much, Kathleen! Oh excellent choices of Harry Potter and A Song of Ice and Fire! I totally agree. GoT is hefty but totally worth it!! 

I hope you enjoyed getting to know Kathleen! Connect with her at the links below!
Blog // Twitter // Pinterest // Goodreads // Instagram


And don’t forget! You can participate in Book and a Beverage at any time! Got a book? Got a beverage? Just tweet or post your photo on Instagram using the hashtag #bookandabeverage!#bookandabeverage