I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

I'll Meet You There crop

I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

My blood was carbonated, and I was awake and young and alive, and screw everything because this moment was mine.

This book is still at my side 12 hours after I finally put it down in the early hours of this morning. Oh the feels! The characters still sing to me from between the pages, enticing me to meet them again next to the pool at  the Paradise Motel.  I wish there was a sequel I could read right now! I’m not ready to say goodbye.

It was the stunning cover that initially caught my eye, and I ‘m thrilled that the story lived up to expectations. Luckily I have my copy because I know I will want to read it again. And again.

Heather Demetrios you’ve been added to my list of ‘auto-buy’ authors.

And I stood there on the knife’s edge of us, holding my breath, time expanding so that I felt every drop of rain, every thud of my heart.

Recommended age: 14+5 Star

 

Title: I’ll Meet You There
Author: Heather Demetrios I'll Meet You There
Publication Date:
3 February 2015
Publisher:
Henry Holt and Company
Source:
Prize in online blogger competition

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Book Depository
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If seventeen-year-old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straightedge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.

Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.     — Extract from Goodreads.com

One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij

One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij

One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij - YA Book Review

One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij – YA Book Review

I was sucked into the story right from the beginning and I loved the passionate, gritty, complicated characters.

The story was intense and the build-up towards the revelation of a family secret riveting, but the anti-climax stopped the story in its tracks.  After such anticipation, I was disappointed at the little effect the revelation had on the relevant family members and it was this that ultimately let the book down.

Despite just missing a 5-star rating, this is a beautiful story and fans of Katie McGarry will love it. And just look at the cover! I ♥ it!4 Star

Recommended age: 13+

Title: One, Two, ThreeOne Two Three 1
Series: Broken Dreams # 1
Author: Elodie Nowodazkij
Publication Date:
26 June 2014
Publisher: Createspace
Source:
Free copy from author in
exchange for an honest review

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Amazon.co.uk
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When seventeen-year-old Natalya’s dreams of being a ballerina are killed in a car accident along with her father, she must choose: shut down—like her mother—or open up to love. 

Last year,seventeen-year-old Natalya Pushkaya was attending the School of Performing Arts in New York City. Last year, she was well on her way to becoming a professional ballerina. Last year, her father was still alive.

But a car crash changed all that—and Natalya can’t stop blaming herself. Now, she goes to a regular high school in New Jersey; lives with her one-time prima ballerina, now alcoholic mother; and has no hope of a dance career.

At her new school, however, sexy soccer player Antonio sees a brighter future for Natalya, or at least, a more pleasant present. Keeping him an arabesque away proves to be a challenge for Natalya and his patient charms eventually draw her out of her shell. 

When upsetting secrets come to light and Tonio’s own problems draw her in, Natalya shuts down again, this time turning to alcohol herself.

Can Natalya learn to trust Antonio before she loses him—and destroys herself?   — Extract from Goodreads.com 

The fact that I received this copy of this book from the author does not influence my policy to write an honest review.

Romance Ahead… Bookish Couples for Valentine’s Day

Created using Picmonkey.com

Created using Picmonkey.com

It’s almost Valentine Day and the shops are full of (mostly tacky) red and pink heart-shaped items. While I don’t appreciate the commercial side of the day renowned for its high expectations and grotesquely overpriced novelties, I am a sucker for romance. It might be possible I read more soppy happily-ever-after love stories than I admit. Shh!

This year with my husband across the ocean, my date will be a romantic book. Any suggestions as to which one I should download to my Kindle?

Everyone has at least one favourite bookish couple. I have so many that it was difficult to narrow the choices to fit into this post. These are in no particular order.  Click on the image to read more about the book.

Have you met any of these couples?  Who are your favourite bookish couples?  

Let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

Romance Ahead… Bookish Couples for Valentine’s Day

Noah & Allie couple

Echo & Noah couple

Pelagia and Captain Corelli Couple

James and Nuala couple

Eleanor & Park couple

Elizabeth and Mr Darcy couple

Edward and Bella couple

Anna and Étienne couple

Allyson & Willem couple

Karou & Akiva couple

Top Ten Tuesday reduced

 

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish.

 

Scarred by Joanne MacGregor

Scarred by Joanne MacGregor

Scarred crop

“And he sees me, recognises me. Time stretches out slowly and sweetly like a piece of soft toffee. . .”

A tender, sensitive story of hope and redemption.

Then he looks back into my eyes and this time his are full of deep revulsion.

While the book started off on a high and the words glide easily across the pages throughout, the plot was predictable, and I thought the twists revealed too early.

In contrast, it was the complex characters that stole the show and I loved getting to know them. The alternating PVO’s allowed insight into their thoughts and drew me in. I particularly loved the witty banter between Sloane and Luke that emerges in the latter part of the story.

Hell is the guilt that termites holes into my happiness. . .

Recommended age: 12+4 Star

Title: Scarred
Author: Joanne MacGregor
Publication Date: 29 September 2015Scarred
Publisher: Createspace
Source: Free copy from author
in exchange for honest review

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Life leaves you scarred. Love can make you beautiful.

Sloane Munster had the perfect life, until she didn’t. Now seventeen year-old Sloane is trying to reboot her life after a serious accident left her badly scarred and emotionally traumatized.

Starting her senior year at a different school, she recognizes Luke Naughton, a swimmer whom she once had a crush on, in her new class. But when she smiles at him, he glares back with revulsion and she’s sure he’s disgusted by her ugly scar. No matter how hard she tries to keep out of his way, life keeps bringing them together and despite misunderstandings and guilty secrets, the chemistry between them sparks. Meanwhile, tensions are mounting at their school where bullying is rife and Sloane is not the most deeply scarred person.

Sharp with bittersweet humor, Scarred is an intense, beautiful, compelling story of life, death, damage, and fighting for love against all the odds.   — Extract from Goodreads.com

The fact that I received this copy of this book from the author does not influence my policy to write an honest review.

Clean by Mia Kerick

Clean by Mia Kerick

Clean crop

In his eye lives the most brutal, bare, raw agony imaginable

Clean is a realistic, hard-hitting, gritty story which will take you on a tortuous journey to the dark side of humanity. The two main characters, whose PVO’s alternate, are both desperate for love and affection and look for solace, in each other but more so in alcohol and drugs. Predictably their choices take them down the slippery slope of addiction.

This story covers important topics, but I found that the further into the story I ventured the more I thought the author occasionally slips over the thin-line between storytelling and preaching.

Overall, a readable, relatable book that will be difficult to forget.

Postscript: I found the cover unappealing and the title ‘Clean’ irked me all the way through. I couldn’t shake the mental picture of housework!

Recommended age: 15+ (mature content)3 Star

Title: Clean
Author: Mia Kerick
Publication Date:
Publisher: Createspace
Source: Free copy from author in exchange for honest review

Purchase this book:Clean
Amazon.com

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Book Depository
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The fact that I received this copy of this book from the author does not influence my policy to write an honest review.

High school senior Lanny Keating has it all. A three-sport athlete at Lauserville High School looking at a college football scholarship, with a supportive family, stellar grades, boy band good looks… until the fateful day when it all falls apart.
 
Seventeen-year-old Trevor Ladd has always been a publicly declared zero and the high school bad-boy. Abandoned by his mother and sexually abused by his legal guardian, Trevor sets his sights on mere survival.
 
Lanny seeks out Trevor’s companionship to avoid his shattered home life. Unwilling to share their personal experiences of pain, the boys explore ways to escape, leading them into sexual experimentation, and the
abuse of illegal drugs and alcohol. Their mutual suffering creates a lasting bond of friendship and love.
 
When the time finally comes to get clean and sober, or flunk
out of high school, only one of the boys will graduate while the other spirals downward into addiction.
 
Will Lanny and Trevor find the strength to battle their demons of mind-altering substances as well as emotional vulnerability?
 
Clean takes the reader on a gritty trip into the real and raw world of teenage substance abuse.

– Description provided by Red Moon Book Tours

 

Excerpt”

PROLOGUE
 
Lanny
 
Trevor wouldn’t even look at me when I walked over to the
gas station this morning to say hi. And Jimmy’s Fuel Stop is like three miles from my house so it took a major effort to walk there, especially since I’ve been feeling like total crap lately. Another one of my shaky human bonds bites the dust. I need to go out and get myself a cat.
 
“Can’t you see I’m working, Keating?” That was all he said. But I’ve always been good at reading between the lines. I could tell what he was thinking as he stood beside the gas pumps, totally caught up in not looking at me. “Take a hike before you get me fired, loser. Some of us got goals in life….” So I took off before he had a chance to make me feel like I shouldn’t have ever made an appearance on the planet earth. But I still know it would have been better had I never been born…maybe Joelle would still be okay.
 
It’s Saturday afternoon and nobody’s home. Mom and Dad are probably off at the park with Joelle, sloshing through the wet snow together so she gets her daily exercise. Or maybe they took her to the make-your-own-sundae-place to improve her fine motor skills by sprinkling sweet toppings on big scoops of ice cream. I’m in Mom and Dad’s bathroom, bent in half with my head stuck in the closet, searching the cluttered shelves for anything that will get me high enough to escape. And I mean anything.
 
That’s when I see the cough syrup. The bottle in front is almost new, and there’s an older bottle of a different brand right behind it, little more than halfway full. Seeing these medicine bottles reminds me of something Chad suggested about a week or two ago— that we should try robo-tripping. He told me that if we drink enough cough syrup, the DXM in it would get us high in a “super blissful, tingling-body-parts way,” which sounded pretty decent to me then and still does now. Not completely surprised I remembered Chad’s exact description of a DXM high, I thank God for this dextromethorphan stuff that suppresses nasty coughs, because it looks like I’m going to find my much-needed buzz after all.
 
Pleased that I don’t have to resort to sniffing glue from the tube on my father’s basement workbench or huffing my mother’s hairspray—and believe me I came close—I snatch the bottles with a shaky hand. They’re both sticky with the syrup that dripped down the side last time one of the Keating’s
had a major head cold accompanied by a hacking cough. Licking my fingers provides me with a hint of the cherry flavor I’m probably going to be barfing up later tonight. But I don’t care. I can’t get through a single day without some help, and by that I don’t mean help from my human friends, seeing as I have none left.
Bio: Mia Kerick
 Image and video hosting by TinyPicMia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty-two years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.
 
She focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled young people and their
relationships, and she believes that physical intimacy has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safe keeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press, Harmony Ink Press, CoolDudes Publishing, and CreateSpace for providing her with alternate places to stash her stories.
 

Mia is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights, especially marital equality. Now marital equality is the law of the land!! WOOT!! Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology. 

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