This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith

This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith

crop 1 This is What Happy Looks Like

A sugary sweet, light-hearted book. Fun, but predictable with a weak, disappointing ending.

The one redeeming point in the story is the exposure of the paparazzi, who deserve all the bad press they get for their invasion of privacy. Although the producers and buyers of ‘skinner’ (Afrikaans word for gossip) magazines are just as bad – ensuring the paparazzi get paid for their trash.3 Star

Recommended age: 12+

Title: This is What Happy Looks likeThis is What Happy Looks Like
Series: This is What Happy Looks Like #1
Author: Jennifer E. Smith
Publication Date: 2 April 2013
Publisher: Headline
Source: Library

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If fate sent you an email, would you answer?

When teenage movie star Graham Larkin accidentally sends small town girl Ellie O’Neill an email about his pet pig, the two seventeen-year-olds strike up a witty and unforgettable correspondence, discussing everything under the sun, except for their names or backgrounds. 

Then Graham finds out that Ellie’s Maine hometown is the perfect location for his latest film, and he decides to take their relationship from online to in-person. But can a star as famous as Graham really start a relationship with an ordinary girl like Ellie? And why does Ellie want to avoid the media’s spotlight at all costs?   — Extract from Goodreads.com

Happy Birthday Roald Dahl!

Happy Birthday Roald Dahl!

Happy Birthday RD

I love Dahl’s wacky humour, and as a family we collectively agree that our all time favourite Roald Dahl book is the audio edition of The Giraffe, The Pelly and Me narrated by Hugh Laurie.

It’s an experience nobody should miss so gather your friends and family together for this one – it’s too funny not to share.

RD Audio

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Ghetto by M L Sparrow

Ghetto by M L Sparrow Ghetto crop

Ghetto is an exciting read, full of action, adventure and intense relationships.

The futuristic world was realistic and characters extremely well-developed. The ghetto itself is reminiscent of the Jewish ghettos in Poland during Nazi occupation and is just as horrifying. The propaganda, which allows the general public to continue life blind to the horrors occurring next door, rang true and hit home as this is close to the reality of our South African past.

History has a habit of repeating itself and books like Ghetto are excellent reminders of where we don’t want to be in the future.4 Star

Recommended age: 13+

Title: Ghetto
Author: M L SparrowGhetto
Publication Date: 15 September 2015
Publisher: M L Sparrow
Source: Free copy from author in exchange for honest review
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My name’s Sunny Grace Beaumont. Branded SGB/2/6895/03.12.93. Only child, self-taught computer geek and cancer survivor. Oh, and did I mention my dad’s the President? As you can imagine that’s sometimes a little problematic, especially when I want to sneak out. But it never got me into quite as much trouble as the night I ventured into the Ghetto – don’t ask me why I was there in the first place… it was stupid. Everyone knows that the Ghetto is where hardened criminals are sent to live out the remainder of their lives. At first the men that kidnap me are just as I’d imagine, mean and thoughtless, but slowly I begin to have doubts. 

I meet a guy. His name’s Sin, he has no Brand – a crime punishable by death – and he’s the rebel leader. I should hate him… but I don’t. Instead he opens my eyes to a whole other side of the Ghetto, where people are innocent of the crimes they’re accused of and helpless children suffer dreadful poverty. Is it possible that I’ve been lied to my entire life… that the governments been deceiving everyone? And how can I challenge the law my own dad is adamant to uphold?   — 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.

Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout Don't Look Back crop

I loved this book. Unpredictable and scary, the suspense kept me on the edge of my seat. I had to hang on with my nails – there was no way I was going to put the book down!

I didn’t recognise the name on the street sign. . .

The words flowed easily across the pages and delivered the well thought out plot in bite size pieces, just enough to keep me on my toes. The cover is beautiful and really effective, but I hope it’s girliness won’t put off  male readers because this book transcends gender.

This is the first of Jennifer L. Armentrout’s books that I have read, but it definitely won’t be the last.5 Star

Recommended age: 13+

Title: Don’t Look Back
Author: Jennifer L. Armentroutx Don't Look Back Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publication Date: 15 April 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Source: Purchased

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Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend. 

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it’s one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took “mean girl” to a whole new level, and it’s clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She’s getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she’s falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash. 

But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn’t just buried deep inside of Sam’s memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?   — Extract from Goodreads.com

Hell Bent by Karen Crompton

Hell Bent by Karen Crompton

Hell Bent cropped

A contemporary young adult fiction with a welcome change – a male POV. This was one of the deciding points when I agreed to read the book for review.

Grief is portrayed realistically in this solid, if predictable story but I was so disappointed when the secrets behind the story were revealed too soon, leaving little to look forward too.

I disliked the central character Beau intensely and just couldn’t connect with him. It wasn’t the bad boy behaviour that I didn’t like but the appalling way he treats girls and although his attitude eventually improves I wasn’t convinced it was genuine.

 

Recommended age: 14+3 Star

Title: Hell Bent
Series: South Shore Beach # 1
Author: Karen Crompton                          Hellbent
Publication Date: 13 November 21014
Publisher: Silky Oak Press
Source: Free copy from author in exchange for honest review

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He’s charming. He’s rebellious. And he’s as beautiful as he is damaged. 

South Shore’s bad-boy surfer Beau Huntington has a solid plan to get through life: one night stands, getting wasted, and walls so high no one can ever get in – it’s all about numbing the pain. 
And his plan’s working fine – until he meets Corrie Johnson. 

Corrie is smart, determined and focused on an elite swimming scholarship. But she has a dark past of her own, and keeps her secrets closely guarded. She’s made promises to herself not to let history repeat – ever. But is there more to Beau than he’s letting on? And is it time to let herself feel again? 

It’s summer holidays and that’s when things start to unravel. 
Because falling in love was never part of the plan. 

It’s time for Beau to learn that the fight of his life doesn’t involve his fists.
— 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.

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