180 Seconds

180 Seconds by Jessica Park

4 cried my eyes out stars

“It’s going to hurt until it doesn’t anymore.”

180 seconds is about a college junior Allison. After sixteen years of being tossed around the foster care system, unwanted, she was adopted by her father. Now years later in college, she still lacks social skills and would prefer to spend her time studying or in her room. While talking a walk one day, she gets roped into a social experiment where two people stare into each others eyes for 180 seconds, no breaks. The person she does this with is another college junior named Esben, and the experience has a profound effect on the both of them.

“We are engaged in a form of intimacy that scares the absolute hell out of me. It’s as if there is a weight on my chest that I want to shove off, and I’ve never been this terrified before.
Or this whole and hopeful and connected.
My body starts to tremble. I want more of what I’m feeling, and I also want none of it.”

I went into blind and it was wonderful! It was on the sweeter side and more emotional than I usually like my books, but I still really enjoyed it all the same. I love heroines that aren’t the norm, and Allison wormed her way into my heart very early on in the book. This is a story not just about love, but friendship, family and kindness to others. But what I loved most actually was this was a new adult college read: I really missed reading that kind of book, it feels like no one is writing them anymore.

Anyways, if you are up for an intensely emotional novel, this book is the one for you! I really liked it and look forward to more that Park has to offer readers in the future.

“You can’t reach what’s in front of you until you let go of what’s behind you.”

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Where We Left Off

Where We Left Off by Roan Parrish

3.5 stars

“In Zeno’s paradox, halving the distance between you and what you sought meant that you would go on forever, always moving closer but never actually reaching it. But maybe if you set your sights on a thing beyond what you sought then you would eventually find yourself smack in the middle of it, having tricked the universe into rendering up exactly what you wanted.”

Roan Parrish is easily one of my new favorite authors that I discovered this year. Her writing is spectacular and she always manages to deliver complex and empathetic characters while highlighting issues most readers don’t really consider in their day to day lives. When we met Leo and Will back in the first book of this series, their story was one I was highly anticipating and was longing for.

That’s why it kills me that I didn’t love this book. I think my expectations were way too high and the reality of Will and the insurmountable ass he ended up being were too much for me.

Where We Left Off felt more like a coming of age novel to me than a romance, Leo is dropped in a new environment and he doesn’t know anyone and he must navigate this new world on his own. I really enjoyed his personal story, seeing the young boyish person he was at the beginning and then going through all of his experiences and epiphanies that made him into a young man by the end of the book. Essentially he needed to learn that he cannot mold himself to please everyone and at some point he has to let things go and let them be. The side characters were brilliant, I loved all of Leo’s college friends and coworkers, but then again Roan is amazing at setting a scene and creating characters that are so vivid and real to the reader.

What I cannot really get past is Will and the giant bag of dicks he ended up being. By the end of the book I understood where he was coming from, but I feel he used his past to make excuses for who he was instead of overcoming it and being a better person for it. I know Parrish doesn’t usually do dual POVs but this is a story I feel could have very much benefitted from it because I think I would have been more empathetic of Will knowing his background, instead of being left in the dark like Leo was.

I did like this book, despite my issues with Will I couldn’t put the book down. Plus on top of that there are some angsty bits and my angst whore ways ate it up. I loved the pop culture references interspersed throughout the book, luckily I’ve watched Felicity so I understood a lot of them. As I said before the characters feel like people I would meet in person, no one part of them felt fictionalized. By this I mean Parrish could easily have picked a real person and stuck them in the book. But I wish there had been more than what the ending gave, a very quickly wrapped up happy for now scenario. I was left feeling dissatisfied.

I still love Roan Parrish and no matter what I will continue to buy and read her books because she’s an amazing author and she writes great stories. Period. I do recommend if you haven’t read books 1 and 2 in this series to go and do so now because they are excellent and among some of my favorite books.

“My feelings for Will were a tender and naked heart beating tentatively in an iron cage, each expansion a risk, each deflation both relief and disappointment.”

#Nerd

#Nerd by Cambria Hebert

4 stars!

“No one wanted to deal with damaged. It made them uncomfortable.”

#Nerd is the comedic story of Rimmel and Romeo. When Rimmel is told she is supposed to tutor the star football player and campus star Romeo, she’s not exactly thrilled. Rimmel blends into the background as much as she can, hiding behind her long hair and her baggy clothing. When Romeo meets Rimmel, he’s not impressed and doesn’t take her seriously. On top of that, Romeo is rushing a frat, one that is ruthless. And they now want him to sleep with Rimmel as a part of his initiation.

“You asked me why I’m here,” he murmured, leaning in so he was so close his lips brushed mine as he spoke. “This is why I’m here, Rimmel. Can’t you feel it too?”

I really enjoyed this book. It may be predictable, sweet and a little bit cliché, but it all WORKED. Rimmel is a character I fell in love with, her insecurities, her feelings of loneliness, and then watching her bloom into a beautiful young lady. Rimmel’s transformation was my favorite part of the book. Romeo ended up being a great hero, he didn’t get off to a great start with me, but by the end of the book I was rooting for him.

If you are looking for a great break from reality, this is the book for you. I cannot wait to read the rest of the books in this series, as this one was so much fun.

“When did everything get so damn complicated?”
“When your life became about more than just football.”
“You sound like Yoda.”
“It’s the beer.”

A Perfect Ten

A Perfect Ten by Linda Kage

3.75 stars!

“I was supposed to go with you, wherever you went. We’re a team. You told me once that I had to have a place. Well, I finally figured out where it is. It’s with you.”

A Perfect Ten is the fifth book in the Forbidden Men series. Oren “Ten” Tenning is the college manwhore that no one takes seriously. Caroline is the little sister of Ten’s best friend Noel (the hero of book 2 in the series). There’s always been an attraction between the two of them, but Ten puts up barriers because he doesn’t want to destroy his relationship with his best friend. One day Caroline hatches a totally crazy scheme involving Ten, and he doesn’t even know it.

“What the fuck have you done to me Caroline? … Why couldn’t I stay away from you? … Why can’t I get enough of you? … What do I want to own every fucking piece of you?”

To be completely honest, this was potentially gonna be another wildcard book for me. I almost didn’t finish this book. I know I know, I hide from the tomatoes being thrown my way, but the first 50% I really wasn’t connecting. LUCKILY I pushed and kept reading and ended up thoroughly enjoying by the end. Ten won me over and pushed his way into my heart.

Like I said before this book was really slow at the beginning, like really slow. But once Caroline and Ten stopped messing around and started dealing with the realities of their relationship I really started to enjoy this book. I love angsty stories, be it caused by romance or otherwise and the tension and issues they faced as a couple, I ate it up like the freaky angst whore I am. I’m glad I dipped my feet back into this series because I loved the first two books and cannot wait to continue reading the rest.

“How can I help you through this? What can I do to ease your pain, because I swear to God, I’ll do anything.”
Absolutely anything.
She set her hand on her heart and looked up at me, her eyes filled with so much emotion, I swear, some of it overflowed, spilling into me. “Just love me,” she whispered.
“I do,” I promised.”

All Lined Up

All Lined Up by Cora Carmack

2.75-3 stars

“God, do they make WD-40 for flirting? Because I am rusty.”

All Lined Up is the story of Dallas, a dance major and Carson, a football player. Both meet at a college party, Dallas not knowing Carson is on the team, and Carson not knowing that Dallas is the daughter of his new football coach. They begin to spend time together, forming a friendship but holding romantic feelings for each other at the same time.

“I don’t know that dancing fixes anything. I don’t feel magically happy because of it. My problems don’t disappear when the music ends. But I understand life better when I dance, and understanding is half the fight of surviving.”

Rusk University is a series I’ve been meaning to read, and now that three books are out I decided to dive in. Plus my local library has it, and who can deny a free book? This was more like a YA story than an NA one. Yes it was a little bit more racy than a YA book, but barely. I found I couldn’t really relate to either of the characters in this book and maybe that’s why I didn’t love it. Regardless the story in this fell flat for me. I kind of liked it, but I wasn’t invested in it, or in what would happen to the characters.

Cora’s other series I rated in this order:
Losing It: 3 stars
Faking It: 4 stars
Finding It: 5 stars

So based on the above written I am totally willing to keep reading this series, as this author has proven I can like, really like, and love her work.

“I’ve spent too much time pretending, too much time on the outside, too much time feeling spineless. This time… I’m going after what I want.”

The Fifteenth Minute

The Fifteenth Minute (Ivy Years #5) by Sarina Bowen

5 stars!

“The only time I feel like myself is when I am with you.”

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First off, a HUGE thank you to Wendy who helped get me this arc. You ended my suffering!! Muah!

The fifth book in the Ivy Years series, this book can techincally be read as a standalone, but so many of the characters from the first four books appear that I highly recommend reading them in order. Plus they’re awesome so you should read them anyway.

The Fifteenth Minute is the story of Lianne and DJ. We met Lianne in the previous book, she is the Hollywood star roommate to Bella who spends most of her college life in class or shut in her dorm room playing video games. DJ is the well, DJ for the hockey team and brother of one of the players. The two have always had a mutual attraction between them, but Lianne is nowhere near brave enough to act on it.

After being together for many hockey team events, DJ finally asks out Lianne. But DJ has mistakes from his past coming back to haunt his future, and his days at Harkness are limited. Lianne is dealing with the agent from hell promoting her to due nude scenes and more uncomfortable things, but not supporting her endeavors to break out into new roles. Can these two break past their issues and come together?

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I am so beyond thrilled that Lianne got her own book! The previous book she was so closed off from everyone around her, I’m glad she was able to make new friends and experience new things. DJ was the perfect guy for her, he was sweet without being cheesy, and he genuinely like Lianne for her as a person and not who she was on screen.

I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but I will say my heart went out to DJ in this book for the struggle he went through. It wasn’t an easy or fair situation that he was in but he handled it to the best of his abilities.

Lianne and DJ together were magic, low angst, no bullshit (at least in my opinion) and a huge helping of romance cheese free (my favorite!!). They supported each other the way couples should, they accepted the other for who they were and kept the drama to the minimum… what more could you want from an NA college romance?

Anyways, I adore Sarina Bowen and will read anything she writes. The Ivy Years series is one of the most addictive I’ve read in a long time and I highly recommend it to anyone and everyone!

ARC kindly provided by author in exchange for an honest review

Heat

Heat (Elements of Chemistry #2) by Penny Reid

5 Barnacle stars!

“We can’t change the past. But we can change how much importance we allow it to have over our future.”

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OMFG THE SHIT IS BANANAS- B-A-N-A-N-A-S!!!! Loved it!!!!!!

Okay over here just freaking out a little. By my reaction and rating I bet you can tell I loved this book (and I did). WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG TO READ THIS SERIES?????

Okay okay I’ll calm down a bit, I promise. For now.

Heat picks up where Attraction left off with Martin and Kaitlyn resolving a misunderstanding and then going about their business while on the island on spring break. As the two of them get to know each other in what Kaitlyn calls relationship boot camp, things are beginning to heat up between the two of them. Both have barriers built, but the other does their best to knock them down. And pretty soon feelings of attraction develop into something deeper.

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First off, I love stories where the guy pursues the reluctant girl. Most romances involve a girl somewhat taming the playboy and for once it’s nice to see the guy doing the work. Plus, being a nerdy girl myself, it struck close to my heart that Martin went after the nerdy girl with barriers and he went after her hard.

“I like you because you are Kaitlyn—genuine, beautiful, brilliant, amazing Kaitlyn—not because you’re Kaitlyn Parker. And I’m in love with you because I can’t help myself.”

Now for my favorite part of the book. THE ANGST. I basically eat angst for all my meals (including second breakfast, first lunch and predinner).
This is what I look like eating angst:

For realz yo.

While this book still had its comedic moments, the tone turned a bit more serious as it went on because it delved into the issues surrounding Kaitlyn and Martin’s lives. Martin has a real dick of a father, like the type of people who should be forever stuck in torture lands where they hear fingernails on the chalkboard sounds 24/7.

Kaitlyn struggles with believing that Martin really wants her for her and that this relationship could be real. The two seem to be on different wavelengths at times with Martin at full speed ahead and Kaitlyn dropping her anchor to slow down. I have to agree with her on many of the issues Martin was moving too fast, but his heart was in the right place.

“I’m not trying to hurt you. I just want us to be—”
“Smart,” he finished for me, his resentful gaze softening as it moved over my face. ” I know. You always want to be smart and do the right thing. But the problem is, Parker… I just want you.”

Having only read 2 Penny Reid books before this series, and enjoying but not loving them, I can say for sure with this series I am a convert. Thanks again to Dee, Jasmine and Sharon for the series recommendation! You ladies rock!

And thanks to Jas from The Reading Escapade Book Blog for fielding all my texts LMAO!
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The Shameless Hour

The Shameless Hour (The Ivy Years #4) by Sarina Bowen

5 stars!

“It’s hard to admit you’re just in someone’s periphery when you imagined you were closer to the center of their world.”

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Sarina Bowen just keeps getting better and better! The Shameless Hour is the story of Bella and Rafe. Bella is the free loving college senior and manager of the hockey team. She loves sex and isn’t afraid to admit it. Rafe is a sophomore on the verge of losing his virginity to his girlfriend, until the break up on the same night of the sleep together plan. Bella and Rafe live in the same dorm, and when Bella finds a distraught Rafe, she gets drunk with him. One thing leads to another and the two spend an explosive evening together. But the next morning Rafe panics, and leaves Bella wondering what went wrong.

As the school year passes the two remain friends and grow closer. Until a horrible night wrecks Bella and rips away her confidence, and Rafe is the one to pick up the pieces.

“You’re not okay. And I’m the one who noticed.”

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Sarina Bowen has found a forever fan in me. I basically binge read this entire series so far and cannot wait for the 5th book about Lianne. Also, I have a gigantic soft spot for any romances where the woman is the one that’s more experienced and the guy isn’t. If I have to read one more goddamn NA romance where the virginal girl sleeps with the bad boy I am going to blow my brains out. It’s refreshing to read a new take on genre, and without feeding into stereotype of virginal college girls.

I loved Bella as a heroine. She lived her life and didn’t give a crap what others thought. And yet there was this beautiful vulnerable side to her that remained below the surface. Reading her ordeal brought tears to my eyes, and her strength was one of my favorite things about her.

Rafe, well I’m not normally one for the Latin guys, but I was sold on him! I loved that he was a GOOD guy, and not always super alpha, but it didn’t mean being nice made him weak. It made him a catch. He was thoughtful of others, cared for those he loved, and worked hard for what he wanted.

I’ve said before that it must be right place right time, because I loved this series. It may not be for everyone, but it worked for me. Kicking myself for not having read it sooner. By the way this is the fourth book in a series and CAN be read as a standalone novel.

Purchase on Amazon

The Understatement of the Year

The Understatement of the Year (The Ivy Years #3) by Sarina Bowen

4.5 stars!

“Getting along together was never the problem with you and me. We’re both easy. It’s just the rest of the world that’s hard.”

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This series keeps getting better and better! The Understatement of the Year is a male/male romance about hockey players Rikker and Graham. This story parallels the second story, following the same timeline but not connecting all too often. When Rikker and Graham were in middle school they were best friends. Entering into high school their feelings developed into something more. The two were headed down a romantic road until a horrible incident separated them, leaving one beaten and broken and the other paralyzed with fear.

“There weren’t any time-outs, though. Not in life, and not in hockey.”

Now about 5 years later Graham is on the hockey team for his school Harkness and a new player just came on board… Rikker. The two haven’t seen each other in years, and for Graham who is deeply in the closet, it’s a full system shock. Rikker was outed at his last deeply conservative college and transferred to Harkness when he was pulled from his other hockey team. Rikker just wants to play hockey and move on with his life, out in the open.

As the year goes on Graham and Rikker confront each other and their buried feelings. Rikker has finally become comfortable with himself, but Graham is spiralling down a dark path and it might be up to Rikker to save him.

“We’d been so close all those years ago. My subconscious just couldn’t get over the idea that we weren’t anymore.”

I think I read this series at exactly the right time. I haven’t read a new adult series that I wanted to devour all at once, and here I am binge reading this one. M/M is one of my favorite genres and this book blended NA with MM perfectly. For those of you hardcore MM fans out there, this one may be a little too sweet, but I loved it. It had the perfect amount of angst for me (buckets full) and Graham’s struggle with who he was is what made this book so special. Yes some gay men struggle with who they are, but Graham was given the worst dose of reality of what could happen at a very young age and it scarred him and fucked him up for a while.

“It turns out that trying to ignore somebody is about the most, exhausting thing in the world.”

One of the more interesting side characters was Skippy and I loved his sass. Especially the scene with him and Rikker’s mom. That one had me literally laughing out loud in public.

I was absorbed in this book from the very first page, I loved seeing the romance play out and how the complications and issues were dealt with. You would think that now, in our time people would be more open minded, but that’s not the case and it makes me sad. Love is love. It’s beautiful. And it’s that simple to me.

So if I haven’t convinced you yet, please go out and read this series.

Fangirl

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

6 stars! No, 10 stars!

“I don’t trust anybody. Not anybody. And the more that I care about someone, the more sure I am they’re going to get tired of me and take off.”

You know when you find a book that just clicks with every part of you? That one special book that feels like coming home? That’s what Fangirl is to me. A second home between a bunch of pages. I first read this book when it came out and I adored it. But as time went by I found myself sneaking short little rereads of my favorite scenes; reading them between books and reading them when I was supposed to be reading something else. I even have three copies. Three. An ebook, the original hardcover, and now the B&N Special Edition. Honestly, with this full reread, Fangirl is up there among my all time favorite books. And it’s up there with Harry Potter.

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^^^Fan art on the inside cover of the special edition. I love it!

For some reason, Cather and her character really resonate with me. She’s extremely relatable to me. No I’m not a twin. No I don’t write/read fanfiction (except for that phase when I was 13 with the Buffy fanfiction but let’s not go there). I don’t have an absentee mother. And I don’t live in the midwest. But much of what Cather feels throughout this book is what I have felt many times before. That lost feeling when you start college with no friends. Navigating a new world like swimming for the first time without floaties.

“In new situations, all the trickiest rules are the ones nobody bothers to explain to you. (And the ones you can’t Google.)”

I’m getting ahead of myself. If you are not familiar with the plot this book is about college freshman Cather who starts at her school basically being ditched by her twin sister Wren who is going through some kind of identity crisis. Left with no friends, Cath writes Simon Snow fanfiction. Which is kind of like this world’s Harry Potter. With Harry and Malfoy (Simon and Baz) as gay lovers (in Cath’s stories anyway). Cath’s roommate is incredibly intimidating and always brings around her guy friend Levi, the nicest guy you’ll ever meet.

“Real life was something happening in her peripheral vision.”

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I love practically everything about this book. The humor and the wit in the dialogue are just spot on.

“I feel sorry for you, and I’m going to be your friend.”
“I don’t want to be your friend,” Cath said as sternly as she could. “I like that we’re not friends.”
“Me, too. I’m sorry you ruined it by being so pathetic.”

“Are you on drugs?”
“No.”
“Maybe you should be.…”

But there’s also a great balance of seriousness in the book as well. Cather’s struggles with writing things other than fanfiction. Her father and his mental breakdowns. Rainbow Rowell did an absolutely perfect job blending the humor and the real together.

Now to the big one. Levi.
Whenever I think of Levi, I think of this:
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Friends, I NEVER thought after all of my alpha male romance reads that I would fall head over heels for the NICE guy. Seriously, Levi is one of the best book boyfriends out there in the verse. He’s unique; he loves all people, smiles all the time, lanky, positive attitude and more. I just wish Rowell would stop referencing his receding hairline. It does not make for a great mental picture lol.

“I really like you. Like, really like you. And I want that kiss to have been the start of something. Not the end.”

I love that there is no over the top drama or mind melting angst in this book. Just a wonderful, captivating story with characters so real you wish they really were real just so you could meet them. Rainbow Rowell is just absolutely astounding as a writer. I love her writing style and her voice. It honestly is what makes this book so so special.

“Just… isn’t giving up allowed sometimes? Isn’t it okay to say, ‘This really hurts, so I’m going to stop trying’?”
“It sets a dangerous precedent.”
“For avoiding pain?”
“For avoiding life.”

Hopefully I haven’t overhyped this book for anyone out there. I can only hope that my review convinced you to read this, and that you connect with it just as much as I did.

Last Will and Testament

Last Will and Testament by Dahlia Adler

4 stars!

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I’m actually kind of bewildered that this book isn’t more popular. It’s a new adult gem!

Last Will and Testament is about college student Lizzie who just found out that her parents both died in a tragic accident leaving her as the guardian over her two little brothers. Lizzie moves her brothers up to college with her, but finds she is falling behind in her classes and asks her history TA to help tutor her. Thus, romance! Just kidding, but the two fall into a friendship and very soon feelings spark up.

I really liked the banter between Lizzie and Connor. He was the perfect “nerdy” good guy that Lizzie needed and Lizzie seemed to be Connor’s dream girl and self confidence booster. There was a little bit of whiplash on his end from not being able to make up his mind about dating Lizzie, but when he made up his mind, he stuck to his guns.

The best part of this book was watching Lizzie get her shit together, stepping up and becoming an adult for her younger brothers, despite being only eighteen. Not many people would have done this and Lizzie gets mad respect for stepping up to the plate and committing to taking care of her brothers.

My problems with this book include Lizzie’s lack of grief. I mean, maybe we didn’t really see her process it enough, but at times I felt it was glossed over. There were also a few moments like this (I exaggerate in the pic) but it didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the book:

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Plus, the two brothers weren’t developed very well at all. There’s so much more to that part of the story that wasn’t included. And the ending wrapped up a bit too fast and nice to be realistic but oh well, it is fiction after all.

Overall a very fun new adult book that many will enjoy.

The Deal

The Deal by Elle Kennedy

4.5-5 Wellsy stars!

“The ice looked so shiny and smooth, until you got close enough to it, and suddenly all the uneven edges and crisscrossed skate marks became visible. That’s me, I guess. Covered with skate marks that nobody ever seems to notice.”

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This is one of those books that really does live up to the hype! We’ve all been seeing this book passed around, and normally I’m skeptical when it’s a book everyone loves because most of the time I end up hating it, but not in this case.

The Deal starts out like your typical new adult romance but it’s so much more. There’s a girl at college who has issues, which are said straight away at the beginning (something I actually liked knowing up front so it wasn’t dragged out as a plot point) and a jock who needs tutoring help. Hannah is a music major and one of the few people acing her ethics test. She has a gigantic crush on a football player who doesn’t know she exists. Garrett is the school star hockey player and just failed his midterm, so he needs Hannah’s help.

So many people have done wonderful reviews and there’s no way I could live up to them, so I’m breaking this down into what I loved about the book, because there really isn’t anything I didn’t like about it.

-The banter. There were so many great one liners disbursed throughout this gem. I was reading them out loud to any of my friends who were in my vicinity. Here’s one example:

“Just out of curiosity,” she says, “after you wake up in the morning, do you admire yourself in the mirror for one hour or two?”
“Two,” I reply cheerfully.
“Do you high five yourself?”
“Of course not.” I smirk. “I kiss each of my biceps and then point to the ceiling and thank the big man upstairs for creating such a perfect male specimen.”

-The writing in general. This book flowed beautifully and I read 66% of it in practically a few hours! Had to force myself to go to bed before continuing on. The author had a sense of humor I just connected with.

“If this was a movie, she’d be the young, ambitious teacher who shows up at the inner city school and inspires the fuckups, and suddenly everyone’s putting down their AKs and picking up their pencils, and the end credits scroll up to announce how all the kids got into Harvard or some shit. Instant Oscar for Hilary Swank.”

-The characters. Many have said that Hannah was annoying at first, but I think I have a pretty high tolerance for annoying females because she didn’t bother me at all. Sure she wasn’t into Garrett when she first met him, but this book and this story wouldn’t be what it is if she had. Garrett liked that she wasn’t a puck slut, and he had to fight to get her to even talk to him. The character development between the two of them was extremely well done.

And Garrett, oh Garrett.

Love him! He’s earned a spot among my book boyfriends!!!

**I would have liked more steam and a bit more angst, but I’m a gigantic angst whore and can eat up giant doses and demand more. So for everyone else this is probably the perfect amount of angst.

Thanks Jasmine for the buddy read! I think we both devoured this too quickly to go super in depth but it was lots of fun 🙂

My parting words to you all:

“Penises!
Sweet Jesus.
Penises everywhere.
Horror slams into me as I register what I’m seeing. Oh God. I’ve stumbled onto a penis convention. Big penises and small penises and fat penises and penis-shaped penises. It doesn’t matter which direction I move my head because everywhere I look I see penises.”

You and Everything After

You and Everything After (Falling #2) by Ginger Scott

3.5-4 stars!

“Sometimes, we meet people that set our shit right. And you were like a bullet. You pierced straight…right about here.”

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This was such a sweet book! I wasn’t the biggest fan of the first book in this series, it was a little too cheesy for me. But when I saw that Cass and Ty were getting their own book I HAD to read it, because they were so great in the first book.

Cass has MS (multiple sclerosis) a disease that affects the nervous system and is often unpredictable. College is a fresh start for her, one where she can live without other people knowing about her condition and where she can escape her less than stellar past. Ty was in an accident at the age of sixteen when he became a paraplegic. Ty is the brightest guy in the room, always the life of the party, the one to crack a joke. Behind his facade he has darker feelings, anger, regret longing, but he hides them from everyone else.

Both Cass and Ty meet at a party, and then later discover that Cass has signed up for personal training sessions with Ty at the school gym. The two have immediate chemistry, but both of their pasts have the potential to haunt their future.

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I really enjoyed this gem of a book. It was the perfect amount of sweet without venturing into the cheesy zone. And believe me, I hate cheesy romance. I loved how complex Ty and Cass were as characters, and that this book focused on their personal struggles in addition to the romance between them. The two of them understood each other in a way that most people didn’t get, and it made them the perfect couple.

This book paralleled the first book, This is Falling, so as readers we got to see what Ty and Cass were going through while Rowe and Nate had their drama. One of the best parts of this book for me was seeing Paige through Cass’s eyes. Paige was portrayed as sort of a vapid bitch in the first book, so I like that we got to see another perspective of her and get some reasons behind her actions and choices. She’s not the best sister, and not the best of friends, but she really was trying to do what she thought was best. I’m actually really looking forward to her book.

This is a fun, sweet, New Adult romance that had me smiling through it. I think technically you have to read the first book before this one, but since I didn’t like that one as much, I say skip it. I think the reader could understand what’s going on.

PS: Paige and Cass are from my hometown. Woo!!!

This Girl

This Girl (Slammed #3) by Colleen Hoover

4 Sweet stars!

“I want to be your soulmate, even if I don’t believe in them.”

Short review this time. This Girl begins with Lake and Will on their honeymoon.

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Lake and Will are taking a, um, breather, and Will begins to tell Lake the story of how he met her. Before long it turns into his perspective of their entire story.

It’s been so damn long since I first read Slammed, it was one of the first new adult type books I had ever read and there’s a reason it’s a classic. So reading this book was kind of like reading Slammed all over again, because I didn’t actually remember much about Lake and Will after all this time.

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I loved getting to see Will’s side of things, of his struggle to maintain his integrity while his heart was telling him to do otherwise. The parts of Slammed where he seemed stoic or indifferent were explained. I had never thought of him as a jerk or butthead in the first book, and in this he proved he was a great guy.

“She deserves to be kissed by someone who loves her. Someone who spends every waking moment trying to do everything right by her. Someone who would rather die than see her hurt. She doesn’t deserve to be kissed by anyone other than me.”

There’s really not much more to say, the majority of us know Lake and Will’s story, and for a retelling CoHo did an amazing job. I normally hate the same book/different point of view thing this genre tends to put out, but CoHo mixed it up and included a bunch of new in with the old.

“You want to know my sweet? You. Always you.”

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**small random: reading this made me really want a grilled cheese. I blame Coho for the random food craving**

Sometimes It Lasts

Sometimes It Lasts (Sea Breeze #5) by Abbi Glines

The continuation of Cage and Eva’s story, following on the end of Just For Now. Eva and Cage are happily in love and making plans on starting a new life together in Tennessee, when tragedy strikes. Eva must remain in Alabama, and she makes Cage go off to college to fulfill his dreams without her. Over time, the distance takes its toll, and the two find themselves where they never thought they would be: apart.

This book was a sweet, yet angsty story. I know for many she is a favorite, but Ms. Glines is my choice guilty pleasure author. I normally wouldn’t like a book like this, but something about how it’s written sucks me in and keeps me reading when I normally. Is it the most original plot? No. Do I care? Not a bit. Abbi Glines could recycle the plot for Emma and I would still read it.

In most other reviews I’ve read about this book people have said they found this book unnecessary, and I disagree. Not everyone has a cut and dry happy ending. Life happens, shit happens and we all need to get our act together and pull through it and that’s exactly what happened in this book. The circumstances may seem extreme but most relationships suffer hardship and Cage and Eva were not the exception.

The one thing I did not love about this book was the reconciliation. I feel Cage did a fair amount of groveling, but Eva didn’t. She knew his emotional issues, and she used them against him when she was hurt. And then she never apologized. So I would have liked to see more groveling on her end.

I also think Jeremy deserves his own book if he doesn’t have one already. Asap!

Some of my favorite quotes from the book:

“Because I can’t live without you. However you allow me to have you is what I will take.”

“It’s time we start our always.”