HAPPILY EVER AFTER: KIERA CASS REVIEW

Today we’re going to be discussing Happily Ever After, a bind up of several novellas that are tied to the Selection series. I’ve been a huge fan of these books for several years now, and I finally got around to reading this collection of stories. I really enjoyed this, and I’m going to share my thoughts on all of the books in this novellas.

Meet Prince Maxon before he fell in love with America, and a girl named Amberly before she became queen. See the Selection through the eyes of a guard who watched his first love drift away and a girl who fell for a boy who wasn’t the prince. This gorgeous collection features four novellas from the captivating world of Kiera Cass’s #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series, as well as exclusive, never-before-seen bonus content.

RATING: 4/5 STARS

The Prince

This one was my almost  favorite novella, but it was beat out by a baby sliver. We got a chance to see Maxon before and up to the selection, and it was fantastic to see the initial parts of the selection from his perspective. I’ve always really loved Maxon, and seeing some parts from his perspective was great.

The Guard

In this one, we got to see what was going on in Aspen’s head while he was a guard in the castle. During the series, I’ve never been a huge fan of him, but this book made me look at him a little differently. Sometimes seeing the opposite perspective gives the reader a chance to appreciate a character a little more, and I definitely got that vibe with this one. We also got a little glimpse at the guard’s own happily ever after too, and it was so cute!

The Queen

Amberly was one of my favorite people in the initial Selection novels. She was always such a great outlet and person, and I really adored her from the first chance we met her. I had always wondered how she ended up with the king, and seeing their selection process gave me a much better idea as to why she was in love with him and put up with him.

The Favorite

I LOVED THIS SO MUCH. During the Selection series, I always loved Marlee. Getting to see this from her perspective was fantastic, and seeing all of Maxon’s behind the scenes helping moments was so great. Marlee and her sweet guard were so dang cute, and seeing their story develop made me so happy. This was definitely the strongest out of all the novellas, and if you read any of these, this is the one I would go to first.

Overall, this companion novel was such a fun read! I loved getting to return to the original Selection characters, and this little bind up has several great additional features, and I think that it’s worth the read if you’ve read the series. If you’ve read this book, which novella was your favorite?

Happy Reading!

Taylor

BLACKHEARTS: NICOLE CASTROMAN REVIEW

Hey lovelies! Today we’re going to be discussing Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman, a book that gives us a glimpse into the young life of Blackbeard. This one was an interesting read, so let’s get into discussion time.

Blackbeard the pirate was known for striking fear in the hearts of the bravest of sailors. But once he was just a young man who dreamed of leaving his rigid life behind to chase adventure in faraway lands. Nothing could stop him—until he met the one girl who would change everything.

Edward “Teach” Drummond, son of one of Bristol’s richest merchants, has just returned from a year-long journey on the high seas to find his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, Teach dreams only of returning to the vast ocean he’d begun to call home. There’s just one problem: convincing his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following her parents’ deaths, Anne Barrett is left penniless and soon to be homeless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne is forced to take a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks, and Anne longs for escape. How will she ever realize her dream of sailing to Curaçao—where her mother was born—when she’s stuck in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn to each other, they’re trapped by society and their own circumstances. Faced with an impossible choice, they must decide to chase their dreams and go, or follow their hearts and stay.

 RATING: 3/5 STARS

This book was such a fun read! In this one, we get the story of Blackbeard, before he was the terrifying pirate. This book takes place in his  childhood home, where he is betrothed and completely miserable. Along comes Anne, a maid, and then from there the story takes off.

Anne was a pretty okay character. At times, she kind of drove me crazy, but she was a strong, and she was definitely different from other characters I’ve read. I really really liked Teach! I don’t know a lot about Blackbeard, but he definitely wanted to make me learn more. He was clever and sweet, and he made me like Anne a lot more than I would’ve without  him. He was also really motivated, and he was willing to shake things up to get what he wants. As a couple they were very instalovey. It starts out as some sassy comments back and forth and then it seemed like a chapter later they were in love.

As a whole, the book wasn’t super action packed, but it definitely flowed nicely and it set up an interesting world. I think that my favorite part of this book was the end.  It ended on a cliffhanger, and the last fifty pages were really fast paced and excited. There wasn’t much pirating going on in this book, but I have high hopes that the next book will be filled with pirating adventures. Overall, Blackheart was a unique book, and I thought that it was a fun read! If you’ve read this one, what did you think? I’d love to discuss it with you!

Happy Reading!

Taylor

LOSING IT: CORA CARMACK REVIEW

Today I am going to be doing another new adult review! I know that that has been all I’ve really reviewed lately, but they’re perfect for a busy college student, and to be honest I just love them.

Author: Cora Carmack

Publisher: William Morrow & Company

Pages: 304

Genre: New Adult

Rating: 4/5

Mackenzie “Max” Miller has a problem. Her parents have arrived in town for a surprise visit, and if they see her dyed hair, tattoos, and piercings, they just might disown her. Even worse, they’re expecting to meet a nice, wholesome boyfriend, not a guy named Mace who has a neck tattoo and plays in a band. All her lies are about to come crashing down around her, but then she meets Cade.

Cade moved to Philadelphia to act and to leave his problems behind in Texas. So far though, he’s kept the problems and had very little opportunity to take the stage. When Max approaches him in a coffee shop with a crazy request to pretend to be her boyfriend, he agrees to play the part. But when Cade plays the role a little too well, they’re forced to keep the ruse going. And the more they fake the relationship, the more real it begins to feel.

This is my second Cora Carmack book, and it was so much fun! This is the second book in the Losing It series, and they are writing in typical new adult, companion novel style. When I heard the premise of this one, I knew I had to pick it up and give it a chance, and I’m so glad I did!

Cade and Max, aka Mackenzie (although calling her that will get you laid out before you can even get out the last syllable), were such a fun duo to read about! Let’s start with Cade. I enjoyed learning about his backstory with Bliss a little, and seeing him go through this period where he realized that she truly wasn’t the right girl was such a good journey. I loved the way he treated Max, and ‘Golden Boy’ surely didn’t disappoint in the swoon department. Watching him banter with Max, and seeing him really work to learn as much about her as humanly possible was so great, especially after meeting her real man, Mace, who was a total jerkbag throughout. Now lets talk about Max. I have discovered that sassy main characters are my favorite. She has this vulnerable side as well though, and I loved seeing Cade help her work through some of the things she struggles with. Together, they made a couple that I totally approve of without a shadow of a doubt.

The plot of this book, and the idea of a ‘fake boyfriend’ was so hilarious. Max and Cade meet in a coffee shop and they interact in a spontaneous decision when Max’s parents decide to show up unexpected. Seeing them banter and go from a fake couple to a level at which the lines begin to blur was so fun, and really well done. Overall, if you’re looking for a entertaining, new adult book that packs a little punch, then Faking It should be added to your TBR list immediately!

Happy Reading!

Taylor

CITY LOVE: SUSAN COLASANTI REVIEW

A special thanks to Katherine Tegen books for sending me an electronic version of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Author: Susan Colasanti 

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Pages: 336

Genre: YA Contemporary 

Rating: 3/5

Sadie, Darcy, and Rosanna are living together in New York City the summer before their freshman year of college begins. With no parents, no rules, and an entire city to explore, these three girls are on the verge of the best summer of their lives.

Sadie is a native New Yorker. She is hopeful, romantic, and an eternal optimist who is ready to find her soul mate. Then she meets her dream boy: cute, funny, and quirky in all the right ways. The chemistry between them is unreal. Could he be the one?

Darcy is a free spirit from SoCal with rebellious tendencies and unlimited financial resources. Moving to New York City is just another adventure for her. Darcy wants this summer to be all about boy adventures—nothing serious. But how much fun is too much?

Rosanna leaves Chicago for NYC so she can put her past behind her and reinvent herself. The only thing standing in her way is the grand total of seventy-three cents she has saved. Then she meets a guy who wants to show her the glamorous side of New York—a side that she would never get to experience on her own. If Rosanna doesn’t resist, she may find herself in city love.

Told from alternating points of view, City Love captures the moments in each girl’s life when everything is thrilling, amazing, and terrifying all at once . . . in a way it will never be again.

Let me just start off by giving you guys my overall thoughts. This book was pretty good, and I enjoyed the way each chapter was told from a different girls perspective. It was really interesting, and I liked hearing each girls stream of consciousness. Also, three girls equals three various love stories!

The main reason this book didn’t receive a higher rating from me was because I found it pretty cut and dry, especially in the beginning. The characters seemed to all fit a certain cookie cutter, and although there was character development, I found some characters slightly frustrating and annoying.

Now I’m going to tell you what I liked about this book! At the end, each girls love story had a big plot twist, which is the main reason I will be picking up the sequel when it’s released. I also really liked the three love interests. Even though some of them have a good amount of baggage, they were very likable, and I definitely understand the reason the girls fell for them. 

Now I’m going to discuss each individual girls story line a little. My least favorite was Sadie’s. The insta-love was plentiful in this story, but it’s the one I’m the most anxious to see the end of. Sadie was super upbeat and happy, and extra anxious to fall in love, which ended up getting her into trouble. Then we have Rosanna, who I loved! She was extra relatable personality wise, and although I can’t relate to her circumstances, seeing her develop as a character was fantastic. Character development was also very well done with Darcy and I’m really excited to see what path she decides to take!

Let me know in the comments below if you plan on picking this one up, and if you have, what did you think?

Taylor