Review: The Upside of Falling Down by Rebekah Crane

The Upside of Falling Down by Rebekah Crane

I love a good amnesia story, and The Upside of Falling Down was a pure delight. Clementine wakes up in a hospital in Ireland after surviving a plane crash, and she cannot remember anything about her life. She doesn’t know what she’s doing in Ireland or why she was on that plane. She panics when she learns her father has arrived from America, and she convinces a nice young Irishman that she’s been mugged and just needs somewhere to stay for a couple of days. This book was packed with wonderfully nice characters. I loved Clementine’s male nurse at the hospital, and of course Kieran, the […]

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Review: Between the Lies by Cathy MacPhail

Between the Lies by Cathy MacPhail

Between the Lies definitely kept me on my toes. In this book a high school student is missing, and no one knows where she is, but another girl receives a text message saying she wants to come home. Thus begins a whirlwind of twists and turns. The narration flips between the outcast girl receiving the mysterious texts and the popular girl who’s gone missing, and I honestly didn’t know who to trust. This book takes place in Ireland, so that was a fun aspect. And it’s a pretty quick read, but in the end it didn’t stand out too much in my mind. I was […]

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Review: Speed of Life by Carol Weston

Speed of Life by Carol Weston

Speed of Life in a coming of age middle grade book aimed at readers on the older end of that genre. Sofia’s mother died a year ago, and she has a lot of questions for a woman. She starts reaching out to Dear Kate after a school assembly, and she find her extremely helpful. But when Sofia’s dad’s new girlfriend turns out to be the real life Kate, things get a little tricky. This book is very character driven. The focus is on Sofia of course, but we also learn a lot about her parents, Kate and her daughter, and Sofia’s best friend. The story follows […]

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Book Round Up: Compelling Reads

Compelling Reads

Last summer I wrote a column in Country Woman magazine on books you won’t be able to put down. Today I am sharing those three books along with other compelling reads.   The Things We Wish Were True by Marybeth Mayhew Whalen With neighborhood drama, multiple characters/perspectives, and many secrets, this book is the perfect recipe for a domestic suspense novel. I couldn’t put it down. 4 Stars   Always by Sarah Jio The main character sees her old boyfriend homeless outside of a restaurant one night while out with her fiancé. It’s only natural that she becomes a little obsessed and determined to help […]

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Review: The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay

The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay

I was so excited to read The Austen Escape because I loved Katherine Reay’s earlier Austen-related novels, but unfortunately this book did not live up to my expectations. It’s been a couple of months since I read this book (since I’ve been slacking on blogging), so rather than a traditional review, I am going to share the things I liked and disliked about this novel. What I liked about this book The Austen stuff, obviously. I enjoy Reay as an author because she writes Austen-spinoffs. That’s what attracted me to this book, and I really enjoyed Mary and Isabel’s foray into an Austen-like world.  However, I […]

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Review: One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

One of Us Is Lying is supposed to be like The Breakfast Club but with a twist. Five students enter detention, but only four survive. Simon, the writer of a school gossip blog, dies from anaphylactic shock after drinking a cup of water during detention. Simon was allergic to peanuts, but his epi-pens and those from the nurses office were all missing. All of the students were there by mistake. Someone planted phones in their backpacks, so their strict teacher would catch them and give them detention. They all had secrets that were meant to be revealed on Simon’s blog the next day. The four other […]

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Review: The Book of Polly by Kathy Hepinstall

The Book of Polly by Kathy Hepinstall

The Book of Polly is an adult novel that centers around Willow Havens, a ten year-old girl, who is obsessed with the idea of her mother’s death. Polly was quite old when Willow was born, so it’s logical that Willow would be concerned. This book is very much about character development. Polly is quite a character – she kills squirrels in her backyard and has confrontations with her neighbors and people at Willow’s school. Willow is trying to discover who she is and find assurance that someone will care for her once her mother is gone. I enjoyed this sweet, quirky story, but it wasn’t […]

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Review: Little Monsters by Kara Thomas

Little Monsters by Kara Thomas

Little Monsters is a pretty twisted story. Kacey’s friends Jade and Bailey begin freezing her out after an incident at a supposedly haunted barn, and she’s not quite sure why. They go to a party without her, but then she can’t even really confront they about it because Bailey doesn’t come home the night of the party. Jade does reach out to Kacey to help determine what happened to Bailey, but suddenly Kacey’s step-brother is a suspect and things get a little out of hand. This book was disturbing to say the least. I thought I’d read great reviews, so I recommended it to my […]

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Review: The Boy on the Bridge by M.R. Carey

The Boy on the Bridge (The Hungry Plague #2) by M.R. Carey

The Boy on the Bridge is technically a sequel to The Girl with All the Gifts, but I think it should really have been advertised as a companion novel or a prequel. Before Melanie and the other kids were being studied, another team of scientists was trying to learn more about the zombie-inducing fungus that’s plagued the human world. This book centers around a young man, Steven Grieves, who’s an unwanted member of the team aboard Rosie, a vehicle of scientific-discover. Steven is on the autism spectrum, and he’s crazy smart. He makes many discoveries that help the human race tremendously. There are a lot of […]

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Review: There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

There’s Someone Inside Your House in a YA horror novel. I don’t usually do horror, but this book was compared to the movie Scream, so I thought I could handle it. It’s really addictive, and definitely not too scary. I’d say it’s more suspenseful, while quite gory, but I really, really enjoyed it. The book centers around Makani, who’s new to the town and high school. Her parents shipped her from Hawaii to Nebraska, so they could deal with their divorce without her getting in the way. In short, her parents really suck, but thankfully her grandmother is awesome, despite her sleep-walking habit. Makani falls for […]

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