24 February 2015

Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas

Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas
Series: No
Publisher: Simon and Schuster UK
Publication Date: August 14th 2014
Source: Bought

Three teens venture into the abandoned Monroe estate one night; hours later, only two emerge from the burning wreckage. Chloe drags one Reznick brother to safety, unconscious and bleeding; the other is left to burn, dead in the fire. But which brother survives? And is his death a tragic accident? Desperate self-defense? Or murder?

Chloe is the only one with the answers. As the fire rages, and police and parents demand the truth, she struggles to piece together the story of how they got there-a story of jealousy, twisted passion, and the darkness that lurks behind even the most beautiful of faces…

As soon as I finished reading Dangerous Girls I had to pick up Dangerous Boys. I was dying to see what Haas had in store for me next!

While Dangerous Boys didn't live up to Dangerous Girls, it was still a heart-pounding, thrilling read. 

Dangerous Boys begins with another 911 emergency call. This time three teens are trapped in a burning building and only two emerge while the other is left to die in the fire. 

Chloe's life is falling apart and she can't wait to finish school and be able to finally leave her hometown and escape. And then she meets Ethan and their friendship begins to blossom, developing into something romantic. And then Oliver (Ethan's brother) makes an appearance and Chloe's life is turned upside down.

Chloe was a fantastic main character, I completely understood why she wanted to get out and make a life for herself. Ethan was such a sweet character. He wanted to make Chloe happy and he was just so adorable. And then we have Oliver. Oliver is such a dark and intriguing character, and I couldn't help my attraction to him. He's just such a compelling character.

Dangerous Boys is a much darker read. It's so twisted and screwed up, but you just can't put it down. You have to keep reading. It was so thrilling and I had to know what was going to happen. Haas just has such a fantastic writing style that keeps you reading even when you're extremely creeped out and not sure whether you want to keep reading, you just have to. 

I don't want to say much else about Dangerous Boys because it's book you have to read to understand. There's so much that goes on and it's just so addictive.

Overall, Dangerous Boys was a dark and twisted read that I couldn't put down no matter how much it creeped me out. It was addictive and I loved every minute of it.

23 February 2015

Better Than Perfect by Melissa Kantor

Better Than Perfect by Melissa Kantor
Series: No
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: February 17th 2015
Source: HarperTeen [Edelweiss]

Juliet Newman has it all. A picture-perfect family; a handsome, loving boyfriend; and a foolproof life plan: ace her SATs, get accepted into Harvard early decision, and live happily ever after.

But when her dad moves out and her mom loses it, Juliet begins questioning the rules she’s always lived by. And to make everything even more complicated there’s Declan, the gorgeous boy who makes her feel alive and spontaneous—and who’s totally off-limits. Torn between the life she always thought she wanted and one she never knew was possible, Juliet begins to wonder: What if perfect isn't all it’s cracked up to be?

Better Than Perfect follows a girl who has a perfect life. But after dad leaves and her mum spirals into depression and eventually ends up in hospital, she begins to realise that her perfect life may not have been as perfect as she thought. Everything in her life becomes complicated, and she begins to realise that being perfect isn't the most important thing in the world - having fun and enjoying herself is.

Juliet was a fantastic main character. She was so comfortable in her perfect life that when everything starts to fall apart, she doesn't know what to do. She's been putting on this perfect front for so long that she doesn't really know who she is or what she really wants to do. Juliet's life falling apart was probably the best thing that could have happened. If it hadn't, she would have followed the path she was on and she would have had to keep pretending. But Juliet started to discover herself and find things that she actually loved doing. She became more adventurous and outgoing, and actually started to enjoy herself.

I really didn't get why Juliet was with Jason. He was actually pretty controlling and wanted everything to follow his perfect plan. He had his and Juliet's life completely planned out and went a bit crazy whenever Juliet deviated from his plan. I don't think she realised how controlling he was because she was so focused on keeping her perfect life and Jason was part of that. But I just really didn't like him. As soon as he started getting crazy jealous over her knowing guys that weren't him I lost all interest in their relationship.

Declan on the other hand was one of the sweetest guys ever. I felt bad for him because Juliet was slightly leading him on and hadn't mentioned that she had a boyfriend. Throughout the whole book you can see she clearly has strong feelings for him, but she doesn't want to mess up her life anymore, which was a shame since they were really good together.

Juliet started to grow close to her father again after everything that happened with her mother. It turns out that her father and brother had been protecting her from how bad her mothers problem was and it had apparently been going on for years. So obviously Juliet wasn't happy about being kept in the dark, but she eventually began to repair her relationship with her father and grew close to her brother again.

 I loved seeing Juliet discover herself and actually have fun for once. She's experimenting and hanging around with her new friends more instead of locking herself away and studying. Obviously Jason didn't like this because of his perfect plan, but it was so nice to see Juliet realising what was important in life.

The ending was fantastic and left me with a huge grin on my face. It was such a perfect ending.

Overall, Better Than Perfect was a brilliant read. It focused on a character discovering herself and finding out what's really important in life. It had a fantastic message and a brilliant romance, I really enjoyed it.

22 February 2015

BLOG TOUR: Rebound by Noelle August & GIVEAWAY

Rebound by Noelle August
Series: Boomerang #2
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Publication Date: February 10th 2015
Source: William Morrow Paperbacks [Edelweiss]
Links: Amazon US; Amazon UK; Book Depository

Adam Blackwood has it all. At twenty-two, he’s fabulously wealthy, Ryan Gosling-hot and at the top of the heap in the business world. His life is perfect, until a scandal from his past resurfaces and knocks the tech wunderkind down, throwing his company, Boomerang, a hook-up site for millennials, into chaos.

Three years ago, Adam married his high school love—and then lost her in a tragic accident. Now, the heartbreak and guilt he’s tried to bury with work and women begins to take over his life.

Alison Quick, the twenty-one-year-old daughter of a business tycoon—and the very ex-girlfriend of Boomerang’s former intern, Ethan—has a problem of her own. She’s got one chance to prove to her father that she deserves a place in his empire by grabbing control of Boomerang and taking Adam down.

But as Alison moves in on him, armed with a cadre of lawyers and accountants, she discovers there’s much more to Adam and Boomerang than meets the eye. Will earning her father’s approval come at the price of losing her first real love? It appears so, unless Adam can forgive her for wrecking his life and trying to steal his livelihood. But Alison hopes that old adage is right. Maybe love can conquer all.

Boomerang was such a fun and sweet book that I really enjoyed, so obviously I was super excited for Rebound when I heard about it. I was slightly apprehensive about the characters since I disliked Alison in Boomerang, but I was still intrigued to find out her side of the story and also find out more about Adam. 

So from Boomerang, we knew that Alison had cheated on Ethan but we didn't get to know much else about her or hear her side. So getting to hear from Alison and find out what went on with her was very interesting. I'm in no way condoning Alison cheating on Ethan, but she had her reasons and a lot of stuff going on in her life that had messed up her view of love. Her father was a complete dick. He was a controlling asshole and he basically condoned cheating and didn't particularly care. Alison really regrets what she did to Ethan and she always will. Alison is a very strong and determined character. She pushes herself to get praise from her father because he never seems to be happy with her. She's also quite vulnerable and scared sometimes. She just wants his approval.

Adam is an extremely mysterious character. We don't know much about him from Boomerang, and it takes him a while to open up in Rebound. Adam lost the girl he loved in a tragic accident, and he doesn't talk about it. Ever. He's harboring guilt over the accident which is why he never brings it up. I loved Adam. He could be a bit of a dick sometimes, but it's because of his guilt over the accident. He doesn't want anyone to know about it. But he's such an intriguing character and I loved seeing him open up.

Adam and Alison had some serious chemistry from the word go. They met at a costume party dressed as Catwoman and Zorro, and obviously things got a bit heated. I loved the two of them together from that moment. But both Adam and Alison had a lot to work through, and their business relationship also made things slightly more complicated. But the chemistry between these two practically sizzled off the page.

I loved everything about Rebound. It was a lot more complicated than Boomerang because Alison is the daughter of the guy buying into Boomerang and he wanted Alison to get all of Adam's secrets so he could use them against him. But Alison never wanted to do it and was always trying to find a way to stall her father - which was hard because he's extremely overbearing. I also really loved the relationship that grew between Alison and Mia (and the fact that Mia and Ethan made more than one appearance!). But the best thing about the book was anytime Adam and Alison were together. I just adored the interactions between the two of them and they helped each other a lot.

The ending was fantastic and I wanted to applaud Alison's mother for being amazing and standing up for herself. And also Alison because she was equally amazing. It was such a brilliant ending and I completely adored it.

Overall, Rebound was amazing! I loved it even more than Boomerang and it just completely blew me away. I can't wait for book 3 - Bounce - because it's about Adam's brother Grey! Grey has a lot going on and I think his book will be slightly darker, but I can't wait for it!

About the Author
Question: What do you get when friends pen a story with heart, plenty of laughs, and toe-curling kissing scenes? Answer: Noelle August, the pseudonym for renowned editor and award-winning writer Lorin Oberweger and New York Times bestselling YA author Veronica Rossi, the masterminds behind the Boomerang series. 
You can visit them at NoelleAugust.com and @Noelle_August on Twitter and facebook.com/NoelleAugustBooks.

Showcase Sunday #95

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea. This meme allows book bloggers to show off the books they collected over the last week!

Hi everyone! This week has been a super, super busy week for me. I've hardly been in the house and when I have, I just haven't had any energy to do anything. So next week I refuse to leave the house except to go to work. I want to have a nice, quiet, relaxing week because I'm absolutely shattered.
I went to an author event this week in my local library. Mason Cross (the author of The Killing Season) was doing a talk about his second book The Samaritan. I keep meaning to get around to starting his books and after his excerpt from The Samaritan, I think I'll be reading them soon!

Bookwise, this week I've only got two books to show you guys. One of my kindle pre-orders was released this week and I also got a book from Netgalley! Both of which I devoured as soon as I got them.

The Return (Titan #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

All That Glitters (Geek Girl #4) by Holly Smale

What books did you get this week?

16 February 2015

Just One Day & Just One Night by Gayle Forman

Just One Day by Gayle Forman
Series: Just One Day #1
Publisher: Speak
Publication Date: August 20th 2013
Source: Bought

Allyson Healey's life is exactly like her suitcase - packed, planned, ordered. Then on the last day of her three-week post-graduation European tour, she meets Willem. A free-spirited, roving actor, Willem is everything she's not, and when he invites her to abandon her plans and come to Paris with him, Allyson says yes. This uncharacteristic decision leads to a day of risk and romance, liberation and intimacy; twenty-four hours that will transform Allyson's life.

A book about love, heartbreak, travel, identity and the "accidents" of fate, Just One Day shows us how sometimes in order to get found, you first have to get lost... and how often the people we are seeking are much closer than we know.

Just One Day has been sitting on my bookcase for over a year now and I always meant to get to it sooner since everyone seemed to love it. So when I was in the mood for a contemporary last week I finally decided to pick this one up.

Just One Day follows our main character Allyson who completely plans her life. She's organised and doesn't enjoy doing things outside of her comfort zone. On the last day of her post-graduation Europe tour, she meets a guy called Willem. Willem loves travelling and hates to have something tying him to one place - he wants to explore. Willem invites Allyson to spend a day with him in Paris, and she surprises herself by saying yes.

As soon as I started reading Just One Day, I fell in love with it. Allyson and Willem were fantastic characters, and they were so different. Allyson is extremely organised and never does anything out of character. She feels like she has to please her parents and be a specific kind of person for them to be proud of her. Willem is a free spirit. He likes to leave everything down to chance and fate and spend his time discovering the world.

Just One Day followed Allyson and Willem's twenty-four hour trip to Paris and the changes that Allyson went through after. I adored the Paris setting. I've never been to Paris, but it's always been one of the top 5 cities that I desperately want to visit. I could visualize everything and reading about Willem and Allyson exploring Paris made me want to go even more. I wanted to try macarons and pick a random tube station and just go with the flow. It was such a fantastic way to discover Paris. After the Paris trip, Allyson begins to notice a change in herself. She misses the person she was in Paris and she's determined to get that feeling back. She tries her hardest to please her parents, but she begins to realise that making herself happy is more important than making her parents happy. 

The romance in Just One Day did escalate very quickly during their day in Paris, but they were both caught up in the moment and wanted to enjoy themselves. Throughout the rest of the book, there was a huge amount of time for both characters feelings to develop and for them to work out how they felt about each other.

The ending of Just One Day left me desperate to know what was going to happen between Willem and Allyson, so obviously I started reading Just One Night straight away. I was slightly disappointed with Just One Night. It had a completely different feel to it and didn't really flow that well considering there were so many other characters being spoken about as well (that I really didn't care about). I got to see what happened with Willem and Allyson, but Just One Night was a bit of a let down.

Overall, Just One Day is an adorable contemporary about love, travel and self-discovery. I loved every minute of it and would highly recommend it. Just One Night, however, was a bit of a disappointment, but I'm glad I know how everything worked out in the end. I can't wait to get around to reading Just One Year and see Willem's side of the story.

15 February 2015

Showcase Sunday #94

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea. This meme allows book bloggers to show off the books they collected over the last week!

Hello everyone! I apologise for being pretty absent this week comments wise, but my internet has been down for just over a week and it's been hell. It was only connecting for about 10 minutes at a time for an hour, and then it'd completely disappear. But, thankfully it's working now so I'll be spending next week visiting blogs and catching up on commenting!

Bookwise, I've only got a couple of books to show you guys. I'm doing quite well with my book buying this year (so far) and since I'm saving up for my holiday to Rome in May, I definitely can't spend all of my money on books. So I have two physical books, a kindle book, a review book from Netgalley and a sneak peek from Netgalley.

• physical
The Ruby Circle (Bloodlines #6) by Richelle Mead
Talon (Talon #1) by Julie Kagawa
Both bought from Waterstones. I managed to get The Ruby Circle for about £1.70 because I used all of the points on my Waterstones Card and Talon was an impulse buy - that I've already read - because my sister is getting me book 2 for my Birthday so I had to have a physical copy (also, it's just so pretty).

Doon (Doon #1) by Carey Corp & Lorie Langdon
This one was only £0.99 on amazon and I couldn't resist. I've been wanting to read it for ages!

Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
Saint Anything (SNEAK) by Sarah Dessen
I was surprised to get an email saying I'd already been approved for Every Last Word, but it sounds fantastic so I can't wait to read it. I couldn't resist the sneak peek of Saint Anything. I adore Sarah Dessen's books and I'm really excited for this one. Thanks to Disney Hyperion & Penguin!

What books did you get this week?

13 February 2015

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen #1
Publisher: Orion
Publication Date: February 12th 2015
Source: Orion [Netgalley]

This is a world divided by blood - red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare's potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance - Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart...

The closer it got to the release date of Red Queen, the more fantastic reviews I saw. I  was saving this one for closer to it's release date - since I had tons of other review books to read - but trying to resist picking it up a lot sooner was extremely hard. Red Queen was a fantastic read. As soon as I picked it up I was hooked. I didn't want to put it down and kept trying to find half an hour to fit in another chapter or two during my busy week - I couldn't get enough!

Red Queen takes place in a dystopian fantasy world that is divided by blood. The Reds are commoners. The work hard and are very poor. They're ruled by the Silvers who are like royalty and have powers. Seventeen year old Red girl Mare Barrow is doing everything she can to help her family. Her older brothers have all been shipped off to war and on her eighteenth birthday, Mare will be next. One night when pick-pocketing, Mare comes across a strange and intriguing guy who helps her. The next morning she's taken to work at the Silver palace and discovers that the guy who helped her is Prince Cal, the heir to the throne. An accident at the palace causes Mare - and everyone else - to realise that she's special. Mare may be a Red, but she has a Silver power. The Silvers hide Mare in the spotlight and she's instantly betrothed to Prince Maven. Mare soon finds herself part of a resistance group working to bring down the Silver regime. Mare is playing a dangerous game and she must try to figure out who she can truly trust.

I completely adored Red Queen. I didn't have a lot of spare time when I picked it up, but I found myself bringing my kindle with me everywhere trying to squeeze in a couple of minutes of reading or a chapter or two - it was just so good!

Mare was a brilliant main character. I admired how much she wanted to protect her family. She stole for them and wanted to make sure they were comfortable before she was conscripted. Mare could be a strong, determined, powerful and fierce character, but she also had moments of weakness and naivety which made me love her more. She follows her heart a lot which gets her into quite a bit of trouble.

While there were three sort of love interests, I only really cared about two - the two Princes Cal and Maven. Cal and Maven are completely opposites - Cal is more outgoing, determined to prove himself while Maven is a lot softer and more caring. But all is not as it appears with the Princes, there's a lot more to them both. Kilorn - Mare's old friend from her village - was love interest number 3, but in all honesty, I don't think he stands a chance with her. Not one bit. He's more of a friend to Mare, but he seems to have more romantic feelings towards her which I don't really think Mare will reciprocate (I really hope not).

The story line was fantastic! I loved finding out about both the Silvers and the Reds and the world they live in. I was completely fascinated by it. I loved Mare's involvement in the resistance group. She's determined to bring down the Silvers and save her people, but she also starts to form relationships with some of the Reds and realises that not all of them are terrible. But she does what she has to do for her people. I adored seeing Mare train with her power - she was a complete bad ass with all that electricity - and seeing some of the different powers that other Silvers have was also extremely fascinating.

The main thing I adored about this book was the ending. The twist! I may have had to re-read a certain scene over and over again around 5 times because I just couldn't believe it and I was extremely heartbroken! I may have teared up slightly because I really wasn't expecting that and I'd became extremely invested in something that completely broke apart when the twist happened. It was definitely a killer twist, but it let to even more awesomeness right at the end of the book. A big face off at the end full of Silver's and Mare fighting and showing off their fantastic powers again - I need more fight scenes because they're awesome! I need book 2 after that ending because I'm dying to know what's going to happen next!

Overall, Red Queen was a fantastic debut novel full of twists, surprises, betrayal and some of the most awesome fight scenes you'll ever read. It completely lives up to all of the hype and the wait for the second book will be a hard one. 

11 February 2015

Waiting on Wednesday #105

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by breaking the spine, that spotlights upcoming
releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord
Series: No
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Publication Date: March 31st 2015

It’s been a year since it happened—when Paige Hancock’s first boyfriend died in an accident.

After shutting out the world for two years, Paige is finally ready for a second chance at high school... and she has a plan. First: Get her old crush, Ryan Chase, to date her—the perfect way to convince everyone she’s back to normal. Next: Join a club—simple, it’s high school after all. But when Ryan’s sweet, nerdy cousin, Max, moves to town and recruits Paige for the Quiz Bowl team (of all things!) her perfect plan is thrown for a serious loop. Will Paige be able to face her fears and finally open herself up to the life she was meant to live?

I've been dying to get my hands on this one ever since I finished Open Road Summer. Emery Lord's debut was so amazing that I just couldn't wait to read her next book/anything else she ever writes. So March 31st better hurry up, I need this one!

What are you waiting on this week?

10 February 2015

Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas

Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
Series: No
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
Publication Date: August 1st 2013
Source: Bought

Elise is dead.
And someone must pay.

Anna, her boyfriend Tate, best friend Elise and a group of close friends set off on a debaucherous Spring Break trip to Aruba. But paradise soon turns into a living nightmare when Elise is brutally murdered.

Soon Anna finds herself trapped in a foreign country and fighting for her freedom. As she awaits the judge's decree, it becomes clear that everyone is questioning her innocence. To the rest of the world, Anna isn't just guilty, but dangerous. As the court case unfolds the truth is about to come out, and it's more shocking than you could ever imagine...

Dangerous Girls has been sitting on my bookcase for well over a year now. I kept meaning to get around to it, but other books/things kept getting in the way. So when I was looking for something to read the other night, I went straight for this one. I can't believe I waited so long to read Dangerous Girls, it was fantastic!

Dangerous Girls follows a group of friends who head off to Aruba for Spring Break. But one of the friends - Elise - is brutally murdered, and the group are the main suspects. Anna finds herself the prime suspect in the investigation and it seems like everyone has already decided she's guilty. But as the court case begins, the secrets and lies revealed have you questioning what happened and who actually did it.

I was hooked the second I picked up Dangerous Girls. The phone call to the police at the beginning reporting Elise's murder completely sucked me in. I was dying to know what had happened to Elise, find out more about her to see why someone would kill her. Dangerous Girls flicks between before Aruba, Aruba and after Elise's death. We find out the relationship between the characters and try to figure out if any of them could possibly have killed her. This book is intense, and I mean really intense. Throughout the whole book I was on edge. I had no idea who killed Elise, and the trial was completely focused on pinning it on Anna. It was a psychological thriller. I was constantly questioning all of the characters, wondering whether they were lying to cover their own asses, or lying to cover someone else's. 

I felt so bad for Anna the whole way through her trial. The detective seemed to have it in for her and was doing everything he could to make her look guilty. Anna couldn't even grieve properly for her friend because she had to stay strong and together for her trial or everything could fall apart. The lengths the detective went to to pin the murder on Anna was unbelievable. He was unstoppable. Nothing could deter him from putting Anna behind bars. All of Anna's friends eventually abandoned her, so she was all alone in a foreign country and had a detective gunning for her arrest - it was hard not to feel extremely bad for her. Especially since she's only in that position because she covered for her boyfriend Tate and he sold her out. 

The crazy twists, lies and extreme cover ups that went on in Anna's trial were jaw dropping. I couldn't believe half of the stuff that was being thrown at Anna, and the fact that people were blatantly lying on the witness stand was shocking. The detective went to any lengths necessary to make sure Anna wouldn't see the outside of a prison for a long time. He was obsessed. The trial was so messed up.

That ending. THAT. ENDING. Holy shit, that ending. It left me speechless. Abigail Haas deserves a round of applause for that ending, because wow. I'm still in shock after finishing the book because that ending was amazing! 

Overall, Dangerous Girls was a dark, psychological thriller full of twists, lies and cover-ups that left me speechless. It kept me on my toes the whole way through, constantly questioning the characters and trying to work out who did it. It's probably the best psychological thriller/murder mystery that I've ever read, it was fantastic. If you haven't read Dangerous Girls yet, please do. You won't be disappointed.

9 February 2015

The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand
Series: No
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: February 10th 2015
Source: HarperTeen [Edelweiss]

There's death all around us.
We just don't pay attention.
Until we do.

The last time Lex was happy, it was before. When she had a family that was whole. A boyfriend she loved. Friends who didn't look at her like she might break down at any moment.

Now she's just the girl whose brother killed himself. And it feels like that's all she'll ever be.

As Lex starts to put her life back together, she tries to block out what happened the night Tyler died. But there's a secret she hasn't told anyone-a text Tyler sent, that could have changed everything.

Lex's brother is gone. But Lex is about to discover that a ghost doesn't have to be real to keep you from moving on.

Cynthia Hand became one of my favourite authors when I read her Unearthly series. So when I heard she had a new book coming out, I desperately wanted to read it. I was approved for a copy on Edelweiss so I instantly downloaded it, and then I read the synopsis. The subject matter of The Last Time We Say Goodbye is something I have a hard time reading about now after a personal matter last year, but I decided to push through and read it, and I'm so glad I did. The Last Time We Say Goodbye may have brought back some fears, but it was such a beautifully written story and I found myself able to really relate to Lex.

Lex was a very realistc and relatable character. She carries around a lot of guilt because she feels like she's somehow responsible for a part of her brothers suicide because her brother text her that night and she ignored him. Lex is struggling. She's isolating herself, not going out with her friends anymore and she's closed off her emotions. She can't deal with Tyler's death until she works on her own issues and is finally read to accept what happened. 

I'm not going to go into detail about my personal experience - but I will say we were lucky and able to get the person involved medical help before it was too late. But, because of this experience, I completely understood Lex's guilt. Honestly, I still feel guilty almost a year later. I went through the exact same things Lex did: wishing I could have been there more and wishing I'd taken a bit more notice. But it's so hard to notice something when the other person hides it so well and you genuinely feel like they're happy. Lex is struggling with the guilt she feels; with the fact that her brother is gone; with her relationship with her father; with her anger towards her brother and she's also struggling because her mother is struggling. 

There were so many things I loved about The Last Time We Say Goodbye. I loved that Lex began to connect with her old best friend Sadie, and that they were both able to each other eventually. Both of them have lost someone in their family, and as sad as that is, it brought them both back together again. Sadie was exactly what Lex needed and I'm so glad they came back into each other's lives when they did. Lex made it a point to take notice of the people around her after her brothers death. She begins to talk to other people around her, and she begins to take notice of one of Ty's old friends that she hasn't spoken to in years. But the main thing I loved about The Last Time We Say Goodbye was Tyler's presence throughout the whole book. Even though Tyler was gone, Lex and her mother both had times when they saw/felt him. Lex was also having dreams about Tyler - morbid dreams - that allowed her some extra time with him. Lex felt like Tyler wanted something from her and I loved her journey to piecing herself back together and finally being able to say goodbye to her brother.

The ending was even more heartbreaking than the rest of the book (which was also heartbreaking) and left me with tears streaming down my face. Lex reveals what was in Ty's text and she shares what happened with her the last night he was alive. Lex has been on such a huge journey and although the ending isn't a happy one by far, Lex is finally stepping in the right direction to piecing everything back together. There will always be a piece of her life missing, but it's a piece that she'll learn to live without but she'll always miss it.

Overall, The Last Time We Say Goodbye was a beautifully written story following a character trying to come to terms with her brother's death, and her journey to saying goodbye. It's a heartbreaking read that left me sobbing, but I feel like it's really helped me. Thank you, Cynthia Hand. 

6 February 2015

Clipped Wings by Helena Hunting

Clipped Wings by Helena Hunting
Series: Clipped Wings #1
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: March 4th 2014
Source: Bought

Hayden Stryker is a devastatingly handsome tattoo artist. Covered in ink and steel, his artwork acts as armour while he attempts to move on from a world-shattering loss.

Twenty-one-year-old Tenley Page is new to town and battling demons of her own. The chemistry between the two is instant and unlike anything they've ever experienced before.

When Hayden agrees to apply his art to Tenley's skin, the pair embark on an emotional and intense relationship that neither could have anticipated. But as Tenley's past threatens to destroy their fragile romance, Hayden must find a balance between his desire to protect her and his need to claim her as his.

Clipped Wings is one of the books that Brittany recommended me for our 2015 Challenge and it's the first one I've read for it. Brittany has been telling me to read this one for a while, and now I understand why.

Clipped Wings follows our two main characters, Hayden and Tenley, who both blame themselves for tragic events in their past. Hayden and Tenley can feel the chemistry between them, but Tenley is broken and doesn't want to get close to anyone. That is, until Hayden offers to tattoo her. 

Clipped Wings definitely packs a punch. From Hayden's guilt to Tenley's guilt, there were a lot of gut-wrenching moments. Hayden's event happened over 7 years ago and he still blames himself for it. He was already on a downward spiral, but he got even worse. His friend's saved him before he went too far, but he carriers around a lot of guilt about what happened and what he did. He can be sweet and caring when he wants to be, but usually he's confident, powerful and just a little bit possessive. He's got a bit of OCD after what happened and he has to check every room of a house before he can relax. Tenley's event is a bit more recent, it's only been 11 months. Tenley completely blames herself. She is convinced that it's her fault because it was her idea. And it doesn't help when someone else keeps telling you it is. Tenley is in a very fragile state. She's suffering from nightmares and she can't function some days without her anxiety medication to calm her down. But underneath, Tenley is an extremely strong character. Even though the guilt she puts on herself is unnecessary, she shoulders it and begins to get on with her life. She's funny, shy, adorable and I really liked her character.

The whole story revolves around Hayden and Tenley's relationship. They each have something the other needs, and they try to help each other. It's all about Hayden and Tenley getting to know each other, and their growing chemistry. You could tell there was a spark between them straight away, and they kept denying it. But as soon as they stopped denying it, both Hayden and Tenley started to feel a lot better. They need each other.

The ending was a bit of a shocker, I honestly never thought Tenley would do that. So I'll needed to get my hands on the next book sometime soon to find out what happens with the two of them.

Overall, Clipped Wings is a fantastic NA read. I flew through it and I'm kicking myself for waiting so long to get around to it.

5 February 2015

Harry Potter Book Night 2015

Happy Harry Potter Book Night! 
Tonight is the official Bloomsbury Harry Potter Book Night where everyone just celebrates Harry Potter! There are loads of events going on near me - both Waterstones in Glasgow are having an event, and I really wish I had the time to go to one!

So, to celebrate Harry Potter Book Night, I've decided to do a Harry Potter tag.
*Some of the questions are spoilery, so if you haven't read/watched Harry Potter - and you intend to- I'd avoid reading this post*

What is your favourite book in the series?
I think I'd have to go with The Deathly Hallows. The last book was perfection - in my opinion - minus all of the unnecessary deaths of brilliant characters. 

What is your favourite movie? 
Hands down, Prisoner of Azkaban. I adore that movie. It was just such a perfect adaptation, and I love Sirius, Lupin and Buckbeak.
What is your least favourite book in the series? 
I'd probably have to go with Goblet of Fire. I love it and I love the book, but I just feel like they missed out too much and I was really disappointed. WHERE WAS LUDO BAGMAN?

What parts in the books/movies made you cry? 
Fred. I sobbed.

Who is your favourite character?
Fred and George were always my two favourite characters. I adored the Weasley twins, the brought so much fun and laughter.
What would your Patronus be?
It'd probably be a cat.

What would your Boggart be?
Spiders. I hate spiders.

What would you see in the Mirror of Erised?
Ooh, this is a toughie. I honestly have no idea.

If you could have the Resurrection Stone, the Invisibility Cloak or the Elder Wand, which one would you choose? 
Invisibility Cloak please! It'd be awesome.

Elder Wand: Who survived that you wanted to kill?
Lucius Malfoy. I'm actually very surprised that Voldemort didn't kill him.

Resurrection Stone: Which death do you want to undo?
Fred. I'm still not over his death.

Cloak of Invisibility: Which character would you want to erase from the books?
Erase a character? This is really tough. I think I'll go with Cho Chang. I never liked her.

What house would you be in?
I'm a Slytherin on pottermore!

If you could meet one member of the movie cast, who would it be?
Emma Watson. She's amazing.

If you were on the Quidditch team, which position would you pick?
Oooh, I'd probably be a beater.

What is your favourite spell?
Tarantallegra - make your opponent dance. Completely missed out of Chamber of Secrets.

What character would you like to date/marry? 
Draco Malfoy please. I've always had a crush on him. Or maybe Seamus Finnigan. 

What would your job be in the magical world? 
Uhm, I have no idea. I think I'd quite enjoy being a Herbologist. 

What character resembles you the most (both by looks and personality)?
I don't really think there is one. I would love it to be Hermione, but it's not. 

Which character did you want to play in the movies? 
Well, when I was younger and used to run around playing Harry Potter, I was always Hermione. I wanted to be her so bad when I was young.

Were you happy with the ending of the series?
I was. I was extremely happy with the ending. I know a lot of people didn't like the epilogue, but I did. I loved getting that little insight into their adult lives.

How much does Harry Potter mean to you?
Harry Potter means everything to me. I started reading the books when I was around 7 and followed the books until they were finish and the movies from the very beginning. It was my childhood. I grew up with Harry Potter and it will always have a special place in my life.