Review of “When It’s Real” by Erin Watt

Review of “When It’s Real” by Erin Watt

Review of “When It’s Real” by Erin WattWhen It's Real five-stars
by Erin Watt
Published by Harlequin on June 1st 2017
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Performing Arts, Music, Romance, Contemporary, Social Themes, Dating & Sex, Family, Siblings
Pages: 304
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Wealth, fame and a real-life romance she never expected—seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett lands it all when she agrees to become a pop star's fake girlfriend in this smart, utterly addictive novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt 

Under ordinary circumstances, Oakley Ford and Vaughn Bennett would never even cross paths. 

There's nothing ordinary about Oakley. This bad-boy pop star's got Grammy Awards, millions of fangirls and a reputation as a restless, too-charming troublemaker. But with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley needs to show the world he's settling down—and who better to help him than Vaughn, a part-time waitress trying to help her family get by? The very definition of ordinary. 

Posing as his girlfriend, Vaughn will overhaul Oakley's image from troublemaker to serious artist. In return for enough money to put her brothers through college, she can endure outlandish Hollywood parties and carefully orchestrated Twitter exchanges. She'll fool the paparazzi and the groupies. She might even start fooling herself a little. 

Because when ordinary rules no longer apply, there's no telling what your heart will do…

WHEN IT’S REAL – REVIEW

 

When it’s Real is a Harlequin Teen novel by #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt. The story features Vaughn Bennett, a seventeen year old girl struggling to make ends meet with her older sister and two younger brothers. After losing both of their parents, the Bennett sisters push themselves through school and land available jobs in order to keep themselves financially afloat. Unfortunately, money continues to grow tighter and tighter, making the future before them appears ominous and uncertain.

IN STEPS FAMOUS TEEN ROCK STAR, OAKLEY FORD, AND HIS WILD AND RECKLESS SELF…

Oakley Ford is an insanely talented musician who is stuck in the midst of the music version of writer’s block. Struggling to find inspiration and desperately wanting to work with the music producer King, Oakley finds that he must turn the scandalous gossip fodder surrounding him into something more ideal and productive. Thankfully, his agent and marketing team come up with the brilliant idea to hire a fake “normal” girlfriend for Oakley. The idea is to make him seem more personable and likable to the masses, while preventing his reputation from sliding into more infamous waters.

AND THEY DISLIKE EACH OTHER ON SIGHT.

Neither Oakley nor Vaughn is particularly thrilled at being placed together. Vaughn finds Oakley to be rude and self-absorbed, and Oakley finds Vaughn to be cold and uptight. But as they spend more time together, feelings begin to change and it becomes difficult to separate true feelings from the ones they are supposed to present to the world.

Once again, Erin Watt completely blew my mind with how amazing this story was! I could literally feel the intensity between the characters pouring off the pages. I found both characters to be equally interesting and easily relatable. The chemistry between Vaughn and Oakley was palpable, the setting was captivating, and the humor was spot on! I laughed multiple times throughout the novel, and also found myself eagerly devouring the words on the pages to see how the scenes would end. I was never disappointed.

“WHEN IT’S REAL” IS A BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN MODERN LOVE STORY BRIMMING WITH LIKABLE CHARACTERS, SEARING CHEMISTRY, AND DELIGHTFUL HUMOR!

Like Erin Watt? Check out my review of Paper Princess!

When It's Real - Amazon

Check out “When It’s Real” on Amazon!

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five-stars
Review of “Uninvited” by Sophie Jordan

Review of “Uninvited” by Sophie Jordan

Review of “Uninvited” by Sophie JordanUninvited four-stars
by Sophie Jordan
ISBN: 9780062233646
Published by HarperCollins on January 27th 2015
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Science Fiction, General, Romance, Action & Adventure
Pages: 400
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From New York Times bestselling author Sophie Jordan, Uninvited is a chilling and suspenseful story about a girl whose DNA brands her a killer, perfect for fans of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer and Confessions of a Murder Suspect.

Davy had everything—a terrific boyfriend, the homecoming crown, a bright future at Juilliard—but when her genetic tests come back positive for Homicidal Tendency Syndrome, she loses it all. Uninvited from her prestigious school, avoided by her friends and family, she is placed in a special class with other "carriers" who are treated like the murderers they someday might become.

Only Sean, a fellow HTS carrier, can relate to her new life and tells her that she alone controls her actions—not the code embedded into her DNA. But even if she can learn to trust him, can Davy trust herself?

Review of Uninvited by Sophie Jordan

Review by: April Hughes

Uninvited by Sophie Jordan

Uninvited by Sophie Jordan

 

Review of Uninvited by Sophie Jordan

Uninvited is the first novel in the Uninvited series by New York Times best-selling author Sophie Jordan. The story follows Davy, a musical prodigy from a wealthy and respected family. Her life starts off perfect in the novel- the perfect boyfriend, perfect family, perfect school, and perfect friends. Davy herself is beyond reproach. Unfortunately, her ideal life comes crumbling down around her when she is discovered to be genetically flawed.

This story takes place in the not-so-distant future when the “kill” gene is discovered. This gene is found in almost all people with homicidal tendencies. As crime rates climb to staggering numbers, Davy finds herself the victim of judgmental, ignorant, and presumptuous individuals. Everyone diagnosed with the kill gene is treated like lesser beings. I would say the only “positive” outcome of this discovered gene is that Davy meets Sean- another kill gene carrier. Sean basically shows her that just because you’re labeled a certain way by society does not mean you’re necessarily what they claim you are.

I enjoyed the characters- I loved seeing the different dynamic between those who are carriers and those who are considered “normal”. I enjoyed the different locations utilized by the author- the public school with its “cage”, Mount Haven, and the cabin in the woods. Each location brought a new element of intensity and surprise.

The story was fast-paced, action-filled, suspenseful, and provided enough chemistry between Davy and Sean to satisfy the romantic in me. Uninvited ended perfectly! I cannot wait to see how they get themselves out of the situation they are currently in. When the whole world thinks you’re dangerous and wants you eliminated and there’s nowhere truly safe to go- what do you do?

Pick up your copy today on Amazon!

I can’t wait to find out what happens in the sequel titled “Unleashed”.

 

See my other book reviews here~

four-stars
Review of The Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia

Review of The Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia

Review of The Lovely Reckless by Kami GarciaThe Lovely Reckless four-half-stars
by Kami Garcia
Published by Imprint on October 4th 2016
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Girls & Women, Social Themes, Emotions & Feelings
Pages: 304
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She used to care about being the good girl.

Haunted by the memory of her boyfriend's death, Frankie Devereux lives her life by one dangerous rule: nothing matters. But she crosses the line with a reckless choice that forces her to move in with her dad—an overprotective cop—and transfer to a new school. When Frankie meets Marco, a tough street racer who is risking everything for his family, things get complicated.

He wasn't always the bad boy.

Everyone says Marco Leone is trouble. But at Frankie's new school, where fistfights in the halls don’t faze anyone and illegal street racing is more popular than football, Marco is also the fastest (and hottest) guy around. As their attraction grows, Frankie can't seem to stay away from him—until she discovers Marco's dangerous secret.

Your own heart will race with each page turn of this heart-stopping star-crossed love story.

An Imprint Book

Book Review of “The Lovely Reckless” by Kami Garcia

Review By: April Hughes

 

Review of The Lovely Reckless: The Lovely Reckless is a standalone novel by author Kami Garcia. The story follows Frankie Devereaux, a high school senior from the Heights- a neighborhood of the rich and privileged. In the beginning of the story, Frankie’s mental and emotional battle over the murder of her boyfriend comes to a head when her reckless behavior lands her in jail with a DUI. This behavior is apparently unusual for Frankie, as she describes herself previously as a happy, law-abiding student who is not prone to impulsive or reckless behavior. This naturally changes after she witnesses her boyfriend’s murder. Unfortunately, the killer is never caught because Frankie is unable to describe him to the police, as her mind has apparently blocked the memory out.

 

Frankie’s mother, the epitome of a spoiled and selfish wife of a wealthy man, is unable to handle the self-destructive aspects of her grieving daughter. Frankie is subsequently sent to live with her father, an undercover cop whose primary job is to nab car thieves, in a far less glamorous neighborhood dubbed “The Downs”. It is at the Downs public high school that Frankie meets Cruz, a girl who reminds me a lot of Letty from the Fast and the Furious, and Marco Leone, a boy well-known in the Downs as an illegal street racer and car thief.

 

The characters in the novel truly made the story. The Lovely Reckless was not your typical “boy meet girl, they both fall in love, there is some drama, then they live happily-ever-after” story. There was a lot more to it than that. First, there was Frankie’s quest to unlock the memory of her boyfriend’s death by frequently writing in her journal about that fateful night. Then, there was her struggle over who she was prior to her boyfriend Noah’s murder, and becoming familiar with who she became after his death. Marco had to battle his own demons. He was not merely a criminal from the Downs. Both characters internal struggles, coupled with their burgeoning interest in one another, made for an interesting read.



I will also say this, I enjoyed watching Frankie’s relationship with the father she barely knows unfold. The author did a great job staying true to the dynamic of a typical father and daughter relationship and all the trials that it entails. I was also mentally fist-bumping the author whenever Cruz demonstrated that there are girls out there who know their way around a vehicle (hell yeah!). Finally, I loved that tingle of ice sliding through my veins the moment Frankie found out who killed Noah (you’ll have to read the book to find that one out).

I loved the location, I loved the star-crossed lovers, I loved the characters, I loved the illegal street races (though I wished Frankie had more kick-ass race scenes), and the loved watching the murder-mystery unfold.

Heck. I loved everything about this book.

Buy, or download, your copy of The Lovely Reckless today!

This was my review of The Lovely Reckless, Also, See my REVIEW OF PAPER PRINCESS BY ERIN WATT

four-half-stars
Review of Unhooked by Lisa Maxwell

Review of Unhooked by Lisa Maxwell

Review of Unhooked by Lisa MaxwellUnhooked four-stars
by Lisa Maxwell
ISBN: 9781481432061
Published by Simon and Schuster on February 2nd 2016
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Action & Adventure, Pirates, Fairy Tales & Folklore, Adaptations, Juvenile Nonfiction, Activity Books
Pages: 352
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From “talented wordsmith” (Publishers Weekly) Lisa Maxwell comes a lush, atmospheric fantasy novel filled with twists and turns about a girl who is kidnapped and brought to an island inhabited by fairies, a roguish ship captain, and bloodthirsty beasts.

For as long as she can remember, Gwendolyn Allister has never had a place to call home. Her mother believes they are being hunted by brutal monsters, and those delusions have brought them to London, far from the life Gwen had finally started to build for herself. Gwen’s only saving grace is that her best friend, Olivia, is with her for the summer.

But shortly after their arrival, the girls are kidnapped by shadowy creatures and dragged into a world of flesh-eating sea hags and dangerous Fey. And Gwen begins to realize that maybe her mother isn’t so crazy after all…

Gwen discovers that this new world she inhabits is called Neverland, but it’s nothing like the Neverland you’ve heard about in stories. Here, good and evil lose their meaning and memories slip like water through your fingers. As Gwen struggles to remember where she came from and tries to find a way home, she must choose between trusting the charming fairy-tale hero who says all the right things and the captivating pirate who promises to keep her safe.

Caught in the ultimate battle between good and evil, with time running out and her enemies closing in, Gwen is forced to finally face the truths she’s been hiding from all along. But can she save Neverland without losing herself?

Review of Unhooked

Unhooked is a standalone novel by author Lisa Maxwell. I will admit to being intrigued by all the unique and fresh re-imaginings of the more popular fairy tales. Peter Pan has always been a favorite of mine; so, when I saw this book sitting on the shelf of Books-a-Million in Portland, Maine, I just had to check it out. There were quite a few things about this novel that piqued my interest- first, the brooding, seafaring Captain Hook. Unhooked’s captain is nothing like the one in Disney’s animated Peter Pan, or is he anything like Dustin Hoffman’s portrayal in the 1991 film Hook. This Captain doesn’t sport a long, curly wig or sport an obnoxious handlebar mustache- the only thing he sports is a wicked hook, a brooding disposition, and looks that tempt a girl to never want to leave Neverland, despite how dark and ominous this version of the land is.

The second thing that caught my interest was Neverland itself. Lisa Maxwell’s description of this whimsical world is imaginative, that you almost feel like you’re there with the characters. The mermaids in this tale were blood-thirsty and frightening, the fairies weren’t glittery and sweet-they were tricksters whose skills were more aligned with manipulation and deceit. The lost boys weren’t young boys who longed for a mother- Nope. They operate solely on mayhem and violence. They are more apt to terrorize someone’s mother than to ask to be read to and tucked in at night. Even the land itself is dangerous. With it constantly shifting and changing, you could end up being the victim of a harrowing survival tale, rather than the heroine of a dashing adventure. Finally, Peter Pan himself is a character worth noting- This Peter isn’t the fun-loving, brave hero that we were introduced to in “Peter Pan” or “Hook”. This guy might be considered handsome and charming- but he’s as bad as the Fae that I described above.

The heroine of the novel, Gwendolyn “Gwen” Allister describes a strained relationship with her mother because she feels her Mom’s ramblings about monsters is ruining their lives. After all, they have just moved to London in the beginning of the story to escape them. Luckily, Gwen gets to bring her best friend Olivia along to help her get settled in to her new home. We begin detecting something “off” in the beginning of the story by the situation with the lantern Gwen is told to keep on in her room, and Gwen’s strange encounter with a beautiful, albeit ominous, woman (Unhooked’s creepy version of Tinker Bell). My suspicion that this story was heading toward a more dark re-telling was confirmed when Gwen and Olivia are snatched from their room in the night by monstrous creatures and swept away to Neverland, where Gwen nearly drowns.

This retelling of Peter Pan is brilliant! The characters are three dimensional, the imagery and descriptions were extraordinary, the romance was tantalizing, and the story developed perfectly. I found myself chuckling at a few parts, fanning myself after a few encounters with Gwen and Hook, and anxiously gripping the book during the more tense, bone-chilling moments. Unhooked is the perfect blend of adventure, mystery, horror, and romance.

If you’re looking to be swept away into another world, pick up (or download) your copy of Unhooked today!

four-stars
Review of Paper Princess by Erin Watt

Review of Paper Princess by Erin Watt

Review of Paper Princess by Erin WattPaper Princess five-stars
by Erin Watt
ISBN: 9781945034008
Series: The Royals #1
Published by Timeout LLC on April 4th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Social Themes, Adolescence, Dating & Relationships, Young Adult Fiction, Dating & Sex
Pages: 369
Buy on Amazon//Barnes & Noble
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"This generation's Cruel Intentions." Jennifer L. Armentrout, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author. These Royals will ruin you¿ From wharf fights and school brawls to crumbling lives inside glittery mansions, one guy tries to save himself. Reed Royal has it all--looks, status, money. The girls at his elite prep school line up to date him, the guys want to be him, but Reed never gave a damn about anyone but his family until Ella Harper walked into his life. What started off as burning resentment and the need to make his father's new ward suffer turned into something else entirely--keep Ella close. Keep Ella safe. But when one foolish mistake drives her out of Reed's arms and brings chaos to the Royal household, Reed's entire world begins to fall apart around him. Ella doesn't want him anymore. She says they'll only destroy each other. She might be right. Secrets. Betrayal. Enemies. It's like nothing Reed has ever dealt with before, and if he's going to win back his princess, he'll need to prove himself Royally worthy. Warning: This book ends in a cliffhanger..

Paper Princess Review

 

Paper Princess is the first book in the Royals Series written by #1 New York Times bestselling author Erin Watt. The story follows Ella Harper- a high school junior trying to make ends meet, under the radar, after the death of her mother. Ella eventually finds herself plucked out of one of the lowest moments of her young life by Callum Royal, an obscenely wealthy man determined to take care of her like one of his own. It’s in his home that Ella finds herself having to contend with Callum’s five sons. It is evident by their chilly first meeting, that this new golden life is going to be fraught with its own challenges.

Reed Royal, the second oldest son, makes you love him and hate him consistently throughout the book. Just when you think he’s making a turning point in his negative regard for Ella, he surprises you with another example of how douche-like he can be. Reed isn’t the only one targeting Ella in nasty ways, he has help from one particularly brutal girl at their high school. Ella is caught in the midst of trying to make a life for herself, adapting to this new environment, and having to suffer betrayal, bullying, and romantic interest all at the same time.

It’s a wicked combination.

I’m going to admit, I finished the book all in one sitting. I literally could not put it down. I found myself equally obsessed with the Royals, needing to see what devious tricks they had up their sleeves. The adults in the story were equally as deceptive as the teens. The story was one wicked moment after the other…and that chemistry between Reed and Ella? Well. Who would have that that two people so determined to make one another so miserable would provide such a concoction of passion, need, and want.

You can find Paper Princess on Amazon for the Kindle instantly for $5.99

five-stars

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