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review 2018-12-12 03:03
This is Our Story - Audiobook
This Is Our Story - Ashley Elston


Audience: Young Adult



A ten-point buck and a dead body make the same sound when they hit the forest floor.

- opening sentence



This story revolves around the mystery of what happened at River Point when five friends went hunting and one was killed. Afterward, the "River Point Boys" decide to stick together and say that none of them knows who fired the shot that killed their friend. Kate is interning at the DA's office and she is determined to get justice for Grant. But it isn't clear who killed Grant and without evidence, the DA could succumb to the pressure from the powerful families of the boys to sweep the incident under the rug. 


The story is well-written and seems realistic, except for the fact that Kate is the only one who can find evidence to solve the crime. Adults aren't always as inept as YA novels make them out to be. But, I get it - Kate is the intrepid sleuth (ala Nancy Drew).


The plot was slow at times, but I always wanted to keep listening to try to figure out who the killer was. Most of the book is told from Kate's point of view with periodic sections from the POV of the killer (without giving away who it is). I enjoyed hearing what the killer was thinking and planning. I had a hard time keeping the names of the boys straight but that may have been a factor of listening to the audiobook. There are two narrators and they both did a great job. The plot twists, including one that reminds us how technology can hide the truth, make up for the slow parts of the book.


Overall, I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to YA mystery fans.




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review 2016-12-05 18:37
This is Our Story
This Is Our Story - Ashley Elston

I have heard a lot of hype about this novel and it seemed like a story that I would really enjoy so I snagged it while I was browsing the shelves at the library. I liked how the author jumped right in and got the story rolling from the first couple pages.   The story itself then worked itself backwards and the characters retold their story as I tried to figure out just who the guilty party was. The five boys, preppy boys, from an elite school went hunting one day and only four came out of the woods alive. They were the best of the friends, these River Point Boys and had been for years and now, as they emerged, their story of what transpired in the woods sounds like a record on repeat. Illegal activities had transpired that day and perhaps that affected what happened but no one will know because what they say now, is vague and they are united, no one wants to cast blame. There has to be something to crack this case and that’s where the attorneys come into the play. This case is handed down to a lawyer with instructions on how to handle it and I smiled as I read his reactions to their remarks. Kate, an intern in his office goes to school with the River Point Boys and she’s told to keep her distance from them, he doesn’t want anything to destroy his case.  Kate decides to turn PI and she begins her own investigation work. She really got under my skin a few times with her actions and a few times I thought, who the hell was she? She was not the attorney, nor was she was supposed to impair his case yet there were times what she was doing was pushing the limit.


There were a few instances in the novel where things got slow for me but there were some sudden surprises that I hadn’t expected also. In novels like these, I go in trusting no one, anyone that says they didn’t do it, yeah they probably did it and they are on my check list of possible suspects and in this novel, the River Point Boys were my list of suspects. I enjoyed the story, the author dragged me along till the bitter end and then I realized that the one River Point Boy that I thought had pulled the trigger, he was innocent.

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review 2015-08-12 03:05
The Rules for Disappearing/Ashley Elston
The Rules for Disappearing - Ashley Elston

She's been six different people in six different places: Madeline in Ohio, Isabelle in Missouri, Olivia in Kentucky . . . But now that she's been transplanted to rural Louisiana, she has decided that this fake identity will be her last.
Witness Protection has taken nearly everything from her. But for now, they've given her a new name, Megan Rose Jones, and a horrible hair color. For the past eight months, Meg has begged her father to answer one question: What on earth did he do-or see-that landed them in this god-awful mess? Meg has just about had it with all of the Suits' rules-and her dad's silence. If he won't help, it's time she got some answers for herself.
But Meg isn't counting on Ethan Landry, an adorable Louisiana farm boy who's too smart for his own good. He knows Meg is hiding something big. And it just might get both of them killed. As they embark on a perilous journey to free her family once and for all, Meg discovers that there's only one rule that really matters-survival.


This book kept me on my toes the entire time I read it.


I'd had this book on hold for a while and as such had totally forgotten the premise. From the initial scene, I thought that this book was going to be a technical dystopia, but I was wrong! One of the strongest aspects of this book was the understanding I gained of the Witness Protection Program and how it operates. This was an intriguing and original premise.


I think in a way there's some universal theme in wanting to push everyone away. While Meg had legitimate reasons for doing so, I related to her retreating into a shell and thought that Elston made her seem very realistic in doing so.


She and Ethan became pretty intense in their relationship, too intense for their age, but it was incredibly sweet and butterfly inducing to see the efforts he went to in caring for her. Still, I felt like he persisted in chasing her more out of stubbornness at some points--the amount of time he would have spent shuttling her from work to her home in his truck was unrealistic.


I enjoyed how this story had a few minor plotlines that, while not irrelevant, were different to the major plotline. Meg's mother's drinking problem specifically wasn't in anyway necessary to the plot.


It was refreshing to see her and Emma conflict and Ethan and Ben conflict--it felt all so trivial, which made this story seem all so real because those things do matter even within the big picture.


Meg's protectiveness over Teeny was really sweet but I loved that Meg talked about their past and how their relationship had evolved as their situation changed.

I'm not particularly good at solving mysteries before characters do, but I felt like this one was very well done and I was very excited and overwhelmed when I realized two twists near the end.


I did enjoy this book, but I don't find myself particularly compelled to read the sequel, possibly because a lot of the fun of this came in the pressure Meg had to keep the secret. I do recommend this one for anyone who enjoys young adult fiction with a lot of action and mysteries.

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review 2014-05-20 16:37
Book Review: The Rules for Breaking by Ashley Elston
The Rules for Breaking - Ashley Elston

Note: I received an ARC copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. In no way did this affect my opinion.


The Rules for Breaking by Ashley Elston was a thrilling follow up to The Rules for Disappearing. It contained many twists and turns, making the plot fairly unpredictable. It was also extremely different from The Rules for Disappearing.


In this book, Anna and Ethan find themselves pitted against Thomas and a mysterious man that oddly seems familiar to Anna. This time around Anna doesn’t know who to trust, including law enforcement, and there may be more than one person that wants her dead.


I enjoyed this installment for its plot. It was a bit of a slow start, but so many secrets were uncovered that kept things interesting. I also thought the identity of the masked, mysterious man with Thomas was an interesting plot twist and explained a lot regarding why Anna survived in the first place back in The Rules for Disappearing.


Anna and Ethan did get on my nerves a bit. They kept going in circles, relating the same mistakes. I love how they continued to stick together though. They always seemed to talk things through. So although I was a bit annoyed, I continued to adore them together. I love how Ethan kept trying to stick by Anna regardless of whether or not he was physically capable.


All-in-all, I loved and enjoyed reading The Rules for Breaking. I was definitely anxious to know Thomas’s intention after The Rules for Disappearing, and Ashley Elston certainly delivered answering all of my questions. 4.5 stars overall for Ashley Elston’s The Rules for Breaking.

Source: ayamproductions.com/2014/05/the-rules-for-breaking
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review 2014-03-26 14:52
Book Review: The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston
The Rules for Disappearing - Ashley Elston

Before I get into the book, I just like to say that I wasn’t a bit fan of the formatting on my Nook ebook version. I’m not sure if it’s different in the printed version, but the ebook version didn’t have very good breaks in between time jumps. So I got a bit confused at times, but not too much so. I’ll probably purchase a paper back version of The Rules for Disappearing though when it comes out in April. & Now on to the book.


I absolutely loved The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston. It was a bit predictable, but I totally loved all the characters. Plus I’d imagine the stress of being placed in the witness protection program would be similar to what Ashley Elston depicted in The Rules for Disappearing.


“Meg,” the female protagonist, was someone I definitely connected with. Although she was a bit more mature for her age, trying to take care of her sister, she was still very much a teenager. I loved that! She felt more real to me that she wasn’t all adult-like. She was protective, a bit rebellious, and just extremely tired of moving.


I also adored Ethan, the male protagonist. He was much more observant than I thought he’d be, but I’m glad he never truly gave up on “Meg.” He was exactly what she needed. Gosh though, is hog hunting really a date option? That was an interesting development in the story. I must say. I did not see that coming at all.


The one thing I go really annoyed with was that “Meg” at times trusted too easily. This fault made certain aspects of the story predictable, but it also left an opening for a sequel. The ending was a bit much though, in my opinion. It made a sequel blatantly obvious. I’m more fond of subtle hints for a sequel. Regardless, I can’t wait to start reading The Rules for Breaking!


So overall, I loved The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston. I loved reading “Meg’s” story. I also loved the whole witness protection idea. I don’t think I’ve read many stories that feature that. I did find the story a bit predictable, but it didn’t keep me from enjoying it. I’d give 4.5 stars to The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston.

Source: ayamproductions.com/2014/03/rules-disappearing
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