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review 2018-11-21 21:58
A Sweet and Sassy Country Music Story that's sure to please...
You'd Be Mine: A Novel - Erin Hahn

๏ ๏ ๏  Book Blurb ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 

 

Annie Mathers is America’s sweetheart and heir to a country music legacy full of all the things her Gran warned her about. Superstar Clay Coolidge is most definitely going to end up one of those things.

But unfortunately for Clay, if he can’t convince Annie to join his summer tour, his music label is going to drop him. That’s what happens when your bad boy image turns into bad boy reality. Annie has been avoiding the spotlight after her parents’ tragic death, except on her skyrocketing YouTube channel. Clay’s label wants to land Annie, and Clay has to make it happen.


Swayed by Clay’s undeniable charm and good looks, Annie and her band agree to join the tour. From the start fans want them to be more than just tour mates, and Annie and Clay can’t help but wonder if the fans are right. But if there’s one part of fame Annie wants nothing to do with, it’s a high-profile relationship. She had a front row seat to her parents’ volatile marriage and isn’t interested in repeating history. If only she could convince her heart that Clay, with his painful past and head over heels inducing tenor, isn’t worth the risk.

 

 

 

 

๏ ๏ ๏  My Review ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 

I really thought this was going to come off as overly heavy with the Young of Young Adult, but it surprised me, it deals with some heavy issues and does it surprisingly well.  With a feel that reminds me of Open Road Summer, this story did not disappoint and I think I liked this even more than that book.  The romance has all the feels, even for YA...and I loved every one of the characters so much.  I was also blown away by the songwriting, especially "you'd be mine" and how it embodies the whole story. I would love to hear it put to music.  Since I'm from Michigan, I loved that Annie and even the Author is too.  There was even a shout-out to Grand Rapids, which I live only a little north of.


๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 

4.8STARS - GRADE=A

 

 

 

 

 Breakdown of Ratings  

 

Plot⇝ 4.5/5

Main Characters⇝ 5/5

Secondary Characters⇝ 5/5

The Feels⇝ 5/5

Pacing⇝ 4.5/5

Addictiveness⇝ 4.5/5

Theme or Tone⇝ 5/5

Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 5/5

Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 5/5

Originality⇝ 5/5

Ending⇝ 5/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Nope.

๏ ๏ ๏

Book Cover⇝ It's okay...

Setting⇝ Michigan/Indiana and all over the United States

Source⇝ I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review 

๏ ๏ ๏

Goodreads

Amazon

Booklikes

 

 
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review 2018-11-10 15:02
Touch of Love
Touch of Love - Nicky James

Absolutely love this series and this exploration into these phobias. The amount of intimacy shared between these two men with so little touch was wtitten beautifully.

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review 2018-11-04 15:05
Uncanny by Sarah Fine
Uncanny - Sarah Fine

๏ ๏ ๏ Book Blurb ๏ ๏ ๏


Two sisters. One death. No memories.

Cora should remember every detail about the night her stepsister, Hannah, fell down a flight of stairs to her death, especially since her Cerepin—a sophisticated brain-computer interface—may have recorded each horrifying moment. But when she awakens after that night, her memories gone, Cora is left with only questions—and dread of what the answers might mean.

When a downward spiral of self-destruction forces Cora to work with an AI counselor, she finds an unexpected ally, even as others around her grow increasingly convinced that Hannah’s death was no accident. As Cora’s dark past swirls chaotically with the versions of Hannah’s life and death that her family and friends want to believe, Cora discovers the disturbing depths of what some people may do—including herself.

With her very sanity in question, Cora is forced to face her greatest fear. She will live or die by what she discovers.

 

๏ ๏ ๏  My Review ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 
Uncanny's setting is a frightening future that doesn't seem too far off...with integrated AI controlling almost every aspect of our lives.  Always watching...always learning.  Despite having some eww moments with some AI/human love, I ended up really liking this.  This story is infinitely thought-provoking and deals with a lot of existential type principals.   The narration was mostly well done, despite the annoying level of screechyness that Bailey Carr's voice could reach.
 

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 

☆4☆STARS - GRADE=B+

 
 
 
 

๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 

Plot⇝ 4.2/5 
Main Characters⇝ 4/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 4/5
The Feels⇝ 4/5
Pacing⇝ 4/5
Addictiveness⇝ 3.7/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4.3/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 4/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 4/5
Originality⇝ 4.2/5
Ending⇝ 4.3/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Nope.
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ It sort of creeps me out.
Narration⇝ Bailey Carr (3.5☆) & Scott Merriman (5☆) his voice was perfect for the AI
Setting⇝ Year 2069
Source⇝ Audiobook (Scribd)
 

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review 2018-10-30 02:34
So You Want to Talk About Race - Ijeoma Oluo
So You Want to Talk About Race - Ijeoma Oluo

Really I don't have any interest in talking about race. What I want is to be a better human in a way that is helpful to other human beings. Oluo is someone I follow on Twitter. Her writing is wonderfully clear and straightforward and also surprisingly kind.  But so practical! Mostly I try to avoid ever talking to anyone about anything, but this book lays out for me concrete times and places and ways to use my privilege to benefit others. Surprisingly kind because withstanding a lifetime of abuse by society should enrage everyone. Our culture is cruel and dehumanizing and grossly unfair, and some days it is all I can do not to run screaming. This is what we have made and it is awful and cruel and murderous. It is prejudiced and short sighted and stupid and it is only the astounding grace and kindness of individuals in the worst moments that make it worthwhile.

I want to make life easier and better and more just for everyone and I thank Oluo for taking the time to share her wisdom and determination and to encourage me forward in the light. Right now feels very dark, so I am grateful to all those who can show me a way forward and give me hope not just that we can do better, but that we will rise up and choose to do better. Sometimes just looking after those closest to me is all I can manage and not even do that well. But more often I can listen, and learn, and witness, and maybe, just a little more, I can speak. And remember, every day that humankind is my business.

 

Library copy

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review 2018-10-04 23:59
Once Upon a River - Diane Setterfield  for Deadlands
Once Upon a River - Diane Setterfield

[10/05/18  Edited to add: I managed to upload a bad picture of my bingo card.]

 

This is such a good book I want to be a better writer to do it justice in my review. Waiting longer for inspiration is just not on though: my memory will let the details blur and the experience fade. 

 

Setterfield is a writer who's greatest flaw is not being prolific. Actually, that may be the only flaw. She has once again crafted a work of fiction that has a convincing Victorian setting with a modern sensibility directing the reader's attention to characters and incidents that a true Victorian wouldn't, but logic suggests that they are all valid. She manages to tell quite a few stories and examples of the craft of storytelling within a greater story of amazing events. While many writers succeed at making a house a character within their fiction, Setterfield has made part of the Thames a character, nor was she stinting in permitting this character moods. Okay, on the winter solstice the usual group are sitting around drinking in the Swan, an inn distinguished by the storytelling within. The door opens, a man, his face a bloody mess staggers in clutching a large doll in his hands.

 

Over the course of one year we watch the repercussions of that moment: how it affects characters major and minor and also, this is the tricksy bit, we watch how those events become stories. Yes, many stories dependent on point of view, and skill, stories becoming more stories as that one event is observed (or not), in light of new events, and then, still later developments. The metaphor is well served: there is an attempt to trace the roots of the story back to the beginning, which you can't do any more than you can trace a river back, fractally there are always more branches feeding in.

 

There is so much: there are clever half-starved orphans, prosperous farmers, the family of innkeepers, the town midwife, the minister, servants and animals, wealthy distillery owners, thieves and blackguards, despite the extensive cast one never feels that the author is coasting by with stereotypes or with every character having the same voice. There is plot and pathos enough for Dickens, and despite the 21st century sensibility there's none of that business of giving a character clearly modern ideas.

 

There is, of course, a supernatural element as well as a few mysteries, dreadful crimes and moments of grace. Everything is here, told my a humanist in the Pratchett vein, but without the jokes and footnotes. It is a lovely, suspenseful book that I couldn't bear to put down in order to post updates. Read it soon: give it to yourself or someone you really like as a gift for one of the several solstice-adjacent holidays. Just the thing for long winter nights by the fire.

 

ARC from publisher

 

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