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review 2019-02-19 13:05
Best Laid Plans by Lauren Blakely
Best Laid Plans - Lauren Blakely

 

 

Love is frustrating. It never comes when you want it to, but it always arrives right on time. Blakely shows the bright side of nursing a broken heart. Arden and Gabe put the naughty in fun. Best Laid Plans says arrivederci to all the heartache that came before and aloha to that long awaited happily ever after. Like the Supremes' sang: "You can't hurry love." However, Lauren Blakely makes every second totally worth the wait.

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review 2019-02-17 23:37
YA graphic novel about the teenage Catwoman; falls short of expectations, lacks depth, and is full of foul language
Under The Moon: A Catwoman Tale - Lauren Myracle,Isaac Goodhart

Life pretty much sucks for Selina Kyle, at least for as long as she stays living at home with her mom and the endless stream of boyfriends she brings home. None have been as bad as the latest guy, Dernell, who’s cruel and will even lock Selina up in a closet when he wants to teach her a lesson. When something happens to Selina’s new cat, she can’t take it anymore; life on the streets will surely be better than staying where she feels so unhappy.

Selina joins a small ‘pack’ of street kids, learns parkour, gets close to an old friend and takes on the new name and persona ‘Catgirl.’ Usually more of a loner, she begrudgingly learns she has to trust others if she is going to survive. And she also plans to carry out some not-so-small heists in gritty, crime-addled Gotham City.

 

This YA graphic novel is fresh from the DC Ink line and is written by author Lauren Myracle, who is no stranger to teen and tween lit, writing the bestsellers ttyl, ttfn, l8r, and g8r. This also means some pretty high expectations, because of Myracle’s familiarity with her audience and her success.

‘Under The Moon’ also happens to be about probably one of the coolest female comic book icons, Catwoman, although here we really have a version of her unlike any that has been seen before. Since this Selina is only fourteen years old, she really is a girl, and so calling it ‘A Catwoman Tale’ is definitely a bit of a stretch. And so begins the problems, because if anyone has read or seen any incarnation of this character before, it’s really hard to remove that image or knowledge (only just recently Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas came out as #3 in the DC Icons series).

 

In previous comics and the novel I just mentioned, we see an older Selina, who takes care of her younger sister and is trained under Carmine Falcone, as well as a past that included her mother dying, being a prostitute, as well as training and living in Europe.

 

‘Under the Moon’ gives us a Selina with a wealth of issues: she’s a runaway, she stops going to school as a result (making her a high-school dropout), and resorts to cutting to relieve her emotional pain. While I understand the notion of presenting a teen character who has the inclination to run from her home situation (abuse in the home is a pretty valid reason), or has a problem with self-harming (I will warn readers now about this, because it’s a big trigger), since these may be relatable issues for some readers, I also take issue with that being done in a responsible manner. I feel like these are risky, BIG topics to so lightly insert into a slim 96-page graphic novel, with very little insight. It’s irresponsible to add in a topic like self-harming so casually.

 

Since this is aimed at teens who are 13 to 17, I also feel like the flagrant use of foul language was wholly unnecessary. Unlike another teen DC graphic novel coming out soon after this, Kami Garcia’s ‘Teen Titans: Raven,’ that doesn’t have expletives and talk about things like penis size thrown in, this probably will be the reason for reconsideration for libraries (especially school libraries) carrying this book. I am not naïve about the use of swearing in YA lit, but it seems excessive in ‘Under The Moon’ and distracted me from the story, being used in a way that seemed like it was used to pander to  young readers (who may think it’s ‘cool’ to talk like this).

 

I also got a very mixed notion as to who Selina is because of the swings in her characterization. Her portrayal is quite inconsistent, at once dismissive of the few friends she has, then she acts the opposite way soon afterward (although her compassion towards Rosie in the latter part of the novel is heart-warming). The self-harming comes out of nowhere. She is sometimes self-assured and then not remotely confident. And her connection to Bruce Wayne, which apparently starts in preschool, feels more confusing than it ever is in most literary and cinematic portrayals of Catwoman so far. Him being at public school is yet another diversion from his own origin story.

Something else that irritated me, is Selina’s inconsistent connection to CATS. I wasn’t convinced entirely by the way she came to call herself ‘Catgirl’ despite the event that preceded this juncture.

 

I wanted so much to love this graphic novel: the sentiments of her being a stray and her loneliness are powerful, with these being reasons for her ‘cat-burglar’ behavior, but I found too many problems that I couldn’t look past. Fleshed out and with paying more attention to the deeper issues in this story I would maybe go along with Selina’s backstory, but I can't recommend this, as it is right now (*as always, edits may be made before publication), to the targeted reader group.

 

**Points/extra star for cool artwork.

 

 

Source: www.goodreads.com/book/show/38452822-under-the-moon?ac=1&from_search=true
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text 2019-02-12 07:10
Book Buzz - Huge Deal

 

 

 

HUGE DEAL
21 Wall Street (Book 3)
Lauren Layne
Release date: Feb 12th, 2019
Montlake Romance
 
Blurb:
 
Even for a top-gun banker, temptation this hot is quite a gamble, in a sexy Wall Street romp from New York Times bestselling author Lauren Layne.
 

An alpha among the wolves of Wall Street, Kennedy Dawson rose to the top of the pack by striking the right contracts at the right times. But there’s one deal that’s been giving him a run for his money—a pact to never again let his assistant, Kate, get under his skin. She may be smart, gorgeous, and sharp as a whip, but she’s definitely off-limits.

 

Kate Henley isn’t a banker, but she knows a thing or two about risk management—specifically, about managing her attraction to her smolderingly sexy boss. She already fell once, and Kennedy showed no sign of paying a return on her investment. So when Kennedy’s brother starts pursuing her, Kate figures she has the best of both worlds. Jack is charming, rich, very attentive, and the spitting image of his older brother.

It’s also making Kennedy think twice. But to win Kate’s heart, he’ll have to broker the deal of a lifetime…and prove he’s worth the risk.

 

Buy (Kindle, Print and Audio):

 

HUGE DEALhttps://laurenlayne.com/books/huge-deal 

HOT ASSET: https://laurenlayne.com/books/hot-asset

HARD SELL: https://laurenlayne.com/books/hard-sell

 

 

 

About LL: @laurenlayneauthor

 

Lauren Layne is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of more than two dozen romantic comedies. Her books have sold over a million copies, in nine languages. Lauren's work has been featured in Publishers Weekly, Glamour, The Wall Street Journal, and Inside Edition. She’s based in New York City.  

 

 

 

 

 

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text 2019-02-04 01:16
January Re-Cap
Devils Unto Dust - Emma Berquist
Long Live The Beautiful Hearts - Emma Scott
You: A Novel - Caroline Kepnes
Sugar & Gold - Emma Scott
Only Human - Sylvain Neuvel
Bright Ruin - Vic James
Everything Unexpected - Caroline O'Nolan
All These Beautiful Strangers - Elizabeth Klehfoth
Sadie - Courtney Summers
Roomies - Christina Lauren

Plus...

 

The month of January was a decent reading month for me overall.  Lots of crappy/cold weather that kept me homebound, well, other than going to work.  I was able to get a decent amount of reading/listening in.

 

๏ ๏ ๏ A Bookish Obsession Monthly Reading Re-Cap ๏ ๏ ๏

 

 

{Audio} Devils Unto Dust by Emma Berquist

 

Highlights Include:  

Zombie-like Creatures

Alternate History

Young Adult

 

Finish Date:  01/01

2.5STARS - GRADE=D+

 

 

 

{Netgalley eARC} Long Live the Beautiful Hearts by Emma Scott

 

Highlights Include:

Contemporary Romance

Wonderful Characters

A Favorite Author

Part 2 Of A Duology

 

Finish Date:  05/05

5+STARS - GRADE=A++

 

 

 

 

{Audio} You by Caroline Kepnes

 

Highlights Include:

JOE

Mouth-Dropping Moments

Sex-Plicit

 

Finish Date:  01/06

4.7STARS - GRADE=A

 

 

 

{Audio} Sugar & Gold by Emma Scott

 

Highlights Include:

Adult Contemporary Romance

Sexually Explicit Scenes (possibly a few too many)

Splash of Supernatural Elements

One of my Favorite Authors

 

Finish Date: 01/10

4STARS - GRADE=B+

 

 

 

 

{Audio} Only Human by Sylvain Neuvel

 

Highlights Include:

Giant Robots

Science Fiction w/Aliens

Life On Another Planet

Existential Elements

A Satisfying Ending

Full-Cast Narration

 

Finish Date: 01/13

5STARS - GRADE=A+

 

 

 

{Audio} Bright Ruin by Vic James

 

Highlights Include:

Alternate/Dystopian-ish Society

Magic

Fantastical Elements

Intrigue

Good Triumphing Over Evil

A Small Splash of Romance

 

Finish Date: 01/17

4.3STARS - GRADE=A-

 

 

 

{Kindle eBook} Everything Unexpected by Caroline Nolan

 

 

Highlights Include:

Adult Contemporary Romance

Friends to Lovers 

The heroine has the same name as ME! 

My second book by this Author

 

Finish Date: 01/19

3.5STARS - GRADE=B-

 

 

 

{Audio} All These Beautiful Strangers by Elizabeth Klehfoth

 

Highlights Include:

Young Adult Contemporary

Pretty Little Liars Vibe

Boarding School Secret Society

Multi-Layered Mystery

Psychological Thriller

Three different Narrators

Stand-Alone

 

Finish Date: 01/22

4.3STARS - GRADE=A-

 

 

 

{Audio} Sadie by Courtney Summers

 

Highlights Include:

Full-Cast Narration

Mystery

Revenge

Substance Abuse

YA Contemporary

Unique Format

 

Finish Date: 01/24

4.7STARS - GRADE=A

 

 

 

 

{Audio} Roomies by Christina Lauren

 

Highlights Include:

Let's Get Married then Fall In Love

Irish Hero

Musically Influenced

Rom-Com

New-to-Me Author

Sex-Plicit

 

Finish Date: 01/27

4STARS - GRADE=B+

 

 

 

 

{Audio} Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama

 

Highlights Include:

Present Day Interspersed With Historical Flashbacks

Pilgrims of Plymouth History

Mermaids

Cursed Ghosts

An Evil Sea Hag

Doomed Romance

 

Finish Date: 01/30

3STARS - GRADE=C

 

 

 

{Kindle eBook} Pitch Dark by Courtney Alameda

 

Highlights Include:

Adventure in Deep Space

Diverse Cast of Characters

Dystopian-ish

Horror-if-ic

YA Romance

A Stand-Alone

 

Finish Date: 01/31

3.3STARS - GRADE=B-

 

 

 

 

Plus One DNf @ 75%

 

 

 

 

JANUARY'S TOTAL BOOKS READ IS 13

 

 

10 Audiobooks

2 Kindle eBooks

& 1 Netgalley eARC

MY TOTAL # of pages read (including Audio) is 4,743

 

With Best Cover Going To...

 

 

 

 

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review 2019-02-03 17:18
4 Out Of 5 STARS Roomies by Christina Lauren
Roomies - Christina Lauren

 

๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 
Let's Get Married then Fall In Love
Irish Hero
Musically Influenced
Rom-Com
New-to-Me Author
Sex-Plicit
 
 
 
 

With Narration Performed by K.C. Sheridan



 
 

 

๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏

 
Set against a New York City backdrop, and immersed in the theatre of performing arts, this sweetly endearing story is just the type of book to delve into when you've been reading a lot of weighty type stories.  With just the right amount of funny added to an engaging romance and easily likable characters.   Is it the type of book you'll remember forever?  Possibly not...but that doesn't mean it isn't a worthwhile read/listen.  The narration was excellently performed by K.C. Sheridan.

 

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏

 

4STARS - GRADE=B+

 
 
 
 

๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 

 

Plot⇝ 3.8/5
Narration Performance⇝ 5/5
Main Characters⇝ 4/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 4/5
The Feels⇝ 3.8/5
Pacing⇝ 4/5
Addictiveness⇝ 4/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 4/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 4.5/5
Ending⇝ 3.8/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Nope.
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝  It fits the story well.
Setting⇝ New York City
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
๏ ๏ ๏

๏ ๏ ๏ Links ๏ ๏ ๏

 

Kindle eBook | Audio

Add to Goodreads | Add to Booklikes 


Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
 

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