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review 2015-02-09 08:00
18 Thoughts
18 Thoughts - Jamie Ayres

Olga Gay Worontzoff left the Underworld for her final year of high school anxious for things to return to normal, but fate has other plans.


The new hottie at school reads her thoughts but nobody else’s. Her best friend wakes up from his coma acting like a completely different person. Caught in a world that’s a mix of familiar and supernatural, she must confront what she will—or won’t—do to bring him back and stare down her own perceived inadequacies to face a couple of tenacious demons, figurative and literal.


Everything she thought she knew about reality will change as she walks the line between past and present, fear and faith, love and loyalty.


And by the end of a heartbreaking year, she might be forced to realize “normal” in the conventional sense of the word is the one thing she may never achieve.


Find Online: Goodreads | Amazon US | Amazon UK



Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a free copy of 18 Thoughts for this blog tour and an honest review!


For this review I thought I stick to the theme and present it in 18 thoughts (more like ramblings). Make that one.


2. I'd only just finished reading 18 Things, the first book in this series before starting this one (as I read 18 Truths already last year). Therefore at the beginning it felt like I was reading a different version of the same novel.


3. As many things synchronized, I actually quite liked that.


4. In the second part I started remembering things from the second book as well, and I felt a shift from it feeling like the first book to feeling like the second book.


5. Unfortunately, this also involved more of the somewhat preachy tone that annoyed me in the second book.


6. Although I really liked the idea they got to do things over and have another shot at life I didn't like what else was thrown at them. But I won't go into spoiler here.


7. The only people that seemed important were Olga, Nate and Conner. The rest of their friends were mainly interchangeable.


8. The Angels and Demons felt like caricatures rather than characters.


9. Speaking of the afterlife; I still wonder why there's a high school in Juvie. If they're supposed to stay there forever, why the school?



That Demon-baby reminded me too much of Gaia from the Gone-series.

(spoiler show)


11. I didn't like what was happening to Conner because I felt the only reason it was happening to him was because he's *horror* an atheist, which brings me back to point five.


12. I could've done without the love triangle.


13. Why are there always different (1st person) POVs?


14. I did like the fact that Nate was able to read Olga's thoughts. I'm not sure how it was supposed to work or why it were only her thoughts he could read, but I could completely understand how self-conscious this made Olga and how she was unable to stop thinking embarrassing thoughts.


15. Why does Olga get to work in a bookshop but I don't? (I guess that's the sin of envy, oh no!)


16. After 'the thing' happens to Olga, the book lost me a bit as it all seemed a bit, I'm not completely sure how to say it since it's a fantasy novel anyway, unreal. Perhaps not original enough to really leave an impression or to wow me.


17. But I couldn't stop reading these novels. I only have the records for the books I read recently but both were finished within 24 hours each. Which is an accomplishment if you keep in mind that I spent most of the day visiting a friend. They were very hard to put away as soon as I started reading. The writing was very easy to read too.


18. Overall, this was a very enjoyable series. I've not that much experience with reading contemporary novels, but I did enjoy myself. I wasn't always to enthusiastic about the sometimes preachy undertone, but it didn't spoil all reading pleasure for me. I would definitely check out any new books written by Jamie Ayres.


(Bonus thought: Not specifically for this book, but isn't the title of this series, My So Called Afterlife, a major spoiler for 18 Things?)


18 Thoughts is the conclusion to the My So Called Afterlife-trilogy. You can also read my reviews for the other books: 18 Things and 18 Truths.




About Jamie Ayres:

Jamie Ayres writes young adult paranormal love stories by night and teaches young adults as a public school teacher by day.

When not at home on her laptop or at school, she can often be found at a local book store grabbing random children and reading to them. So far, she has not been arrested for this.

She lives in southwest Florida with her prince charming, two children (sometimes three based on how Mr. Ayres is acting), and a basset hound. She spent her youthful summers in Grand Haven, Michigan and this setting provided the inspiration for her debut novel, 18 Things.

She really does have grandmothers named Olga and Gay but unlike her heroine, she’s thankfully not named after either one of them. She loves lazy pajama days, the first page of a good book, stupid funny movies, and sharing stories with fantastic people like you. Visit her website at www.jamieayres.com


Find Jamie Ayres Online:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads



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review 2015-02-06 19:00
18 Things
18 Things - Jamie Ayres

During a sailing trip on Lake Michigan, Olga Gay Worontzoff's best friend - and for ever secret crush - Conner gets killed after being struck by lightning and falling into the cold water. Olga blames herself for his death and attempts suicide/takes an accidental overdose of sleeping pills. She's then sent to a psychiatrist who suggests she makes a list of 18 things to help her cope. Hence the title.


I read the second book in this series, 18 Truths, last year. I know that's not how you're supposed to read it, but I ended up with an ARC and found it intriguing enough to now want to read the first and also the third book. I do suggest though to start with the first book.


Having already read 18 Truths meant I was going into this book already knowing how it would end. However, it didn't bother me, although I was wondering how look it would have taken me to figure it out by myself.


I really enjoyed reading it. Not too much is happening, but I find that refreshing every now and then. I do need to warn people that can't stand any mention of religion in books though. This book suffered the least from it, but I noted in my review of the second book and also while reading the third book that it felt preachy at times (which is IMHO annoying, I like to be able to make up my own mind), but here it's more like a mention she's praying or going to church (which I don't mind reading).


In the end I think it was a good start to the series. It's not something I read a lot, but it was nice for a change.


18 Things is the first book in the My So Called Afterlife-series. The other books in this series are 18 Truths and 18 Thoughts (Review to come)


Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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review 2011-04-20 00:00
My So-Called Afterlife
My So-Called Afterlife - Tamsyn Murray Review: Lucy was murdered in a toilet and is now a ghost. Not the most fun position for teenage girl to be in, especially as no-one can hear her and its pretty boring. And then Jeremy comes in, can see and hear her, and wants to help her solve her murder. She meets lots of ghosts, like stuck up Kimberly, was-suicidal Hep and dreamboat Ryan. Jeremy then says that she needs to track down her killer, something Lucy isn’t particularly keen on. However she does, which is the basis of the book. The plot was original and funny. out of all the YA books out there, theres not too many that focus on ghosts. I liked the little subplots going on underneath Lucy’s adventure, such as getting Hep’s unfinished business finished, and the exorcism TV show. The romance wasn’t particularly bad or good, just being an average part of the book that I don’t think added or took anything away from the story.I liked the characters and their strong distinctive personalities. I never got mixed up with the characters, which is good, and each was well built and easy to imagine.I like the voice that was kept up throughout the book. It made Lucy easy to connect with and a little more real. The friendly narrative was easy to keep up with, explaining everything thats going on, and kept going at a pace fast enough for me to enjoy it.There didn’t seem to be much that really stood out for me. It was funny, light and a really easy read, but there was nothing that seemed to make it extremely amazing. The fact I read this a couple of days ago (weeks by the time this goes on the blog ^__^) and can only give you a quick summary should show this. This book is interesting and a good book, but theres nothing that really will stick in your mind forever. Maybe its due to its length-184 pages isn’t that much to pack a lot into. I would like to read the sequel though.Overall: Strength 3 tea to My So Called Afterlife, a quick read for anyone who likes ghosts and romance. Mainly for girly girls. If you’re looking for spooks and gore, this isn’t it.
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review 2011-03-22 00:00
Afterlife: My So-Called Phantom Lovelife
My So-Called Phantom Lovelife - Tamsyn Murray I won this from Goodreads, it's signed and I also got a small packet of sweets with the book's name on it. Thank you Tamsyn, you're awesome!

The book focuses on Skye, who can see ghosts. We first meet her when she's rowing a boat with her friends in the middle of the Serpentine Lake, Hyde Park. I found it weird reading a novel set in England, I'm used to American settings. Anyway, Skye meets a ghost there (after her friend nearly drowns) who died a few months ago. His name is Owen and they become good friends. Meanwhile her creepy ex boyfriend is now in her History classes, trying to woo her again. He's part of some cult who are like, really evil. Owen meets one of them and wants to become... more real... but he doesn't realise what the ritual will do to him.

My So-Called Phantom Love Life is a teen comedy-romance with a dash of suspense. I found plenty of quotes that made me giggle. Although it's aimed at the Younger YA group, I thoroughly enjoyed it. The ending wasn't one I was expecting and I would love to read a sequel to this. Must remember to buy the other books!
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