logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: tear-jerkers
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-04-17 03:14
WHO SHE WAS BY: STORMY SMITH
Who She Was - Stormy Smith

 

   There were so many different facets of Who She Was that I appreciated. I'm feeling listy so I'm going to just go ahead and change things up for this review a bit. Oh, Who She Was, how I enjoyed thee, let me LIST the ways...

 

  1. 1) The relationships.

good friends

 

Of course I will start with the most obvious example of this. Charlie and Trevor. Stormy Smith somehow blended two of my favorite contemporary romance themes, hate to love and best friends to romantic love, into some kind of hybrid with Charlie and Trevor in Who She Was. I loved that there was so much history between the two, and they already a kind of intimacy, but at the same time, after so much time had passed since they were last close, paired with growing up and dealing with all the curve balls life has thrown their way over the years, they were also like strangers coming together for the first time. I'm sure that you yourself have experienced that strange phenomenon of running into someone you used to be very close with when you were younger after a long time has passed. They're the same in a sense, but also this completely different person with new quirks, beliefs, issues, etc. that make them someone new too. I really enjoyed watching them get to know each other again, along with seeing clips from their past and seeing how much they have grown and changed and were still changing along the way.

 

 

Okay, so with the obvious out of the way, I also have to mention my appreciation for the side characters as well. I really dislike when characters simply exist to make the main characters shine even more. That was not something that happened in this story. Darcy and Sam were so great. I liked that they were important to this story in their own right, and they each also had their own little story going on in the background. They were growing and shining right along with the main characters. And bringing important and fresh perspectives along the way.

 

 

Lastly for this column, I would like to point out how very well done the hard relationships were done as well. The unhealthy ones that people struggle with throughout life. I feel like sometimes the severity of these relationships are muted in books like this where you expect the budding romance to be the main focus, and many times these other relationships are merely scratched at the surface to further the romantic plot. I appreciated the time taken to analyze these relationships in this story. The consequences, the burden, the way they can shape the person you are and are becoming. They are important too, and their voice was loud and clear.

 

 

2) The music.

 

beatsheart beat

 

 

Music, to me, has always been an important thing in my life. And not because I play it. I learned hot cross buns on the recorder and heart and soul on the piano, but I never quite made it into the musician category. Music is important to me for the sheer fact that it moves me. It has been forever linked with the way I feel. I have a huge appreciation for it, and my tastes are eclectic. So many times you can tell my mood simply by what I am playing in the moment. I have music that speaks to my rage on a bad day, music to soothe when I am feeling chill, music to amp me up and get me in that party kind of mood, etc. And music is linked to so many memories throughout my life. I vividly remember learning to roller-skate with my Walkman (yes, I am that old) to Billy Idol's Mony, Mony. I remember doing the Macarena, Hustle, and Electric slide at my middle school dances, all be it terribly because I have no rhythm but it has never stopped a gal from trying and having fun. Brown-eyed Girl is reminds me of summer nights grades 1-4 and the dad garage band that would play this song every year literally out of a garage during our block party. First concert to first kiss, so many amazing things have been imprinted in my brain to the sound of an unforgettable melody. So, yes, the music being such a core part of this story, and so very important to the characters, it was moving to me. I loved the way they sometimes communicated best with each other through their music. And ultimately, I really respected the way that they choose to define what the music meant to them and how they'd like it to fit in their lives.

 

 

3) Location, location, location.

 

des moines

I want to go

 

The author's personal connection to the setting of the story was apparent in this story. The passionate way she describes the place with such detail really enchants you. I love that you can have that very real connection with this story too. Like this is a place you can visit and see what the characters have seen, and maybe even feel what they were feeling about this place too. I can honestly say that Stormy Smith has successfully added another destination on my personal list of places I would like to visit one day, Des Moines, Iowa. So thank you for that, Stormy.

 

 

 

4) Giving a voice to a taboo subject.

 

talk

 

I don't want to be all spoilery here, so unfortunately I can't really talk much about this particular subject. BUT it is a reality. And I really respect the author for having this element in her story. One thing I truly believe in this life, is there are no taboo issues. That's not to say there aren't issues that require some extra thought and care, but I don't truly believe any subject should be kept quiet or not discussed. Discussion is a good thing. Even the difficult topics, my god ESPECIALLY those. THINK about these things, LEARN about these things, TALK about these things PLEASE. Maybe if we can do that more, some of these things would happen just a little less.  So, thank you, Stormy. Thank you for including this in your story. Thank you for taking such care and consideration with a difficult subject that many people shy away from.

 

 

wrap

 

 

So yeah, those are a few of the things I really liked about Who She Was. I did struggle a bit towards the end of the story when I felt like some of the things the characters were doing seemed uncharacteristically profound for them. I get that they were growing as people and learning, but it felt a little like them being suddenly hit with this deep wisdom beyond their years, rather than more steadily paced realizations, or maybe wo many huge breakthroughs didn't kind of seem to happen so close together that could have made it seem a little less out of character. It almost felt too neatly wrapped for me. I would have loved to see these characters maybe keep a few things unresolved, or rather just not resolved yet. I didn't think there was a need to have it all so prettily packaged at the end. But the flash forward at the very end was pretty gosh darn sweet and I was happy for that addition to the story. All in all this was a very enjoyable read, and I can't wait to see what this author comes up with next!

 

 

I received an ARC of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2016-11-14 04:56
DUALITY BY: J. KOWALLIS
Duality (The Enertia Trials Book 3) - J. Kowallis

 

 

  OHHMGEE!! I don't even know where to start with this. Duality WRECKED me. This story was brutal. Completely devastating. The Enertia Trials have never been sunshine and rainbows, by any means, but this book was especially savage. And I loved every page of it, even when it destroyed me.

 

 

list-my-feels

 

 

Duality picked up pretty much right where Encender left off. Our group of ragtag anti-heroes separated by wicked circumstance and fighting tooth and nail to get back to each other. The thing I really loved was that each person was going through so much externally and internally, it had kept me glued to the pages throughout the whole thing.

Reggie...oh gawd Reggie. My heart ached for her. Things were so dark for Reggie, but one thing that I felt never truly wavered, was her incredible strength and her deep seeded hope that the future could hold some light.

 

 

stars-shine-through-the-darkness

 

 

You could really tell just how much has happened in the two previous books because it all hung like a weight around Nate's shoulders in this one. I could feel the burden he carried. Constantly keeping it together and relentlessly moving forward in pursuit of the only thing left that truly mattered to him, Reggie. While he's always been the cool-headed guy taking charge, you started to see the cracks in this tough exterior. The pressure seemed to be breaking through in waves. It ended up making him more of a wild card than we've previously seen. And it amped up the anxiety big time. I kept trying to prepare myself for him to completely lose his shit all together.

 

 

annie-are-you-okay

 

Ransley...holy hell. I LOVE Ransley. She is the ultimate wild card, and I adore that about her. It's her unfathomable amount of passion that drives her and while it can definitely back fire (LITERALLY), it always comes from her heart. She isn't someone that gets close to people easily, but she is someone that would fight to the end of the Earth for you once you do break past the prickly exterior. As horrific as Reggie's struggles were, my heart freaking SHATTERED for Ransley. I just can't. I still can't even process what happened with her. I worry for her, I really do, maybe more than anyone else right now. I also have to say how absolutely PERFECT her ability is for her. This wild, ferocious, all consuming, and utterly beautiful thing. This girl is on fire!!!

 

 

ransley

 

 

All I can say is thank goodness for Roy. I feel like he was a solid anchor through this tale. He really stepped up and tried to hold things together while all hell was breaking loose around him. He was the yin to Ransely's yang, there's no arguing that. Which ultimately left Ransley questioning their relationship even more. I also think Roy has one of the COOLEST abilities I have EVER heard of. I love the idea of corporeal fission...imagine how much you could accomplish with that ability?! All the books you could read!!!

 

 

read-all-the-books

 

 

Okay, so besides the AMAZING line-up of characters, this story was a pulse-pounding, anxiety inducing, heart-breaking roller-coaster ride that you won't want to end. It is EVERYTHING I want in a dystopian book especially. It is vicious, ruthless and so utterly raw, it will scrape against your nerve endings and you'll keep wanting more. I can't recommend this series enough! Each new addition has topped the last, even when I thought there was no way that was even possible! Be forewarned though, this book will gut you. It will tear you apart and turn you into a bloodthirsty animal by the end. I can't wait to see what happens next, for so many reasons, but especially after that heart-wrenching ending!

 

 

noooo-gif

 

 

I also want to get personal and even more fan-girly for a quick moment. A million squees and thanks to J. Kowallis for so many things, the beautiful paperback copy of this book for review (which totally floored me to see my quote on the cover!), the super sweet shout out in the Acknowledgments, and more than anything, for being such a kind, cool, and totally bad-ass story teller that weaves these deliciously addictive tales that I can't get enough of! Thank you, a million times, thank you!

 

 

fangirling

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2016-03-03 03:41
CAUGHT BY HER BY: GL CHAPPLE
Caught by Her - G.L. Chapple

 

I was so excited to get an early copy of this book! I quite enjoyed Freed by Him, and that ending had me desperate for this book, to see how it all turned out! This book was great! I have to give it some major props for actually making me shed a tear. I am not really a crier, but this story got me right in the feels!

 

help im feeling

 

Caught by Her started off surprising me. I was honestly pretty shocked that Nate started acting so standoffish about his and Lena's relationship. I mean, I understood his reasoning, to an extent, but I thought it was a jerk move, especially considering how he pushed Lena to get closer to him in the first place. I felt bad for Lena having to deal with his sudden emotional distance. I ended up being pretty darn impressed with Lena though. She had really grown as a character from the previous book. I truthfully thought that her vulnerability in this book made her stronger than ever, and I appreciated that.

 

While I was rooting for these crazy kids to figure things out, something spectacular started happening, some of the secondary characters really came to life. There was some really interesting things going down on the sidelines, it definitely made me want to see some of them step into the limelight next *cough* Marcus *cough* Just sayin. I thought Lena and Nate's story ended perfectly. I'm honestly REALLY HOPING that Chapple continues on with this set of characters! I'd love to read more about them.

I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2016-02-01 04:28
WHEN I GROW UP I WANT TO BE A PROSTITUTE BY: MELISA SAMIA COLLINS
when i grow up I want to be a Prostitute 2nd edition: Stories of Broken Promises and Shattered Dreams - Angie Alaya,MeLisa Samia Collins

 

  Okay, so if you're anything like me, you read that title and went "What the hell?!". No BS, when I first saw it, before I read the blurb, I totally thought it was going to be some sort of erotica book lol. That is no where close to what this book really is. While their is some graphic, and honestly, hard to stomach subject matter in this book, I think it was BRILLIANT. I really respect Collins as a person, and a writer too, for telling this story.

 

 

As hard as it is to think about subjects like child abuse, rape, drug addiction, etc. these are things that NEED to be acknowledged. These are things that affect people. REAL PEOPLE. Maybe even someone YOU know, will meet one day, or maybe even you. I read this statistic not terribly long ago, I can't remember when exactly, or where, but I will never forget what it said...in college 1 in every 3 women are victims of sexual assault. 1 in 3!!! This was devastating to me, as a woman, a mother of a daughter, and a human being. And as soul crushing as hearing these things, or reading about the atrocities that happened in this story are, maybe this acknowledgement, this dialog, this story, just maybe it will help someone. It may not save anyone from having something awful happen to them, but at the very least it gives you a closer look at some of the warning signs to look for.

 

 

This was a story about 3 young girls that were assaulted early in their life, and the impacts that it had into their adult years. Three very different girls, with very different situations, and outcomes. Things get pretty real right away, there is no easing you into this tale, which I think was very well done. I was sympathetic to each of the girls right away, It worked well in forming that bond with the characters and had me desperately needing to know what happened with them next. At first I was kind of wondering why the Author decided to tell three different stories, but there was a very good reason for her doing so, and I was honestly surprised with how they seamlessly entertwined after awhile.The POV switches were PERFECTION. I just feel the need to glorify that tidbit after having struggled so much with that in some of my other recent reads.

 

This story is pretty fast paced, and 100% engaging. Once I was into it, I had a hard time putting it down! I also thought this author took a lot of care with this subject material, she didn't shy away from harsh truths, but she also didn't make it so graphic that it was a struggle to get through. It was just a fine balancing act that she nailed from start to finish. I am so surprised that this book does not have more reviews. It kind of hurts my heart a little. But considering the title had me initially shying away from it, I could see why it might not grab more people that way. I'm so glad I looked inside for more, because this was a GREAT book. I get that this story might not be for everyone, it's not all sunshine and puppy dogs, but it was brilliantly done and I'm thoroughly impressed by it. When I Grow Up I Want To Be A Prostitute gets a high recommendation from me.

 

 

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2015-09-20 18:17
NOCTE BY: COURTNEY COLE
NOCTE (The Nocte Trilogy Book 1) - Courtney Cole

 

     Well that was one hell of a ride! Nocte was quite the experience. I really liked the alternating points of view between Calla and Finn! I thought that really ended up accentuating the major plot twist and made it that much more mind boggling. I think there was a lot of thought and care put into each element of this story, the subtle hints that something was off, the beautiful and haunting setting, the careful words that each character said and thought, it all cumulated to make one big stereogram like image that you had to uncover with laser like focus.

 

 

    I thought the setting was outstanding. I loved the feeling of seclusion, and being surrounded by such gorgeous yet dangerous things. Add in the extra bonus of it being a funeral home that they lived in, so you had that unnerving, constant submersion in quite literally living with death. It was almost as powerful as the fact that the characters were also dealing with the crushing loss factor of having death strike in their own family.

 

   Calla and Finn were so intriguing. Twins, I think, are so interesting in that they seem to have such an extra special connection, and you're not quite sure how deep that connection can actually go. I enjoyed the contrast between the two, with Finn's struggle with his sanity and guarding his secrets, and Calla's inner turmoil over wanting to live while being so heavily burdened by death, guilt, and wanting to uncover the truth and help her ailing brother. Dare was a curious addition to the story that I was initially weary of. The first meetings between Dare and Calla felt kind of insta-love and that's not really my jam. But ultimately their relationship developed slowly and by the end I understood everything and think it all was done perfectly.

 

   That ending was explosive! Everything was leading to this ending and it rocks your world! I have to say that I did end up having a good inclination as to what the huge revelation would be, but I really don't fell like it lessened the blow anymore when it came. I still teared up a little at the sheer devastation. But man, oh man, those last few paragraphs! I knew that there would be a little more to the story with Dare and Calla's relationship, but I really didn't expect to be left dangling off the edge, over powered by my NEED to know what the hell is going on with them now!

 

 

It was definitely something BIG but we are left with nothing but pressing questions that need to be answered. I was already planning on reading the second book, but that killer ending just made it so I will be getting to it sooner rather than later!  

 

    I received a copy of this book from Badass Marketing in exchange for an honest review

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?