Friday, December 28, 2012

Mini Reviews # 1

You might have noticed the astounding number of reviews on the blog lately. I simply didn't have the time to write full reviews and get them posted. That let me get way behind on my Netgalley titles and reviews in general. I've also had a few titles I haven't had the chance to review in many months. So that brought on the idea to give short reviews of those titles in a Mini Reviews post series. Starting today with a few contemporary romance titles.

Between Here And Forever by Elizabeth Scott

Abbey has a plan. Caring and ambitious sister that she is, Abbey wants to win the beautiful boy she's seen in the hospital to help her wake up her sister Tess out of a coma - and that's what the story is mostly about. That boy is Eli. He is the perfect candidate to make every girl's dreams come true. He is charming and selfless.
Now Abbey wants him to flirt with Tess and bring her back. But of course her plan doesn't work out as it should. And Eli is falling for her instead of Tess just as Abbey can't deny her feelings for Eli.
All the time we've got an unwanted- quite bothersome-kind of love triangle between the three of them. Tess' ghost always floating above their heads and Abbey refusing to acknowledge her true feelings.
Tess is a difficult character and although she isn’t really present, she’s still there all the time, influencing Abbey’s moves. What we learn about Tess in the course of BETWEEN HERE AND FOREVER is a complicated story, a mixture of lies, secrets, sadness and wrong intentions.
And then Eli's got issues himself that make him insecure about his every move. So with their individual problems combined, his and Abbey's relationship isn't as easy as it should be. They are two very interesting characters and I really liked to see them growing closer with each heart-warming talk.

3/5 *** BETWEEN HERE AND FOREVER- A slightly romantic and thoughtful read about finding love and learning lessons in the most unexpected place and time. 

Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publishing Date: May 24th 2011
Length: 256 pages
Keywords: YA, contemporary romance, secrets, coma, hospital
Source: Simon & Schuster Galley Grab
Goodreads Summary
Between Here And Forever Excerpt
Author's Homepage

 Sometimes It Happens by Lauren Barnholdt
A summer can change everything. Especially friendships and lovers. When Hannah’s best friend Ava leaves town, she can’t help but fall in love with her best friend’s boyfriend. It’s a thrill and a dilemma at the same time. Lauren Barnholdt did a really good job picturing these ambivalent emotions going along with a situation like Hannah and Noah’s. We get a great contrast between the things you are supposed to do, you want to do and you do in the end.
Interweaving flashbacks and present events in an engaging narration, that very well increases the reader’s anticipation, the story inevitably leads towards the peak of Hannah and Noah’s affair. The outcome which is addressed several times. But then…pouf. Lauren Barnholdt didn’t achieve to create a culmination point worth all the anticipation due to a lack of details. In the end the reader is just left with all that wondering and waiting what would really happen between the two.
SOMETIMES IT HAPPENS is full of relationship drama of main protagonists and secondary characters. It was enlightening to be thrown into the whole. But the story itself had a few flaws and wasn’t that thrilling as I’d imagined it to be in the end.

3,5/5 ***/* SOMETIMES IT HAPPENS – An enjoyable summer read about a lot of feelings and fun that convinces with its writing and characters.

Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publishing Date: July 12th 2011
Length: 320 pages
Keywords: YA, contemporary romance, falling in love with your best friend's boyfriend, friendship
Source: Simon & Schuster Galley Grab 

The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder

Two hours was all it took me to read THE DAY BEFORE. Such a small amount of time for a lot of work put into a book. The story was easy to read, because the formatting is very loose and it is written in verse. Each chapter is only a few pages long, with a headline comparable to the title of a poem. It’s fascinating how only a few words have the power to form such a rhyming story like THE DAY BEFORE and it surprised me that I actually liked my first verse novel.
The problematic- familiar and emotional- situations of protagonists Amber and Cade were supported well by the writing, but the shortness of the story itself made it difficult for them to be characters that’d stick with me for a long time.
Amber’s and Cade’s feelings are part of the poetic verse. They are rash and their justification grows out of the moment they are born. It isn’t very realistic to form such a strong bond in only a few hours, but that’s poetry, making things possible that aren’t in a world with gravity.
So they've got one day before everything changes. Amber and Cade make the best out of it. They aren’t alone in their fears anymore and I just love how much comfort they could give each other. Maybe there doesn’t always need to be sense and consideration, time and knowledge to feel connected to another person in such a deep way. The problems troubling the two teens really felt important and I wish I would have had more time to follow them and their growing friendship and love story.

3,5/5 ***/* THE DAY BEFORE – Poetic & admirable. Deep in meaning, swift and light in form and style!

Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publishing Date: June 28th  2011
Length: 320 pages
Keywords: YA, contemporary romance, loss, fear, love, verse
Source: Simon & Schuster Galley Grab 
Goodreads Summary
The Day Before Excerpt 
Author's Homepage

More mini reviews coming soon!

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