Google+ YA Romantics

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Hot Off the Presses: New YA Releasing August 4-10

Hot Off the Presses -- brand new YA releases!

Welcome to Hot Off the Presses!  

Tuesday is book release day, so every Tuesday I tell you about all the great new YA books you can buy in the week to come. If you're a reviewer, you can also link your blog or Goodreads reviews of any YA book publishing in the current month so we can all check them out!

NEW August giveaway! This month's winner can pick any book up to $15 on either Amazon (for US winner) or The Book Depository (for international winner.)

Enter by linking reviews of YA books that release in August or by commenting on other people's linked reviews.

Hot Off the Presses aims to include every traditionally published YA book. Please let me know about books that came out this week that I might have missed! Some titles may have different release dates outside the US.

Click on the photos to get to each book's Goodreads page!


Lifeless Prisoners of Breedonk Heartbreakers
Lifeless by Adrianne Strickland (Flux)
Prisoners of Breendonk by James M. Deem (HMH)
Heartbreakers by Ali Novak (Sourcebooks)


Not After Everything Daughter of Dusk Trouble is a Friend of Mine
Not After Everything by Michelle Levy (Dial)
Daughter of Dusk (Midnight Thief #2) by Livia Blackburn
Trouble is a Friend of Mine by Stephanie Tromly (Kathy Dawson)


Girl at the Center of the World Most Likely to Succeed Crystal Kingdom
The Girl at the Center of the World by Austin Aslan (Wendy Lamb)
Most Likely to Succeed (Superlatives #3) by Jennifer Echols (Simon Pulse)
Crystal Kingdom (Kanin Chronicles #3) by Amanda Hocking (St Martins)


Con Academy Never Always Sometimes Of Dreams and Rust
Con Academy by Joe Schreiber (HMH)
Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid (Harlequin)
Of Dreams and Rust by Sarah Fine (Margaret McElderry)


Nightmare Charade Stick Public Enemies
Nightmare Academy (Arkwell Academy #3) by Mindee Arnett (Tor)
Stick by Michael Harmon )Knopf)
Public Enemies (Immortal Game #2) by Ann Aguirre


Awake While You Were Gone From Where I Watch You
Awake by Natasha Preston (Sourcebooks)
While You Were Gone (Duplexity #2) by Amy K Nichols (Knopf)
From Where I Watch You by Shannon Grogan (Soho)


This Broken Wondrous World After the Red Rain How to say I Love You Out Loud
This Broken Wondrous World by Jon Skovron (Viking)
After the Red Rain by Barry Lyga, Peter Facinelli, Robert DiFranco (Little, Brown)
How To Say I Love You Out Loud by Karole Cozzo (Swoon)


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Monday, August 3, 2015

Just Finished Reading .... The Boy Most Likely To by Huntley Fitzpatrick

The Boy Most Likely To (My Life Next Door #2)
by Huntley Fitzpatrick
To be published by Dial Books
on August 18, 2015
Synopsis from Goodreads: Tim Mason was The Boy Most Likely To find the liquor cabinet blindfolded, need a liver transplant, and drive his car into a house. Alice Garrett was The Girl Most Likely To . . . well, not date her little brother’s baggage-burdened best friend, for starters. For Tim, it wouldn’t be smart to fall for Alice. For Alice, nothing could be scarier than falling for Tim. But Tim has never been known for making the smart choice, and Alice is starting to wonder if the “smart” choice is always the right one. When these two crash into each other, they crash hard. Then the unexpected consequences of Tim’s wild days come back to shock him. He finds himself in a situation that isn’t all it appears to be, that he never could have predicted . . . but maybe should have. And Alice is caught in the middle.
My take:  I've had a lot of discussions with fellow bloggers about reading expectations and how they can shape a reading experience. It's disconcerting to expect a certain kind of story and then get something different.

That's what happened to me with The Boy Most Likely To. And I'd like to say right off that my expectations were completely my fault. I expected The Boy Most Likely To to be a swoony romance in the same vein as My Life Next Door.

That's not entirely the case and again -- my fault. I think the synopsis (above) is an accurate representation of the story. But I guess I had built up certain expectations in my mind. So while I did like The Boy Most Likely To, it took me some time to shift my mental gears around and adjust to the loss of the story I thought I was getting and warm up to the one I got.

First off, while Tim and Alice do have the potential for fabulous odd couple chemistry (he's the recovering train wreck, she's the tightly-wound control freak) the Tim-Alice romance is really not the main focus of the story. Their relationship is so slow burn that ... is there a word for a notch below slow burn? Faint simmer? That's what this felt like.

I'd call The Boy Most Likely To more of a "finding yourself" story with romance as a subplot. For most of the story, both Tim and Alice are very distracted and their relationship is pretty much at a standstill. Things eventually do heat up between them but it does take a while. In theory, I think it's a good thing that Tim is getting himself together before getting together with Alice, but if you're expecting a super-swoony book, you won't get that until the very end.

The dual POV was also a bit jarring to me -- a lot of switching back and forth, sometimes a few times within the same chapter. I was saved by the fact that each POV had a different font. I think MLND was all from Sam's POV and I think I might have preferred this from Tim's POV only. I mean, both characters have a lot they're dealing with, and Alice is a fascinating, prickly character, but I think it was hard for her personal issues to compete with his.

Now to the elephant in the room: those Unexpected Consequences That Tim Has to Deal With. Yes, this did help Tim's character growth, but overall I was really on the fence about this aspect of the story. I thought some of the scenes in that plotline were funny and touching, but the whole thing took the story in an unexpected direction. If you want spoilers, you can read them under protection on my Goodreads review.

For the most part, I enjoyed The Boy Most Likely To. The storyline definitely wasn't what I expected but I'm always glad when a book can surprise me. I may re-read the two back to back now that I know what's to come.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Freebie Friday: ARC Grab Bag



Happy Friday!


The winner of this week's giveaway will get to choose from a selection of July and August ARCs.

Want to know what they are? Check out my Instagram (link on right sidebar...)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend of reading!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Page to Screen: Paper Towns



Confession: I often avoid seeing movies that are based books that I like. My book club and I had planned to see Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (which I still haven't read).  However, that movie left the theater right before we were due to meet, so the obvious thing to do was to go and see:


I was worried. I read Paper Towns some years ago and really liked it, but the casting had me concerned. That supermodel was all wrong to play Margot, and if Quentin were really that adorable looking, the book would obviously have turned out a different way.

I went into the movie with no expectations, and ... I really liked it a lot. I thought it captured the spirit of the book and I was happy that there were changes. The Harry Potter movies aside, I think the most successful book-to-movie adaptations are the ones that aren't afraid to actually adapt the book a bit.

What's different about the movie?

If you don't want to know what was changed from page to screen, you should stop reading here. If you haven't read the book, this won't make much sense to you, but carry on unless you are afraid of spoilers.

No Honeybunnies
I was really happy that Ben's character was toned down a bit. Thankfully, there were no mentions of honeybunnies or all the different bunnies he was always going on about. On screen, Ben was definitely channeling Anthony Michael Hall in every John Hughes movie, but I have no complaints about that.

Q gets cuter 
I can understand that in a movie targeted to a mainstream teen crowd, Quentin had to be more cute and less awkward than in the book. One review I read called the movie version of Quentin "unsurprising" and "average." That's harsh, but I sort of see the point. In the book, since Q is the narrator, his voice is stronger and I he comes off quirkier and smarter. 

More Girls
Watching this on screen made me realize that Paper Towns is a fairly guy-centric book. Margo is pretty much a MPDG, and all the other girls in the book have very minor roles. While I really loved that the movie emphasized the great friendship between Q, Ben and Radar, I was happy that Radar's girlfriend Angela got a bigger role in the film. 
P.S. I was wrong about Cara Delevingne. She made a great Margo.

Ninja Night
I loved seeing the prank sequence come to life on the screen. Sadly, there was no trip to Sea World, but I still thought this aspect was fantastic and otherwise true to the literary version.

Road trip 
Who doesn't love a road trip? I thought the small changes made to the trip were really smart and added some needed suspense and humor.

Pok√©mon Sequence 
Hilarious. And exactly right for these characters if they're high school seniors in 2015.

The Ending
Really, really liked the way the ending was done. I was really afraid that there'd be some (highlight for spoiler) completely inappropriate Hollywood happy ending, (end spoiler) but I really liked the very slight changes to the ending. 

Have you seen the movie? Read the book? If so, tell me your thoughts!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Hot Off the Presses: New YA Releasing July 28-August 3

Hot Off the Presses -- brand new YA releases!

Welcome to Hot Off the Presses!  

Tuesday is book release day, so every Tuesday I tell you about all the great new YA books you can buy in the week to come. If you're a reviewer, you can also link your blog or Goodreads reviews of any YA book publishing in the current month so we can all check them out!

LAST week of the July giveaway! This month's winner can pick any book up to $15 on either Amazon (for US winner) or The Book Depository (for international winner.)

Enter by linking reviews of YA books that release in July or by commenting on other people's linked reviews.

Hot Off the Presses aims to include every traditionally published YA book. Please let me know about books that came out this week that I might have missed! Some titles may have different release dates outside the US.

Click on the photos to get to each book's Goodreads page!

Oblivion Every Last Breath I Knew You Were Trouble
Oblivion (Nevermore #3) by Kelly Creagh (Atheneum)
Every Last Breath (Dark Elements #3) by Jennifer L. Armentrout (Harlequin)
I Knew You Were Trouble (Jessie Jefferson #2) by Paige Toon (Simon & Schuster)

Blind Wish All We Have is Now What You Left Behind
The Blind Wish (Jinni Wars #2) by Amber Lough (Random House)
All We Have is Now by Lisa Schoeder (Scholastic)
What You Left Behind by Jessica Verdi (Sourcebooks)


Adrift Thirteen Chairs Her Cold Revenge
Adrift by Paul Griffin (Scholastic)
Thirteen Chairs by Dave Shelton (David Fickling)
Her Cold Revenge byErin Johnson (Switch Press)


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Monday, July 27, 2015

Just Finished Reading: Six Impossible Things by Fiona Wood

Six Impossible Things
by Fiona Wood
To be published in the US on August 11, 2015
by Poppy

Synopsis from Goodreads: Fourteen-year-old nerd-boy Dan Cereill is not quite coping with a reversal of family fortune, moving house, new school hell, a mother with a failing wedding cake business, a just-out gay dad, and an impossible crush on the girl next door. His life is a mess, but for now he's narrowed it down to just six impossible things...

My take: Sometimes I complain about young YA, and Poppy does seem to be an imprint that puts out a fair amount of it.

While I would call Six Impossible Things a YA book that does skew a bit young (it features a main character who's not yet fifteen) I found it enjoyable all the same. Dan's father has just come out and left the family, and he and his mother are forced to move to a decrepit old house that has been left to his mom by a relative. Dan's next-door neighbor is the fascinating Estelle, and when he discovers a connection between their attics, he's able to get a unique perspective on Estelle and her life. After all this upheaval, he makes a list of ... you guessed it: six impossible things he'd like to accomplish.

I must confess that I thought Wildlife, Wood's companion book to this one, was a stronger book with more emotional depth and more interesting narrative aspects. But Six Impossible Things was sweet and charming in its own understated way. It felt a little like an Australian John Green book - you know, awkward boy pines after unattainable girl and grows up a little in the process. Since Dan also has a depressed/dumped mother, I'd call it Paper Towns meets About a Boy.

If you're not a fan of contemporary YA this may seem a little too quiet for you. If you're a fan of the awkward male narrator and/or of Aussie fiction, give this one a go!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Freebie Friday: July/August ARC Grab Bag!



Happy Friday!


The winner of this week's giveaway will get to choose from a selection of July and August ARCs.

Want to know what they are? Check out my Instagram (link on right sidebar or search jenryland.)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend of reading!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
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