Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

25081261Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: January 10th, 2017
Publisher: Random House BFYR
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mythology, Romance, Siblings

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BLURB:

Marinda has kissed dozens of boys. They all die afterward. It s a miserable life, but being a visha kanya a poison maiden is what she was created to do. Marinda serves the Raja by dispatching his enemies with only her lips as a weapon.

Until now, the men she was ordered to kiss have been strangers, enemies of the kingdom. Then she receives orders to kiss Deven, a boy she knows too well to be convinced he needs to die. She begins to question who she s really working for. And that is a thread that, once pulled, will unravel more than she can afford to lose.

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Review: I See You by Clare Mackintosh

31951280I See You by Clare Mackintosh

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Publication Date: November 29th, 2016
Publisher: Berkely Books
Point of View: 1st & 3rd Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 14+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Adult, Mystery

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BLURB:

Every morning and evening, Zoe Walker takes the same route to the train station, waits at a certain place on the platform, finds her favorite spot in the car, never suspecting that someone is watching her… It all starts with a classified ad. During her commute home one night, while glancing through her local paper, Zoe sees her own face staring back at her; a grainy photo along with a phone number and a listing for a website called FindTheOne.com.

Other women begin appearing in the same ad, a different one every day, and Zoe realizes they ve become the victims of increasingly violent crimes including murder. With the help of a determined cop, she uncovers the ad s twisted purpose…A discovery that turns her paranoia into full-blown panic. Zoe is sure that someone close to her has set her up as the next target.

And now that man on the train the one smiling at Zoe from across the car could be more than just a friendly stranger. He could be someone who has deliberately chosen her and is ready to make his next move. Continue reading

Review: What Light by Jay Asher

29093326What Light by Jay Asher

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Publication Date: October 18th, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Christmas

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BLURB:

From Jay Asher, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Thirteen Reasons Why, comes a romance that will break your heart, but soon have you believing again. . . .

Sierra’s family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it’s a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other.

Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.

By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb’s past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love. Continue reading

Review: Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland

28186273Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Publication Date: October 4th, 2016
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Point of View: 1st Person & Masculine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Coming of Age

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BLURB:

Henry Page has never been in love. He fancies himself a hopeless romantic, but the slo-mo, heart palpitating, can’t-eat-can’t-sleep kind of love that he’s been hoping for just hasn’t been in the cards for him—at least not yet. Instead, he’s been happy to focus on his grades, on getting into a semi-decent college and finally becoming editor of his school newspaper. Then Grace Town walks into his first period class on the third Tuesday of senior year and he knows everything’s about to change.

Grace isn’t who Henry pictured as his dream girl—she walks with a cane, wears oversized boys’ clothes, and rarely seems to shower. But when Grace and Henry are both chosen to edit the school paper, he quickly finds himself falling for her. It’s obvious there’s something broken about Grace, but it seems to make her even more beautiful to Henry, and he wants nothing more than to help her put the pieces back together again. And yet, this isn’t your average story of boy meets girl. Krystal Sutherland’s brilliant debut is equal parts wit and heartbreak, a potent reminder of the bittersweet bliss that is first love. Continue reading

Review: Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

28587957Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Publication Date: October 11th, 2016
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Point of View: 1st Person & Alternative
Recommended Age: 14+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Adult, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Racism, Law, Family

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BLURB:

Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene?

Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime. Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy. Conflicted by Kennedy’s counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family—especially her teenage son—as the case becomes a media sensation. As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other’s trust, and come to see that what they’ve been taught their whole lives about others—and themselves—might be wrong.

With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion—and doesn’t offer easy answers. Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game. Continue reading

Review: Amy Chelsea Stacie Dee by Mary G. Thompson

25226082Amy Chelsea Stacie Dee by Mary G. Thompson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Publication Date: October 11th 2016
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Family

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BLURB:

A bittersweet homecoming holds dark secrets in this heart-wrenching story of loss, love, and survival for readers of Room.

When sixteen-year-old Amy returns home, she can’t tell her family what’s happened to her. She can’t tell them where she’s been since she and her best friend, her cousin Dee, were kidnapped six years ago—who stole them from their families or what’s become of Dee. She has to stay silent because she’s afraid of what might happen next, and she’s desperate to protect her secrets at any cost.

Amy tries to readjust to life at “home,” but nothing she does feels right. She’s a stranger in her own family, and the guilt that she’s the one who returned is insurmountable. Amy soon realizes that keeping secrets won’t change what’s happened, and they may end up hurting those she loves the most. She has to go back in order to move forward, risking everything along the way. Amy Chelsea Stacie Dee is a riveting, affecting story of loss and hope. Continue reading

Ultra Negative Review: Spontaneous by Aaron Starmer

23587115Spontaneous by Aaron Starmer

My rating: 1 of 5 stars
Received: Random House Canada
Publication Date: August 30th 2016
Publisher: Dutton
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

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BLURB:

Mara Carlyle’s senior year is going as normally as could be expected, until—wa-bam!—fellow senior Katelyn Ogden explodes during third period pre-calc.

Katelyn is the first, but she won’t be the last teenager to blow up without warning or explanation. As the seniors continue to pop like balloons and the national eye turns to Mara’s suburban New Jersey hometown, the FBI rolls in and the search for a reason is on.

Whip-smart and blunt, Mara narrates the end of their world as she knows it while trying to make it to graduation in one piece. It’s an explosive year punctuated by romance, quarantine, lifelong friendship, hallucinogenic mushrooms, bloggers, ice cream trucks, “Snooze Button™,” Bon Jovi, and the filthiest language you’ve ever heard from the President of the United States. Continue reading