Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Top Reads of 2015 ~Post 3

Ok, I decided to do a second post today with my top reads, that way I can post my top 5 reads on New Years Day.

When Fall Breaks by Julie Solano and Tracy Justice
Kaitlyn Woodley is a beautiful, determined, high school senior, who embraces her small-town roots and country life. She’s studious, musically gifted, and headed for a successful career in swimming. Aside from a catty group of jealous girls, who taunt her mercilessly, Kaitlyn’s dreams are well within her reach. That is, until she becomes tangled up with the handsome Pistol Black, a rodeo cowboy, who not only turns every girl’s head in the county, but also turns her perfect world upside down.
Kaitlyn’s overprotective twin brother and best friends, begin to see signs that make them question Pistol’s subtle control over her. As secrets are unveiled, they intervene to save her from a possible path of destruction. To their surprise, when best friend Brody steps in to protect her, newly discovered feelings complicate an already volatile situation. Soon, everything begins to change. Old feelings die, new feelings emerge, and the once beautiful path they had traveled over summer, begins to alter with the season.
Will Kaitlyn’s closest friends be able to pull her from the destructive path she’s been led to follow? As the winds of time blast through their lives, the loyalty toward their best friend will remain stronger than ever. They are determined to protect her, even if one of them ends up getting hurt in the hunt for safety. One thing is for certain, none of this close group of friends will be left untouched when fall breaks.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

The Dead of Winter by Julie Solano and Tracy Justice
*This is the second book of the Seasons of Jefferson and is not a standalone* 
For one group of teens, a cruel, twisted fall changed everything. Relationships. Trust. Destiny. Now, living with the harsh consequences of their choices, is there hope to mend what fall has left broken?
Find out as the story continues.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review of both Books
When Fall Breaks is so good! It kept me on my toes the entire time with the characters and everything that happens. I felt like there was so much suspense, but it was also light. The characters were awesome and funny at times. There is a cliff-hanger (it was awesome though the way it kept me suspended), but I read this novel closer to when the second book released, but I was still left hanging for a few weeks. This is a wonderful read. The Dead of Winter picks up where When Fall Breaks leaves off, and my attention was grabbed again with all of the suspense on a fourteen hour road trip in November. I was left hanging with the ending again, and am curious if there is going to be a third book. If so, I know that I am going to read it.

American Girl on Saturn by Nikki Godwin
The summer after graduation is supposed to be that first real taste of freedom - but not for eighteen-year-old Chloe Branson. Just as that breeze of freedom is making its way into her galaxy, her secret-service-agent dad drops a meteor-sized bomb of bad news on her and her sisters. An attempt has been made on the lives of Canadian boyband, Spaceships Around Saturn, during their USA tour, and the guys have to go into hiding ASAP. The only problem? In the midst of the crisis and media frenzy, their dad volunteered to hide the guys...in their house.
Six-year-old Emery is as ecstatic as any self-proclaimed Saturnite would be, but Chloe and her seventeen-year-old sister Aralie watch their summer plans crash and burn like a falling star. The SAS guys aren't happy with the situation, either. Bad boy Jules picks fights with Aralie about everything from his Twitter followers to his laundry, and heart-throb Benji can't escape Emery's fangirlisms for more than three minutes.
But after the super-cute Milo kisses Chloe during a game of hide-and-seek, she finally understands what Emery means when she talks about SAS being "out of this world." If this is what Saturn feels like, Chloe doesn't want to come back to Earth.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
I seriously loved American Girl on Saturn. I'm putting a picture that I took of my copy of AGoS (on the right), as I put over 50 colored tabs in it, marking quotes or things that I want to remember, or just things that I found hilarious. This was one book that had me laughing through almost the entire book and I don't think I ever really expected a romance to pop out of this book. I've read Nikki Godwin's other series, The Drenaline Surf series, and I just absolutely love all her books. Seriously, if you haven't read them, go read them.

Choose Me by Heidi McLaughlin

Two brothers.
One woman.
One son.
One choice.
Lives ripped apart, shattered and rebuilt.
Evan and Nate Archer: Brothers, best friends, warriors and now enemies. Both in love with the same woman. Both determined to fight for what they want.
Nate Archer promised to protect Ryley Clarke in the event Evan didn’t make it back. It’s a promise between brothers since the early days of basic training. Nate never considered that his feelings, long buried since high school, would resurface and grow stronger.
Evan Archer wants answers. He wants someone to pay. After being gone for an unprecedented amount of time, nothing is making sense now that he’s home. Most of all, he can't understand how his brother ended up engaged to his fiancĂ©e. Evan is determined to uncover the mystery, and win back his family.
The Archers are about to fight dirty.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
I seriously am on team Evan. No matter what, even with having Nate's side of the story, I just couldn't grasp it. I am on Evan's side and feel bad for him. I loved this book. I loved the continuation of the Archer Brothers and Ryley. I hated the conflict that the brothers faced and that Ryley had to make a choice. The conflicts that are presented are well written. I seriously love these books. It is very easy to fall in love with Heidi McLaughlin's characters, Evan was no exception. And I guess I should include Nate in with that statement. If you haven't read these books, I suggest you do so. 

Stop! By Alison G. Bailey
Every life has a different path full of sharp turns, smooth curves, and steep drop offs.
Hollis Murphy has a plan—college, career, boyfriend, love, marriage, family. A predictable, normal life. She’s on track until an outside force causes her to crash and burn. They call it an accident, because that’s the only word they know to explain what happens to her. It helps everyone move on with their lives, except for Hollis. She holds on to the belief that she’s been targeted for a reason.
Risher Stevenson is intelligent, caring, sweet, and the hottest boy Hollis has ever laid eyes on. He fits perfectly into her original plan for a normal life. Everyone loves him.
Benton Daniels is intelligent, caring, sweet, and the bravest boy Hollis has ever met. He doesn’t fit into her life but gives it purpose and makes it extraordinary. Everyone hates him.
One is bullied. One is tormented. All are judged. How will it STOP?
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
I absolutely loved this book! The characters are awesome and I just wanted to cry for them! They each have their own problems/situations that have to be dealt with. 
I was talking to Alison G. Bailey while I had been reading "Stop!", and here is some of my messages about the book. These totally describe what I liked about it and everything that is hard to put into words any other way.
"I'm absolutely loving the book (and Risher). I got halfway through the book last night before putting my iPad away to go to sleep. I didn't want to though, I wanted to continue reading and see more of Risher and Hollis...I kinda said to myself that I didn't want to put Risher away. He's such an awesome character! Another book boyfriend to add to my ever growing list!"
 "I have tears in my eyes! I love the ending! Well, not the part before the epilogue, but the epilogue was amazing."
I hope everyone reads this awesome book and sees what an awesome book this is!  

Parallel by Lauren Miller
Abby Barnes had a plan. The Plan. She'd go to Northwestern, major in journalism, and land a job at a national newspaper, all before she turned twenty-two. But one tiny choice—taking a drama class her senior year of high school—changed all that. Now, on the eve of her eighteenth birthday, Abby is stuck on a Hollywood movie set, miles from where she wants to be, wishing she could rewind her life. The next morning, she's in a dorm room at Yale, with no memory of how she got there. Overnight, it's as if her past has been rewritten.
With the help of Caitlin, her science-savvy BFF, Abby discovers that this new reality is the result of a cosmic collision of parallel universes that has Abby living an alternate version of her life. And not only that: Abby's life changes every time her parallel self makes a new choice. Meanwhile, her parallel is living out Abby's senior year of high school and falling for someone Abby's never even met.
As she struggles to navigate her ever-shifting existence, forced to live out the consequences of a path she didn't choose, Abby must let go of the Plan and learn to focus on the present, without losing sight of who she is, the boy who might just be her soul mate, and the destiny that's finally within reach.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
I got to meet Lauren Miller at UtopYA (see the picture to the right) and I don't believe that I had heard of Parallel until she did her keynote speech. Lauren Miller had a table at the Saturday signing and I had gone up to her table and told her how much her speech made me think, especially the quote that she said at the beginning. Lauren Miller gave me Parallel to read and review here on my blog, so here is the review that I promised back in June.
I finally read Parallel in July and August and just loved it. There were some parts that confused me, but I never gave up on it, even if it took me a while to read. The ending of Parallel was so amazing as Abby made the choice of which life she actually wanted, her real life or the parallel Abby's life. This is such a fantastic book about how things don't always go the way we imagine, that I think everyone should read. Parallel has made me think about how my life is the way it is because of the choices I have made in the past. Our choices are what make our future.

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