Review: Reckless by Skye Jordan

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Reckless by Skye Jordan 

This is a weird review. I felt kind of lukewarm for he first 30-40% of the book. The rest? Outstanding.  Not because it wasn’t good, I just had a bit of difficulty getting into the story. Very well written, but a lot of improbable situations and behavior. Examples? A hacking app that gives the phone numbers of those around you and lets you communicate anonymously. Sexting with someone you don’t know at an airport. Meeting said stranger for sex in his hotel room with the lights out because you don’t want him to recognize you. Yeah… huge WTF? factor here. Aside from that, all good 🙂

While the plot was well thought out and well written, at first I felt like I was barging in on the characters’ life. I was getting bits of information , but at the same time the reader gets a full view of what they are feeling and thinking so it kind of balances out. There’s a lot going on for both characters at the same time, and some things we only get a glimpse at. After the initial situations and meetings , the story gets organized and extremely fun to read. Jax and Lexi are hot, witty, playful and sweet. The aftermath of their in-the-dark anonymous meeting is very fun, super hot and developed brilliantly. There are unfortunate situations, but no serious drama or issues, making it a light read. Despite my observations for the beginning of the story, it is a very good, light-hearted and incredibly steamy read. Highly recommended. 

Review: Fear of Falling by S.L. Jennings

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Wow…. This book took me for an emotional rollercoaster from the first page and did not let go until the very last word. Amazing amazing amazing. It’s not sappy, it’s not sexy. It’s the kind of story that makes you wish that the situations presented never happened in real life for anyone. 

In Fear of Falling, we meet Kamilla, a domestic violence survivor who lived through the 7 circles of hell all her life at the hands of her father and found a semblance of a life with her two best friends, a lesbian rocker and a sweet man-whore, both with their own issues as well. We also meet Blaine, a tattooed, sexy guy with his own demons who ends up falling hard for Kamilla. Both of them struggle through paralyzing fears, and this leads to a story of redemption, lust, freedom, friendship, and emancipation from self-imposed limitations. Wonderfully written in simple yet touching words, weaved with a rockin’ playlist to follow, Fear of Falling is a 5 star read for me. 

 

Blurbs: 

“Unfortunately, …. We found out just how awful life could really be. We found out that monsters were ,indeed, real.  They walked among us. They looked just like you and me. They came in the form of the people that we loved and trusted the most.  The people whose only job was to love and protect us.”_ Kami

I also feel that I have to share the last part of the book, a note from from the author. 

“Dear reader, 

If you’re reading this, I want to say thank you. Creating Fear of Falling was an extremely emotinal journey and sharing it with the world has been just as nerve-wracking . But I did it.  And by choosing to purchase and read it, you have helped to expose something that occurs all too often. 

Though Fear of Falling is partly fictional, the issue of domestic violence is very real. There are far too many Kamis in the world , and most of them never meet their Blaine. And as the story reflects, it affects everyone. Friends, lovers, and especially, children. 

One out of four women experience some type of domestic violence in their lifetime. 50% of men who consistently abuse their wives also abuse their children. 

I urge you, please, if you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, get help. You don’t have to llive in fear. Ending the cycle of abuse is in your hands. 

~Excerpt from Fear of Falling by S.L. Jennings

Review: The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay

The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay

Wow. How can I even begin describing this book? I absolutely loved it. I was laughing so hard at times while I was biting my nails at the same time. It is a YA novel, yet for the most part I kind of forgot it was. The writing on this book is absolutely phenomenal, I can’t stress this enough. It is an extremely intense story, which the author gives us slowly, unfolding the past and present seamlessly until the reader puts the pieces together, until we get most of our questions answered towards the end. Of course, this just made it impossible to put down. It is never full of despair, as it might seem, just an undercurrent of life moving on and acceptance and constant evolving of characters and situations in an otherwise tragic tale. The characters are all very realistic and emotionally honest, and I liked that it was told from both main character’s POV. The bonus towards the end, with the shift in the names, very nice touch. The small details in this book are what took it above and beyond my expectations. After reading the synopsis, I was kind of expecting a Lovely Bones type of storyline.
Full of unmatched wit, brilliant sarcasm and dry humor, I found myself laughing a lot while reading. The catch? And this is actually why I think the writing was brilliant: this book is about a teenage girl, Nastya, who was brutally beaten, destroyed and was killed, then resuscitated by doctors. The whole story is about how she deals (or not) with the aftermath of this tragic event that interrupted her life while commiting to a vow of silence. She transforms herself into a whole new person, literally and not necessarily for the better, until she meets Josh, a guy who steals her attention and gets to her in ways no one else can. Their relationship is just as important and as a main theme in the book as is her issues and how Nastya chooses to deal with them.
I definitely recommend this book for anyone. 10 out of 10 stars!!
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Happy Banned Book Week !!!!

Banned Books week started in 1982 to promote freedom of ideas and literature by a group of authors, avid readers, publishers, editors and librarians. In 2012, the Office of Intellectual Freedom recorded 484 challenges, but the American Library Association says that less than 80% were actually reported.

For this year, these are the top 10 “banned “books being challenged:

 

“Captain Underpants” (series) by Dav Pilkey

Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group

 

“The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” by Sherman Alexie

Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

 

“Thirteen Reasons Why” by Jay Asher

Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group

 

“Fifty Shades of Grey” by E. L. James

Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit

 

“And Tango Makes Three” by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson

Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group

 

“The Kite Runner” by Khaled Hosseini

Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

 

“Looking for Alaska” by John Green

Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

 

“Scary Stories” (series) by Alvin Schwartz

Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence

 

“The Glass Castle” by Jeanette Walls

Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit

 

“Beloved” by Toni Morrison

Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence

 

I really think that no book should be banned. Ever. There is a reason why they are written and someone, someplace will make sense of them. We don’t have to agree with everything we read, but that doesn’t mean we have to try and shut down that which we don’t agree with or intimidates our upstanding beliefs and moral values. Personally, I have read a couple of the books on this list, and while they might deviate from what society considers “normal”, they do not offend anybody. I also had a bit of trouble believing there are still people that feel intimidated by new ideas that much that they would feel the need to try to ban these books. I mean , this isn’t the Middle Ages. So, as a personal goal, I’ll try to add these books to my to-read list and hopefully finish before the end of the year. 

For more information, visit www.bannedbooksweek.org

As always, thanks for reading!! 

Review: Cage by Harper Sloan

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I have to say, Harper Sloan is one of my favorites in romance novels. Cage is the second book in the Corps Security Series and as the book before it , Axel, is another stunner. Sexy, intense, full of action scenes and other exciting and emotional twists, Cage sets the bar even higher for the rest of the series. Cage is an ex-Marine who will give everything for those near and dear to him, especially his adoptive sister Izzy, Axel’s wife.
Haunted by his past, the loss of his twin sister by a domestic violence situation, he finds himself meeting Michelle, a nurse with her own sister who passed at the hands of her ex-husband. An intense chemistry and explosive relationship begins for these two, and they begin to settle into a comfortable routine. But Greg Cage has a secret. Their lives and past and intertwined. What happens when and if Michelle discovers the truth?
Harper Sloan manages to write a thriller, action,erotic romance and a bit of psychology into each character and event and it ends up being a masterpiece on its own. Super steamy and emotionally raw at the same time.
This book was brilliant, poignant and captures the reality of abuse victim’s families as they are left behind.
Will they overcome the tragedy that lays behind them? Or is it really behind them at all?

Podcast Review: History in 5 minutes

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For all you history fanatics, this podcast is awesome and super fun. I know, podcasts aren’t that hip right now, but I’m pretty sure there are a lot of us who still subscribe to a few :). This podcast is run by Michael Rank , and is offbeat, fun to listen to and true to its title, only five minutes.
He focuses on talking mostly unknown or little known facts and alternative views on history giants such as Genghis Khan, Vlad Dracul, Joan of Arc and Alexander the Great. He also talks about specific eras or periods in history. These are five minutes well-worth taking to listen to this little gem.

Review: Nine Hills to Nambonkaha by Sarah Erdman

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Nine Hills to Bambonkaha is a brilliant, picturesque memoir of Peace Corps member Sarah Erdman as she lives a full year in a little African village where she struggles to learn their ways, adapt and try to teach them to avoid the ever growing HIV virus.

I have read various memoirs, yet this one I keep coming back to for some years now. The story telling from Sarah Erdman is phenomenal, she is never condescending or demeaning, never has a break down from the lack of modernity. She observes and is fully willing to participate in the hopes of getting across her mission of preventing HIV and keeping a record of babies’ health and development. She paints a very clear picture of life in a village , and includes objective snapshots of everything from customs, traditions, politics, religion and life in general. The only thing that betrays her objectivity? Her love and passion for the people in the village, especially the children. Her descriptions and observations are golden and I genuinely hope that when these children grow up, they have the opportunity to read the words that were written about them and maybe that will give them a push to fully realizing their worth and potential in a system where a full education and successful career may not be possible. The political observations and the way she involves herself in local politics are quite astounding, as she weaves her way eloquently, full of wit and determination.
An incredible book for everyone, no matter what genre you’re used to.

Synopsis:
The village of Nambonkaha in the Ivory Coast is a place where electricity hasn’t yet arrived, where sorcerers still conjure magic, where the tok-tok sound of women pounding corn fills the morning air like a drumbeat. As Sarah Erdman enters the social fold of the village as a Peace Corps volunteer, she finds that Nambonkaha is also a place where AIDS threatens and poverty is constant, where women suffer the indignities of patriarchal customs, and where children work like adults while still managing to dream. Lyrical and topical, Erdman’s beautiful debut captures the astonishing spirit of an unforgettable community.

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