Book Review

ARC Book Review: Never Saw You Coming by Erin Hahn

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: YA Contemporary Romance
Length: 320 pages
Author: Erin Hahn
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: September 7th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Raised by conservative parents, 18-year-old Meg Hennessey just found out her entire childhood was a lie. Instead of taking a gap year before college to find herself, she ends up traveling north to meet what’s left of the family she never knew existed.

While there, she meets Micah Allen, a former pastor’s kid whose dad ended up in prison, leaving Micah with his own complicated relationship about the church. The clock is ticking on Pastor Allen’s probation hearing and Micah, now 19, feels the pressure to forgive – even when he can’t possibly forget.

As Meg and Micah grow closer, they are confronted with the heavy flutterings of first love and all the complications it brings. Together, they must navigate the sometimes-painful process of cutting ties with childhood beliefs as they build toward something truer and straight from the heart.

In Erin Hahn’s Never Saw You Coming, sometimes it takes a leap of faith to find yourself.

Thank you to Wednesday Books and Netgalley for an eARC.

I LOVED THIS.

Hahn’s books are only getting better and better. Oh wow did I love this. My favorite of her books so far.

I am a religious person so I wasn’t sure how I would feel reading this. But the way that many important topics were discussed and approached made me tear up and want to hug this book. It hit home in many ways and honestly strengthened how I feel in my spirituality. It’s okay to question. It’s okay to love. It’s okay to find what works best for YOU. I may not 100% agree with every little thing in this book, but faith is handled differently by each of us and no two experience life the same way.

The absolutely precious first love romance between Micah and Meg had me grinning from ear to ear. IT WAS SO CUTE. I loved it. They truly hit it off and I couldn’t get enough of their open conversations and meaningful dialogue about their struggles and triumphs. Even better, there wasn’t some wildly dramatic conflict between them. The conflict lied elsewhere and I could shout for joy about how that was handled.

NSYC had me hooked from the first chapter. I read it in a day because I needed more more more. The characters were flawed and beautiful. I ended up loving the themes of faith and the essence of human nature versus God himself. It wasn’t a book of belittling, it was a book of hope and growing up. Being resilient in the torrent of trials and leaning on what matters to you most.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Contemporary Romance
  • Language: some strong
  • Romance: kisses to heated make-outs; some implied closed door scenes
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: brief mentions of suicide and self harm, an incarcerated father, loss of a parent by drunk driving

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: Down Comes the Night by Allison Saft

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Young adult fantasy romance
Length: 400 pages
Author: Allison Saft
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: March 2nd, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

A gorgeously gothic, deeply romantic YA debut fantasy about two enemies trapped inside a crumbling mansion, with no escape from the monsters within.

Honor your oath, destroy your country.

Wren Southerland is the most talented healer in the Queen’s Guard, but her reckless actions have repeatedly put her on thin ice with her superiors. So when a letter arrives from a reclusive lord, asking Wren to come to his estate to cure his servant from a mysterious disease, she seizes the chance to prove herself.

When she arrives at Colwick Hall, Wren realizes that nothing is what it seems. Particularly when she discovers her patient is actually Hal Cavendish, the sworn enemy of her kingdom.

As the snowy mountains make it impossible to leave the estate, Wren and Hal grow closer as they uncover a sinister plot that could destroy everything they hold dear. But choosing love could doom both their kingdoms.

Allison Saft’s Down Comes the Night is a snow-drenched, gothic, romantic fantasy that keeps you racing through the pages long into the night.

Thank you to Wednesday Books and Netgalley for the eARC. All opinions are my own!

GREAT ATMOSPHERE.

I’m grateful I got an ARC for this one, because reading it in September with all of the fall, spooky, and Gothic vibes was the perfect combination. The atmosphere of Down Comes the Night was written beautifully.

I loved Wren as a main character. She was emotional, brave, intelligent, and devoted. I really loved her compassion for others and the fact she was emotional. It’s okay to feel things and to show those feelings and I loved knowing and seeing that in a character.

Her relationship with both Una and Hal worked amazingly in this standalone. It was somehow a love triangle, but not. Just a movement and progression of Wren’s relationships as the story grew. I thought the way it worked out with Una fit well, and appreciated that it wasn’t some blown out of proportion break-up, but an acknowledgement of where they both were in their lives. And moving with Hal felt right for the now, and he was just SO PRECIOUS. I love a brooding guy with a soft heart.

There’s a LOT of medical terminology used. More so than I’ve seen in any book I’ve read in a good long while. I do have a background in this kind of medical jargon so I didn’t mind it and kind of enjoyed this different addition to a young adult fantasy book. Wren works as a healer and whenever she explains something she’s trying to do, it’s in a more medical based format.

Our villain is a little roll your eyes worthy, but they have a flair all their own that was very creepy and fit into this entire setting well. I wish the story wasn’t confined to essentially one location, but there was enough overall to influence the narrative. Adored the ending and there’s plenty of highlight worthy quotes in here about choosing peace. Definitely a must read!

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy + romance
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses / make-outs; a very little detailed fade to black scene
  • Violence: bloody/gory; murder, physical altercations, poisonings, magic attacks

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: You Have a Match by Emma Lord

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Young adult contemporary
Length: 320 pages
Author: Emma Lord
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: January 5th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

From the beloved author of Tweet Cute comes Emma Lord’s You Have a Match, a YA novel of family, friendship, romance and sisterhood…

When Abby signs up for a DNA service, it’s mainly to give her friend and secret love interest, Leo, a nudge. After all, she knows who she is already: Avid photographer. Injury-prone tree climber. Best friend to Leo and Connie…although ever since the B.E.I. (Big Embarrassing Incident) with Leo, things have been awkward on that front.

But she didn’t know she’s a younger sister.

When the DNA service reveals Abby has a secret sister, shimmery-haired Instagram star Savannah Tully, it’s hard to believe they’re from the same planet, never mind the same parents—especially considering Savannah, queen of green smoothies, is only a year and a half older than Abby herself.

The logical course of action? Meet up at summer camp (obviously) and figure out why Abby’s parents gave Savvy up for adoption. But there are complications: Savvy is a rigid rule-follower and total narc. Leo is the camp’s co-chef, putting Abby’s growing feelings for him on blast. And her parents have a secret that threatens to unravel everything.

But part of life is showing up, leaning in, and learning to fit all your awkward pieces together. Because sometimes, the hardest things can also be the best ones.

Thank you to Wednesday Books and Netgalley for the eARC. All opinions are my own!

ADORED THIS.

You Have a Match is the parent trap, found family, summer camp mash-up I didn’t know I needed. I loved this so much. Emma Lord is cementing herself as an auto-buy author for me. After loving Tweet Cute, I’m so happy I got a chance to read her next book!

I absolutely loved all of these characters. There were weaknesses and strengths. So much growth, and seizing opportunities and finding your future path. It was such a perfect young adult book. Watching Abby cope with learning about her new sister felt raw and real. Abby and Savannah conquered a lot because they realized they truly wanted to be in each other’s lives. Trapping their parents together was such a gem and seeing how the adults worked out their prior conflicts enhanced everything. I honestly couldn’t peg down the full story until it was revealed and I love that it remained a well-timed mystery.

The side story romance between Leo and Abby was PRECIOUS. Such a sweet friends to lovers that definitely had me shipping them from the beginning. I love where it fit in because it never over shadowed the main plot. It clearly was meant to be on the side and it appropriately remained there.

There was just so many little things that added together to make this story what it was. I felt like I learned more about myself just from reading it. Wanting a place to belong, understanding that our parents aren’t perfect, finding that sister you didn’t know you had, and falling in love. Incredibly heart-warming and intensely charming, You Had a Match needs to be on your TBR ASAP.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult contemporary
  • Language: some strong
  • Romance: kisses / make-outs

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: Fable (Fable #1) by Adrienne Young

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: YA Fantasy
Length: 368 pages
Author: Adrienne Young
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: September 1st, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

As the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home seventeen-year-old Fable has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her. The only thing that keeps her going is the goal of getting off the island, finding her father and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew. To do so Fable enlists the help of a young trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father.

But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him and Fable soon finds that West isn’t who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they’re going to stay alive.

Welcome to a world made dangerous by the sea and by those who wish to profit from it. Where a young girl must find her place and her family while trying to survive in a world built for men.

Thank you to Wednesday Books and Netgalley for the eARC. All opinions are my own!

YES.

That’s how I feel about reading Adrienne Young’s newest book. Just, YES.

Lets start off talking about the setting, ships, islands, deep-sea diving, pirates, OH MY. I loved it. I’m a huge fan of all things water related and getting another book with that setting made me beyond excited. The way the land was separated, how the dynamics of the world worked, character interactions, all of it.

Fable is a fav. Loved her as our heroine. Her resiliency and ability to adapt to whatever situation was in front of her was bar none. Because wow, she was thrown into a rough situation that I’m still trying to grasp the point of (who abandons their child on an island?). She’s a bit rough around the edges from not having any positive interactions with those around her. But, Fable persists, and finding her family was one of the best parts of this book. I love the crew she ends up with and am so excited this book has a sequel.

The only small issue I struggled with (and why I gave it four stars) is that I had a hard time finding the full plot. Things were happening and the story was moving, and yet I didn’t see where it was all going. I guess that’s kind of how it still went about by the end, but the ending was filled with so much I overlooked a lot of it. The amount of action turned out in Fable keeps you on your toes.

I loooove the dash of romance here. It reminds me of how she wrote it in The Sky in the Deep (another fav). It doesn’t take up a lot of pages and it isn’t in your face. The subtle interactions and looks across the way totally add to the vibe between Fable and West. I adored the way it worked out and like how it only enhanced the story. Fable and her quest for her own place to be remained at the forefront.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses, one closed door scene
  • Violence: guns, physical, fires, murder, drowning, storms
  • Trigger warnings: child abandonment, loss of a loved one

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