Review/ The Summer of Us by Cecilia Vinesse

Review/ The Summer of Us by Cecilia VinesseThe Summer of Us by Cecilia Vinesse
Published by Poppy on June 5, 2018
Pages: 320
Goodreads

A swoon-worthy story about five best friends on a whirlwind trip through Europe, perfect for fans of Jenny Han, Stephanie Perkins, and Jennifer E. Smith.
American expat Aubrey has only two weeks left in Europe before she leaves for college, and she's nowhere near ready. Good thing she and her best friend, Rae, have planned one last group trip across the continent. From Paris to Prague, they're going to explore famous museums, sip champagne in fancy restaurants, and eat as many croissants as possible with their friends Clara, Jonah, and Gabe.
But when old secrets come to light, Aubrey and Rae's trip goes from a carefree adventure to a complete disaster. For starters, there's Aubrey and Gabe's unresolved history, complicated by the fact that Aubrey is dating Jonah, Gabe's best friend. And then there's Rae's hopeless crush on the effortlessly cool Clara. How is Rae supposed to admit her feelings to someone so perfect when they're moving to different sides of the world in just a few weeks?
Author Cecilia Vinesse delivers a romantic European adventure that embraces the magic of warm summer nights, the thrill of first kisses, and the bittersweet ache of learning to say goodbye to the past while embracing the future.

As I am just about to sit and do my review for The Summer of Us, I realized that it was roughly this time last year that I read Cecilia Vinesse’s debut novel, Seven Days of You. Both of Cecilia’s books are stand alone’s and are the perfect summer road trip books in my opinion.

The Summer of Us is told in two points of view, that of Aubrey and her friend Rae. Aubrey, Rae and three of their friends, Claire (Rae’s crush), Gage (Jonah’s best friend and he has a crush on Aubrey) and Jonah (Aubrey’s boyfriend) have all decided that before they all go their separate ways for college/university that they will travel across Europe for the summer for one last hooray and if you have ever traveled with a close group of friends you know that it will not all be hunky dory and that drama will ensue and that is exactly what happens on this trip.

The dream trip that everyone thought would happen doesn’t go off as planned although at first it seems like Aubrey is in control and has her own agenda of things she wants to see and do and the group is basically following her lead. Aubrey has always had a plan (going to NYC to study with her boyfriend and to live happily ever after) and nothing will change that until her own jealousy and paranoia sets in that risks it all.

Rae on the other hand comes off as the type of girl who goes with the flow and what happens happens. She doesn’t really have plans and is rather last minute in her planning. Rae realizes that her crush on Claire (who everyone thinks is straight and it leaves you wondering if she is or isn’t) will never materialize and realizes that being a friend is getting hard decides that she will move to Australia to go to school. Out of sight, out of mind kind of thing.

I want to tell you so much more about this book but I don’t want to give to much away. You really should pick it up and read it. I don’t think you will be disappointed. There is so much twist and turns throughout the book that will leave you wondering if this trip will change the lives of 5 people for good or bad or will it strengthen  their friendship as they all go their separate ways.

I really enjoyed reading The Summer of Us. It was a light, fun and quick read. If your looking for a quick fun summer read I highly recommend this.

I look forward to reading more of Cecilia’s upcoming books.

Review/ Not For You

Title: NOT FOR ME (The Windy City Chronicles Book 1)
Author: Kat de Falla
Pub. Date: May 24, 2018
Publisher: Kat de Falla
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 40

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooksKobo

Manda Wolfgram is a struggling literary agent who is looking for the perfect manuscript to land in her lap and the perfect man to land in her bed. When the sixth-floor hottie finally asks her out, she gets more than she bargained for. How can a girl wrap her brain around a Shakespearean actor who writes erotica?

Harry Sackes leads a double life: making a career as an author by day and dipping into the dark underworld of criminals at night. The moment he sees Manda in his twin brother’s arms, his whole life becomes his personal Shakespearean trag-comedy of mistaken identity and unrequited love in this fast-paced chick lit romance.

Before I get into my review for Not For Me by Kat de Falla I quickly have to thank Rockstar Booktour for allowing me to be a part of the book tour for this. I was graciously provided with an eArc of the book for my participation in the blog tour.

This is the first book in a brand new series and one that I am excited to continue plus this is the first time I am reading Kat’s books. I am curious about her other books now.

This was a super quick addictive read. I literally read this in one sitting. This was a super quick read that sucked you in right away and held your attention right until the end and left you wanting more.  The pace was perfect and not once did I ever think there was to much of this and that. This had just the right amount of everything that left you wanting more. The action starts right from the get go and holds you until the very end. You had no idea what was going to happen and even when I finished I was like what the heck just happened and had to go back and reread it because I didn’t see it coming.

Manda is our main character. She is an up and coming literary agent with a publishing company. She is beyond thrilled because her favorite author/client just made the New York best sellers list and she is frantically trying to get a hold of her but to no avail only to later to find out some bad news.

Being pressured by her boss to continue what the author started out and her family she needs to come up with a plan asap. Will she be able to pull it off or will it blow up in her face?

Our other man character is Harry. A guy who lives in the same building as Manda and she just happens to have a crush on him but little does Manda know there is more to the him then meets the eye. Harry has a few of his own secrets that no one knows about.

At first Manda is not sure what to make of him and has no clue that there is two of him because he has a twin bother Dane. I have to admit at first I really liked Harry but then he came off as weird and when he was with her he was one way and then when he wasn’t it was a different way. Picture a sweet guy and then picture the bad boy kind of guy. I wasn’t quite sure what he was up to but as the story was coming to an end it was all revealed and I was left shaking my head because I did not see that coming.

After reading this I am curious to see where this will go. I can’t wait to dig into this serious. Hopefully it won’t be long before more books come out.

Blog Tour/ Not For Me

Title: NOT FOR ME (The Windy City Chronicles Book 1)
Author: Kat de Falla
Pub. Date: May 24, 2018
Publisher: Kat de Falla
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 40

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooksKobo

Manda Wolfgram is a struggling literary agent who is looking for the perfect manuscript to land in her lap and the perfect man to land in her bed. When the sixth-floor hottie finally asks her out, she gets more than she bargained for. How can a girl wrap her brain around a Shakespearean actor who writes erotica?

Harry Sackes leads a double life: making a career as an author by day and dipping into the dark underworld of criminals at night. The moment he sees Manda in his twin brother’s arms, his whole life becomes his personal Shakespearean trag-comedy of mistaken identity and unrequited love in this fast-paced chick lit romance.

About Kat:
Kat was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she learned to roller skate, ride a banana seat bike, and love Shakespeare. She holds a Doctor of Pharmacy degree and is happily employed as a retail pharmacist. She is married to her soul mate, composer Lee de Falla and raising four kids together ala the Brady Bunch. The Seer’s Lover was Kat’s first book and she is working feverishly on four different series at the moment!

Register for her newsletter to learn about her upcoming projects and find out about deals and giveaways at http://eepurl.com/MFZ55

Kat is so much an extravert that she has come full circle and enjoys her alone time as much as her social adventures. Connect with Kat (who does indeed love cats!)

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Giveaway Details:
One lucky winner will receive a $25Amazon gift card, International.

Giveaway Embed Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

6/11/2018- Cindy’s Love of Books– Review
6/11/2018- To Be Read– Review
6/12/2018- Don’t Judge, Read– Review
6/12/2018- Eating Between the Lines Inc– Review
6/13/2018- The BookWorm Drinketh– Review
6/13/2018- Mythical Books– Guest Post
6/14/2018- The Layaway Dragon– Spotlight
6/14/2018- FUONLYKNEW– Spotlight
6/15/2018- The Book Girl– Review
6/15/2018- Lisa Loves Literature– Interview

Week Two:

6/18/2018- TheHufflepuffNerdette– Review
6/18/2018- Love in a time of Feminism– Excerpt
6/19/2018- BookHounds YA– Review
6/19/2018- Confessions of a YA Reader– Excerpt
6/20/2018- Wonder Struck Spotlight
6/20/2018- A Gingerly Review– Excerpt
6/21/2018- Sweet Southern Home– Excerpt
6/21/2018- Two Chicks on Books– Interview
6/22/2018- Books a Plenty Book Reviews– Spotlight
6/22/2018- Parajunkee– Excerpt

Sundays In Bed With…..

Welcome to our Sundays In Bed With… Meme! The meme that dares to ask what book has been in your bed this morning? Come share what book you’ve spent time curled up reading in bed, or which book you wish you had time to read today!

This is being hosted by two of the sweetest people I have the privilege of knowing in real life, Kate and Kim. Sadly we don’t talk like we use to because you know real life happens but there is not a day that goes by that I don’t think of them both. If you click on the banner it will take you right to the Midnight Book Girl blog.

One would hope that on a beautiful sunny Sunday morning that one would be able to stay in bed to read for a little while and take advantage of not having to be anywhere or do anything so early right? Well that was not the case this morning. I was up half the night tossing and turning because my knee and ankle were achy, then when I did manage to get some sleep I would have weird dreams that made no sense. So needless to say I ended up getting up way to early this morning. I did make some tea and curl up on the couch.

I finished this up:

The Summer Of Us

Then started this:

Not for Me (The Windy City Chronicles Book 1) by [de Falla, Kat]

Manda Wolfgram is a struggling literary agent who is looking for the perfect manuscript to land in her lap
and the perfect man to land in her bed. When the sixth-floor hottie finally asks her out, she gets more than she bargained for. How can a girl wrap her brain around a Shakespearean actor who writes erotica?

Harry Sackes leads a double life: making a career as an author by day and dipping into the dark
underworld of criminals at night. The moment he sees Manda in his twin brother’s arms, his whole life
becomes his personal Shakespearean trag-comedy of mistaken identity and unrequited love in this fast-
paced chick lit romance.

Up next will be:

Tell Me No Lies

Can the course of friendship or love ever run true when everyone has something to hide?

Lizzy Swift is a senior in high school, emerging from her nerd chrysalis to become a social butterfly. She’s dating Matt Ashley, the boy who’s been out of her reach since freshman year. Her bold, reckless new friend Claire Reynolds introduces her to Center City Philadelphia—clubs, street life, and the eye-opening art scene. And her Ivy League ambitions take a backseat to nights of partying, dancing, and dating.

But almost as quickly, the heady delight of Lizzy’s new life is clouded by doubts and deceptions.  While she has a special connection with Matt, it’s not the perfect romance she dreamed of. Claire carries around a mysterious sadness and talks about a breakup so bad she changed schools—but she won’t tell Lizzy the whole story. Lizzy wants Claire to confide in her, even as she keeps her own embarrassing secrets from her new best friend.

Will the truth come to light before it’s too late for Lizzy, Claire, and Matt to save their love and friendships?

[This comes out on June 12th, 2018]

What are you reading this week?

 

Book Spotlight/ All The Little Lights

About The Book
 
Title: All The Little Lights
Author: Jamie McGuire
Release Date: May 29, 2018
 
Summary

The first time Elliott Youngblood spots Catherine Calhoun, he’s just a boy with a camera, and he’s never seen a sadder and more beautiful sight. Both Elliott and Catherine feel like outcasts, yet they find an easy friendship with each other. But when Catherine needs him most, Elliott is forced to leave town.

Elliott finally returns, but he and Catherine are now different people. He’s a star high school athlete, and she spends all her free time working at her mother’s mysterious bed-and-breakfast. Catherine hasn’t forgiven Elliott for abandoning her, but he’s determined to win back her friendship…and her heart.

Just when Catherine is ready to fully trust Elliott, he becomes the prime suspect in a local tragedy. Despite the town’s growing suspicions, Catherine clings to her love for Elliott. But a devastating secret that Catherine has buried could destroy whatever chance of happiness they have left.

About the Author
 
Jamie McGuire is the #1 New York TimesUSA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Walking Disaster, the Maddox Brothers series, the Providence trilogy, and the international bestseller Beautiful Disaster, which paved the way for the new-adult genre. She was the first independent author in history to strike a print deal with retail giant Walmart, and her work has been translated into fifty languages. She lives in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, with her husband, Jeff, and their three children. To learn more about Jamie, visit www.jamiemcguire.com, or follow her on Twitter @JamieMcGuire.
Rafflecopter Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Message from Elliott 
 
My name is Elliott. You don’t know my story yet, but you will. I spent my summers with my aunt and uncle just down the street from Catherine. She lives in a looming, rickety bed and breakfast called the Juniper, and spends most of her time outside, away from the memories that live between the Juniper’s walls amidst more tangible dangers that I never knew existed until now.
 
It’s not so much that I fell in love or even that I fought for it, but that a war is waging inside Catherine’s home—one I can’t fight for her. It doesn’t matter how strong I am, or how determined I am to stay. I can only get close enough to observe her pain in detail. And, so I stay, and wait, and help her the only way I know how; to do what I couldn’t for her before.
 
I hope you’ll understand.

 

Elliott began to speak, but a small group of girls approached our table. 
 
“Aw,” Presley said, dramatically touching her chest. “Catherine got herself a boyfriend. I feel so bad that all this time we thought you were lying about him being from out of town.” 
 
Three carbon copies of Presley—Tara and Tatum Martin and Brie Burns—all giggled and tossed their bleached-blonde tresses. Tara and Tatum were identical twins, but they all strived to look like Presley. 
 
“Maybe just outside of town,” Brie said. “Like a reservation, maybe?” 
 
“Oklahoma doesn’t have reservations,” I said, appalled by her stupidity. 
 
“Yeah, they do,” Brie argued. 
 
“You’re thinking of tribal land,” Elliott said, unfazed.
 
“I’m Presley,” she said to Elliott, smug. 
 
I looked away, not wanting to witness their introduction, but Elliott didn’t move or speak, so I turned to see what was holding up their exchange. Elliott offered me a small grin, ignoring Presley’s outstretched hand. 
 
She made a face and crossed her arms. “Is Brie right? Do you live in White Eagle?” 
 
Elliott raised an eyebrow. “That’s the headquarters for the Ponca tribe.” 
 
“And?” Presley sniped. 
 
Elliott sighed, seeming bored. “I’m Cherokee.” 
 
“So that’s an Indian, right? Isn’t White Eagle for Indians?” she asked. 
 
“Just go away, Presley,” I pleaded, worried she would say something even more offensive. 
 
Excitement sparked in Presley’s eyes. “Wow, Kit-Cat. Are we getting a little big for our britches?” 
 
I looked up at her, anger blazing in my eyes. “It’s Catherine.” 
 
Presley led them to a booth across the room, continuing to tease Elliott and me from afar. 
 
“I’m so sorry,” I whispered. “They’re just doing it because you’re with me.” 
 
“Because I’m with you?” 
 
“They hate me,” I grumbled. 
 
He turned his spoon upside down and stuck it in his mouth, seeming unaffected. “It’s not hard to see why.” 
 
I wondered what about my outward appearance made it so obvious. Maybe that’s why the town hadn’t stopped blaming Mama and me for my grandparents’ mistakes. Maybe I looked like someone they should hate. 
 
“Why do you look embarrassed?” he asked. 
 
“I guess I was hoping you didn’t know about my family and the smelter.” 
 
“Oh. That. My aunt told me years ago. Is that what you think? That they’re mean to you because of your family history with the town?” 
 
“Why else?” 
 
“Catherine.” My name sounded like a soft laugh tumbling from his mouth. “They’re jealous of you.” 
 
I frowned and shook my head. “What could they possibly be jealous of me for? We barely have two pennies to rub together.” 
 
“Have you seen yourself?” he asked. 
 
I blushed and looked down. Only Dad had ever complimented my looks. 
 
“You’re all the things they’re not.” 
 
I crossed my arms on the table and watched the warm hue of the corner streetlight blink between the branches of a tree. It was a strange feeling, wanting to hear more and hoping he’d talk about anything else. “What they said doesn’t bother you?” I asked, surprised. 
 
“It use to.” 
 
“Now it doesn’t?” 
 
“My uncle John says people can only make us angry if we let them, and if we let them, we give them power.” 
 
“That’s pretty profound.” 
 
“I listen to him sometimes, even though he thinks I don’t.”
 
“What else does he say?” He didn’t hesitate. “That you either get good at rising above and meeting ignorance with education, or you get really good at being bitter.” 
 
I smiled. Elliott spoke his uncle’s words with respect. 
 
“So you just choose not to let what people say get to you?” 
 
“Pretty much.” 
 
How?” I said, leaning in. I was genuinely curious, hoping he would unveil some magical secret that would end the misery Presley and her friends loved invoking in me. 
 
“Oh, I get angry. It gets old when people feel the need to tell me their great-grandmother was a Cherokee princess, or that stupid joke about if I got my name from the first thing my parents saw after they walked out of a teepee. I can get heated when someone calls me chief, when I see people in headdresses outside of our ceremonies. But my uncle says we should either be compassionate and educate or leave them alone in their ignorance. Besides, there’s too much ignorance in the world to let it all get to me. If I did, all I’d ever feel is anger, and I don’t want to be like my mom.” 
 
“Is that why you were punching our tree?” 
 
He looked down, either unwilling or unable to answer the question. 
 
“A lot bothers me,” I grumbled, sitting back. I glanced at the clones, dressed in cutoff denim shorts and floral blouses, just variations of the same shirt from the same store. 
 
Dad tried to make sure I had the right clothes and the right backpack, but year after year Mama watched as more of my childhood friends faded away. She began to wonder what we’d done wrong, and then I began to wonder, too. 
 
The truth was, I hated Presley for hating me. I didn’t have the heart to tell Mama that I would never fit in. I wasn’t vile enough for those small-town, small-minded girls. It took me a long time to figure out that I didn’t really want to, but at fifteen, I sometimes wondered if it was better than being alone. Dad couldn’t be my best friend forever. I took a bite of my sherbet. 
 
“Stop,” Elliott said. 
 
“Stop what?” I asked, the cool orangey-goodness melting on my tongue. 
 
“Looking at them like you wish you were sitting over there. You’re better than that.” 
 
“We should probably, um . . . we should go.” 
 
Elliott stood, waiting for me to slide out of the booth. He followed me out, so I wasn’t sure if he noticed Presley and the clones covering their insults and giggles with their hands. 
 
When he stopped next to the trash can behind their booth, I knew he had. “What are you laughing at?” he asked. 
 
I tugged on his T-shirt, begging him with my eyes to keep walking. 
 
Presley rolled her shoulders and lifted her chin, thrilled to be acknowledged. “Just how cute is Kit-Cat with her new boyfriend? It’s precious how you don’t want to hurt her feelings. I mean . . . I have to assume that’s what”—she gestured to us—“this is.” 
 
Elliott walked over to their table, and the girls’ giggles quieted. He knocked on the wood and sighed. “You know why you’ll never outgrow the need to make others feel like shit so you can feel better, Presley?” 
 
She narrowed her eyes at him, watching him like a snake ready to strike. 
 
Elliott continued, “Because it’s a temporary high. It never lasts, and you’ll never stop because it’s the only happiness you’ll ever have in your sad, pathetic life that revolves around manicures and highlighting your hair. Your friends? They don’t like you. No one ever will because you don’t like yourself. So every time you give Catherine a hard time, she’ll know. She’ll know why you’re doing it, just like your friends will know. Just like you’ll know that you’re overcompensating. Every time you throw insults Catherine’s way, it’s that much less of a secret.” He made eye contact with each clone and then Presley. “Have the day you deserve.” 
 
He returned to the door and held it open, gesturing for me to walk through. We navigated the parked cars until we were on the other side of the lot, and headed back toward our neighborhood. The streetlamps were on, the gnats and mosquitoes buzzing beneath the bright bulbs. The quiet made the sounds of our shoes against the pavement more prominent. 
 
“That was,” I began, searching for the right word, “legendary. I could never tell someone off like that.” 
 
“Well, I don’t live here, so that makes it easier. And that wasn’t entirely mine.” 
 
“What do you mean?” “It’s from a scene in Detention Club Musical. Don’t tell me you didn’t watch it when you were little.” 
 
I stared at him in disbelief, and then laughter erupted from my throat. “The movie that came out when we were eight?” 
 
“I watched it every day for like a year and a half.” 
 
I giggled. “Wow. I can’t believe I didn’t catch it.” 
 
“I’m just glad Presley didn’t. That would have made my monologue much less intimidating.”

SYNC Summer Audiobook 2018 week 7

I just wanted to take a quick moment to remind you about SYNC is a free summer audiobook program for young adults but you can do this to.  From April 26th to July 25th, SYNC gives away two complete audiobook downloads a week –pairs of high interest titles, based on weekly themes. Sign up for email or text alerts and be first to know when new titles are available to download at www.audiobooksync.com.

I have always wanted to give audio books another chance and what better way then through SYNC Audio Books. These are actually both books I have never read so I am excited to give them a try.

The audiobooks this week are:

by Wendy Spinale | Read by Fiona Hardingham, Steve West

Published by Scholastic Audio

Forget the story of Peter Pan you know. Because in Everland, the only way to grow up is to survive. London has been destroyed in a blitz of bombs and disease. The only ones who have survived are children, among them Gwen Darling and her siblings, Joanna and Mikey. They spend their nights scavenging and their days avoiding the ruthless Marauders — the German Army led by Captain Hanz Otto Oswald Kretschmer. Unsure if the virus has spread past England’s borders but desperate to leave, Captain Hook hunts for a cure, which he thinks can be found in one of the survivors. He and his Marauders stalk the streets snatching children for experimentation. None ever return. Until the day they grab Joanna. As Gwen sets out to save her, she meets a mysterious boy named Pete. Pete offers the assistance of his gang of Lost Boys and the fierce sharpshooter Bella, who have all been living in a city hidden underground. But in a place where help has a steep price and every promise is bound by blood, it will cost Gwen. And are she, Pete, the Lost Boys, and Bella enough to outsmart Captain Hook?

by Edgar Wallace | Read by Bill Homewood

Published by Naxos AudioBooks

The Four Just Men, dedicated to ridding the world of unpunished criminals and profiteers, take their campaign into the treacherous, aristocratic world of gambling, horse-racing and high finance, where blackmail, poison and murder are commonplace. Working outside the law, the Four take it upon themselves to clean things up in their own way.

 

Can’t Wait Wednesday June 6th

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted here, at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they’re books that have yet to be released. It’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.
If you’d like to join in, you can use the image above, the one below, or make your own. Please link back to Wishful Endings in your post and also add it to the linky widget posted each week so we all can come see what you’re excited about. If you’re continuing with the Waiting on Wednesday feature, feel free to link those up as well!
One of the books I am most excited to come out is:
Save the Date: Standard Edition

Father of the Bride meets Sixteen Candles in the latest novel from New York Times bestselling author Morgan Matson.

Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married this weekend at their family home, and Charlie can’t wait—for the first time in years, all four of her older siblings will be under one roof. Charlie is desperate for one last perfect weekend, before the house is sold and everything changes. The house will be filled with jokes and games and laughs again. Making decisions about things like what college to attend and reuniting with longstanding crush Jesse Foster—all that can wait. She wants to focus on making the weekend perfect.

The only problem? The weekend is shaping up to be an absolute disaster.

There’s the unexpected dog with a penchant for howling, house alarm that won’t stop going off, and a papergirl with a grudge.

There are the relatives who aren’t speaking, the (awful) girl her favorite brother brought home unannounced, and a missing tuxedo.

Not to mention the neighbor who seems to be bent on sabotage and a storm that is bent on drenching everything. The justice of the peace is missing. The band will only play covers. The guests are all crazy. And the wedding planner’s nephew is unexpectedly, distractingly…cute.

Over the course of three ridiculously chaotic days, Charlie will learn more than she ever expected about the family she thought she knew by heart. And she’ll realize that sometimes, trying to keep everything like it was in the past means missing out on the future.

[This is coming out on June 5th and I am planning on running to Chapters that night to pick it up.]
What are you excited for this week?