Sunday, October 7, 2018

Blog Tour: The Geography of Lost Things

Hosted by the FFBC

The Geography of Lost Things by Jessica Brody 
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: October 2nd, 2018
Young Adult Contemporary

In this romantic road trip story perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Morgan Matson, a teen girl discovers the value of ordinary objects while learning to forgive her absent father.

After Ali’s father passes away, he leaves his one and only prized possession—a 1968 Firebird convertible—to his daughter. But Ali doesn’t plan on keeping it. Not when it reminds her too much of all her father’s unfulfilled promises. So when she finds a buyer three hundred miles up the Pacific coast willing to pay enough money for the car to save her childhood home, Ali can’t wait to get going. Except Ali has no idea how to drive a stick shift. But guess who does?

Ali’s ex-boyfriend, Nico. And Nico has other plans.

He persuades Ali that instead of selling the car, they should “trade up” the items they collect on their trip to eventually reach the monetary amount Ali needs. Agreeing with Nico’s crazy plan, Ali sets off on a unique adventure that is unlike anything she ever could have expected.

And it’s through Ali’s travels, through the strangers she meets and the things that they value—and why they value them—that Ali eventually comes to understand her father and how his life may not have been as easy and carefree as she previously thought. Because just like the seemingly insignificant objects Ali collects, not everything is exactly as it appears.

Wow, that was sublime. The Geography of Lost Things was such the right read for me! I have read a few Jessica Brody books before but this is by far my new favorite. I'm so glad I signed up for this blog tour and I can't wait to read what Brody writes next. 

Okay, first of all, I feel like this is the perfect contemporary book. It feels raw and real, yet still hopeful and cute. Ali is dealing with heavy stuff and I viscerally felt her pain as well. The flashbacks with her father and all the family issues were executed so well. Also, the tension and issues between her and Nico also felt realistic and nuanced -- not just concocted for teenage drama. I highlighted so many quotes in my copy of the book. 

Still, despite all the heavy emotion, I laughed and smiled at so many parts. I love the little "quizzes" that Ali gives herself. And her rules for the road while she was driving with Nico made me laugh (although I wanted her to break all of them). Speaking of Nico, I loved the banter between them. However, if I start using Fungicide or Shih tzu as swear words, I'm blaming this book. 

Also, the most impressive part of this book is that I loved the road trip aspect. I was a little nervous going in because normally road trip books are not for me. However, I felt that the road trip was so vital to the story - to the metaphor of Ali's growth - and it was so fun seeing them go on adventures on the Pacific Coast. As a California-born Oregonian, this coast has been my home my whole life and I loved having a book set where I'm familiar. 

Pick this book up. I can't recommend The Geography of Lost Things enough. There's a wonderful romance, an excellent look into family dynamics and grief, music, adventure, and a 1968 Firebird. What's not to like? 

4/5 Stars 
*Received for free in exchange for an honest review*

About the Author 

Jessica Brody is the author of more than 15 books for teens, tweens, and adults including Addie Bell’s Shortcut to Growing Up, A Week of Mondays, Boys of Summer, 52 Reasons to Hate My Father, and the three books in the sci-fi Unremembered trilogy. She’s also the author of the Descendants: School of Secrets series, based on the hit Disney Channel original movie, Descendants. Her books have been translated and published in over 23 countries and Unremembered and 52 Reasons to Hate My Father are currently in development as major motion pictures. She lives with her husband and four dogs and splits her time between California and Colorado.
Visit her online at Follow her on Twitter or Instagram @JessicaBrody

And here's a Giveaway: 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good Luck!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Blog Tour: Perfect Harmony

Here's the full tour schedule!
Hosted by FFBC Tours

Perfect Harmony by Emily Albright 
Amberjack Publishing 
September 18, 2018 
Young Adult Contemporary Romance

Pippa Wyndham is a top cellist―she’d never settle for anything less. Determined to get into the nation’s most prestigious music college, nothing’s going to stand in her way . . . Until her senior year of high school when a new guy from a fancy New York conservatory transfers to her school. 

Declan Brogan’s cocky, and he knows how amazing he is at the cello. He has every intention of knocking Pippa out of first chair and showing her who really belongs on top. Forced together when assigned a duet, their personal competition and mutual dislike transform into a teasing friendship.

Torn between her childhood crush and the boy who threatens her dreams, Pippa finds herself at risk of losing her best friend, her future, and the boy who makes her heart melt. Struggling to make things right, Pippa discovers that sometimes the thing you want the most doesn’t always end up being the thing you need.

Perfect Harmony by Emily Albright was such a cute, feel-good read. I read it super fast over the course of a day and had a huge grin on my face the whole time. If you're looking for a light but super adorable read I can't recommend this enough! 

One thing I really loved about the book is how it was set in Portland, Oregon. I'm an Oregonian so I loved reading about my home state. It was so cool! Also, Albright's little details about Oregon, such as the PDX carpet, really made the book feel authentic. 

Also, I loved all the scenes in NYC! I recently went there and I loved revisiting some of my favorite spots while reading. I was living vicariously through Pippa. Additionally, all the college talk was also super relatable. Every time  OSU or U of O was mentioned I was "look there's my state schools!".

I loved the music aspect of the book. I was in school orchestra (as a violinist) myself for seven years and my best friend is a talented cellist. Having the importance and power of music highlighted was fantastic. All the orchestra scenes really struck the right note with me ;)

I'll warn you right now that there's a love triangle in the book. I didn't mind it in the least (although it helped that I felt it was very clear the whole time who she really liked). In fact, the romance was so sweet and I was rooting for the characters the entire time. Also, Declan wasn't a jerk - even though they had a little musical competition going - and he treated Pippa amazingly. 

All in all, I had a ball reading Perfect Harmony. The romance is sweet and exciting, the friendship and family dynamics were complex, and I loved seeing Oregon and school orchestra represented! 

4/5 Stars 
*received for free in exchange for an honest review*

About the Author

Emily Albright is the author of EVERYDAY MAGIC and THE HEIR AND THE SPARE, both available now from Simon Pulse. Her next novel PERFECT HARMONY will release 9.25.2018. 

She's a writer, a major bookworm, a lover of romantic movies, a wife, a mother, an owner of one adorable (yet slightly insane) cockapoo, and uses way too many :).

And here's a Giveaway! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway Enter to win one of three (3) copies of Perfect Harmony (USA only) 

Good Luck and Happy Reading :)

Monday, September 10, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday: Hidden Gems

There are so many books that deserve more publicity and love. Here are a few of my beloved books I picked up on a whim. They deserve more readers! 

1. Otherbound by Corrine Duyvis
So I've talked about this one a lot but I couldn't not add it! Otherbound is such a fun, diverse fantasy from 2014 that deserves so much more hype. 

2. Summers at Castle Auburn by Sharon Shinn
This is my absolute favorite Sharon Shinn book of all time. I am so glad I picked up this older gem on a whim. 

3. Roses and Rot by Kat Howard
Rose and Rot blew my mind. If you're an artist or a performer (or if you like magical realism) read this! 

4. Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens
Murder Most Unladylike is a middle grade book that I absolutely adore and think more YA fans should pick up. I had such a blast reading this clever first book in an amazing kid's mystery series. 

5. Places No One Knows by Brenna Yovanoff
This is such an underrated book that surprised me so much. It was incredible! 

6. The Season by Sarah MacLean
I picked this book up many years ago at my local library and it started my love for regency era london! 

7. Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith
A while ago, while I was at Powell's, I picked up a used copy of Crown Duel. I had so much fun reading this treasure!

8. Up to this Pointe by Jennifer Longo
As a ballet dancer, I'm pretty picky about what ballet books I read. But this was so realistic and amazing and unique!

9. On the Edge of Gone by Corrine Duyvis
Yes, I know. This is another book by Duyvis. I just love her books.

10. The Idiot by Elif Batuman 
This is another book I just picked up on a whim. I read it while on my England trip and on the plane rides back. I was so immersed and was laughing and awe-struck the whole time. 

Thanks for stopping by! 

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

If you loved To All The Boys I've Loved Before...

Hi! Have you read To All the Boys I've Loved Before until the spine broke? Did you watch the movie the moment it was released on Netflix and proceed to re-watch it three times? Do you need something new to read or watch or obsess over?

If you answered yes to these questions... then this post is for you! If not, go read the book, watch the movie, and come back! Now, let's start!


(you may be wondering why X-MEN is up there with all the cute flicks... 
it's because Lana Condor is in it!) 

Bonus Idea: 

If you're a fan of trying new things you should get your hands on some Yakult (the Korean yogurt drink from the film!) 

It's apparently becoming prettttyyyy popular right now thanks to the movie ;)

Now go forth and find some new favorite books and movies! 

(and, in the meantime, let's all cross our fingers for a sequel!) 

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Review: All the Birds in the Sky

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Anders 
Published: January 2016

A novel about the end of the world--and the beginning of our future

Childhood friends Patricia Delfine and Laurence Armstead didn't expect to see each other again, after parting ways under mysterious circumstances during high school. After all, the development of magical powers and the invention of a two-second time machine could hardly fail to alarm one's peers and families.

But now they're both adults, living in the hipster mecca of San Francisco, and the planet is falling apart around them. Laurence is an engineering genius who's working with a group that aims to avert catastrophic breakdown through technological intervention into the changing global climate. Patricia is a graduate of Eltisley Maze, the hidden academy for the world's magically gifted, and works with a small band of other magicians to secretly repair the world's ever-growing ailments. Little do they realize that something bigger than either of them, something begun years ago in their youth, is determined to bring them together--to either save the world, or plunge it into a new dark ages.

A deeply magical, darkly funny examination of life, love, and the apocalypse.

All the Birds in the Sky is such a delight. It's weird and imaginative and smart. There's not any book that I feel is similar. It's incomparable. Also, I have a feeling this will be taught in many, many literature classes. There's symbols and passages that could be analyzed over and over.

But don't worry, it's also a super fun read. You don't have to be a student or a super genius. I am a YA lover primarily and I feel a lot of other YA lovers will enjoy this. I love the quirkiness and continuous excitement that Anders incorporated into her story. 

The love story is the best part. Both Patricia and Laurence were weird children - outcasts - and found a bit of solace in each other. However, along with their similarities come extreme differences. Patricia is a witch while Laurence has a great talent for technology and science. And, when they meet again in San Francisco I was so rooting for them to end up together.

So, I can't not mention the birds. The birds that talk to Patricia as a child are such personalities that really set the tone for the story. However, my personal favorite character that wasn't human was the super computer that Laurence makes. It's wonderful and I can't wait for future readers to meet it. 

I feel as if this was such a hard book to review. I recommend just picking it up and experiencing it for yourself. There's so many specific scenes I want to talk about - but I don't want to spoil it for you. Just enjoy the ride!

P.S. Anders is such a one-of-a-kind witch with words. I can't wait to see what she writes next! And, if you disliked the Avatar: The Last Airbender movie as much as the rest of the world did, read her hilarious review here

Thanks for stopping by!