Into the Backwater

The third book that was not summer reading that I finished just yesterday was Backwater by Joan Bauer.

Ivy is on a quest. Stuck in a family overflowing with lawyers, Ivy Breedlove longs to be understood, to break free of unfair expectations and to find the truth about the mysterious hermit aunt who broke the family mold – the relative no one will talk about. With an outrageous mountain guide leading the way, Ivy sets out on the journey of a lifetime to find the missing link in the Breedlove family. But is she too late?

I loved Ivy. Even surrounded by strong-willed, loud, dominating people that are her family (a very large one – over 70 living relatives), Ivy was the most determined, strongest character in the book. She faced her fears, she stood up to her family and broke tradition with the help of her aunt.  Most importantly, she was able to uncover the past and discover how events had changed the people she knew. She did what she loved and what she believed in.

I also admire Josephine, the hermit aunt. To be able to just live in nature, to build everything she had except for a few supplies gotten from town. She seemed really connected to nature, which I would never be able to do, but would love to be able to do. (Make sense?)

Anyway, the book was great. I loved the quirks of the semi-dysfunctional Breedlove family, especially when they’re all together; those scenes were amazingly well written and funny too. I loved the characters and the plot, and the growth the family and rest of the characters experienced. It also doesn’t hurt that there’s a cute boy involved eventually too!

Keep reading!
~Yours Truly

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Another Lauren Barnholdt

The second book I finished that was NOT my summer reading was Two Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt.

There are two sides to every breakup.
This is Jordan and Courtney, totally in love. Sure, they were an unlikely high school couple. But they clicked; it worked. They’re even going to the same college, and driving cross-country together for orientation.
Then Jordan dumps Courtney — for a girl he met on the Internet.
It’s too late to change plans, so the road trip is on. Courtney’s heartbroken, but figures she can tough it out for a few days. La la la — this is Courtney pretending not to care.
But in a strange twist, Jordan cares. A lot.
Turns out, he’s got a secret or two that he’s not telling Courtney. And it has everything to do with why they broke up, why they can’t get back together, and how, in spite of it all, this couple is destined for each other.

Okay, again with the too much romance in a book, same as Aces Up. However, there were aspects of this book that I did like, such as how you literally got both sides of the story. Jordan and Courtney both told the story, and it was interesting and occasionally funny to read how they coincided. I also liked how the story was told from both before and during the trip. It helped put events into perspective.

But again, there was little plot other than the trip and obsessions over romance. All together, I’d say it was an okay book, but I probably wouldn’t ever reread it.

Happy trails!
~Yours Truly

Grrr….

So I’ve read exactly zero pages of my summer reading since my last post. I’ve been busy. Yet I’ve managed to finish three novels. Granted, they were all pretty short, but still. All two hundred plus pages. My summer reading’s only two fifty. I’m just not good at being forced to read something, I guess…..

So the first that I finished was Clean by Amy Reed. It’s basically about teens in rehab, but I’ll let the blurb be more descriptive. I’ve had a long day 😛

You’re probably wondering how I ended up here. I’m still wondering the same thing.
Olivia, Kelly, Christopher, Jason, and Eva have one thing in common: They’re addicts. Addicts who have hit rock bottom and been stuck together in rehab to face their problems, face sobriety, and face themselves. None of them wants to be there. None of them wants to confront the truths about their pasts. And they certainly don’t want to share their darkest secrets and most desperate fears with a room of strangers. But they’ll all have to deal with themselves and one another if they want to learn how to live. Because when you get that high, there’s nowhere to go but down, down, down.

The way this book was written was amazing. It was from the point of view of each of the main characters at one point or another, and it wasn’t hard at all to tell which POV it was from if I skipped reading the heading in the beginning. For example, and I’ll bleep out the cursing (because there was a lot, but it made the story more realistic – you don’t go to high school and not hear any cursing):

JASON: “F*** you f*** you f*** you F*** YOU.” Not kidding. Those were the first words that I read from him. (pg. 2)

EVA: “This place is a body…. We are cancerous cells. Quarantined. An epidemic. We are rogue mutations…” (pg. 2) Her POV is so descriptive because what we read is what she writes in her journal that she carries with her. She is very artistic.

And then of course there’s Olivia. Perfect, OCD, partially insane Olivia. For instance, the group leader (probably my favorite character, who I’ll get into in a moment), SHIRLEY says to Olivia: “You don’t live in the same world everyone else does…because you’ve constructed this imaginary universe where you’re the boss of everything. And it’s killing you.” (pg. 63)

And THAT is exactly why I love Shirley. She sees right into the heart of these teenagers who believe that they are alone. That they deserve to be alone. That no one understands, not even they understand, so how could anyone else? Shirley helps them see what they’ve been hiding from themselves. I loved to watch her part of the healing process these kids went through. It was painful, but she was down-to-earth about it, and straight-forward. She didn’t beat around the bush, and she didn’t brook any nonsense from anyone, not even the parents when they came to visit.

Amy Reed did an excellent job with this book, and I would recommend it to teens especially, but really anyone at an age mature enough to handle the cursing in the book.

~Yours Truly

I’m Speechless.

I JUST FOUND OUT (literally about three weeks ago) THAT THE HEARTLAND BOOKS WERE MADE INTO A CANADIAN TV SERIES!!!!! So, naturally I remembered the books and was dying to see the series. Unfortunately, you can only watch it in Canada – it never aired in the US, even though the author of the books lives in England and wrote the books set in Virginia. HOWEVER, I found them on youtube and on other sites online and watched them, and I FREAKING LOVED IT!!! My parents hated me because I was so obsessed. I watched all four seasons, so about 50 episodes (give or take), plus the Heartland Christmas movie. It was amazing!

But then I realized that I had nothing to base it on. I hadn’t read the Heartland books that I had in, well, lets just say a really long time. So this morning I got out the four that I have and read the third and fourth books and I must say: It just doesn’t compare. The TV show is more of a drama, and for a wider-ranged audience. The books were for preteen girls who wanted to read about horses – it just doesn’t cut it for  me anymore. I realized how many changes the TV series made to the storyline, and honestly, I DIDN’T MIND! And trust me, I ALWAYS mind. I actually liked the changes, and am soooo happy that they did. Instead of putting on another “The Saddle Club” series for preteens, it presents a storyline full of drama and romance, happiness, confusion, and tears. It really makes you involved in the characters’ lives, and I honestly can’t wait until season five comes out in September and I can find them online.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures of the series:

Heartland Cast

Amy, Ty, and Spartan

Jack and Lisa

Peter, Lou, and Max

Jack and Amy

Ashley and Caleb

Just had to post about this – still haven’t finished my summer reading book. Can’t actually find my summer reading book. I’ll get to it sooner or later….
~Yours Truly

Wolfsbane

So I FINALLY read it!! (Still haven’t finished my summer reading – this is getting bad…) I can’t really say too much about it, but here’s the blurb first:

This thrilling sequel to the much-talked-about Nightshade begins just where it ended-Calla Tor wakes up in the lair of the Searchers, her sworn enemy, and she’s certain her days are numbered. But then the Searchers make her an offer-one that gives her the chance to destroy her former masters and save the pack-and the man-she left behind. Is Ren worth the price of her freedom? And will Shay stand by her side no matter what? Now in control of her own destiny, Calla must decide which battles are worth fighting and how many trials true love can endure and still survive.  ~Courtesy of bn.com

Other than the fact that I thought it went really (and I mean REALLY) fast – I finished it in about two or three hours, I did really enjoy it. There were a lot of interesting new characters, a totally different side to the history books, and even though not a whole lot happened, a lot of things were figured out. I don’t have all the time in the world right now, unfortunately, but I did really enjoy this book.

Hopefully only after my summer reading is done,
I’ll remain
Yours Truly

Weekend BookBlogger Hop: 4

The Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Crazy-for-Books. Basically, if you blog about books, answer a question provided and if you link to their post in your blog, you can add your blog to their list of participants. This week’s question is:

“What is the one ARC you would love to get your hands on right now?”

And my answer would have to be the fifth Gallagher Girls book by Ally Carter. I still have yet to read Uncommon Criminals, but I’m sure it will be great, and I CANNOT wait to read the next installment that follows Cam in her spy schooling and the intrigue that surrounds her.

~Yours Truly