SPIN

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“A somber but meritorious tale that profoundly examines a subject affecting adolescents and adults alike . . . Farnham masterfully dramatizes the serious subject matter.” Kirkus Reviews

“A beautifully written, suspenseful and poignant page-turner.” – E.S. Carter, USA Today Bestselling Author

“Spin is a pacey, edgy read which immediately grabbed me; a compulsive page-turner.” – Sarah L. King, Author of Ethersay

“I couldn’t put it down . . . gripping and suspenseful.” – Cathy, Goodreads Reviewer

“It covers heavy topics which are very prominent in current society and will send anybody on an emotional roller coaster.” – Kayla, Goodreads Reviewer

“A true reminder of how you have no idea what’s going on behind closed doors, or behind people’s facades.” – Sophie Ruthven, Amazon Reviewer

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Cover Reveals, Giveaways, SPIN

Cover Reveal: SPIN

SPIN ebook Cover

Cover Design: Queau Designs

Release Date: April 2019

BLURB

Sixteen-year-old Jenna Kemp is a typical high school girl, complete with a loyal group of friends and a seemingly understanding boyfriend. But when the demons from Jenna’s childhood resurface, she’s suddenly spinning out of control–drinking, partying–anything to numb the pain of the past. After distancing herself from her friends and befriending an outcast, her friends and family start questioning and judging her choices.

But when Jenna doesn’t come home one night, her friends and family realize it’s more than just adolescent rebellion. Jenna’s mysterious disappearance proves that there’s more on the line than they realized. As they sift through a series of her personal diaries, the truth becomes terrifying. Will Jenna’s final diary entry reveal the greatest mystery of all–her whereabouts?

GIVEAWAY

★✩★ Amazon Gift Cards! ★✩★

See the pinned post on my Facebook page for details.

Book Reviews

Book Review: Living in Suspension by Winifred Morris

Living in Suspension is about Sky, an unhappy teen who despises high school. At first, I didn’t like Sky very much and felt that his problems were a direct result of his poor choices and bad attitude. He doesn’t put forth much effort academically, he skips school, his group of friends is comprised of dropouts and troublemakers, he acts like a jerk to his parents, and his overall demeanor is angry and mopey. So why the four-star rating? Because by the end of this novel I grew to understand and like this character, who happens to be the perfect portrait of an average kid who simply isn’t hardwired to succeed in a traditional classroom setting. I also enjoy Morris’ writing style. She takes her time letting you get to know her characters, and she has a way with inserting a bit of humor where you wouldn’t normally expect it.

In addition to Sky’s difficulties with succeeding in mainstream classes, Morris highlights his battles with authority, his struggles to be a good friend, and his crush on the popular neighbor girl. I should also mention that there’s a story within this story. The secondary story is a novel Sky is working on for a creative writing class–the only class he’s ever really enjoyed. This novel ends up providing clarity and hope for Sky in the end.

Even though Living in Suspension is geared toward teens, I think adults would benefit from reading it as well. As a warning to teachers who might want to use this book in the classroom (because it would be perfect for discussion related to differentiated learning environments and teen issues in general) and parents, this book contains instances of swearing and drug use. These instances added authenticity to the subject matter, and nothing was over-the-top or added simply for shock value.

A few of my favorite parts:

“Then she does this smile that seems to make the years fall away again. On warm summer nights when we used to play hide and seek, whenever she found me, she would smile just like that. But she shakes her hair the way she did before, and it’s too red, too pretty. All those years since we were friends jump back into place. She’s one of those girls who smiles at everyone.”

“I was the extra luggage my parents insisted on dragging along even though they would probably have no use for it later.”

“I don’t know why I cried, but I remember how it felt–the twisting in my stomach, the tightness in my chest. In fact, now I’m feeling it again, as if memories carry their feelings with them kind of like bad smells. You open one up, and there it is smothering you again. And they seem to work the way worm holes are supposed to work in space, carrying you on to other bad-smelling memories.”

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AMAZON

 

Disclosure: I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Book Promotion, Don't Call Me Kit Kat

Don’t Call Me Kit Kat is just $.99 for a limited time!

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Available only on AMAZON.

*Sale ends on 7/27.

Description:

Junior high is where things really start to happen. Cliques form and break apart. Couples are made and destroyed. And a reputation is solidified that you won’t ever be able to escape. Everything you do and say, and everyone you spend your time with, matters.

Katie Mills knows that. She gets it. That’s why she tried so hard to get in with the cool girls at school. And why she was so devastated when those efforts found her detained for shoplifting and laughed out of cheer squad tryouts.

But Katie has more to worry about than just fitting in. Her parents are divorced and always fighting. Her sister never has time for her. And her friends all seem to be drifting apart. Even worse? The boy she has a crush on is dating the mean girl at school.

Everything is a mess, and Katie doesn’t feel like she has control over any of it. Certainly not over her weight, which has always topped out at slightly pudgier than normal—at least, according to her mother.

So when she happens to catch one of the popular girls throwing up in the bathroom one day, it sparks an idea. A match that quickly engulfs her life in flames.

Is there any going back once she gets started down this path?

And would she even want to if she could?

Still not sure if this is the book for you? Visit Goodreads to find out what other readers had to say about Don’t Call Me Kit Kat.

Book Reviews

Book Review – Mine: A Love Story by Scott Prussing

I purchased Mine: A Love Story without knowing anything about it because the cover appealed to me. I had recently finished reading You by Caroline Kepnes, so for some reason, I thought this book might be similar. (Deranged person obsesses over someone after one date–something like that.) Turns out, this book is a young adult novel about a young woman and the new relationships she develops during her first year in college. She makes some nice, reliable girlfriends, but runs into some trouble when it comes to the guys (one in particular, rather). As I read this book, I constantly felt like I was waiting for something to happen, and for the most part, nothing I thought was going to happen happened. And nothing particularly dramatic occurred either, which isn’t a bad thing, but I tend to enjoy over-the-top scandal and gut-wrenching heartache.

Memorable Quote:

“A girl’s figure is the one place where B’s or C’s are way better than A’s.”

This is a good, clean YA read with A LOT of references to Taylor Swift. In my opinion, it would be most appropriate for a high schooler.

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AMAZON

Book Reviews

Book Review: More than a Moment by Kristin Albright

More than a Moment starts out with Julia’s boyfriend (Tyler) abruptly breaking up with her just before their senior year in high school. As if that isn’t enough, Julia is also a bit on the outs with her friends after being laid up with a horseback riding injury over the summer, and one of her so-called best friends appears to have grown much closer to Tyler than normal. Luckily, she strikes up a friendship with Lucas (a classmate and immigrant farmhand who works for Tyler’s parents) and, in doing so, learns a lot about true friendship, love, following your heart and standing up for what you believe in.

“For anyone who has ever wanted more time.”

I suspected from the opening line that this book would touch my heart, and I was right. However, I wasn’t expecting to feel so many different emotions—from sadness, anger and anticipation to embarrassment for the characters and relief. All a result of the themes covered in this lovely YA novel: friendship, peer pressure, bullying, stereotypes, racism, immigration, young love and romance.

Aside from the range of emotions I felt while reading, I loved the realistic interactions between the characters, all of the interesting information about horses, and the way Albright tackles the topic of illegal immigration. This is the first fictional book for teens I’ve encountered that highlights several current points related to the issue, all of which are seamlessly woven into the storyline so as not to make the book seem like a lesson in sociology or politics.

Two final things that really tugged at my heart strings were the romance between Julia and Lucas, and Albright’s focus on the significance of blinks (and all that can occur with just one) throughout the story. Here are some of my favorite romance- and blink-related quotes:

“Maybe that’s what life is—one giant series of blinks. The problem is you never know which ones will become your story until after they pass. It can make you want to squeeze your eyes shut with fear, never to blink again, or flutter your eyelashes like crazy, just to see what’s ahead.”

“But there’s no rewind and no fast-forward—just blink after unexpected blink. It doesn’t seem fair how fast the good blinks seem to pass us by.”

“His eyes sparkled like a guy who hadn’t had a bad blink day in a long time.”

“I stared at our fingers as they intertwined with one another—a zigzag of caramel and cream.”

“So, in a perfect world we’d say lots of hellos and goodbyes?” I teased. “Millions—all back to back—so we’d never be apart.”

“There are as many little stories in you as stars in the sky,’ he sighed, “and I want to know them all.”

If you’re looking for a clean YA read with serious everyday themes, then I highly recommend this one.

GOODREADS

AMAZON

Book Reviews

Book Review: OC Me by Kristin Albright

OC Me is a realistic, clean read for teens. It’s especially perfect for those who may be struggling with OCD or anyone who is curious about what it might be like for someone suffering from the disorder.

What I really like about this story is the slow buildup of Amy’s OCD. It isn’t like *POOF* one day she just has it. First, she suffers the trauma of losing her aunt, and then the disorder begins to manifest. While she copes with her aunt’s death (and an sbsentee mother), she struggles to understand the irrational thoughts that begin cropping up out of nowhere. As Amy’s disorder progresses, she also starts to experience paranoia and repeated “what if” thoughts.

In addition to the OCD storyline, there is a bit of romance. Albright did a great job of weaving Amy and James’s blossoming relationship into the story; the progression was sweet and believable. It was also a good way to demonstrate how scary it can be for those with anxiety-related disorders to disclose their issues to others, as the fear of rejection can be overwhelming.

Each chapter begins with a quote. Here are some of my favorites:

“We tell lies when we are afraid…afraid of what we don’t know, afraid of what others will think, afraid of what will be found out about us. But every time we tell a lie, the thing that we fear grows stronger.” ~ Tad Williams, To Green Angel Tower

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.” ~ Mark Twain

“The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.” ~ Earnest Hemingway

GOODREADS

AMAZON

Book Reviews

Book Review: Little White Lies (The Girlfriends #1) by Jodie Esch

Little White Lies is a quick YA read perfect for both teens and parents of teens. Rachel, an insecure and impressionable eighth grader with an absentee mother, fails to fully appreciate the loving, supportive family that surrounds her. Feelings of abandonment and discontentment lead her to become a compulsive liar. The little white lies she tells may seem like a mild case of acting out, but things take a turn for the worse when she meets a new “friend” in an Internet chat room.

Rachel’s character is believable and well-developed. She’s not the worst teen imaginable, but she’s moody and yearning for attention. And like a lot of teens, she isn’t able to clearly see how much others care about her. When she begins chatting with the online stranger (who claims to be a high school student) another layer of teen naïveté is explored. I really like how the plotline with the online “boyfriend” was executed, and I appreciate that Esch never took things over the top. All of Rachel’s thoughts and actions were realistic, as was her relationship with best friend Steph.

This is a quick, clean read that touches on issues many teens experience, including feelings of abandonment, loneliness, low self-esteem and creepy Internet encounters. I look forward to reading all of the books in this series.

GOODREADS

AMAZON