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Magan: The Originals by Cat Patrick

book cover for The Originals by Cat PatrickThe Originals by Cat Patrick (website | twitter)
Publication Date: May 7, 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Pages: 304
Target audience: Young Adult
Keywords: sisters, clones, scandal, hiding
Format read: ARC received via Edelweiss (Thank you!)

Summary: Lizzie, Betsey, and Ella split each and every day into thirds. They’re allowed outside their house to spend their third of the day acting as one person, Elizabeth Best. No one knows their secret, but they’re tired of pretending they aren’t clones and desperately wish for individuality.

Imagine this:

Two other girls look exactly like you. Your mother has you pretending to be one person. Your days are broken into thirds, very scheduled, and you each only spend your portion of the day outside your home. No one knows the truth about you and your sisters. Why?

You’re clones.

Lizzie and her sisters Betsey and Ella have been pretending to be one person since they moved to San Diego when they were nine years old. Due to a huge scandal and to protect the girls, their mother devised a calculated plan and schedule to keep their secret hidden. No one can know the truth.

But what happens when the girls begin questioning their reality?
What if all the questioning reveals that your mother has secrets of her own?

The questioning begins when Ella and Lizzie begin to fall for two different boys and their mother makes the executive decision about who they (yes, they) will “date.” Lizzie’s heart is broken that Sean isn’t chosen and Dave (his repertoire looks much better on paper than  in person) is. She has to pretend to be into Dave during her afternoon hours at school when her heart is pining for Sean, the boy who is a talented writer and photographer and makes plans to meet up with her during half time.

There’s so so so much that unfolds in Cat Patrick’s The Originals. First of all — cloning? what? — such an interesting and unique storyline. The concept alone fascinates me. Personally I don’t think I could ever clone something; I would be so let down if this re-created person/animal weren’t exactly the same as the original. What if it had completely different idiosyncrasies? And then there’s the whole psychological aspect of cloning that really weighs on me. What does it feel like to be the replacement? (For the record, I think Patrick tackles the psychological so brilliantly in both of her stories I’ve read — The Originals and Forgotten.)

For Ella, Lizzie, and Betsey, I found it bewildering that they hadn’t really questioned their mother’s decisions very much. There’s this whole element that will really have you reeling from how much the girls are afraid to dive into the truth. Maybe they’re suffering from something like Stockholm Syndrome? More and more, as they dug deeper for answers, I found myself crazily going through the pages. (My kindle couldn’t keep up!) I had to know why their mother would isolate them so much. To trust her or to turn her into the cops? — that was the ultimate question.

It felt so amazing to experience another Cat Patrick book. She sets the scene so well and really makes sure you’re getting a sense of the entire scope of the story while leaving a nice dose of intrigue to keep you glued to the pages. Bonus points also go to The Originals for being a standalone. I loved that nothing was drawn out and the action was continually moving forward to wrap up nicely in one book.

Cat’s other book, Revived,  is on my bookshelf, glaring at me, waiting to be read. I might just have to abandon everything else to continue reveling in another of Patrick’s books.

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May 5, 2013 - 11:38 am

Estelle's Shelve It >> Cinco de Mayo Books, Estelle - […] The GLORIOUS list of May releases Magan’s glowing review of Winger by Andrew Smith My EEE I’m so excited review of Wild Awake by Hilary T. Smith A review of Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike, which came out this week. Magan’s exciting review of The Originals by Cat Patrick […]

May 3, 2013 - 11:20 am

May 2013 Young Adult Book Releases - […] | Amazon | Magan’s Review […]

May 1, 2013 - 3:32 am

Laura @ the Booksmartie - So, at first this absolutely did not sound like my kind of story, but…woah. The plot seems SO intruiging-and so original. I think I have to get this book and soon :)

April 30, 2013 - 6:57 pm

Renae @ Respiring Thoughts - I’ve read Patrick’s Revived and didn’t care for it quite so much, but I really want to read The Originals. I do love how this author picks super original and fascinating science fiction concepts. I love the idea of three clones living one life, and it really sounds like this book is seriously engrossing, which is perfect for this topic.

April 29, 2013 - 9:19 pm

Cassie - I loved Revived! And I simply CANT WAIT for this one as well as her book that she is writing with Suzanne Young, Just Like Fate! So glad to hear you loved this one!

April 29, 2013 - 5:10 pm

Mel@thedailyprophecy. - I’ve read one book about cloning before and I was so fascinated by the concept. I can’t wait to read another book about it! :)


April 29, 2013 - 4:13 pm

Janita @ Book, Interrupted - I am so desperate for a stand-alone, and this sounds awesome! Thanks for the great review, I’ll definitely check this one out and add it to my TBR list.

April 29, 2013 - 1:51 pm

Annette - Ohhh. I’ve read Forgotten and Revived and enjoyed them both. She always comes up with an interesting premise. I’m putting this on my list. Thanks!

April 29, 2013 - 12:15 pm

Alexa Y. - A book about CLONES? I’m definitely interested in checking this one out. It sounds like Patrick did a great job making each girl sound different (despite having to pretend to be one person), and I want to see what they do about it. Plus, that romance sounds wonderfully different too!

April 29, 2013 - 10:35 am

Natalie - Oh man. This sounds so good!! I seriously need to stop adding my books to my TBR list but I reallllly think this one deserves to be on it. It sounds so interesting, and I just want to know how it all turns out!!! Great review Magan :)

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Estelle: The Boyfriend App by Katie Sise

The Boyfriend App by Katie SiseThe Boyfriend App by Katie Sise ( website | tweet )
Publication Date: April 30, 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pages: 320
Target audience: Young adult
Keywords: friendships, tech, mobile world, contests, computers
Format read: ARC from Edelweiss via Publisher.

Summary: It’s been three years since Audrey lost her dad and her life changed. Her best friend got mean, and the popularity she thought she had in the bag turned out to be non-existent. But she has found some contentment with Hector (her computer) and her other tech savvy friends. When a contest to create an amazing new app is announced and the prize is a full college scholarship, Audrey knows she just has to win. The entry is The Boyfriend App, an instrument to bring well-matched people together. And while it seems it have a positive effect on things at first, she never imagined how things might spiral out of control.

Reasons I love Audrey:

» She isn’t embarrassed that a sports bra is her favorite undergarment.
» She carries around a lucky rabbit’s foot that her dad gave her.
» She loves her computer so much that she named him Hector + she’s basically a computer genius.
» She’s confident without being braggy, and she really treasures her friendships.

Can you see why I was rooting for Audrey so much during The Boyfriend App? After all she had been through with her dad’s sudden death, the rough (and unnecessary) treatment from her ex-best friend, I just wanted her to build the most amazing app, win the contest, and maybe even get the boy.

Unfortunately, nothing came that easy for her. I don’t know if it was the book cover or the synopsis that made me think so but The Boyfriend App is more than some fluffy high school story. Sise manages to weave in a ton of technical terms, really emphasizing Audrey’s tech strengths and also truly describing the major digital influences that have infilitrated the life of today’s teenager. It was fun to read about Audrey’s cousin, Lindsay, and her successful fashion blog, and even the use of social media to market The Boyfriend App. (But then again, I love this stuff!)

Just as Audrey’s app gains popularity and starts to change the way people perceive her, Sise introduces an interesting and unexpected layer to the plot. I’m not sure if she meant to make some grand statement about the influence technology has on our society (are we being brainwashed?) but she certainly threw me for some very welcome, refreshing loops (that included a makeout scene in the cafeteria that felt like a food fight a.k.a total chaos!).

One detail I absolutely loved was how culturally diverse Audrey’s high school was. This is probably one of the first books that reminded me so much of my own high school experience in that way. And you know, her friends just rocked. I loved that Lindsay, a family member!, was her best friend and always had her back, and I also appreciated how much Audrey wanted to keep these friends, even so much as to pretend she didn’t like Aidan as much as she did because she didn’t want to lose him completely. (Though, at times, I just wanted to be like: Girl, he LIKES you. Believe it! because she doubts his every move so much.)

I really enjoyed The Boyfriend App for all of its quirks and especially the chances that Sise took with her plot and her characters. It was a really fun ride that had me scratching my head (that’s how you build apps?!), laughing out loud (the geeky boy discovering the importance of a signature accessory), and reeling over the “will they won’t they” couple of the season. (And wondering if someone was going to lock the ex-best friend in a closet and throw away the key — oh the joys of a bully!)

Katie Sise is definitely an author I will be looking forward to reading in the future!

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January 13, 2015 - 8:00 am

Real Life Friend & Real Life Diversity | Dive Into Diversity - […] The Boyfriend App by Katie Sise | How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr | Just One Year by Gayle Forman […]

October 30, 2013 - 12:05 am

Allison: The Boyfriend App | Katie Sise | Book Review - […] Rather Be Reading: “The Boyfriend App is more than some fluffy high school story…” […]

April 29, 2013 - 6:07 am

Lori - I thought this was a fluffy book as well. I’m happy to hear it’s more than that! It sounds really fun.

April 28, 2013 - 5:52 am

VeganYANerds - This is the most positive review of this book that I’ve read! Most say the ending is unrealistic and it was putting me off reading it but yours has set me straight. I really like the sound of Audrey, she sounds like a clever, geeky girl!

April 26, 2013 - 10:31 pm

Aneeqah @ My Not So Real Life - Estelle, to be honest, when I first saw this book, I totally thought that it was going to be that fluffy high school book. So it’s a bit surprising that there’s so much depth in this book! The whole thing about building apps sounds really cool, and since I find this kind of stuff interesting, I think I’d enjoy this book. Plus, Audrey really sounds fantastic! She sounds like a MC I’d totally be able to fall in love with.

I’ll have to get my hands on a copy of this book now, Estelle! It seems like something I can’t miss. Fantastic review! <3

April 25, 2013 - 6:09 pm

Kimmy - Yay, I’m looking forward to this book even more!

April 25, 2013 - 4:19 pm

Sara (of the Page Sage) - As soon as I heard about the Boyfriend App I was so excited, so I’m glad it’s so great! It’s awesome that the MC has such great friends and that she’s a proper computer nerd. I can’t wait to read this one!

April 25, 2013 - 4:07 pm

Courtney @ Courtney Reads A Lot - I have to be honest with you. Up until now, I had seen this book around but never really read the synopsis. But your review definitely has me intrigued! I love how tech savvy Audrey is and I think she would be a favorite character of mine! Great review! I’ll have to check this out.

April 25, 2013 - 1:38 pm

Alexa Y. - I’m glad that this book worked out for you! It sounds pretty cute, and I’m definitely interested in reading it. I think Audrey is a character I can definitely fall in love with, and I look forward to reading it!

April 25, 2013 - 12:05 pm

Rachel - This book sounds so me. I need an app like that. But, I also love how tech savvy the MC is because that stuff is basically my life. I kind of REALLY want to know what the plot twist is because I’ve seen some people say that they hated it and it totally derailed the book, while others liked it. Ugh. WANT.

April 25, 2013 - 10:45 am

Brittany @ The Book Addict's Guide - Ohhh I’m so glad to read your review of this! For some reason I was really iffy about it. You have renewed my hope! :) It sounds super cute, and I love all the geeky/technical terms!

April 25, 2013 - 9:24 am

Bookworm1858 - I didn’t end up liking this one as much as you did because the characters didn’t much pop. I did really love Lindsay though especially because she has a blog!

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Magan: The Academy: Game On by Monica Seles and James LaRosa

The Academy Game On by Monica SelesThe Academy: Game On by Monica Seles and James LaRosa
Publication: June 4, 2013
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA for Children
Pages: 272
Target audience: Young adult
Keywords: romance, friendship, tennis, new school
Format read: NetGalley eBook from Publisher (Thanks!)

Summary: From small town girl to up and coming tennis star at a prestigious school, Maya’s new life is nothing like she expected.

Who loves books full of competition, heart throb boys, and boarding school? Yes, yes, and yes please.

Maya’s just been accepted to The Academy to train to become a professional tennis athlete and finish high school. After four attempts to earn a scholarship, she finally feels like her dreams are within her reach. But she’s nervous and determined to prove herself. At least… that’s the attitude she has when she first arrives.

Maya is motivated, especially since she’s on a six-month probation period. Cleo, Maya’s roommate, is quite the opposite of Maya – disorderly, attention-seeking, and blunt – but is also a great source of inspiration for staying focused because she’s also on scholarship. Things are golden as Maya makes friends with Cleo and Renee, the beautiful girl with a naughty reputation, until she meets Travis.

Travis is Nails Reed’s son (the owner of The Academy). He’s a star football player and on his way to following in his father’s footsteps. New-girl Maya somehow catches Travis’ eye and her whole world seems to change and she’s experiencing so many new things – clubs with celebrities, a private flight to Brazil for a dance lesson, and a significant upgrade in her housing. Down-to-earth, work-hard-Maya is suddenly replaced with a girl who forgets to make it to the courts for practice because she’s spent so much time beautifying herself and she abandons her best friends in favor of hanging out with Nicole (the biggest celebrity at The Academy).

And then there’s this awkward situation with Travis’ brother, Jake. Maya finds herself caught in a professional game of tug-of-war with Travis and Jake. Her feelings, however, don’t always make sense. She seems physically attracted to Travis, but unsure of his motives. And the tension is pretty delightful between she and Jake, but there’s really not a whole lot of explanation before –  BAM! – Maya is in the thick of a sticky situation.

That really sums up a lot of my feelings toward The Academy: Game On. I assumed a large portion of the story would be about this unknown girl trying to make something of herself, and that just didn’t turn out to be so. Maya’s purpose at The Academy wasn’t clear. There was so little time practicing. There were never any meets, tournaments, or games to prepare for. Ultimately, I felt the focus of the story was lost and I much rather would have read about Maya trying to prove herself than gallivanting around, pretending to be someone she wasn’t. Everything that comes her way falls too easily in her lap.

I never really found myself settling into the rhythm of the story because I wasn’t quite sure who I could trust. The characters were constantly undulating back and forth between admirable and over-the-top dramatic. And the ending? It was left open-ended for the possibility of more to come, meaning that while Maya may have had some minor growth in the last pages of the book, we don’t really get the opportunity to see that come to fruition. Nor do we see where she ends up and what becomes of her time at The Academy.

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April 28, 2013 - 5:53 am

VeganYANerds - I haven’t seen anyone else mention this book but it doesn’t sound like one that will impress most readers. Thanks for reviewing it, Magan

April 24, 2013 - 1:23 pm

Alexa Y. - This book reminds me of a few things: A Cinderella Story, The Princess Diaries and Gossip Girl. I feel like elements from each were fused into the story, which is interesting. I would have preferred to see more about Maya trying to succeed at the Academy in terms of her sport and scholarship, instead of this society game/identity crisis that appears to be happening. Still, that must have been an interesting story!

April 24, 2013 - 1:15 pm

Liviania - I figured I’d just skip this one and now I know I’ll skip it.

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It’s That Time of Year…

I really like using Christmas carols to express joy all year round. This time? Baseball is back, baby!

It’s almost been a full month of baseball on our television (pizza Fridays are so much better with it) and just last week, my husband and I went to our first game in a pretty long time. We both grew up Yankees fans, and went to quite a few games when we were kids. In the years we’ve been together we’ve enjoyed one championship win, said goodbye to the the iconic “old” stadium, and visited the brand new one. (Truth: we miss the old stadium so much.) It’s been a wild ride (and this year our team is pretty questionable) but it’s one of those hobbies we actually have in common. (A story for another day.)

Ladies and gents, it was nice to be back.

Yankee Stadium

To enjoy the sight, sounds, and some eats too…

Adventures at Yankee Stadium

And hey, we won the game — always a great bonus.

With all the excitement of the new season, I can’t help but think of the some of the books I LOVE because of their baseball themes! I wanted to share a few of them with you today!

Leading off, a dear favorite of mine:


The Comeback Season by Jennifer E. Smith

I read this one last year and it has remained my top Jennifer E. Smith reads. Smith manages to weave the tragic history of the Chicago Cubs (they haven’t won a World Series Championship in 104 years) and Ryan’s struggle to muddle through the grief associated with her father’s death. The Cubs were one of their shared interests; they both loved the team so intensely. Ryan soon meets Nick, and ties the chances of their relationship surviving to the success of the Cubs. It’s a truly beautiful story, and just oozes with love of the game.

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Curveball: The Year I Lost My Grip by Jordan Sonnenblick

This was one of those delightful reads with a great male narrator. While Peter doesn’t get much playing time in this book (he’s been injured), he has to look past his identity as someone who played on the baseball team and go after new experiences. There are so many sweet moments in this book from meeting a new girl to dealing with changes in his treasured relationship with his grandpa.

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book cover for Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally, books about mom who announces homosexuality, books about falling in love with a teacher

I think most people see this book as the “one where the girl falls for her baseball coach.” Okay, sure, that happens. But Parker’s passion for the sport is so connected to her mother that she did a lot of things that didn’t make sense… like quit playing for a game she loved so much. One of the main themes of Stealing Parker is about teamwork: with an actual team, a family, and friendships and relationships. While it’s not quite as baseball-filled as the cover originally promised, the sport still plays an important part.

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Confessions of a She-Fan by Jane Heller

Guys, it’s tough to be a fan sometimes. And I know, I know. People hate on the Yankees for their success but seriously… I remember all the games in the early 90s when we would lose every single Sunday. But anyway, Jane Heller (who I love following on Twitter) writes a book about following the team in 2007. Like many, her love of the game started very early and I really enjoyed reading her story.

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Those are the all-stars on my bookshelves!

What books do you love that have a sports theme? (It’s okay, I’ll forgive you if it’s not baseball.)

April 5, 2015 - 9:01 am

Now Batting: Books and Baseball - […] written about my love of the game before, and even included a few of my baseball book recommendations. While I’m knee deep in nostalgia over the Sunday afternoons I spent at the ballpark with my […]

April 27, 2013 - 2:13 pm

Lisa - Yes! Thank you. I’ve been wanting to read some books with baseball involved. Woo!

April 24, 2013 - 1:21 pm

Alexa Y. - This post makes me absurdly happy in a way I can’t explain. I’m not a baseball fan per se (though I love the food associated with the game, as you well know), but there’s something thrilling about the sport (and at least I understand it, unlike American football). I love your baseball book suggestions! I need to read one or two or ALL of these.

April 23, 2013 - 9:05 pm

Greg - It isn’t a very “girly” book, but I always recommend “The Soul of Baseball” by Joe Posnanski.

April 23, 2013 - 5:58 pm

Kimmy - Love this post! I’m a big baseball fan too (go Toronto Blue Jays!) and I’m definitely going to check out some of these books.

April 23, 2013 - 10:08 am

kit - Have you read The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach? I read it a while ago and that has a baseball theme, I really enjoyed it. I’m reading an Australian YA novel at the moment (The Whole of My World by Nicole Hayes) which is focused on a girl and her love of football. My favourite sport-themed book is Nick Hornby’s Fever Pitch (about football in England), but I like books about extreme sports as well – surfing and mountain climbing, stuff I’d probably never do but like reading about!

April 23, 2013 - 9:11 am

Ginger @ GReads! - There’s nothing like a hot dog & a beer at the ballpark :) I haven’t read too many books with sports themes, and not because I don’t want to, just haven’t come across a lot. Being from Texas I have a soft spot for anything “Friday Night Lights”. I’m not a huge football fan, but there’s something about those high school games – so much passion & innocence – I want a book about that!

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Estelle: The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler

The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah OcklerThe Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler ( tweet | web )
Publication Date: May 27, 2013
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 352
Target audience: Young adult
Keywords: summer, sisters, motorcycles, parents
Format read: Paperback ARC from Simon Pulse (Thank you!)

Summary: Jude is banking on the restoration of her father’s prized motorcycle to dig him out of his hazy sickness. As if things are not difficult enough at home, she realizes the person she and her father hired to do the job is a Vargas, as in part of the family that has successfully broken two of her sisters’ hearts. The oath she took years ago — to stay far far away or else — is threatened when she realizes she likes him. How could she explain that to her sisters? And how can she concentrate on her love life when the state of her family is so in flux?

Sarah Ockler is always going to have a special place in my book lovin’ heart because her novel, Twenty Boy Summer, was the first review Magan and I ever put up on RBR — our launching post! Then (almost a year later) in December, I fell in love with Ockler all over again after devouring Bittersweet (kind of a pun) and passed it on to Magan immediately. It had family, cupcakes, cute boys, and was just a good feeling read all the way around.

Well, ladies, gents, crickets, nothing in the world could have prepared me for the overwhelming amount of love I feel for The Book of Broken Hearts, a gem that has solidified Ockler’s spot on my most treasured author’s list. You have to believe me — despite a clumsy start, I read the book all the way through — twice.

The summer before college is supposed to be a time for reminiscing and having as much fun as possible, but instead of trying out for the community theatre musical or hanging out with her girlfriends every possible moment, Jude and her dad are restoring his old motorcycle. Unfortunately, Papi is in the early stages of Alzheimers and while he can’t remember where he lives or what kind of ice cream he likes, he does remember the good old days when he was cycling around Argentina with his crew. His memories make Jude hopeful: fix the bike, restore Papi’s memory.

The key to this project is Emilio, the cute guy at the motorcyle shop, a few years older than Jude, who is pumped to work on a vintage bike for the summer. There’s only one teenie tiny issue. He’s a Vargas, which means he is brothers with two of the boys who have broken the hearts of Jude’s sisters. So much so that in a fit of passion, the girls took an oath several years ago, promising to never get involved with a Vargas again. But that’s old news? Silly kid stuff, right? Well, Jude still takes the whole thing pretty seriously, a product of being the youngest sister and the pressure of the Holy Trinity, as she calls them.

But Papi likes him, and Jude is like, “This is strictly a professional thing.”

Yes, Emilio is professionally adorable and flirty. But as much as Jude paints him as this bad boy with no heart, he is patient and thoughtful and sweet too. As you can see, Jude is losing this inner battle. And the chemistry between the two was seriously felt all the way to my toes, and Ockler does the perfect job of stretching it out. Because at the same time Jude is fighting her feelings for Emilio, her dad’s condition is getting worse, her friends are MIA (wtf?), and her mom and sisters are banding together to figure out the next step for their family.

There’s nothing that makes my heart hurt as much as a sick parent, especially such a young one. I easily imagined myself in this position and felt for Jude so much. Helpless. Scared. Not only for Jude but for her mother who worked hard and left Argentina to marry her husband, and all the sisters who weren’t living at home anymore. Family is the core of this book. The absolute core, and Ockler hits upon so many relatable situations: how hard it is for family to get together, how they bond during tragedy, and also the pressure to be the person they want you to be.

Emilio says something to Jude that really struck a chord with me. He said she’s the kind of person who wishes for a time machine, to go back to the days when everything was fine and dandy and her friendships were the same and she was the little sister who never stood up for herself. The emphasis we put on the past — it’s so real and so hard to move on from. Because how can things change so quickly? But Jude has to face that, and despite the ever-changing nucleus of her family, she has to make decisions for herself. Because she has a life to lead too.

The Book of Broken Hearts made me swoon, it made me cry, and it made me feel so many things relative to my own life right now. I loved the mix of Argentinian and Puerto Rican culture, too. It’s one of those books that I was sad to finish; I noticed myself feeling more and more attached to the story as time passed. This is truly a testament to Ockler’s writing and how much her craft has grown since her earlier books; she’s not relying on a love triangle to create tension but instead has found a natural balance between family, romance, and friendships. I can’t wait to read it again and again.

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March 31, 2015 - 8:00 am

Rather Be Re-Reading | Top 10 Tuesday - […] The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler | Unbreak my Heart by Melissa Walker | Don’t Let Me Go by J.H. Trumble […]

June 12, 2014 - 9:00 am

#scandal by Sarah Ockler (YA Review) - […] I even opened #scandal, my expectations were high because The Book of Broken Hearts is on my ultimate fav books list. Could Ockler do it again? I was hoping […]

February 11, 2014 - 9:49 am

Top 10 Tuesday: Cue the Swoon - […] → The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler […]

December 27, 2013 - 9:01 am

Estelle's End of the Year Survey (So Long 2013), Estelle - […] by Corey Ann Haydu Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham The Reece Malcolm List by Amy Spalding The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler Winger by Andrew […]

May 19, 2013 - 4:05 am

Book Birthdays: May 19th - 25th | Alice Marvels - […] Rather Be Reading “This is truly a testament to Ockler’s writing and how much her craft has grown since her ea… […]

May 14, 2013 - 12:00 am

Top 10 Tuesday: The Hard Stuff (in Books) - […] associated with this subject really rock me to the core. Two recent examples in my reading are The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler and Sean Griswold’s Head by Lindsay Leavitt; they are completely different books filled with […]

May 4, 2013 - 11:38 pm

Hannah @ So Obsessed With - I haven’t read anything by Ockler yet, and I don’t think I’d be dying to grab this one based on the cover. But I love your excitement – and that you read it twice – so I definitely think I’ll be keeping an eye out for it at my library! I’ve been buying way too many books lately, so I can’t follow your “Buy It” instructions but I definitely want to read it now!

May 3, 2013 - 6:02 am

May 2013 Young Adult Book Releases - […] Goodreads | Amazon | Estelle’s Review Description: […]

April 24, 2013 - 9:51 pm

Rachel - I obviously trust your word when it comes to all things contemporary so I am incredibly pleased that you liked this book so much. We all know I adored Bittersweet, so I couldn’t be more excited to read this one. And it has boys. I like boys.

April 24, 2013 - 1:19 pm

Alexa Y. - Your review of this book is SO compelling and SO you in tone. I LOVE IT. I also really, really want to read this book! It sounds phenomenal, and a bit sad, and a bit happy and a bit of everything in between those two things. I love books about families, as you know, so that’s a point of interest. And of course, the romance that should not be BUT can’t be helped is also a drawing point. Can’t wait to check this out!

April 24, 2013 - 6:17 am

Lori - Oh! I loved this one so much! I was really surprised by how layered it was. It had all the elements I love. I was sad to see it end too.

April 23, 2013 - 8:51 pm


April 23, 2013 - 8:38 pm

Maggie @ Young Adult Anonymous - I’m excited for this one but I have to admit, I was really disappointed with the ending of Bittersweet. I was LOVING the book and then … the letdown. I’m hoping this brings me back on board.

April 23, 2013 - 4:25 pm

Quinn @ Quinn's Book Nook - This is the second really positive review I’ve come across today for this book. I have it as an egalley, but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. I’ve never read a book by Ockler (seriously, there must be something wrong with me!) but now I’m really excited to read this one.

Thanks for the review!

April 22, 2013 - 6:52 pm

Dana - Can I be honest and say that I didn’t even read your whole review before I added this to my TBR list? Sounds like something that I would enjoy. Will favorite your post so I can read it again after I read the book for myself. ;-)

April 22, 2013 - 6:03 pm

Renae @ Respiring Thoughts - I’m so glad you loved this, Estelle! After reading Bittersweet by Ockler a few weeks ago and seriously adoring it, I’m really eager to try more of her writing. It’s fantastic to hear that this is just as amazing as Bittersweet was!

April 22, 2013 - 4:14 pm

Annie - I have been anxiously waiting for this to come out so I can read it! It sounds so good, seriously! I can’t believe I still haven’t read a book by Sarah Ockler yet – she sounds exactly like what I look for in an author! So happy you liked this – sure I won’t be disappointed!

April 22, 2013 - 3:54 pm

Cynthia - oooo this sounds amazing!!! I loved Twenty Boy Summer but I haven’t read anything by Ockler since, even though I own Fixing Delilah and Bittersweet. I should really read those since I already have them, but now I want to read this one so bad!!! Ack!! Great review Estelle! =)

April 22, 2013 - 1:39 pm

Natalie - This book sounds really good! I haven’t read anything by Sarah Ockler before, but I really want to! Perhaps on my next book haul I’ll pick up something of hers. I’ve heard really great things about Twenty Boy Summer, so maybe I’ll get that one! Also, I’m excited for this book because I haven’t read one lately that has caused me to have SO MANY FEELS!!! and I think that this book will definitely do that for me :)

April 22, 2013 - 10:36 am

Maggie @ Just a Couple More Pages - I am actually reading Twenty Boy Summer right now, I tried to read it about a year ago and couldn’t get into it, but I am loving it now (I don’t know what was wrong with year-ago me).

Great review, I am really looking forward to reading this. Thanks!

April 22, 2013 - 10:13 am

Kelly - Had I not just read Twenty Boy Summer (and loved it), I would have passed over this book without a second glance. But seeing Sarah’s name on the cover gave me pause, and reading your review makes me want to run out and pick up a copy, like yesterday. I really don’t think I love anything more than a great family dynamic in my contemporaries, so to see that Ockler makes family and bonding and tragedy the core of this is giving my goosebumps – the good kind!

April 22, 2013 - 10:08 am

Ginger @ GReads! - I think you & Anna are trying to kill me with your reviews today, lol. Seriously though, I can NOT wait to read this one! There are so many things you described that really grab me when it comes to what I like to read. I have a feeling I’ll be relating a lot to this one.. particularly with the sick parent, and being the youngest of sisters. I am going to buy this the day it comes out!

April 22, 2013 - 10:02 am

Tara - YES YES YES this is going to be my next read!!

April 22, 2013 - 9:26 am

Bookworm1858 - Looks like another winner from Ockler-so excited to dive into this book. Hey, have you thought about a bookish manicure for this cover?

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Nailed It: May Book Releases Edition

Hola friends!

We were so thrilled by your response to our NAILED IT feature, and here we are again with another post — this time featuring May book releases. This is certainly one of the BEST months in this book year because we are uber excited about so many of the reads that are going to hit bookshelves.

Enjoy + happy painting!!

Magan’s Pick:

Golden by Jessi Kirby. A peek at Magan’s review: “You know that feeling when you love an author and you’re super excited for his/her next release… Then you’re completely blown away because this book … THIS BOOK trumps all the others? And you finish it with a happy, goofy smile on your face, but your heart is heavy because you’re sad it’s over? That’s how I felt after reading Jessi Kirby’s upcoming release, Golden.”

julep nail polish colors paired with golden by jessi kirby

Julep Nail Polish Colors: Stella | Ingrid | Sienna

Find Golden by Jessi Kirby @ Goodreads | Amazon

Estelle’s Pick:

Wild Awake by Hilary T. Smith. You’ll catch Estelle’s review at the end of April, but she’s been calling it one of her favorite reads of the year for a long time now. Here’s a small snippet from her review: “In her debut, Hilary T. Smith weaves electrifying visuals with a raw (and fresh) writing style, as our main character discovers that life as she knows it is a complete mystery.”Nailed It Wild Awake by Hilary T Smith May Book Release

Julep Nail Polish Colors: Bethany | Daisy | Anne

Find Wild Awake by Hilary T. Smith @ Goodreads | Amazon

Speaking of May, Julep just sent out the month’s colors for the Maven members. They are having a roaring 20s theme, which is oh-so much fun! Take a look!

What May book releases are you most looking forward to? Any favorite colors in these palettes?

May 13, 2013 - 12:58 am

Blog Tour Kick Off for GOLDEN by Jessi Kirby - […] GOLDEN to your to-read list on Goodreads Pre-order GOLDEN on Amazon Read my rave review + check out our nail polish picks for GOLDEN Check out Mundie Moms for more GOLDEN blog tour […]

April 23, 2013 - 10:28 pm

Maggie, Young Adult Anonymous - I love this feature, ladies. Your color picks are always spot on. Do I need to become a Julep Maven? I think I need to become a Julep Maven.

April 21, 2013 - 10:48 pm

Alexa Y. - The Sienna and Ingrid colors are so, so beautiful. And I loved Golden very, very much indeed! I also cannot wait to read Wild Awake!

April 21, 2013 - 10:24 pm

Jess, Books and Sensibility - This is a great feature. I’ve never tried Julep but I like their packaging ! I like Anne.

April 21, 2013 - 9:05 pm

Aneeqah @ My Not So Real Life - Such gorgeous picks, ladies! I’m excited for both books, and I love the nail polish colors that you chose to go along with them. They’re so fun and bright, and match perfectly with the book. <3

April 21, 2013 - 9:01 pm

Sophia - Okay, yeah, this feature? SUPER CUTE. I love it. What a fun idea! *looks at my chipped nails* It looks like I need to repaint my nails soon. I’ll definitely have to take up some of these suggestions to match my favorite books!

April 21, 2013 - 6:54 pm

Kelly - These picks are absolutely perfect! This really just makes me want to rush out and get my nails done! Haha

April 21, 2013 - 12:55 pm

Bonnie - Fantastic picks for both books! Especially love ‘Sienna’ for Golden…gorgeous! Golden was an amazing read. I’m definitely going to have to check out her other novels. :)
Bonnie @ Sweet Tidbits

April 21, 2013 - 12:22 pm

Annie - All the colors for May are gorgeous! I’ve heard great things about Golden, and the colors you picked are so pretty! Can’t wait to get my hands on both the books and the polishes!

April 21, 2013 - 10:20 am

Candice @ The Grown-Up YA - Love both of those color palettes! Very fun and pretty; also can’t wait to read both of these books! I saw the May Julep boxes. Definitely love the 20s themed colors!

April 21, 2013 - 10:01 am

Bookworm1858 - Great picks for May-I want to read both of those books and love the inspiration for matching nails.

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