The Homecoming

Title: The Homecoming

Author: Stacie Ramey

Series: Standalone

Publication: November 1st 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

Pages: 288

Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review

Summary from Goodreads:

Forced to return to his estranged family, John discovers how hard it is to truly go home.

It’s been a year since John lost his girlfriend, Leah, to suicide. Living with his uncle keeps his mind from the tragedy and his screwed up family-until he gets into trouble and a judge sends him back home. With a neglectful mother and abusive brother, John’s homecoming is far from happy.

As he tries to navigate and repair the relationships he abandoned years ago, Emily, the girl next door, is the only bright spot. She’s sweet and smart and makes him think his heart may finally be healing. But tragedy isn’t far away, and John must soon face an impossible decision: save his family or save himself.


My Thoughts:

The Homecoming was a detailed adventure through the downward spiral that often follows grief. It illustrates the vivid reality that “no, everything is not okay”, and it does so in a way that makes it impossible to escape from. Death is horrible. Loosing someone you love is horrible. Despite all the well wishes and counseling you might receive, that hole they loved one now lost leaves in your chest is something nearly impossible to plug – so what happens when that hole threatens to consume you? The Homecoming focuses on what happens when that gap in your heart pulls you too far under to breathe, at least until you find something to keep yourself going again.

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One Was Lost

Damaged. Deceptive. Dangerous. Darling. Are they labels or a warning? The answer could cost Sera everything.

Title: One Was Lost

Author: Natalie Richards

Series: Standalone

Publication: October 4th 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

Pages: 320

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Murder, justice, and revenge were so not a part of the plan when Sera set out on her senior camping trip. After all, hiking through the woods is supposed to be safe and uneventful.

Then one morning the group wakes up groggy, confused, and with words scrawled on their wrists: Damaged. Deceptive. Dangerous. Darling. Their supplies? Destroyed. Half their group? Gone. Their chaperone? Unconscious. Worst of all, they find four dolls acting out a murder—dolls dressed just like them.

Suddenly it’s clear; they’re being hunted. And with the only positive word on her wrist, Sera falls under suspicion…

My Thoughts:

Don’t you just love it when a book lives up to its expectations? Yea, me too. One Was Lost is one such book. I was sort of skeptical going into it. I usually have a difficult time with thrillers, especially when the author tries to include mystery and whatnot. Usually the story line gets jumbled. Usually I can see things coming from a mile away. Usually… usually…usually. Then we have One Was Lost.

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Labyrinth Lost

We all get scared and want to turn away, but it isn’t always strength that makes you stay. Strength is also making the decision to change your destiny.

Title: Labyrinth Lost

Author: Zoraida Cordova

Series: Brooklyn Brujas # 1

Publication:  September 6th 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

Pages: 336

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.

Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…


What I Liked:

  • Labyrinth Lost is basically the love child of The Mortal Instruments (which I adore) and Alice In Wonderland.
  • Actual racial representation, which is often lacking in YA literature. (Yes, I just went there. Deal with it)
  • Filled with shenanigans that would make Loki proud.
  • A delicious balancing act of the good and the not so good, leaving you with awesome in the end.

  • SISTERS RULE! Seriously. Siblings are a huge thing in this book and it’s amazing.
  • All of the relationships are complex, realistic, and wonderfully fleshed out – just like the characters.
  • Family is basically the main plot. Just… yeah.

  • Beware of how utterly consuming and addictive this book is. It will take over your life and you will love it.
  • The ending is ridiculous and crazy and it will drive you mad with need for the sequel. It’s painful in the perfect way.

If you noticed, there isn’t a “Things I did not like section”. That is because Labyrinth Lost is one of those books where the amazing outshines the little things that I would normally nitpick. It was fun, entertaining, unique, evocative, and everything that it needed to be. I can honestly tell you that Labyrinth Lost is now officially one of my favorite books about witches (which I usually avoid like the plague, so that’s saying something). I can’t wait to dive head first into the next adventure in Los Lagos.


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You Before Anyone Else

The number of stairs between her floor and mine: 82
The number of jobs I’ve done without her: 9
The number of times I’ve “bumped” into her: 7
The number of times that was accidental: 1

Title: You Before Anyone Else

Author: Julie Cross & Mark Perini

Series: Standalone

Publication: August 2nd 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

Pages: 400

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Model Finley needs someone to help her shed her “good girl” persona, so she’ll try Eddie on for size.

New York City model Finley is fed up with hearing the same feedback at castings: she needs to take some serious action to wipe the “good girl” stamp from her resume if she wants to launch to stardom.

Enter Eddie Wells. He’s shallow, predictable…and just as lost as Finley feels. Deep down, Finley is drawn to Eddie’s bravado, his intensity. Except Eddie is hiding something. A big something. And when it surfaces, both loving and leaving Finley will become so much harder.

Why I Did Not Like It:

  • Cringe worthy characters that made me want to pull my hair out at the roots
  • Ridiculous story line that also put my hair (and my sanity) at risk
  • The whole plot is based on trying to be something you’re not because you think it’s better than who you actually are – and it never really changed (and I’m not okay with that). Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.

  • No chemistry. It was worse than watching the Twilight movies.
  • A plot twist out of freaken nowhere that just threw a wrench in things for no reason other than to make things difficult. Which sucked. And wasn’t okay.

  • Stalkerish tendencies on Eddie’s part. Just, no dude.

The one thing that I actually liked was the cover. Anything beyond that? Nope. Absolutely not.

 

Don’t Get Caught

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“This is what happens when you try to write your name in the wet cement of the universe. It hardens, trapping you in place, then begins downpouring shit on you.”
Title: Don’t Get Caught
Author: Kurt Dinan
Series: Standalone
Publication: April 1st 2016 by Sourcebooks
Pages: 340
Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

10:00 tonight at the water tower. Tell no one. -Chaos Club

When Max receives a mysterious invite from the untraceable, epic prank-pulling Chaos Club, he has to ask: why him? After all, he’s Mr. 2.5 GPA, Mr. No Social Life. He’s Just Max. And his favorite heist movies have taught him this situation calls for Rule #4: Be suspicious. But it’s also his one shot to leave Just Max in the dust…

Yeah, not so much. Max and four fellow students-who also received invites-are standing on the newly defaced water tower when campus security “catches” them. Definitely a setup. And this time, Max has had enough. It’s time for Rule #7: Always get payback.

Let the prank war begin.

My Thoughts:

I have no thoughts… just..whhaaaattttt? Now, don’t take that the wrong way, folks. I’ve hit the point where I’m sitting here trying to sort out the good and the not so good and then the really not so good, and all I can bring myself to think is how immature this book was but how much it made me laugh. I’m having a conundrum here, SOMEONE BRING ME SOME CHOCOLATE.

Wait… now I have thoughts.

This book is immature, silly, and pointless – but it is sure as hell funny and entertaining. Prank war? Count me in. I’m pretty darn good at those myself, especially because I’m the quiet one that always gets away with it… shh… So, anyways,  book review. Don’t Get Caught is sort of like The Breakfast Club.. but not. It’s a prank war after a prank gone bad hits a goody-two-shoes. While it starts out as all fun and games, as things usually do, the plot takes a turn for the dark side and turns into a revenge story that took away from the earlier light-heartedness which turned me onto the book in the first place. Say goodbye to regular teen mischievous deviancy, say hello to the dark side (where we have cookies but also bad plot lines, apparently).

Beyond the shenanigans and overall chaos, I don’t remember much else. Main character is named Max and he’s in a prank club… that’s about it. Also, the book itself was extremely predictable and at times, downright uncomfortable to read. I enjoy pranks, I don’t enjoy crimes or bullying. That crosses the line for me, just as this book did at its halfway point.

A cliche ridden revenge story gone awry, that’s what this is. If you want to try it, fine. Be my guest and I hope it works out for you… as for me? I’ll steer clear and pretend none of that ever happened. Oops?