Take the Fall by Emily Hainsworth

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Title & Author: Take the Fall by Emily Hainsworth

Publisher/Year: Balzer + Bray/February 16,2016

Source: Around the World ARC Tours

Format: ARC Paperback

Other Books by Author: Through to You

My Rating:4hearts

What This Book Is About

WHO KILLED GRETCHEN MEYER?

Fear grips the residents of Hidden Falls the night Sonia Feldman and her best friend, Gretchen Meyer, are attacked in the woods. Sonia was lucky to escape with her life, but Gretchen’s body is discovered at the bottom of a waterfall. Beautiful, popular, and seemingly untouchable, Gretchen can’t be gone. Even as Sonia struggles with guilt and confusion over having survived, the whole town is looking to her for information…could she have seen something that will lead the police to the killer?

At the top of the list of suspects is Gretchen’s ex-boyfriend—and Sonia’s longtime enemy—Marcus Perez. So when Marcus comes to Sonia for help clearing his name, she agrees, hoping to find evidence the police need to prove he’s the killer. But as Gretchen’s many secrets emerge and the suspects add up, Sonia feels less sure of Marcus’s involvement, and more afraid for herself. Could Marcus, the artist, the screwup, the boy she might be falling for have attacked her? Killed her best friend? And if it wasn’t him in the woods that night…who could it have been?

(Summary from Goodreads)

My Thoughts on This Book

Lately I have been devouring creepy, thrilling books even though it has been the happy holiday season. Take the Fall had been on my radar so I was excited to be able to read and review it early. It definitely met what I had been expecting and I cannot wait to read Emily Hainsworth’s other YA novel now.

Take the Fall was definitely one of the best young adult mystery/thrillers I have ever read. I did not know who the killer was until I was reading it for myself at the end of the book. My shock level was easily a 9/10 as I had never seen that coming. Throughout the whole book I was constantly guessing and wondering who the killer could have been. It took me a total of 2 days to finish because I couldn’t put it down (aside from sleeping and going to work).

I thought the characters in this book were perfect. Sonia was the perfect grieving best friend who had all the right intentions of searching for her best friends killer as well as her attacker. Gretchen, while never alive in the book, was portrayed excellently through flashbacks and descriptions from her friends and enemies alike. Gretchen’s ex boyfriend Marcus fit the “bad boy” role quite well, but I found myself almost immediately siding with him and believing his innocence. Overall all the characters were great and there wasn’t one who I really didn’t like or couldn’t stand.

I did feel as though the beginning of the book was fast with Sonia’s attack, Gretchen’s murder and all the drama that followed. Towards the middle while Sonia was working with Marcus to clear his name and find the real attacker, I felt like the book kind of slowed down and not much was happening. Had the book been fast paced and had a few more unexpected twists I definitely would have rated this a 5. The ending though was so incredibly done and so unexpected that you need to read Take the Fall when it hits the shelves in February.

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Harmony House by Nic Sheff

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Title & Author: Harmony House by Nic Sheff

Publisher/Year: HarperTeen/ March 22, 2016

Genre: YA Mystery, YA Thriller

Format: ARC Paperback

Source: Around the World ARC Tours

Other Books by Author: Goodreads 

My Rating: 4hearts

What This Book Is About

Jen Noonan’s father thinks a move to Harmony House is the key to salvation, but to everyone who has lived there before, it is a portal to pure horror.

After Jen’s alcoholic mother’s death, her father cracked. He dragged Jen to this dilapidated old manor on the shore of New Jersey to “start their new lives”—but Harmony House is more than just a creepy old estate. It’s got a chilling past—and the more Jen discovers its secrets, the more the house awakens. Strange visions follow Jen wherever she goes, and her father’s already-fragile sanity disintegrates before her eyes. As the forces in the house join together to terrorize Jen, she must find a way to escape the past she didn’t know was haunting her—and the mysterious and terrible power she didn’t realize she had.

A classic horror story finds a terrifying home in Harmony House, drawing on favorite tropes and edgy, modern characters to create a chilling tale of blame, guilt, and ghostly revenge.

(Summary from Goodreads)

My Thoughts on This Book

I absolutely love young adult thrillers and even though we’re in a happy holiday season at the moment, I jumped at the chance to read Harmony House. I was even more excited to read it because it takes place in New Jersey where I am from and currently live. The summary just sucked me in and I knew the ending was going to be something I hadn’t been expecting.

In my opinion there was different twists in the plot that I hadn’t been expecting and hadn’t seen coming. I was turning page after page to find out what was going on and what would happen next. It took me 2 days to finish reading Harmony House, and I enjoyed every minute of reading it. I’m not quite sure why it was a lower rating on Goodreads (currently 2.96) because I thought the plot line was original and was actually thrilling.

The characters were amazing. I was of course rooting for the main character Jen the whole time. She was not only easily likable but easily relatable. It was easy to see where her thoughts and feelings came from and I often noticed I felt the same feelings she was throughout the book. Jen’s dad was quite a character as well. Without giving too much away, it was so easy to not like him from the beginning. There were a few other characters that made small appearances throughout the book who really added to the storyline.

The way the author brought the story all together at the ending was something I didn’t see coming and it surprised me. I thought it was a great way to end the story and to explain everything that had been going on. The descriptions of all the scenery and the house itself was described in good detail to create the perfect mental images I needed in my head as I read the book.

I would definitely recommend reading Harmony House in March when it is published especially if you enjoy a good thriller. I hope Nic Sheff writes other young adult thrillers in the future that are just as amazing as Harmony House.

The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy Blog Tour!

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Title & Author: The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy

Publisher/Year: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers/August 18, 2015

Genres: YA Thriller, YA Mystery, YA Horror

Other Books by Alexandra Sirowy: Debut novel!

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Romance, friendship, and dark, bone-chilling fear fill the pages of a summertime thriller in the spirit of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar ChildrenTwelve years ago Stella and Jeanie vanished while picking strawberries. Stella returned minutes later, with no memory of what happened. Jeanie was never seen or heard from again.
 
Now Stella is seventeen, and she’s over it. She’s the lucky one who survived, and sure, the case is still cloaked in mystery—and it’s her small town’s ugly legacy—but Stella is focused on the coming summer. She’s got a great best friend, a hookup with an irresistibly crooked smile, and two months of beach days stretching out before her. Then along comes a corpse, a little girl who washes up in an ancient cemetery after a mudslide, and who has red hair just like Jeanie did. Suddenly memories of that haunting day begin to return, and when Stella discovers that other red-headed girls have gone missing as well, she begins to suspect that something sinister is at work. And before the summer ends, Stella will learn the hard way that if you hunt for monsters, you will find them.
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About the Author
Alexandra lives in a small town in Northern California. Although it’s fringed by forests and foothills like the town of Savage in THE CREEPING, it doesn’t have as many secrets (she thinks) or as dark of a history (fingers crossed). In addition to writing fiction, she loves traveling (Istanbul is her favorite), trees, lighthouses, seven layer cakes (who doesn’t?), running at dusk, music (the kind that makes your chest swell), and risky adventures. THE CREEPING is her debut novel. To learn more, visit her at alexandrasirowy.com and follow @AlexandraSirowy.
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Where to Buy
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My Thoughts on This Book
I just received my ARC in the mail of The Creeping yesterday and immediately began reading. The Creeping has been on my radar for months ever since I first saw on it on Goodreads. I love young adult thrillers/mysteries/horror novels and this seemed to fall into all of those categories. I immediately began reading this book when it came in yesterday. So far I’m sucked in and love it. It’s everything I had been expecting and more. I will post a full review on the book when I finish reading it which will hopefully be tomorrow or on Tuesday so be on the lookout for that.
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Cover Reveal: The Foxglove Killings by Tara Kelly

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The Foxglove Killings-500x750Title: The Foxglove Killings

Author: Tara Kelly

Publisher: Entangled Teen

Release Date: 09/01/2015

Genres: Young Adult, YA Mystery

Anticipation of Reading: Highly Anticipating!

Summary from Goodreads:

Gramps always said that when the crickets were quiet, something bad was coming. And the crickets have been as silent as the dead. It started with the murdered deer in the playground with the unmistakable purple of a foxglove in its mouth. But in the dying boondock town of Emerald Cove, life goes on.

I work at Gramps’s diner, and the cakes―the entitled rich kids who vacation here―make our lives hell. My best friend, Alex Pace, is the one person who gets me. Only Alex has changed. He’s almost like a stranger now. I can’t figure it out…or why I’m having distinctly more-than-friend feelings for him. Ones I shouldn’t be having.

Then one of the cakes disappears.

When she turns up murdered, a foxglove in her mouth, a rumor goes around that Alex was the last person seen with her—and everyone but me believes it. Well, everyone except my worst enemy, Jenika Shaw. When Alex goes missing, it’s up to us to prove his innocence and uncover the true killer. But the truth will shatter everything I’ve ever known about myself — and Alex.

Pre-Order Links:
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About the Author
tara kelly
Tara Kelly adores variety in her life. She’s an author, one-girl-band, graphic designer, editor, and photographer. She lives in Sin City with her beloved guitars, sound design master husband, and a fluffy cat named Maestro.
Author Links:
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Cover Reveal Organized by:
YA Bounk Tour Button

Cruel Summer by James Dawson

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Title & Author: Cruel Summer by James Dawson

Publisher/Year: Indigo/2013

Genres: YA Thriller, YA Mystery

Format: Paperback (U.K. version)

Source: Book Depository

Other Books By Author: Say Her Name, Hollow Pike, Under My Skin, All of the Above,   Love Hurts

Rating: 5hearts

What This Book Is About

A year after Janey’s suicide, her friends reunite at a remote Spanish villa, desperate to put the past behind them. However, an unwelcome guest arrives claiming to have evidence that Jane was murdered. When she is found floating in the pool, it becomes clear one of them is a killer. Only one thing is for certain, surviving this holiday is going to be murder…

A compelling and psychological thriller – with a dash of romance.

(Summary from Goodreads)

My Thoughts on This Book

Cruel Summer has been on my TBR list for about a year now and just a couple of weeks ago I finally got the chance to read it. It proved to be even more of a page turner and was packed with more mystery and thrills than I had been expecting. I loved the alternating points of view between two of the main characters, Ryan and Alisha. It gave two sides/views of what was going on as the two had different ideas about what happened to Janey.

I really liked all of the characters and the end left me in complete and total shock. I constantly changed my mind as to who I thought killed Janey and in the end while I was completely surprised, there was a part of me that was still shocked. I was also taken off guard by who the killer was. In my opinion is was the least likely character but once the reader learns why they are seeking revenge it becomes perfectly clear and all makes sense (the motive). Each character has a different personality but together they all seemed like a fun group of friends.

Cruel Summer was a page turner that I had to keep reading to find out what was going to happen to them next. The ending wasn’t the one I was hoping for because let’s be honest we all want a happy ending, but it was perfect for the book. Cruel Summer paired with Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas would be one hell of a pair for you to bring along on your summer vacation. Both had similarities to me but different stories and I loved them both. If you have read either Cruel Summer or Dangerous Girls I’d recommend reading the other because they are like two peas in a pod. You can’t like one and not the other. I cannot wait to read James Dawson’s other YA book I have, Say Her Name. Once I do I will post a review for that as well.

Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas

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19732381Title & Author: Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas

Publisher/Year: Simon & Schuster Childrens Books/2014

Genres: YA Mystery, YA Thriller, YA Romance, YA Contemporary

Format: Paperback (U.K. version)

Source: Book Depository

Other Books By Author: Dangerous Girls (My Review)

Rating: 4hearts

What This Book Is About

It all comes down to this. Oliver, Ethan, and I. Three teens venture into an abandoned lake house one night. Hours later, only two emerge from the burning wreckage. Chloe drags one Reznick brother to safety, unconscious and bleeding. The other is left to burn, dead in the fire. But which brother survives? And is his death a tragic accident? Desperate self-defense? Or murder …? Chloe is the only one with the answers. As the fire rages, and police and parents demand the truth, she struggles to piece the story together – a story of jealousy, twisted passion and the darkness that lurks behind even the most beautiful faces …

(Summary from Goodreads)

My Thoughts on This Book

Dangerous Girls was one of my favorite books last year and my most popular/viewed review to date on my blog. I was beyond excited to see that Abigail Haas had another young adult book coming out. Because I live in the US the only format available was the Kindle version and I’m not a big fan of electronic readers. I finally received a copy for Christmas and was super excited but unfortunately I had quite a few review copies I had to read before starting any “personal” books. As soon as those review copies were done, Dangerous Boys was the first book I read.

It didn’t even take me 2 days to finish it I was so sucked in. The same page turning thrills and mystery that was present in Dangerous Girls, Abigail Haas brought back in Dangerous Boys. I had no idea what was going to happen next, much less which brother survives. I loved that each chapter switched from different times, Then, Now, and The End just like her previous book. I also loved that the ending had my mouth hanging open with shock.

Without giving too much away, it is safe to say I definitely enjoyed one brother more than the other. They were the one I was rooting for throughout the entire book. The main character Chloe however had her moments where I liked her and many where I wanted to smack some sense into her. She at times could be a, excuse my language, complete bitch, but that definitely brought something more to the storyline and developed her character a lot.

With the amount of anticipation, hopes and expectations I had for Dangerous Boys before I began reading it, I am so happy to say that it definitely delivered. With just two young adult thrillers, Abigail Haas has become one of my favorites when it comes to this genre. I have yet to be disappointed (along with her other books) with her thrillers and am not only hoping but praying and looking forward to another mystery/thriller from her.

If you LOVED Dangerous Girls I would highly recommend you head over to Book Depository (or Amazon if you’re into eBooks) and get yourself a copy. If you have not read Dangerous Girls and you are someone who enjoys YA fiction, then you reallyyyy need to check it out. It was absolutely amazing and completely shocking.

Top Ten Tuesday 12/02/2014

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they come up with a new topic for bloggers to post about and this week’s topic is, Top Ten Books I’m Looking Forward To In 2015. I have  an entire list on Goodreads dedicated to young adult books coming out in 2015. I don’t think this list necessarily has to 2015 debuts, but since I have a lot that I am looking forward to, I am going to pick my top ten from that list.

Top Ten Books I’m Looking Forward To In 2015

*in no particular order*

1.) The Devil You Know by Trish Doller                2.) All We Have Is Now by Lisa Schroeder

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3.) The Rules by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie            4.) The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

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5.) Last Year’s Mistake by Gina Ciocca                         6.) I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

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7.) Scripted by Maya Rock                                                8.) Damage Done by Amanda Panitch

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9.) First There Was Forever by Juliana Romano                         10.) Even When You Lie to Me by Jessica Alcott

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11.) The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West                                    12.) We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach

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13.) The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy                                       14.) The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi

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15.) What You Left Behind by Jessica Verdi                        16.) The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne

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Well I definitely surpassed ten books. There were just too many that I had to include on this list because I couldn’t narrow it down any further. I feel like I also only have a few genres on this list, YA romance, YA contemporary and YA thriller/mystery. I seriously cannot wait for all of these to come out and will probably preorder a few with gift cards I get for Christmas.

This Is How It Ends by Jen Nadol

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Title & Author: This Is How It Ends by Jen Nadol

Publisher/Year: Simon Pulse/2014

Genres: YA Mystery, YA Paranormal, YA Romance

Format: eGalley

Source: Publisher via Edelweiss

Other Books By Author: The Mark, The Vision

Rating: 3hearts

What This Book Is About

If you could see the future, would you want to? After the disturbing visions Riley and his friends see turn out to be more than hallucinations, fate takes a dangerous twist in this dark and suspenseful page-turner.

Riley and his friends are gearing up for their senior year by spending one last night hanging out in the woods, drinking a few beers, and playing Truth or Dare. But what starts out as a good time turns sinister when they find a mysterious pair of binoculars. Those who dare to look through them see strange visions, which they brush off as hallucinations. Why else would Riley see himself in bed with his best friend’s girlfriend—a girl he’s had a secret crush on for years?

In the weeks that follow, the visions begin to come true…including a gruesome murder. One of Riley’s closest friends is now the prime suspect. But who is the murderer? Have Riley and his friends really seen the future through those mysterious binoculars? And what if they are powerless to change the course of events.

(Summary from Goodreads)

My Thoughts on This Book

This review is going to short and simple. One because I was honestly so confused towards the end. Two because I bumped it up 1 heart because I don’t have a 2 heart rating image. I was expecting a lot from This Is How It Ends and was really excited when I was approved to read an ARC. I was left disappointed and confused at the end. Overall, This Is How It Ends really had potential to be much more than it was. I felt like it was rather short, questions were definitely left unanswered, and it was lacking a lot of the thrill I had been expecting when I began reading.

I did for the most part enjoy the characters of This Is How It Ends. Some I obviously was able to tolerate more than others, but while none were exactly horrible, none of the characters really stood out either. They seemed like your typical high school students and there really wasn’t a lot of substance to them. They weren’t obnoxious or make stupid choices so that it was I will give the book a third star for the characters.

The story itself was original and no where near what I had been expecting. I felt like at the end a lot was thrown at the reader and I was left trying to piece everything together and was left thinking well what happened next? I don’t want to turn anyone away from This Is How It Ends if you’re interested in reading it. Give it a chance because just because I didn’t enjoy it doesn’t mean you won’t as well. If you read it or have read it, leave me a comment telling me your thoughts (or link to a review if you have one).

Dead to Me by Mary McCoy

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Title & Author: Dead to Me by Mary McCoy

Publisher/Year: Disney-Hyperion – March 3, 2015

Genres: YA Mystery, YA Thriller, YA Historical Fiction

Format: ARC Paperback

Source: Around the World ARC Tours

Other Books By Author: None; Dead to Me is Mary McCoy’s debut novel

Rating: 5hearts

What This Book Is About

LA Confidential for the YA audience. This alluring noir YA mystery with a Golden Age Hollywood backdrop will keep you guessing until the last page.

“Don’t believe anything they say.”

Those were the last words that Annie spoke to Alice before turning her back on their family and vanishing without a trace. Alice spent four years waiting and wondering when the impossibly glamorous sister she idolized would return to her–and what their Hollywood-insider parents had done to drive her away.

When Annie does turn up, the blond, broken stranger lying in a coma has no answers for her. But Alice isn’t a kid anymore, and this time she won’t let anything stand between her and the truth, no matter how ugly. The search for those who beat Annie and left her for dead leads Alice into a treacherous world of tough-talking private eyes, psychopathic movie stars, and troubled starlets–and onto the trail of a young runaway who is the sole witness to an unspeakable crime. What this girl knows could shut down a criminal syndicate and put Annie’s attacker behind bars–if Alice can find her first. And she isn’t the only one looking

Evoking classic film noir, debut novelist Mary McCoy brings the dangerous glamour of Hollywood’s Golden Age to life, where the most decadent parties can be the deadliest, and no drive into the sunset can erase the crimes of past.

(Summary from Goodreads)

My Thoughts on This Book

I finally have a new book to add to my favorite YA historical fiction list. When I read the summary of Dead to Me I had assumed it was going to take place in present day Los Angeles (didn’t really catch the “Golden Age Hollywood” part until now). I love history and learning about it, so I like reading YA historical fiction novels but can be picky when choosing to read one. I feel like not knowing that Dead to Me would take place in the 1940’s worked out in my favor. I was sucked in from the first chapter and found myself skimming paragraphs because I couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen next (I did make myself slow down and read each paragraph). The story was filled with mysteries and you never knew who was behind everything. In the end just when I thought everything had been solved and over another shocker was thrown into the mix.

The one thing I really liked about the main character Alice is that she is strong, brave and independent. I feel like strong female lead characters are slowly starting to become popular in YA books and I love it! Alice doesn’t seem to be afraid of much even when caught in tough situations. Her love for her sister is so strong even though she hadn’t seen her in four years, and she lets nothing and no one get in the way of that. She is also incredibly smart and has a lot of knowledge on many things most people nowadays don’t give a second thought to. I had fixed feelings throughout the book on many of the other characters, but by the end of the book it was clear if I liked them or not. The author sets each of them up so you never know who was a part of Annie’s crime.

After reading Dead to Me, I think I will definitely be giving more YA historical novels a chance. I usually feel like I won’t be able to relate to them, but one thing I learned about that from Dead to Me is that it doesn’t matter if I can relate to the characters or not because it doesn’t take away from the story. I loved and enjoyed the story in Dead to Me and in the end that is what mattered the most. This is Mary McCoy’s debut novel and she has certainly done an amazing job at her first novel. This book will be released on March 3, 2015. A while from now but absolutely, definitely worth the wait.