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Books I’ve Read: The Virgin Romance Novelist by Meghan Quinn

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Image from Goodreads

Image from Goodreads

Title: The Virgin Romance Novelist
Author: Meghan Quinn
Publisher: Self Published
Publication Date: April 2015
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 4/5

Synopsis from Goodreads

Her bosom heaved at an alarming rate as his rough hand found its way down to her soft, yet wiry briar patch…

Can you say briar patch in a romance novel? What about meat sword? That’s what it is…a meat sword, right, all meaty and sword like, slaying through the inner dungeons of a woman’s dark desires. What about breasts? Do bosoms really heave?

God, I have no idea what happens when private parts touch.

I’m a virgin trying to write a romance novel and can’t seem to write past a sex scene thanks to my lack of experience.

My two best friends encourage me to drop the pen for a while and gain some real life practice through multiple dating facets such as blind dates, online profiles, and random hookups.

But losing my virginity is proving to be tougher than expected…

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This book will make you laugh so hard you will have tears running down your face; your children will be checking on you every five minutes to make sure you are OK because you keep cackling away to yourself while reading ;)

It literally, has to be the funniest thing I have read in ages. Some based purely around being a woman and the observation of the unbelievable torture we have to endure in the name of beauty – brazilian waxing will never be the same again. While other incidents are seriously cringe worthy but hilarious moments – manscaping comes instantly to mind ;)

Rosie is a brilliant character combining the deadly combination of naivety and curiosity. Stuck in a dead-end job writing about cats, (think the movie Cats and Dogs for the cats she encounters) she dreams of writing her own steamy novel but has zero experience on which to base her stories on. You all know the saying – ‘write what you know’ – pushes Rosie to put her curiosity to the test. Her naivety lands her in some seriously absurd situations, I didn’t know whether to cringe, be embarrassed for her or just laugh my head off – so I choose all three most of the time ;)

The romance aspect of the story plays a secondary role to Rosie’s character development and observation of love and life. Although I liked the way the romance played out, I didn’t connect with it fully due to incidents fueled by rejection/anger within the narrative. Vague, I know, but I don’t want to give away spoilers. While I think the person in question is the right choice for Rosie, I was still unhappy about some of the events that took place.

The Virgin Romance Novelist is a perfect pick-me-up book for all women over the age of 20. I say this because over that age you can relate to the life observations better. The Virgin Romance Novelist is guaranteed to beat any reading slump. Get it, Read it, Laugh so hard you cry. One more thing YOU’RE WELCOME ;)

Review: Aimee and the Heartthrob by Ophelia London

Image from Goodreads

Image from Goodreads

Title: Aimee and the Heartthrob
Series: Backstage Pass #1
Author: Ophelia London
Publisher: Entangled Crush
Publication Date: 14 April 2015
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 3/5

Buy Links: Amazon/B&N/Kobo

Synopsis from Goodreads

He never noticed her before, but now she’s all he can see…

Miles Carlisle is every teen girl’s fantasy. His rugged good looks and exotic British accent have helped catapult his boy band, Seconds to Juliet, to super-stardom. But after two disastrous and very public breakups, Miles isn’t interested in dating just any girl; he wants The One. And the only girl he’s interested in is not only his best friend’s little sister―and off-limits―but won’t even give him the time of day…

As a kid, Aimee Bingham had a huge thing for Miles…until he made fun of her for always tagging along. Now that she’s outgrown both him and her pigtails. the prospect of spending two weeks on tour with the childhood crush who broke her heart isn’t exactly enticing. Except now Miles seems interested. Very interested. And no matter how hard Aimee tries to resist him, her crush is definitely making a comeback.

But everyone knows that falling for a heartthrob is a backstage pass to heartbreak…

Aimee and the Heartthrob_Long Excerpts

REVIEW 

Aimee and the Heartthrob mixes up the rockstar/brothers best friend romance. Throw in a manufactured, all be it talented, boy band, reality TV and public image and you have the basis of the story ;)

Both Aimee and Miles have altered drastically since they last saw each other 2 years ago. Aimee has developed into a stunning young woman with a bright and bubbly personality, fiercely loyal and kind. She is an imaginative blogger with previous fan fiction experience, bear this little piece of information in mind for later. I really liked her.

Miles had been badly burned with his previous 2 relationships. In his position it is difficult to trust especially when his most intimate moments could be turned into publicity fodder. His character progression from the start of the book to the end was very well portrayed. Initially I felt he was a product of his own publicity, buying into the whole heartthrob persona. As Miles and Aimee get re-acquainted a different picture of Miles is drawn, allowing the reader to feel more sympathetic to his situation.

The restrictions placed on the members of the band and the control other people have over them was enlightening. The idea that people in powerful positions manipulate situations for their own gain added to the tension within the narrative. Playing on the insecurities of the characters for their own personal gain was an additional eye-opening piece of tension within the narrative.

The story highlighted the dangers of posting things of the internet. No matter how far you bury them they can always come back to bite you in the bottom ;) Fan fiction taken out of context can just be seen as creepy, especially when based on real people.

There are so many books featuring both rockstars and best friends brothers it is a difficult task to bring anything original to the table. Aimee and the Heartthrob is a cute romantic quick read, perfect to while away a sunny afternoon ;)

Tantlising Trailers: Nowhere but Here by Katie McGarry

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Received from InkSlingerPR

Received from InkSlingerPR

Title: Nowhere But Here
Series: Thunder Road #1
Author: Katie McGarry
Publisher: Mira INK/Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: June 2015

Synopsis from Goodreads

Seventeen-year-old Emily likes her life the way it is: doting parents, good friends, good school in a safe neighborhood. Sure, she’s curious about her biological father—the one who chose life in a motorcycle club, the Reign of Terror, over being a parent—but that doesn’t mean she wants to be a part of his world. But when a reluctant visit turns to an extended summer vacation among relatives she never knew she had, one thing becomes clear: nothing is what it seems. Not the club, not her secret-keeping father and not Oz, a guy with suck-me-in blue eyes who can help her understand them both.

Oz wants one thing: to join the Reign of Terror. They’re the good guys. They protect people. They’re…family. And while Emily—the gorgeous and sheltered daughter of the club’s most respected member—is in town, he’s gonna prove it to her. So when her father asks him to keep her safe from a rival club with a score to settle, Oz knows it’s his shot at his dream. What he doesn’t count on is that Emily just might turn that dream upside down.

No one wants them to be together. But sometimes the right person is the one you least expect, and the road you fear the most is the one that leads you home.

About Katie McGarry

Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Katie is the author of full length YA novels, PUSHING THE LIMITS, DARE YOU TO, CRASH INTO YOU, TAKE ME ON,  BREAKING THE RULES, and NOWHERE BUT HERE and the e-novellas, CROSSING THE LINE and RED AT NIGHT. Her debut YA novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS was a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction, a RT Magazine’s 2012 Reviewer’s Choice Awards Nominee for Young Adult Contemporary Novel, a double Rita Finalist, and a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick. DARE YOU TO was also a Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction and won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Award for Young Adult Contemporary fiction in 2013.

Links: Website /Twitter: @katiemcgarry/Facebook/Goodreads/Pinterest/Tumblr/Instagram

Received from InkSlingerPR

Received from InkSlingerPR

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NOWHERE BUT HERE Pre-Order: Amazon/Kobo/BAM/Barnes and Noble/iBooks/IndieBound

Review: The Truth About Jack by Jody Gehrman

Image from Goodreads

Image from Goodreads

Title: The Truth About Jack
Author: Jody Gehrman
Publisher: Entangled Crush
Publication Date: April 2015
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 4/5

Buy Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleKobo Books

Synopsis from Goodreads

Dakota McCloud has just been accepted into a prestigious art school. Soon she’ll leave behind the artists’ colony where she grew up―hippie dad, tofu since birth, yurt―and join her boyfriend and best friend on the East Coast. It was the plan…until Dakota finds out her boyfriend and best friend hooked up behind her back.

Hurt and viciously betrayed, Dakota pours out her heart on a piece of paper, places it in a bottle, and hurls it into the ocean. But it doesn’t quite go where she expects…

Jack Sauvage finds the bottle washed up on the shore and responds to Dakota’s letter. Except what if his straight-laced life doesn’t jive with the free-spirited girl he’s only seen from afar? As Jack creates a persona he believes she’ll love, they slowly fall for each other with each new letter. Now Jack is trying to find a way to make this delicate, on-paper romance happen in real life…without revealing his deception.

Full Tour Schedule HERE

Full Tour Schedule HERE

 REVIEW 

 The Truth About Jack is one of those books that bring on the warm and fuzzies in spades ;)

Initially, it is easy to think of Dakota and Jack as completely opposite due to their upbringing. Jack is from a privileged but over-protective background while Dakota has grown-up free-spirited in the middle of an artist colony (could be translated as hippy colony, lol) However, as the story progresses it soon becomes blatantly apparent that Jack and Dakota are kindred spirits, this knowledge is aided by the dual narrative providing a deeper level of understanding to their characterisations.

The aspect that stands out the most in The Truth About Jack is the beautiful writing style used by Jody Gehrman employs. Full of stunning simile and metaphor bringing the imagery to Technicolor life. The projection of emotions within the narrative ensures the empathetic connection to the characters. The vocabulary is full of wickedly wonderful words aiding the swoon factor.

I couldn’t really understand why Jack found it necessary to create an alias in reply to Dakota’s message in a bottle. We all know that a relationship built on lies will inevitably fail, lies will always be found out in the long run and cause more problems than their initial worth.

I will say the letters written between Jack/Alejandro and Dakota bear their souls within their words; their letters are far more personal and revealing than any conversation with a ‘new’ person would be.

The characters are very introspective often bordering on psychoanalytical, making the characters very self-aware. This also allows the reader to analyse their own situations/feelings/emotions as a byproduct of the narrative. I stand by my often used statement – it is the tragedies we endure in life that shape us the most. Aptly depicted by Dakota and Jack.

If you need a book that is going to make you swoon, give you hope that romance isn’t dead and make you feel a little giddy – you can’t go wrong with The Truth About Jack :)

About the Author

Jody Gehrman is a native of Northern California, where she can be found writing, teaching, reading, or obsessing over her three cats most days. She is also the author of ten novels and numerous award-winning plays. Her Young Adult novels include The Truth About Jack, Audrey’s Guide to Black Magic, Audrey’s Guide to Witchcraft, Babe in Boyland, Confessions of a Triple Shot Betty, and Triple Shot Bettys in Love. Babe in Boyland was optioned by the Disney Channel and won the International Reading Association’s Teen Choice Award. Her adult novels are Bombshell, Notes from the Backseat, Tart, and Summer in the Land of Skin. Her plays have been produced in Ashland, New York, San Francisco, Chicago and L.A. She and her partner David Wolf won the New Generation Playwrights Award for their one-act, Jake Savage, Jungle P.I. She is a professor of English and Communication Studies at Mendocino College.

Author Links: WebsiteGoodreadsTwitterFacebook

Spotlight: Promoting Self Confidence in Teens by Siobhan Curham

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I am delighted to welcome Siobhan Curham to Book Angel Booktopia today. Working with teens you quickly grasp the need to promote their self-esteem as much as possible. Although I am now in my 40’s I can still remember what it was like to be a teenager – it SUCKED! Today, I feel that teens have even more pressure on them from body image to academic performance. The teenage years are a dichotomy (love this word) – individuality versus popularity while trying to achieve a degree of self-awareness. It’s a hard battle trying to find out who YOU are as opposed to how other people see you or want you to be, parents included. So how can we help them, as fellow human beings, become the people they are supposed to be:

Image from True face Revolution Website

Image from True face Revolution Website

Promoting Self Confidence in Teens You Know

True Face – Siobhan Curham 

Recently, I read some statistics that terrified me.

In the UK alone last year, 28,000 young people were hospitalised for self harming.

That’s twenty-eight thousand young people who were so deeply unhappy they felt compelled to hurt themselves so badly they ended up in hospital.

And the number of young people hospitalised for other psychological disorders such as anxiety, depression and eating disorders has doubled in the past four years.

Being a teenager has always been tough – a weird kind of no man’s land between child and adult – but now there’s the added pressure of a media constantly baying for physical perfection and the scrutiny of living a life online.

So, if there are teenagers in your life, as there are in mine, how can we help them negotiate the mine field and make it to adulthood happy and confident?

Listen

Young people have a lot to say and they need and deserve to be heard. Sometimes parents and teachers can adopt a ‘we know best’ attitude that comes across as patronising and causes the young person to switch off and shut down. The statistics above show how desperately some young people need to be heard. Psychological disorders could all be lessened or helped if the young person concerned had a healthy outlet for their feelings, fears and frustrations.

Encourage

Every day, teenagers are bombarded with images of how flawless and ‘perfect’ they’re supposed to look – images that are often impossible to live up to without the aid of an air-brush or a team of stylists. In order to counter the drip-drip effect of this constant erosion on their confidence, we need to encourage the teens in our life to feel good about themselves physically. Instil in them a love of exercise and a healthy attitude to food. Make them feel good about their appearance, whilst also letting them know that appearance is definitely not the be all and end all. And be really careful not to voice any personal insecurities you might have about your own appearance, as this can be highly infectious.

Inspire

Sadly, in school, little if any time is spent asking teenagers about their dreams and aspirations, so much so, that young people can often lose sight of their dreams entirely during their education. Encourage the teens in your life to talk about what they want to do with their lives and inspire them with any relevant tips and advice from your own life experience.

Protect

Whilst encouraging the teens in our lives to live and dream boldly we also need to make sure that we’re there for them in times of trouble – and that they know this too. It’s important that this is done as unobtrusively as possible. They aren’t children any more, but they still need to know that we’re there for them should they ever need us.

Respect

Whatever the teen in your life’s beliefs, passions or dreams (unless of course it’s dangerous to theirs or another’s well-being), it’s vital that you respect their individuality. When I became a purple-haired revolutionary at fifteen my dad made a few wisecracks but, even though my parents didn’t entirely agree with my beliefs, they never ridiculed them and always encouraged me to have them. And now I’m getting great pleasure from passing on this family gift, encouraging my teenage son in his own political beliefs.

True Face is full of exercises designed to help teens and young adults dream boldly and live authentically.

 You can find out more at: www.TrueFaceRevolution.com

Image from True Face Revolution Website

Image from True Face Revolution Website