Someone Like You

by Sarah Dessen

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Enter for a chance to win one (1) set of Sarah Dessen’s books in paperback (ARV: $132.00).

 

It’s been a while since I’ve read any Sarah Dessen so it was like reading Someone Like You for the first time. I’ve always thought her books were good and tackled some big issues at times. She has a new book coming out titled Once and For All. So leading up to the June 6th release date Penguin is having a ReadADessen campaign.

How fun is that? I think this is a great time to reread some of my favorites and read some that I’ve been meaning to read. First up is Someone Like You, this one tackles quite a bit from first loves, unplanned teen pregnancy and some teen rebellion.

 

 

Halley and Scarlett are best friends and inseparable, even if they are polar opposites. Halley is an introvert – shy – good girl that doesn’t break the rules much. Scarlet is an extrovert – talkative  and outgoing. Halley has always been in the shadow of her friend Scarlett and that is OK and part of what works with them. She is the more level-headed thinker of the two. Scarlet lives life to the fullest and sometimes does things first then thinks of what it means after. Scarlet is the first of the 2 to get a boyfriend, we only get to find out about him through flashbacks since in the very beginning we find out her has been killed in a motorcycle accident. Halley rushes home from summer camp and is by her best friends side through it all. This is also the year that she starts to break out of her shell and at times makes some not so Halley decisions.  It is almost like the friends have reversed their roles. Scarlett is thinking things through more now and Halley is living life to the fullest, but through it all they have each other’s back. I think Sarah Dessen handles the teen pregnancy well and doesn’t make it seem like your playing house. I guess if I had any issues I wish she made it seem harder to adjust and not so accepting.  I enjoyed the book and story line, even skipped the season premiere of iZombie because I was hooked reading this one. Overall all the ups and downs these to best friends and their circle of friends had were believable and the story flowed well. Someone Like You or any of Sarah Dessen books make great summer reads and ones both your teen and even you can enjoy!

About the book:  Halley has always followed in the wake of her best friend, Scarlett. But when Scarlett learns that her boyfriend has been killed in a motorcycle accident, and that she’s carrying his baby, she was devastated. For the first time ever, Scarlett really needs Halley. Their friendship may bend under the weight, but it’ll never break–because a true friendship is a promise you keep forever.

A copy of Someone Like You was provided to me for review. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book. I would like to thank Penguin for allowing me to be a part of the Read A Dessen campaign.

Giveaway Legal: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on April 17, 2017 and 12:00 AM on May 29, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about June 1, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law

 

The Whole Thing Together

by Ann Brashares

 

 

The Whole Thing Together was a slower paced book and a lot of character driven plots with in plots blended families stories all put together. At first I was thinking I’m not to sure this book is for me, then the plot twist happened that I never saw coming. While this story has a big cast of characters the two main ones that it is told through are Ray and Sasha. Their lives are intertwined and shared through their 3 sisters. They are the same age and share the same life but only every other week. See Ray’s mom was married to Sasha’s dad they have the 3 sister’s and a beach house and the same job but it alternates throughout the years. They have never meet and are curious about each other. I mean that is understandable and the never meeting and they are old enough to have a job and in their teens just had me shaking my head. I mean even the worse divorces and trying to stay apart as much as possible I think you’d still run into each other but hey New York City is a big big city so maybe not. Ray and Sasha start exchanging emails and getting to know each other. They have chance encounter, a family get together that ends in a heartbreaking tragedy. This is where the characters lives fall apart and I think the author did a great job at portraying their pain and grief in a realistic manner. Truly till that moment in the book I wasn’t that invested and was thinking it was a so-so book. After that moment I got more invested in the characters they seemed to have more depth and I ended up liking the book. I feel there was just so much back story about their lives before that moment that it was just a lot for the reader to keep straight. Now I know why we needed all that and I think the author because with out all of the life stories I think the tragedy wouldn’t have made such a big impact. Overall I really enjoyed it and would recommend it for any YA or adult reader looking for a good character driven novel this summer.

Summer for Sasha and Ray means the sprawling old house on Long Island. Since they were children, they’ve shared almost everything—reading the same books, running down the same sandy footpaths to the beach, eating peaches from the same market, laughing around the same sun-soaked dining table. Even sleeping in the same bed, on the very same worn cotton sheets. But they’ve never met.

Sasha’s dad was once married to Ray’s mom, and together they had three daughters: Emma, the perfectionist; Mattie, the beauty; and Quinn, the favorite. But the marriage crumbled and the bitterness lingered. Now there are two new families—and neither one will give up the beach house that holds the memories, happy and sad, of summers past.

The choices we make come back to haunt us; the effect on our destinies ripples out of our control…or does it? This summer, the lives of Sasha, Ray, and their siblings intersect in ways none of them ever dreamed, in a novel about family relationships, keeping secrets, and most of all, love.

Thank you Penguin Books – Delcorte Press for sending me a copy of The Whole Thing Together. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

That Inevitable Victorian Thing

By E.K. Johnston

Read an Excerpt

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First thing that makes me pick up a book is the cover. I’m a sucker for a good pretty cover, they are like works of art. Pretty ones I love to display around the house. Hey some people buy knick knacks to decorate their house I buy books and have them all over the house. This book is one that will be displayed (and read), I mean look at this pretty cover!

 

 

summary: Set in a near-future world where the British Empire never fell and the United States never rose, That Inevitable Victorian Thing is a novel of love, duty, and the small moments that can change people and the world.

Victoria-Margaret is the crown princess of the empire, a direct descendent of Victoria I, the queen who changed the course of history two centuries earlier. The imperial practice of genetically arranged matchmaking will soon guide Margaret into a politically advantageous marriage like her mother before her, but before she does her duty, she’ll have one summer incognito in a far corner of empire. In Toronto, she meets Helena Marcus, daughter of one of the empire’s greatest placement geneticists, and August Callaghan, the heir apparent to a powerful shipping firm currently besieged by American pirates. In a summer of high-society debutante balls, politically charged tea parties, and romantic country dances, Margaret, Helena, and August discover they share an unusual bond and maybe a one in a million chance to have what they want and to change the world in the process —just like the first Queen Victoria.

Jack and the Geniuses: At the Bottom of the World

series: Jack and the Geniuses

by Bill Nye and Gregory Mone

illustrations Nicholas Iluzada

For more science fun check out Bill Nye’s Printable One Sheet science activities

 

 

Bill Nye the Science Guy – Bill, Bill, Bill, Bill! 🙂 We love our Science Guy so we were excited to see this piece of book mail. I didn’t know he was branching out into chapter books. This book is a work of fiction with some real non fiction thrown in there so your learning little tidbits of science and climate change as well. At The Bottom of the World is book 1 in a new series Jack and the Geniuses and I can’t wait to read the rest and see where all this goes. The story was well developed and taught the reader without being preachy. I think it is great to all ready get kids aware of climate change – what it means and what can be done to slow it down. There are illustrations, it isn’t loaded with them but they are scattered throughout the book.  They just enhance the book and are simpler to illustrations in upper elementary books, the reader will not feel like it is a younger kids book with them included.  The main characters are 3 kids Ava, Matt and Jack along with a wacky fun scientist Dr Hank Witherspoon. In this book they travel all the way to Antarctica for a big science award ceremony, as well as help Dr Witherspoon’s friend who has made a very important discovery. By the time they arrive she is missing and no one seems to know or act like they know where she is. Jack and the gang get to work solving the mystery as well as learning everything they need to know in order to survive in the harsh conditions of the Antarctic. The story was well developed and the characters were well-rounded. I really liked Jack, Ava, Matt and Dr Witherspoon. The book tackles science, experiments, stem and makes the kids just as smart and inventive as the adults. I like that the kids held their own and the girl was a strong STEM minded girl who didn’t back down. Once you are done reading the book you can read more about Science and STEM in the This Is Reality People! where it takes things discussed in the book and give further explanation on how it could be used in the future. Next section is all about Antarctica titled Ten Absolutely Essential Questions About Antarctica. The explanations are good and full of information but in terms they can understand (as well as adults who will learn things as well 🙂 I know I did). The last section was a favorite of my 5th graders and that is the science experiment! Yippee!! I mean really it couldn’t be a Bill Nye book with out a super fun experiment to get the kids even more interested in science fun. This one is a density experiment and uses all stuff you have in your house already. The only thing I didn’t have was food coloring but that was simple and very affordable to buy. This book would also be really great in a classroom or even as an upper grade science read aloud. The book ends with a trip to Hawaii being mentioned. I can’t wait to see what all we learn about in that one and even more excited to see what the experiment might be to go along with what all the book discusses! Bill Nye and Gregory Mone did an amazing job and I’m sold. I will be using this book and items to make a simple science kit as future gift ideas for upcoming birthdays and holidays.

summary: New York Times bestselling authors Bill Nye the Science Guy and Gregory Mone take middle-grade readers on a scientific adventure in the launch of an exciting new chapter book series, Jack and the Geniuses. The perfect combination to engage and entertain readers, the series features real-world science along with action and a mystery that will leave kids guessing until the end, making these books ideal for STEM education.

In the series opener, Jack and the Geniuses: At The Bottom of The World, readers meet Jack and his foster siblings, Ava and Matt, who are orphans. But they’re not your typical kind of orphans—they’re geniuses. Well, Ava and Matt are, which sometimes makes life difficult for twelve-year-old Jack. Ava speaks multiple languages and builds robots for fun, and Matt is into astronomy and a whiz at math. As for Jack, it’s hard to stand out when he’s surrounded by geniuses all the time.

Thank you so much Amulet Books for sending me a copy of Jack and the Geniuses At the Bottom of the World.  I really enjoyed it. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Fruits in Suits and more…

written and illustrated by Jared Chapman

I got sent the cutest, funniest little picture books recently that will not only have your little ones laughing but you also. These might even be a fun way to get your kids to possibly (fingers crossed ) try some new fruits and vegetables. Even if that doesn’t happen I know my 2 were very stuck with the few fruits and veggies they liked when they were younger. These books are cute and sure to become favorites for read aloud.

Fruits in Suits  { Available April 11, 2017 }

These cute little book takes all those yummy fruits to the pool! They need all kinds of suits so they can beat the summer heat doing summer water sports. These fruits are enjoying swimming, sunbathing, surfing and scuba diving. This book as well as Vegetables in Underwear is just full of laugh out loud fun! The illustrations in both are simple and brought bold colors. This book would be perfect for infants through early elementary listeners and beginning readers.

 

 

Have you ever seen a banana in a bikini? Or a tangerine in trunks? What about grapes in goggles? In this uproarious follow-up to Vegetables in Underwear, kids will learn that there are many kinds of suits—including suits for swimming, surfing, sunbathing, and scuba diving. But can you wear a business suit to the beach? Fruits in Suits has the same irreverent silliness as Vegetables in Underwear and shows just how much fun swimsuits can be—and how important it is to hold on to them when you jump into the water!

 

Vegetables in Underwear { board book available April 4, 2017 }

This one would be a perfect potty training book. No it doesn’t talk about potty training but it is all about how important underwear is and I think this might just be a way to get them willing to try it. I really liked this one and think it was funny. Fruits in Suits was a favorite of the 2 but they were both really cute. The bold bright colorful illustrations will appeal to infants as well as toddlers and preschoolers.  While this is already a picture book the board book version of Vegetables in Underwear is coming out in April.

 

 

A bunch of friendly vegetables wear colorful underwear of all varieties—big, small, clean, dirty, serious, and funny—demonstrating for young ones the silliness and necessity of this item of clothing. The unexpectedness of vegetables in their unmentionables is enough to draw giggles, but the pride with which the “big kid” attire is flaunted in front of the baby carrots in diapers will tickle readers of all ages. With rhyming text that begs to be chanted aloud and art that looks good enough to eat, this vibrant story will encourage preschoolers to celebrate having left those diapers behind!

Thank you so much ABRAMS Appleseed for sending me copies of Fruits in Suits and Vegetables in Underwear. We enjoyed them and laughed so hard while reading them. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free books.

Say Hello, Sophie

by Rosemary Wells

Max and Ruby was always read and watched in my house. Both my girls really enjoyed these siblings  and Sophie reminds me so much of those lovable bunnies. Sophie is your typical little toddler she is shy and sometimes has a hard time speaking up and using her words. In Say Hello, Sophie her parents are trying to get her to use her manners while out and about. Simple say Hello, say thank you and such are prompts but Sophie is shy and nervous and while they are on the tip of her tongue they just can’t come out. Many times it is confusing to little ones, we tell them don’t talk to strangers. Then we tell them say thank you to a stranger who is holding a door or wanting to share a sticker with them.  As the story continues Sophie has many opportunities and all but nothing seems to work on getting her to talk. Grandma to the rescue and her little plan is perfect and gets Sophie talking. The first graders that I read this one to really enjoyed it and were cheering Sophie on to talk. They were so proud of her when she finally did talk and used her manners. This also lead to a great discussion about when they were little and shy or fellow classmates that are still a little shy. Rosemary Wells books are just so cute and great for toddlers through early elementary aged listeners and readers.

Check out my review of Use Your Words, Sophie

 

 

Can Sophie say the word Hello?
No! She just can’t say it.
Why?
Because Hello and Thank you and Goodbye get stuck
in Sophie’s mouth and won’t come out.
What can help Sophie say Hello?
As always, Granny has the answer to one of the
universal problems of toddlerhood

 

Thank you Penguin, and Viking Books for Young Readers for sending me Say Hello, Sophie. I know this will get lots of use in the elementary classroom! All thoughts and opinions are my own and were no way influenced by the free book!

There’s Someone Inside Your House

by Stephanie Perkins

Publication Date: September 12, 2017

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I love a good spooky book (and movie) – I mean the creepier the better! There’s Someone Inside Your House sounds like it is going to fit the bill and I can’t wait till September when it comes out! I might have to hide it from my teen reader so I can read it first, since she inherited my love all things spooky. I think what intrigues me most about this one is all the Stephanie Perkins books I’ve read are sweet and full of romance so I can’t wait to see this other side of her. I’ve got September 12th marked on my calendar. I might not wait for my birthday a few weeks later and just grab it then. I can call it a Pre-Birthday gift, right? 🙂

Entertainment Weekly did a really great article about how the cover was created. I love reading and watching videos about how book covers and jackets are made. I love the little glimpses into the publishing world. If your like me and love to read that kinda stuff head on over and read the article.

 

 

 

One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.