Monthly Archives: July 2016

Book Review: Instead of You by Anie Michaels

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Overview:

Title: Instead of You

Author: Anie Michaels

Genre: Contemporary New Adult/ Teacher-Student relationship

Rating: 3.5/5

Overall emotions: Roller coaster



                                                                               

                                                                            Two brothers.


Cory was my best friend, the boy who I’d resolved to spend my entire life with. I’d grown to love him, gotten used to the idea of our life together, even if it wasn’t the all-encompassing, soul-crushing, heart-shattering romance it appeared to be.

Hayes was the boy who seemed entirely out of reach. Untouchable. He stole my first kiss, a secret I’d hidden away in the recesses of my heart, protecting the memory and hoping it would be enough to last me a lifetime. When he became my history teacher, it was impossible to hide from him any longer.

There was no way to anticipate just how important both Wallace brothers would become to me, how deeply they would change my life, or how the loss of one would propel me into the arms of the other.



Review

If you’re looking for a new adult book that is full of mushy goodness but also has a load of family drama, this is the book for you. Makenzie has been destined to marry her best friend, Cory, from the day she was born. Their parents told them it was pretty much written in the stars for the two of them. Kenzie isn’t allowed to date until she’s 16 though, and that’s when things get a bit confusing. What happens when a decision you thought you had to make gets taken from you?

I ordered this on Kindle because it was pretty cheap and the synopsis sounded fantastic, so I went for it. I didn’t have super high standards, just wanted something easy to read. I was oddly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book that I had never heard of. It wasn’t the best piece of literature, but it was enjoyable and I didn’t find that many bad things about it.

If you’ve read this book, you can continue reading but if not, I suggest you stop because this review is going to contain a decent bit of spoilers. This book is kind of hard to describe without spoiling.

I loved how the first few chapters are certain milestones in Cory and Kenzie’s life and then we continue on at a normal pace once Cory turns 18. What I didn’t like (not the authors fault) was how Cory thought he just earned Kenzie when he turned 16, he assumed that she was going to love him as more than a friend because his mom told him they were going to be together forever. I hated that Kenzie tried so hard to make everyone happy, even if she couldn’t be happy herself.

Hayes’s mom goes through a big loss in this novel, not only does she lose her son, but also her husband. I know that she needed to mourn, but I was getting really tired of everyone walking on egg shells around her, letting her sleep in bed all day and wasting away. I hated that Mrs. Wallace made Kenzie feel awful without even meaning too.

Though this book is supposed to be a teacher-student relationship, it didn’t feel like that at all! I think that’s because we really only see Hayes as a family friend most of the time. The first time he kissed her, he wasn’t a teacher. In the end though, I was so happy Kenzie’s mom supported their relationship, whether he was a teacher or not. This book wasn’t really scandalous in that sense. Yes, they fooled around in school (which was really idiotic of Hayes to do, he could have lost everything).

When we flash forward three years after Hayes and his mother leave for Montana, that part was perfect. I think it made the book. Hayes realized that he needed to get his life together and let Kenzie grow into the woman she wanted to be without him as her older boyfriend holding her back. I respected him so much at the end of the book for doing that.

I recommend this book to girls over the age of 18, due to the sexual content. It does get a bit steamy at parts, not 50 Shades, but close enough for a New Adult book. And let me just say, this is not a love triangle, nor a novel about cheating. This is definitely one of those books that sticks with you after you’re finished reading.

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How do you guys like the new review set up? Do you want me to give synopsis and overviews at the beginning or just give my opinion? Do you like summaries? I’m still trying to figure out how I want to do these reviews but I’d love to hear your opinions. I can also go back to doing rubric reviews if you like those better!

 

 

Pokemon Go or Pokemon No?

This week I thought I would take a break from my normal book blog and touch base on a topic that everyone is talking about, Pokémon Go. I have personally found myself distracted from my reading because I’ve been spending my evenings after work searching for Pokémon. I’ve now been playing it for a week and I just can’t get enough of it.

For those of you who live under a rock, or in this case, with your nose stuck in a book, here’s a link to explain what Pokémon Go is. Now that we’re all caught up, let me first explain my relationship with Pokémon. I was about 9 or 10 when I remember Pokémon coming out, I collected the cards (I still have my binder full!) but that’s about it. I thought they were cute and fun to collect. All my friends were collecting them and battling but I never figured out how that worked. I also played some of the video games on N64 and Gameboy Color. I also remember seeing the movies in the theatre and my grandma falling asleep but my eyes never left the screen!

Eventually I grew out of the Pokémon phase, just like my parents told me I would when they complained about buying a pack of cards or a special one I just needed to have. I think they secretly enjoyed the Pokémon fad too though because when Burger King was doing Pokémon kids meals, you bet my mom drove me to get one! Sadly, those were recalled due to a choking hazard, yikes!

Now, here I am, two months shy of my 26th birthday walking around staring at the GPS on my phone until a Pokémon shows up on my radar. So why is everyone complaining about adults (and kids) playing this game? Yes, I get the stops and gyms are in some strange places like cemeteries or churches but those are public places. I personally just pull up to the stop, get my goodies, and drive off. I also don’t ‘catch and drive’. My husband drives and I’m the designated catcher, we’re being safe about it. Kids are running around the neighborhood at night unsupervised and you almost ran over them? That’s not the games fault, maybe you should check out where the parent is.

Pokémon Safety

With great power comes great responsibility…or at least just make sure you’re paying attention to where you’re going and who is around you. There are some punks out there that have been using lures to draw people in and rob them IRL (in real life), and there havepokemon-go-loading-screen.png been some accidents or children getting hit at while playing. Here’s some tips, if you’re in a public place, don’t carry any valuables if possible. I never carry my purse on me while out playing because of the robberies. If you’re playing at night, wear reflective clothing. Always go out with at least one other person, whether you’re a child or adult, male or female. It’s more fun and safe with friends. If you’re driving, have a DPT (designated Pokémon trainer) catching your Pokémon and getting your goodies from the Pokestops. Parents, if you don’t like your child going out and playing this game, go with them! I’ve seen so many families out playing this together!

Pokémon Isn’t Just for Kids

I grew up on Pokémon, I was in elementary school. Now me and my friends are in our mid 20’s and eating this game up. If you asked my opinion (you’re reading my blog, of course you want my opinion), I’d say this game is for the ages of 13 and up, or maybe even 17 and up. I only really say that because I don’t think anyone under that age should even have a cell phone. I didn’t have one until I was 15. You have to be able to travel for this game, so you can’t really send your 10 year old out to play, at least, not where I live. It’s a great game to play as a family on the weekends when you don’t have money to spend or have no idea what to do. If you’re an adult (or anyone) bashing this game, at least try it before you judge. It’s so much fun and gets people active! I’ve talked to my friends more in the last week since we started playing, than I have in awhile.

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Promoting Exercise and Mental Health

I’m not a very social person, I love my friends to death, but I would honestly rather stay in and read because I fear going to bars to socialize. This app is helping people that have social anxiety and depression get out and meet new people. My husband and I keep to ourselves but as soon as we started playing Pokemon Go, we went outside and started talking to our neighbors who were playing this game. We go hang out at stops with lures and talk to other players. Yes, to some it may be strange seeing some people stare out there phones while walking around, but weren’t we all doing that before this game anyway? More people are getting outside an walking more too. I have a Garmin Vivo Fit that tracks my steps and I’m actually back to meeting my daily step goal thanks to this game.

Do you play Pokemon Go? What are your likes and dislikes of the game? I personally wish it were easier to log in and didn’t lag so much. Hoping they can work out the rest of the kinks in this game! I’m also loving all the memes for Pokemon Go. This FB page has my favorite.

TL;DR

Don’t be a jerk and complain about someone else’s hobby. Have fun sitting on your couch all weekend, wasting away while we’re all out having fun and catching these cute little creatures.

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Book Review: Consent by Nancy Ohlin

Another great example of a book that could have been fantastic but fell short. Very short.

The premise of this book sounded fantastic. I love a good forbidden love book. Sadly, this book seemed very illogical. Our two main characters, Beatrice and Dane, are far from well rounded characters. Bea has some secrets, one of them being that she’s always wanted to 51MsVSsZ6BL__SX329_BO1,204,203,200_become a famous pianist, oh and the other one, she has a crush on her high school music teacher. Mr. Dane Rossi pushes Bea to become the person she was always meant to be, but afraid to become fearing that it might upset her dad who became a widow when she was born.

On a trip to New York where Bea wants to attend Julliard, Dane and Bea find the line they’re forbidden to cross.

What happens when laws are secretly broken and then come out to ruin lives?

I would compare this book to Fifty Shades of Grey minus all of the bondage. I say this in the sense that Dane kind of reminds me of Christian Grey, he’s rich, charming and has this power that he holds. A lot of people claim that this book is romanticizing teacher/student relationships but honestly, I found nothing romantic about this book. Bea and Dane just seem like two boring people, I didn’t even find Dane to have any teacher characteristics. Why would Dane like this girl and why would he like her? Yes, they have piano in common but that’s all. Nothing in this book made any sense at all.

I was very disappointed in this book. I’ve read more logical teacher/student relationship books. I wouldn’t recommend this one. The writing needs work and the characters need to be better developed. The most developed character was Bea’s friend Plum and Plum’s dad and they aren’t even main characters.

By the end of this book, I was just sitting there like…

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I’ll give this book two stars only because I feel like the plot could have been really interesting but the author failed to give us enough. The story should have been longer in order to be more complete and less random. I read this book because I’m currently writing a forbidden summer romance for Camp Nano, and I’ll be honest, this book did give me some ideas on what I don’t want my novel to be.