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Frayed by Kara Terzis

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Dear Kesley,

My therapist tells me I should write you a letter. Like flushing all my thoughts and feelings out of my system and onto paper. I tell her it's a stupid idea.

But here I am, writing a letter to a dead girl. Where do I start? Where did our story begin? From the moment you were born...or died?

I'll start with the moment I found out the truth about you. Your lies and my pain. Because it always begins and ends with you.
And that end began when Rafe Lawrence came back to town...

Ava Hale will do anything to find her sister's killer...although she'll wish she hadn't. Because the harder Ava looks, the more secrets she uncovers about Kesley, and the more she begins to think that the girl she called sister was a liar. A sneak. A stranger.

And Kesley's murderer could be much closer than she thought...

A debut novel from Wattpad award-winner Kara Terzis, Frayed is a psychological whodunit that will keep you guessing!

Goodreads Summary

Everyone likes a good psychological mystery. It pulls you in takes your brain, spins it in circles, and confuses you just enough to spit you out at the other end scratching your head yet still clapping at the cleverness. This book is just that, a wild ride that even the Mad Hatter himself would give a standing ovation to. Ava's sister died and she will stop at nothing to find her killer. The issue is, the deeper she dives into information about her sister and what she was up to, the more she realized that she didn't know her at all. It is this journey to information that sends Ava on a wild ride of fact finding that sends her places she thought she would never be, and teaches her things she never thought were possible.

I love books like this. It kind of reminds me of elements of the movie "Inception" where the writer of the story is just trying to confuse you and not give you all the answers. For me that is the part of the book that attracts me most. This story is not predictable, and not like anything you have read lately (or at all for me). Elements that contribute to this are a gang of ill tempered trouble making girls, and a love triangle involving none other than Ava's boyfriend himself. It seems like every time you turn the page, you should be ready for some unexpected twist that will unravel any predictions you could have made about where the story will be going next. What is even better is that the characters in the book evolve with the story so much that you will wonder how they even could have originally behaved as they did. This story is just superb! Definitely a must read.

4.5 Stars

Reviewed by Chris

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Places No One Knows by Brenna Yovanoff

Monday, June 27, 2016

For fans of Lauren Oliver and E. Lockhart, here is a dreamy love story set in the dark halls of contemporary high school, from New York Times bestselling author Brenna Yovanoff.

Waverly Camdenmar spends her nights running until she can’t even think. Then the sun comes up, life goes on, and Waverly goes back to her perfectly hateful best friend, her perfectly dull classes, and the tiny, nagging suspicion that there’s more to life than student council and GPAs.

Marshall Holt is a loser. He drinks on school nights and gets stoned in the park. He is at risk of not graduating, he does not care, he is no one. He is not even close to being in Waverly’s world.

But then one night Waverly falls asleep and dreams herself into Marshall’s bedroom—and when the sun comes up, nothing in her life can ever be the same. In Waverly’s dreams, the rules have changed. But in her days, she’ll have to decide if it’s worth losing everything for a boy who barely exists.

Goodreads Summary

I'm used to reading more horror/intrigue themed books from this author.  This book certainly had the intrigue, but more fantasy than horror.  Waverly appears to have a nice life on the outside, but on the inside she secretly wants to run away from all of it.  One night Waverly projects herself into Marshall's bedroom and that single event changes her life.

Marshall does not have an easy home life and he was a very sympathetic character.  It's hard enough being a teen without extra problems beyond your control.  Waverly's character exemplified a strong female.  I liked when she started to realize that sometimes it's not worth changing yourself to appease others. I liked how Marshall's and Waverly's characters grew together.  The romance aspect was not overdone or "insta-love."  I didn't like how high school students were so stereotyped in the book.  I don't remember high school being like that, but I guess everyone's experience is different.  This book would be a great addition to a young adult/teen reader's bookshelf.

4 Stars

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Unplugged by Donna Freitas: Guest Post and Giveaway!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

The first book in a provocative new series from acclaimed author Donna Freitas—Feed for a new generation.

Humanity is split into the App World and the Real World—an extravagant virtual world for the wealthy and a dying physical world for the poor. Years ago, Skylar Cruz’s family sent her to the App World for a chance at a better life.

Now Skye is a nobody, a virtual sixteen-year-old girl without any glamorous effects or expensive downloads to make her stand out in the App World. Yet none of that matters to Skye. All she wants is a chance to unplug and see her mother and sister again.

But when the borders between worlds suddenly close, Skye loses that chance. Desperate to reach her family, Skye risks everything to get back to the physical world. Once she arrives, however, she discovers a much larger, darker reality than the one she remembers.

In the tradition of M. T. Anderson’s Feed and Scott Westerfeld’sUglies, Unplugged kicks off a thrilling and timely sci-fi series for teens from an award-winning writer.

Donna Freitas is the author of both fiction and nonfiction, and she lectures at universities across the United States on her work about college students, most recently at Colby, Pepperdine, Harvard, and Yale. Over the years, she has written for national newspapers and magazines, including The Wall Street JournalThe New York TimesThe Boston Globe, and The Washington Post, and she’s currently a non-resident research associate at the Center for Religion and Society at Notre Dame. Donna has been a professor at Boston University in the Department of Religion and also at Hofstra University in their Honors College.

In 2008, Donna published Sex and the Soul: Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance and Religion on America’s College Campuses with Oxford University Press, based on her national study about sex on campus. Her latest book is called The Happiness Effect: How Social Media is Driving a Generation to Appear Perfect at Any Cost (Oxford, October 2016), and it is based on her research for a new study about social media and how it is effecting the ways we construct identity and sense of self, how we make meaning in the world, and navigate our relationships during college. In 2014 and 2015, Freitas conducted approximately 200 in-person interviews with college students at thirteen different colleges and universities, and collected nearly1000 online surveys about these subjects. 

Donna is also the author of six novels for children and young adults, including The Survival Kit (FSG, 2011), named an ALA Best Books for Young Adults and the winner of the Bookstar Award in Switzerland, and This Gorgeous Game (FSG, 2010), also named an ALA Best Books for Young Adults, a winner of the CCBC Choice Award, and a Chicago Public Library Best of the Best winner. Her novel, The Possibilities of Sainthood (FSG, 2008), received five starred reviews and many accolades, including: an Indie Next Kids' List Great Read, Society of School Librarians International Book Award Honor Book, VOYA Top Shelf Fiction for Middle School Readers, and the Texas Lone Star Reading List. Donna has also published two middle grade companion novels with Scholastic, Gold Medal Summer (about a gymnast) and Gold Medal Winter (about an ice skater), which just won a CCBC Choice Award. In June, Unplugged the first novel in her sci-fi trilogy about two competing worlds, one real, one virtual, will be out in June from HarperTeen. She lives in Brooklyn.

LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook

Tour Schedule:
Tour Schedule:

Week 2:

1) Ten reasons why readers should grab the book (who better to sell the book than the author?)

#1 Because in the world of my new trilogy, apps can be downloaded to the brain and body! Imagine if that were really possible? It was fun to imagine it for the book. You can change your looks, your personality, your abilities (feel like flying today?), there are kissing apps where you can try out kissing boys, then girls, then boys again, to see what you prefer. All for a price, of course. And the downloads only last a short while.

#2 Technology—what is real, the appeal of the virtual—is on all of our minds, and Unplugged plays around with all the wonderful of technology, but also all the sinister, too.

#3 My protagonist, Skylar Cruz, has an interesting history, a crazy family, and the deep desire to see what it’s like to be real—in a real body, in a real world—for the first time in years. She’s grown up in what is called the App World, where people and kids plug in, some when they are still babies, so they can grow up virtually, and hopefully, live eternally in this virtual sphere. She doesn’t even know the color of her own skin until she wakes up in the Real World for the first time.

#4 Rain Holt, who is a very sexy love interest.

#5 A reminder of all that is sensuous and exciting about being real. And doing things like eating strawberries and swimming in the ocean.

#7 If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to live virtually, all of the time.

#8 Lacy Mills. She’s so fun to hate.

#9. Action. There is lots of action.

#10. Kit. He’s on the agenda for the sequel to Unplugged, which is called The Body Market. He’s a bounty hunter. With tattoos. And he will definitely give Rain a run for his money with Skylar.

3 Finished Copies of UNPLUGGED (US Only)

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This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Of Better Blood by Susan Moger

Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Teenage polio survivor Rowan Collier is caught in the crossfire of a secret war against "the unfit." It's 1922, and eugenics the movement dedicated to racial purity and good breeding has taken hold in America. State laws allow institutions to sterilize minorities, the "feeble-minded," and the poor, while local eugenics councils set up exhibits at county fairs with "fitter family" contests and propaganda. After years of being confined to hospitals, Rowan is recruited at sixteen to play a born cripple in a county fair eugenics exhibit. But gutsy, outspoken Dorchy befriends Rowan and helps her realize her own inner strength and bravery. The two escape the fair and end up at a summer camp on a desolate island run by the New England Eugenics Council. There they discover something is happening to the children. Rowan must find a way to stop the horrors on the island if she can escape them herself."

Goodreads Summary

I love books based in historical fact and Of Better Blood was definitely fascinating.  It was a bit of a surprise to me that a eugenics movement actually existed in America given our denouncement of it when Germany began to follow that thought process.  There was so much fact packed into this book and much of it was horrifying.  Rowan is a young lady born with no discernible physical problems, but who developed them after polio.  Her main source of income is to pretend that she is inept and act out her ineptitude in front of an audience in promotion of eugenics.  Her own sister is a part of the society that makes Rowan perform and calls her a cripple.  

Rowan and Dorchy leave the Betterment society and end up at a Eugenics summer camp where conditions are certainly no better.  The book is rife with sterilizations, horrible names, prejudices, and fear of the different.  The author inserted many surprising names as supporters of eugenics-from US presidents to Edison.  The book was a little slow for me in parts and it was difficult to connect to the main characters although I found them brave and felt bad for them.  This book would be ideal for young adult/teen readers.

4 Stars

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

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This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Flameout by Keri Arthur: Review and Giveaway!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Emberly and her red hot partner, Jackson, have hit an impasse in their battle against the crazed humans infected by a plague-like virus derived from vampire blood. Their quest to unearth the leader of the group leads them into an ambush—and leaves Emberly at odds with her former lover, Sam, who’s pressuring her to join his Paranormal Investigations Team.
To make matters worse, three local witches have been kidnapped—and if their spells fall into the wrong hands, Emberly’s powers could end up smothered. With time ticking until the virus consumes the world, Emberly and Jackson must race to save the witches, find a cure, and smoke out their nemesis—or go down in a blaze of glory.


Keri Arthur is the New York Times bestselling author of the Souls of Fire, Outcast, Dark Angels, and Riley Jenson Guardian series, has written more than thirty books. She’s been nominated in the Best Contemporary Paranormal category of the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Awards and has won a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for urban fantasy. She lives with her daughter in Melbourne, Australia. She can be found online on her website or follow her on Twitter.


I haven't read the first two books in the series, but, for the most part, I didn't need too much background information to immerse myself in this book.  Emberly and Jackson must save kidnapped witches before the loss of these witches begins to affect Emberly's powers.  Emberly and Jackson go on a merry chase trying to track the witches down and encounter many obstacles along the way.  Her ex-love, Sam, is trying to convince her to help him with his own investigations and-who knows-maybe end up back together (I got some of those vibes).  I much prefer Emberly with Jackson though-despite the fact that the pair are definitely in a relationship slump.  

I wasn't too fond of the lack of attraction (at least to me) between Emberly and Jackson.  I guess it could be an ironic realty that tends to happen for some period of time with any real-life couple.  Emberly is still a strong female character.  Sometimes she made decisions that I found too-stupid-to-live, but I suppose it made the plot that much more exciting.  Sam's character annoyed me.  He's very self-entitled and thinks a lot of himself.  I enjoyed the author's attention to detail and world-building.  I found it easy to picture the vivid scenes.  This book would be a great read for a fan of the author or paranormal/romance books.

 3 1/2 Stars


Please leave a comment with your name and email (USA) for a chance to win a copy of the above book!

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Ninth City Burning by J. Patrick Black: Promo and Excerpt!

The Valentine War, Earth 500 Years Ago
It starts with the world how it used to be, with countries and billions of people living everywhere. Back then there was no such thing as thelemity, and people built houses and machines sort of like they have in settlements today, but all of that changed when the Valentines came.

The reason we call them the Valentines is that the day they first attacked, February 14 on the old Western Calendar, was called “Valentine’s Day”. We still don’t know what the Valentines call themselves, because we’ve never been able to talk to them. We don’t even know what they look like. People had all sorts of different names for them early in the war, but “Valentine” is the one that ended up being the most popular. It used to mean something totally different, but not many people remember that now.

We never saw them coming. All at once cities just started disappearing. A city would be there, everything totally normal, and then it would be gone, nothing but rubble and a cloud of dust. By the time we figured out we were under attack, half the cities in the world had already been destroyed. We tried to fight back, but the Valentines had thelemity, and our strongest weapons were next to useless. They probably would have killed every single person on the planet, except for one thing: It turned out we could use thelemity too.

Cover Copy
Centuries of war with aliens threaten the future of human civilization on earth in this gripping, epic science fiction debut...

We never saw them coming. 

Entire cities disappeared in the blink of an eye, leaving nothing but dust and rubble. When an alien race came to make Earth theirs, they brought with them a weapon we had no way to fight, a universe-altering force known as thelemity. It seemed nothing could stop it—until we discovered we could wield the power too.

Five hundred years later, the Earth is locked in a grinding war of attrition. The talented few capable of bending thelemity to their will are trained in elite military academies, destined for the front lines. Those who refused to support the war have been exiled to the wilds of a ruined Earth.

But the enemy's tactics are changing, and Earth's defenders are about to discover this centuries-old war has only just begun. As a terrible new onslaught looms, heroes will rise from unlikely quarters, and fight back.

Cast of Characters
JAX: A cadet at the Academy and the youngest fontanus in Ninth City. With the ability to harness thelemity, Jax must stand for all citizens during Valentine attacks and act as the only defense between the city and complete destruction.
NAOMI: The youngest sister in the Ochre family, and a member of the nomadic Walker tribe. Naomi longs to be a scout like her older sister, Rae, but her undiscovered gifts will take her down a different path, far away from the life she knows.
RAE: The beautiful, impulsive leader of the Ochre family and a scout for the Walker tribe. Rae’s penchant for bravery and lack of fear plunge her into a new world, where her strength will be tested in ways she never imagined.
TORRO: A factory worker in Settlement 225, which provides supplies and soldiers to the Legion’s war effort. Torro’s uncomplicated life is suddenly disrupted when he finds himself drafted as cannon fodder and shipped away to the horror of the front lines.
VINNEAS: Procurator of the Academy, responsible for every cadet at the school of Grammar and Rhetoric. Part of being Procurator is being prepared for command in combat, but an unwelcome promotion sends him to active duty sooner than he expects.

IMWAY: The top ranked warrior in the Equites Aspirant, the most elite fighting unit in the Academy. Highly skilled in combat, Imway’s power stems from a suit of armor called ‘equus’ and the ego that comes with it stands the chance of ruining any relationship he has.
KIZABEL: The most sought after Artifex—a creator of artifices—at the Academy. Her most recent project violates many rules, and Kizabel faces expulsion or incarceration if caught. But her project will revolutionize equus design, if she can only get it running.

Together, this unlikely group of allies will face a mysterious enemy and a war that has brought their world to the brink of destruction. 

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Make Your Children World Explorers

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Give your family summer vacation a makeover this year and turn it into a "staycation." Have your kids forget their summer boredom, turn off their screens, and instead circle the globe with Focus on the Family's "World Explorers" summer adventure kit!

Throughout the next two months, travel our colorful, diverse world, visiting 27 different countries on six continents. Part of the fun will be figuring out where the next stop is, using five clues that reveal interesting facts about the next country. Once you've determined where you're going, use the games, activities and faith lessons to give your kids a glimpse into that country's unique culture.

Click here to sign up and receive your free summer adventure kit.

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Don’t Be Bored This Summer!

Now is the time to make sure your kids have the greatest adventure this summer with more than 800 Adventures in Odyssey episodes and non-stop listening fun! Sign up for the Odyssey Adventure Club today for just $9.99 per month at

 This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee

New York City as you’ve never seen it before. A thousand-story tower stretching into the sky. A glittering vision of the future, where anything is possible—if you want it enough.

Welcome to Manhattan, 2118.

A hundred years in the future, New York is a city of innovation and dreams. But people never change: everyone here wants something…and everyone has something to lose.

Leda Cole’s flawless exterior belies a secret addiction—to a drug she never should have tried and a boy she never should have touched.

Eris Dodd-Radson’s beautiful, carefree life falls to pieces when a heartbreaking betrayal tears her family apart.

Rylin Myers’s job on one of the highest floors sweeps her into a world—and a romance—she never imagined…but will her new life cost Rylin her old one?

Watt Bakradi is a tech genius with a secret: he knows everything about everyone. But when he’s hired to spy by an upper-floor girl, he finds himself caught up in a complicated web of lies.

And living above everyone else on the thousandth floor is Avery Fuller, the girl genetically designed to be perfect. The girl who seems to have it all—yet is tormented by the one thing she can never have.

Debut author Katharine McGee has created a breathtakingly original series filled with high-tech luxury and futuristic glamour, where the impossible feels just within reach. But in this world, the higher you go, the farther there is to fall….

Goodreads Summary

I read through other reviews before beginning this book and I have to say, the reviewers claiming this book is reminiscent of Pretty Little Liars or Gossip Girls (both shows, I watched) are telling the truth.  The characters all live in an impressive and technologically advanced high rise.  The higher the floor the more privileged and wealthy the person.  I loved how the author included fantasized pieces of technology that I had never thought of or cared about and fashioned them into the story.  Technology ran rampant in the plot and I loved how the authors applied it.  

The characters were Ok.  They were definitely flawed and it was hard to like any of them, at times.  I think Avery or Eris were my favorites, but I largely didn't like them during the book either. Many characters lacked empathy and it was flinch-worthy to read their thoughts on others.  I was surprised that the vast majority of the characters were unlikable, but it didn't make me not want to finish the story.  I liked the descriptions and how the book altered between each characters' viewpoint.  This book would definitely be a good read for fans of Gossip Girls or Pretty Little Liars or a reader looking for something a bit different and challenging.

4 Stars

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

What Light by Jay Asher

Thursday, June 16, 2016

From Jay Asher, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Thirteen Reasons Why, comes a romance that will break your heart, but soon have you believing again. . . .
Sierra's family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it's a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other. 

Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.

By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb's past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love.

What Light is a love story that's moving and life-affirming and completely unforgettable.

Goodreads Summary

You wouldn't call Sierra an army brat, but she certainly feels like one sometimes when she has to move back and forth every year with her family from Oregon to California. Such is the life of a family with a Christmas tree farm. Grow the trees during the year, and sell them during the Christmas season. When shifting down to California for the Christmas season this year brings Caleb into Sierra's life. He is a flawed character with a few scars in his past that the town knows about, but Sierra sees past all that and quickly falls for Caleb hard.

It is a typical boy meet girl story where Caleb comes to buy a tree from the family and ends up falling for Sierra. This is definitely charming in its own way though. Sierra is such a kind soul that sees past the mistakes that he has made to the person that he is today. He is awkward and has rumors surrounding him, but he has a good heart and is truly trying to be a good person because he wants to. Sierra's parents are also great characters in the book along with her friends from school. In general this is a great warm hearted story that will leave you with good feelings throughout. Caleb and Sierra are a great couple and you will truly enjoy reading as their budding relationship blooms.

3.5 Stars

Reviewed by Chris

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

To Kill A Kettle Witch by Barb Hendee

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

National bestselling author Barb Hendee returns to the world of the Mist-Torn witches, as two sisters who can see the secrets of the past and the mysteries of the future begin a quest to save the family they never knew existed.…

Powerful prince Malcolm is facing ruin in the wake of a curse that has destroyed his harvest. He blames the band nomadic Móndyalítko who summer in the meadow below his castle—and he is determined to root out the people who caused the blight by any means necessary.

When Céline and Amelie Fawe, descended from the Móndyalítko, learn that their mother’s people are under suspicion of sabotage and treason, they set out to use their magical gifts to save their estranged relatives and learn about their own origins.

Now it’s up to the sisters—along with their motley escort, including a prince’s lieutenant, a shape-shifter, and an old woman with a murky past—to discover the source of the curse to restore life to the ravaged land and protect the innocent from unfair vengeance.

Goodreads Summary

As the fourth novel in the "Mist Torn Witches" series this novel picks right up where the third left off. This time the witches are out to lift a curse on a piece of land so that the harvest can become plentiful again, all while finding out more about their family origins. They are asked to help an estranged side of her deceased mother's family and they use their gifts as witches to see what they can do. Will they be stumped, or will they get to the bottom of who is causing the curse so that they can lift it and restore peace and prosperity?

This book is set in a great fantasy world created by the author. It is different enough so that you don't feel like you are reading some other book that has been written already and is exciting and new in its own ways. I love how you are left guessing who was creating the curse along with the witches through most of the story. It kept things exciting and gives you a reason to keep wanting to read from beginning to end. The countless list of quirky characters that the girls encounter in their adventures is also a reason to read this book in itself. Their family can be great. It can also be terrible. At the same time it is also terribly interesting and fun to dive into all the personalities that you will encounter. It's comparable to an extended family reunion. Barb Hendee definitely continues her magical charm in this story, and you don't want to miss it. So do whatever you can to get a copy of this book.

4 Stars

Reviewed by Chris

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

.99 Cent Ebook! Hello! by Liza Wiemer

Tricia: A girl struggling to find her way after her beloved grandma's death. 
Emerson: A guy who lives his life to fulfill promises, real and hypothetical. 
Angie: A girl with secrets she can only express through poetry. 
Brenda: An actress and screenplay writer afraid to confront her past. 
Brian: A potter who sets aside his life for Tricia, to the detriment of both. 
Linked and transformed by one phone call, Hello? weaves together these five Wisconsin teens' stories into a compelling narrative of friendship and family, loss and love, heartbreak and healing, serendipity, and ultimately hope.

Amazon Summary

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ

Autofocus by Lauren Gibaldi: Review and Giveaway!


It’s always been a loaded word for Maude. And when she is given a senior photography assignment—to create a portfolio that shows the meaning of family—she doesn’t quite know where to begin. But she knows one thing: without the story of her birth mother, who died when Maude was born, her project will be incomplete.

So Maude decides to visit her best friend, Treena, at college in Tallahassee, Florida, where Maude’s birth mother once lived. But when Maude arrives, she quickly discovers that Treena has changed. With a new boyfriend and a packed social calendar, Treena doesn’t seem to have time for Maude—or helping Maude in her search.

Enter Bennett, a cute guy who lives in Treena’s dorm. He understands Maude’s need to find her mother. And as Bennett helps Maude in her search, she starts to find that her mother’s past doesn’t have to define her own future.

Lauren Gibaldi has crafted a beautiful and timely coming-of-age story that poses the question: Is who we are determined at birth, or can we change as we grow?

Goodreads Summary

Maude was adopted as a baby and she knows that her birth mother passed away, but she doesn't know much else.  She enlists (or tries to enlist) her best friend in the search about her background.  Unfortunately, friends grow apart and Treena has moved on with her life.  Maude forges ahead on her own and Bennett decides to help Maude along the way.  The growing attraction between Maude and Bennett is sweet, but not the main focus of the novel.  The author handled the little crush/romance very well.  

Maude's character was nice enough.  She was definitely realistic as a teen.  I vacillated between feeling that she was aggravating and feeling sorry for her and hoping she found out more about her mother.  Bennett was very kind to help a stranger.  He reminded me of a gentleman-something that seems rare in many young adult books.  This book would be a great read to take on an airplane or to a beach.

4 Stars

Public librarian and author of THE NIGHT WE SAID YES, MATT'S STORY (a Night We Said Yes novella), andAUTOFOCUS (out 6/14/16), all with HarperTeen / HarperCollins. Fan of dinosaurs and cheesy jokes. And you.

Week 1:

Week 2:

3 Finished Copies of AUTO FOCUS (US Only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews. COPYRIGHT © 2014 LIVE TO READ