Friday, April 21, 2017

Book Trailer Friday [@simonteen @suzanne_young]

The Adjustment, the fifth book in The Program series by Suzanne Young was released on Tuesday, the 18th.

The Program Series books:
The Program [review]
The Treatment
The Recovery (#2.5)
The Remedy [review]
The Epidemic [review]
The Adjustment

The Remedy and The Epidemic are prequels to The Program, The Treatment, (The Recovery,) and The Adjustment but can be read after or before them.

How do you go back to a life you can’t remember? Find out in this follow up to the New York Times bestselling The Program and The Treatment.

Tatum Masterson never went through The Program. She never had her memory stripped, never had to fight to remain herself. But when Weston, her longtime boyfriend and love of her life, was taken by handlers, she hoped he’d remember her somehow—that their love would be strong enough.

It wasn’t.

Like all returners, Weston came back a blank canvas. The years he and Tatum spent together were forgotten, as well as the week when he mysteriously disappeared before The Program came for him.

Regardless of his memory loss, Tatum fights to get Weston to remember her. And just as they start to build a new love, they hear about the Adjustment—a new therapy that implants memories from a donor. Despite the risks, Tatum and Weston agree to go through the process. Tatum donates her memories from their time together.

But the problem with memories is that they are all a matter of perspective. So although Weston can now remember dating Tatum, his emotions don’t match the experiences. And this discrepancy is slowly starting to unravel him, worse than anything The Program could have done.

And as the truth of their life together becomes clear, Tatum will have to decide if she loves Weston enough to let him go, or to continue to live the lie they’d build together.

Prepare for your Adjustment.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Duels & Deception ~ Cindy Anstey (earc) review [@CindyAnstey @SwoonReads]

Duels and Deception
Swoon Reads
April 11, 2017
368 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depository/or Amazon

Miss Lydia Whitfield, heiress to the family fortune, has her future entirely planned out. She will run the family estate until she marries the man of her late father's choosing, and then she will spend the rest of her days as a devoted wife. Confident in those arrangements, Lydia has tasked her young law clerk, Mr. Robert Newton, to begin drawing up the marriage contracts. Everything is going according to plan.

Until Lydia—and Robert along with her—is kidnapped. Someone is after her fortune and won't hesitate to destroy her reputation to get it. With Robert's help, Lydia strives to keep her family's good name intact and expose whoever is behind the devious plot. But as their investigation delves deeper and their affections for each other grow, Lydia starts to wonder whether her carefully planned future is in fact what she truly wants…
Duels and Deception is written by Cindy Anstey, author of last year's Love, Lies and Spies. Though the new novel is also a Regency romance, it does not overlap with the characters of Love, Lies and Spies or their lives. While I wouldn't have disliked seeing those characters again, I also liked that this was a wholly separate tale. It allows this to really be about Lydia, her family, Robert, his life and how it all intersects.

There is definitely still that wit, charm and humor that I loved in Anstey's first novel and I couldn't have been happier about that. There were whole passages I highlighted because the interaction between the characters, the way the societal norms were taken and (while still mattering greatly) spun on their heads a bit for humor. These characters absolutely felt the need to abide by what was expected, proper and decent but also managed to be completely not what you would expect from someone being proper decent or as expected.

At times it was a bit difficult to see that bigger picture that everything was a part of; it seemed like vents weren't always part of some larger plot but more just happening. It was all a part of some bigger, overall story, however. I liked that you could get so involved in what was currently happening that you forgot where it played in the grand scheme of things.

I enjoyed that details about Regency life, about what was expected of the different classes and genders, and how things worked were included and a part of the story. It not only lent a more realistic air to things but was great fun (and interesting).

The romance(s) in Duels and Deception are fantastic with the right amounts of chemistry, frustration (in regards to the era and how things must take place but also the different characters' involvements), humor and charm. It all makes for a superb read and I am absolutely, completely, one hundred percect looking forward to Cindy Anstey's next novel, 2018's Suitors and Sabotage.

digital copy received for review, from publisher, via NetGalley

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Xander & the Dream Thief ~ Margaret Dilloway (earc) review [@DisneyHyperion @mdilloway]

Xander and the Dream Thief (Momotaro #2)
Disney Hyperion
April 18, 2017
352 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depository/or Amazon

Xander Miyamoto should be feeling great. It's the beginning of summer vacation, his mother has returned from a long absence, and he has learned that he is a warrior with special powers. Xander never would have guessed that the old Japanese folktale about Momotaro, the hero who sprang from a peach pit, was real, much less part of his own heritage.

But instead of reveling in his recent victory against the oni, monsters bent on creating chaos, Xander is feeling resentful. What took his mother so long to come back? Why does his father insist on ruining the summer with study and training? And why is Xander plagued by nightmares every night? Maybe this whole Momotaro thing is overrated.

Xander's grandmother gives him a special baku charm to use to chase his nightmares away. He just has to be careful not to rely on it too much. If he does, the baku will not only take his dreams, but those of everyone in the house, forever. Without dreams, there is no hope, no motivation, no imagination, no Momotaro. And then it would be far too easy for Ozuno, king of the oni, to wreak havoc. . . .

On his second quest, Xander explores new surreal landscapes, encounters more strange and dangerous creatures, and faces even higher stakes as he learns whether or not he has what it takes to be Momotaro.

Margaret Dilloway's second Middle Grade novel, after last year's Xander and the Lost Island of Monsters is the second book in the Momotaro series. Xander knows about his special powers, about the threat of the oni, and has his mother back.  Add in that it's summer break and everything should be fantastic for the twelve-year-old, right?

Not so much. His mother was gone for most of his life and no one seems angry with her for her absence - no one but Xander. The threat of the oni is ever-present, his father insists on grueling training and, to top it all of, Xander's having nightmares.

When his grandmother gives him a charm to help, it seems like the perfect solution. Until Xander doesn't heed her warnings and things go very, very wrong. Now it's up to him to fix things and save everyone.

I really loved how Xander and the Dream Thief used Japanese folklore and ancient stories to create the magical world and beings that Xander encounters. Though they were from different tales, author Margaret Dilloway worked them all together very well. Each played a part in Xander's tale but also helped connect the elements of his quest and create a full, rich journey.

There are times that wiser characters give Xander bits of sage advice but how he reacts to them really made him feel his age. Yet, if/when those pieces of advice made sense to him or he realized their validity, he was willing to embrace them. His initial reaction paired with the later one made things feel more real. (And his needing to get to a place where he could accept the words and fully grasp them, gave them that much more weight.)

You can read Xander and the Dream Thief without first reading Xander and the Lost Island of Monsters (I did) because there is enough recap of what happened in that book to catch you up and to follow the new story. I would suggest reading the first book, though. You will have a better understanding of the characters, their relationships and what they experienced. Plus, if this book is anything to go by, it will be a fun, enjoyable read.

Xander and the Dream Thief is out today so go get yourself a copy!

thank you to the publisher for my copy to review

Monday, April 17, 2017

Famous In Love [#FamousInLove @FamousInLoveTV]

I missed Friday's book trailer post so here's a trailer(ish) that isn't for a book, but is for a TV show based on one!

Famous In Love will premiere on Freeform on April 18th (that's tomorrow, Tuesday) at 9/8c after Pretty Little Liars -- and all of the episodes will be streaming online after that.

The show's description (via IMDb): 

A college student's big break in a Hollywood blockbuster leaves her navigating through an undeniable chemistry, and uncovering the truth about a missing popstar.

and the Goodreads description for Famous In Love (#1) by Rebecca Serle:

The romantic story of a girl who gets plucked from obscurity to star in the next major feature film franchise based on a book and the ensuing love triangles she gets entangled in on—-and off screen.

Meet Paige Townsen, Rainer Devon, and Jordan Wilder…

When Paige Townsen, a young unknown, gets cast in the movie adaptation of a blockbuster book series, her life changes practically overnight. Within a month, Paige has traded the quiet streets of her hometown for a crowded movie set on the shores of Maui, and is spending quality time with her co-star Rainer Devon, one of People’s Sexiest Men Alive. But when troubled star Jordan Wilder lands the role of the other point in the movie’s famous love triangle, Paige’s crazy new life gets even crazier.

In this coming-of-age romance inspired by the kind of celeb hookups that get clever nicknames and a million page views, Paige must figure out who she is – and who she wants – while the whole world watches.
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