Blog Tour: The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood

 

Square Root Summer Blog Tour Banner

The Square Root of Summer releases today, and I’m geeked to be part of the blog tour. 

The Square Root of Summer focuses mainly on change.  How Gottie changed from one day to the next because of the loss of her grandfather, and how she changed from one summer to the next because of all of the other losses in her life.  The loss of her first love, her best friend, her ability to communicate.  Unfortunately, some of Gottie’s losses are self-inflicted.  Her grief is so intense that she doesn’t know how to deal with it, and it morphs into grief over other losses, so she doesn’t even know what she’s grieving for.  She also has all of this guilt to reconcile herself with, and she understandably has a difficult time processing all of the emotions and changes in her life.

Read more

Mini Review: Up From the Sea by Leza Lowitz

May Contain Spoilers

Up From the Sea is a moving story of a boy who survived the earthquake and tsunami in Japan in 2011. The account of his fear during the quake and flight from the deadly ocean surge is suspenseful and very scary. I can’t imagine experiencing it myself. His worries about the fate of his family is also very emotional. Kai has lost everything, and his helplessness and hopelessness resonate through the author’s use of free verse. How can he go on, knowing that his mother, grandmother, and grandfather have all died? Everything he loved and took for granted is gone. His family, his friends, his school, even his soccer ball – gone.

Read more

Review: Dancing in the Moonlight by RaeAnne Thayne

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

I enjoyed the first book in this series, so I decided to read more.  Dancing in the Moonlight is about Jake Dalton, the doctor (and the least interesting brother for me, at first glance, at least), and Maggie Cruz, a wounded vet returning home after being injured in Afghanistan.  Maggie is angry and wounded, pushing away the help offered to her by her concerned family and caring neighbors.  She is independent and wants to do everything for herself, even when it’s physically painful and not the smartest path to follow.  She’s determined to do everything on her own, but pesky Jake keeps interfering and getting under foot and on her nerves.  Maggie’s rage and her fears for the future are emotionally examined as she struggles to help her mother run their ranch.

Read more

Review: Tempted by a Cowboy by Sarah M Anderson

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

This was an extremely challenging book for me.  I was drawn to the title because the heroine is a horse trainer, and I’ve had previous success with Sarah M Anderson’s books. Once I read “horse trainer” I didn’t read any further.  The plots of category romances can get pretty interchangeable. A prince here, a billionaire there, or a millionaire cowboy; sometimes it seems that the only thing that changes are the locations or the characters names.  Tempted by a Cowboy felt like a completely different read, and there were times I didn’t like it. 

Read more

Interview and Giveaway: All the Rage by Courtney Summers

Courtney Summers dropped by the virtual offices for a chat, and she brought along a copy of her latest, All the Rage, for you to win!

What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

It’s rare I leave home without my iPod Shuffle, when I think about it. I like having the option of listening to music close by.

If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

Do fictional characters count? I’m going to pick a fictional character. I think it would neat to be Chell, from the Portal video games, testing with GLaDOS all day. Provided it didn’t kill me.

Read more

Review: Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

Written in the Stars is an emotionally compelling story, and man, did it make me angry!  To think that there are still cultures that value the lives and dreams of girls so little that they would sell them into marriage when they are still basically children makes me so frustrated for the future of all of us.  The protagonist Naila is a hard-working honor student with one goal in life – going to med school and becoming a doctor.  When she lies to her parents and sneaks off to prom, she’s punished in the most demeaning way.  She’s taken to Pakistan, lied to by her parents, and married off against her will.  Good-bye, intelligent, science-minded young woman. You are going to be a cloistered housewife for the rest of your life, and all of those endless possibilities that were once open to you?  Gone.  All of those people your medical skills could have saved?  Nope, your parents thought being barefoot and pregnant at seventeen was a more worthy pursuit for your keen mind.  Sigh.

Read more

Review: Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

Lies We Tell Ourselves is a brutally frank look at one of the most racially charged moments in the history of the United States.  Sarah Dunbar is a teenager, and she’s one of the first black students to attend a traditionally white school in the south.  Sarah is a bright girl with a promising academic future – until her parents enroll her Jefferson High School.  She faces opposition every day, and the honor student’s schedule is full of remedial classes, because the school administrators don’t want these new, unwanted students holding back the rest of the class.  The white students don’t want her there, their parents don’t want her there, and even the faculty looks the other way as she is tormented daily. 

Read more