Tag: YA

ARC Review: Tessa & Weston: The Best Christmas Ever by Abbie Emmons

Tessa And Weston: The Best Christmas Ever
Series: 100 Days #2
Author:  Abbie Emmons

To Be Published: November 1, 2021
208 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: October  11-22, 2021
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars

Book Description:

It’s Tessa and Weston’s first Christmas together, and Tessa is determined to make it the best holiday ever. But when her estranged mother shows up with a suitcase and plans to stay for two weeks, Tessa’s hopes are shattered.

Bitter from the past and still holding a grudge, Tessa is in no mood to give her mother a second chance. The holiday season may be a time of reconciliation with family, but Tessa believes her mother will never change. Why get close when she’s just going to leave again? Tessa realizes there is only one way to save this Christmas: avoid her mother as much as possible.

With the best intentions in mind, Tessa chooses to not tell her mother about Weston’s disability. But when they meet face-to-face, Tessa is mortified and ashamed by her mother’s insensitive remarks. Weston begins to think he is the real cause of Tessa’s shame. His old demons resurrect to haunt him with doubts: What if, one day, Tessa stops loving him because of his disability?

Determined to prove his love for her, Weston makes it his mission to be the best boyfriend ever and works to reunite Tessa with her mother. Meanwhile, Tessa plots elaborate ways to avoid “mother-daughter time” at all costs. One scheme leads to another, until Tessa finds herself tangled in a web of deceit — and, worst of all, lying to Weston.

When the secrets between them force Tessa and Weston to face their greatest fears, they must confront the inescapable question: Is true love worth the risk of heartbreak? Is it ever too late to forgive and start over?

The Best Christmas Ever is a heartwarming holiday follow-up to 100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons. You’ll love this touching story of forgiveness, family, and first love.

Jessica’s Review:

I don’t tend to read Christmas romances, but when the author gave me an opportunity to read an advanced copy of Tessa and Weston’s continuing story I had to read it: I mean this is Tessa and Weston!!! 

Picking up after 100 Days of Sunlight which I just adored, Tessa and Weston’s first Christmas together is very quickly approaching and then the unexpected arrives in the form of Tessa’s estranged mother.  She also wants to heal wounds and Tessa wants nothing of it. 

T&W (Tessa and Weston) is a short novella sequel that focuses on everything it needs to while giving you all the Christmas feelings that Christmas stories have.  T&W will definitely put you in the Christmas spirit. It deals with family, forgiveness, and the joys and pains of young first love.  After this second novel with Tessa and Weston, I want to read even more of their story and to see them mature and grow into adults with each other.

After two years from the publication of 100 Days of Sunlight, T&W comes as an unexpected, but most welcome surprise filled with lots of sweetness.  This is a clean first love/romance story, with some minor foul language. 

Do yourself a favor and pick this one up on November 1st! I had not even finished my advanced copy and clicked that pre-order button.  As with 100 Days, the cover of T&W has small images that reflect the story you are about to read. I cannot wait to have my copy to put next to 100 Days!

Pick both novels up if you have not read either one and get ready to fall into the Christmas spirit! Get some cookies and hot chocolate to snack on as you read!  And just maybe I will start reading some Christmas romances one day soon…

Tessa and Weston: The Best Christmas Ever is highly recommended! Many thanks to Abbie Emmons for inviting me to be a part of her ARC Team for this upcoming release!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

#Diverseathon2021: Book Review: A Breath Too Late by Rocky Callen

A Breath Too Late
Author: Rocky Callen
Published: April 28, 2020
272 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: October 2-9, 2021
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars

Book Description:

For fans of Girl in Pieces, All the Bright Places, and Girl, Interrupted comes a haunting and breathtaking YA contemporary debut novel that packs a powerful message: hope can be found in the darkness.

Seventeen-year-old Ellie had no hope left. Yet the day after she dies by suicide, she finds herself in the midst of an out-of-body experience. She is a spectator, swaying between past and present, retracing the events that unfolded prior to her death.

But there are gaps in her memory, fractured pieces Ellie is desperate to re-assemble. There’s her mother, a songbird who wanted to break free from her oppressive cage. The boy made of brushstrokes and goofy smiles who brought color into a gray world. Her brooding father, with his sad puppy eyes and clenched fists. Told in epistolary-like style, this deeply moving novel sensitively examines the beautiful and terrible moments that make up a life and the possibilities that live in even the darkest of places.

Jessica’s Review:

A Breath Too Late begins with a trigger warning dealing with physical abuse, suicide, and depression. And it fully deals with these issues. After the trigger warning there is an author’s note and the novel ends with ways to reach out for help. Yes, when you read A Breath Too Late, you are in for a full-on emotional story with Ellie. This novel does not deal with a happy ending, and has a tragic story, but the reader is actually left with hope.

The novel is written in letters from Ellie to her mother, father, a very important boy, life, depression, and more. It is too late for Ellie, but it might not be for potential readers who Callen wrote this novel for: For those who have kept their pain and emotions a secret to all.

As the novel progresses, things become clear to Ellie that she could not see through her painful life. Through death, she did find peace as she saw how the two most important people to her actually felt about her.

This novel will bring so many thoughts and emotions to those who read it. It is a powerful one that I will stick on my shelf next to Just a Normal Tuesday, which also deals with suicide and greatly affected me. At the end of the novel the author gives contact information for those that may need some kind of assistance.

I read this book as a part of #Diverseathon and for October the prompt is a main character who lives/lived with abuse. October’s Host is Yami @ A Bookworm’s Thoughts.  She is hosting at Facebook and Instagram and having a giveaway!

For full details on this year long read-a-thon, please click here.
And don’t forget about the awesome GRAND PRIZE at the end of the year. Click the link here for that information.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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Book Review: Took: A Ghost Story by Mary Downing Hahn

Took: A Ghost Story
Author:
Mary Downing Hahn
Published: September 15, 2015
272 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 5 stars

Book Description:

“Folks say Old Auntie takes a girl and keeps her fifty years—then lets her go and takes another one.”

Thirteen-year-old Daniel Anderson doesn’t believe Brody Mason’s crazy stories about the ghost witch who lives up on Brewster’s Hill with Bloody Bones, her man-eating razorback hog. He figures Brody’s probably just trying to scare him since he’s the new kid . . . a “stuck-up snot” from Connecticut. But Daniel’s seven-year-old sister Erica has become more and more withdrawn, talking to her lookalike doll. When she disappears into the woods one day, he knows something is terribly wrong.

Did the witch strike? Has Erica been “took”?

Kim’s Review:

Another excellent horror story from Hahn! This one was a little more complicated than her others and thankfully didn’t have an obnoxious child that makes you want to just give them up to whatever evil being is around! Creepy dolls, a witch, a man-boar and some twists and turns and you have Took. It’s a simple enough story, but with complicated themes and feelings and that’s what I liked about it. And as usual, I was creeped out through the whole thing. This is another great one for kids who prefer the scarier reads!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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