My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life Blog Tour: Spotlight and Giveaway

Title: MY ALMOST FLAWLESS TOKYO DREAM LIFE

Author: Rachel Cohn

Pub. Date: December 18, 2018 

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Pages: 384

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooksTBD

“I’m here to take you to live with your father. In Tokyo, Japan! Happy birthday!”

In the Land of the Rising Sun, where high culture meets high kitsch, and fashion and technology are at the forefront of the First World’s future, the foreign-born teen elite attend ICS-the International Collegiate School of Tokyo. Their accents are fluid. Their homes are ridiculously posh. Their sports games often involve a (private) plane trip to another country. They miss school because of jet lag and visa issues. When they get in trouble, they seek diplomatic immunity.

Enter foster-kid-out-of-water Elle Zoellner, who, on her sixteenth birthdaydiscovers that her long-lost father, Kenji Takahari, is actually a Japanesehotel mogul and wants her to come live with him. Um, yes, please! Elle jets offfirst class from Washington D.C. to Tokyo, which seems like a dream come true.Until she meets her enigmatic father, her way-too-fab aunt, and herhyper-critical grandmother, who seems to wish Elle didn’t exist. In an effortto please her new family, Elle falls in with the Ex-Brats, a troupe ofuber-cool international kids who spend money like it’s air. But when she startsto crush on a boy named Ryuu, who’s frozen out by the Brats and despised by hernew family, her already tenuous living situation just might implode.

My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life is about learning what it is to be a family, and finding the inner strength to be yourself, even in the most extreme circumstances.

About Rachel:

Rachel Cohn is the bestselling, award-winning author of many books. She lives in Los Angeles with two very cool cats named McNulty and Bunk.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram

Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive finished copies of MY ALMOST FLAWLESS TOKYO DREAM LIFE, US only.

Rafflecopter Link:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e2389ba2864/?

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

12/3/2018- Novel Novice– Excerpt

12/4/2018- Here’s to Happy Endings– Review

12/5/2018- A Court of Coffee and Books– Excerpt

12/6/2018- BookHounds YA– Review

12/7/2018- A Gingerly Review– Review

Week Two:

12/10/2018- Rhythmicbooktrovert– Review

12/11/2018- Do You Dog-ear?– Review

12/12/2018- A Dream Within A Dream– Excerpt

12/13/2018- Daily Waffle– Excerpt

12/14/2018- The Reading Corner for All– Review

Week Three:

12/17/2018- Lisa Loves Literature– Review

12/18/2018- Eli to the nth– Review

12/19/2018- Dani Reviews Things– Review

12/20/2018- The Pages In-Between– Review

12/21/2018- Sincerely Karen Jo Blog– Review

Week Four:

12/24/2018- Falling For YA– Interview

12/25/2018- Smada’s Book Smack– Review

12/26/2018- All the Ups and Downs– Excerpt

12/27/2018- Confessions of a YA Reader– Review

12/28/2018- Wishful Endings– Excerpt

Week Five:

12/31/2018- Under the Book Cover– Excerpt

Advertisements

Review: Airports, Exes, and Other Things I’m Over

Airports, Exes, and Other Things I'm Over

SIGH. Where do I start with this one? I had hopes it would be an adorable fluffy read but it really was not. It was a badly written, badly developed, and badly executed. 

Short recap: Sari travels to Florida in an attempt to get over her cheating boyfriend. She stays with her Grandma and runs into a cute boy. Can he help her forget her ex?

Well, I think that was what the book was about. I never got behind Sari or her story for a number of reasons: she came across as painfully immature, she was quick to forget that her boyfriend cheated on her because she chose only to remember the good things about him, and she had this weird side story with music that did not fit into the overall story. Those were the high points. I’m sure the character was meant to be more emotionally stable or secure but it was not portrayed that way. The girl was so hung up on her ex that he was all she talked about, besides music. She was even close to going back to him because she chose only to remember the good times! What in the ever loving heck?! The only reason she started to move past him (rather quickly, if you ask me) was because she had INSTALOVE with a new boy. This new boy had the personality of a wet brick so I didn’t care for him at all. 

Why the author chose to center this story around airports was beyond me because that world was not developed. She could have set it at a nasty fast food restaurant and it would have read the same. There was no real reason to make that a main point of the story if it wasn’t going to be truly included. There was no inclusion of typical airport frustrations, no heartfelt hello/goodbye scenes, none of it! 

This did not feel like an actual story, it felt like a very long conversation that someone was trying to tell me but was just bad at relaying a true story arc. I walked away completely disappointed, wishing I had DNFd. Do yourself a favor, walk away from this one. There were a lot of other things that bothered me about this one but you get the point that it just is not good.

Waiting on Wednesday: King of Scars

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait-to-read” selection is:

King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

King of Scars (Nikolai Duology, #1)

From Goodreads:

Nikolai Lantsov has always had a gift for the impossible. No one knows what he endured in his country’s bloody civil war—and he intends to keep it that way. Now, as enemies gather at his weakened borders, the young king must find a way to refill Ravka’s coffers, forge new alliances, and stop a rising threat to the once-great Grisha Army.

Yet with every day a dark magic within him grows stronger, threatening to destroy all he has built. With the help of a young monk and a legendary Grisha Squaller, Nikolai will journey to the places in Ravka where the deepest magic survives to vanquish the terrible legacy inside him. He will risk everything to save his country and himself. But some secrets aren’t meant to stay buried—and some wounds aren’t meant to heal.

Please and thank you – I need this in my life.

sara-signature1

Review: Mammoth

Mammoth

I was super excited to read this one as it centers around paleontology – a topic I haven’t seen come up in YA before. How clever and fun! On top of that, the MC was a girl of larger size so that meant I was even more on board for this novel! How I felt after the story was quite different… what I read did not match my expectation and therefore I walked away disappointed. I’ll explain.

Short recap: Natalie Page has wanted nothing more on this planet than to dig up dinosaur bones. She is one step closer to her dream when she lands a coveted spot in a very prestigious paleontology internship. After arriving in Austin, TX to begin her internship, she quickly discovers that as a plus-size fashion blogger, maybe she didn’t pack the right wardrobe. Vintage dresses and heels are not going to cut it while she is out and about getting dirty. Along the way she catches the eye of a very cute boy named Chase who is also an intern. Can these two uncover something more than dinosaur bones? Natalie also discovers that her hero paleontologist is not the true great guy everyone thinks he is. This jerk ends up stealing the credit for a discover that she made and she isn’t going to give that up without a fight.

WHEW. There we go. There was a lot crammed into this quick read of a book. It was not all bad but there were big parts that made me honest-to-God roll my eyes outloud. They were absurd and offensive at times. I’ll bullet point a few for you:

Fat Shaming

Judging of others

Self Harm

I don’t feel those topics were handled well in this story at all. The fat shaming wasn’t so much from other people around Natalie, it was Natalie fat shaming herself. That’s right! She would eat like a bird in front of people but then sneak back into the cafeteria and grab so much more to eat, then silently beat herself up. How is that ok? Not once did the author take the time to let the character have some kind of self-reflection that said things like that WERE NOT OK. She constantly did this negative behavior and it really bothered me, like a lot bothered me.

Negative things like this continued throughout the story, example: judging of others. When Natalie and Chase discover that they are the two “scholarship” interns, they immediately start hating on the other kids who got in based on the check their parents wrote. I get that happens but it is absolutely no reason to judge someone. It did not stop there. Whenever Natalie met someone new, she instantly sized them up by *guessing their weight and dress size*. Excuse me? Who are you to judge me based on my weight and dress size? You don’t know what I’ve been through to get to this size or what demons are in my closet. That character feature did not need to be included as it did not serve a purpose. 

As for self-harm, buckle your seat belts. Natalie wore a rubber band around her wrist and she would snap it every time she had a negative thought or (apparently) was anxious – which meant most of the time. She was walking around that damn place with welts on her wrists from snapping it so much. Again, I ask, how is that a good thing to portray? WHY is that a good thing to portray? People saw her do it but nobody really stepped in to ask the girl if she was okay. They allowed her to do it until it festered and required medical attention. THAT IS A PROBLEM NOT SOMETHING THAT SHOULD BE INCLUDED TO MOVE THE STORY ALONG. None of these topics were properly addressed and that made me so mad. They are all serious items and not boxes that needed to be checked for the sake of a story. 

This was absolutely not the GIRL POWER! story I was hoping for. Natalie’s character spent a good deal of time making sure she was “presentable” before stepping out of her door every morning. Sorry, but why did she think packing dresses and ridiculous heels would be ok for the type of internship she was attending? It was ludicrous! The character spent far too much time talking about how she would NEVER go into public without her spanx on. Sorry, but what was this story about again? Was it about a girl who was trying to make it one step closer to being a paleontologist or a fashion blogger? There really was no need to make this teen appear to be so vapid and void of common sense. Speaking of her dream of being a paleontologist… the girl was a Junior in HS yet everything she learned about this field was from reading articles online and listening to podcasts. How could she possibly believe her fashion choices and the absurd amount of makeup she packed seem like a logical idea? I’m still shaking my head and rolling my eyes.

While I’m not upset that I completed this story, I am upset by what I read between the covers. If this was the first YA story I read, I would question my choices in books. It would have believed that most teens were devoid of any logical way of thinking. I know that isn’t the case, I KNOW IT ISN’T. YA is better than this and I’m disappointed with what I read. Would I recommend? Not at all. I didn’t like the way topics were brought up and used merely as a way to move the story along, not necessary talking points. It was so obvious how the story would end but I did not like the route it took to get there. If you read this, use caution. If you read and loved it, I wish I could have read with your eyes. It was not what I was hoping for.

Books Left Unread #149

Wallpaper-Books

Books Left Unread

Welcome to my blog post where I talk about the books I have been meaning to read, but just have not yet. You know what I am talking about – the books that have remained unread for various reasons yet when you see them you think, “You know, I really need to read that.” Instead you get distracted by another book, series, or something in your TBR pile. It happens to the best of us. I want to spotlight those books in the hope that I can persuade myself to move them up on my TBR list.

This week’s post is dedicated to:

Please Don’t Tell by Laura Tims

Please Don't Tell

 

This cover is stunning! I am so attracted to it but apparently not enough to read it. Have you read this?

sara-signature1

THE MISTRESS OF DESIRE& THE ORCHID LOVER: THE QUEST Blog Tour: Excerpt and Giveaway

About the Book:

Title: THE MISTRESS OF DESIRE & THE ORCHID LOVER: THE QUEST

Author: J.A. Jackson

Pub. Date: November 3, 2018

Publisher: A Geek, An Angel Publishing

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 179

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon

After a torrid love affair, shady businessman Delmar Devereaux disappeared from Tiara Blake’s life, leaving her to raise their twin sons on her own. So, when he shows up unannounced one day, her first instinct is to kick him to the curb.

But Delmar has discovered a century-old curse placed on the pair by their ancestors—and he needs Tiara’s help to break it. Ending the curse means they will have to learn to trust each other, which won’t be easy when their explosive secrets are revealed. 

Once again torn between lust and duty, can Delmar and Tiara discover the truemeaning of love in order to break the curse before it’s too late? Or will theircomplicated past doom them forever?

Join Delmar and Tiara as they go on a sensually sizzling action-packed quest to discover if it’s true, you only get one love in a lifetime!

Can a quest to break an ancient curse give two former lovers a second chance?

Excerpt:

He grinned, and he peeked back at Fancy and Jackson at the bar. “She is indeed harmless,” he announced, letting his gaze linger on Fancy.

Glenda and Common had a brief exchange. “I’m not concerned about Fancy. I’m worried about why you are here,” she answered.

“I’m… Um… I’m not good at lying,” Common said. “And I was hoping to talk to you about something… Something odd that happened,” he pondered. “Or something that I believe has happened.”

Glenda crossed her arms over her chest. She was growing vexed with Common for taking his own sweet time. “Common are you going to get to the reason of why you are here? Or are you going to continue to talk in riddles?”

About J.A.:

J.A. Jackson,is the pseudonym for an author, who loves to write deliciously sultry, mature/adult, romantic, suspenseful, and entertaining novels with a unique twist. 

Book teasers and excepts can be found on her website:
http://jerreeceannjackson.blogspot.com/
Find her on Twitter: Twitter@Jerreece

J.A.JACKSON is an author who lives in an enchanted little house she calls home in the Northern California foothills. She fell in love with writing as a child.

Website |  Twitter | Facebook |Goodreads | Amazon Author Page

GiveawayDetails:

3 winners will win a signed finished copy of THE MISTRESS OF DESIRE & THE ORCHID LOVER: THE QUEST, US Only.

Rafflecopter link:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e2389ba2859/?

TourSchedule:

Week One:

11/26/2018- A Gingerly Review– Excerpt

11/27/2018- Books,Dreams,Life– Spotlight

11/28/2018- Viviana MacKade– Interview

11/29/2018- dwantstoread– Review

11/30/2018- Simply Daniel Radcliffe– Review

Week Two:

12/3/2018- BookHounds– Interview

12/4/2018- Two Chicks on Books– Excerpt

12/5/2018- Dena Garson-Real… Hot… Romance Interview

12/6/2018- Good Choice Reading– Excerpt

12/7/2018- Jaime’s World– Excerpt                          

Week Three:

12/10/2018- My Books-My World Interview

12/11/2018- MayaTheBookExplorer– Excerpt

12/12/2018- bookriot– Review

12/13/2018- D Books and Reviews– Review

12/14/2018- MythicalBooks– Excerpt

Love A La Mode Blog Tour: Book Review and Giveaway


About the Book:

Title: LOVE A LA MODE 

Author: Stephanie Kate Strohm

Pub. Date: November 27, 2018

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook

Pages: 304

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonAudibleB&NiBooksTBD

Take two American teen chefs, add one heaping cup of Paris, toss in a pinch of romance, and stir. …

Rosie Radeke firmly believes that happiness can be found at the bottom of a mixing bowl. But she never expected that she, a random nobody from EastLiberty, Ohio, would be accepted to celebrity chef Denis Laurent’s school inParis, the most prestigious cooking program for teens in the entire world. Lifein Paris, however, isn’t all cream puffs and crepes. Faced with a challengingcurriculum and a nightmare professor, Rosie begins to doubt her dishes.

Henry Yi grew up in his dad’s restaurant in Chicago, and his lifelong loveaffair with food landed him a coveted spot in Chef Laurent’s school. He quicklyconnects with Rosie, but academic pressure from home and his jealousy overRosie’s growing friendship with gorgeous bad-boy baker Bodie Tal makes Henrylash out and push his dream girl away.

Desperate to prove themselves, Rosie and Henry cook like never before whilesparks fly between them. But as they reach their breaking points, they wonderwhether they have what it takes to become real chefs.

Perfect for lovers of Chopped Teen Tournament and Kids Baking Championship, aswell as anyone who dreams of a romantic trip to France, Love la Mode followsRosie and Henry as they fall in love with food, with Paris, and ultimately,with each other.

Review:

This book was far more adorable than I could have possibly imagine it would be. It was a super quick read but super lovable and feel good.

From the moment Rosie got on the plane and began the journey to fulfilling her dream, I knew this was going to be the book that would put me in a good mood. Rosie’s character was just so… real. She was down to Earth, genuine, believable, and honest. The girl did not ever mess around with games or double talk. She had real emotions about baking, confident in who she wanted to be, and proud of where she came from. How can you not love a character like that? Henry was just as lovable. The boy did have small issues with not asking and assuming the worst, but who doesn’t get that way sometimes when it comes to their first love? The rest of the characters were just as enjoyable. Sure, they were a little rotten and hard to stomach in the beginning, but they were competing at a school so I cut them some slack. They really were not as bad as they were trying to make themselves out to be.

The author did an amazing job of painting me a picture of just how exotic and delicate the foods were. They sounded DELICIOUS and made me so hungry. If that was her intent, then BRAVO. This author did a wonderful job of describing everything about the food – the smells, the tastes, the texture, the colors, all of it. I felt as if I could have reached out and taken a bite, it was that well done. 

The budding romance was hands down one of the most precious I have read in a while. I enjoyed how the competition of the school did not overshadow the love connection and vice versa. It really was the right balance to make this story perfect.

Reading my review back, it sounds like I keep throwing in food references, I swear I’m not! This book really was that good. I encourage everyone to read it, I promise it will put you in one of two moods: happy and/or hungry. Maybe both?

About Stephanie:

Stephanie Kate Strohm is the author of It’s Not Me, It’s You; The Taming of the Drew; Pilgrims Don’t Wear Pink; Confederates Don’t Wear Couture and the upcoming The Date to Save and Prince in Disguise (Fall 2017). She grew up on the Connecticut coast, where a steady diet of Little House on the Prairie turned her into a history nerd at an early age. After graduating with a joint major in theater and history from Middlebury College, she acted her way around the country, performing in more than 25 states.

Although she was born in New York, she currently lives in Chicago, and doesn’t discriminate against any type of pizza. When she’s not writing, she loves baking, walking her dog Lorelei, taking dance cardio classes too seriously, and playing board games with her husband. Photo credit: Melissa Lynn

Website |  Twitter | Facebook | InstagramPinterest |  Goodreads

Giveaway Details:

3 winners will win a signed finished copy of LOVE A LA MODE, US Only.

Rafflecopter link:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e2389ba2856/?

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

11/26/2018- Mary Had a Little Book Blog– Review

11/27/2018- Oh Hey! Books.– Excerpt

11/28/2018- Here’s to Happy Endings– Review

11/29/2018- A Gingerly Review– Review

11/30/2018- Adventures Thru Wonderland– Review

Week Two:

12/3/2018- Novel Novice– Review

12/4/2018- Do You Dog-ear?– Review

12/5/2018- The Hermit Librarian– Review

12/6/2018- A Dream Within A Dream– Excerpt

12/7/2018- YA Book Nerd– Review

Week Three:

12/10/2018- Eli to the nth– Review

12/11/2018- BookHounds YA– Review

12/12/2018- Savings in Seconds– Review

12/13/2018- Clarissa Reads It All– Review

12/14/2018- Kait Plus Books– Review

Week Four:

12/17/2018- Book Dragon Lair– Review

12/18/2018- EatingbetweenthelinesINC– Review

12/19/2018- Smada’s Book Smack– Review

12/20/2018- Lifestyle of Me– Review

12/21/2018- The Heart ofa Book Blogger– Review