It Happens All The Time

Author: Amy Hatvany
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: Fiction
Source:  Kristin of Kritters Ramblings

Goodreads:  “Bravely sheds light on sexual assault and consent. In alternating perspectives friends Tyler and Amber recount an alcohol-fueled night that changed the course of their lives.” –Us Weekly

From master storyteller Amy Hatvany—whose writing has been hailed as “gripping and emotionally honest” (Stephanie Evanovich, New York Times betselling author)—comes a provocative and compelling novel about two friends whose lives are changed by a drunken kiss.

I want to rewind the clock, take back the night when the world shattered. I want to erase everything that went wrong.

Amber Bryant and Tyler Hicks have been best friends since they were teenagers—trusting and depending on each other through some of the darkest periods of their young lives. And while Amber has always felt that their relationship is strictly platonic, Tyler has long harbored the secret desire that they might one day become more than friends.

Returning home for the summer after her college graduation, Amber begins spending more time with Tyler than she has in years. Despite the fact that Amber is engaged to her college sweetheart, a flirtation begins to grow between them. One night, fueled by alcohol and concerns about whether she’s getting married too young, Amber kisses Tyler.

What happens next will change them forever.

In alternating points of view, It Happens All the Time examines the complexity of sexual dynamics between men and women and offers an incisive exploration of gender roles, expectations, and the ever-timely issue of consent.

Ope’s Opinion:  Where to start?  The characters are deep, the writing is amazing, the story line hard to deal with, but done exceptionally well and a very believable read. The alternating points of view ( male and female ) really showed how differently we think and perceive the exact same event. 

I have always been a fan of Amy Hatvany and this book just keeps me wanting to following her and read her next book.  Thank you Amy for handling a hard subject with wonderful bluntness.

The ending may not be the normal outcome for these circumstances, but it felt good.

The Unexpected Everything

Author: Morgan Matson
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genre: Contemporary Young Adult
Source:  Purchased

Goodreads:  Andie had it all planned out. When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future. Important internship? Check. Amazing friends? Check. Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks).

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life. Because here’s the thing—if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected. And where’s the fun in that?

Ope’s Opinion:  All the details in the beginning of the book made the story move very slowly.  It began to pick up the pace in the middle of the book.  The ending wrapped everything up. 

This book had a very good story to it, but I felt like it was too long for a young adult reader.  I enjoyed it, but only thought only an avid reader would enjoy it.

I really like Morgan Matson and I would read her again.

Cold Feet

Author: Amy Fitzhenry
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Source:  Kristin of Kritters Ramblings

 

Goodreads:  Pre-wedding jitters turn into serious doubts in this fresh and funny debut about tying the knot and untethering from the past…

Everyone’s expecting her to walk down the aisle.
But something is telling her to run.

Emma Moon’s mother thinks it’s acceptable to miss her only daughter’s wedding rehearsal dinner for a work obligation. Her father left when she was six months old. Emma hasn’t exactly been raised to be a happily-ever-after kind of girl.

So when her anxieties get out of hand, Emma and her best friend, Liv, decide to take a road trip to San Francisco, find her long-lost father, and put her family issues to rest.

But her quest for the truth stirs up events and emotions she didn’t expect. The urge to run away may just be a part of Emma’s genetic makeup, because she’s growing more and more tempted to do just that…

Ope’s Opinion:  This was a light, easy, fast read.  It was a very surface book with a common story – girl is about to get married and wants to find her dad and she has an adventure along the way. The adventure part was a bit long and drawn out.   The out come was unique and the ending was satisfying.

Coming Soon…

…. On a Bookshelf near you!

In May hope to read….

allie

Publication Date:  May 23, 2017
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing

Goodreads:  Bea has barely been scraping by since her husband died. After falling for a telephone scam, she loses everything and is forced to abandon her trailer. With only two-thirds of a tank in her old van, she heads toward the Pacific Ocean with her cat—on a mission to reclaim what’s rightfully hers, even if it means making others pay for what she lost.

When fifteen-year-old Allie’s parents are jailed for tax fraud, she’s sent to a group home. But when her life is threatened by another resident, she knows she has to get out. She escapes only to find she has nowhere to go—until fate throws Allie in Bea’s path.

Reluctant to trust each other, much less become friends, the two warily make their way up the Pacific Coast. Yet as their hearts open to friendship and love from the strangers they meet on their journey, they find the courage to forge their own unique family—and begin to see an imperfect world with new eyes.

What is coming soon …. to a bookshelf near you?

Let me know – I am always looking for a good read!

Slightly South of Simple

Author: Kristy Woodson Harvey
Publisher: Gallery Books
Genre: Fiction
Source:  Kristy Woodson Harvey

Goodreads:  Caroline Murphy swore she’d never set foot back in the small Southern town of Peachtree Bluff; she was a New York girl born and bred and the worst day of her life was when, in the wake of her father’s death, her mother selfishly forced her to move—during her senior year of high school, no less—back to that hick-infested rat trap where she’d spent her childhood summers. But now that her marriage to a New York high society heir has fallen apart in a very public, very embarrassing fashion, a pregnant Caroline decides to escape the gossipmongers with her nine-year-old daughter and head home to her mother, Ansley.

Ansley has always put her three daughters first, especially when she found out that her late husband, despite what he had always promised, left her with next to nothing. Now the proud owner of a charming waterfront design business and finally standing on her own two feet, Ansley welcomes Caroline and her brood back with open arms. But when her second daughter Sloane, whose military husband is overseas, and youngest daughter and successful actress Emerson join the fray, Ansley begins to feel like the piece of herself she had finally found might be slipping from her grasp. Even more discomfiting, when someone from her past reappears in Ansley’s life, the secret she’s harbored from her daughters their entire lives might finally be forced into the open.

Exploring the powerful bonds between sisters and mothers and daughters, this engaging novel is filled with Southern charm, emotional drama, and plenty of heart.

Ope’s Opinion:  I enjoyed this book from the beginning to the end!  The story was set in the present, but the characters memories of the past were woven into it.  Seeing their memories helped to deepen the characters and made you understand why they reacted to circumstances the way they did.

The relationships in this book are amazingly written.  You can feel the angst, the love, and the struggles each of them going through.  It was such a good read!

 The end left a lot opened because this is the first in a trilogy.  I am excited to follow these characters into the next part of their lives.

Pick up any Kristy Woodson Harvey book and you will not be disappointed!!

The Dance

Author: Dan Walsh / Gary Smalley
Publisher: Revell
Genre: Christian Fiction
Source: Purchased

 

 

Goodreads:  Jim Anderson is a successful businessman, and his wife, Marilyn, is the perfect wife. And why wouldn’t she be? He gives her everything she needs. That’s why Jim never expected to come home one day and find Marilyn gone.
After 27 years of marriage, Marilyn has had enough of feeling unloved and neglected. She wants to experience some measure of happiness before she’s too old to enjoy it, even signing up for dance lessons, something Jim would never do. What will it take for Jim to finally become the man Marilyn needs him to be?

Combining the literary talents of bestselling author Dan Walsh and the relationship expertise of bestselling author Gary Smalley, The Dance is the first novel in The Restoration Series. Readers will get caught up in these flawed but sincere members of the Anderson family as they rediscover genuine love and start a transformation that ultimately affects all of them.

Ope’s Opinion: Let me just say first that I really do enjoy Christian Fiction.  This one was not very positive and a little bit too preachy for my taste.  It was kind of sad too.

The ending came a little too easy, too fast and wrapped up too neatly.  It didn’t really show the work that I think would be needed to repair this marriage.  Since this is the first in a series, it will be interesting to see where the next book goes.

 

No Darker Place

Author: Debra Webb
Publisher: Mira Books
Genre: Mystery
Source:  Won From Shelf Awareness

 

 

Goodreads:  They want revenge. They need each other.

Detective Bobbie Gentry has one objective: to stop the serial killer who robbed her of her husband, her child and her life. Nick Shade understands Bobbie’s painand her desire for vengeance. He’s on a mission of his own, and the murderer known as the Storyteller is next on his list. Nick knows that the best way to find his target is to stick close to Bobbie. But as she becomes more and more reckless in her attempts to lure the Storyteller out of hiding, he has to make a choice. Will he protect her from herself even if it means passing up the chance to take out one more monster? As for Bobbie, she’s forced to decide just how much she can trust this stranger who knows so much about her. And both of them are about to learn whether or not two broken people can save each other.

Ope’s Opinion:  I think for most mystery readers this may be a 4 or 5 chair.  I am more of a who-done-it reader, so this had a bit more graphic details of what happened at the murder scene to the victims then I prefer.  The intensity was there through the whole book, the story felt realistic and the characters were ones you really cared about.

The beginning was a little hard to understand – I felt like I walked into a part two of a series, but this was part one -( I should have read the prequel ).  From page one the relationships were already developed and it was written as if I already knew the relationships between people.  After a couple of chapters I understood who was who.

Although this is a series, I felt it ended well and wrapped things up for this book.  Some of the relationships were left open, but I felt satisfied with the ending.