Series Review: Wildflower by Alecia Whitaker

I received this book for free from Won in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Series Review: Wildflower by Alecia WhitakerWildflower by Alecia Whitaker
Series: Wildflower #1
Published by Poppy on July 1, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 320
Format: Hardcover
Source: Won
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Goodreads
three-half-stars

The best songs come from broken hearts.

Sixteen-year-old Bird Barrett has grown up on the road, singing backup in her family's bluegrass band, and playing everywhere from Nashville, Tennesee to Nowhere, Oklahoma. One fateful night, Bird fills in for her dad by singing lead, and a scout in the audience offers her a spotlight all her own.

Soon Bird is caught up in a whirlwind of songwriting meetings, recording sessions, and music video shoots. Her first single hits the top twenty, and suddenly fans and paparazzi are around every corner. She's even caught the eye of her longtime crush, fellow roving musician Adam Dean. With Bird's star on the rise, though, tradition and ambition collide. Can Bird break out while staying true to her roots?

In a world of glamour and gold records, a young country music star finds her voice.

Wildflower has been sitting on my tbr pile since 2014 (whoops). There’s something so satisfying about knocking out these titles of shame. I’m actually a bit happy that I put this one off for so long, because I feel like I read it at the perfect time: when the country, my personal life, and my recent reads have been pretty dark. Wildflower is fluffy and happy to the max.

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Series Review: Heist Society by Ally Carter

Series Review: Heist Society by Ally CarterHeist Society by Ally Carter
Series: Heist Society #1
Published by Disney Hyperion on February 9, 2010
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery, Romance
Pages: 287
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
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Goodreads
four-half-stars

When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her on a trip to the Louvre…to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria…to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own—scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving “the life” for a normal life proves harder than she’d expected.

Soon, Kat's friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring Kat back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has a good reason: a powerful mobster has been robbed of his priceless art collection and wants to retrieve it. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat's father isn't just on the suspect list, he is the list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat’s dad needs her help.

For Kat, there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it's a spectacularly impossible job? She's got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family's history--and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.

Despite a not totally outstanding experience with Gallagher Girls, Gillian urged me to read Heist Society, and I couldn’t resist the cries of SHIP SHIP SHIP. Immediately, I fell in love with this series the way I’d hoped to with Gallagher Girls.

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Size Doesn’t Matter (150): A Matter of Class; Grimm Tales for Young and Old; The Book of Three

I received this book for free from Library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Size Doesn’t Matter (150): A Matter of Class; Grimm Tales for Young and Old; The Book of ThreeA Matter of Class by Mary Balogh
Published by Carroll & Graf on December 29, 2009
Genres: Historical, Romance
Pages: 208
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library
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Goodreads
four-stars

Just in time for Valentine's Day, from New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh comes yet another classic historical tale that sizzles with romance and unforgettable drama.

Reginald Mason is wealthy, refined, and, by all accounts, a gentleman. However, he is not a gentleman by title, a factor that pains him and his father within the Regency society that upholds station over all else. That is, until an opportunity for social advancement arises, namely, Lady Annabelle Ashton. Daughter of the Earl of Havercroft, a neighbor and enemy of the Mason family, Annabelle finds herself disgraced by a scandal, one that has left her branded as damaged goods. Besmirched by shame, the earl is only too happy to marry Annabelle off to anyone willing to have her.

Though Reginald Mason, Senior, wishes to use Annabelle to propel his family up the social ladder, his son does not wish to marry her, preferring instead to live the wild, single life he is accustomed to. With this, Reginald Senior serves his son an ultimatum: marry Annabelle, or make do without family funds. Having no choice, Reginald consents, and enters into a hostile engagement in which the prospective bride and groom are openly antagonistic, each one resenting the other for their current state of affairs while their respective fathers revel in their suffering.

So begins an intoxicating tale rife with dark secrets, deception, and the trials of love—a story in which very little is as it seems.

I wish I could remember just where I heard about this book so that I could thank that person for recommending A Matter of Class. This romance novella is cute and clever, and I have a need to read ALL of the Mary Balogh ASAP.

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Cover Snark (228): It Had to Be Snark

Welcome to Cover Snark, where the people are snarky and the covers quiver in fear. Since I don’t write many snarky book reviews here on A Reader of Fictions, Cover Snark is my outlet. If you click on the title of the book, where possible, I’ve linked to Goodreads. Clicking on the cover itself will show you the cover in a larger size, in most cases. Feel free to love covers I hate and vice versa. Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Please note that you should by no means contact the author if you do not like their cover; they likely have ZERO control. Feel free to express opinions of the covers in the comments, but please do not @ an author on Twitter because of anything you’ve seen here.

Shiny and New:

1. The Explorer – Katherine Rundell

Thoughts: This is exactly how Lord of the Flies started.

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Review: Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia

I received this book for free from ALA in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca ZappiaEliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
Published by Greenwillow on May 30, 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 400
Format: ARC
Source: ALA
AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-half-stars

In the real world, Eliza Mirk is shy, weird, and friendless. Online, Eliza is LadyConstellation, anonymous creator of the wildly popular webcomic Monstrous Sea. Eliza can’t imagine enjoying the real world as much as she loves her digital community, and has no desire to try.

Then Wallace Warland, Monstrous Sea's biggest fanfiction writer, transfers to her school. Wallace thinks Eliza is just another fan, and Eliza begins to wonder if a life offline might be worthwhile. But when Eliza’s secret is accidentally shared with the world, everything she’s built—her story, her relationship with Wallace, and even her sanity—begins to fall apart.

With illustrations from Eliza’s webcomic, as well as screenshots from Eliza’s online forums and snippets of Wallace's fanfiction, this uniquely formatted book will appeal to fans of Noelle Stevenson’s Nimona and Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl.

For once the comparisons in the description are one hundred percent on point. I was thinking of Nimona every time I read one of the comic excerpts, though the stories are very different (and I didn’t really care about Monstrous Sea at all). The subject matter of the story itself obviously hearkens to Fangirl, though there’s a difference of tone and scale here. I’d say it’s like Fangirl meets Letters to the Lost, adding in the darkness and epistolary sort of elements of the latter. Eliza and Her Monsters is a beautiful, painful book about mental health and writing, and if those things appeal to you, you need to read it.

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