Review - Hooked by Catherine Greenman

Title: Hooked
Author: Catherine Greenman
Publisher: Delacorte Books
Publish Date: Aug 9, 2011
Hardcover, 276 pages

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Thea isn't the character I thought her to be. The has interesting relationships with her parents - her mother is a hippie with no real focus, nor parenting skills; her father is overprotective and has his own idea of how her life should be lived. She then falls in love with a guy who I kept wondering what it was she really finds attractive. She talks a lot about his wandering eye which resulted from a freak accident. How he likes her from the beginning, but isn't really all that attentive. Then to be with him, she starts missing school, not doing homework and forgetting about practice SAT tests. Before she knows it, she is pregnant. Though she tells everyone she is taking care of it, she kind of forgets it's even progressing. She is able to lie to everyone til one day she lets it out of the bag - she wants this baby. Her first real decision to take life into her own hands is pretty much her downfall.

I wanted to like Thea so much, but she kept letting me down and making stupid decisions. She seemed smart, but did things against her father out of spite. She never really tried to talk to him. She also used her mother's inability to be present as an excuse as her relationship. I was confused through this book. I wanted to like it so much because there were key stories and people I loved, but then they turned around and did something that left me questioning their motives.

It was a good book. It covered some very important topics of teenage pregnancy, parental relationships, opening up and knowing who you really are. It can be so hard to hear your own voice when everyone else is yelling over yours. Finding a personal voice is a struggle just from being a kid and having parents, but add to that any major obstacles and it ends up being a bit like this book.

Summary -
Thea Galehouse has always known how to take care of herself. With a flighty club-owner mom and a standoffish, recovering-alcoholic dad, Thea has made her own way in her hometown of New York, attending the prestigious and competitive Stuyvesant High School. But one chat with Will, a handsome and witty senior, and she's a goner—completely hooked on him and unable to concentrate on anything else.
Always worried that she loves Will more than he loves her, Thea is pleasantly surprised when their romance weathers his move to college and Will goes out of his way to involve her in his life. But then, Thea misses a period. And that starts Thea and Will on a wild ride that neither of them could have possibly prepared for. When they decide to keep the baby, their concerned parents chip in what they can to keep Will in school and give both teenagers a comfortable place to raise their child. But when a freak accident leaves Thea shaken and threatens to upend their little family altogether, Thea is forced to turn to the last place she would have chosen for comfort: her stiff, uncompromising father.
This smart, touching first novel brims with realistic, beautifully drawn characters, and reminds us that love is never as easy or predictable as we might like it to be.

Review - The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

Title: The Body Finder
The Body Finder #1
Author: Kimberly Derting
Publisher: March 16, 2010
Publish Date: Harper Teen
Hardcover, 336 pages

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Because I would like to be a published author one day and know how frickin hard it is to write, I can't stand those people who complain about how slow an author is to come out with the next book. However, with that being said, I LOVE KIMBERLY DERTING!! I am now officially a HUGE fan of her writing and for the love of god, PLEASE TELL HER TO WRITE ANOTHER BOOK!

I read both the books in the series up to this point in probably two days. I am hooked!!

Violet is a girl with a special, secret power of being able to detect dead bodies. Animals and humans call to her when dying of unnatural causes. Ever since she was a little girl they have pulled her to them. Her family has spent massive amounts of time and energy trying to keep her secret, but when a serial murder enters the area and she starts feeling the echos off not only the victims, but the murder himself, it gets interesting.

I usually do not like scary topics. I like to sleep at night, but I was so fascinated with this book. The topic was so well written too. It made it completely believable and I loved every moment.

Violet also has a love interest that even she is unaware of until he starts to become the center of attention at school. The attraction and friendship that Jay and Violet share is wonderfully youthful and hopeful. They have been friends all their lives and as we learn about Violet, we also learn about Jay. Kimberly Derting crafts the intertwining relationship that I too, fell in love and hoped for a love connection.

Summary -
Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her morbid secret ability. While the sixteen-year-old is confused by her new feelings for her best friend since childhood, she is more disturbed by her "power" to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered. Since she was a little girl, she has felt the echoes that the dead leave behind in the world... and the imprints that attach to their killers.

Violet has never considered her strange talent to be a gift; it mostly just led her to find the dead birds her cat had tired of playing with. But now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet on her quest to find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved to find herself hoping that Jay's intentions are much more than friendly. But even as she's falling intensely in love, Violet is getting closer and closer to discovering a killer... and becoming his prey herself.

Tuesday - Tune In & Teaser

I have been singing this song since I walked in the cafe and found one of our baristas mopping the floor. I'm on the hunt for the DVD version.

It's a Hard Knock Life from the movie, Annie

She was familiar enough with the meaning of this new, and misplaced, noise. Or at least with what it signified. She had been hearing sounds, or seeing colors, or smelling smells like this for years. For as long as she could remember.
Echos, she called them.

The Body Finder
Kimberly Derting

Review - A Year and Six Seconds by Isabel Gillies

Title: A Year and Six Seconds
Author: Isabel Gillies
Publish Date:
Hardcover, 256 pages

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I am not sure if I agree with Isabel's idea of falling in love in six seconds. With my ex husband maybe, but that didn't last. My current boyfriend, I feel the love she speaks of, the kind where I see marriage, kids and an entire life together, but I am almost positive that I fell in love with him over a year (possibly just half a year).

Having been in a similar situation of loss and having to move on, I completely understand her feelings of having a beginning, middle and end of transition. Though for me there was a lot of numbness followed by confusion and often, "Are you kidding me?" anger.

Her biography was heart-felt, true and completely and utterly understandable. Though I always hate to do this, it is a bit of, if you liked "Eat, Love, Pray" by Elizabeth Gilbert you will actually like this one more. It isn't as whiny or poor-me. It is much more of Isabel being in reality and walking us through how she is living. We get to walk in her shoes as she transitions. I was so incredibly sad when she spoke of her kids and wondering if they alone would help him stay. The parts with her living with her parents again and watching their faces and seeing their expressions. Wonderful writing.

Summary -

When you're waiting for love, what seems like a lifetime may only be a year and six seconds.

Isabel Gillies, the New York Times bestselling author of the memoir Happens Every Day, now picks up where she left off in the true story of her valiant yet sometimes bumbling effots to pick herself up after her husband leaves her for another woman and she is told by a friend it "happens every day."

It is winter when she arrives home in Manhattan, with her two young sons in tow. Her husband has left her, and she's forced to move back in with her parents until she can figure out what to do next.

Determined to feel strong, remain lovable, and be productive, she creates and tackles a staggering to-do list, starting with (and not necessarily in order of importance): get along with her parents in tight quarters; find a preschool spot for son mid-year in Manhattan; break down only in front of best friend and not in front of children; receive one great, romantic kiss.

She makes her lists, she dates, she cries, she and her whole crowded family get the flu; and then, just when Isabel least expects it, she falls in love. A Year and Six Seconds is a buoyant, real, romantic comedy with an uplifting message, reminding us that while we all struggle and stumble at times, somehow we can come out just fine on the other side.