Diva Booknerd

I like to organize my own book shelves, I'll be damned if someone tries to do it for me.

Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always - Elissa Janine Hoole http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/sometimes-never-sometimes-always-by.html
Sometimes Never, Sometimes always could possibly be the coming of age novel that represents small town America. Cass is a follower but desperately wants to march to the beat of her own drum, she just doesn't know how. Her parents believe in the power of prayer, that supernatural novels are the devils work and that teenagers have no right to privacy. What happens when teens are forced into leading a life of sunshine and rainbows? They rebel, but Cass's rebellion is subtle, it's the influence of others and her lack of self confidence that are her undoing.

Elissa Janine Hoole has woven a story that incorporates fears that all teens will relate to, cyber bullying, finding independence, the loss of friendship and first crushes, the inclusion of small town bigotry and the church's extreme views against, well, basically everything that could be seen as fun, may leave staunch followers a little uncomfortable. I'm by no means religious, but do understand that religion should be based on forgiveness and respect for your fellow man, but the Joyful News Bible Church is extreme in their views. I really enjoyed it, it was engaging, and the supporting characters leave an impact, even the Gordon High mean girls. I would love to read Drew's story, she could be the inner voice of most struggling teens.
Just One Year (Just One Day, #2) - Gayle Forman http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/just-one-year-by-gayle-forman.html
Just One Year is the story of Williem, who's story begins after spending one perfect day with American Allyson. Only Williem can't remember. Williem can recall a smile, a soft touch of her hand, but the rest alludes him. As he retraces his steps, the memories of Lulu become clearer, except for her name. Is he falling in love with that one perfect day, or the girl behind it?

Gayle Forman has created another brilliant adventure romance, taking us to several corners of the globe. Her descriptions of the surroundings immerse readers within the world she's created, sweeping us up in the romanticism of her characters. I was itching for Allyson and Williem's story to continue and keeping my fingers crossed for a third book for the ultimate happily ever after.

The Redemption of Callie and Kayden (The Coincidence, #2)

The Redemption of Callie and Kayden (The Coincidence, #2) - Jessica Sorensen http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/the-redemption-of-callie-kayden.html
The Redemption Of Callie And Kayden picks up where the first book in the series left off, with Kayden's physically abusive father trying to destroy Kayden. His secret is finally out, and Callie now knows that he self mutilates to ease his pain. The two are irrevocably broken, but their Redemption does have a happy ending, but first they must battle their demons... Alone.

The Coincidence series isn't for the faint of heart, as the characters experience both physical, mental and sexual abuse. It's raw and confronting, but sadly realistic. Jessica Sorensen is brilliant in creating lovable, yet realistic characters that readers can relate to. I would love to read Luke's story and fingers crossed that Jessica will tell his tale.
The Spectacular Now - Tim Tharp http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/the-spectacular-now-by-tim-tharp.html
The Spectacular Now isn't a romantic comedy, it's dark, brooding and the story of Sutter, problem drinker, party boy and life changer. He uses alcohol as a crutch to dull the ache of his mother, who only cares about appearances, his sister and husband, the golden couple and his father. But Sutter isn't willing to change, he enjoys the flighty lifestyle, but sadly drags everyone down with him. This is his tale of finding himself and faced with the prospect of wanting to be a better person, verses sinking even further into his depressive state.

Be warned, most readers will feel frustrated by the ending. Another perfect example why I enforce my self imposed John Green hiatus. It also applies to The Spectacular Now.
Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock - Matthew Quick http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/forgive-me-leonard-peacock-by-mathew.html
Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock is disturbing, real and raw. It's the story of a young man who feels he has nothing to live for, and plans on taking out a fellow student in the process. He has acquaintances in his life, but sadly no one realises how troubled Leonard is, apart from teacher Herr Silverman. At first glance, it feels as though it could be seen as a book to bring to light the lack of gun control and access of weapons to our children, but it isn't. It's a psychological viewpoint from a suicidal young man and how he's been let down by the people in his life. Leonard may be a lot of things, but crazy isn't one of them, and the further the reader reaches, the more his sanity will come to light.

This isn't for the faint of heart, it'll take hold and throw you into Leonard's world of sadness, frustration and depression. Your comfort zone will be blown to pieces. Make no doubt, Forgive Me Leonard Peacock is confronting and will leave you with a heavy heart. Only for more mature adult readers, in no way would I allow a young teen to read this. The social message is important, but how it comes together is far too confronting and mature for most teens.
Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/fangirl-by-rainbow-rowell.html
I was itching to get my hands on a copy of Fangirl, becoming a fan of Rainbow Rowell after reading Eleanor & Park, but I was so disappointed. I just didn't get it. It wasn't the quirky, offbeat romance that I had expected it to be. I kept waiting for it, the point where the book builds into a specific event that holds significance, but it never came. If it did, I missed it, thus missing the point entirely. Cath was dull, beyond nerdom which evidently may have provided her with a personality. For a girl who was surrounded by bright and brilliant characters, she was just too bland in comparison.

I found myself skimming though, especially the Carry On scenes. It was too much going from snippets from a Harry Potter fantasy world, back to the life of the monotonous Cath. I desperately wanted to love it, I needed to like it, but I ended up begging myself just to endure it.
Lost and Found - Nicole  Williams http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/lost-and-found-by-nicole-williams.html
Lost And Found was a pleasant surprise, I expected it to follow the usual young / new adult template, and it did to a certain extent. The broken girl, her handsome young savior, the potential love triangle, but the difference was the likability of the characters. Jesse was simply lovely. He wasn't a masculine, chest beating protagonist, but the strong, silent type. It was a refreshing change.

There is no definitive ending, which will frustrate some. I'm assuming it will make us more eager to begin on the second book in the Lost and Found series. I liked it, but didn't love it. Perhaps I'm just over the new adult book craze.
Confessions of an Angry Girl (Confessions, #1) - Louise Rozett I couldn't get through it. Too many characters were not introduced, but thrown in all at once, teachers calling the teens by the last names, students using each others first names, and all within the first 4%. It gave me a headache. I may try again at a later date.
American Girl On Saturn - Nikki Godwin http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/american-girl-on-saturn-by-nikki-godwin_14.html
I absolutely adored American Girl On Saturn. It was funny, charming and boytatsic. It was the initially the stunning cover that drew me in, but I was following author Christina Channelle's status updates while she was reading through, and I simply had to have it... And it didn't disappoint, whatsoever. It surpassed my expectations and once I begun reading, I couldn't put it down. It's one of those titles that will cheer you up, pull you out of a book funk and leave you warm and fuzzy.

I haven't had the pleasure of reading anything that Nikki Godwin has wrote before, but I'm certainly a fan now and will be seeking out her other releases. No doubt, you'll fall in love with Spaceships Around Saturn too. I'm not afraid to declare, I'm now a fully fledged Saturnite too.
Sia - Josh Grayson Sia was the story of a girl who used a traumatic event, to change her life for the better. Her memory loss is devastating, but the insight into life on the streets, truly is unimaginable. The down and out people that Sia's situation introduces the reader to, are realistic, but charming. Carol literally changes Sia's life. A woman who lives each day not knowing where she'll sleep, eat or if she'll survive to see the sun rise, and she takes Sia under her wing and protects her against the unforgiving street life. My heart bled for Carol, she was warm and kind hearted, and I wanted to hear more of her story.

It's the ultimate story of the popular rich girl being served a huge dose of reality and being able to start her life again, the way it should be. A brilliant debut for first time novelist Josh Grayson, who isn't afraid to create raw characters and confronting situations.
My Unexpected Forever (Beaumont, #2) - Heidi  McLaughlin http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/my-unexpected-forever-by-heidi.html
My Unexpected Forever tells the story of single Dad Harrison, and widower Katelyn, each the best friend of Josie and Liam, book one in the Beaumont series. Katelyn is struggling with her husband's death, the funeral bringing Liam back into Josie's life, and bringing Harrison with him. Twins Elle and Payton have already formed a bond with Harrison's son Quinn, having adapted to the quiet life of Beaumont, far removed from bustling L.A.

It's clear that Katelyn and Harrison are both attracted to one another, but with the importance of their respective children's feelings, neither are willing to upset the close family unit, including their closest friends. The story of two single parents, testing the waters of new and uncharted territory is heartwarming, sizzling and hopeful. I preferred My Unexpected Forever, compared to Forever My Girl. It felt more realistic, emotional and I enjoyed every moment.

Will these two find the happily ever after they both so sorely deserve?
How to Say Goodbye in Robot - Natalie Standiford http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/how-to-say-goodbye-in-robot-by-natalie.html
How To Say Goodbye In Robot begun like your average teen contemporary novel, but soon turned into a quirky, and emotional read that will leave you not knowing how to feel. It wasn't the characters, or the storyline that stood out, it's how it was woven and meshed together of a tale of two teens dealing with their demons and changing each others lives.

It will rip you apart and piece you back together... And you'll love every minute of it.
Camp Boyfriend - J.K. Rock, J.K. Rock http://www.divabooknerd.com/2013/09/camp-boyfriend-by-j-k-rock.html
Camp Boyfriend was a fun read for the teen audience, about love, life and finding your own identity. Lauren is a fickle girl, who I just didn't connect with. Understandably, she can't make a decision and tries to be everyone's friend, with disastrous results, almost ending up with no one. The reader won't know who to hope ends up with Lauren, but it wasn't who I was expecting. I don't know how she came to that decision either. Regardless, it's fun, flirty and lighthearted. A perfect beach read for those who want something that doesn't require your undivided attention.
Come Back to Me - Coleen Patrick Come Back To Me wasn't at all what I had expected. Sadly, it was confusing and anticlimactic... But it wasn't all bad. There were aspects that could have made the difference between an average novel and an incredible storyline that readers could invest in. Whitney's rehabilitation was barely touched upon, as the story picks up on her final day. The characters within her support group were eclectic, but were only touched upon and had the potential to offer the reader an insight into life at Gosley.

Kyle was... Well... Kyle was a tool. He's a user and Whitney's rekindled friendship is meaningless. He stares into the distance under his drug induced, alcoholic cloud and she sits with him hoping he'll suddenly remember what she can't. For someone who is struggling with addiction herself, how does she not relapse in his company?

Evan is a decent guy, musical, works with children, straight laced and seems as though he genuinely likes Whitney without asking for anything in return. But We barely see their relationship develop, as she is only intent on uncovering her memories and only believes that Kyle can help her. It's frustrating, as the reader will genuinely believe that what Whitney discovers will be an incredible revelation, perhaps an integral plot twist, but no, it isn't. I felt let down by the storyline, as it could have been so much more.
Not Pretty Enough - Jaimie Admans http://divainpyjamas.blogspot.com.au/2013/09/not-pretty-enough-by-jaimie-admans.html
Not Pretty Enough is absolutely hilarious! Chessie is obsessed with Lloyd, the boy that has it all. She believes that with her abnormally large breasts and his gigantic height, they could be a match made in heaven. Sadly, Chessie is too shy and decides to watch life from the sidelines. Lloyd brings out the worst in her, lying, scheming and falling over herself. It becomes painfully clear that Chessie is heading for self destruction, but it seems life will teach her a lesson that every teen has faced at one time or another.

I really enjoyed it, until the last few chapters. The fun and hilarity suddenly became too serious, too quickly and threw me for a loop. It was the difference between 3 ½ and 4 ½ stars.
The Boyfriend App - Katie Sise 3.5 Stars
http://divainpyjamas.blogspot.com.au/2013/09/the-boyfriend-app-by-katie-sise.html
The Boyfriend App was cute. It was a light, fluffy and fun read that will appeal to computer nerds, teens and those who have ever been at the mercy of a mean girl. The technical terms were overwhelming, but luckily it didn't venture any further than a few paragraphs, or The Boyfriend App may have read as though it were a manual, rather than a novel. Audrey is an intelligent girl with no self esteem, battling bullies and a crush on fellow computer enthusiast Aiden. Readers will follow her journey from the shy meek girl, to corporate hunter.

Entertaining and great for teens.