The Accidental Beauty Queen by: Teri Wilson Review, Excerpt & Giveaway


Gallery Books | Trade Paperback Original
ISBN: 9781501197604 | $16.00
E-ISBN: 9781501197611 | $7.99
Audio-ISBN: 9781508283553 | $17.99


http:// http://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-Accidental-Beauty-Queen/Teri-Wilson/9781508283553 

In this charming romantic comedy perfect for fans of Meg Cabot and Sophie Kinsella, critically acclaimed author Teri Wilson shows us that sometimes being pushed out of your comfort zone leads you to the ultimate prize. 

Charlotte Gorman loves her job as an elementary school librarian, and is content to experience life through the pages of her books. Which couldn’t be more opposite from her identical twin sister. Ginny, an Instagram-famous beauty pageant contestant, has been chasing a crown since she was old enough to enunciate the words world peace, and she’s not giving up until she gets the title of Miss American Treasure. And Ginny’s refusing to do it alone this time.        

She drags Charlotte to the pageant as a good luck charm, but the winning plan quickly goes awry when Ginny has a terrible, face-altering allergic reaction the night before the pageant, and Charlotte suddenly finds herself in a switcheroo the twins haven’t successfully pulled off in decades.        

Woefully unprepared for the glittery world of hair extensions, false eyelashes, and push-up bras, Charlotte is mortified at every unstable step in her sky-high stilettos. But as she discovers there’s more to her fellow contestants than just wanting a sparkly crown, Charlotte realizes she has a whole new motivation for winning.

About the Author:

Teri Wilson is the author/creator of the Hallmark Channel Original Movies Unleashing Mr. Darcy, Marrying Mr. Darcy, and The Art of Us, as well as a fourth Hallmark movie currently in development. Teri is a double finalist in the prestigious 2018 RWA RITA awards for her novels The Princess Problem and Royally Wed. Teri also writes an offbeat fashion column for the royal blog What Would Kate Do and is a frequent guest contributor for its sister site, Meghan’s Mirror. She’s been a contributor for both HelloGiggles and Teen Vogue, covering books, pop culture, beauty, and everything royal. In 2017, she served as a national judge for the Miss United States pageant in Orlando, Florida, and has since judged in the Miss America system. She has a major weakness for cute animals, pretty dresses, Audrey Hepburn films, and good books. Visit her at TeriWilson.net or on Twitter @TeriWilsonAuthr.

My Review

 This was an endearing read about twin sisters who haven’t always seen eye to eye on things.  While on twin is trying to follow in the footsteps of their late Beauty Queen mother, the other hides among stacks of books as a librarian.  Even though Charlotte wants nothing to do with the beauty pageant life, she is there to support her twin.  Then the unexpected happens, an allergic reaction that “blows up” in their faces.  

The old cliche of twins switching places comes into play in this story but it is done hilariously.  I loved the dimension of the character traits of these sisters.  They were just two women being fake, they read as if they were real women going through these events.  

This was a great contemporary book that really worked.  It was a bit reminiscent of the movie Miss Congeniality but that made it even more fun.

I gave this book 4 crowns. 

Excerpt

My sister has always been the pretty one. The Jane Bennet to my Elizabeth, the Meg March to my Jo.

It’s been this way for so long that I’ve never questioned it. It’s never even bothered me much. It just is.

Ginny is my sister, and I love her, no matter how different our lives are. And trust me, they’re about as opposite as you can imagine. But the chasm between our worlds has never been quite so glaringly obvious as it is now, because instead of restocking books on their respective shelves, I’m standing in an elevator at the posh Huntington Spa Resort in Orlando, Florida, on the first Monday afternoon of summer.

For starters, at five feet seven, I’m by far the shortest person of the half dozen or so on board. This is a rarity for me. As an elementary school librarian, I’m accustomed to towering over people for the majority of my waking hours. I’m also used to sitting in tiny chairs and using tiny, blunt-edged scissors, but that’s beside the point. Five feet seven isn’t short. . . .

                Unless you’re riding an elevator packed with beauty queens.

                I don’t know what I expected when I signed on to spend a week cheering for my sister at the Miss American Treasure pageant, but it wasn’t this. The preliminary competition doesn’t start for another two days, so why are they all wearing crowns and sashes already? And what is going on with their shoes?

                Beauty pageant contestants wear heels. I know this, obviously. I mean, I’ve seen Miss Congeniality at least twenty times over the years, thanks to Ginny. But these are beyond high heels. Gracie Lou Freebush wouldn’t have lasted a minute in them.

                No offense to Sandra Bullock. I’m just saying.

I tighten my grip on the handle of my suitcase, suddenly extremely conscious of the state of my hair. Orlando is one of the most humid places on earth, and the half hour ride on the airport shuttle was not kind. For once, I actually feel sorry for Ginny. It’s one thing to be expected to look perfect onstage, but hotel elevators should be a safe space. I, for one, plan to be roaming the halls in a spa bathrobe and complimentary slippers en route to the vending machine for the majority of my stay.

But to each her own.

                Besides, Ginny chose this life, just as surely as I chose mine. She also gets paid more for one sponsored Instagram post than I make in a week, and when I remember this, I keep my sympathy in check.

The elevator comes to a stop on the fifth floor, which has clearly been reserved for the pageant, because we all disembark in a glamorous, glittering herd.

Myself being the exception.

No one seems to notice my presence, though. The Hogwarts T-shirt I’m wearing might as well be an invisibility cloak. Fine. I’m not here to make friends. I’m here for the chance to stay in Ginny’s luxury hotel room for a week, for free, and completely nerd out at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

I’m also here for moral support, of course. I plan on being at every single pageant event, cheering like a maniac while inwardly cringing in horror at the very thought of prancing around in only a tiny swimsuit and a crown. But since the competition doesn’t start until 5:00 p.m., that leaves my mornings and afternoons free to hit up the theme park. I’ve emptied my paltry savings account and invested in a five-day unlimited pass. Bring on the butter beer.

But first, I must locate our room amid a sea of glitz and sparkle. According to the text Ginny sent when I landed, we’re in 511. All of my elevator pals are in rooms along the same stretch of corridor. Half the doors on the floor have hangtags on the knobs that read, Do not disturb! This Miss American Treasure contestant needs her beauty sleep!

I roll my eyes mightily.

Dangling from the knob of room 511 is one such tag, but I highly doubt Ginny is actually sleeping because I can hear the television booming through the door. I knock extra hard so she can hear me above the din of whatever reality show she’s probably watching.

Just please God don’t let it be the Kardashians.

An explosion of barks answers my knock. I take a deep breath. I’ve somehow forgotten all about my sister’s French bulldog mix, Buttercup. Ginny adopted her a month ago as part of her “platform.” I’m not sure exactly what that means. She’s a pageant queen, not a politician. But according to approximately five million posts on Ginny’s Instagram, she volunteers regularly at her local shelter in support of her animal rescue policy.

If memory serves, last year her platform was anti-bullying. But so many other contestants on the pageant circuit had already thrown themselves into the anti-bullying movement that she felt pressured to switch to something else. In other words, she got bullied into giving up her anti-bullying platform. Oh, the irony.

The door to the hotel room swings open, and Ginny is standing there in a white spa bathrobe with her hair piled on top of her head in a messy-yet-artful twist. She’s got one of those serum-soaked sheet masks stuck to her face—the kind that make regular people look like something straight out of a bad horror movie.

                Except Ginny isn’t a regular person. So instead she looks like Gwyneth Paltrow enjoying a quiet day of self-care.

“Charlotte, you’re here!”

“Yep. My flight was right on time.” Thank God. I’m ready to make the most out of day one on my unlimited pass.

“Come on in.” She holds the door open wider.

The room is a double, with side-by-side queen beds and a balcony overlooking a pool flanked by umbrella-covered lounge chairs, a tiki bar, and two perfectly symmetrical rows of palm trees swaying in the balmy Florida breeze. Any spare moments I have this week that don’t include Harry Potter will be spent right there, with my feet up and a piña colada in hand. It’s been so long since I’ve taken an actual vacation that the mental picture I’ve just conjured nearly makes me weep.

“This is gorgeous. Ginny, thanks again for inviting me.”

“Are you kidding? I’m so glad you’re here. Dad and Susan aren’t coming until the finals.” Her smile falters. Behind the face mask, I can see her full lips tip into a frown.

I know exactly what she’s thinking. “You’ll make the finals. I know you will. You’re a shoo-in for the top twenty.”

Ginny always makes the finals. She’s up onstage every year alongside the winner and the runners-up. She’s just never managed to crack the top five.

“This year will be different,” I assure her.

She nods. “It has to be.”

As much as I hate to see my sister devoting her life to chasing a silly crown, and even though I positively loathe the pageant scene, my heart gives a little tug. Sometimes I forget why she got started in all of this. But every once in a while, when Ginny’s composure slips, I remember that this is her way of feeling connected to the mother we barely knew. The crushing sense of loss that inevitably follows always seems to catch me off guard. It’s in those moments— moments like this one—that I understand her dream.

I paste a smile on my face. “It will. I promise.”

I have no right to make that kind of promise. After all, I’m not judging this thing.

Truly, why would anyone want that job?

But it’s so rare to see my sister like this that I can’t stop myself. She’s always been the poster child for confidence.

Which just goes to show how much this particular pageant means to her. More than all the others combined.

“You’re right.” She nods with renewed vigor. “Of course I’ll make the finals. This is my year.”

“Definitely.” Pep talk over for now, I head toward the bed on the far side of the room—the one that’s still neatly made and not covered in anything bedazzled.

                Every item on Ginny’s bed shines like a disco ball, including her official Miss American Treasure tote bag. I’m beginning to understand why she uses one of those sleepmask things like Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I might need to invest in one myself.

As I cross the room, Buttercup launches herself at my wheeled suitcase, growling and nipping at it as it drags behind me. By the time I’m within a foot of my bed, she’s fully attached herself to it and I’m hauling both luggage and bulldog.

“Is this normal behavior?” I ask. It can’t be, can it?

Ginny waves a dismissive hand.

I give Buttercup a little nudge with the toe of my Adidas sneaker. She backs away, peering up at me with her bulgy little eyes. They almost seem to point in two different directions. Like plastic googly eyes.

We stare each other down for a second, and then she resumes her attack on my luggage.

“Is she always so”—I pause, struggling for an appropriate adjective—“headstrong?”

Buttercup and I have never been properly introduced. I only know her via Ginny’s Instagram, where she’s usually doing something less destructive and far more adorable.

“Buttercup is shy,” Ginny says by way of explanation.

I look down at the snarling dog. “Sorry, I’m not getting shy here.”

                “You’re stressing her out. She’s not used to strangers and new experiences. She’s a rescue dog, remember? The poor thing sat in the shelter for four months before I adopted her.”

Ginny checks the position of her sheet mask in the large mirror over the bathroom counter. It’s a double vanity, theoretically big enough for both of us. But Ginny’s massive amount of toiletries take up the entire space. “Did you know that seven million dogs and cats enter shelters every year, and half of them end up being euthanized?”

I did not know that, and it’s a horrible, horrible statistic. But her canned delivery prevents me from absorbing the news with the proper level of emotion.

She’s slipped into pageant mode. She’s rattling off more devastating facts and figures about homeless pets, all the while posing with her hand pressed to her heart and her head tilted just so.

I glance at Buttercup. Something tells me she’s heard the speech before.

“Maybe less euthanasia talk in front of the rescue dog?” I suggest. No wonder the poor thing is stressed.

“Oh my God.” Ginny blinks. “Do you think she understands?”

“I have no idea, but why take the chance?” Besides, I can’t handle Ginny’s platform-level intensity right now. I’ve been up since 4:00 a.m.

                “I suppose you’re right.” Ginny scoops Buttercup into her arms.

I take advantage of the cease-fire, lift my suitcase onto the bed, and remove my things, paltry in comparison to the vast wardrobe Ginny has stuffed into the closet and all but one of the dresser drawers. Fortunately, I travel light.

Clotheswise, anyway. Beneath the layers of jeans and T-shirts, four hardback novels line the bottom of my bag. I remove all four and arrange them in a nice, neat stack atop the nightstand closest to my bed.

When I look up, Ginny’s shaking her head. “Are you sure you brought enough reading material?”

“Don’t judge. I’m on vacation, remember?”

“Exactly. You’re a librarian. Your vacation should be book-free.” Ginny makes a zero sign with one of her perfectly manicured hands.

“How are we even related?” It’s not the first time I’ve asked that question, and I know with every fiber of my being that Ginny wonders the same thing sometimes.

How could she not?

“Before you dive into one of those, can you take Buttercup for a quick walk?” She grabs a Barbie-pink leash from her nightstand. And—surprise!—it’s heavily bedazzled. “Pretty please.”

“What? Why me?” My gaze flits toward Buttercup, who’s now positioned on Ginny’s pillow with her plump rear facing me. “She doesn’t even like me. Stranger danger and all that.”

Ginny rolls her eyes. “Stranger danger? You spend too much time with little kids.”

True. She dragged me to yoga once, and I kept referring to easy pose as crisscross applesauce.

Still, Buttercup doesn’t seem any more thrilled by the idea than I am. Also, I’ve already begun typing the address of the theme park into the Uber app on my phone. I’m supposed to be dodging a fire-breathing dragon in Diagon Alley right now, not walking a petulant French bulldog.

“I was kind of hoping to head over to Harry Potter World so I could be back in time for us to have an early dinner. Don’t you have pageant stuff today?” I’m pretty sure she has a date with some spray tanner this afternoon. Her skin tone matches mine right now, and I know from experience that Ginny is usually at least four shades closer to orange when there’s a pageant on the horizon.

“Yes, and of course you can head right over there just as soon as you walk Buttercup. She hasn’t been out since early this morning. I can’t do it—I’m not allowed to leave the room without my sash on.”

I blink. “What?”

“Contestants can’t leave their hotel rooms unless they’re pageant-ready. Outside of this room, I have to wear my sash at all times.”

                I don’t even know what to say, but suddenly the army of beauty queens from the elevator makes more sense. “That’s crazypants. It’s like you’re some kind of pageant hostage. Put your sash on, and take her out yourself.”

Ginny sighs. “Dramatic much? This isn’t some tiny regional pageant. Miss American Treasure is the big time. She’s a role model. You know that.”

I do. I probably know more about that than any of those chattering elevator girls.

“I can’t go out there like this,” she says.

“Fine.” I take the leash from her hands. She’s clearly in no condition to leave the room, although I would pay money to see an Instagram post of Ginny wearing the sash and her sheet mask at the same time.

“Thank you.” Her slender shoulders sag with relief. “I owe you one. We’ll have a great dinner tonight, I promise. It’ll be just like old times.”

Old times?

I don’t believe her for a minute. When we were kids, our favorite dinners included sloppy joes and macaroni and cheese. I can’t remember the last time I saw a carb cross Ginny’s lips.

“Come on, Buttercup,” I mutter.

The portly little dog growls the entire time I’m attaching her leash to her sparkly pink collar. This should be lovely.

“We’ll be right back.” I cast a glance over my shoulder as I lead Buttercup out the door, and Ginny catches my gaze in the mirror.

She gives me a little wave. I wave back, and for a moment, I go still. Rooted to the spot. Ginny’s sheet mask is gone, and her face is bare. Clean. It’s been a while since I’ve seen her makeup-free. Without the airbrushed foundation, the contouring and highlighting, the carefully lined lips and the double layers of false eyelashes, she looks a lot like me.

She looks exactly like me, actually. Same nose. Same eyes. Same heart-shaped face.

Same DNA.

Because even though my sister has always been the pretty one, the beauty queen—the Jane Bennet to my Elizabeth, the Meg March to my Jo—she’s also my twin.

Giveaway

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/831f7b7b2/?

Giveaway open in US only.  Starts 12/9 and ends 12/ 16.  Must be a subscriber to my blog.  18 yrs old or have parents’ permission.

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A Match Made at Christmas By: Patty Blount Nerd Blast, Excerpt and Giveaway

http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2018/11/nerd-blast-match-made-at-christmas-by.html

SYNOPSIS

This book was formerly entitled Goodness and Light

Thirteen years ago, two teens met on the ramp to Ground Zero, on a cold and snowy day, strangers bonding in a moment of grief. The boy pressed a crystal snowflake ornament into the girl’s hand and disappeared into the crowd, unaware that his simple act of kindness saved her from the guilt that threatened to consume her.

Since losing her mom, Elena Larsen hasn’t set foot in New York City — until now. Agreeing to help her sister prepare for her baby’s birth seems like a good way to spend Christmas and Elena vows not to let the monstrous guilt that weighs on her heart ruin everything. But those plans go awry when she meets Lucas Adair, a man whose own grief and guilt just might rival her own.

When Elena discovers Lucas is the boy who gave her that crystal snowflake all those years ago, she can’t accept it as the sign Lucas believes it to be. For her, it means only one thing — even beyond the grave, her mother can never forgive Elena for breaking her heart.

For Lucas, New York is hallowed ground that he can never leave. He spends his days working in the Financial District and his evenings volunteering and it’s almost enough to help him forget what he did. Lucas knows better than to make plans with a woman who will soon be leaving, yet can’t help himself. There’s something about Elena that pulls him in. He doesn’t put much faith in signs but even he starts to believe Elena is his absolution. Now, he only has to convince her.  

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORY

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Patty Blount grew up quiet and a bit invisible in Queens, NY, but found her voice in books. Today, she writes smart and strong characters willing to fight for what’s right. She’s the award-winning author of edgy, realistic, gut-wrenching contemporary and young adult romance. Still a bit introverted, she gets lost often, eats way too much chocolate, and tends to develop mad, passionate crushes on fictional characters. Let’s be real; Patty’s not nearly as cool as her characters, but she is a solid supporter of women’s rights and loves delivering school presentations. 

Patty is best known for her internet issues novels, including SOME BOYS, a 2015 CLMP Firecracker winner and SEND, a 2012 Junior Library Guild Fall Pick. Visit her website at pattyblount.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter. She blogs at YA Outside the Lines and is also active online. She loves hearing from readers, especially when they tell her she’s cool (even though she knows it’s not true), and is easily bribed with chocolate. Never underestimate the power of chocolate.

PHOTO CREDIT: DAN DEMERIAD 
WEBSITE: https://www.pattyblount.com/
TWITTER: @PattyBlount
GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5344531.Patty_Blount
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/PattyBlountNovels
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/pattyblount3/

Giveaway

Giveaway is open to Internationally | Must be 13+ to Enter

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e849f7751532/

ENDS: DECEMBER 27, 2018

Excerpt

A MATCH MADE AT CHRISTMAS BY PATTY BLOUNT EXCERPT

“Where do we start? Where do city people buy Christmas trees?” She put her hands on her hips and looked up and down the street.

When Elena Larsen wasn’t being deliberately aggravating, Lucas decided she was sweet. And beautiful. He looked at her with a wry smile. “You act like you haven’t —” And his laughter faded when the truth struck him between the eyes. “How long has it been, Elena?”

Her face went flat and the light left her eyes. “I haven’t done Christmas since my mother was killed. I avoid the city, the holidays. My friends. Kara came back here for school but—” She held out her arms. “This city…for me, it’s death and, and destruction and hate and—” She broke off, shook her head and lifted a shoulder. “They don’t understand. Our friends are mad at me, she’s mad at me —”

“I get it.” He stopped her with a touch to her cheek. He sucked in a deep breath and got ready to step onto shaky ground. “Pain, grief — they’re isolating things, you know? They’re so huge, they eclipse everything and make you think nobody else feels what you feel, but that’s wrong. Everybody does, Elena. Everybody. When I figured that out, when I finally talked about it, things—”

“Got better?” she asked with a roll of her eyes and Lucas understood she’d heard this before.

For a long moment, he considered lying and finally shook his head. “No. Not better. Just less huge, you know?” When she looked at him sideways, he shrugged. “Honey, it’s like a club that should never have members but it does and membership means there’s a certain amount of…of common ground.” He finished with a wave toward the Freedom Tower.

She let out a long sigh. “I’m trying. I really am.”

He put down the shopping bag and took her in his arms. “Elena, I know you are. I think it’s incredible — you’re incredible — that you’re here now and trying to do things for Kara.”

To his surprise, her arms circled him and she put her head on his shoulder. “For all the good that’s doing,” she murmured into his jacket. “I hate that I made her cry.”

Lucas held her a moment longer, the old familiar fury straining the leash he’d kept it on for the last decade. He pushed it away and tried to focus on her, instead. There was something about her…something almost familiar in a way. She smelled like vanilla and he thought of the Christmas cookies she’d yet to bake. She felt warm and comfortable in his arms. His arms tightened around her because he wanted to make her laugh, make her feel safe. He wanted that like he wanted his next breath.

Al would insist it was a sign, he concluded. But then again, she wasn’t staying. She’d been clear on that. So what kind of cosmic practical joke would point him toward a woman who would leave as soon as they got comfortable around each other?

So you have to work at something for once.

He went still. He could swear the voice in his head was his mother’s. Every muscle in his body tensed and he brushed it aside. Instead, he made a decision. Made a wish

When she was all entranced by the magic of Christmas trees newly decorated, he’d invite her to shop with him to put presents under it. He’d make her his famous hot cocoa. He’d show her Radio City and Rockefeller Center. He’d take her through Central Park in a carriage. He’d prove to her that New York was still New York — even with its scars.

She nodded. “Okay.”

He swept her hair behind her ear, cradled her face. “I think you’re beautiful and incredibly loyal to brave a city you’re so damn afraid of just so you could be here for your sister.” Her tongue darted out to lick her lips and Lucas didn’t think — couldn’t think anymore. He leaned in, drew her closer, his fingers sifting through the soft silkspun hair, his mouth just a breath from hers. 

Copyright © 2018 by Patty Blount

For Better and Worse by: Margot Hunt

Description from the Publisher through Netgalley

On their first date back in law school, Natalie and Will Clarke bonded over drinks, dinner and whether they could get away with murder. Now married, they’ll put the latter to the test when an unchecked danger in their community places their son in jeopardy. Working as a criminal defense attorney, Nat refuses to rely on the broken legal system to keep her family safe. She knows that if you want justice…you have to get it yourself.

Shocked to discover Nat’s taken matters into her own hands, Will has no choice but to dirty his, also. His family is in way too deep to back down now. He’s just not sure he recognizes the woman he married. Nat’s always been fiercely protective, but never this ruthless or calculating. With the police poking holes in their airtight plan, what will be the first to fall apart: their scandalous secret—or their marriage?

My Review

All I had heard about this book was exactly what I posted above.  I was thrown for a loop when I read the book and found out what the story was really about.  I really struggled through the content of the story although it was well written.  I did read through to the end because I wanted to know the outcome but I really had a hard time “enjoying” this book because of the subject matter.  

I do not want to tell you what it was about because it seems that the publishers are keeping the content a secret but it is a difficult topic to read about.  

I am struggling to rate this book because of the mix of emotions about the content and the actual writing.  I am going to hesitantly give this book 3 crowns. 

I received an E-Arc of this book by the publishers through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

My Favorite Half-Night Stand by: Christina Lauren

Description from the Publisher through Netgalley

By the New York Times bestselling author who “hilariously depicts modern dating” (Us Weekly), My Favorite Half-Night Stand is a laugh-out-loud romp through online dating and its many, many fails.

Millie Morris has always been one of the guys. A UC Santa Barbara professor, she’s a female-serial-killer expert who’s quick with a deflection joke and terrible at getting personal. And she, just like her four best guy friends and fellow professors, is perma-single.

So when a routine university function turns into a black tie gala, Mille and her circle make a pact that they’ll join an online dating service to find plus-ones for the event. There’s only one hitch: after making the pact, Millie and one of the guys, Reid Campbell, secretly spend the sexiest half-night of their lives together, but mutually decide the friendship would be better off strictly platonic.

But online dating isn’t for the faint of heart. While the guys are inundated with quality matches and potential dates, Millie’s first profile attempt garners nothing but dick pics and creepers. Enter “Catherine”—Millie’s fictional profile persona, in whose make-believe shoes she can be more vulnerable than she’s ever been in person. Soon “Catherine”and Reid strike up a digital pen-pal-ship…but Millie can’t resist temptation in real life, either. Soon, Millie will have to face her worst fear—intimacy—or risk losing her best friend, forever.

Perfect for fans of Roxanne and She’s the Man, Christina Lauren’s latest romantic comedy is full of mistaken identities, hijinks, and a classic love story with a modern twist. Funny and fresh, you’ll want to swipe right on My Favorite Half-Night Stand.

My Review

This was my first read from the author duo that goes by the pen name Christina Lauren and I had a blast reading it.  It was the perfect mix of fun and romance.  It was exactly what I needed to read as a refresher in between the other books I had been reading.  

The writing style of these two authors flows perfectly and you can’t tell that it is not written by one person.  The relationships in this story were down to earth and sweet and not over the top cliche.  I will definitely pick up another book by them when I need to read a good contemporary. 

I gave this book 4 crowns. 

I received an E-ARC of this book from the Publishers through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

Some Boys by: Patty Blount Nerd Blast

Tour Info:

http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2018/11/nerd-blast-some-boys-by-patty-blount.html

SYNOPSIS

Some boys go too far. Some boys will break your heart. But one boy can make you whole.

When Grace meets Ian she’s afraid. Afraid he’ll reject her like the rest of the school, like her own family. After she accuses the town golden boy of rape, everyone turns against Grace. They call her a slut and a liar. But…Ian doesn’t. He’s funny and kind with secrets of his own.

But how do you trust the best friend of the boy who raped you? How do you believe in love?

A gut-wrenching, powerful love story told from alternating points of view by the acclaimed author of Send.  

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORYPraise for SOME BOYS

“You will be satisfied at the end of this powerful work. ” ―RT Book Review

“A largely sensitive treatment of an emotionally complex topic. ” ―Kirkus

“Some Boys” belongs in every YA collection.” ―School Library Journal  

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Patty Blount grew up quiet and a bit invisible in Queens, NY, but found her voice in books. Today, she writes smart and strong characters willing to fight for what’s right. She’s the award-winning author of edgy, realistic, gut-wrenching contemporary and young adult romance. Still a bit introverted, she gets lost often, eats way too much chocolate, and tends to develop mad, passionate crushes on fictional characters. Let’s be real; Patty’s not nearly as cool as her characters, but she is a solid supporter of women’s rights and loves delivering school presentations. 

Patty is best known for her internet issues novels, including SOME BOYS, a 2015 CLMP Firecracker winner and SEND, a 2012 Junior Library Guild Fall Pick. Visit her website at pattyblount.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter. She blogs at YA Outside the Lines and is also active online. She loves hearing from readers, especially when they tell her she’s cool (even though she knows it’s not true), and is easily bribed with chocolate. Never underestimate the power of chocolate.

PHOTO CREDIT: DAN DEMERIAD 
WEBSITE: https://www.pattyblount.com/
TWITTER:  @PattyBlount
GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5344531.Patty_Blount
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/PattyBlountNovels
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/pattyblount3/

Giveaway Info:


Giveaway is open Internationally | Must be 13+ to Enter

– Winner will receive a Signed Copy of SOMEONE I USED TO KNOW (+Swags) by Patty Blount


ENDS: DECEMBER 19, 2018

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e849f7751523/

BOOK TRAILER
LINK:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-agmuvUOOAI

Excerpt:

SOME BOYS BY PATTY BLOUNT EXCERPT

Minutes pass, but they feel like centuries. I fumble for my phone—my mom’s phone since she made me switch with her—and call her.

“Grace, what’s wrong?”
“Can’t breathe, Mom. Hurts,” I push out the words on gasps of air. “Okay, honey, I want you to take a breath and hold it. One, two,

three, and let it out.”
I follow her instructions, surprised I have any breath in my lungs to

hold for three seconds. The next breath is easier.
“Keep going. Deep breath, hold it, let it out.”
It takes me a few tries, but finally I can breathe without the

barrier. “Oh, God.” “Better?”

“Yeah. It doesn’t hurt now.” “Want me to take you home?”

Oh, home. Where there are no laughing classmates pointing at me, whispering behind their hands. Where there are no ex-friends calling me a bitch or a liar. Where I could curl up, throw a blanket over my head, and pretend nothing happened. Yes, take me home. Take me home right now as fast as you can.

I want to say that. But when I glance in the mirror over the row of sinks, something makes me say, “No. I have to stay.”

“Grace—”
“Mom, I have to stay.”
There’s a loud sigh. “Oh, honey. You don’t have to be brave.”Brave.
The word hangs in the air for a moment and then falls away, almost

like even it knows it has no business being used to describe me. I’m not brave. I’m scared. I’m so freakin’ scared. I can’t see straight, and I can’t see straight because I’m too scared to look very far. I’m a train wreck. All I’m doing is trying to hold on to what I have left. Only I’m not sure what that is. When I say nothing, she laughs too loudly. “Well, you’re wearing your father’s favorite outfit, so just pretend it’s a superhero costume.”

That makes me laugh. I glance down at my favorite boots—black leather covered in metal studs. My ass-kicking boots. Ever since Dad married Kristie, Mom lets me get away with anything that pisses him off, and wow does he hate how I dress.

“Why don’t you go to the library until the bell rings? Relax and regroup, you know?”

Regroup. Sure. Okay. “Yeah. I’ll do that.”

“If you need me to get you, I’ll come. Okay?”
I meet my own gaze in the mirror, disgusted to see them fill with tears. Jeez, you’d think I’d be empty by now. “Thanks, Mom.” I end the call, tuck the phone in my pocket, and head for the library.

The library is my favorite spot in the whole school. Two floors of books, rows of computers, soft chairs to slouch in. I head for the nonfiction section and find the 770s. This is where the photography books live—my stack. I run a finger along the spines and find the first book I ever opened on the subject—A History of Photography.

I pull the book off its shelf, curl up with it in a chair near a window, and flip open the back cover. My signature is scrawled on the checkout card so many times now that we’re old friends. I know how this book smells—a little like cut grass. How it feels—the pages are thick and glossy. And even where every one of its scars lives—the coffee ring on page 213 and the dog-eared corner in chapter 11. This is the book that said, “Grace, you are a photographer.”

I flip through the pages, reread the section on high-key tech- nique—I love how that sounds. High-key. So professional. It’s really just great big fields of bright white filled with a splash of color or some- times only shadow. I took hundreds of pictures this way—of Miranda, of Lindsay, of me. I practiced adjusting aperture settings and shutter speeds and overexposing backgrounds. It’s cool how even the simplest subjects look calm and cheerful. It’s like the extra light forces us to see the beauty and the flaws we never noticed.

I unzip my backpack and take out the school’s digital camera. It’s assigned to me—official student newspaper photographer. I scroll through the images stored on the card—selfies I shot over the last few months. Why can’t everybody see what I see? My eyes don’t sparkle. My lips don’t curve anymore. Why don’t they see?

With a sigh, I close the book, and a slip of paper floats to the floor. I pick it up, unfold it, and my stomach twists when I read the words printed on it. A noise startles me, and I look up to see Tyler Embery standing at one of the computers. Did he slip this paper into my favorite book? He’s had a painfully obvious crush on me forever. Every time he gets within five feet of me, his face flushes, and sweat beads at his hairline. Tyler volunteers at the library during his free periods and always flags me over to give me the latest issue of Shutterbug that he sets aside for me as soon as it arrives. He grabs something off the desk and walks over to me. I smile, thankful there’s still one person left in this world that doesn’t think Zac McMahon is the second coming of Christ. But Tyler’s not holding a magazine. He’s holding his phone.

“Six-eighty-three.” There’s no blush, no sweat—only disgust.

I make it to the end of the day. At dismissal I make damn sure I’m early for the bus ride home so I can snag an empty row. I plug in my earbuds to drown out the taunts. It’s not so bad, I tell myself repeat- edly, the taste of tears at the back of my throat familiar now. I don’t believe me.

Once safely back in my house, I let my shoulders sag and take my first easy breath of the day. The house is empty and eerie, and I wonder how to fill the hours until Mom gets home. Thirty-two days ago I’d be hanging out after school with Miranda and Lindsay or shopping at the mall or trying to find the perfect action photo at one of the games. In my room I stare at the mirror over my dresser, where dozens of photos are taped— photos of me with my friends, me with my dad, me at dance class. I’m not welcome at any of these places, by any of these people anymore. I don’t have a damn thing because Zac McMahon took it all. I think about Mom killing all of my online accounts and switching phones just until things settle. But now that the video of me that Zac posted on Facebook has 683 Likes, it’s pretty clear that waiting for things to settle is a fantasy.

I rip all the pictures off the mirror, tear them into tiny pieces, and swipe them into the trash bin next to my desk. Then I pull out the slip of paper I found in the photography book, and after a few minutes of staring at it, I dial the number with shaking hands.

“Rape Crisis Hotline, this is Diane. Let me help you.”

Copyright © 2014 by PattyBlount

Literary Book Gifts – A Shop Review & Discount for my readers

Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday, and I thought, what better way to support these small businesses, then to tell you about one I came across recently.  

Website- Literary Book Gifts

www.literarybookgifts.com

If you take a glance at this simply designed webpage, you will notice the simplicity of the page itself as well as the products offered.  Each item has either an author or a book title in its’ classic form, printed on it.  

The t-shirts sytles are available for either Men or Women and appear to be made on very soft t-shirts.  The tote bags look sturdy, have longer handles for convenience and come in 3 different sizes!

  If you know a book lover or are one and would like to share the joy of books with others for the Holiday season, then consider supporting a small business and check out Literary Book Gifts.  

Discount Code

Just for my readers, I am able to offer you a discount of 20% your purchase of anything in the store with no minimum required, and it never expires.  Just type in: BookQueenReviews20 when asked for a discount code at checkout.

Night of Miracles by: Elizabeth Berg

Night of Miracles

Description from the publisher through Netgalley

The feel-good book of the year: a delightful novel of friendship, community, and the way small acts of kindness can change your life, by the bestselling author of The Story of Arthur Truluv

Lucille Howard is getting on in years, but she stays busy. Thanks to the inspiration of her dearly departed friend Arthur Truluv, she has begun to teach baking classes, sharing the secrets to her delicious classic Southern yellow cake, the perfect pinwheel cookies, and other sweet essentials. Her classes have become so popular that she’s hired Iris, a new resident of Mason, Missouri, as an assistant. Iris doesn’t know how to bake but she needs to keep her mind off a big decision she sorely regrets.

When a new family moves in next door and tragedy strikes, Lucille begins to look out for Lincoln, their son. Lincoln’s parents aren’t the only ones in town facing hard choices and uncertain futures. In these difficult times, the residents of Mason come together and find the true power of community—just when they need it the most.

“Elizabeth Berg’s characters jump right off the page and into your heart” said Fannie Flagg about The Story of Arthur Truluv. The same could be said about Night of Miracles, a heartwarming novel that reminds us that the people we come to love are often the ones we don’t expect.

My Review

If you read my review of The Story of Arthur Truluv, then you know that I loved that story.  I was so excited to see that this was a companion novel to that beautiful story.  I jumped in expecting it to continue with the story of Maddy but this story was a bit different.  It took me a little bit of time to get into, but once I did, I was all in.  

I love Elizabeth Berg’s writing style and her stories are so atmospheric and touching that I can’t complain about any of them.  This story grabs hold of your heart and does not let it go even long after you are done reading the story.  

I gave this book 4 crowns. 

I received this E-Arc from the publishers through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.