Contemporary

[Review] Winger – Andrew Smith

Winger (Winger, #1)

Author: Andrew Smith

Series: Winger #1

Publication Date: May 14th, 2013

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Number of Pages: 439

Genre: Contemporary, YA

Source: Public library

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

Ryan Dean West is a fourteen-year-old junior at a boarding school for rich kids in the Pacific Northwest. He’s living in Opportunity Hall, the dorm for troublemakers, and rooming with the biggest bully on the rugby team. And he’s madly in love with his best friend Annie, who thinks of him as a little boy.

With the help of his sense of humor, rugby buddies, and his penchant for doodling comics, Ryan Dean manages to survive life’s complications and even find some happiness along the way. But when the unthinkable happens, he has to figure out how to hold on to what’s important, even when it feels like everything has fallen apart.

Filled with hand-drawn info-graphics and illustrations and told in a pitch-perfect voice, this realistic depiction of a teen’s experience strikes an exceptional balance of hilarious and heartbreaking.

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[ARC Review] Denton Little’s Deathdate – Lance Rubin

Denton Little's Deathdate

Author: Lance Rubin

Series: Denton Little’s Deathdate #1

Publication Date: April 14th, 2015

Publisher: Knopf Books For Young Readers

Number of Pages: 352

Genre: YA, Contemporary, Sci-fi

Source: Netgalley

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

Fans of John Green and Matthew Quick: Get ready to die laughing.

Denton Little’s Deathdate takes place in a world exactly like our own except that everyone knows the day they will die. For 17-year-old Denton Little, that’s tomorrow, the day of his senior prom.

Despite his early deathdate, Denton has always wanted to live a normal life, but his final days are filled with dramatic firsts. First hangover. First sex. First love triangle (as the first sex seems to have happened not with his adoring girlfriend, but with his best friend’s hostile sister. Though he’s not totally sure. See: first hangover.) His anxiety builds when he discovers a strange purple rash making its way up his body. Is this what will kill him? And then a strange man shows up at his funeral, claiming to have known Denton’s long-deceased mother, and warning him to beware of suspicious government characters…. Suddenly Denton’s life is filled with mysterious questions and precious little time to find the answers.

Debut author Lance Rubin takes us on a fast, furious, and outrageously funny ride through the last hours of a teenager’s life as he searches for love, meaning, answers, and (just maybe) a way to live on. (more…)

[Preview Review] Saint Anything – Sarah Dessen

SNEAK PEEK: Saint Anything

Author: Sarah Dessen

Series: None

Publication Date: May 5th, 2015

Publisher: Viking Juvenile

Number of Pages: Sample – 35; Book – 448

Genre: Contemporary, YA, Romance

Source: Netgalley

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

Peyton, Sydney’s charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton’s increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?

Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.

The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.

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[Review] Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

Gone Girl

Author: Gillian Flynn

Series: None

Publication Date: June 5th, 2012

Publisher: Crown Publishers

Number of Pages: 415

Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Mystery, Thriller, Romance

Source: School library

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media–as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents–the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter–but is he really a killer?

As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?

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[Review] Speak – Laurie Halse Anderson

Speak

Author: Laurie Halse Anderson

Series: None

Publication Date: October 22nd, 1999

Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux

Number of Pages: 197

Source: Public library

Genre: Contemporary, YA

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

Melinda Sordino busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops. Now her old friends won’t talk to her, and people she doesn’t even know hate her from a distance. The safest place to be is alone, inside her own head. But even that’s not safe. Because there’s something she’s trying not to think about, something about the night of the party that, if she let it in, would blow her carefully constructed disguise to smithereens. And then she would have to speak the truth. This extraordinary first novel has captured the imaginations of teenagers and adults across the country.

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[Review] Hate List – Jennifer Brown

Hate List

Author: Jennifer Brown

Series: None

Publication Date: September 1st, 2009

Publisher: Little Brown Books

Number of Pages: 405

Genre: YA, Contemporary,

Source: School library

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

Five months ago, Valerie Leftman’s boyfriend, Nick, opened fire on their school cafeteria. Shot trying to stop him, Valerie inadvertently saved the life of a classmate, but was implicated in the shootings because of the list she helped create. A list of people and things she and Nick hated. The list he used to pick his targets.

Now, after a summer of seclusion, Val is forced to confront her guilt as she returns to school to complete her senior year. Haunted by the memory of the boyfriend she still loves and navigating rocky relationships with her family, former friends and the girl whose life she saved, Val must come to grips with the tragedy that took place and her role in it, in order to make amends and move on with her life.

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[ARC Review] One of the Guys – Lisa Aldin

One of the Guys

Author: Lisa Aldin

Series: None

Publication Date: February 10th, 2015

Publisher: Spencer Hill Press

Number of Pages: 320

Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance

Source: Netgalley

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

Tomboy to the core, Toni Valentine understands guys. She’ll take horror movies, monster hunts and burping contests over manicures. So Toni is horrified when she’s sent to the Winston Academy for Girls, where she has to wear a skirt and learn to be a lady while the guys move on without her.

Then Toni meets Emma Elizabeth, a girl at school with boy troubles, and she volunteers one of her friends as a pretend date. Word spreads of Toni’s connections with boys, and she discovers that her new wealthy female classmates will pay big money for fake dates. Looking for a way to connect her old best friends with her new life at school, Toni and Emma start up Toni Valentine’s Rent-A-Gent Service.

But the business meets a scandal when Toni falls for one of her friends–the same guy who happens to be the most sought-after date. With everything she’s built on the line, Toni has to decide if she wants to save the business and her old life, or let go of being one of the guys for a chance at love.

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[Review] To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before – Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #1)

Author: Jenny Han

Series: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #1

Publication Date: April 15th, 2014

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers  

Number of Pages: 288

Genre: Contemporary, Romance

Source: Public library

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Summary

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is the story of Lara Jean, who has never openly admitted her crushes, but instead wrote each boy a letter about how she felt, sealed it, and hid it in a box under her bed. But one day Lara Jean discovers that somehow her secret box of letters has been mailed, causing all her crushes from her past to confront her about the letters: her first kiss, the boy from summer camp, even her sister’s ex-boyfriend, Josh. As she learns to deal with her past loves face to face, Lara Jean discovers that something good may come out of these letters after all.

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[ARC Review] Since You’ve Been Gone – Mary Jennifer Payne

Since You've Been Gone

Author: Mary Jennifer Payne

Series: None

Expected Publication Date: February 17th, 2015

Publisher: Dundurn Group

Number of Pages: 224

Source: Netgalley

Genre: Contemporary, YA

Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


 Summary

Is it possible to outrun your past? Fifteen-year-old Edie Fraser and her mother, Sydney, have been trying to do just that for five years. Now, things have gone from bad to worse. Not only has Edie had to move to another new school she’s in a different country.
Sydney promises her that this is their chance at a fresh start, and Edie does her best to adjust to life in London, England, despite being targeted by the school bully. But when Sydney goes out to work the night shift and doesn’t come home, Edie is terrified that the past has finally caught up with them.
Alone in a strange country, Edie is afraid to call the police for fear that she ll be sent back to her abusive father. Determined to find her mother, but with no idea where to start, she must now face the most difficult decision of her life.”

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