Sunday, May 1, 2016

Monthly Wrap Up: April


Monthly Wrap-Up - I know it says weekly but that was too hard to keep up with so I am changing it to monthly 

Jenn's Books Read/listened:

Wandering WildScarlett Epstein Hates It HereBurning MidnightThe Great GatsbyTarzan of the Apes (Tarzan, #1)Dead Until Dark (Sookie Stackhouse, #1)My Life as a White Trash Zombie (White Trash Zombie, #1)The May Queen MurdersScarlet (Scarlet, #1)Don't Eat The Glowing BananasMy Kind of CrazyWink Poppy MidnightThe Glittering Court (The Glittering Court, #1)The Walking Dead, Vol. 04: The Heart's DesireThanks for the TroubleIt Wasn't Always Like ThisThe Rules for Disappearing (The Rules for Disappearing, #1)Broken Dolls (Broken Dolls, #1)

Jenn's Reviews: 

Jenn's Books I acquired for review: Lots of contemporary and mystery/thrillers. 

How to DisappearThe Marked Girl (Marked Girl, #1)This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity, #1)And I Darken (Conqueror's Saga, #1)Life BeforeWhat the Dead WantEver the Hunted (Clash of Kingdoms, #1)We Know It Was You (Strange Truth, #1)Unplugged (The Wired, #1)Spare and Found PartsThe TellingThe Geek's Guide to Unrequited Love

Jenn 's Other News:

Just a bit more to go until we leave for BEA. I am so super excited. It's really hard to focus on anything right now. I want to plan and plan and plan... one problem. I am so over my head. How do you plan for something you know nothing about. We have our luggage. We have our favorites marked on the app, our business cards are ordered.  And that is it. No clothes picked, no idea what to budget, no clue about any other details. 

One think I would love is if you are going and you want to exchange info and meet up. Let me know. I can email you with my number. I am really excited about meeting you guys. I am also signed up for the blogger dinner. I did so at Read Sleep Repeat. I am so super excited guys. 

WE found some great Chai Tea and some great Herbal tea. Ash loves the Chai Tea....well really she loves both. I have been trying to drink more tea lately than coffee or diet drinks. Trying to get healthy and natural. The tea has been a good thing. Mostly I do cold tea all day. Just cold water and a tea bag and I am good. I also like lemon, lime, or orange oils in my water. yum. 

We have game night, well we try to have game night, once a week at our brother's coffee shop. Gives me a chance to buy a new game. This month I bought Codenames. Ash picked it out. It was a lot of fun. We spent the entire night playing it. If you like to play board games check it out. 

Life.I feel like I can't keep up with everything. I work, I go to the gym, I come home to watch 2 year old grandson, dinner, then I might get some time to read before bed. Mostly I get my reading done on audio during work. Thank goodness for audio. Its hard for me to keep up on life, blogging, and reading. I don't know how some of you guys keep it up. I always feel like I am not commenting enough, responding enough, blogging enough, reviewing enough, and reading enough. Finding balance is trick and I am figuring some of it out but it is hard. I want to get to know all you guys better and be more of a participant... so bear with me. I am trying. I am a bit of an introvert and very busy so it's not natural for me. 

So that is my life right now. I hope all you guys are doing really well and hope to meet you at the BEA if you are going. 

Friday, April 29, 2016

Review: Wandering Wild by Jessica Taylor

Wandering WildTitle: Wandering Wild
Author:  Jessica Taylor
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Publishing Date: 
Pages: 368
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance/Coming of Age 
Series:  Stand Alone
Source:  ARC
Raised by Wanderers, sixteen-year-old Tal travels the roads of the southern wild in her Chevy by day and camps in her tent trailer at night. Hustling, conning, and grifting her way into just enough cash to save her fifteen-year-old brother, Wen, from bare-knuckle fighting was once enough to keep her dreams of traveling the whole world at bay. Everything changes when the Wanderers set up camp in a little town called Cedar Falls.

There, Spencer Sway, a boy Tal tried to hustle at a game of billiards, keeps popping up into her life—and worst of all—into her scams. Buttoned-up, starched-and-ironed Spencer talks of places where Tal’s truck can’t take her. His promises of traveling across oceans are almost enough to shatter her love of the Wanderer life.

When a boy shows up at camp, ready to make good on a nearly-forgotten arranged marriage to Tal, Tal and Wen make a pact: No matter the cost, they will use their limitless skills of grift to earn the bride price and buy back her future—even if Spencer Sway gets used along the way.

I love this cover. I don't know what it is about it but I love it. So that is what first attracted me to this book. The second thing... the synopsis. Gypsies, love, con artists, scams, yup sounded like an interesting book. New story too. I am always up for something fresh and new. I really really enjoyed this book. It was a pleasant little surprise, a hidden gem.  

Tal is a gypsy, a wanderer. Her and her brother travel with a caravan from place to place, conning people for money. This is their life and have been since they were born. They lost their mother and their father, they only have each other... well and the other gypsies. The problem is Tal is promised, bought, by another Gypsy group. To be married off. Shes does not want this  life and sets off to earn some money to pay her bride price, her freedom. A little glitch in the plan she falls in love. Her life changes, the meaning of it, the future, everything. She needs to figure out if life wandering is the life for her. 

This book really got me invested from the very beginning. I really liked the voice of Tal and could tell right away I would connect with her. She was wild, independent, street smart, wise, mature for age. She seemed to have it together, as much as she could with the life she has lived. I connected with her and I felt her. I liked her. 

Her brother, Wen, I liked too. Just really liked all the characters and what they had to offer to the story. Wen was a cool and chilled and really wanted to look after and protect Tal, even though he was younger. Spencer, the love interest was awesome. I think he was really understanding, sweet, and a truly good guy. 

The romance was sweet, a little fast but I think with Tal, it was expected. She has never really fell in love and when she meets her match and he is a knight in shining just happened. I liked the way the romance felt and the direction it was headed. It wasn't perfect and little cliche.... broken girl sweet boy but not without his issues. They meet and save each other. Yup that is it,but I still really much enjoyed it. Made me smile on many occasions. 

The struggles in the book felt real even though it was a world I know nothing about but I can how this world would be like the one described in this book. A band of modern day outlaws. There were arranged marriages, bride prices, king boss, alpha omega type thing. It was interesting and exciting without being over done. 

The ending was good. It wasn't full resolution, but enough to end the book on a happy note. It would be awesome to have a companion novel that also shows the progress of the main characters of this book. I would love to visit this world again. 

The book was well paced, written well. It had developed characters, an interesting story line, and a cute romance. 

A good read, very enjoyable. Great for those who love cute romances with a bit of seriousness and trouble. 

Jessica  Taylor

My debut, Wandering Wild, a young adult magical realism novel, launches May 3, 2016 from Sky Pony Press. My first contemporary young adult novel, A Map for Lost Girls, is coming from Dial Books for Young Readers/Penguin in 2018. Represented by Melissa Sarver White at Folio Literary Management.
I adore sleepy southern settings, unrequited love, and characters who sneak out late at night. After graduating from law school, I realized I'd rather write my own stories than read dusty law books. I live in Northern California with a sweet-yet-spoiled dog and several teetering towers of books.

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