Saturday, 18 August 2018

{Review} Top Ten by Katie Cotungo

33799302Posted by Donna
Release Date: October 3rd, 2017 
Finished Date: August 15th, 2018
Publishers: Balzer + Bray
Genre: Contemporary, Romance 
Source: For Review
Format: eARC 
Pages: 320
Buy: Amazon UK Amazon US / The Book Depo 
 
Ryan McCullough and Gabby Hart are the unlikeliest of friends. Introverted, anxious Gabby would rather do literally anything than go to a party. Ryan is a star hockey player who can get any girl he wants—and does, frequently. But against all odds, they became not only friends, but each other’s favorite person. Now, as they face high school graduation, they can’t help but take a moment to reminisce and, in their signature tradition, make a top ten list—counting down the top ten moments of their friendship: 

10. Where to begin? Maybe the night we met.
9. Then there was our awkward phase.
8. When you were in love with me but never told me…
7. Those five months we stopped talking were the hardest of my life.
6. Through terrible fights…
5. And emotional makeups.
4. You were there for me when I got my heart broken.
3. …but at times, you were also the one breaking it.
2. Above all, you helped me make sense of the world.
1. Now, as we head off to college—how am I possibly going to live without you?

The Review: I was excited to start Top Ten by Katie Contungo because I’ve read a couple of the author’s other books and have always come away happy. This is no different from Top Ten, I enjoyed it but I definitely thought it could have been better.

Best friends Gabby and Ryan have always had a connection. Their friendship has never made sense to either of them because they are the complete opposite. Ryan is a popular Hockey player and Gabby keeps to herself because of her social anxiety. When one night their friendship changes into something more, this story tells us their story from becoming friends to everything that happens in between being told through their top favourite moments of their friendship. 

I really liked the idea of the story being told through the character’s top ten moments. It was definitely interesting but I have to say it was slightly confusing because the story jumps from different moments in the past in no particular order. So one moment could be from Junior year, while the next could be Sophomore year or Freshman year. It was honestly a little hard to keep track of the story this way. For me I felt like the story would have worked better had they had alternative chapters from past to present. Because in all honestly, it was the present story I was more interested in. 

I liked both characters, Ryan more so than Gabby who struggled with several issues and refused to do anything about it all the while putting pressure on Ryan to deal with his own issues. There was some really sweet moments through the story but also some moments that really made you connect to the characters. 

The ending, really? Can I even say it was an ending? I hate open endings and unfortunately Top Ten provides no conclusion to what actually happens to the characters – did they get together? Did they remain friends? I guess it’s down to each person to decide but after spending the last 320 pages reading about these characters I was really disappointed by this ending. There isn’t even an epilogue. 

Thank you to Balzer + Bray for giving me the opportunity to review this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Saturday, 11 August 2018

{Review} Fire in You (Wait for You #6) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

32613692Posted by Donna
Release Date: November 28th, 2016 
Finished Date: August 12, 2017
Publishers: Hodder & Stoughton 
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Source: For Review
Format: Paperback
Pages: 392
Buy: Amazon UK Amazon US / The Book Depo 
 
From the # 1 New York Times bestselling author of Wait for You and Be With Me, comes a richly moving story about heartbreak and guilt, second chances and, most of all, hope...

Six years ago, Jillian Lima's whole world was destroyed. The same night her childhood love Brock Mitchell broke her heart, her life was irrevocably altered by a stranger with a gun. After years spent slowly rebuilding the shattered pieces of her life, Jillian is finally ready to stop existing in a past full of pain and regret and is determined to start living. The one thing she never expected was the impossibly handsome Brock walking back into her life...

Brock can't believe that the breath-taking woman standing before him now is the little girl who used to be his shadow growing up. Unable to stay away from each other, their tentative friendship soon sparks into something more and the red-hot chemistry sizzling between them can no longer be denied.

But falling for Brock again risks more than just Jillian's heart. When the past resurfaces, and a web of lies threatens to rip them apart, the fallout could lay waste to everything they've ever cared about...

The Review: Being one of Jennifer L. Armentrout’s biggest fans I just knew I had to finish reading her Wait for You series because as much as I didn’t want to say goodbye to these characters, I still wanted to see how all their stories ended.


Like all the previous books in the series, Fire in You features a different couple Jillian and Brock. These books can be read as standalone but because all of the characters’ lives intertwine I would highly recommend reading them in order.

Jillian and Brock’s story was a great way to end this series. Their story not only has struggles in their present story but it also has struggles from their past which makes this a very suspenseful read. I’ve always had a soft spot for stories where the character already know each another and Jillian and Brock’s story didn’t disappoint. Their story is a little heart-breaking because Brock feeling obligated to Jillian’s father for taking him in when he was a teenager felt like he could never be with Jillian. He broke her heart to protect her. But with Jillian struggling with her life changing trauma where she believes that Brock let her down in a serious way and the events of that night kind of leave Jillian broken, it’s only Brock that can help her overcome these struggles even though she really is trying on her own.

I loved these two character. I loved reading their back story and seeing what the present and future held for them. They were great characters to get to know and even with their struggles their story was very addictive. As a reader I could definitely relate to Jillian who loves reading books as much as I do so it was really nice to connect with her that way.

And of course all the other characters popping up through the story it definitely was a great way to end this series. Jennifer L. Armentrout really is a fantastic writer and I really need to get myself up to date with all of her other books. 

Thank you to Hodder & Stoughton for giving me the opportunity to review this book in exchange for an honest review.