BOOK REVIEW: AFTER MATH BY DENISE GROVER SWANK



Scarlett Goodwin’s world is divided into Before and After.

Before she agreed to tutor Tucker price, college junior Scarlett was introvert, struggling with her social anxiety and determined to not end up living in a trailer park like her mother and her younger sister. A mathematics major, she goes to her classes, to her job in the tutoring lab, and then hides in the apartment she shares with her friend, Caroline.

After junior Tucker Price, Southern University’s star soccer player enters the equation, her carefully plotted life is thrown off its axis. Tucker’s failing his required College Algebra class. With his eligibility is at risk, the university chancellor dangles an expensive piece of computer software for the math department if Scarlett agrees to privately tutor him.Tucker’s bad boy, womanizer reputation makes Scarlett wary of any contact, let alone spending several hours a week in close proximity.

But from her first encounter, she realizes Tucker isn’t the person everyone else sees. He carries a mountain of secrets which she suspects hold the reason to his self-destructive behavior. But the deeper she delves into the cause of his pain, the deeper she gets sucked into his chaos. Will Scarlett find the happiness she’s looking for, or will she be caught in Tucker’s aftermath?




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SUMMERTIME MADNESS BOOK TAG

The summer isn't over yet! There's just enough time left for us to cram those final few summery reads into our TBRs. In fact, there's even enough time left to head to that perfect summer destination and reenact your favorite book (or do your best trying). But for those of us who have jobs and school looming closer every day, the summer is drawing to a rapid close. All that's left to do now is seek escapism in books. And do summery tags. This tag (created by JackEatsBooks on YouTube) might just be the perfect one. And without further ado, we are picking our summer-reminiscent reads.



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BOOK REVIEW: THE DREAM THIEVES BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER




Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same. 


Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life. 

Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after...






This book has been 439 pages of "How does she do it?". The character growth, how does she do it? The plot development, how does she do it? The beautiful writing style, how does she do it? An array of subplots all coming together in the end, how does she do it? Anything and everything about The Raven Cycle is making me question anything and everything I thought I knew about writing, reviewing and even the simple act of enjoying books as a reader. The film keeps rewinding, I keep struggling to remember when it was that I was as awed by a book as deeply as I am by The Raven Cycle ones, and... I can hardly come up with any. All that I have accomplished is I've managed to deconstruct the inner workings of how a book becomes a favorite. But I still can't help but wonder...

How does she do it?

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TOP 10 AUTHORS WE SHOULD BE READING

We know what you're thinking: this week we're about to recommend you ten of our most favorite authors in the world. We're going to rhapsodize about J.K. Rowling's plotting, Suzanne Collins's worldbuilding and Tahereh Mafi's way with words. We're going to break out the good, old "if you haven't read this yet, where have you been" (which is about as encouraging to a new reader as being hit with said book upside the head).

If this was your assumption, we have good news for you.

This week's top 10 Monday is dedicated to our own proverbial smack upside the head with a good book. In an effort to quit including "Harry Potter" in every single top 10 list we've ever made, this week we've decided to break away from the routine. The ten authors featured below are distinguished not because you should be reading them, but because we feel like we should be reading them. These are the authors whose praise has reached and intrigued us, but we haven't yet had a chance to pick up any of their books. Consider this list gratituous, therefore, in the sense that this is as much for our own benefit as it is for our readers'. Consider this list encouraging, too. If you're new to any of the bandwagons/fandoms/whachamacallits featured below, here on TheHonestBookclub you'll find two other newbies eager to discover them with you.

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IN MY MAILBOX: AUGUST 22ND


I have a secret admirer, I have a secret admirer! And he's sending me books! (Does a secret admirer get any more dreamy than when they send you books instead of flowers? It's almost as if they knew me!

And it's almost as if I knew them. Especially when they tell me about the imminent arrival of a parcel with books months in advance. (Hi, Dennis! ♥ )


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BOOK REVIEW: LOST & FOUND (EMI LOST & FOUND #1) BY LORI L. OTTO


Emi Lost & Found series - Winner of the Best Happily Ever After of 2013 - HEA Bookshelf 

There was true depth to the story and the characters that moved me and emotionally gutted me. I was so taken by Nate and Emi’s love for each other. It’s the kind of love that few have and many desire but never get to experience.” - Megan, Reading Books Like a Boss 

Independent and sensitive, idealistic and hopeful, Emi Hennigan lives her life with optimism and an open mind. Between sharing a tiny Manhattan apartment with her fun-loving roommate and spending most of her free time with her heart-breaker friend, Emi’s seen enough failed relationships to know what to avoid in her quest to find her true love. Not only that, but a single moment from her past lingers in her mind, setting high expectations for every man she dates. 

Emi’s best friend, artist and hopeless romantic Nate Wilson, has been her closest companion all of their adult lives. After swearing off love with Emi in a silly high school pact, Nate has been seeing other women in hopes of finding one that evokes stronger feelings than the ones he’s been harboring for Emi since he was a teen. Over the span of a year, boundaries are crossed, feelings are confessed, and their unique friendship begins to blossom into something more. 

Through Nate’s eyes, an atypical romance unfolds, disrupting the comfortable safe haven their friendship has provided. With a promising future ahead of them both, fate intervenes to bring two soul mates together. 


review contains spoilers!!

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BOOK REVIEW: THE RAVEN BOYS BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER



“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.





Sometimes books keep us company and teach us how to be alone. Sometimes they take us elsewhere, and tell us stories as they do. At times they annihilate long stretches of time, compress boredom into nothingness and convey the lessons we never thought to seek.

And every once in awhile, we come across those books that do more than alleviate boredom and keep us company. We come across the books that evoke the memories we thought we lost and the feelings we never knew we had. So they go deeper than skin-deep, with words that leave an imprint in our souls and with scenes that stay with us even when those books aren't immediately before us. I don't mean to be poetic, really, there's just no other way to put it. This was one of those books for me.

No spoilers ahead.

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BOOK REVIEW: UGLY LOVE BY COLLEEN HOOVER



An unforgettable love story that breaks all the rules.

When Tate Collins finds airline pilot Miles Archer passed out in front of her apartment door, it is definitely not love at first sight. In fact, they wouldn't even consider themselves friends. But what they do have is an undeniable mutual attraction.

He doesn't want love and she doesn't have time for a relationship, but their chemistry cannot be ignored. Once their desires are out in the open, they realise they have the perfect set-up, as long as Tate can stick to two rules - never ask about the past and don't expect a future.

Tate convinces herslelf she's ok with it, but soon realises that it's harder than she thought. Will she be able to say no to her sexy pilot when he lives just next door?


Contains spoilers - if you've not read it yet, I wouldn't recommend reading just yet!

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BOOK REVIEW: ANGELFALL BY SUSAN EE

 Angelfall on Goodreads

It's been six weeks since angels of the apocalypse descended to demolish the modern world. Street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night. When warrior angels fly away with a helpless little girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back.

Anything, including making a deal with an enemy angel.

Raffe is a warrior who lies broken and wingless on the street. After eons of fighting his own battles, he finds himself being rescued from a desperate situation by a half-starved teenage girl.

Traveling through a dark and twisted Northern California, they have only each other to rely on for survival. Together, they journey toward the angels' stronghold in San Francisco where she'll risk everything to rescue her sister and he'll put himself at the mercy of his greatest enemies for the chance to be made whole again.




Look no further for an excellent angel book.

The concept of fallen angels in YA literature has been thoroughly canvassed and even more thoroughly visited and revisited in recent years. As with most contemporary genres, trends will come and trends will go, and the fallen angel trend is going, if popular opinion is to be believed. If you're among those who:
a) have managed not to come across too many fallen angel novels, but wish to do so in the future;
b) enjoy the concept of fallen angels enough to not care whether it's overused;
c) like being a hipster and always going against the grain (so now when we're supposed to scorn fallen angel books, you're determined to enjoy them),
then Angelfall is just the book.

No spoilers ahead.
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BOOK REVIEW: OPPOSITION BY JENNIFER L. ARMENTROUT

 Opposition on Goodreads

Katy knows the world changed the night the Luxen came.

She can't believe Daemon welcomed his race or stood by as his kind threatened to obliterate every last human and hybrid on Earth. But the lines between good and bad have blurred, and love has become an emotion that could destroy her — could destroy them all.

Daemon will do anything to save those he loves, even if it means betrayal.

They must team with an unlikely enemy if there is any chance of surviving the invasion. But when it quickly becomes impossible to tell friend from foe, and the world is crumbling around them, they may lose everything — even what they cherish most — to ensure the survival of their friends… and mankind.

War has come to Earth. And no matter the outcome, the future will never be the same for those left standing.





"The blog was a big deal to me. It wasn't just pretending everything was fine or grasping at normalcy, but grabbing it by the ears and making it my bitch. Blogging about books was something I'd loved to do and missed fiercely. Books were a part of me."

And so ends the story of Katy, alien mutant and book blogger extraordinaire, and one of the most relatable protagonists to grace the pages of Young Adult literature in recent years. Katy's journey from gardener-and-book-blogger to a-force-to-be-reckoned-with was our journey. Her geeky ways were our geeky ways and her many struggles were our many struggles.

Why, oh why did it have to end?

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NEW BOOK ALERT: 2 MORE NOVELS + 2 MORE NOVELLAS IN "THE SELECTION" SERIES

Talk about a royal surprise! (Pun absolutely intended.)

Kiera Cass, author of the widely known The Selection series, has taken to Twitter earlier today to announce that the series isn't quite as over as we expected it to be when we said our final goodbyes in April.

The Selection was originally intended to be a dystopian trilogy. The story is centered around America Singer, one of the 36 contestants in a reality-TV-style competition to win the hand of Prince Maxon in the futuristic country of IllĂ©a . The first book in the series was followed by the sequel, The Elite, and the final installment, The One, came out in April of this year...

... or so we thought.

According to Kiera Cass herself, there is more to come!

Apart from the two novellas, The Prince and The Guard, which are already out, two more are officially on their way to being released. The first, aptly titled The Queen, will focus on Prince Maxon's mother, Queen Amberly. It is due to be released on December 2nd, 2014, and the first three chapters are available for free on unlockmoreselection.com. The fourth novella will concern Marlee, America's newfound best friend in the competition, and its title will be The Favorite. As was the case with The Prince and The Guard, the latter two novellas will also be available for purchase as a paperback bind-up in early 2015.

But the real king-sized surprise came with the announcement following the release dates for the novellas. Kiera Cass has officially announced that she intends to write two more full-sized novellas in The Selection series! The fourth book in what is no longer a trilogy will be called The Heir. According to the author, it will be written from a new perspective and the story will no longer be told from America Singer's point of view. With the title being what it is, our money is on the perspective being that of America and Maxon's child (presumably a male). Reportedly, the story will feature some of our well-known and beloved characters, and will also introduce some new ones along the way. The Heir has a tentative release date in the summer of 2015.

Watch Kiera Cass herself make the announcement in the video below.


Make that four more additions to our largely overflowing TBR lists. (No regrets!)




What about you? Have you read The Selection series or are you still considering jumping on the bandwagon? If so, this piece of news may be the perfect inducement. With The Heir still being well over half a year away, there is plenty of time to catch up. We have found The Selection books to be one-sitting sort of reads. And if you're already well-acquainted with the series, are you excited about the addition of two more full-length novels to the existing trilogy, or are you apprehensive? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below, or track us down on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to discuss.
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IN MY MAILBOX: AUGUST 14TH

It's so hard to be articulate right now.



My co-blogger Natalie and I have come to a realization that every single language (that we can speak) is deficient where the expressions of gratitude are concerned. There are just no words big or important enough to properly thank someone for a great act of kindness, and when you truly, truly mean it. Go ahead and try. No amount of thank yous, I'm so gratefuls or you're amazings can ever truly convey or articulately express the amount of gratitude we feel. Especially in print! Now, if you reach for the Caps Lock, add a lot of OH MY GODs and end it all with a few exclamation points, you're getting somewhere. It's still far from acurately depicting your gratitude, but it's closer.

The above is exactly what I did in the message I sent Natalie after I received four books from her this morning for exactly no reason at all. ♥ But we're putting on a show of professional bloggers here, so we try to keep the fangirling and the squeals to a minimum. Don't let that fool you, though. As any book blogger/lover/collector will tell you - squealing and fangirling is exactly what you do when you receive a large order of books. It's very undignified and not at all professional. It's the high-pitched equivalent of ugly crying. But there are few more blissful, more genuine emotions that money can buy. And this morning, mine was as fangirly as they come.

Behold the glory!

So this morning, an Amazon package alighted on my doorstep. It was considerably larger than I had expected. And the contents... my god, the contents.

Admit it: you'd squeal, too.


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GIVEAWAY - UGLY LOVE BY COLLEEN HOOVER


It's time. It's The Honest Bookclub's first giveaway and, boy, are we excited! 

We have an extra copy of the marvelous Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover, which was released earlier last week. If you haven't gotten yourself a copy yet, then you're in luck - you could win one right here at TheHonestBookclub. In the week and a half since its release, it hit the top 10 bestselling list on three major ebook platforms (Amazon, ibooks and Barnes&Noble). The book release also trended worldwide on Twitter. And as of yesterday, Ugly Love is #4 on the New York Times bestseller list. You know, no biggie. It's only The New York Times!

Where is our review, you ask? It's coming. Rather than to swallow the book like a book-to-review transmogrifying machine that we normally are, we have opted for savoring Ugly Love and taking our time to gather our impressions before putting the review out there in the world. Hey, even reviewers need a break from time to time. And what better author to savor than Colleen Hoover? (It's rhetorical question. There's no such author.)

The copy being given away is the UK edition (as shown in the picture below), so if you've already purchased the book and would love a different version of it - you've come to the right place.






When Tate Collins meets airline pilot Miles Archer, she knows it isn’t love at first sight. They wouldn’t even go so far as to consider themselves friends. The only thing Tate and Miles have in common is an undeniable mutual attraction. Once their desires are out in the open, they realize they have the perfect set-up. He doesn’t want love, she doesn’t have time for love, so that just leaves the sex. Their arrangement could be surprisingly seamless, as long as Tate can stick to the only two rules Miles has for her.

Never ask about the past.
Don’t expect a future.

They think they can handle it, but realize almost immediately they can’t handle it at all.

Hearts get infiltrated.

Promises get broken.

Rules get shattered.

Love gets ugly


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TOP 10 SETTINGS IN BOOKS


Let's shake off the Monday blues and get our book talk on! This week we're going to grab our passports and head abroad to our favorite settings in books. We've all read a book and sighed in sadness that we're not there. Authors have a way with words that make you feel like you're really there but you look up from your book. You're still at home. Bugger. But books are the next best thing. We've traveled to many places with these characters and we think now is a great time to share our favorite places! 


We're going to be honest here, most books are set in America. America has some incredibly beautiful places, but there's also some inspiriting and historical places worldwide. 

If you're not a traveler, then you know a road trip story isn't for you. But sometimes the experience is more than just seeing places, it's meeting the people. Tasting the food. Learning a new language. Discovering the history. Traveling is truly an incredible experience. When you go to new places and put yourself in a completely different setting, you find out more about yourself that you ever knew. You gain confidence, wisdom and smarts. You learn how to budget your money and how to take care of yourself, how to ask for help, and learn so much about different cultures. When you're reading a character doing all this, you do all this right along with them. You grow with them. The world can be a scary place, but it can also be full of so many wonders and such beauty, some very friendly people and delicious foods.
Sometimes travel also makes you appreciate where you live now. You may be sick and tired of your home town but when you're back from a long travel - boy, are you glad to be back. You'll miss home comforts and realize how lucky you can be. Some places can be hard to live in so being home again is a great thing.

So we're going to share our favorites - and don't forget to let us know which ones you liked too!



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BOOK REVIEW: AMY AND ROGER'S EPIC DETOUR BY MORGAN MATSON

 Amy & Roger's Epic Detour on Goodreads


Amy Curry is not looking forward to her summer. Her mother decided to move across the country and now it's Amy's responsibility to get their car from California to Connecticut. The only problem is, since her father died in a car accident, she isn't ready to get behind the wheel. Enter Roger. An old family friend, he also has to make the cross-country trip - and has plenty of baggage of his own. The road home may be unfamiliar - especially with their friendship venturing into uncharted territory - but together, Amy and Roger will figure out how to map their way.



Oh, how I didn't want this journey to end!

The best part about "Amy and Roger's Epic Detour" is that it takes you on a journey. No, really. While the book has been heavily advertised as a quintessential road-trip book, and promised a story about an epic journey, what hasn't been promised is to be taken on said journey along with the characters. As Amy and Roger embark on a road trip across America, the reader might as well be in the back seat of the car. The addition of maps, receipts, coupons and postcards into the book made for a truly interactive experience. It was a journey that I never wanted to end. And as far as escapism in literature goes, this road trip really was almost as good as the real thing.

No spoilers ahead.

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TOP 10 SIDEKICKS

Friends, comrades, brothers-in-arms. The time has finally come for us to pick our favorite (or in some way most memorable) sidekicks in literature. Whether it's the all-too-welcome comic relief they provide in an otherwise gloomy series, or whether it's their insight and strength and their love of the lead character, these are the choices that have made us feel their friendship as if it were directed at us personally. This Monday's top 10 list, therefore, features those characters who have felt like more than literary characters, the personalities that went beyond ink and paper. These are the bonds that made us rethink our definition of friendship, and the kind of loyalty that had us ready to go into battle for our own friends time and time again. 

Ancient Romans had a saying: "Amicus certus in re incerta cernitur". Roughly, it translates to our equivalent: "A friend in need is a friend indeed". The list below comprises those friends which shine in need, thus elevating them to the status of sidekicks. When you want someone to warn you of danger, but also watch your back when danger strikes, these will be the people to call.



As always, this list is in no particular order (apart from #1, which we both deemed our #1 pick without a moment's hesitation). The list covers various genres and types of sidekicks. We've tried to find something for everyone's taste. Whether we succeeded is entirely up to you to decide.

And without further ado...




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WEBSITE RECOMMENDATION: BOOKBUB


I hate not being able to afford books. Especially when it's that time of the year when all the good ones come out and you've got no money at all. The thing is, there's always a silver lining and for us, and it's BookBub. I only just found this website and I'm so glad someone recommended it to me! (I'm going to sound like an advert now but seriously, it's such a great site)


If you've not heard of BookBub then you're missing out. People who own Kindles absolutely love this website and why's that? You can get extremely cheap books. And not just cheap one's but free books too. FREE. I'm being serious. 

I've gotten so many good stories from this website, all you have to do is sign up - it's completely free - and it tells you which books are on sale on Amazon. 
When you see a book you like, just click 'Amazon' or any of the other options like Apple, Kobo and B&N and it'll send you to your Kindle page to purchase it. Easy. 

For example, popular book We Were Liars by E. Lockhart at the moment is 99p and I wouldn't know that unless I received an email from BookBub this morning about it. Perfect. 

You need to join this site.

We're telling you this because we want to help each other out. Bookworms helping bookworms. 


WWW.BOOKBUB.COM


Have fun on there! They also have a Facebook page if you're interested. 


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